Everybody wants to hold the baby but who wants to hold the mother?forthemummas
The incentive behind our gifts for new mums, new mum hampers for baby shower gifts, and why we support the birth of the mother.
For a new mother…actually any mother, self-care can be a lot of things but it is not: Having a warm shower for 10 minutes, doing the grocery shop minus the baby, hanging out three loads of washing at top speed while your partner holds the baby.
These all fall under the ‘Basic Human Needs’ category, yet they become masked as ‘treat yourself moments’ for the new Mother. Even buying the best baby shower gift for Mums and babys just leaves Mums with nothing for themselves. Nappys and toys are brilliant to have, but are these the gifts for a new Mum? The lavish care package we buy for new Mums filled with nappies and balloons and toys and dummies are all about the baby! What are we actually doing to support the women who brought the kid into this world?
For most Mums, we are time-poor, sleep-deprived, down to one income and activities such as a half-day at the spa are out of the question and the budget. Gifts arrive for the newborn, guests arrive for the newborn….but it’s time to remember the strong woman who got this baby earthside.
There are loads of practical, realistic and effective things you can do which do qualify as self-care for Mums, new and returning. There is only one Mum, if she doesn’t look after herself, there is no back up. Being a Mum is a sacred, beautiful and magical season… but it is also without a doubt the most life-altering state you will ever find yourself in. If you do not build in self-care from the very start of your postpartum journey, you WILL burn out. Your little mate will pick up on your mood and energy, and I know that sounds a bit woo woo, but it’s true. Happy mum, happy baby. Energy is transferable and if you do not have enough in your tank, your family will suffer.
So Mummas! Let’s talk about self-care and making it the core of your Fourth Trimester and beyond.
Before you have your baby, send out a visitors memo:
This could look something like this
“Hey Team! We are so looking forward to introducing our new room mate/permanent resident to our most favourite people. We are also going into this just taking the day as it comes, so before you just pop on over we would be super stoked if you could text/ring to see if it will work for us as we settle into our new normal. Please don’t take it personally if it is not a good time. It’s us! Not you! We are learning as we go and want to be conscious when we catch up between feeds. We can’t wait to be parents!”
(feel free to cut n paste!)
Side note: You’re a new mum, whose also recovering from birth. If visitors are coming round, don’t cook and do coffee runs, let them help you by supplying both! Champagne is also welcome.
Village members: Surround yourself with your village, the ones who get it and can support you in this life season that can challenge you in every single way possible. Other mums that you meet antenatally…these are your people. There is nothing more comforting in the middle of the night while doing that lonely 3 am feed to check your phone and see ‘Alice is active now’.
Look out for each other and no one gets it as much as another new mum. If you need help and things are getting overwhelming, please ask for it. Whether it is from your GP, a trusted friend, your partner or a community resource, like the Australian Breastfeeding Association. Do not suffer in silence when there are solutions available to you, Mumma.
Rest: When people say ‘sleep when the baby sleeps’ you absolutely should try to. Housework is so irrelevant at this stage. Even just lying down for 20 minutes can be enough to give you a mini recharge. The housework can wait, your partner can actually pick up the vacuum, and you do deserve to do things without the baby clinging to you. Go wash your hair, have a bath, take a walk with a podcast playing. You were someone before you were a Mum, look after her and let the little things go a little.
Yes, self-care looks different for now but this too shall pass and focus on the small wins. At the end of each 24 hour period, write it off and start again. And remember, you are never alone but your village are not mind readers. All you have to do is put your hand up and you will be amazed at who comes out of the woodwork.