Not So Smug Now blogger Cat Sims is taking on the ultimate hot yoga challenge to raise awareness of postnatal depression
When it comes to mental health, we all know that honesty is the best policy – but speaking out can be hard.
So thank goodness for Cat Sims, the mum and blogger behind Not So Smug Now, who has won legions of fans for her truthful account of living with depression from the age of 27, including postnatal depression after the birth of her daughter.
Known as #thenobullmama, Cat lifts back the curtain of secrecy to show that mental health problems aren’t shameful and should be treated like any other illness – and it doesn’t make you a bad mother for suffering with them.
But she’s not just talking – she’s doing. On 26 April 2018, the blogger is completing five hot yoga sessions in one day (phew!) at Hot Yoga House in Eastcote to raise money for Cocoon Family Support - a London based charity supporting mothers and families affected by postnatal depression.
Here’s what Cat had to say about her #hotformentalhealth challenge…
“When my first baby was nine months old, I collapsed. Physically, emotionally, mentally. I folded in on myself and sobbed until I admitted that I couldn’t do it, that I felt I was doing it all wrong, that I was worried I didn’t love her how I was supposed to love her. What I thought was the end of the world and my biggest failure turned out, eventually, to be the beginning but I didn’t know that then. What I did know, after a trip to the GP, was that I was suffering from post-natal depression.
“It’s an insidious, nuanced illness that carries with it extra levels of shame and guilt because, after all, isn’t motherhood supposed to be the most natural thing in the world? What kind of human, woman, mother are you if you can’t look after your own child without crumbling into a soggy pile of emotional chaos? It’s this that prevents women from talking about it openly. Instead, it’s a secret illness that we all hide and cover over with a facade that’s exhausting to maintain and not great for recovery either.
“Well, not anymore. I’m on a mission to shout about postnatal depression and other mental health issues surrounding pregnancy and motherhood so that we can all start to feel braver about coming forward. Postnatal depression is not a weakness or a sign of failure; it’s an illness, a real one and one that isn’t just miserable for mothers dealing with it but devastating for families too. It needs to be an open discussion and I’ll happily bang on about it until it is.”
>> To donate to #hotformentalhealth, visit the Hot For Mental Health donation page. You can follow Cat's challenge at notsosmugnow.com and on Instagram @notsosmugnow