We love celebrating mothers at Pumps for Mom, and we think you should love celebrating yourself, too! Whether it’s Valentine’s Day or just a regular Monday afternoon, take a moment to love yourself and remember that your little one won’t be mad at you for sneaking in a nap or eating a snack every once in a while. We’ve come up with a list as a reminder that your self-worth matters—we believe in you, and you should too!
Ask for Help
We know that no two moms are alike, and no family situation is the same, so it may be easier for some to pull from a support system than others. That being said, even if you don’t have a partner or a tight inner circle to help with your baby, there are mom groups, babysitters, and friends out there who are willing to step in when you need even just a few minutes to yourself. Don’t be afraid to reach out to acquaintances if you’re feeling desperate for a break. If you do have a partner or someone else helping out full-time, coordinate with them so that you’re getting “me time,” even if it’s just a short nap or a hot bath. Remember that there’s no room for guilt when caring for yourself and that your baby will be in good hands.
Eat Well, Sleep Well, and Get Some Fresh Air
Taking charge of your physical health is another task that’s easier said than done, yet crucial to your wellbeing. We don’t think you need to push yourself too far at the gym trying to get that “pre-baby body” back. We do believe you should eat nourishing foods, get outside when the weather is nice, and try to get as much rest as you can. In short, please don’t overdo it and listen to your body. It may seem impossible, but you can squeeze in some outside time while you’re pumping, perhaps, or try out one nutritious yet delicious meal per week. Sleep might depend on other factors (hello, crying baby), but take it if you have a chance to rest. Most importantly, consult with your doctor when in doubt.
Journal and Reflect
One of the best things you can do for yourself as a new mother is to remember that you are still your own person. You might be running around 24/7 taking care of other people, but your thoughts deserve a space to flourish. Journaling is a way to sit and reflect on your emotions and what has been going on in your life. Whether you just got pregnant or are several months into nursing a newborn, it’s been a wild ride. Take a few minutes when your baby is asleep or in someone else’s care to gauge how you’re feeling. Let yourself off easy; don’t worry if you’re frustrated, tired, or upset. Give yourself the room to acknowledge your feelings to address areas in which you can feel better or hold on to the sweet moments of happiness. Your baby gets to cry when they’re overwhelmed; writing down your emotions will give you an outlet of your own.
You just gave birth to a whole human being. You are strong and can do things you never thought you could. Remember that. Tell yourself that. Don’t use any negative self-talk, but build yourself up. “Yes, I can figure out how to use this breast pump, and yes, my baby will be well-fed because I am a caring mother.” Be your own advocate; ask the doctor when you have a question, feel confident in the decisions you make for your family, and remember that, as a mother, you instinctively know how to care for your baby. Everything is going to be okay.
Give Yourself Grace
Finally, give yourself some grace. True, we think everything will be fine and that you’ve got this. But there might be a learning curve. There will be long nights, new developments, hormonal surges, and changing patterns. It’s okay if you don’t feel strong and empowered yet. Just treat your mind and body well and give yourself a break. Your baby is brand new and so is your journey into motherhood. It might take some time to get used to things. You might be struggling with postpartum depression or navigating relationship changes after baby. All of that is normal, and we know you’re doing the best you can. Give yourself a break even if you don’t take our advice to get some rest and reflect. There’s always tomorrow to try again. Remember that you are a beautiful mother who is doing her absolute best.
Pumps for Mom can help you with all things breast pumps to make at least one step in the motherhood process easier. If you want to learn more about how to qualify for a free breast pump through insurance or what type of pump is right for you, reach out today to get started.