I am six weeks postpartum with my sixth baby and during this season of life, it’s so clear that being a mom is hard and lovely all at once. After the baby comes, the baby is pretty much everyone’s focus including the mom and most times this can cause the one who needs the most care to feel alone and uncared for.
Remembering that you cannot fill from an empty cup is crucial. I can’t say it enough, it’s IMPORTANT to remember to take care of yourself so you can take care of others. If not, you’ll end up feeling burned out, sad and that could lead to postpartum depression. I know no mom wants to find herself in that so I want to share a little bit about how you can self care during this time and guess what, it’s not by going to get a massage. It’s fulfilling your basic needs so you don’t feel so spent when you’re giving so much to others.
Some people believe that self care is only done in big extravagant things but that’s the farthest thing from the truth.
These are a few ways that I am giving myself self care during my postpartum season. I hope that you can incorporate them into your life and see how happy something so small can make you during this season of life.
- get up before the children and have at least 30 minutes to yourself. Lately, this is the time that I get up and take a quick steaming hot then ice cold shower to help wake myself up after a long night. I am living life in three hour intervals right now so that hot shower does wonders for me first thing in the morning. I am not a morning person and I feel like this helps me wake up and not be so grumpy. Anytime I don’t do this and I let the children be my alarm clock I feel frazzled and aggravated all day. I also take this time in the shower to talk to myself (yes, I said talk to myself… hear me out) about all the things I’m grateful for. This really helps me not sweat the small stuff that can happen throughout the day.
- wear comfortable clothing that makes you feel put together without actually being put together. I shared this on a previous post I wrote (the things you need during your first week after delivering a baby) and I swear by this rule in life. I don’t throw on worn out sweatpants and a holey t-shirt because I would feel like a slob and that would make me feel like I can’t get myself together. Instead I focused on finding a few staple pieces of nicer comfortable and stylish clothing that I can double my wear in the house and out. You can read more about my every day style and grab links by clicking here.
- be ok with accepting help. After my births with Nolan and Harper I was pretty much a Lone Ranger and did not have any help. Not gonna lie, it was REALLY hard! I struggled a lot and then when I did get asked if I needed help I wouldn’t want to accept it. I felt like I was not doing what I needed to do as their mom by allowing someone else to step in to give me a break. ACCEPT THE HELP! If someone offers you to come by and bring food, let them! Our friends put together a meal train after I had Mercy, Vivi and Presley…. wow, it was such a huge help not having to deal with preparing food. If someone wants to come over and load my dishwasher or unload it, by all means… please do! Want to fold a load of laundry? YES! Whatever you want to do to help while baby and mom rest, I am all for it.
- sleep when you can. After I had Mercy, I seriously went full steam ahead and it just felt right. After I gave birth to Vivi, I had to slow it way down. With Presley I didn’t do anything for two weeks. I wouldn’t say that I sleep every time she does but I do sleep and rest a lot more than I have in the past. Our bodies tell us what we need when we need it and this time, it’s told me to rest more frequently. It’s been really hard for me to do it but when I don’t my mental health suffers. Lack of sleep can cause you to feel like a different person and with all of my littles I need to be on my A game. Just take the nap and deal with your to do list later.
- don’t over commit. One thing that I’ve realized after six kids is that there is a grace period that I need to give myself after each baby before I get back into a normal routine. It’s normally 3-4 months after the baby is born before I feel like I can go full speed like normal. Until I hit that mark where I’m back in my grove I don’t commit to things that I normally would. I really do stay home a lot more and I only go to social events that aren’t stressful. You know the ones I am talking about… the events that you really don’t want to go to but feel like you have too. Yea, I just don’t do to those. Staying home until I feel like it’s a good idea to go out works just fine and doesn’t make me stressed out. It’s a win win.
Could you take a little time and really think about how you can give yourself a break and self care?
I hope that you look at what I shared above and implement some of these into your life postpartum. It’s just less stress on you during a stressful time – the fourth trimester. It’s ok to focus on yourself and your little bubble because it will help you through getting acclimated.