From childhood to young adulthood to entering the professional world, the challenges that women face are complex, but they’re ours and they make us who we are. And just when you think you’ve seen it all, there’s motherhood. Motherhood heralds a brand new set of unique challenges and experiences that will basically have you learning how to live life all over again, whilst simultaneously having to teach your baby too! Here are just a few lifestyle changes you’ll experience in your first few months of motherhood.
Health and fitness
It goes without saying that it’s important for new mothers to take care of themselves after giving birth. The main areas of self-care that need to be prioritized here are rest, nutrition, and physical health. First and foremost, your body needs to be given a chance to recover from the act of giving birth. The first four weeks of motherhood are usually housebound, but from thereon, your doctor will most likely give you the all-clear to take your baby out for a stroll. Twin prams and a friend will be useful here because both you and your baby will enjoy some gentle company in your introduction to the outside world. Having a close friend to share the experience of new motherhood will also make the transition from gentle physical activity to more intense activities like yoga and jogging, a lot easier to navigate.
You’ll find that any friends who are sharing your early motherhood experiences alongside you will more than likely be the friends you’ll be interacting more frequently with during this period in your life. This is quite simply because all the new experiences that are being thrown at you will most definitely require some unpacking. Whilst input from experienced mothers can offer some comfort, actually sharing your experiences with other women who are living through this period alongside you will ensure that you never feel alone during this dramatically different time of your life. This is why mothers groups are such a valuable resource for young mothers.
Of course, that being said, you can still make time for your old friends, and they’ll definitely want to come visit you and your newborn. Just make sure that you prioritize your own needs first and ask for space when you may feel you need it. Returning to your old social calendar will take longer than you may think, and that’s perfectly natural.
Speaking of returning to your old social calendar, the most alarming lifestyle change that new mothers may experience is the evolution of your relationship with your partner. With all the demands that come with raising a newborn, you’ll find that making time for date nights will become less of a priority. Candlelit dinners will be replaced with preparing bottles and changing nappies. Not only this, but options for date nights will also be quite limited unless you can organize a regular babysitter.
But it’s important to keep in mind that even though what you’d quality time with your partner will change, it doesn’t mean that there is no quality time. It’s all about changing your perspective and making a commitment to communicate your needs to one another consistently throughout this new phase of your lives. And of course, it doesn’t help to think outside the box when it comes to putting together some effortless date night ideas for you and your significant other to enjoy.
Finally, it’s also important to note that time for yourself is just as important as time spent with your partner. It goes without saying that motherhood often pressures us, women, into putting the needs of others ahead of our own, and you need to be consistently respectful towards the fact that your own body’s recovery is more important during this time than anything else, even if it may not seem to be so. Be with your baby and love every second of this new journey you’re on together, but also be sure to stop and smell the roses for yourself along the way. Making time for the little things will fuel you more than you know.