This week on Oct 19th I’m celebrating my 35th birthday and I thought it would be cool to go back in time and acknowledge the life experiences that helped me to become who I am today. I know I still have a lot to learn and polish, nevertheless, the past 35 years have been a heck of a ride and I think as an adult woman in her mid-thirties it’s a great exercise to learn from my mistakes and share what I’ve learned with other moms.
I have a kinda weird relationship with birthdays – when I was younger I loved celebrating my birthday and waited anxiously for that day. This was the best day of the year as I was the richest on that day! I remember, as a child, all of my aunts and uncles would give me money and I was so happy to go to the store and buy myself something that I wanted but couldn’t afford all year. For this reason, I loved having a large family!
Then something weird happened, I got married and my husband, being the humble and reserved guy that he is, he’s not so much into celebrating birthdays. In his family, they usually get together for a meal raise a toast and that’s about it.
So this year, I am going to work on being intentional about honoring my day and finding my own way to celebrate my life.
So let’s start with lesson # 1:
1. Trust your intuition
Every major decision I’ve made in my life was driven by this voice. Here are some examples, I grew up in Israel from age 6 to 21. When I was 17 years old I started dating a guy that I knew deep down inside wasn’t right for me. My young and teenager self, of course, denied it, but deep down I always knew he’s not right for me. So when he proposed to me, although I hesitated, it just felt wrong, and I said no. A month later my dad received his papers to come to Canada and we’ve left Israel. This was another thing I just knew right for me, as my soul was slowly dying in Israel. I truly believe that I’ve manifested this move through my dad, and thankfully my whole family is here with me as a result. This move helped me to get over this guy, and although it was heartbreaking at the time, I knew it had to be done. It literally felt like I’m getting over an addiction and I felt like I’m cleansing after a major and serious drug addiction. It was terrible but had to be done. I’m so glad I’m over him.
Two years later, I meet this guy who is a complete opposite to my ex. He’s calm, solid, grounded, confident, successful and so handsome!! This guy today is my husband and the father of my daughters. I’m not sure I’ve told this story here before or not, but this experience was also totally driven by my intuition, as I just knew he is going to be my husband after just one date. It just felt right.
Later on, my intuitive force led me to calling in my three girls at the right time for me. All of our three girls were planned by me, and I’m so grateful for my husband for never pushing or rushing me with this. Although he’d like to have more kids, after the third baby, I felt like I’m done. This guiding force had led me to explore and be curious about holistic health and also led me to hire a coach who’ve shown me what’s possible and encouraged me to pursue my dream of working with moms and help them heal holistically.
We all have this powerful force within us. This is our compass and our internal GPS system. I wish I knew more about this powerful force, and I wish my mom could expose me to this. Of course, I can’t blame her for something she herself didn’t know, which is why I am committed to learning and sharing this powerful gift with my girls.
2. Motherhood is humbling.
Up until becoming a mom, I thought I can do anything. I was absolutely convinced that I’m going to rock at motherhood and it’s going to be great. After my first baby was born you know what was the first thing I’ve done when we came back home from the hospital?
I cleaned my house and did laundry. So silly of me!
I rejected all help, caved in and isolated myself from pretty much everyone. You won’t believe this, but this year is actually the first year after having kids that I started walking around with my phone, not on silent. I was so consumed with doing things my way, and if it’s not then I’d get really, really upset.
Anyone familiar with mommy tantrums? Well, I had so many of them!!
Looking back, I now realize that I was still maturing, adulting and learning about myself and who I am in this world. This is one of the reasons I love motherhood so much, as this is the best personal development school we’ll ever have. Like my coach says, parenting is personal growth on steroids! Want it or not, you’ll grow. Especially if you want to do a good job as a mom, and I do.
Motherhood helped me to become less self-absorbed, less egoistic, less impulsive and more than anything, SLOW DOWN! My natural inclination is to zoom through things and do everything as fast as I can. Becoming a mom is teaching me day in and day out to slow down, pause and focus.
