The Five New Mom Mantras by Claudine Wolk
Motherhood is a whole new world.
Here are some Ideas to help navigate it and make it a bit easier.
Mantra Number One: Manage Your Visitors
Naturally, everyone will want to come and see the baby. Most new moms would agree that there are two kinds of baby visitors. Type number one is the baby visitor who wants to see you and the baby and brings a gift. The type-two visitor is the visitor who has come for an outing and wants to entertained. Embrace number one, shun number two!
If feels of guilt creep in at denying visitors to your home in the early weeks, remember that you’ve just had a major procedure that required hospitalization. Speak up and do what is best for you! If you are up for visitors and would like to see people that is ok, too, just make sure the visits are on your terms.
Mantra Number Two: Take It Slow
A baby makes three and makes the household tasks that used to be easy and quick a bit more complicated. Remind yourself in the early weeks that your job is to care for your baby and yourself. That’s it. When you do feel up to a few household tasks, take it slow. Break up chores into individual tasks and do a bit at a time. The dust can wait.
Mantra Number Three: Never Pass Up a Nap
Never pass up a nap to clean in those early weeks. You are getting less sleep and it is broken sleep. Naps are your lifeline. Naps also might help your love life. A nap might rejuvenate you so that you might have the energy to renew your love life with your partner at the right time. Embrace your naps – even after the baby gets bigger!
Mantra Number Four: This Too Shall Pass
After two weeks of your new life with a baby, you may start to feel it. The after-pregnancy euphoria may be wearing off and it might hit you that life will never be the same as it was, that you are responsible for another human being for (at least) 18 more years. All parents don’t admit it, but this exact thought has crossed their minds, believe me. What eventually gets replaced with this scary thought is the joy of having this new person in your life. There will come a time when you cannot imagine life without your new baby. Until then, take it easy on yourself. Get as much sleep as you can, take it day by day, call your mom (or special friend) to report on your and your baby’s progress, and be kind to yourself and your partner. Your new family is precious and fragile. Treat it with love and tenderness.
Mantra Number Five: Ask For Help
A night of uninterrupted sleep is an amazing gift for new parents. If you have someone in your life willing to care for the baby though the night so that you can sleep – anytime during those first few months of your newborn’s life consider asking for the help. One night, my mother-in-law watched our son through the night on the couch in our family room while my husband and I slept through the night for the first time in four weeks. What a blessing. My son is 30 years old and I still remember the favor so that tells you how monumental a gift it was. If you and your partner are in agreement with this kind of help, ask for it. You would be surprised how many grandparents, siblings, or aunts and uncles would be willing to help for one night if asked.
Best wishes with new motherhood. Remember, you are not alone in your joy or anguish (at times). Be good to yourself because motherhood is, by far, the hardest job in the world and congratulations!