How to overcome new mom challenges?
Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash
While being a mum for the first time can be a fulfilling and joyful experience, it can also be stressful, confusing, and exhausting. After all, you adore your child and want only what’s best for them, but it’s not uncommon for new mums to feel as if they have no idea what they’re supposed to be doing. If this is how you sometimes feel and if you think that you’re having a tough time mastering motherhood, here are some excellent tips to help you get through this initial period.
Manage your sleep
One of the most frequent problems new mums face is having to adjust their entire schedule to their baby’s rhythm. This means that, in theory, you only get to sleep when your baby does. In practice, your chores still await, you have to prepare meals for your baby and clean up after them regularly. As this leaves you with very little time to sleep, you might become too tired to function properly, get mood swings or even feel depressed, which can affect your overall health and, consequently, the way you tend to your baby.
It’s essential that you get as much sleep as possible. Perhaps you can ask your parents, siblings, or close friends to help you around the house or run some errands now and then so that you can take a nap with your cherub. In case you can afford it, see if you can pay somebody to come over a few times a week and take over some of your daily tasks. Remember, it’s perfectly fine to admit you need some sleep and to find a way to get it.
Talk to other mothers
After giving birth, many mothers are still hormonal and can feel low for no apparent reason. Furthermore, you might feel isolated and alone, as if nobody truly understands you. In situations like these, remember you’re not alone and that millions of other women are going through the same things as you. Reach out to them and see what you can learn from their experiences.
Since it’s not easy to socialize with a new baby around, a good idea would be to use technology. For instance, you can download the phenomenal Mumli motherhood app, which can connect you to other mothers and which allows you to share your problems, ideas, and hacks with them. This can be more than just useful since it can help you advance your parenting techniques and receive your daily dose of enthusiasm, which is something you might lack occasionally. In addition, this is a great solution for those late-night problems, when you don’t find it appropriate to wake up your mum or your sister with an urgent question. No matter what time it is, there is a mother out there awake, like you, ready to bless you with her wisdom and give you some instant peace of mind.
Feel free to say no
When you have a baby, it’s normal for your friends and family to want to visit you and see your newborn as soon as possible. This is something you may not feel ready for yet and something that can burden you additionally when you have so much to handle already, especially if you have to work from home while caring for a baby. If you don’t think you’re up for entertaining people, no matter how close they are to you and how much you love and appreciate them, it’s your right to say no to them. Just tell them that you can’t have guests at the moment and that they can come over in a while when you’re more in tune with your new role.
It’s also your right to say no only to certain people while allowing others to come by as they wish. The key is for you to feel comfortable so that your baby can feel that way, too. Those who really care about you will understand and respect your decision, and those who don’t understand shouldn’t bother you at all. Your child is all that matters now and you have to put them and yourself first.
Find yourself again
Giving birth is demanding and can take its toll on both your mind and body. If you’ve gained weight and your body can’t move as swiftly or as flexibly as it used to or doesn’t look as well, your self-esteem might drop a bit. Add to this the fact that you don’t have time for the beauty routine you were once accustomed to, or that you can barely get any ‘ME’ time, and you can end up feeling lost like you’re not really yourself anymore. Bear in mind that, while being a mother is your most important job now, you’re still your own person and are entitled to feel good about yourself.
First of all, don’t let that bit of extra weight get you down. It might take a while, but you’ll manage to get yourself back in shape. If your baby is too little and you don’t want to leave them with anybody while you go out and work out, you can do some exercises next to their crib. They’ll be calmer with you next to them. If you can’t do that either, that’s fine as well. Wait a few months and try again. If you think that putting on makeup or doing your hair will make you feel more like your old fabulous self, then put on some foundation, lipstick, or mascara when you can, or dye your hair at home. You pampering yourself a bit won’t hurt anybody. On the contrary, if something makes you more cheerful and happier, then your little one will benefit from it, too.
When motherhood gets too hard, bear in mind nobody’s doing a perfect job. There are no strict rules and doing your best is all that you actually can do. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or advice. Involve your partner, talk to your family and friends, get support from other women and stay positive. You’ve got this, even if you don’t know it yet.