Pregnant or just had a baby? 8 tips to rock postpartum
Read on if you are pregnant, or just had a baby.

Just had a baby and not feeling all lovey-dovey? You are normal!

After my first child was born, I struggled with what to say and send to friends from my hospital room. My friends texted me things like, “She’s here?!!!! Send photos!” I stared at my new baby in the plexiglass bassinet. To say I was “in love” and “overjoyed” as other new moms would say– was not the first thing that came to mind. My heart did not feel the love I would feel later. That continues and grows to this day for each of my children. My heart and body and mind were out of sync after birth. This is okay.

Top 8 Tips for New Mommies:

  1. You rocked it! Bringing a baby into this world is a battle as old as humankind. Give yourself some grace and be kind to yourself.
  2. You can plan, but it’s just a plan. That baby is going to come into this world the way they are meant to. Focus on healthy baby, healthy mommy.
  3. It’s okay to not feel “bonded” or “love” feelings right away. Your bond with baby is not dependent on how you feel- you ARE bonding. Just spend time together.
  4. If your baby has to go to the NICU, don’t lose hope! Don’t let all the skin-to-skin and breastfeeding lingo make you feel guilty about a situation you have NO control over. Do what you can when you are in the NICU to put baby on your chest and talk to them, touch them.
  5. Stay ahead of the pain. If you have a c-section, take your pain meds on schedule! Ask about this. I didn’t like the fog of the heavy narcotic they give you right after birth but it was only for a few days! The pain after surgery should get better every day. I only had to take heavy meds for a few days with Ibuprofen and then was able to switch to Ibuprofen and Tylenol in place of a narcotic. Suture pain is searing. You don’t have to suffer from your surgery on top of everything else. Set timers on your phone so you can stagger meds.
  6. People say stupid things that aren’t true at the least and downright not helpful.  People say all kinds of dumb things when you’re pregnant, but as soon as your baby arrives they have even more to say. You’ll get better at recognizing the stupid stuff!
  7. You’re going to have to figure out a way to get naps in. You and your partner need to figure out feeds and nights– together. If you’re breastfeeding, you are going to take the hit on sleep, period. Figure out a way to include your partner so you can nurse or bottle feed, hand the baby off and then go right back to sleep.  My husband planned to take feeds and had me skip feeds so I could sleep some longer stretches. Listen to your partner’s ideas. This is his baby too. Allow for him to bond with baby and do things his way too. Give him some space to figure things out. I used a combo of breastmilk and formula for all 5 of my kids. I got lots of good (and bad) advice from lactation consultants and doulas. Ultimately the baby must eat and get calories for his or her brain development.
  8. Start a relationship with a certified counselor/therapist you trust. Whether you just had a baby or are pregnant, it’s never too soon to identify a safe person to process all the new mommy feelings with and get support!

Be honest with how you’re feeling. Lean on your partner and friends. The intense beginning of birth can feel like forever but it does get better! Your heart needs time to catch up with your mind and body.

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