FIRST THOUGHT: Zombie Moms
If you want to surprise a new mom, ask her how her recovery’s going instead of, “Is he sleeping through the night?” It takes at least a year to recover from pregnancy and childbirth, and most American mamas are expected to be back at their desk in a cool six weeks. In Japan, new moms partake in “ansei” at their family’s home. That word means peace and quiet. Latin American mamas get “la cuarentena,” which is a 40-day period of chill time during which family and friends help out. Postpartum recovery is no joke, so if you know a new mama bee or a mom of three, ask her—really ask her—how she’s healing from the trauma, preferably after gifting her with a massage.
WOMEN IN NUMBERS: 24 Percent
There’s a reason why I suggest not asking mama bears if the baby’s sleeping through the night: It takes more than a couple sunsets to get your little one in night-long dreamland. That’s one reason why 24 percent of postpartum moms only get three to four hours of sleep each night. Sleep deprivation’s no joke. As a new mom, you’ll hear all kinds of advice from the cashier at Red Lobster to the neighborhood Facebook group, and I’m here to give you mine. First: Don’t listen to advice. Second: Ask for help. You deserve it, damnit.
WOMAN TO WATCH: Andrea Savage, Actress
She’s the funniest woman on television right now. There, I said it. Actress Andrea Savage has been on Curb Your Enthusiasm, Step Brothers, The Hotwives and Veep. Ladies, ladies. She’s the genius behind and in front of my favorite comedy right now, I’m Sorry.
The semi-autobiographical show is in its second season, the first of which is on Netflix. Andrea not only stars in the show, but also writes it. She’s had an interest in acting since a young age, and after high school, she began to perform in venues around LA.
So when she finally set out to create a show, she was intentional about it. She knew this wasn’t going to be the classic shtick; you know, where the wife actually can’t stand the husband, where the wife is totally cool with not caring about her kid, where the wife leaves the jokes to the guys in her life.
Nope. Andrea’s show is about a relatable woman who has a seriously salacious sense of humor, has a solid marriage full of loving banter, and relishes all the angles of her identity. As a seasoned actress in the industry, Andrea recognizes that she has the power to do things differently. It’s one reason why she fosters a work environment where people can go home to their families for bed time. She purposely doesn’t write scenes that’d take place outside at night, so cast and crew don’t have to miss dinner to shoot a scene.
It’s one thing to say, sure, you can leave early to pick up your sick kid, and it’s another thing to actually be that person who leaves early to pick up her sick kid. Andrea shows that the best way to lead is by example. As Andrea puts it, she actually likes her family (crazy, huh?), which means she wants to see them every once in a while. So, she and her team hire people who also like their families and want to see them every once in a while.
Andrea’s created a show that reflects her own personal motherhood struggles, and we applaud her for it.
QUITE THE QUOTE
Andrea Savage said:
“I’m going to embrace doing it as me, as a woman, would do it, and I’m going to really make these hours mean something and stick to it. And it doesn’t have to be run the way it’s always been run, and I’m in a position to make those decisions now, and I’m going to take the opportunity.”