So many times I just want to get them out the door to be on time for school, or to put them to bed as soon as possible so that I have time for myself, or I’d rush to do all the logistics (like keep them fed, clean, and organized) only to see that they are humans and need an adult to show them the way and lead them in this life. I am that adult, so I had to get my act together and show up for my girls. I am still evolving here, but I am so proud of myself for really showing up for myself, my girls and what I’m creating in the world. This is a choice, please make the right one. No one can do this for you.
3. Every one of your kids will trigger that which you need to heal.
My oldest daughter has a very high emotional intelligence, which means she is very articulate in how she feels and she can put her feelings and emotions into words beautifully. We’ve noticed that since a very young age. She is a born communicator. But, she also has a victim mentality, a tendency to blame others, not take responsibility for her own actions and she’s struggling with doing hard things.
My middle daughter is bright and very smart academically, but she’s struggling with patience, self-control, self-regulation, she’s not great at communicating her needs (although she’s highly intuitive and sensitive to her surroundings). She has a tendency to anxiety and frantic in many ways.
My little one is still too young to show her true personality, but her recent hip surgery and all that came after that was a huge wake-up call for me. I was so naive to believe that we can go back to our lives as though nothing happened, boy was I wrong. Every day is a new challenge with her and I’m still learning how to help her heal, physically and emotionally.
Guess what, all the challenges my girls are going through are mine as well. In fact, the reason, I see these challenges is because we project our own soul sparks on them and they mirror them back to us. Through helping my girls get over their challenges, I am actually helping myself and proving to myself what I’m actually capable of. Like Dr. Shefali, author of The Conscious Parent says, raising our children is our opportunity to heal our own wounds and raise ourselves. When we parent, we are learning to parent and mother ourselves, which took me a long time to get!
4. I am not a superwoman.
WOW! That was a big one for me. Like I said earlier, motherhood is incredibly humbling and I realized very quickly that I cannot do this alone. They say it takes a village to raise a child, which is true. But it also takes a village to raise a mom. That young woman who is going through so many changes – physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.
Very quickly I’ve realized that I have so much responsibility on my hands, something I didn’t have loads of prior to becoming a mom. I pretty much only had myself to worry about. The burnout, exhaustion, fatigue, resentment, fear, anger, regret and other dark feelings were knocking on my door every single day!
I remember myself as a very happy and joyful, so whatever was going on didn’t feel right and didn’t feel like I am using my gifts and talents wisely. I had a soul ache to build a successful coaching career doing something I love, leading mothers to take care of themselves, balance their hormones, heal their bodies, stop feeling like there’s no time for them, like they don’t matter, stop feeling guilty for choosing themselves, to get out of their own way, lead their families with intention and show them that in this life, anything is possible. I have always revered the female body and I truly believe that as women we are divine beings.
But, first, I had to go through the difficult moments of the dark night of the soul, emerge out from there and then show others how to do the same. This was an opportunity for me to tap into being more resourceful and creative about how I make this dream of mine a reality. But, that wasn’t an easy task to accomplish. It still isn’t. If you are a mompreneur you know what I mean. Being a mom who values family, closeness, being present and nurture my home as an incubator to prevent future hurts and wounds as much as possible is not an easy task while also building a successful business.
So I had to make a very important choice. Lean on my husband financially in the beginning, so that I can do what I’ called to do with and for our kids, and with time as I felt like I’m getting out of the minutia of daily life – diapers, wiping asses, the constant feeding, cleaning and tidying up, I had to be uber intentional and deliberate about how I’m using my time.
First thing, we’ve decided to put our kids in childcare so that I can free up some of my own time to work on my dream. Then, I had to learn to delegate like a boss. I had to figure out all the things that need to be done around the house and see which were the things only I can do and which tasks could be easily outsourced.
First thing for me was cleaning. I like to have a clean house, but I hate cleaning. It is so time-consuming, but it sucks the life out of my soul. Yes, it costs money, but honestly, it is not as expensive as I thought it is. I found a young girl who cleans my house every other week, she also irons my kids’ dresses and does the laundry.
