Navigating The Identity Shifts Of Motherhood With Stephanie Garvey

emotional charge home birth identity shifts motherhood postpartum shamanic death May 21, 2024
With Clarity & Purpose | Stephanie Garvey | Motherhood


Motherhood is a beautiful journey filled with overflowing love and a significant life shift. Becoming a mom can feel like stepping into a new identity for many women. The shift can be exciting and unsettling. In today's discussion, Stephanie Garvey, a Coach, Hypnotherapist, and MOM, will be navigating the identity shifts of motherhood. We'll explore the common challenges and emotions that arise as you transition into this new role and equip you with tools to embrace your evolving sense of self. Whether you're a new mom or not, this discussion is for you. Let's embark on this journey of self-discovery and growth together!


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Navigating The Identity Shifts Of Motherhood With Stephanie Garvey

I'm pumped. I'm excited because I have a very special guest. This is the second time she comes into the show, my dear friend and fellow coach, Stephanie Garvey. She's a coach hypnotherapist, a plant medicine enthusiast, and an amazing mom. Welcome, Steph. How are you doing?

Thank you. I’m so well. I love seeing you enter this season of life. It's very exciting to have fellow mothers.

I can’t wait to have our combo here because we were communicating via text with audio messages, and then suddenly, we started entering this real conversation when it comes to the identity shifts that happen in pregnancy and motherhood. You're amazing. You're someone open and vulnerable and you lead from the heart other than you're an amazing mom. I was like, “It would be great to have this combo with Steph about those shifts that happen in motherhood that many times we got to reinvent ourselves and it's like a rebirth of a new us.”

For readers, as of this recording, I'm 24 weeks pregnant. This conversation will be highly beneficial for me. As I was preparing in my mind for this conversation, I was like, “I need to know everything else about Steph,” because you have been a mother in different stages of your life, and I'm sure that has been different for you. I'm curious. Let's start with pregnancy in general.

We could do three episodes on pregnancy, one for each trimester.

We're going to start conception. You and I had a similar experience. We got pregnant and then we miscarried. The baby didn't come to fruition, so I waited one year, but I know you went through a different journey and then you got pregnant again. Maybe we can start there. Miscarrying. That's such an intense situation. How was that for you? What was your decision about having a baby? When you had your babies, how old were you? It was a long time ago.

I had my first right after I turned 20, and then the boys were 19 months apart. I had them very quickly when I was very young. There are pros and cons to any time that you decide to bring a child into the world. What I loved about being a young mom was that I went with whatever it was. I had fewer preconceived ideas about how I should do it the right way, whereas when you live a lifetime, then you're like, “We could do it this way or we could do it this way.”

The ignorance is bliss on being a younger mom, but so much more energy to be awake during the night and that kind of stuff. Those are what I see as the benefits of being a young mom. When I got together with Eric and he was interested in having a child, at first, I told him no. If we wanted to go even before the conception of pregnancies, I met Nicole in a plant ceremony.

I got the chills.

I have a recording from my first night with ayahuasca and what her spirit told me in the ceremony was, “I need to come and I need to be in Eric's life. If you don't want to bring me, move out of the way someone else can.” I listened to the recording and it was a voice recording after the ceremony. I decided I signed a contract for her to come. That was three years before she came. I still had to work through getting prepared to have a pregnancy, become a mother again, and wrap my head around that.

When I was young, I was raised in a way where motherhood was the ultimate pinnacle of what you could achieve. I was very in the mindset of, “This is what I wanted to do. This is what I was going to do.” Doing it all over again was interesting because I had to set aside some of how I thought my life was going to look like and be okay with that and not be okay with it, but be all in because I don't want to be a, “Okay, I guess I'll do it,” kind of mom. You want to be all in.


I have to set aside some of how I thought my life would look like and be okay and be all in with that.


It's like a grieving process of what you thought could have been in your life.

That increases as you're probably experiencing the further you get through a pregnancy. You have that shamanic death of who you are in order to birth who you're becoming. It's a beautiful process when you're able to surrender to it.

Surrender and acceptance are the biggest lessons of pregnancy and even birth and you cannot control anything. You are creating. You don't have control of many things, and that's exactly what happens.

That's a perfect example of the state of mind that you have to be in you're receiving and then you're creating, and it's all about something new, something unexpected, and something you can't control, which can shake a lot of people up to not be able to control a lot of things if you're used to that lifestyle of planning.

