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The Importance of Self Care for the New Mom

April 13, 2018

This is a post that I have continually put on the back burner because of the raw, very real feelings the subject ignites in me.  As some of you know, coming into motherhood was difficult for me.  I struggled with some dark days, experiencing baby blues and post-partum anxiety for the first few months as a new Mum.

Rewind to March of 2016.  I was due with our little Bubba in May, and we decide to uproot (again,) this time to Kansas City.  We had BOTH decided to change career paths, Austin taking on a new Dr. role, and me putting a pause on my career to stay home with our soon to be babe.  At this same time we decided to not only purchase our first home, but why not BUILD while we are at it!  This would soon require us to live out of a suit case in both of our parents homes for a month each with our brand new baby, as we know now building rarely follows the given timeline…

To say we took on a fair amount of change and stress all at once, would be a large understatement.  We were both completely in over our heads.  By the end of the summer we are finally settling into our new home with our 4 month old, still getting 2-3 hours of sleep a night, and now the isolation is beginning to set in.  We have now moved somewhere with out any friends, and little family, at a time when those things are SO important.  I am also still adjusting to staying at home.  I have worked since I was 14 years old, so staying home (even though I’ll be honest, taking care of a new baby is by far the hardest job I’ve had,) was extremely isolating.  This went on for months and months, until, several stress migraines later I realized I needed to find something for myself.  This is when I decided to enroll in my Yoga Teacher Training.  This was the best decision I have ever made.  I was now able to take time each week to not only teach something that I am so passionate about, but I was able to TALK TO ADULT HUMANS!  This was when life started to feel a little more normal, I felt like pieces of my old self were beginning to reappear.

Now that I was finally feeling more like my old self, and Austin and I were feeling more and more comfortable with being new parents, (and sleep training had happened,) it was time for friends! We have slowly started putting ourselves out there, and I’ll be honest making friends as adults (especially parents,) is so much harder than when we were younger.  When I had been in the work force, I felt like making fiends was kind of par for course, but staying home in a city where you know no one, the task of finding friends becomes a job in itself!  Enter the wonderful app, called Peanut.  I found this via Instagram, and was immediately intrigued.  This app was basically Tinder, but for moms.  As soon as I downloaded the app, I entered my information (Mom of 1 year old boy, living in KC, Hobbies and interests.) Simple enough!  Right away, hundreds of other moms posted to my home page and I was immediately able to begin scrolling.  I was able to view pictures, but also their interests, and ages of their children to see who would be a good match.  It didn’t take long and I “matched up” with several moms in the area with similar aged children.  Fast forward two weeks and I had begun regular play dates, moms night outs, birthday parties, and Sunday brunches!  This app was truly a life saver.

The purpose of this post isn’t to scare any soon to be, or new moms.  It is simply to be honest, and to try and motivate any of you to put yourselves out there SOONER (and to maybe avoid moving/ building a home/ starting a new job at the same time you’re becoming parents..)  All of these positive changes that I made, frankly, took much too long, and I wish I had some guidance during those scary, chock-full of change months.  For me self care in that first year meant exercising, being around people (who could talk,) date nights alone with my husband, and finally finding some true girlfriends to talk to about parenthood and also about anything BUT parenthood!  Becoming a new mom is the greatest gift you can receive, and feeling like your best self while doing it, well thats the best gift YOU can give.

 

 

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