I want to hear you repeat after me okay? 1,2,3 “IT’S OKAY TO NOT BE OKAY!”

Especially if you are a new mum, and especially if this is your very first rodeo. In this modern world we are expected to know it all (that’s what google is for right?) and we are expected to have it all together (just like all my “friends” on social media yeah?). The reality is that being a mother is so much harder than anyone will ever tell you. I have been where you are, I see you and I want to tell you the most important piece of advice I was ever given. This pearl of wisdom came from a beautiful friend who had her first son a mere week after me, we are forever bonded by the crazy rollercoaster that we rode together and I will be eternally grateful for her endless support… her life altering advice, which came at a time when I needed it more than I knew, was “Courtney, It’s okay to ask for help”.

Asking for help does not make you a failure, nor does it mean you are accepting defeat. I am not a therapist and nor have I ever claimed to be, but I have personally experienced the benefits of reaching out during times of struggle. It could be asking your mum to cook you a few of your old favourite, nutrient rich meals to freeze; so that you can remove dominos from your speed dial. It could be getting a friend to chill with your mini-me while you have a hot shower and for the love of all things holy… wee in peace. Very importantly it could be going to your GP to tell them that you’re not coping as well as you would like to, and asking them to help you get back on your feet. Please just remember, it is okay! It’s only natural to need support sometimes (especially after having your whole world rocked by the immense changes that having a baby brings), and as a new mother you often blend in to the scenery while everyone swoons over your divine offspring.

Now this is where I come in… It is also absolutely okay to reach out a sleep consultant for some help to get on track, and to ensure that you and your littlest love are getting the sleep you both need and deserve. Please don’t allow the opinions of others to lead you believe that getting professional help with your baby’s sleep makes you selfish or even cruel. It is a common misconception that sleep consultants will simply suggest you allow your baby to cry and cry until they can’t cry anymore; I am here to tell you that there is nothing further from the truth.

As a sleep consultant I work with my families to create a holistic and multi-faceted approach to improving their child’s sleep. Sleep is such an important part of our little one’s overall health and development, it is simply ludicrous to say that it is healthy to accept constant cat napping and frequent night disturbances as the norm. Take it from a mother who accepted it as her norm with her first born for several months, who carried the weight of healing from birth, along with post-natal depression, coming to terms with my new identity all the while suffering from severe sleep deprivation. I mean consider this, sleep deprivation is literally used as a torture technique, how is it okay that new mums and their babies accept this as their way of life for months and sometimes even years?! I personally got the help I needed to make improvements to my bubbies sleep and at four months the fog started to clear and my now 21-month-old has been a dream sleeper ever since. I am now a mother of two under two and can tell you that I get as much sleep now as I ever have, even with my two beautiful, clever, well rounded and extremely happy boys. I may not get to sleep in until 10am every weekend anymore (my husband is pretty awesome and makes sure I get the odd one) but it’s a small price to pay for the joy their little faces bring me every day.