Motherhood represents a new stage in a woman’s life, and as such, it brings a plethora of physical and emotional changes. You’re adapting to your new life as a mama and you’re learning everything there is to know about caring for your newborn. You are also sharing this amazing experience with your partner as you’re getting used to the idea of a changed family unit.
While there’s no doubt that this is one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences, it takes time until the mother is able to bounce back and regain her strength. For that to happen, self-care should be on the top of any new mom’s list of priorities. Here are some postpartum tips you should implement in your self-care routine for the first couple of months after giving birth.
Get Proper Nutrition
The first couple of months after giving birth can be quite exhausting for a new mom, so you’ll need to eat foods that will keep you full of energy while caring for your baby and functioning on a tight schedule. Make sure your postpartum diet is balanced. Make sure to drink lots of water and eat a mix of complex carbs and proteins like eggs, smoothies, oatmeal, and cereals.
Eat several smaller meals and snacks instead of eating three large meals, and keep your fridge full of healthy foods to maintain your energy levels throughout the day. Going on a diet is not advisable, at least until you’ve completely recovered from childbirth and gotten a green light from your doctor, especially if you’re planning on breastfeeding.
Ask for Help
Handling this new role by yourself can be quite overwhelming, especially if you just had your first child and everything’s still new to you. While you may feel like you have to do everything on your own, there’s really no need for too much pressure. Caring for a baby involves a lot of work, so do as much as you can the best way you can, but remember to keep your hopes and expectations realistic. Create a plan you can stick to, but keep it flexible.
Also, don’t think twice about asking for help from friends or family. Chances are, they’ll be glad to help out any way they can. Moreover, you can hire someone to take care of your household chores while you take care of the baby. Hiring a helper will take some load off your shoulders and give you peace of mind in moments when you’re feeling like you’ve got too much on your plate, enabling you to focus more on your child and things that really matter.
Carve Out ‘Me Time’
Although you may feel like you should be spending every waking moment with your newborn, you need to realize that your health and wellness are equally important. It’s only after you’ve taken care of yourself that you can take proper care of your baby, so don’t feel like you need to put yourself on the back burner. Instead, do something for yourself every once in a while.
Acknowledge any negative feelings you might have but focus on the positive ones. Boost your energy levels by doing some easy postnatal exercises, and reconnect with your partner as well. Although putting yourself and your needs first will be difficult in the beginning, don’t feel guilty about spending some time alone—it will give you peace of mind and enable you to take better care of others.
When and how long you and your partner will be sleeping will be largely dictated by your little one, mainly due to their sleep schedule. You can expect them to wake up every three hours, which is when you’ll need to change them and feed them again.
Obviously, getting the recommended 8 hours of sleep comes as a challenge now. Try sleeping whenever your baby sleeps and don’t hesitate to delegate if it will free up some time you can use to take care of the baby and yourself.
Getting enough rest, ensuring proper nutrition, asking for help, and carving out some ‘me time’ even in the tightest of schedules are crucial for preserving one’s health and wellness.