Reframing Our Expectations
On Timelines

Our parenting journey contains a lot of timelines that begin in pregnancy and continue throughout motherhood. There are timelines for baby development in utero, healing after birth, our children's development, the six weeks check timeline and the timelines we give ourselves for healing. Postpartum even has different timelines. Jenna Somich offers a way of reframing our expectations on timelines to keep us present.

By Jenna Somich


Hello everybody, Jenna Somich here, I am a fitness professional. So I am a coach, and a personal trainer. And I work with those who are prenatal, postpartum, or beyond. And today I want to talk about timelines.


I feel like in the beginning of our parenting journey, a lot of our focus is on timelines. Timelines for healing timelines for our children’s development. There’s such a focus on it. So what are some timelines that jump into your mind when I talk about postpartum? Maybe it’s that six week check, you know, that six week OB or midwife check where you get the all clear, or whatever that means to return to life…that six week check.


Some timelines I’ve heard in postpartum are of course, the six week check. I’ve also heard that immediate postpartum was for the first year post birth. I heard it was for two years post birth. I heard two years post nursing if you did that, which could be a very long time, perhaps. And then I also heard that postpartum is forever.


When I hear these timelines, I understand that they are often put forth to be helpful to help guide mothers in understanding expectations around healing during different points. But I also feel like the timelines can be unhelpful. And I’m going to explain a little bit more about why I feel that way.


When we are focused on those timelines like, “Okay, I want to get to one year, you know, the first birthday, two years post birth,” whatever it may be, we’re always looking forward, we’re not able to be present in the now and the experience we’re having in the moment or moments. Also, when we reach that timeline, the end of the timeline, if we don’t feel like we have arrived in the way that we thought we ought to, it can lead us to feeling like we failed, something was wrong, or we did something wrong. And that’s not necessarily true.


I heard something from one of my clients during a group class, when I was about 10 months post birth. What she said to me, it really stuck with me. She said, “the further from birth that I get, the better I feel.” And I just love that idea, because it doesn’t set us up for always looking forward. It allows us to be present in the experience that we’re having, while acknowledging that things will change as we go day by day, week by week, month by month. Also, it doesn’t set us up to feel like okay, I have arrived at the end of this timeline but I still feel like I’m lacking.


I love it because it points to the fact that you can continue to heal. You can continue to build strength. You can continue to build more strength than you ever had before. Whether that is physical strength, fortitude, mental fortitude, personal development…there is no endpoint, you get to decide.


And also I loved it as well, because it doesn’t identify someone as being postpartum for the rest of their life. Unless they want to identify as being postpartum for the rest of their life. I know some people can feel like identifying as postpartum for the rest of their life, if they no longer feel that way in their body can be constraining.


So the idea that the further from birth you get, the better you feel, seems so open ended and free, but also acknowledging that it is a process, but also a process that doesn’t have to end if you don’t want it to.


So I just wanted to share that with you, and invite you to pull it into your day to day, your movement routine, or perhaps your self care routine. Noticing if you feel more integrated. The more experience you have, in this space, in this season. I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to send me a message on Instagram @jennasomich. Thanks for listening

Jenna Somich began her career as a Personal Trainer and Coach at a gym in LA, where she received her CrossFit Level 1 certificate before becoming a Trainer and Coach full-time. She worked with all individuals but was extremely passionate about working with women, pre-teens, and teens. Upon moving to Raleigh, NC where she currently resides, she expanded her knowledge by becoming certified as a BIRTHFIT Coach and was able to coach countless Moms through their experiences and transitions of pregnancy, birth, postpartum and beyond. Jenna has completed the Active Life Immersion Program, the The Pelvic Health, Pain, and Performance Intensive by RX Physio, the HAES Trainer Intensive led by Brit Guerin at Current Wellness. and is currently in the process of completing the Girls Gone Strong Pre/Post Natal course, as well at the Menopause For Athletes course by Dr. Stacy Sims. Jenna’s movement approach with her client’s is very much centered around the unique individual in front of her. She strives to help support individuals in building the strength that already lives within them. Jenna supports individuals at Current Wellness as well as at Neuse River CrossFit, both located in Raleigh, NC.

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