Oh Baby! But What About You?
by Megan from Hawai’i
Having a baby is an incredible life experience. Your little bundle of joy is finally here and able to be snuggled 24/7! All of the precious little moments, baby noises, giggles, and smiles are on the horizon. But what about you, Mama?
We as mothers tend to put ourselves on the back burner, and as the old saying goes “you cannot pour from an empty cup.” Asking for help has never been my strong suit, and let’s be honest, after seeing Duchess Kate Middleton in heels, makeup, and a dress on the stairs hours after birth, I felt like I had to keep up with that. The reality is, we need help after birth because we are recovering! And the last thing I am planning to do is my makeup or my hair, am I right?
I am a mama of three beautiful kiddos, and each birth was different. My daughter’s birth was long and exhausting. I was grateful we were still near family who could help change diapers and feed her so I could nap. With both of my boys, we were not near family as we are an Active-Duty family. The entire birthing process for both boys went smoothly, but the after birth process felt lonely and overwhelming.
My advice is to build your support system in a variety of ways. Find local mom groups, join a Mom and Baby yoga class, reach out to friends and family, and also look in unlikely places. I have found some amazing friends just by being bold enough to strike up a conversation.
My family supported me with flowers, words of encouragement, weekly check-ins, and were always there to listen even across time zones and oceans. We even had family come stay with us for a while after each of the boys were born and it was beyond helpful to have help with the other kiddos as well.
Our military family was also great to us. They brought us dinners for a couple weeks, so we did not have to stress about cooking, a few spouses brought some bath salts and candles, and others ran errands for me or helped get my daughter to school.
These may seem like small things, but in the overall picture, I am not sure how I would have survived all of that without my amazing support system. Asking for help can seem like a hard thing to some - I totally relate - but we have to do it to allow ourselves to properly heal, bond with the baby, and adjust to this new life path we are on.
You’ve got this, Mama, and you can do hard things! Don’t forget to ask for help when you need it and snuggle that baby! They grow up so fast.
This blog was written by one of our guest bloggers, Megan.
About Megan - Megan is a mother of three and Marine spouse. She currently is pursuing her dual degree of Special Education and Elementary Education at Western Governor’s University. Megan enjoys writing, painting, baking, hiking, or sitting on the beaches of Hawai’i where her husband is currently stationed.
Want more information on this topic? wichealth.org has a free online lesson called Getting The Support You Need For Baby's First Weeks . Find this lesson at wichealth.org in the Preparing For Your Newborn category!