May is National Maternal Mental Health Month

Nationally, Maternal Mental Health Month is recognized in May every year. This month aims to raise awareness for mothers’ mental health before, during, and after pregnancy. This is important, especially in Wyoming. According to the new report from the Wyoming Maternal Mortality Review Committee (MMRC), “[o]ne in every five new moms reported depression before and during pregnancy, and 15% indicated they experienced symptoms of postpartum depression.” As our state begins to focus on statewide mental health, we hope decision-makers will be attentive to Wyoming mothers.

Raw, Beautiful, Overwhelming: Stories of Maternal Health

In partnership with Tales at the Taphouse and the Albany County Public Library, the Wyoming Women’s Foundation hosted a storytelling event at the Albany County Library on May 18. Pregnant women, new mothers, empty nest mothers, nontraditional mothers, and community members came together to listen to Wyoming stories about motherhood.

During the event, four pre-selected storytellers and one ‘wild card’ storyteller spoke about their triumphs and tribulations with motherhood.

Lena Newlin (above) recited a piece called “Welcome to Parenting World”, which broached hard subjects about parenting with ever-present humor.

Meghan Lucas (above) told the story of her childhood and her own mother wound, juxtaposed, and sometimes coupled with, the new life growing inside of her.

Hollie Sambrooks (above) pondered why negative, impactful memories often come to mind first. In her story, she likened motherhood to a painting with painful memories, happy moments, and tiny details making up a beautiful picture.

Dawn Swenson (above) shared stories of her children, blood-related or otherwise, and her experience as a deaf person navigating motherhood.

Thank you!

We want to thank everyone who attended the event—all 50+ of you! We would also like to thank Rose Curtis, founder of Tales at the Taphouse. These events, rooted in community building, are so important to our work at the Women’s Foundation. Lastly, we would like to thank American Sign Language interpreter Esther Hartsky for her work at the event.

After our win at the Legislature this year, it was invigorating to see real Wyoming mothers—and hear how important healthcare is for all of us.

Lastly, thank you for your support of the Wyoming Women’s Foundation!

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