Helping you contain the chaos of motherhood & enjoy its beauty

My Open Letter of Encouragement to New Moms

Dear New Mama,

First of all, congratulations on your sweet little one! Being a mom is going to push you to find strength you didn’t know you had and experience love that you didn’t know was possible. Motherhood is one of the most precious gifts but that doesn’t mean it comes without craziness. In fact, it comes with quite a bit of it and it will take a little time to get used to. Regardless of whatever chaos it brings, it really is all going to be okay. In fact, it will be more than okay. You’re baby will change your life for the better (even if it doesn’t feel like it right now). As I write this letter, my little guy is 15 months old (which seems unreal) and we’ve had many ups and downs together. There were moments I thought we would never make it through, but I promise that you will. (That’s exactly why I wanted to write this letter of encouragement to new moms!) So, here are my best tips from the last 15 beautifully busy months!

Breastfeeding tips for new moms in the hospital | Me cuddling my baby in the wheelchair | Letter of Encouragement to New Mom

The Feeling of Motherhood

Regardless of whether your baby is a few weeks old or a whole year old, I’m sure you have experienced the feeling of motherhood, which involves every conflicting emotion all in one place. Every mom experiences this. It can be confusing, hard, and emotional to deal with day in and day out, especially with the amount of hormones added on top of things. You might cry about forgetting to ask for light ice in your Starbucks drink and then laugh about it a few minutes later. Your baby will push you to feel love like never before and will also push your patience to the limits. 

 

 

There will be moments each day that you simply want some time to yourself. But the moment you lay your little one down to sleep, you will miss them. You will find yourself frustrated when you have to leave your friends without kids to party while you leave to get your kids to bed. But, you will also feel the most overwhelming desire to give up anything for them as they sleep soundly in the car on the way home. 

 

 

You may feel like you can’t take another second of the newborn stage or the “terrible twos” or the “shove everything in their mouths stage” but you will miss it as soon as it’s over. I know it sounds cliche but it’s the truth. Take in every second of every great moment and find the humor in the crazy moments when your toddler breaks a plate from the brand new set you bought or throws applesauce all over your freshly hand washed floor. 

 

 

You might feel a little conflicted and a little crazy for at time. No, you’re not broken. There’s nothing wrong with you. Every mom feels this way. Motherhood is filled with moments where you wish you could have your freedom back, yet you could never imagine a life without your kids in it. It’s confusing but it’s okay. You will slowly begin to sort through the emotion and make sense of it all. It’s okay if it’s confusing and it’s okay if it takes you some time to figure out. There’s no rush. Just soak it all in.

You are Their Mom for a Reason

Never forget that you were hand picked to be the mom of your baby and they need YOU, not some idealistic influencer mom who has all her crap together. They need you, messy bun, sweatpants, coffee and all. They need you to show them how to deal with ups and downs, how to express themselves, how to love with reckless abandon. You are a mom because you have something special to offer. Trust your mom intuition and don’t read too many parenting books. Those nights you spent researching late at night while you freaked out, well…don’t take them into account too much. 

Don’t Be Afraid to Be Bold

You make the rules, not your friends, in laws, parents, or the influencers on social media. Don’t be afraid to tell people how you would like things done. Don’t be afraid to say no when you need to and to kindly remind people that you don’t want unsolicited advice. Every mom is different. Every child is different. While it’s good to hear people out and see what has worked for other people, you don’t have to do things the way that anyone else does them. 

 

Don’t feel pressured to have people over if you aren’t ready for it or you simply don’t want people over. Wouldn’t you want to know if someone didn’t actually want you there? I would. Even people who aren’t moms know that the newborn stage is overwhelming and exhausting. They will understand. Don’t feel pressured to let others hold your baby when you want to be cuddling with them. Don’t be afraid to put them down for a nap even if others want to be holding your baby. Do what is best for your baby unashamedly. If people get mad, just blame me. 

