When We Know Better…

2 Apr

Prompt:  Find a quote that inspires you (either positively or negatively) and free write about it for 15 minutes.

When I asked for a quote on Facebook and Twitter from my #ppdchat mamas, this one instantly had me in tears.  Must have been the right one.

‎”When we know better, we do better.” Maya Angelou

It’s very popular and I’m sure you’ve heard it spewed from Oprah’s mouth on more than one occasion, but there’s good reason for that.

It’s simple.

It’s hopeful.

And it’s true.

This is my second baby.  My second time living through the physical and emotional roller coaster of pregnancy, and my second time experiencing the fourth trimester.  It really is amazing how much you forget about having a newborn.  The sleep deprivation.  How hard breastfeeding is.  All of it.  This is my second time parenting with an anxiety disorder, but so far without the PPD.

Of course I know better this time how to take care of a newborn.  All the logistics are less frightening because they are more familiar, but also because I know that I made mistakes with No1 and she is just fine.  But what I’m struck by is what I know better about myself.

“When we know better, we do better.”

I know postpartum depression is a medical condition and not a personal failing.  I will recognize the symptoms and seek treatment if things take a turn for the worse.

I know newborns are not my favorite age.  I will not feel guilty for just surviving these first few months (or more).

I know when I’m taking my husband’s comments personally, I’m projecting.  I will stop and look inside myself.

I know that lack of sleep is a recipe for disaster.  Sleep has become the most treasured resource I have.  I will treat it as such.

I know that my health and feelings matter just as much as my baby’s.  I will value myself.

I know that the hard parts about having a new baby will eventually fade.  I will take comfort that “this too shall pass.”

I know I am not alone.  I will continue to reach out and connect with others.

I know that depression is a liar and shame likes to hide in the dark.  I will fight both with the light of truth.

4 Responses to “When We Know Better…”

  1. Sarah (Smldada) April 2, 2012 at 9:55 am #

    Love it! That’s a beautiful quote.

    I found my life quote in a romance novel by M Dalton:

    Of all sad words, of tongue or pen,
    The saddest are, ‘it might have been’

    They inspire me to say yes, to take a chance or a leap of faith. But mostly, they remind me to be honest with myself at all times, to weigh each decision and kow that I am doing the best I can in this moment, and that I have no regrets.

  2. jamesandjax April 2, 2012 at 10:09 am #

    Perfect quote. I feel awful about one parenting choice I made when Jax was only a few days old. But I didn’t know any better, so I should really forgive myself and chalk it up as a lesson. Thanks for putting this quote out there; I’d never heard it before today.

  3. Kimberly M (@momgosomething) April 2, 2012 at 10:33 am #

    This post is just simply perfect. Love this.


  1. Depression and Anxiety Resources | Learned Happiness - November 17, 2013

    […] shoe to drop. Time Capsule – A HAWMC prompt post about what would be in my PPD time capsule. When We Know Better… – A HAWMC prompt with my favorite quote.  How does knowing better the second time around […]

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