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Embracing the Fourth Trimester

Congratulations on welcoming your precious baby into the world! The postpartum period can be beautiful and challenging as you navigate the uncharted waters of caring for your newborn while going through your own recovery. As a mom of three, I want to share some nurturing tips that might help I've discussed with other mums that I hope helps.

1. Give Yourself Patience and Gentleness 

In these initial weeks and months, extend to yourself the gift of patience and gentleness repeatedly. Take it as easy as you can! There are no musts. Get to know yourself again and your little one during a time when your body undergoes recovery and hormonal shifts at the same time as your baby is getting used to the outside world.

2. Delegate to Your Support Team

Femique-family

Photo by Felicia Enberg

Create a support team and lean on them. Ask your partner to project manage and help delegating tasks such as housework and meal preparation so you can disconnect. That can allow you to create mental headspace to focus on your little one and potential siblings and yourself instead of delegating what everyone else can do. Let go of thoughts such as "doing it all" and communicate closely with a potential partner so they can help.

3. Prioritize Rest

While easier said than done, the adage "sleep when the baby sleeps" holds profound wisdom. Prioritize rest to aid in your healing process and navigate the demands of a newborn's feeding schedule. In those quiet moments when the baby is asleep, choose a nap over household chores. Be gentle with your body as it embarks on its healing journey. It honestly took me 3 babies to do this, so don't beat yourself up if you're not doing it initially. 

4. Hydrate

Photo by Laura Mitulla on Unsplash

Keep a favorite water bottle close by to ensure you stay hydrated post-labor and, if applicable, during breastfeeding. Hydration is even more crucial for your well-being and recovery during this time. Believe me, you will be thirsty!

5. Eat Nutrient Rich Foods

As much as you will be thirsty you might also be very hungry during this time. I was! Your body is going through recovery so nutritious food as helpful! Keeping a stocked snack basket to where you are can be helpful and if you have any thoughts about "bouncing back" let go of the pressure. Your body is slowly healing itself and remind yourself you are in recovery! Different cultures celebrate this in a beautiful way, so I think we will write a separate blogpost about that. 

6. Stay Connected to Your Doctor

If you feel like something isn't right reach out to your doctor. It's different in countries when you see them after having given birth. In Dubai for example I met with mine already after two weeks while I know in some countries you don't see them until after 8 weeks. Disregard, share your physical and mental experiences during postpartum check-ins with your doctor. They are there to guide you through any challenges that may arise, providing essential support for your well-being.

7. Connect with Other Moms

Femique-women

Photo by Felicia Enberg

Motherhood is a unique journey, and having a network of fellow moms can significantly contribute to your mental and emotional well-being. Because you can bounce thoughts with them. Reach out with your questions, fears, or simply for a supportive conversation if you need a reminder that you’re an amazing mom! Remember, you're not alone on this incredible adventure.

8. Seek Breastfeeding Support

Breastfeeding can work easily or with challenges both is totally normal! Remember that you are not alone and there's a lot of support you can get. Seek guidance from a lactation consultant for support with latch issues, positioning, clogged ducts, or any other breastfeeding concerns. Don't hesitate to ask earlier rather than later as this will help you a lot! A smoother and more enjoyable breastfeeding experience awaits you and your baby with the right assistance.

9. Celebrate Your Body

Femique-body

Photo by Felicia Enberg

Celebrate your body's incredible journey during and after pregnancy. Understand that changes are part of the process—normal and beautiful. Embrace self-acceptance, recognizing the strength and beauty that reside within you. All bodies are different and if you notice yourself scrolling on instagram feeling bad for how your body looks then shut down instagram for a while. I promise it does wonders!

10. Small Moments of Self-Care

Incorporate even the smallest self-care moments into your daily routine. Although you might not be able to take a bath those first few weeks a shower can do wonders. Stealing moments to close your eyes, taking a stroll in nature, or calling a dear friend these small acts of self-love contribute to your overall well-being.

11. Teamwork with Your Partner

 

 Mother and father holding their baby's hand

Photo by Pinterest

 

Strengthen the bond with your partner through open communication. Your significant other plays a vital role in your postpartum journey. Discuss expectations, share responsibilities, and foster teamwork to navigate this transformative time together.

12. Embrace Your Unique Parenting Style

Understand that there's no one-size-fits-all approach to parenting. Your family is unique, and it's perfectly okay to adapt and adjust parenting styles based on what works best for you. Trust your intuition and embrace the flexibility that comes with crafting your parenting journey. Just as you are getting to know your little one you are now getting to know yourselves as parents. 

13. Cherish Every Small Victory

Celebrate the small wins in your motherhood journey. Whether it's the joy of successful breastfeeding, the first night of restful sleep, or finding a moment of calm amidst the chaos, these victories deserve acknowledgment and celebration. Cherish these precious moments—they're milestones in your motherhood story.

As we wrap up these tips and hacks, remember that you're doing an incredible job.

From one mom to another, I know the journey isn't always easy, but it's filled with moments of love, connection, and growth. Keep cherishing those beautiful moments with your baby, and may these insights make your path a bit smoother. 

You've got this, and remember…

You're never alone on this incredible adventure. 

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