I’m Terra LaRock, a child, family, and school psychologist and mother of two. In 2015, I began publicly speaking about my harrowing experience with postpartum depression/OCD following the birth of my first child. As I continued to speak and write about my mental health journey and mindfulness, women from around the world flooded my inbox saying, “This is me too,” and asking how I recovered.
As a mental health provider, I was overcome with shame. I felt like if I couldn’t access my own toolkit to help myself, how could I possibly help anyone else?
I spent the next few years responding to emails and messages about my experience as I continued to dive deeper into my healing. The turning point in my emotional wellbeing happened when I adopted a mindfulness practice, something I had been using with my students and families for years. My postpartum struggles made me realize just how magical this act of self-care was.
I became quite obsessed with mindfulness and knew that I had to share this passion with the world. Mindfulness was the very thing that woke me up. It showed me that I was carrying all these layers—depression, anxiety, fear—but I didn’t have to bear them on my own. It gave me the awareness to realize that I was really suffering and to seek the professional help I needed. It also helped me notice the beautiful moments in motherhood and in my life, cultivate self-compassion, and realize that my thoughts were not the ultimate sources of truth.
I felt so compelled to serve mothers. I knew that our society needed to shift the conversation from what we need in motherhood to how we want to be in motherhood.
So I took that pain and turned it into something beautiful: I founded a maternal wellness company called Mindful Mamas in 2018. Since then, my passion for helping mamas has grown, and on March 19, 2020, Mindful Mamas released a self-care and mindfulness app for mothers and mothers-to-be.
The Mindful Mamas app is not like anything else on the mindfulness market today. We offer a personalized experience for mothers in every stage of motherhood, because let’s face it, motherhood is not one size fits all. What one mom needs while she navigates teenage years is much different than what a mother in her 4th trimester needs.
Mindfulness has been shown to help reduce stress, worry, anxiety, and depression; It helps you strengthen relationships with yourself and the ones you love; It helps you enjoy deeper, longer and more rejuvenating rest. I am so excited to be able to share these benefits with mamas from all walks of life.
As mothers, we get pulled in 100 different directions throughout the day. At Mindful Mamas, we teach mamas how to take the formal practice of mediation “off the mat” so to speak and actually use it in the midst of everyday mamahood. Through mindfulness I realized that taking care of myself was a big part of taking care of my children. Self-care isn’t selfish.
Mindfulness has become an integral part of my daily life (and now my family’s daily life too). I use it all the time: while washing dishes, during meetings with the team, in the shower, during tantrums, etc. It is really quite incredible to look back on the challenging days when my daughter was born. Those were the hardest, most rigorous days of my life, but that path led me to where I am now: filled with compassion, gratitude, and a whole lot of love.