You met Nikki, your daughter in an Ayahuasca ceremony. I haven't done ayahuasca, but I know what it is. For those who are like, “I don't know anything about plant medicine,” let's say it intuitively, she connected with the soul of her baby daughter. It is beautiful. Three years after you had her and you were thinking about like, “Am I ready for this?”

Shamanic Death

Do you think your age was a factor? I'm asking you because I have many friends that are 40, close to 40, and they had their first kid and they are like, “Can I do this again? I have my career. I have all of these things.” I think you are such a prime example when I think of someone who embodied that surrender, acceptance, faith and hope of going through the process again.

Before I met her spirit, I had gone to my doctor because I almost secretly had this like, “What if my doctor says that I'm too old? That can be my excuse not to do this.” I went to the doctor and she was like, “What are you doing? You're healthy. You're healthier than most twenty-year-olds I see.” I said, “What do you think about if I were to have another child?” She's like, “Absolutely.” I was like, “Okay.” This is a funny story.

Within 24 hours of that doctor's appointment, I had a client reach out to me, and this was a real estate client because I was in real estate at the time. I was selling her house. She reached out to me. This is an 80-plus-year-old woman. She goes, “Stephanie, the weirdest thing happened last night. I had a dream that you were going to have a little girl. I have something for you. I want you to come over to the house.” I went over to her house and she said, “This is the first blue ribbon I ever received.” She handed me this little purple dress and she said, “In the dream, I was supposed to give you this dress.

I've gotten chills five times already. It's crazy.

This is super bizarre. There was a lot of what worked for me like, “I'm supposed to do this it was.” I got pregnant a year and a half after that with the baby that I lost. It was a gift to me to have this experience of that I thought I was going into motherhood again then to have it taken away. It was like, “This is the opportunity here.” It helped me to come to terms with whether I was mentally and emotionally prepared for the decision that I was making. After the experience of loss, it was like, “Yes, I want to do this,” that I hadn't necessarily felt throughout that pregnancy.

It was like if you're getting pulled and you're like, “I'm going to do it.” After that, it was a, “Yes, I'm supposed to do this.” I went into the next pregnancy, the pregnancy with Nicole. I was very dedicated to preparing my physical body to be able to handle the load of pregnancy because there's a huge physical aspect to being pregnant. You have to care for yourself in ways that you don't realize that you need to care for yourself when you're not carrying a child.


You have to care for yourself in ways you don't realize that you need to care for yourself when you're not carrying a child.


I feel connected when you mention your experience around the loss because whenever I got pregnant, it felt like that push and pull of like, “I want this, but this is a big sacrifice. Where is my coffee?” I'm drinking coffee and milk. You are adopting this new identity that is completely different from a person before you knew you were pregnant, then when I lost the baby, it was super sad and intense. I realized that I wasn't ready at that moment emotionally, mentally, and physically. Why? I had lost many family members. I think that was one of the darkest years of my life. I was grieving for many people who died.

I had transitioned from corporate to entrepreneurship. It was many identity shifts at the same time. In our case, we decided to take a whole year of not trying, and then after that year, we started trying for four months. I remember in those four months, one time I think I was frustrated. I'm like, “We are trying. This is not happening. What the heck is going on?” That attachment to the outcome. I remember you messaged me and you were like, “I had the craziest dream yesterday.” You sent me a text message, “I woke up crying hap of the emotion of happiness because I had a dream that you were pregnant and I can feel the baby breathing,” the heart beating or something like that.

That was such a divine text from you that made me feel so much better because sometimes we can become attached to the outcome in the process. We wanted to happen right now. In the creation process, there is no control, there is no attachment. It is fear surrendering. I had two more people message me that they dreamt of a similar thing. That was 1 or 2 months after. When I finally surrendered, I said, “Whatever happens will happen. It is not meant to happen. It will not happen,” which was only four months of trying. We dramatized things in our heads.


I had a dream that night. For readers, dreams are such an amazing vehicle mechanism for our intuition to communicate with us. I had a dream, and the dream was, “You are close to getting pregnant, but you got to take action.” I remember waking up, “Cody, I had this dream and this is the action plan for today.” That's when I got pregnant. It was through this dreaming state, through this connection. I love all of the similarities that we are sharing.

Let me ask you because this has been an experience for me, especially in this last pregnancy, how has it been for you with your body changing?


The physical body.

