My daughter turned one just a few months ago. When I look back over the past year to reflect and recap, there are a few things that come to mind as a new mom that I think we can all take to heart and resolve to strive for in the New Year.
If you’ve just had a baby, or are even into the terrible twos- whether it’s your first or your fourth child, I still consider you a New Mom – because we are always learning about ourselves!
Here are my New Year – New Mom Resolutions!
1. Make Small Talk Big – It can feel pretty secluded with a newborn in the house, whether there are other siblings around or in school, and whether you have help or not. Feeding, not sleeping, changing diapers- rinse and repeat. Checking in with family and friends via text didn’t really feel like enough. I resolve to actually DIAL a number on my phone (or put the video ON for overseas friends and family on Skype) to talk to someone at the other end. Sure, I’ll have messy hair and most likely be wearing a shirt with spitup on it. But person-to-person contact and hearing someone’s voice on the other end for anything from advice to solidarity makes a big difference.
2. Small-Scale Victories are just that — Small! Many women (and men, and mothers-inlaw) make an immediate push to ‘lose the babyweight’. Comments from the peanut gallery abound – you look so good “already”! I’ve seen newborn photo shoot outtakes where the mother wore white skinny jeans and held her two week old! (Ok, that was just awesome, actually – so, more power to you, mama!) But- victories on the scale aren’t the only thing that matter. I resolve to pay more attention to my whole health and well-being rather than dialing back the numbers on the scale and fitting into my skinny jeans by 9 months post-partum (newsflash – I didn’t!). Bodies are different after 1, 2, and 3 kiddos. I resolve to buy a new pair of skinny jeans, indulge on special occasions, and try to balance my life without letting gluten, dairy, carbs, or sugars control my mood!
3. Workout Body AND Mind. For about 2 months my daughter wanted only open-air, stroller naps which meant I spent a lot of time at White Rock Lake. At first I just checked facebook while pushing the stroller, looked out over the water, and watched other ‘real’ runners lap me! But about two weeks into the walking I rediscovered my love of podcasts and all of the information that made me feel more connected to history, current events, fiction, or factoids. I resolve to continue to work-out both body AND mind; finding time for reading, studying, questioning, and sweating.
4. Sometimes NO is a LOVE word. We all say NO a lot. Whether it’s to our kids asking for the ipad or to a work-function outside of office hours. Saying no doesn’t always mean you’re the ‘mean mom’ or the ‘Debbie Downer colleague’. Sometimes saying no means saying yes to what’s best for you as well as what’s best for those around you. I resolve to say NO and use it as a love word. One that comes from the heart of a person who simply thinks they’re making the best decision they can for themselves and their family.
5. Night Owls and Early Birds. I am always finding reasons to ‘work’ at night after the kids go to bed. No matter how much work I get done during school hours from my home office, I’m always writing one last email at 11pm (that could have waited until the next day), checking my email at 11:30pm (usually nothing important anyway), and rarely do I make it to bed before midnight. Of course the alarm rings to get the kids up at 6:20am. I know this isn’t sustainable. I resolve to go to bed BEFORE midnight at least 3 times a week. Being well-rested is so important, and honestly I feel like I’ve just been away every 3 hours per night for the past 5 years between newborns, nursing, teething, and sleep regressions. Whenever I do get the rare weekend morning to sleep in (after my husband shuttles all the kids out the door to give me an extra hour) I wake up feeling like I can take on the world!
I wish all of my fellow moms a Happy New Year!