From Mommy to Mami – A Message To My Daughter And All New Mommy’s

There is no doubt about it. Being a Mommy is one of the biggest projects, undertakings. and labors of love a woman will ever take on, and, until you actually do it, it’s pretty hard to really “get” how big of an undertaking it is.

Then, when you are in the thick of it, you may find yourself thinking, “Holy —-!! (Plug in your favorite four letter word) This is alot of work!!” This is the beginning of the biggest balancing act in history – sorry Ringling Brothers, but you do not come close to this one!

It starts even before they are born, with questions like “Which doctor or midwife would I like to work with?” “Where do I want to have my baby, at home, in a birthing center or in a hospital setting?” “Will I have a natural birth or opt to go with some kind of meds?” The questions and areas to consider and decide upon just keep coming in a stream. They pertain to topics like breastfeeding vs bottle feeding, cloth vs plastic diapers, stay at home mom vs working mom, babysitter & childcare options, food choices, medical care, types of toys and the materials they are made of, etc.

All of this takes alot of time and energy, because there are so many topics to consider, and many, many thoughts, opinions, and even studies on most of these things. All this is in ADDITION TO caring for that new baby! BIG JOB!!!!

No wonder they say it takes a village to raise a child! It is at least five full-time jobs just to do all of the above! Hence the predicament… Because the single most important thing a mommy can do to do her best getting all of the above done is practice good self care!! Many of the other things one “needs” to do can actually be spread out further, delayed or put on hold for some time to allow for precious Mommy time.

Bottom line, if you are not meeting your needs, you can become drained, tired, hungry, or unhappy, which can lead to resentment, anger, depression, and illness. None of which add up to a loving mommy or wife. (I think this is where the saying about when mommy is not happy, nobody is happy, came from, and probably even the word bitch. I think our inner Bitch is actually our protector, who really comes out when we are in danger. Her intent is to protect us even if it means getting downright mean & nasty!! Others tend to have a bad impression of her and are even a little scared – she is one powerful woman!!)

Conversely, when you are able to find ways to incorporate things that energize you, delight you, and feed your body, heart, and soul, only then can you be a really amazing, loving, beautiful, playful mother, wife and friend.

You really are Numero Uno!!! When you take good care of you, the love, health and happiness just radiate out to all around you. Even the checker at the grocery story will benefit! Also, remember, if we all do this, we are changing the world by loving ourselves and modeling this to our kids.

Just in case you are wondering what and how, some suggestions about how to do this depend upon the details of your life, but just KNOW that there are always ways to incorporate something beneficial into your life. Keep it reasonable, you want whatever you do to help you, not add to your challenges. If you feel more stressed, look at whether you need to cutback on something or rearrange what you are currently doing.

Here are some other suggestions:

1 – Do things to make you feel good about you. You can start this by setting the tone for your day by choices regarding clothing, hair, etc. Mami’s blog on this has some really good suggestions, check it out on the Mami’s Musings page.

2 – Get enough rest. This varies from person to person and even from day to day, depending on what else you have had going on, but when you are rested, you have the ability to handle things much easier. Just notice how fussy babies and kids get when they are tired. We are pretty similar. We all do better with plenty of rest on a regular basis.

3 – Exercise – This helps on so many levels including improving our circulation, digestion, and helping weight loss, muscle tone, our energy, and our attitude. It is also a great stress reliever. You can possibly combine this with baby or child care by going for a walk with your baby/child or a bike ride. You can also get a sitter or have a friend, relative or husband watch them while you do something physical. For less time intrusion, try something at home, like using a dance, yoga or workout video of your preference, or go for a jog around your neighborhood. If your baby or child is good about napping, you could even do something while they are asleep.

4 – Eating a nourishing and strengthening diet. No matter what your preference regarding meat or no meat is, it is always good to eat lots of veggies (preferably fresh and organic to optimize nutrition and reduce toxins). Some fruit is ok too, but too much is almost like having candy and can contribute to weight gain. I personally find that very little or no dairy, gluten, and soy, as well as other grains works best for me, but be open to researching this and paying attention to your body. If you notice you are having alot of bloating, or other types of discomfort or fatigue, especially after eating, I would experiment with removing items from my diet and noticing the effect, or working with a health care practitioner to assess any food sensitivities or allergies.

5 – Have fun!!! Take note of things that energize you and make you happy. They may be creative things like painting, drawing, songwriting, storywriting, etc. They may be physical things such as dancing, hiking or gardening. You may really enjoy cooking, listening to music or visiting with friends. Whatever these things are for you, take note and integrate them in regularly.

6 – Energize – There will possibly be some overlap with some of the topics above, but also note things that inspire you and feed your juicy soul! Perhaps some song(s) or quotes or meditation will really make you feel like a whole new person and get you re-energized to move on. You may even want to do housework or cooking while singing and dancing. I love this! I also found songs that really got me happy and listened to them while driving somewhere (good timesaver, plus you arrive in a very good mood). Other awesome tools are deep breathing techniques. These are not only good for oxygenating the body and brain but also releasing stress! Plus it can be completely free – how cool is that?

7 – Connect with other women and ask for help – I heard a long time ago that women are very social animals. I know I feel much better after having some girl time. This could be with just one friend, or with several or many. It could be a weekly art project, or daily mommy visit with another mommy and baby/kids. Always remember you are not alone and can ask for help from others regarding advice, experience, help with childcare, relationships, etc. Life will go on in all the other areas of your life while you are being a mommy and in response to being a mommy. These experiences will bring up challenges and opportunities for learning and growth for you as a woman, wife, mother and friend, and you may feel overwhelmed, frustrated or confused. It is awesome to ask for help! It provides you the opportunity to connect more with others and practice gratitude while also allowing others to experience helping someone. It also teaches you things that you can then share with someone else you may know who needs some TLC!

Hopefully these will help you on your Mommy adventure. Feel free to add to all the above and modify them in any way that meets your needs in the best way, as well as making any adjustments over time based on  you and your family changing and growing.

Remember, happier, healthier families make a happier, healthier world for all of us.

Thank you for doing the most important thing in the world in such a dedicated and loving way.

Hug attached, Koolma (Mommy)

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