I ask you that because even in the first trimester, my taste completely changed. Of all the symptoms of the first trimester, that was the most frustrating because I enjoy food and I couldn't enjoy anything. That was the first thing that came to mind. When it comes to my body changing, honestly, I've been super excited about being proud of having a belly and not having to hide it for the first time. I'm like, “I can show my belly now.” I think there were two days, which is not a lot, that I was like, “I'm getting bigger.” When I look at my arms, my arms are getting bigger like, “What the heck?” My boobs are not that big. They're going to be, or that's not a big deal. I have had  2 or 3 days that I'm like, “What's going to happen even after I give birth?” It hasn't been intense. I've felt more excitement and pride of my body changing. I know many women struggle with the self-image part of pregnancy. Did you struggle with that?

Up until the end, I had that same pride of, “My body is freaking amazing. This is unreal.” I was very nauseous for the first trimester. I remember I took the first picture that I had taken of myself in 3 or 4 months. I was like, “I look like a gnome.” I had a hat on and was like, “I look like I came out of a cave,” because I have been in hibernation and look like this little gnome.

With all my pregnancies, I felt this very intense pride in my body's capability, then towards the end, it became challenging through the end of pregnancy and into postpartum after the baby was born. I always like to blame it on society's image of beauty. It's my image of beauty that I had to look at why is it that I'm judging myself so hard when my body is doing exactly what it is built to do in such an incredible way? I'm looking at my seven-month-old baby and I'm like, “You have existed off of my body alone for over an entire year.”

It's a miracle. When we are in the midst of it, there is a sense of pride because it serves a purpose, but I can totally see when the baby is not there anymore. Sometimes, we're outcome-focused that we are like, “This is leftover. What the heck is this?” instead of trusting the process. Imagine at the end of my pregnancy and even postpartum, I would feel that way because I think it's natural.

It's part of that whole process throughout pregnancy. I think you have all those. I'm going to keep calling them shamanic deaths in the sense that your identity feels like it's dying and being reborn at the same time. It’s the physical representation of like, “Things are changing.” You are in a constant state of change during that, which means that something has to go, something new has to come. It's a neat way of looking at what's happening in our emotional, mental, and spiritual state. Our physical body is the manifestation of that.


Even in the first trimester, I was like, “How can women like pregnancy?” In the first trimester, I'm sorry, but I feel horrible. I’m nauseous all the time. I am struggling energy-wise. I don't feel myself. My taste is different. There are so many things. When you look at the creation process, I think the beginning is when you start doing something that is different, that requires a new identity and the end, the completion, the last 10%, which is when you're birthing there and contractions are getting the heaviest and are the painful you're almost there, like that breakthrough.

To me, the beginning was challenging and I couldn't understand how people can love this, but then now that I'm in my 24th week, I'm loving it. I'm like, “I love being pregnant. I love feeling the baby. I laid down and I want to connect with the baby.” It is such a beautiful feeling.  Even during the process, it changes much in how we perceive the process itself.

Another thing, and I want your opinion on this, when I got pregnant, I was excited this time. I'm like, “Yes, we made it,” other than I hope this pregnancy progresses because there is always that little fear of like, “I hope this is it.” I was like, “I had a dream, so this has to happen.” You get all this evidence that it's going to happen, but pregnancy is such a vulnerable process to that. You never know. When I got pregnant, I thought of many mothers that I've coached that had this limiting belief of, “I cannot be a great mom and thrive at my career at the same time,” because when I got pregnant, I was like, “I'm excited for this, but how am I supposed to grow my business?”

Not that it's impossible, but it was that survival mechanism of something's got to give. In your mind, it's like, “Something's got to give because we see time as linear. If now I'm getting pregnant and going to doctor's appointments and having a baby, I'm raising a baby, how can I do it all?” which is totally possible. It's more of a limiting belief that I had to work through. How was that for you mentally on how you perceived yourself, your identity of success, and the career aspect?

I Receive More. I Make More

I think that you can have it all. What it comes down to is going from, a lot of times when we're in that space without children or without young children, you get into this space of like, “If I do more, I receive more, I make more,” and you're in this doing energy. Once you go through the process of becoming a mother, or in my case, becoming a mother again, and you have a young child that's dependent on you, a lot of times your value systems change and you help people with finding what their values are and how to live by their values.


Your value systems change when you become a mother.