I also had to learn to ask for help and involve family and friends in taking care of the girls. This was a hard one as asking for help is often perceived as shameful and embarrassing (because I’m supposed to do it all just like our moms did). As though asking for help means admitting that I’m failing or not succeeding somehow.
Well, this is just a gigantic lie I was telling myself. I had to reframe what help means in my head and now believe that help is allowing other people to tap into the goodness of their heart. Helping someone else means serving God. By me asking for help I give opportunities to other people to support a young family who otherwise would struggle, the parents would fight constantly and the children would grow up wounded. I am not willing to risk that.
So I had to step outside of my comfort zone and ask. I asked for people to help me with meal trains, watch the kids, take them for a walk, watch them while I was on a call with a client for a couple of hours, while I went to exercise and move my body, while I went out to get a facial or do my nails. I refuse to believe that I can do it all by myself, I mean I could, but why would I?
I think that leaning on other people is a much more sustainable way to live. I want my girls to see that they are surrounded by other women, mothers, grandmothers, aunts, and friends and we all need each other. This also pushes me to give to my community as well because this is how reciprocity works. So if you feel like you are too proud to ask for help, please stop.
Vulnerability connects people whereas shame, fear, and judgment separate people from one another and as you know we need each other. So when you need help, reach your hand out and ask. Just ask.
5. Sustainable Motherhood (Radical self-care)
I feel like my life truly started after I became a mom, before that I didn’t really struggle, in fact, I felt like I was successful in most things I’ve done. I thought that I’m really good at taking care of myself and making magic happen. Until I became a mom.
If you’re a mom, you know what I mean. Having little people who are dependent on you 24/7 is draining emotionally, physically and mentally.
After baby #2, I’ve basically entered into crisis-mode also known as survival mode. Sleep, food, rest, fun, intimacy, girlfriends, sexy body, and all things I identified with were taken away from me. Lie. Because I wasn’t prepared for the shock and serious burnout that follows I have made a choice to put myself last. What a mistake.
This made me so miserable, negative, bitter and not fun to be around. My husband felt it, my kids felt it, and worst than anything, I knew it too. I didn’t recognize myself. I had a major identity crisis not knowing who I am anymore. One day I looked in the mirror and asked the woman I was looking at, who are you? What do you want? What is your soul asking for?
As a conscious mama, I decided to make a choice and put myself first. I come before everyone else because if I don’t everyone around me suffer. Putting yourself first doesn’t mean you are neglecting your responsibilities, all this means is that I have done a conscious and deliberate effort to show up and radically take care of myself.
For years I have been struggling with finding a sustainable eating plan that will work for me and my mommy life. I have tried so many different diets (Paleo, vegan, vegetarian, keto, intermittent fasting, you name it I’ve tried it all). None of them were sustainable for me as a woman, and as a mother because my kids didn’t eat what I wanted to eat.
This led me to learn more about how to feed myself as a woman, how to support my hormones and how to live in alignment with my cyclical rhythm. Which is what I teach my ladies inside of the Health Begins With Mom Mastery. This stuff has changed my life radically. Not only do I feel better, healthier and more vibrant. But I’ve been able to strengthen my relationship with my husband and kids as a result.
As mothers, we are the sun and everything in our homes revolves around us, we create an ecosystem in our homes so taking care of yourself is not luxurious or indulgent. It is intelligent, smart and life-changing. Investing in myself always gives me the highest returns on investments. Like investing in coaching, books, programs, masterminds, surrounding myself with like-minded people, and so on and so forth.
And there you have it! My 5 biggest lessons I’ve learned in my 35 years living on this planet. Of course, there are many more, but I feel like these ones are the most profound in terms of how I’ve changed as a result of owning the lesson and making the best of it.
I hope this has been helpful to you and if you resonate with anything I’ve shared today let me know, connect with me on FB or on Instagram I’m @doritpalvanov. And the biggest gift you can give me is to share the show, tell other mothers in your community about this podcast, or maybe share a particular show you resonated with. My mission is to help rise mothers and show them their powers as healers and leaders. The health of the world begins with us, moms, taking the stand for us and our families. Let’s heal the world, one mom at a time.
Sending you much love & healing,