It’s been more than 4 months, and I am definitely still working on this one…how to take care of myself as a new mommy.
Becoming a mom is a big, huge, gigantic shift. In one glorious instant, your beautiful baby comes into the world, and everything changes–from your body, to your free time, to your sleep schedule, to your outlook on life.
Everything in the world is a little more wonderful. But, at the same time, everything seems to be a little more difficult.
The hours in the day seem to fly by and drag all at the same time. You think the items on your to-do list will all get checked off– because you’re organized and babies nap…right?– and suddenly you find yourself at bedtime having gotten none of them done.
Most days, it’s totally worth it. That is, until the days that you are just so frazzled that you feel like you might snap. It’s times like these that must serve as reminders of how truly important it is for us mommies to take care of ourselves.
I’ll just admit it…I’m a personal trainer, and, in the months since having my daughter (who is ridiculously cute and amazing, by the way), I am lucky if I work out more than once a week. I was typically working out six days a week, so this is quite the shift from the life I used to know.
Motherhood is definitely the most amazing job I’ve ever had, but it can have its dark moments. Around the time that I went back to work (part-time…I am one of the lucky ones), I was finding myself getting increasingly frustrated and feeling like all I do is “do” for other people. (Even just typing that sends a spark of mommy-guilt…which is certainly worthy of a post all its own.)
I brushed it off for a while. We are immensely lucky to have a good sleeper, so I would usually wake up in the morning feeling renewed, only to have the frustration pile back on during the day.
Finally, one day, it boiled over when I was having a hard time consoling my cranky little one. As she finally fell asleep and we both got some relief from the tears that were flowing, I knew that I needed to do something for myself.
Doing something for myself makes me a better mom, and there is absolutely nothing to feel guilty for in that.
So, I went to a yoga class. In the class, the teacher was discussing spring as a rebirth, and it was like she spoke directly to my heart and my new life. I knew in those first five minutes that here at this class was just where I needed to be.
So, now, it’s all about baby steps. I do my best to find some small way each week to do something that really fulfills me.
The guilt still comes, that’s for sure. But I also do my best to remind myself again: Doing something for myself makes me a better mom, and there is absolutely nothing to feel guilty for in that.
So, today, I challenge you to find a time in the coming week when you can do something that makes you feel fulfilled. It doesn’t have to be huge; it can be just as simple as taking a walk outside. Really savor this moment for the better you that this time helps you become.
Better yet, share it in the comments below to we can all get a little extra inspiration!