It can be hard for a new mother to adjust to life after giving birth. Even if you thought you had been entirely prepared before your baby arrived, now that he or she is here, everything has changed. This can often feel overwhelming, and you might even be feeling scared because you are responsible for an entire human being.
The most important thing to remember at this point is that you need to take care of yourself. Although you will have a baby to think about, your own health, happiness, and recovery (your body has just gone through a trauma, whether you had a natural birth of a c-section); you will be able to take care of your newborn much better if you are also taking care of yourself. Here are some ways to do it.
If your partner is back at work and you find yourself alone with the baby a lot of the time, you might feel down at times. Even if you are loving being a mother, it can still get lonely and stressful. A great idea is to treat yourself to something exciting or beautiful to make your day a little more interesting.
Subscription boxes from scentmagic.com are a wonderful idea. This will give you something to look forward to each month, and because it’s a pampering gift, it will make you feel very special. A magazine subscription could be another good idea. Alternatively, send yourself some flowers, enjoy a soak in the tub with essential oils (when you have time), order takeout, download a movie you’ve been wanting to watch, or whatever else is going to feel like a treat and a reward.
Get Plenty of Rest
Assuming you aren’t going back to work immediately after you have your baby, and you have time to rest, take the opportunity. They say you should sleep when the baby sleeps, and this is a good rule of thumb to follow, as sleepless nights and broken sleep are not conducive to great self-care.
The problem some mothers find is they want to get things done around the house when their baby is napping; they want to clean, cook meals in advance, tidy up, take a shower, and do all the things they don’t have the chance to do when the little one is awake. The only problem is, that means you won’t have any time to sleep at all. If you’re busy when baby is sleeping and you need to be awake when they’re awake, when are you going to sleep?
No one is going to mind a bit of mess or the fact your hair needs washing or anything else. They will understand. So sleep when the baby sleeps and get as much rest as possible.
Ask for Help
Having a baby is hard, especially if this is your first and you don’t know what to expect (but even if you’ve had others, each baby is individual and has their own personality, so you could still be taken by surprise), and you shouldn’t be expected to do it all by yourself. Don’t try to. Instead, ask for help. Your friends and family will be waiting to hear you say the words, and they will be ready to help in any way they can.
It’s fine to admit you’re struggling; everyone does. Even those who look like ‘natural mothers’ will have hard times when they just don’t know what to do or how to act. Asking for help means you’ll get help, and this will make all the difference.