Caring for a newborn baby while recovering from childbirth can be a challenge.
Juggling the constant demands of a new baby (feeding, clothing, bathing, changing diapers, etc) and making sure that your needs are met as well can feel utterly impossible some days.
With my last two children, I made them a priority. I put self care and my marriage last.
That led to (quick) burnout.
Going into this pregnancy, I knew that this would be my last baby. I didn’t want to end my baby years on burnout, so I made a decision to do things differently. Everyone warned me that having another child would mean a little less of me going around.
I understand the demands that parenting places on us, but honestly sometimes the demands that we “fall short of” are unrealistic ones that we put on ourselves. Having children does not mean that we have to run ourselves into the ground.
Here are a few ways that self care can exist….even with a newborn in tow.
Ya’ll, I’m preaching to the choir. 5 days after giving birth, I was diagnosed with bells palsy. At 3 weeks postpartum, half of my face is still numb. One consistent piece of advice I’ve been getting is to rest.
Simple enough right?
Bells palsy comes from the stress your body goes under in pregnancy and/or childbirth. It’s tough to rest when you have a newborn right?
If you are like me, you see that there is always something that needs to get done. Resting means that you care enough about your body to let those things go. It will get done.
I love some pjs and leggings like most moms. I love that leggings are forgiving on my body while I slowly make my way back into pre-pregnancy clothes.
I have no shame throwing on something comfy and running into the store—that is until I run into someone I know and then I’m embarrassed about my appearance.
Now I’m not saying that you have to put on a full face of makeup and dress like you’re going on a dinner date, but taking a few extra minutes to spruce yourself up before leaving the house will do a number for your self-esteem and crashing hormones.
Self Care= Finding Joy
What brings you joy??
Losing sleep for nights on end can turn you into a crazy person (if you let it).
Instead of obsessing over the things you haven’t done, use this time to do things that bring YOU joy.
Finish a book that you’ve been dying to finish.
Get a manicure & pedicure.
Diffuse your favorite essential oils. My favorites are from Young Living: Gentle Baby, Joy & Lavender.
Let Go of Unrealistic Expectations
Before bringing baby #3 into the world, I already struggled. I struggled with balancing the role of a great mom, wife and employee. I struggled with having my home look immaculate at all times.
After bringing home my son, I was faced with a few health challenges. Resting my body meant letting some things go.
I’ll admit it. I’m pretty stubborn.
The one thing I’m not willing to let go of is laundry. It piles up all on its own and you can never seem to catch up. So I do a lot of laundry. I don’t always fold it or put it away, but I try to do a few loads every day (or every other day).
The rest of the household chores come when I have the energy. Or if someone offers to help, I let them.
I finally let go of the guilt. I’m not perfect.
And Super woman does not exist. Realistically, my children will grown up and learn to pick up after themselves. Keeping my home neat is a priority, however running myself into the ground, losing sleep & stressing over every detail is not.
There are so many ways that busy moms can indulge in self care. The important thing is to make time for yourself so that you can be your best you for your family. Let go of the mama guilt and find a way to take care of you today!!
What’s your favorite way to self care?