Sun | Nov 27, 2022

A ‘motherload’ of topics: Mummy Mingle discussion highlights maternal health

Published:Friday | May 13, 2022 | 12:06 AMStephanie Lyew/Gleaner Writer
Owner of Cosmic Wombman Ramona Riley brought with her, positive energy and could be seen empowering every woman as she mingled at the event.
Owner of Cosmic Wombman Ramona Riley brought with her, positive energy and could be seen empowering every woman as she mingled at the event.
From left: Clinical psychologist Dr Kai Morgan, founder of Young Mummy Diaries Tamiann Young and health and wellness coach Kamila McDonald.
From left: Clinical psychologist Dr Kai Morgan, founder of Young Mummy Diaries Tamiann Young and health and wellness coach Kamila McDonald.
Host Tamiann Young zones into the evening’s conversations of maternal health.
Host Tamiann Young zones into the evening’s conversations of maternal health.
 The In Crowd founder Shackeria Williams was in attendance for Mummy Mingle.
The In Crowd founder Shackeria Williams was in attendance for Mummy Mingle.
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A chorus of mothers took advantage of a night out, put on their best outfits, and showed up for ‘Mummy Mingle’ at the Hyundai Showroom last Friday, for an evening of ‘mumosas’ and conversation, courtesy of Young Mummy Diaries.

Held under the theme ‘Reset, Renew, Reimagine: A Post-COVID Conversation’, the guest speakers for the night, Kamila McDonald and Dr Kai Morgan, discussed the importance of health and wellness as a mother.

During the heartfelt discussion segment of the mingle, the host, founder, and mommy-in-charge of Young Mummy Diaries, Tamiann Young, explained that the purpose of the event was for all the mothers to network, share their stories, and see how one mother’s story could help another find the solution for the family’s woes, or just point a mother in the direction of the road to healing.

Speaking to Living, Young said, “My strong belief is, if we want to heal a nation, it starts with one mother at a time. The intention and vision behind the organisation are to curate and create events where real change happens. Where real conversations and advocacy lead to enhancing the level of discussion around parenting beyond lip service, and hereby influence policy change surrounding motherhood and parenting.”

She added, “This is why I asked Dr Morgan, a clinical psychologist, to be on my panel. It was for us to discuss the facts of motherhood, for example, how a traumatized individual responds to pregnancy; and also why I extended an invitation to the state minister in the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Juliet Cuthbert-Flynn, who is primarily responsible for maternal health.”

She expressed that the conversations surrounding maternal health should have a 360-degree approach as it relates to a mother and her mental psyche, environment, support, health, and how the country supports her. All the mothers present endorsed this and were teeming with questions related to their own experiences and challenges.

Young urged her audience of mothers to remove the fear of becoming part of the change that is needed. “We have to start somewhere. Some of us are visionaries, and though we may not live to see some of the things become a reality, it is important for us to put things in place,” she said.

To which Cuthbert-Flynn agreed. Speaking about the health ministry’s plans, she said that one of the things that will be put in place is a hotline, which, according to Dr Christopher Tufton’s sectorial presentation, will require them to employ a call centre to assist with the large number of calls that are expected daily. She also shared that several professionals will make themselves available to take the calls.

“One of the main things being discussed of late is mental wellness, [so] I am happy you are touching on that, because after the lockdown I think it is a topic that is important,” Cuthbert-Flynn said. Noting that one of her assigned areas in the Ministry of Health and Wellness is maternal health, she continued to speak about postpartum depression as it relates to the mental health of mothers, whether they are new to the idea of mothering a child or are experienced in raising children.

“A lot of people live in silence and not knowing what it (postpartum depression) is. We need to have more awareness among women who don’t know what they are going through. We need to serve our women better. I think we need to be linking women after they have babies at the hospital, to a counsellor to get them some sort of help,” she said.

She holds from a holistic view that educating mothers and providing services such as counselling, after they have given birth, will help prevent or lessen the cases of depression observed in mothers.

SHIFTING THE POWER

Dr Morgan started her segment of the discussion by saying that for one to reimagine their lives and lifestyle, they must be able to reset and renew first. “Take something and do it with intentionality that you are going to start doing it tonight, or tomorrow morning at the latest, to try to shift some of this overwhelm that you are feeling,” she explained.

She also said that as mothers, women are constantly reinventing themselves at different stages in their lives; so while it may seem like a challenge to reset and renew, it is about shifting the energy and power to tap into a new space.

Meanwhile, McDonald, who was not only a guest speaker but catered for the event with vegan dishes from her restaurant, Kamila’s Kitchen, focused on the approach to wellness.

Supporting Dr Morgan’s statement, she said, “We are a lot more powerful than we give ourselves credit for, to create the shifts that we desire for our lives.”

“Just show up for yourselves in love. We don’t need to work out because we hate our body, we don’t need to eat right because we hate our body, but we need to work out and eat better because we love our bodies. We need to connect with each other because we love ourselves, and because we always want to think better of ourselves and can show up better for ourselves. So, keep doing the work and it will add up. You will be amazed with what you can accomplish when you prioritise and love yourself,” McDonald continued.

stephanie.lyew@gleanerjm.com