When big life events happen, a lot of times, those values will shift. All of a sudden, it's what is more important to me in this moment and how that looks is different for each person. If you want to have it all, it forces you to be energetic because you can't do what you did before while having that great connection with your child, husband, and family. What I've learned through this process is how to settle into continuing what you learn through pregnancy and receptivity.

You have to receive in order to create. Staying more in that feminine energy as you go through birth and the first stages with your child, it's staying in that feminine of, “I receive sperm, I make a baby. I receive this, I create this.” It's coming from more of an inspired energy instead of, “I'm going to do this,” which is more of a masculine, “Get it done.” There are times and seasons for both energies. In that season, it very much points towards that we have an easier time if we stay in that feminine energy.


You have to receive to create.


That's exactly what I felt because even when I had that belief or that fear, it’s a natural fear of, “How can I continue growing this that is purpose-driven to me and then have a baby?” When I worked on it, I started feeling way more abundant. I feel even the act of creating a life allowed me to feel that abundance of creation. Also, manifesting in my business because even though I was doing less, because it was less ego-driven, I was more from the being, which is more heart-driven, more feminine. I was still generating the same results, which was to be mind-blowing because we are in a society that it's highly masculine. Many women associate doing more with more success and sometimes we get to do less and course correct into that being energy.

Moving from pregnancy, we'll skip over birth for this but into the postpartum stage.

Tell me about it.

So much of being successful if you choose to breastfeed and your breastfeeding journey in connecting with your baby and creating that bond is about being. It's funny, I'm on these groups and people that have low milk supply are like, “What can I eat? What can I do? What supplement?” The lactation consultants are always saying, “No, skin to skin with your baby and offer them to eat.” That's how you create more milk. You don't need the tea. You can support your body, but it's not about doing. It's about being. It's interesting because we have this like, “I  need my little checklist.”

More knowledge, “I need to watch another course. I need to get more knowledge from people.”

There are nuances to anybody reading, but that's the primary takeaway that I get from that group. If you relax and allow things to come, we don't have to do more in order to get more results like you're talking about. Being able to relax in that energy and something that helped me because when I went through postpartum with my two older children, I don't remember having such crazy mood swings because you go through a very drastic hormonal change in four months, especially in the first day, but then in four months.

This time, I knew that it was my hormones. I knew it wasn't like, “I'm depressed.” It was like, “My hormones are trying to readjust to life.” What ended up helping me much was choosing a visualization recording. I committed to, “I'm going to listen to this every morning.” It was on abundance and it was twenty minutes long. Within a month I felt like my mindset totally shifted. I was doing things with herbs and stuff to help my physical body. Time helps with that, too.

I felt like my biggest takeaway was spending this concentrated amount of time bringing the messages to my mind that I wanted to embody. That made the biggest difference. Those 20 minutes made the biggest difference in my entire day than anything else. More than taking a shower or getting all my meals in, herbs, and all these things. It was like, “Take a moment and readjust the mind.”


Meditation and visualization. The whole premise of meditation is to do less and be more. You got to be. I resonate with that so much because even in the conception of our baby now, “I was like, we got to do more lala,” then the moment that I stopped doing more and I surrendered right into that being energy, we had sex not once a month. We had sex that moment and we didn't have tons of sex that month or during the fertility window or any of that. It was one time with surrender. That said, and the same thing, I was watching some childbirth education videos from my doula.


She was talking about relaxing like, “Even if you get pain medication, sometimes if you are not relaxed, that's not going to even be effective in your body because you are inducing more stress and more stress from the mind.” Instead of doing more and worrying, you have to relax. I imagine that it's challenging when you are in pain, but you had an at-home birth. You are the one who knows the best about this.

For those who haven't birthed the child, if you have done a cold plunge or an ice bath, it's that on a greater scale. When you get into that ice bath, your whole body wants to clinch up. Have you ever had an ice bath?


What you're trying to do is bring yourself back into your body to come back to your breath, to slow everything down. That's what allows you to be able to stay in the cold plunge and get the benefits from it. It's not tightening up. It's the, “How do I lean into this experience?” Birth is similar to that. There are differences, but if you haven't birthed the child, that's the easiest metaphor for it because what you're doing is you're feeling this intense pressure that can be painful for some people. What you're trying to do is not go, “Ouch,” and tighten up your body. You're trying to relax the muscles.


