For most moms, juggling multiple responsibilities at once is engrained into daily life. From caring for your children, maintaining a household, holding down a career and so much more—it can often feel impossible to say no. New mom, author, and journalist Elaine Welteroth also experienced this same wave of emotion during her journey to becoming a new mom. But now, she's doing things differently and passing that along to other women.

Welteroth recently partnered with Pure Leaf for its “No” Grants initiative, which offers a total of $400,000 in grants to help support mothers ready to say “no,” so they can start saying “yes” to what matters most to them. 

"My journey of 'no' in motherhood, started before my baby even entered the world. I felt underserved by the current medical system and simply opted out. I went with a Black midwife and had a home birth," Elaine Welteroth shares. "They made me feel safe and protected, and made my birthing experience feel incredibly sacred. That was my first real experience in the power of 'no' as a mom, and how important it is when something isn't serving you. It gave me the confidence to seek out the support I need as a mother, not just for me, but for my whole family."

The author and journalist further recalls how it was initially very scary to go against the norms—if there is such a thing—when it comes to motherhood. But that decision would be the starting point for her being able to properly advocate for herself and seek out the things that serve her as a mother and wife.

"You have the agency to define the type of motherhood journey that works best for you and your family. That agency is empowerment. It all starts with the courage and confidence to say 'no.' But in order to have that courage, you also need the right type of support," states Welteroth.

With the Pure Leaf "No" Grants program, it's more than just telling mothers to reclaim their time through empowering messages. It also gives them added financial support to free up their time in a way that best serves them, so they can better show up for themselves. Moms need more than just a prescriptive call to action—that, in the end, may not even serve them. We all have a different set of circumstances, and what may feel like support to one mom, may be the same for the next.

"I love this program so much because it puts tangible funds and resources in the hands of moms all over the country, so they can determine how they want to use the money to say no to what is no longer serving them, and say yes to what it," she says. "For some, it may be used to outsource a housekeeper or childcare. It may be used for a much-needed self-care day or girls' night out. It's an opportunity for moms to really refill their cups. You can't truly serve your family if you are on empty."

For the Washington Post "MaterniTea" streaming series host, trying to offer a one-size fits-all advice standard to mothers isn't something she feels comfortable doing. Instead, she uses her platforms to share information and resources that she has access to, as well as start conversations so that women don't feel alone.

"I do what I can from where I am. By starting conversations, it creates a safe and supportive environment," she explains. "That's honestly why I started "MaterniTea" when I was pregnant. There's so much that people don't tell you when it comes to the expansion of bringing a child into this world and the responsibility that comes with that. There's so much to talk about and so much that we go through. So often women feel like they're meant to go through it all in silence. So, I started the platform to break that silence."