New Mom Tip: Take Care of Yourself
It’s normal to feel stressed and overwhelmed when bringing a new baby home. Add to that hormone fluctuations and the fact that you’re recovering, and being a new mom can feel like a huge undertaking. Following are some ways to take care of yourself after the new baby arrives.
First, remember that you’re not the only one to feel like this. You may be feeling exhausted, worn out and less than sane, or a combination of these. It’s a phase – like all things, it’s temporary. Your baby will begin to sleep through the night. You will get more sleep. You will get through it. Knowing that you’re not alone can help to bring a light to the situation and help make things better, or at least more tolerable. Talk to other new moms, find a support group in your area, or even talk to your own mom for reassurance and support.
Second, get enough rest. ‘Sleep when your baby sleeps’ isn’t just something people say – it’s advice worth following. When your baby naps, try laying down and resting. Even if you don’t sleep, a little down time can help you to relax and refresh for the rest of the day. Also, try going to bed when your little one does, at least once in a while. If your baby’s in bed by 8 p.m., try going to bed shortly afterward (even if it’s still light out and you have mountains of laundry to do). Get the rest you need, and those nights where you are up late won’t seem so bad.
Third, don’t be afraid to ask for help. You don’t have to do it alone – ask for help. Ask a neighbor or friend to baby sit, even just for a half hour, so that you can take a nap or go to the grocery store. Most people would be more than willing to help out a new mom – and to spend time with a new baby!
Finally, take some time for yourself. Take a walk, go to the library and check out a book or DVD, or go get your nails done. Even just a half hour of ‘me’ time can help make you feel better and put things into perspective. Remember, you’re a woman too – not just a mom.