Mélanie, Montréal (4/4)
"My community and support system, I built them around my partner, my oldest friends, and my parents. I didn’t feel the need to participate in mommy gatherings or to subscribe to online moms’ groups. I knew it existed, but I was really happy by myself and surrounded by the people I knew, not going out too much. Also, I knew I had to protect myself from other parents’ opinions and advice, because of the risk of constantly comparing myself. I was certain I didn’t have to go out, to visit my coworkers, or to resume my training, but I still felt the need to explain my decision. At the same time, I wasn’t blissfully embracing motherhood at home, and it often felt like I had a job to do. The first year was physically exhausting. When I close my eyes and reminisce about my maternity leave, I remember being starving and dehydrated. You know, at some point you just want to have time to eat your peanut butter toast before you have to breastfeed again. So, yeah. I didn’t have time to go on walks or to do yoga with other moms. But in the end, I learned to let go. I guess that’s what my message would be: believe in a community, but bond yourself to it according to the child you have – and not the other way around. It’s your job as a mom to respect your baby’s needs and personality while trying to find something interesting and fulfilling for yourself too. Recently, I started to workout again with my triathlon club. I’m in the slowest runners. And you know what? I don’t give a shit."