Prior to having my babies, I was a craft enthusiast.  You name the craft supply, I had it.  I dedicated hours of spare time each week creating all sorts of beautiful pieces.  Many I kept to admire and many I gave away for others to enjoy.  I didn’t realise back then just how valuable this hobby of mine was to my wellbeing. It brought me be joy, fulfilment and confidence.  After babies, I literally let it all go…..

Entering motherhood can be a time when some of those special things you did for yourself  ‘once upon a time’ seem too difficult to achieve. 

I’ve not yet met one new mother who has not experienced the ‘shock to the system’, of  repeated waking through the night, especially when breastfeeding.  Sleep deprivation is only one example of the many impacting changes during  this season of life. 

Low energy levels from all of these demands on the mind and body can often be felt over several months as baby grows to be a more independent feeder and ‘traveller’.   As a result self – neglect, that thief of  health and wellbeing often manifests during these wonderful but demanding years.   

Diet, exercise, restorative sleep,  social contact, creative expression and time outdoors can suffer dramatically.   I’ll spare you the fine details, but I too fell into what could be labelled as the ‘new mother  trend of self -neglect’.

Thankfully I’ve been in a better place for several years  now. One of my ‘cures’ was resurrecting my craft hobby.  I’m back into creating beauty and it simply feels good ! By the way, do you like my pearl creation resting upon the portulaca I grew ? 

Now here are some pearls for you dear  mum.  These helped me tremendously. Please treasure them for you.  Keep a schedule if you can, to help you achieve  the self-care routine you wish to implement. 

Go out and play mum !

Play is as good for mum as it is for baby. Get into sport. Plan a field trip. Enjoy a theatre production.  If on some days you can’t get out, try a nightly gym ball workout with your partner and have a good laugh in the process.  Dance.  We love to dance funny waltzes to the music of our late teens – yes we are a sight for sore eyes !

Speak to someone other than your partner and children every day

I bet this is something you used to do everyday especially if you were employed.  Try and keep it up, even if over the phone.

Create a ‘you’ space !

Nothing other than your things allowed here….your books, your music, your mementos.  This should be a place no little fingers are allowed.

Keep your creativity alive if you are that way inclined

Hang out at Bunning’s, let yourself dream and plan a complete garden/room  makeover (that’s my favourite).  Make yourself some nice jewellery. Journal your thoughts.

Keep hydrated

Dehydration can occur gradually especially if you are breastfeeding.  You may not even be aware.  Keep a water bottle nearby and keep it up.

Have ‘down’ time every day

Spend an afternoon at the library or in a special spot in your garden  reading a favourite book.  Lay down and rest or take a power nap.

If you are feeling overwhelmed please reach out to someone !

Don’t do the hard yards alone. There are many wonderful support services for mums only a phone call away.  Your local child /maternal health nurse is an excellent port of call also.

I encourage you to look after yourself  every day. Be easy on yourself while you are at it.  Remember your little ones are watching and learning from you too.  Being a model of SELF-CARE is a wonderful, empowering gift to your children, which will serve them well later in their lives.

You might also like to read:

4 Essential Ingredients for a Smooth Transition to Motherhood

Motherhood Muddle

Speak Up

Stay-At-Home-Mum: A Day in the Life.

Never underestimate the power of a woman