How to Succeed as a New Mom
You made it! After 9 months of physically growing another human being inside of you, your baby is finally here. There really is no possible way to explain what being a new mom is like, until you experience it yourself. If you are like me you have waited years, actually decades for this moment. You are now a few weeks, months, or maybe a year or two into this new gig and it hits you like a ton of bricks – none of your parenting plans, ideas or methods are working like you thought they would! Hang with me for a bit and I will give you the secret of how to succeed as a new mom.
Maybe you have found yourself in a place where you can relate to one of the following scenarios:
-Apparently, you have the only child that is allergic to the $30 organic sensitive skin lotion that had perfect reviews on Amazon.
-Despite your wishes Desitin is working better than Burt’s Bees at clearing up the diaper rash.
-Your desperately miserable teething toddler wants nothing to do with the amber necklace that seems to soothe everyone else’s children.
Your goal of being the “perfect mom” is being thrown out the window on an hourly basis – but don’t beat yourself up about it. All you need to do is change your perspective if you want to learn how to succeed as a new mom.
You see, all you have to do is let go. Let go of what you thought parenting was going to be like. Let go of the thousands of expecations. Instead, find the place where you can start to enjoy what actually is instead of focusing on what is not. There is a quote that says , “When you let go, you create space for something better”. I am here to tell you that BALANCE is the “something better”. Learning this lesson was a huge part of creating Simply-Well-Balanced. It wasn’t until I was able to let go of the pressure I was putting on myself that I truly began to enjoy parenting.
Letting go doesn’t mean you completely abandon your general beliefs about parenting, nutrition, discipline etc. It just means that you give yourself grace and the space to be flexible. If you are feeling anxious, stressed or frustrated as a new parent it is most likely because you are creating rigid ideals. Keep those ideals, but allow for some wiggle room in order to improve your outlook tremendously.
You are fortunate to have made it this far into parenting before needing this lesson. There are many moms out there who receive this message much earlier in the process. The mothers who are told their baby has a defect during what was supposed to be an exciting sonogram. The mothers who find out their child has a severe food allergy. The mothers of babies that were born early and they don’t get to take home from the hospital for months. All of these mothers have learned this lesson quickly, like ripping off a band-aid. Their realities do not allow them to dwell on what they had hoped parenting would be like. They are present in the day to day requirements of what it takes to keep their child alive – even if they aren’t the methods and practices that they thought they would be using. For these mothers, finding balance between what is best for their children and their goals as a parent is a matter of life and death.
If you are still thinking that there is only one right way to be a parent you must read I’m Not a “Crunchy” Mom Anymore by Kylie @ Northwest Arkansas Moms Blog. She perfectly captures the desperation we all feel to do what is best for our children – and shows that what your child needs is not always what you wanted them to have.
Seriously, I wish I would have come across this article when I was a new mom. I really think it would have helped me to have a better perspective on the pressure I was putting on myself. As a more “experienced” mom, I now look back on those first few years and I realize that I was so focused on parenting a certain way that I wasn’t focused enough on what really mattered. What really matters to your child is that they have parents who are joyful, calm and available. If you put so much pressure on yourself as a parent that you are stressed, angry and distracted then all your efforts are for naught anyway. That is definitely not how to succeed as a new mom.
If you haven’t already followed the link to read Kylie’s entire post – I want to leave you with this quote to serve you as a “cliff notes” version of how to succeed as a new mom:
“All of a sudden, I wasn’t so obsessed with being a perfect “natural” mama, because truth be told: I was so stressed out I couldn’t handle those standards. And I STILL can’t. So I’m letting that perfectionism fly far away from me. You should too.” Kylie Northwest Arkansas Moms Blog
Good luck to all you new mamas out there!
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