In those early days with your newborn it's normal for things to feel pretty heavy and even dark.
It's exhausting - you've just spent nine months growing a human and an organ (placenta) from scratch!
You're body has expanded to accommodate this baby and stretched beyond imagination.
You birthed this baby, which it's exhausting and for some it can be traumatizing.
You are now caring for this baby 24/7 and feeding from your body which is time consuming, sometimes tricky to figure out and physically and emotionally tiring.
Sleeping 8 hours in a row isn't a thing anymore.
Of course you are tired and cranky and feeling off. Because life is hard right now and completely different.
So when those days come...when you are feeling like there's a dark storm cloud around your head, there are things that you can do to help dispel those clouds.
First of all, there are the basics that we can't ignore...these are your basic self care needs.
Good quality and nourishing foods.
I can't overstate enough how getting the right nutrients through warm, homemade, wholesome food is essential for both the health and recovery of mom and also her baby.
Getting enough rest.
This means spending a lot of time in bed with your baby and daytime sleep. If your baby is 0-4 weeks ago, most of your time should be spent resting.
Connection and social support.
This is the time of life when we need support the most. It's okay to ask for and to receive help from those close to you - or from paid support workers!
Beyond that there are many many different ways to help boost your mood when things are feeling off and hard for you.
Here are three different and fun ways to instantly boost your mood.
Change up your environment.
Get into the bath or the shower, you can bring your baby or pass them off to someone else. Or even put them into a baby swing or seat in the bathroom while you do this. The water and temperature change can help.
Can you get outside your house into some fresh air? You may just sit on a chair outside your door, wander down your street slowly if your recovery allows or if it's really cold...sit by the window in the sunshine and notice what you see. If you feel adventurous, you may consider going sit in a different house with different walls to look at. Maybe a close friend or family member who you feel comfortable with.
Find a way to laugh!
Laughter boosts oxytocin, that feel good hormone. So, who can you call that will listen to you, make you laugh and feel better? A friend? A family member?
If no one is available right now - put on a funny YouTube video, movie or a TV show that you know makes you laugh!
Put on your favourite song from your childhood!
I bet you won't be able to keep from smiling when you hear the into to Wannabe by Spice Girls "Yoooooo I'll tell yah what I want, what I really really want..."
Pick a familiar song from your preteen years and sing at the top of your lungs and dance around the living room!
And if things are feeling heavy and hard more days than not...it may be time to reach out to someone to help you figure out how to help you find more enjoyment in your motherhood journey.
Talking with your healthcare provider can be a good start or looking on some online resources like Postpartum Support International.
Did you have a lot of storm clouds around you with your previous baby was little? Are you hoping to have a more sunny experience with your next one?
I'd love to connect to see if I can help make it a more enjoyable time of your life.
Send me a message via the contact form below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
With warmth, light and love,