Self-love doesn’t come from fixing yourself; it comes from falling in love with parts of yourself you’ve been trying to fix.
-Hannah D Blum
There tends to be oh so many feelings and emotions in motherhood for all of us. The myriad of feelings and emotions stirred up from the moment you meet your baby after birth through babyhood, to ddler years, preschool school, elementary school years, preteen, teen, and eventually launching them into adulthood. There’s so much emotional learning for us as moms, and often so much we want to teach our kids about emotional intelligence, especially as they grow and mature and move closer to living on their own. So, let’s dive into this topic of motherhood feelings and emotions further…
The four primary emotions are often identified as:
Although these are the four primary emotions I learned about in my training to become a Registered Play Therapist/RPT (long ago and long since put on inactive status so I could focus on my perinatal mental health work with pregnant and postpartum moms), I’d also add “Bad” to this list. Bad as in anything that causes you to feel guilt (which is behavior based) or shame (which attacks you on a personal level often to your core).
Do you agree with this addition? Anything else you’d add?
Also remember that even though anger is on the list above, it’s actually considered a secondary emotion. This means that there are other emotions underneath anger such as sadness, fear, grief, loneliness, disappointment, frustration, guilt, shame, hopelessness, etc.
Next, think about where you feel and carry your emotions in your body. It’s important to pay attention to the somatic signs and signals your body is sending your when emotions are running high. Maybe you carry these feelings in your:
Or some other place in your body? Which one resonates most with you? These often change depending on what feeling we’re talking about as well.
It can also be super helpful to do a feelings and emotions check in at the end of your day. This can be solo and written down in a journal as journal prompts or refection questions. This may be at dinner time with your partner or at bedtime with your kids. You decide what works best for you and your family, especially depending on the age of your kid/s! Here are the questions:
- What’s something that made you feel happy today?
- What’s something that made you feel sad today?
- What’s something that made you feel mad today?
- What’s something that made you feel scared today?
- What was the best part of your day?
What other questions would you add here?
Heightened feelings and emotions can be hard to deal with throughout motherhood, but being aware of how you’re really doing from moment to moment, and allowing yourself time and space to feel these feelings, can be helpful to your own healing process. Know that you’re not alone as you navigate all the ins and outs of your own motherhood journey, heightened emotions and all. I’m sending lots of love and support your way!