Motherhood is a joyous and wonderful experience, but realistically it also initiates an array of emotions that aren’t always positive. More often than not, it can be a struggle for new moms to feel good postpartum. Although this can be for a slew of different reasons, experiencing negative emotions after giving birth is more common than you think. That doesn’t mean it’s time to throw in the towel!
If you’re a new mom or still expecting, then read on for some helpful tips to guide you through navigating postpartum life:
Nourish Your Body
Food equals fuel. With a newborn baby and breastfeeding, it’s more crucial than ever to be mindful of what you put into your body. Eating good food can not only support your recovery, but also help you conquer motherhood with a lot more energy. For some new moms, a fixation on losing that baby weight can cloud your judgment on what your body needs post-pregnancy. Cutting back on carbohydrates might seem like an easy weight loss solution, but it can have a negative effect on your hormone regulation and breast milk production.
When focusing on your diet, think of what your body needs instead of what to take away. Healthy sources of proteins and fiber-rich carbs, like fatty fish or beans, are packed with vitamins and antioxidants that support your overall health. Staying hydrated is another way to help your body, especially if you’re breastfeeding. Nobody is a perfect clean eater 100% of the time. Remember, you are allowed to indulge and enjoy food as long as you prioritize nourishing your body with good healthy foods.
Take Care Of Your Mind
After experiencing childbirth, it’s normal to feel a wide range of emotions that might not all be positive. Even though you want to pour your whole self into your new baby, if your mental tank is empty, then you can be doing yourself a disservice. Motherhood can be overwhelming and have an impact on your mental state, which is why you should lean on the people in your life and services that can help.
Learning to ask for help doesn’t mean you have failed as a mother. Rather, it means you are doing what’s best for your family. If you need a break from mommy duties, then talk to your partner. Taking the time to focus on your needs, like going for a stroll or taking a bubble bath, will help you feel connected with yourself and give you a moment to replenish your energy.
However, if you find yourself drowning in negativity, don’t wait to get help. There are services like online therapy that can be a resource for those moms that need a more accessible form of therapy. All new moms will experience heightened emotions after giving birth, but if you’re worried about your mental space then seek help.
Think Comfort & Support
When you are thinking of your postpartum life, clothes are probably not on the list, but they matter more than you think. Your body is recovering, and whether it is because of breastfeeding, changing the baby, or doing your daily errands, you will still need to be active, and your clothes can help you tackle the day much more easily. If you’re not looking to repurpose your old maternity clothes, then focus on clothes with stretch. Flowy dresses are a fun way to feel dressed up without having to sacrifice comfort. Basic nursing tops might not be the sexiest but can be functional and helpful.
If you’re a mom on the go or simply looking for a bra that can make breastfeeding more manageable, then look for a front fastening bra. This bra gives you convenient access when you need to nurse or pump, regardless of the occasion. If you’re still recovering from a C-Selection or have any physical limitations, then consider side-fastening panties that help simplify self-dressing and assisted dressing. Feeling comfortable and supported in your clothes can help you feel good and ready to take on any dilemmas thrown your way.
Be Kind To Yourself
Giving birth not only changes your life, but it also changes you in more ways than one. Sometimes, it can lead you to feel disconnected from the person you once were, which can create a negative relationship with your body, as you might not be able to recognize the person in the mirror. The truth is, it’s hard to feel like the old you, but use this as an opportunity to rework your relationship with your body and yourself.
Your body looks different, and that’s ok! You went through a 9-month journey that pushed you to the limits, so it’s natural to feel and look different from pre-baby you. Talking about yourself negatively will not make you feel better or bring back your old you, but it will push you deeper down an unhappy path. Practice positive self-talk whenever you feel yourself start to complain about yourself. Replacing the negative self-talk with something more positive will rework your brain and get you out of that vicious cycle. Focus on self-love more in your day-to-day by doing small activities for yourself. Practicing mirror talk or mediating is a great way to recenter yourself and focus on the positive.
Always remember that everyone’s post-pregnancy journey is different. Give yourself time to explore and adapt to motherhood. You might not feel like the same person you were before giving birth, but instead, focus on loving the new you.