Growing a human is a lot of work for our bodies to experience gracefully. And BEFORE you’ve gone through the whole birthing process and come out on the other side, it’s important to find adequate support and self care tools in order to nurture and take care of your body after baby arrives.
Why is this so crucial?
Because, in order to take care of your family and to learn how to become a mother (whether its your 1st, 2nd or 5th), you MUST TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF. Otherwise you and your family will feel the repercussions.
Here are some options to consider as a new mom before baby arrives…
1. Family & Friends: Enlist the ones closest to you to take on the mundane and daily chores that we often forget about. This is important to stay on top of especially when things get stressful transitioning with a new baby.
Duties that are perfect for family members and friends…
* Taking Car of Animals
* Entertaining Siblings
* Allowing time for Showers & Naps
2. Mother’s Helper/Night Nurse: This kind of support could mean the difference between getting a few more hours of sleep and walking around like a zombie throughout the day. One the leading causes of postpartum depression is lack of sleep so be sure to rest when baby sleeps and ask or help when you need it. Its not a sign of weakness if you ask for help. On the contrary, its a sign of strength to recognize when you need assistance and when to ask for it. So don’t be shy because the ones who love and care for you want to help and see you thrive.
3. Postpartum Doula: Again, please please please don’t be too proud or embarrassed to ask for support. Establishing a relationship and schedule ahead of time with a doula who specializes in postpartum care is money and time well spent. There is nothing more valuable than someone telling you you’re doing everything right. And if you have questions, you have someone with educated answers to guide you through the transition into motherhood.
4. Lactation Consultant: Breastfeeding can be challenging and to simply say it is a natural process is not fair to the many women who struggle with getting the hang of it. So if you are hurting, bleeding, or thinking about quitting altogether, please before you make any decisions contact an experienced consultant who can give you the tools for properly breastfeeding your newborn.
5. Counselor/Therapist: If your experience is more than overwhelming and your thoughts and feelings are consumed with fear, you may want to consider discussing those feelings with a trained professional who can provide you with the tools to find your way. Often becoming a new mom is filled with uncertainty and fear of messing up, but if you find yourself with unusual thought patterns or irrational fears, please reach out and get help. Again, its better to ask for help then to suffer in silence.
6. Integrative Health Professionals: Holistic professionals who specialize in Pre and PostNatal health and wellness are some of the most beneficial practitioners for moms who want to feel more grounded and balanced in the their body and mind. Not only are you making your own health a priority (which benefits your family as well) but you’re taking precious time for yourself and giving yourself a moment to breathe, reconnect with your body, and unwind from the stress of becoming a mom.
Here are a few (of many) Professionals who can help…
* Massage Therapists
* Physical Therapists
* Fitness Instructors (i.e. yoga, pilates, personal trainers)
7. New Mom’s Groups: Getting together with new moms who are experience similar trials and triumphs can be an empowering process. Not only can we learn so much from each other but we can feel good about the fact that we may of just said something to someone that just clicked for them. Being a new mom can be a lonely road sometimes and just getting out of the house for a few hours to share your uncharted experiences can be uplifting and enlightening for you and the whole group.
Places to start looking for meet ups for new moms…
* Community Centers
* Churches and Various Sanctuaries
* Independent Businesses for Expecting Families
* Non Profit Organizations
Most cities & towns hold weekly or monthly groups just for new moms, so try it out and ses if one fits what you’re looking for.
In short, please don’t be afraid, or too proud or stubborn, or even scared to ask for help. Because we all need our village raising our children from Day 1.
We need to be nurtured too. We need to fill the well so we can give it all we’ve got. Taking care of a baby, and our family, and our household, and ourselves takes time and patience to learn how to balance in the beginning. Sometimes it takes quite a while to really get good at it all. And even then, it’s not always consistent.
So do yourself and the ones you love a favor. Go easy on yourself and be good to yourself. Because you deserve it and so does your family.
For more information on how to find balance and support in your life, send me an email at francesmasterson [at] gmail [dot] com.
Disclaimer: The information on this site is for general informational purposes only. I am not a medical professional, nor do I give medical advice. These articles are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any conditions, but to educate and broaden the perspective as it pertains to holistic health and wellness. Please practice your own due diligence and research all techniques when applying these methods for personal use. Always speak with your Doctor, OB, Midwife, or Nurse Practitioner in regards to complimentary self-care