I wouldn’t trade anything in the world for motherhood. I mean nothing at all. It is by far the most incredible yet challenging thing I have ever experienced. I remember vividly when it dawned on me that my life as I knew it was about to change in all kinds of major ways. I had just been discharged from the hospital, two days after birthing my son and the hubby showed up with balloons and flowers to take us home. As we drove out of the hospital parking lot, I dropped down the mirrored sun visor to check myself out only to see a reflection of my baby in his car seat. That was the exact moment reality really set in. That reality would continue to unfold over the next couple of days. Meeting the baby’s demands, taking care of hubby’s needs and keeping the house super-clean (mild OCD patient over here) – in that particular order – became my daily routine. I was pretty much out of the equation except for taking care of my basic hygiene essentials.
Three months post-partum and two weeks before I was scheduled to return to work I took a look in the mirror and realized that I had lost myself in the process of being a super mom. I had become the kind of mom I once swore never to be. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t looking too much of a mess but I wasn’t seeing a reflection of myself that I was in love with. No thanks to sleep deprivation.
Having a baby really changes you and a lot of women lose themselves and their identity. In the worst case scenarios, some women even develop prolonged postpartum depression. The battle to be a great mother is real and so is the battle of not losing your identity. I had to do some soul-searching and realized that I would be an even better mom if I could rejuvenate myself and bring back as much of the old me as possible. Here’s how I got my groove back!
- I Went Shopping
As far as I am concerned, shopping is a powerful form of therapy. It’s amazing what a few new clothes can do to your spirits. To make my first postpartum shopping experience more fun, I let my guard down and experimented with new styles and colors. Getting stylish again really helped get my groove back. So if you are a new mom and looking to lift your spirits, go shopping! It doesn’t matter how much you spend, just spoil yourself a little!
- I Pursue Old Goals
When I became pregnant, I had to put a few personal goals aside to focus on preparing for my growing family. Inspired by the desire to build a beautiful legacy my child will be proud of, I recently resumed working on one of my biggest goals. Pursuing an old goal is a great way to be your old self plus the feeling is purely gratifying.
3. I Started a New Workout Routine
I always dreamed that I would be one of those women who wake up with a flat tummy the day after giving birth. The exact opposite happened to me and it was quite a shocker. For many months post-delivery, I still looked very pregnant. After much research, I diagnosed myself with diastasis recti, a condition caused by separation of the left and right sides of the abdominal muscle, resulting in a noticeable gap around the belly button and a persistent pregnant appearance. This murdered my self-esteem. Nothing the hubby or anyone said to make me feel better worked. It didn’t help that I couldn’t start intense work out as soon as I wanted to as most abdominal exercises exacerbate diastasis recti. As soon as I got the clearance from my Ob-gyn, I started a new workout routine that is already boosting my emotional state and physique.
- I Indulge in My Favorite Hobbies
Like most new mothers, finding time to do things I love has been tough. I had to find a way to squeeze out time to indulge in my hobbies. I call it “me time!” Finding time to write, dance and catch up on my favorite TV shows like homeland really help me feel like the old me.
5.I Blocked Out Hubby Time
The presence of a baby limits the amount of time you spend with your partner. In the first few months after the baby arrived, hubby and I barely spent time together, alone. I knew that we needed to reconnect but finding that time was the problem. We had to commit to dedicating time to enjoy ourselves after all a happy couple equals happy parents to a happy baby.
I hope that this helps another new mom struggling to get her groove back! Remember, it doesn’t happen overnight, you have to commit to it.