When a child is born, the whole family rejoices the birth and the child. Of course, it’s a celebration. But after the baby is born, the concern and the mental wellbeing of the mother is somewhere becomes least priority or lost in most of the families. When you have a chance to visit a newborn baby, when you check on the baby’s wellbeing, sleep, feedings and etc…, make sure to check on the mother too. Enquire, how is her health? Is she having enough sleep? Does she need help? How about her spending some time with friends? Is she feeling happy? Her wellbeing is very important and needs attention and care.
The Unspoken Post-Partum Depression (PPD)
While getting to know a new mother, there could be several questions pondering your mind. Why she needs time for herself when there is a little baby looking for her presence? Why she looks exhausted and unhappy? Doesn’t she like her baby? Can’t she find happiness in seeing those tiny hands, little feet, and the divine eyes? Of course, she loves those giggles and little eyes. But sometimes it is just the love overdosed.
And most often this could be the baby blues or depression. Holding the little pie in her hands and watching the baby sleep, thinking about the wellness of the newborn and feeling so protective about him/her she is going through a roller coaster of emotions and forgets to take care of her. Sometimes their mind doesn’t want to sleep and never wants to leave the child even while bathing.
Motherhood is fascinating and a new mother’s emotions are sometimes due to her hormonal changes and are beyond her control. It makes her feel helpless and confused as to why she is experiencing them. While for some, the new responsibilities and changes and pain in her body are overwhelming without any help and time to rest.
There could be many unpredictable or unexplainable reasons for a mother to get into a state of depression. But the harsh truth is most women suffer from Post-partum depression after childbirth, irrespective of the type of their birthing. It makes them feel weak, lonely, frustrated, and sometimes suicidal. Hence it is very important to check on the mental health of the new mother from time to time.
Depression is not a disease but a state of mind that sometimes need professional help. However there are few activities, you can do to fight the PPD as a new mother.
1. Walk! Walk! Walk!
A fresh morning walk rejuvenates the soul and body. You would surely be exhausted and have pain after childbirth. But try going on a small walk in the unpolluted fresh air after your physician says you are good to go. Your body will definitely thank you for this refreshing and energetic experience. Walking is not only a good form of exercise, it’s one of the best activities to make you feel energized and keeps your body happy.
When your body experiences the energy, it in turn will strengthen your mind and keep you positive. If you couldn’t spend time outside the house, try walking around your house or on your terrace.
If you are unsure or don’t have much space, try the eight-shaped walking in indoors instead. This walking in the north-south direction towards and against the earth’s magnetic field is said to have numerous health benefits.
Also, there are several videos online practicing walking indoors, fast walking, and so on. Try checking on them and find out which could be suitable for you.
2. Post-Partum Yoga
New mothers can start yoga after 6-8 weeks post-delivery. Consult your doctor and follow recommendations when the delivery is C-Section or had episiotomy in Vaginal. This is to make sure the incision is healed and the body is ready for the stretches.
Make time for yourself, it should be very tough but still, your “me-time” is essential for your wellness. Start with the basic aasanas, which warms up your body, and gradually explore and practice the challenging aasanas and the breath holds. Remember, your abdomen wall and pelvic muscles may take some time to get strong and go back to shape.
Try aasanas to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles. Take a deep breath and enjoy doing the stretches and warm-ups. Feel your mind and body channelizing the energy.
Yoga is always learned the best when studying from a guru. Check for nearby Yoga centers. Don’t forget to give a check online too. These days are many online yoga classes that you can attend. When you learn from a guru, you get to learn more about the breath controls while working on the aasanas.
3. Bright Colors and Brilliant Music – Bright Mood
Colors are an excellent form of positive vibrations. Set up your room with bright colors, this indeed uplifts your mood. Rekindle your childhood hobbies. Be it coloring or crafting, enjoy working with colors. Not necessary you need to be an artist or craft expert. There are thousands of videos online to teach you to draw, paint, knit, craft, and many other activities. Make a small research and start experimenting a new hobby. New adventures help you land somewhere in an interesting place.
Music calms the mind and a happier boon is you can enjoy it even with your baby. A soothing song in low volume running in the background not only keeps your mind composed but also acts as white noise for your child to sleep better. You can even draw zentangle drawings with music playing while your baby is asleep. It is a powerful combo of meditation, color and music.
Hobbies are not only meant to be taken during free time. They keep you relaxed and give you satisfaction and excitement when you explore something new. Many different forms of art exist in the world which doesn’t require perfection, mandala art, warli art, free form art, etc… Take your post-partum period as your time for exploring and enjoy your love for art.
4. Dress uptime
Dressing up is one activity that gets lost in the life of a new mother. It is reasonable with you being constantly busy and don’t find time to look after you. But, we all love and loved to dress up. Dressing up yourselves lets you enjoy yourself. Remember you don’t need to dress to look appealing to anyone who visits you or your baby. Set up a theme and have fun along with the baby. Celebrate the baby’s growth every month.
Plan a photoshoot with different themes and interesting costumes. Go for budget-friendly ideas. Take time to work on the theme and enjoy the photoshoot. If possible get help from your family to do the photo-shoot.
After all, we need some fun time to celebrate motherhood. Explore several fashions and styles. Start that with your baby and partner. Enjoy planning the twinning series. This could be time-consuming and keep you occupied, but it’s all worth it. Give it a try.
After a few years, when you and your child look at those pictures, the joy and smile in your faces are all worth the effort. This will create a lot of memories and stories for you to tell your child when they grow up.
5. Celebrate your body
Your body has been through a lot during labor. Respect and celebrate it. The best way to respect your baby is to get back to your own self. Enjoy warm showers, make time for a parlor visit, and spend some time to head out with your partner, meditate, and connect with your soul.
If you could not get out of the house or couldn’t find any babysitter, try setting a dance floor at home and have fun with friends or with your spouse. Eat your favorite food and occasionally enjoy a grand meal. Good food is a great stress buster. You can order food from outside if you don’t have help.
Post-delivery the mother’s body faces several hormonal changes. Her mind will be full of several questions about the baby. She needs some time to relax and calm down herself and enjoy some “ME” time for herself.
Being in your womb for a long, baby surprise you with how well they connect to you outside the womb. They can very well understand your emotions and sense your state of mind. A happy baby is a true replica of a happy mother. So it is essential for you to take care of yourselves even for the wellbeing of your baby.
Remember raising a child is not just a responsibility of the mother but of both the parents. Take breaks while your partner is looking after the baby. As the saying goes it takes a village to raise a child, never hesitate to ask for help. Share what you feel with your family and friends. Never think about how others will react to your problems and be proud of your body.
Your body and mind have gone through a lot of pain, changes, and emotions. You are one strong person who brought a tiny human to life. Embrace yourself with love and pride.