We’ve all seen the post.
What I wish I knew before I Became a mom.
The list typically tells things like sleep while your baby sleeps so you have energy for him, stock up your fridge and pump before its time.
All of these things are wonderful and trust me they are needed. Especially the last one, I mean come on, your boobs will definitely thank you.
But when I became a mom, a single mom at that, you know what I needed more than the typical how to care for baby advice? How to care for me advice.
I needed someone to tell me that yes keeping a baby alive is hard but keeping that “pre-mom” woman alive, is much harder.
So that’s what this blog post is.
This blog post is going to prepare you for taking care of the mom inside the mom.
I’ve said it plenty times before on this blog, like when I discussed why self care is important to moms or how I treat myself daily in motherhood, but to me self care was the turning point of my motherhood journey.
Until I discovered self care the sun rose and set on my son. Now I know when we have kids as moms we’re like “okay, and what’s wrong with that”. And there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with that. However, in between the sun rising and setting on him, the sun needed to shine on me too.
As moms we’ve become accustomed to constantly giving to our children’s needs and negating ours. It’s habitual. We’re nurturers by creation. But the truth of the matter is until we learn to care for us too, it is almost impossible for us to efficiently care for our children.
Before I became a mom I didn’t really think much into “self care”, and if we’re being honest until about the last 2-3 years the rest of the world didn’t care about it either. Now self care tends to be this fad that everyone is talking about and is overly obsessed with.
Don’t get me wrong, I like the trend. It’s important that we now are learning that taking care of ourselves is important. The reality however, is that oftentimes this self care isn’t discussed for what it really is; care of yourself.
If someone would have told me self care can be:
-laying outside looking at the stars at night.
-being in bed doing absolutely nothing but hearing myself breathe
-getting dressed just to lay on the couch
Then honestly, I may have been better off with self care as a mom. But this engrained idea of self care only being physical activities, then led me as a new mom to believe if I couldn’t get something done for myself or to myself, then I failed at self care.
My Mental Shift
No one told me what self care was.
I taught it to myself.
I learned to listen to my body and began to pay attention to how it felt after certain activities.
This fed my self care journey.
Instead of always looking for something to do, I allowed myself to feel what I needed in the time.
Sometimes it was handing the baby off just so I could breathe by myself for a few minutes and sometimes it was curling up so tight with him so that I could inhale the new baby smell and fall right to sleep.
By allowing myself to change my thinking on self care, I was able to take such better care of myself and create my own self care narrative.
My Self Care Practice
Honestly, I’m not sure if you guys will ever get tired of hearing me say it but self care is so important to me.
It’s how I am able to be carefree as a mama.
How I am able to run a blog, an event program, work as a nurse and still feel like I am succeeding in motherhood.
It’s how I am feeling love and life in motherhood.
People always ask me what I do, or what kind of products I use while doing self care and it’s always such a hard question for me.
I don’t necessarily DO anything or USE anything. I literally do whatever I want, whenever I want and find it so easy to call it self care as long as it makes me feel good.
This is the narrative I wish more moms took.
I wish more moms felt comfortable doing something for themselves whatever they want it to be (even if it is an activity) and standing on the fact that she needed it for herself.
For moms we control the narrative our household creates. My family will joke and laugh now when mentioning “self care” because they know I will quickly say when I need the break and how I need it.
Mama you can still change what self care means for you and your family, and allow your future children to change the narrative for their family.
Take care of you too mama,