I was definitely one of those mothers who didn't really engage with motherhood until a baby was hauled out of my bits. I wasn't really sure what I was doing and sleepless nights, colic, breastfeeding sagas and the inevitable bickering with my husband didn't help.
I was never diagnosed with PND, but I definitely had more than a case of baby blues, and I struggled to adjust to my new identity as a MOTHER. As most women do currently, I did the lioness's share of the child-rearing in the early days, and there were moments of delight (mainly when she was sleeping) but I didn't really cherish her as social media led me to believe I would. I certainly didn't want to spend time at baby massage or gymboree. But as I started to get used to things (bye bye Google, hello intuition) and love my baby a little more everyday, it became clear that activities were the way forward. Not only for my daughter, but for me too!
For my money, activities and classes are great because:
1) They give you something to do to get out of the house, which you don't have to think about or plan;
2) There's usually something nearby and it's almost certainly going to be indoors, so you don't have to worry about the weather;
3) Even if you don't end up best buds with the other mums, it's really nice to be able to talk to Another Grownup once in a while;
4) it gives you are break from thinking about bubba's routine and mind numbing baby tunes;
5) There are actually a lot of cool (and regional) mum things out there now, like events from Mamas Collective Manchester, things listed on The London Mothers Club, Mummas and More in Ely, and Tatty Bumpkin kids yoga nationwide.
6) Take the chance to do something for yourself and bring your baby along too - Frame do fitness classes you can bring bubba along to, and Scummy Mummies often do daytime comedy shows, as well as our own &Breathe events and retreats of course!
Make sure you build in time for self-care, whatever that looks like, because that's what going to baby classes and activities is: getting a bit of you time back, whether that's keeping the baby entertained so your mind can wander (just a teeny bit) or doing something that matters to you while not having to think about childcare. Our retreats can be a great way to take that to the next level, to look after yourself and bring baby and daddy along too.