You're trying to relax with it, go into it and come back to your breath. I've had three unmedicated births. Two of them were home births. With Nicole, I remember that I started getting high tonality because of the pressure. My midwife says, “No, bring it down low,” because that helps us ground more into the body. She's like, “Bring the sound lower.” Making lower sounds, like bringing the sound register down, helps you to get back into your body because if you imagine, when you talk high, it comes up and when you talk low and slow, it brings it down. You can't see on the screen, but I'm going down towards my sit bones. It brings it down and you feel more grounded in your body. That's the challenge of that day. That feels like no time and space exists as you're birthing your child.

I thought it's probably because, like all of us, the body faces uncertainty in the face of the pain of childbirth or this cold from the cold bath then you have to go from reaction to consciously responding to it and bringing more certainty from within to this situation that it's new.

I can't speak to a medicated birth, but with an unmedicated birth, you have much going on in your mind and body. You're still thinking as quickly as you would right now, but you can't bring it out of you. I was telling Eric, “I said this,” and he's like, “You never said any of that.” I was thinking about it so much. I wanted to communicate it, but I couldn't, it wasn't the space for words. That's what I experienced before with my other births, was that I thought that I was saying a lot more than I did. It was a very internal process of what I was feeling, but it did not come completely across.

Let's go to postpartum motherhood after being pregnant. When we were talking on the voice notes, you mentioned this feeling that all women are very familiar with and I think every time we shift identity or we have a rebirth, we go through a similar process. This feeling is not enoughness coming from our body, soul or whatever that is. How has that been for you in this process of motherhood? We coach many women and that's the major thing women also struggle with, “I'm not enough. I'm not worthy.”  How has this transition to postpartum motherhood related to this not-enough feeling?

Postpartum Motherhood 

You do a lot of work on that and you can go through these periods where you think like, “I totally did that. I totally figured it out, but I'm worthy, I'm healed,” then you go through an experience where it's like, “No, here's a different way to look at it.” I think what postpartum showed me was where I had chosen to put my identity. We like to think of ourselves in certain terms. It was Bob Proctor in one of his guided hypnosis. He said, “You don't say, ‘Am hand,’ you say, ‘I have a hand,’" but we get obsessed with our identity being on something in particular in this life and our identity is not our body, a hand or a foot.

We have these things, but it's not who we are. It gives you this whole new opportunity to look at your life and go, “Maybe I put a little too much of who I thought that I was and my worth on being a coach or on bringing in a certain income or on how my body looked.” It gives you these opportunities to realize that those are aspects of your life. It's not who you are. When you get down to who you are, which is that soul or spirit experiencing all these things, you know that you're enough because that part of you is enough. If you put your identity on being a coach and then you're not a coach for three months, who are you? If you put your identity on being a size 2 and you're not a size 2 and even when you start getting back to it, you're tucking stuff into your pants, who are you?


In general, we tend to put our identity in these things that can come and go and not on the soul spirit awareness. That's when we are enough because there's nothing you can add or detract from that. I love that. You just are. It's the death process of anything you attached yourself too much to letting go of. There is a physical aspect to it, like your relationship with your partner changes because anytime another human being comes into your home, it's going to change, but also you're sleep deprived. I used to tell my friends, “You don't know who you married until you go through three nights of no sleep together.”

We both love sleeping.

We were 36 hours in after Nicole had been born or maybe from when we had slept because I'd been in labor. We were 36 hours and we hadn't had any sleep. He goes, “I googled how long it takes to have permanent brain damage from not sleeping.” It was like, “It's going to be okay.” He ended up doing shifts after that to help us. He was committed to wanting to help me that anytime I was up even nursing the baby, he was up and like, “What can I do for you?” He was very attentive, but that resulted in both of us not having any sleep. Regardless of how you do it, you're going through a process of being under a lot of physical stress because of the lack of sleep. Birth is whether you're medicated or unmedicated. It's the biggest workout your body could ever go through and the biggest transition your body could ever go through to just processing with that.

I love that you touched on that transition from having this identity of a coach, of a real estate agent, to again being. The answer is always going back to that being, which is at the sole level. When I transitioned from calling myself an engineer to a coach, even that was a death to the ego in many ways. That was an identity shift, not motherhood, but it's you letting go of what you think you are and embracing a more aligned version, which is closest to that being energy to that soul-level identity in a way. I love that.

The Biggest Shift

I'm curious because Cody and I are in one of the best stages of our relationship. We went through a hard and tough period when I was grieving all of my family. I was going through much and he's learning like, “How do I support her?” We went to couple therapy. We are doing amazing. I know the relationship changes in some way after you give birth to your beautiful baby. What has been the biggest change shift when it comes to your relationship after you have a baby?

