Remembering To Breathe… Help For The Overwhelmed Mommies

One of the biggest lessons I got out of having kids (that I still use to this day) is remembering the power of simply breathing.

When you have a new little human being that is completely dependent on you for EVERYTHING, 24/7, it is a much larger job that one is usually prepared for when they take it on. Not just that, but it comes back every day, all day long, if you are a stay-at-home mommy, like I was. Also, our society evolved, for some silly reason, to have the nuclear family rather than the extended family. This puts pretty much everything onto the parents. If they are lucky enough to have other friends or family nearby and willing and able to assist, it can help with the immensity of parenting. Otherwise, you are pretty much on your own to take it on or create a support network where you are – which I highly encourage.

If you are doing the bulk of it yourself, like I did, I found it best to:

1 – Keep your life very simple. Focus on the basics of survival, like eating and sleeping, and give yourself permission to let everything else slide, if needed. This can help protect your sanity, however make sure your partner is on board with this and understands, so they can be supportive through the piles of dirty laundry and undone dishes, etc. Otherwise, you will have additional difficulties.

2 – Do your best to work as a team (if you have a partner), so that at least some of your time together each day, or as your schedule allows, is to give you a break for whatever is most important at that time – remember that self care should be very high on the list (see #3), not just all the cooking and cleaning stuff.

3 – Take care of yourself. If you don’t have your health and happiness, pretty much everything else will fall by the wayside in no time at all. Things as simple as reading your favorite magazine while the baby is sleeping next to you or taking the time to meditate and focus on what you are thankful for to build your spirits and positive outlook can be extremely beneficial, even when done in small amounts. I also think it is a really good idea to nap as often as possible with your baby to make sure you are getting enough rest, and to help them sleep for longer periods of time – less crankiness all the way around that way.

4 – Keep reminding yourself that things are changing quickly and eventually the baby will sleep through the night, or for much longer stretches. They will eventually be able to talk and walk and understand more and more, and maybe even be able to help with some of the daily to-do’s, so be patient with what is going on now, do your best to surrender to it and come up with creative solutions to make whatever is going on now (i.e., clinginess, only sleeping for short amounts of time, nursing frequently, etc.) work in the best way possible, as this too will pass.

5 – Do your best to have at least some opportunity on a consistent basis, even if rather sparse, to have personal time in a larger pocket than mentioned in #3 above, for creativity or doing something beneficial or rejuvenating at this time – like soaking in the tub, getting a massage or going shopping for a much needed or desired personal item.

6 – Also, on a consistent, even if rather sparse basis, spend some time cultivating your relationship. As with personal care, this can and needs to be done daily in small pockets of time and interactions like good morning and good night hugs and goodbye kisses, but occasionally in larger amounts such as a date or simply watching a movie together, etc. You want to help insure that your relationship is as strong as possible and you maintain your loving connection through this experience. Remember, you are in this together, and approaching it that way can be the very best thing. It also helps to focus on and express your appreciation for each other – this can make all the difference in the world.

7 – Do things regularly to help both you and your baby have other things to enjoy, experience and focus on. Things like taking a walk, going to a park, or getting together with other new moms to visit and enjoy some interaction. Just going outside can often totally shift the focus of a fussy baby – weather permitting, of course. You can also put on some music and dance with them in your arms.

8 – Although there are probably many, many other things that would help or be beneficial in various situations, the last thing I am going to mention in this post is the magical, powerful and completely free (so far) method for helping in any situation – Breathing. If you notice you are having a very difficult time, parenting or otherwise, always remember to take a break somehow and take as many nice deep calming breaths as you have the time for. This is timeless and will also come in handy through the years, even when they are teenagers….¬† : )

Here are a couple links to info on an amazing man, Stig Severinsen, who has used deep yogic breathing for astounding results, like being able to hold his breath for 22 minutes!! He also talks about the other mental and health benefits of breathing and breath control check it out here and here.

Blessings to you and thanks for all the loving parenting you do.

Hug attached,

Koolma  : )



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