When you’re expecting it’s all about the baby! You’ve spent the last 9 months preparing for and thinking about this huge life change. Now that your little one has made the transition to your arms they are your first priority.
Welcoming a new baby changes everything and the first few months can be brutal. Between sleepless nights and painful nursing its easy to fade into the shuffle of meeting your newborn’s needs. But, if you want to care for them well it helps to care for you, too! Here are a few things that can help you feel more like yourself again as you adjust to your new normal.
Prep- A couple of weeks before your due date, give your self a little pampering. Get a trim, paint your nails, and shave (with assistance if needed!) It will be nice to have these self-care needs taken care of while you heal. Who knows when you’ll get another chance to sit in the salon chair uninterrupted!
Get Ready– When you have a new baby, full glam every day isn’t realistic, but getting yourself ready on a regular basis just makes you feel more human. It doesn’t need to be drastic. Have a few essentials on hand and take a couple minutes for yourself in the mirror. Make a routine that takes less than five minutes. Find some no- fuss hairstyles that you like and use time saving products. I like a simple braid, a BB cream, some tinted lip balm and a coat of mascara. If you can get some fake lashes, even better!
Get a Postpartum Wardrobe- While it’s true enough that you can still wear your maternity clothes, having some post-partum clothing that you like will make you feel more you! Though you could try put on your pre-baby wardrobe right away, I don’t recommend it. Things probably won’t fit the same so invest in items that are still your style but, more forgiving. Go for some nice yoga pants and soft tees, leggings and cotton tunics, or pretty sundresses. Think comfy but not pajamas. Choose black and solid colors, or neutral patterns that will be easy to mix and match. The key is to roll out of bed without looking like we rolled out of bed! 🙂
Jam Out- Just because you’re a mom now doesn’t mean you have to listen to Old Mac Donald on a loop until your ready to run away. Let your favorite music be the background to your day. For me, it really improves my mood! Got something that makes you dance? Put it on and tackle that big pile of dreft-washed onesies, bibs, and blankets. Trying to put the baby down for a nap? You don’t want you little angel to get used to a silent house! Put on something soothing for you both.
Go Out- Make a couple of bottles and get a trusted baby sitter and go out to eat with your husband. An hour or two away from the house you have been cooped up in will be good for you! No baby sitter? Go out anyway and take the baby with you. We liked to go to the mall, walk around and maybe get a quick bite. The baby would be lulled to sleep on the car ride over and usually stayed asleep as we strolled along with the carriage. It wasn’t the most exciting excursion and we mostly just window-shopped but, in the earlier months it was a quick and easy outing.
Socialize- One way I did this was to have a Sip & See. Sip & Sees are great because it gets everyone over at once to see baby on moms terms. When my son was a few weeks old I invited close friends and family over who hadn’t met him yet. We kept it simple with minimal blue decor and easy food. Instead of people stopping by during nap time or having too many visitors they come when the house is clean and you are presentable. It’s an opportunity to dress up and catch up!
Get Physical- If you’re like me you may have spent much of the last trimester with your feet up! It will feel great to get your body moving again. Take it easy and start slow. Take the baby strolling if the weather is good or do a gentle yoga flow. Being physical not only helps to heal your body but clears your mind as well. Just make sure you go to your postnatal appointment and get cleared before starting an exercise program!
Do What You Love- Take your hobby back up! For me it was writing. The baby brain really got to me and made it nearly impossible for me to process my thoughts. You can’t force inspiration and I’ve learned that sometimes its easier to just let it go and come back to it later. I was happy to have allowed myself a little hiatus (about 10 weeks) surrounding my son’s birth. Once he was here and I gave myself some time to adjust I was able to use the creative energy I was putting into him back into my writing. It is such a part of who I am that doing it again felt amazing!
Do The Thing- Whatever it was that you missed so much when you were pregnant do it! Go out for sushi, drink a glass of your favorite wine, sleep on your stomach! It so often is the little pleasures in life that make it sweet.
Be Patient- Though these tips can help you begin to feel like yourself again after baby, things will never really be the same. Having a baby is a joy and a blessing but be realistic about the fact that things are not going to be normal right away! Try to be patient with yourself, your husband, and your other children as you all learn to adjust to a new way of life with an additional family member. You’ve just been through a lot so cut yourself some slack, Mama and give yourself some love! You deserve it!
What did you do that made you feel like yourself again after baby? Comment below and share some ideas!