Care & Encouragement
Being a mother is hard work. And discouragement can certainly creep in. Sometimes you just need some encouragement and self-care. Here you’ll find tips for finding ways to sneak time for you, ways to care for your postpartum self, and encouragement for when things seem impossibly difficult.
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As new moms, we face constant self-judgment and self-doubt. It’s ridiculously hard to be a mom, and sometimes it doesn’t feel like it’s ok for things to be hard. But it can be an intimidating time. There are a lot of things that we don’t know. And a lot of things that come with being a new mom that can leave us feeling questionable. Is it ok to feel the way we feel? Is it ok to make time for me? Am I the only one who feels this way? Here are 7 things that new moms need to hear. Things that, as a new mom myself, I wish I had been told and reassured of earlier.
Having a baby is amazing. Motherhood is obviously exhausting and can be a difficult point of transition in life and in your relationships. But it can also inspire you to grow in relationship with your husband (even if you’re constantly annoyed with him), recognize that you really do need some self-care, teach you to bargain shop better, and inspire you to make healthy and simple changes to your routine.
Breastfeeding is hard. There, I said it. For some reason there is an obnoxious myth about how “beautiful” and “natural” it is – leaving mother’s like me (and maybe you) feeling like there must be something wrong with us. Despite having attended a breastfeeding class prior to giving birth, and choosing a pediatrician with a lactation consultant, and giving birth in a “baby friendly” hospital that also provided a lactation consultant – I struggled. And in talking with many of my friends, the breastfeeding struggles we faced weren’t uncommon.
Mastitis is, in my personal opinion, the single most terrifying aspect of breastfeeding. Once my little guy got teeth and would occasionally try to clamp down and tug to release rather than just let go (ooouuuucchhh), losing my nipple was still just a secondary fear. My first was, “no! If he breaks the skin I could end up with mastitis!” My second flash of a thought was, “please don’t let him have bitten it off!” I’ve gotten mastitis twice, so I get the fear. So, what can you look for with a mastitis infection and what should you do if you think you might have it? Well, I’ve learned a couple of things over my nearly 9 months of breast feeding.
Mother’s Day is right around the corner and, whether you have a significant other to sing your praises or not, you deserve to be celebrated. Day in and day out you kick butt and take names (and pack lunch, make dinner, fold laundry, change diapers, provide midnight feedings, and more). So whether you have the worlds most supportive significant other, or you are stumbling through your days in an invisibility cloak (because you’re a total badass even if you are invisible), here are a few ways that you can celebrate yourself this Mother’s Day.
I did it! I finally got my hair cut and it feels so good to have something short and fresh in time for spring. To not have to throw my hair up into a messy bun, where it would inevitably stay, as soon as my son lunges for the available strands. Almost since he was born I’ve been terrified to get my hair cut. I was embarrassed about the long strands that were falling out at the slightest touch, which was especially bad when I washed or brushed my hair. Postpartum hair loss is no joke.
Little Man has a cold. Before picking him up from daycare, our wonderful provider let us know he was having a lot of trouble napping, so she held him and rocked him to sleep. She sent a beautiful picture of him nestled in, snug against her chest, with drooping eyelids. Perfectly at peace. So, preparing to put him to bed for the evening I fully anticipated some additional snuggle-requirements from our tiny dictator. Nope. I had mutiny on my hands. I don’t know about you, but when stuff like this happens I find myself comparing myself to his provider. It’s these moments when I feel like a bad mom.
Everyone always babbles on and on about how important self-care is and how critical it is to our well-being. People like to make the point that moms need to “make time for ourselves,” but I always wonder – how??? As a working mom you can’t seriously expect me to turn over any time with my son for myself. My time with him is already frustratingly minimal. And my husband is a realtor, so his weekends and evenings aren’t exactly without their scheduling conflicts, so I don’t look forward to giving up time with him either. The house is constantly a mess, we always need food, I need to continue to go to work – there isn’t really room for something to “give” in favor of self-care with limited time available.
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Hi! I'm Sarah
Welcome to Snugglebug Life
I’m a mom, like you, navigating parenthood for the first time. Snugglebug Life is where I share the tips and tricks I wish I knew along the way along way!