In the last post, undaunted by the fact that I have no children, I covered some really basic tips for new moms. If you’re up to it, here are a few more notes to help.
You’ve just had a baby! Yikes! Everything has suddenly changed. Radically. The first things you need to think about are postpartum life and easing your family into their new situation. You may be dealing with some degree of postpartum depression and/or mood swings. Don’t beat yourself up. Accept it and deal with it. Also accept the fact that happiness aside, having an infant at home is a big – and frequently stressful – change for you and the rest if the family. Sometimes just acknowledging reality is a big relief.
During the new-baby-adjustment period it’s especially important to have a few rules and routines to keep daily life flowing as smoothly as possible.
I mentioned getting the diaper bag ready before the baby comes home, but be sure to make maintaining it a part of your routine so it’s always ready. It’s your mobile changing station so check and restock it each night, and you’ll always be “good to go.”
Babies make a lot of laundry. Something always needs washing and you’re always “out” of something . . . unless you keep an eye on things. One way to do this is to keep baby laundry separate. You’ll know where things are and what state they’re in, and if you suddenly need to do a small load for the baby, you won’t need to sort through the family laundry to find what to put in it.
Your schedule has probably been “thrown for a loop” by the addition of the baby, but reestablishing a routine will make your life easier. Start by designating certain days of the week for regular tasks like grocery shopping, cleaning, errand running, etc. You can relieve yourself of a lot of pressure if you stick to your routine because you can forget these tasks the rest of the time.
As you get more settled into your new routine, begin adding new things – one at a time – into it. Choose one thing – maybe you like the kitchen surfaces cleared or the bathroom sinks sparkling clean – and add it to your schedule. When it becomes a habit for you, add another task. This is any easy way to get your entire routine back on track without stressing yourself about it.
And, of course, one of the best ways to avoid stress is to avoid clutter. You’ve probably had to add a lot of “stuff” to your life to fill those baby needs, but resist the urge to get anything more than what you need. The fewer things you have to clean and sort and manage, the more time you’ll have to spend enjoying your new life.