Because I'd had kids before, I knew what to expect from a bird's eye view. I tried to catch Eric up to speed because it was his first child. Ultimately, I think everyone goes through a little bit of a difficult time figuring everything out because there are many new things. It's like, “Are you both going to change diapers? Are you going to change diapers? Are you the only one feeding? Are there bottles? Are you sharing the feeding time? Who gets up to pick up the baby?” all these new things to your life. It doesn't sound like a lot, but it's like a full-time job.

You are overwhelmed and trying to figure out who's doing what when you're together. Sometimes, we're fortunate because we've both been able to be here mostly 24/7 with our daughter. I would say that in the beginning, because we had gone through this committing to see the best in the person, commit to believing that they're doing the best that they can. Can you find humor in the situation? Humor will save the day so many times.

What you said about the intent assuming positive intent is because many times, when we are in survival mode or we are going through a challenge, our mind wants to go to the worst-case scenario. I think that's such a good reminder.

We watched this show during the postpartum days and this woman was always yelling her husband's name and her husband's name was Meredith. She was always going, “Meredith.” We're like, “We'll make everything Meredith's fault.” If you can find something funny like we're going to blame some other person who doesn't even exist like when we're both frustrated and I had learned to do that from the first time I had kids, then it's funny because it's like, “There's nothing wrong here,” but it takes the emotion out of like, “You said you were going to do this and I need this. My needs aren't being taken care of.”

Emotional Charge

If you can make it humorous by like, “It's Meredith's fault.” Sorry for any Meredith reading. It's like a funny way to take the emotion out of it and then you can figure out anything. We're very resourceful beings. We can figure anything out. Taking the emotional charge out of like, “You're not meeting my needs. I'm not meeting your needs. The baby's needs aren't being met.” Commit to that. Commit to some way of making light of the situation.

How do you two communicate? There are many responsibilities to take care of there. There are many new things to take care of. I'm curious.  I need to ask these two more moms, but do you give a note on your phone or is it all verbal? I imagine a project management system or something.

I'm sure it's different for each person. We figured out the things as we went. I was fortunate because Eric's mom came and stayed with us for several weeks. She helped with laundry, cleaning and making food and everything. She took good care of us so that we could focus on the baby and the changes. It takes a little bit of time because you have no idea until you've done it. How many different little things? It depends on everybody's situation.

When I had my older children, their dad was a great dad, but he was very busy. He was working full-time and a student full-time. I was primarily doing everything as far as the physical needs being met. In a situation where you have a partner who is available to help you, then you're figuring out, it's like household chores. When you move in together, who empties the garbage and who loads the dishwasher? Some people want to write it down. Some people are like, “I like doing laundry. You like doing the dishes. Let's stick with that.”

He would like to change diapers. No, I'm joking.

Eric changes diapers, but we've had an unspoken thing like he takes out all the dirty diapers when the pale is full. We never had a conversation like, “Can you always be the person to take this out?” He started doing it and it worked. Now, it's what we do. It's like, “Can you take that out if it's full?” Everybody figures out their own thing.

That makes me have so much hope. I'm excited to go through the whole motherhood experience and embrace it with surrender and acceptance with that feminine energy.

Something that came to mind that I wanted to share that I've learned from doing this is being in the position where I have an eighteen-year-old who is leaving home. It's a crazy beginning and end to have together. Something that I have learned is that it is not about trying to attain something. It's about the journey to get there.

It is like your life is what is happening. It's not about having a perfectly bathed diapered baby. It's about it continues. Life continues. I think when we get away from trying to have the checklist of, “This is what I want to achieve in order for my life to look this way,” it's about, “How can I find enjoyment in each of these things that I'm doing? How can I enjoy my life as it is unfolding?” I have this mug that says, “The days are long, but the years are short.” It could not be more true.

You'll have a lot of people that tell you that like, “It goes by fast.” I’m sitting here with a son who's about to leave home. I'm not going to wake up to have breakfast with him anymore or take him to school or anything. It hits you in a different way of, “They grow up and leave.” I know that I'll always have a great relationship with him, but it's always going to be different. These are the special moments that we have with our kids and how you choose to live in the moment is going to affect them too.

