Beyond Self-Care: Hope for Postpartum Depression

Sometimes all a mom needs is hope. When buried under the despair of postpartum depression (PPD) or anxiety, it’s hard to imagine a light at the end of the tunnel. The doctor might tell you it’s there, but you don’t see it.

You need proof.

Since there’s no crystal ball to show you the happiness you’ll regain, you have
to get the proof another way. You have to talk to moms who have been there,
living examples of a full recovery from PPD. They exist. In fact, they are

I love connecting moms to others who have been down the same road.  Nearly one million women suffer from perinatal mood and anxiety disorders like PPD, and I want them to know they are not alone and that they will get better.   I’ve seen many times that all it takes is a few words from a mom who has been there to a mom with PPD, who’s feeling isolated and lost, to realize help is available and that she is worth it.

 To offer women with postpartum depression and anxiety  hope and support, I founded Postpartum Progress and Daily Hope, the nation’s first daily support service featuring emails to moms with postpartum depression and anxiety.  Both provide encouragement from survivors, the country’s top perinatal mental health specialists and others who care.  If you or someone you love has PPD, help is only a click away.

Today’s author is Katherine Stone, PPD survivor and spokesperson.

Time for Self-Care: Self-Preserving Not Selfish!

This month we’ve been talking about self-care and the importance of making it part of our lives. Last week, our guest blogger Mommie Kate, had some simple self-care tips which many moms appreciated.  Still, the issue of time stops many women from practicing self-care.  

 In our new book, Life Will Never be the Same: The Real Mom’s Postpartum Survival Guide,  Ann and I devote an entire chapter to the obstacles that get in our way.   Here’s what we write about making time for self-care. 

1. Self-Care is a Choice:

“Children are demanding. They make their needs known. Messy houses scream: “Load these dishes” or “Make that bed.” Bosses inflict deadlines.  Your needs sink to the bottom of the list.  But, no one will make time for you or take care of you if you don’t.  No one will realize your needs if you don’t speak up.  Choose to put yourself first-at least once a day. ”

2. Adjust your expectations

“Another part of making time for yourself  is adjusting your expectations about how much time is needed.  Learn to think small. Take five minutes to practice deep breathing.   Or take twenty minutes to disappear into the bedroom when your partner comes home.  Use multi-tasking, too.   Lie on the floor with a magazine, next to the baby while he has his “tummy time,” and coo to him. Walk or jog with your infant.  Repeat to yourself, “Time for me is essential,” “My baby deserves a happy, healthy mom.”

For more ideas, preview our book at

Smell the Roses: They’re Always There

Many times I figure out what my New Year’s resolution is after the new year starts. That’s what happened this past week.  I woke up Wednesday night thinking, “Stop struggling.  Enjoy the good life you have.”  Don’t get carried away and think my life is perfect.  It isn’t.  Although Ann and I teach  self-care, we are equally challenged to make it part of our daily lives.

The New Year is about how to improve life and ourselves rather than savor what’s already working.  In fact, last week I talked about taking small steps to make change stick which still applies because it’s  challenging to “smell the roses” when facing the “daily grind” as one of my clients puts it.  When did we decide that life had to be difficult and stressful instead of satisfying and joyful?  How often do we hear each other say, “I’m so stressed.  There just aren’t enough hours in the day.”   It’s the mantra of modern life.

I’m listening to Deepak Chopra‘s Reinventing the Body, Resurrecting the Soul: How to Create a New You. He says that reconnecting with our soul’s inner guidance can make our lives easier.  Well, mine woke me up last week and I’m resolved to spend more time soaking up the sunshine and appreciating my blessings.  My family, friends, comfy home, writing with Ann, work I love , and the wonderful community of women whose lives have touched mine.  Each day is a gift.  Even in the darkest night, the stars shine.

Happy Holidays! Self-Care Books We Love

After watching Oprah’s holiday gift show, Ann and I thought seriously about a gift for all of you for your generosity of living self-care with us. As avid readers, we’re gifting you a list of our favorite self-care books. Here’s to your health and happiness.

Life Will Never Be the Same: The Real Mom’s Postpartum Survival Guide. Our new book on what to expect emotionally after having a baby, and how to survive and thrive new motherhood. Detailed self-care plan for all moms.

Even June Cleaver Would Forget the Juice Box: Cut Yourself Some Slack (and Still Raise Great Kids) in the Age of Extreme Parenting. Ann’s most recent solo work, offering concrete ways to change the thinking behind today’s “perfection parenting.” Quit second guessing “am I a good mom?” “How’d I wreck my kid’s life today?” and embrace that you already are a perfectly good parent.

Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom.Dr. Christiane Northrup’s comprehensive book on women’s health and how our emotional life affects us. Great advice about healing from emotional pain and caring for our bodies and souls. Thanks to Dr. Northrup for recommending Life Will Never Be the Same.

The Dance of Anger The essential classic by Harriet Lerner, guiding women through letting go and using anger as a tool for change in lasting relationships. EVERY woman needs this book. Thanks to Harriet for recommending Even June Cleaver Would Forget the Juice Box.

Gift one (or all!) to yourself or a woman you love today.

Win a book!

In all the hubbub of launching the 21 day self-care challenge, we forgot to announce the contest. For each week of the challenge, we will give away a copy of Life Will Never Be The Same: The Real Mom’s Postpartum Survival Guide. The winner will be drawn from those who post comments on the daily tips.

To enter, all you need to do is share your experience with one of the tips–how you made it work for you. Make sure we have your email address, either when you post or email it to us at ann{at} if you’d rather not have your email address public on the blog. Each week, we’ll draw a name and send out a copy of the book. So let us know how it’s going to you, and you could win!