Welcoming a new baby into our family is one of the most joyous experiences life has to offer but it can also be one of the most stressful. Many new moms struggle with the baby after giving birth. Same goes to me. When I know that I’m going to be mum, all I feel is excited and I know I can go through this and never ever thoughts of anything else. Then, after giving birth and the baby is here, demands are coming from all angles, demand from being a new mum, working mum and to make it worse, its during the pandemic, our family members or friends can’t really come join the village to take care of you and your baby. Most of the time, just you and your husband with the baby so it’s easy to feel the strain under increased pressure and anxiety.
I’ve been there and I know how its feel so that why I write this articles based on my experience and here are things any new mom can do to preserve their mental health and happiness.
- Know the signs of a mental health issue
The more you know about the most common mental health conditions for new mom, the quicker you can get support. Some typical postpartum depression symptoms include feeling extremely sad, sleeping too little or not being able to sleep. You may also feel irritable, have difficulty concentrating or lose interest in your regular hobbies.
If you think you may be experiencing postpartum depression, go visit clinic or hospital as soon as possible.Don’t keep it yourself because it will get worse or you maybe lose control someday. Before that happen, please go visit clinic and hospital asap.
I shared about how can you find help if you think you having mental health issue HERE. You can refer this as guide.
- Invest in your self care
Self care is essential to our mental health especially when you’re new mum.
You don’t have to spend hours at the spa or several days at the gym to enjoy more holistic wellness. Try spending just a few moments each week doing something you enjoy. I know its hard to do self care during newborn stage because the baby need you always, but you can ask help from your husband or family to take care of baby for awhile and you can do what you love. I’m thankful when come to this because my husband always give me time to do self care when our baby just newborn. This really help me to go through my mental health. Now its PKP/MCO, you still can do self care such as such as watching your favorite drama, writing in blog ( like me) or doing a yoga. You can also do new facial masks while baby naps, treat yourself to a hot cup of tea or paint your nails when you have a break. Take it easy ya.
- Reduce your use of Social media
You may find yourself scrolling through social media while you nurse or put baby to sleep. However, maybe sometimes this will lead to comparing yourself to other moms. Its happen to me too. I saw the photos of new mum with her baby and they look so happy and I start question myself, why am I not like that? Am I such a loser? All the negative thoughts comes in due to that. If you find you comparing yourself, please stop scrolling through social media, the less time you spend liking, commenting and posting, the more time you’ll have to rest. You’ll also be able to devote more energy to self care. If you need more socialisation, consider getting together with a friend with a newborn.
- Engage in positive self talk
Being a new mom is both exhilarating and challenging. On some days, you’ll feel like you’ve accomplished so much, while on others, you’ll feel like you have no idea what you’re doing with your life. Remember, every new parent has the same emotions. After all, being a mom is an on-the-job training experience. While you give yourself permission to be a novice in the field of parenting, you can conquer your negative feeling by being your own best advocate.
One of the best way to feel better about yourself and your new life is to engage in positive talk. Positive talk is all about showing yourself compassion and understanding through communication and language. You can start say ” I am a great mom”, ” I am blessed, my baby and I are doing wonderful” every time there negative thoughts coming.
The more you say inspirational and happy things, the more you will believe them. You can also try writing positive messages on sticky notes and taping them to you mirror or desk. Happiness books and podcasts can also encourage you to stay on the right track.
- Find a person you can be real with
Identify someone you can talk openly with and commit to sharing your feeling with that person. I am glad I had my friend, Maznee that really be there with me during my new mom early days. She always asking how am I and I can talk anything with her. No matter how frustrated you are or how silly you think your feelings may be, having someone to confide in and validate your experiences is important. Keep communicating. Don’t be alone ya.
- Stop comparing your baby to other babies
I sempat juga feel down when the first time we met other babies, her baby is almost same month with my baby but my baby is look small. I start to questions myself that time, maybe because I’m not breastfeeding my son that why? maybe because that and that?? Thanks God, I learn this quickly, no need to comparing my baby to other babies, just compare him to himself. Is he develop well as time goes on?
- Remember, this season is temporary
Different times of life require that certain aspects of ourselves come to the front and others have to step back a bit. So, right now, mothering has moved to the top of the list, which mean other things are going to get bumped. The important here is to remember that this is just one season in your life. Things will change. You will have more time for yourself soon. Your baby will get on schedule and you’ll be able to plan around naps and bedtime. You and your partner will have date nights again.
While you’re in this new phase, try to appreciate it. There will come times you’ll long for days spent at home with your baby and miss the unscheduled time. For now, enjoy being mom first.
When you’re in the thick of new mom life, it can feel very hectic, unmanageable and overwhelming. It’s hard to see the path you’re on, let alone trust that you’re actually moving forward. But you are.
Each day you’re getting closer to feeling confident in your mom skills. Each day you and your baby are growing together. It’s not linear growth. Sometimes it’s two steps forward and one step back, but hey, that’s still progress!
Learning to let go a bit and trust yourself is key. Trust that you are enough for your baby. Trust that you will feel like yourself again. Trust that you will make it through. Trust that you are a great mum. Trust the process.
I hope you learn something from this article and make you feel better.
If you need someone to talk about this, you can reach me out by click Whatsapp below.
Aya, Karl Sibal’s Mom