It is the only thing that matters. That's the only thing that we have. I was having a great day, a moment of enjoyment, and then my mind was like, “You need to start doing these ten things.” I'm like, “I'm enjoying the moment right now.” It is this transition from wanting to achieve more and do more to, “Am I having an amazing, happy, rich, abundant life right now at this moment? Yes. Why am I seeking to freaking mess that up in the next minute?” That's such a good reminder. I know you're getting more and more into meditation. Was there a practice or a technique or a habit you have been working on to tap more into that being surrendering energy during postpartum motherhood and everything else?

Hypnosis is my go-to. I've started creating recordings for different things because I realized that as a mother when you go through pregnancy and postpartum, your physical brain is changing. You'll know this soon because when you go into postpartum, you get what they consider mom brain. A lot of stuff is like you're focused on the baby because that's how nature intended it. You can look up all the scientific stuff behind what is changing in the brain to make that occur, but it's literally changing. If it's changing, how much possibility do we have to steer the mindset that we want to have as it's shifting? I spent a lot of time in that in-between sleep and awake.


Your physical brain is changing when you go through pregnancy and postpartum.


Still, even now, because my baby is still waking up to nurse in the middle of the night, there's a lot of wake up, go to sleep, wake up, go to sleep. We know that the mind is very susceptible to suggestion during that time. You're always in that space for a little bit, utilizing that time to empower you so that you feel amazing because you are amazing. You are creating something and allowing something to exist off of you that is pulling from another realm into complete manifestation in this beautiful abundance of a child that has everything perfectly happening all at once. That's why we fall in love with our babies because they're perfect. It's everything they don't need to instruct their bodies to do what it is that they're doing.

They don't need to instruct their minds to absorb information. They make a million synapses in their brain every second or something crazy like that. Seeing that in your baby and realizing that you have that ability, that is the practice that I've done and I would highly recommend, is giving yourself those moments, whether you have to get a babysitter or have your partner hold the baby or do it while you're nursing, but giving yourself 10 or 20 minutes to bring in the information of how you want to experience your day is powerful.

There's a second one that's very quick, too. Somebody told me before I gave birth to Nicole that they were talking about their wife and how, in the shower, she talked to herself about her body. You are amazing, and thinking of all the ways that your physical body is supporting this child, what you've experienced, what you're going to experience. It's a great way to come back into your body and appreciate life for what it is, for what you're experiencing. When you're in the shower, think of all the amazing things your body is doing because it's doing a lot.

That reminds me of Louise Hay’s Mirror Work. You're looking at yourself in the mirror, admiring yourself and telling amazing things to yourself. I feel the shower work. People, don't think anything else but the shower work. I feel it's like the same reprogramming of your mind as you're feeling those things. I think that's powerful.

You're very emotional when you're pregnant, but you're also emotional when you're postpartum or can be emotional. I'll probably be. I started writing down what was making me cry because I could laugh at it when I saw it written down, but it felt extreme at the moment. A plate wasn't taken downstairs and it was devastating. That's not devastating. That's okay to have a plate that didn't make it downstairs when you write it down.


You're very emotional when you're pregnant, but you're also emotional when you're postpartum.


When you write it down, you take that emotion out, you make it more factual and then you can observe it from a different point of view. I love that so much. I'm going to do that. I'll probably be emotional. I'm an emotional person overall and I find myself crying for not on the negative side, but a lot of the positive. I see a video on Instagram about a baby and I'm like, “Oh my god.” All the good things, like baby-related, mom-related and emotional-related, make me tear up. It's amazing. I'm excited. We got the second opportunity to do an episode. You're amazing. I appreciate you so much as a friend.

Thank you for the kind words. I'm excited for you to embark on this journey.

I'm excited. I'll be texting you, “I need to shower work or something.”

“Is this normal?” I'll say, “Yes, it's normal.”

All of it is normal. You are not crazy. I would appreciate that. That helps a lot. If someone wants to connect with you, where do they connect with you?

They can connect with me on Instagram. I'm @StephGarvey. They can email me. It's [email protected]. I also have the website if anyone wants to work with me there.

Thank you to all of the readers. If you found this episode inspiring, empowering, or helpful, please share it with your friends and family. We appreciate you. I  love that we got together to talk about navigating the identity shifts that come with motherhood. It’s such an important topic. Thank you so much, Steph.

Thank you for having me.


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 About Stephanie Garvey

Coach, hypnotherapist, plant medicine enthusiast, and MOM.






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