Being a new mom can be really stressful. That too, if you are a first time mom, it is not going to be easy. I remember my time as a first time new mom and it was not a very good experience. I would burn out myself to be a perfect mother, a perfect wife, a perfect homemaker. But most of the times I failed and felt guilty all the time. I was on the edge of being depressed. But, I guess, I was strong enough to cope with it and come out with flying colors.
At the same time, I have seen mothers not doing great and blaming everyone else and themselves, for not being a perfect mother. This needs to be stopped. Being a new mom is not easy. As they say ‘it takes a village to raise a child’ and hell it is true. New moms need to know that, whatever they are doing for their kids is OK. Whatever efforts they are putting is enough. No one is perfect in the world and a perfect mother or a perfect child is a myth. Whoever says they have perfect kids or they are perfect parents are lying.
Motherhood is all about learning with the baby. You learn in the process of raising a child. Yes, you will make mistakes, but they will be ok. Those mistakes are a part of your motherhood journey. Remember whatever you are doing for the baby, is for his/her best interest. Stop blaming yourself for everything.
However, when I had my second baby, I knew what to do. I knew how important it was, to think about myself too and not just the baby. How important it was, to take care of myself too and not just the baby. How important it was, to do everything to maintain my sanity because only a happy mother can raise a happy child.
So here are a few things I did. No, I did not do all of them, but they were definitely on my list. So go ahead and indulge yourself with a few of them, and see if it helps you in any way.
⦁ My doctor encouraged me to meditate and join Yoga classes, which helped me a lot in two different ways. One, it helped me physically, calmed my senses, made my trimesters easy. Two, I met many fellow mother-to-be’s and spent time chatting and sharing experiences.
⦁ I never realized the importance of spending time with myself before I had a baby. So my advice to all new moms or mom-to-be’s is, make sure and do whatever you can, to spend some time alone. Ponder over silly things, go watch a movie alone, go shopping, read a book, take a solo trip, visit a place you always wanted to, check a few things off your bucket list. You will see what wonders it does to your health and how happy it will make you and fill you with new found enthusiasm and energy. (Doctor’s advice is a must)
⦁ Visit your family, your cousins, your favorite people, your mom, your dad, your brother/sister. Spend time with them. Let them take care of you. talk your heart out with them. Share your fears, your agonies, your worries. Let yourself go back to your childhood.
⦁ It is a well known fact and no one can deny it, that after you have a baby, you spend more time with your child than your spouse. Having a baby is a life changing experience. Relationships change. Your camaraderie with your spouse is going to change. So go ahead, and plan a date night to rejuvenate your love life. If you already have a baby, arrange a nanny or your family or friend, and go on a candle light dinner, watch a romantic movie, do whatever makes both of you happy and rekindle that romance.
⦁ We all know, women love to shop, so go ahead and pamper yourself with all the things you might need after the baby or just spend some moolah and shop till you drop. Retail therapy is the best kind of therapy.
⦁ Cook some thing nice for yourself. We always cook for others. We cook what our husbands like or children or family and we adapt their taste and forget what we like to eat. So go ahead and bake some cake or cook your kind of pasta and hog on. The aroma of baking is the best kind of aroma your house can have.
⦁ A day out with friends can be really relaxing. Leave your kids with the husband and go ahead and take a day off with your friends.
⦁ Reading is always a good option and there is no better friend than a good book. Be it fiction, autobiography, fashion/food/travel blogs, history. Whatever is your taste in books, go grab one.
⦁ Fill your tub with warm water, put a generous amount of your favorite body wash, light some scented candles, turn on your favorite playlist, keep a bottle of wine or that cup of tea or coffee, and sink into that luxurious bubble bath for hours. Forget about the world. If you have kids, put them to sleep or just let your husband take care of them and just give your body this treat.
⦁ Think about the positive things in your life. Sit alone and count your blessings and thank God for them.
⦁ Netflix can be quite addictive, but if you have time on your hands, go ahead and watch whatever you like.
⦁ Fill your life with positive people. Make sure you cut negative friends or judgmental people from your life. They are no good to you and will only cause stress to you in future. So without thinking twice, distance yourself from negative people. Talk and take advice from people who understand you and help you stay positive.
⦁ Before and after you have a baby, make sure to pamper your self with a saloon visit. color those hair, get a new haircut, it helps to give a new perspective to yourself and life. Get a massage or visit your favorite spa.
⦁ Allow yourself more time to get things done.
⦁ Sit in the balcony, grab a cup of tea/coffee and do nothing. Just relax and enjoy the silence.
⦁ Make friends with fellow moms. Share your experiences , joys and failures. They will understand you because they must be going through the same and will never judge you.
⦁ Do not stress about your failures. It is ok to make mistakes. Parenting is all about making mistakes and learning from them. Stop feeling guilty.
⦁ Maintain a journal. If you can not open up easily in front of anyone else, just write everything down in a diary. It will help you vent out and will make you feel lighter.
⦁ Arrange for your kids and take that solo trip you always wanted to take or even better plan a trip with your friends. You have no idea how liberating it is to travel alone or with friends. Give it a try.
⦁ Create a hobby and make time for it.
⦁ Hit a gym, as and when your gynecologist recommends. Nothing feels better than to work that sweat out in the gym and go back to a toned body or just a fitter version of yourself.
⦁ If you can not go to a gym, go for midnight or evening walks or runs.
Motherhood is beautiful, but it is also a fact that we moms give all of our self to it and often end up neglecting ourselves. My first pregnancy was like that. I gave my everything to the baby and ended up being cranky, sad, depressed and messed up all the time. But when I became mother for the second time, I made sure, I paid attention to myself too. Because as they say ‘only a happy mother can raise happy children’.
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