Don’t Take Photos TOO Often

Of course every mom is so incredibly proud of their child the moment they enter this world and with that comes 100s of pictures a day. They sleep so darn cute! There are all kinds of adorable outfits to photograph! And by the time they start cooing and crawling, your Google storage will be completely full. Trust me. All that being said though,  I would encourage you to do your best to set the phone down and simply enjoy each moment. Look around you and take in the sights, smells, and sounds. Stare into your baby’s eyes and soak in every second. 

Give Yourself Time

Make sure you are listening because this is probably the most important thing of this whole letter of encouragement to new moms. Don’t listen to the hype about “bouncing back” after having a baby! Just don’t do it. It’s not worth the stress and the tears.  Instead, take the time to sit back and show your body some gratitude. It built a person and then pushed it out, it deserves some love and a little break!  It is absolutely amazing what the female body is capable of. Take some time to acknowledge all that your body has been through and allow it time to rest. Think through how you would treat your friend who just had a baby and how you would encourage them to rest. Then do that for yourself, because you deserve that too. 

 

 

Babies don’t just change your body, they change everything about your world. Life with a baby is absolutely beautiful but it is definitely different. Allow yourself time to find balance in the cooking, cleaning, social outings, etc. It’s going to take some time to figure out. It’s not the end of the world if you order dinner in a few nights or leave the dishes in the sink to get a few extra cuddles in with your baby. Go get that Door Dash free trial girlfriend. Have patience with yourself and don’t expect a pristine home and a beach body right away. The only one that is being hard on you is yourself. Give yourself time and it will all come together. 

Be Patient with Your Husband Too

Just like you need to be patient with yourself, your husband will need your patience too. While his role is different, he is figuring things out just like you are. Communicate with him. Actually, over communicate with him. Let him know what you need, and give him some time to figure out the dad thing too. Remember, you are on the same team and you both want to raise an awesome human. It might get tense for a bit as you each learn your roles individually and your role together as a parent unit. But, the tension will ease and you two will have your time again. Just continually remind yourself that you are on the team through all that. 

Make Time for You

Even if it is only 5 or 10 minutes, do something for yourself each day. You can’t take care of your baby well if you don’t take care of yourself first. Read a little something, sit with a coffee for a few minutes before your baby gets up, make plans with a friend, or just take a second to do your nails. You may have to get up 10 minutes earlier, but having a little time to yourself will give you far more mental and emotional capacity to tackle the day. If you need ideas for your me time, check out my article on 35 Me Time Ideas for Moms

 

Find balance and be intentional about you. Don’t underestimate the power of a little movement! Walks with a stroller or a stroller strength workout are a great way to get some movement in with a little one and support your mental, emotional, and physical strength all at once! You’re important too and taking care of yourself is not selfish. It’s so insanely important.

Try to Stay Flexible

Routines are great when they work and I do encourage you to make them. But with that said, you also need to be fully aware that those routines will get broken on a regular basis, probably daily if I’m honest. Your baby may normally go to bed at 7:00pm but if they get to bed at 7:01 or even 7:30 (eeeek) because you are out with friends, the world will not explode and theirs won’t either. 

 

 

As your baby gets older, they will spit out and throw the food that they loved yesterday, they will cry over who knows what, and they will always without fail get poop on a new outfit the first time they wear it. Sometimes sh** quite literally hits the fan… It’s okay to be frustrated and it’s okay to shift gears. In fact, it’s good to encourage your child to be flexible from the beginning.

Remember...

So to wrap it all up mommas, just remember…

 

  • It’s okay to feel more than one emotion at once
  • You are the right mom for your child
  • You make the rules
  • Fight the urge to take pictures of everything all the time
  • Appreciate your body and be patient with yourself
  • Remember that you are on the same team with your husband
  • Don’t forget to make time for you even if it is only a few minutes
  • Don’t be surprised if things don’t go to planned and do your best to take it in stride

 

Pass this letter of encouragement to new moms  onto any of your mama friends because every new mom needs encouragement once in a while. Plain and simple, you’ve got this and you are not alone!

-Beautifully Busy Mom

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