The life of a new mom can be joyous and overwhelming at the same time. Having your little one nap on your chest may be one of the sweetest moments in your life. I remember cuddling my sleeping newborn on the couch for 2 hours, while needing to go to the bathroom for over an hour, just because I couldn’t get enough of his beautiful scent. In contrast, figuring out how to deal with lack of sleep was mind-blowing! No amount of Starbucks coffee can remedy this!
As a new mom, I remember feeling like I was on a deserted island, maneuvering the minutia of daily life with a newborn. I desperately yearned for another mom to talk to, just to normalize what I was going through. I wanted to share my stories with and ask questions of someone who was going through the same thing I was experiencing. My best friends had not taking the leap into motherhood yet, so where could I find my daily dose of sanity support? Here is what I found in my community….hopefully it will lead you to some sanity-saving support in your own neighborhoods.
Four Places I Found Sanity as a New Mom
- Breastfeeding Support Group – I actually recommend checking one out while pregnant. That way you will feel familiar with the locale, parking situation, and the personality of the group. Also, you can ask a ton of your burning questions to the new moms there. Once you have had your baby, it is definitely one place where you won’t get the stink eye if you baby is crying and inconsolable.
- Local Playgroup – Many cities and towns have Meetup groups or local parenting support groups where you can hang out with moms and babies who live near you and are around the same age. In the beginning, our playgroup was all about the moms getting together with our lap-confined little ones. Eventually, we went on outings to the park and the zoo where the kids could run around and get their energy out. I learned so much from these wonderful women! If you live in San Diego, I found my playgroup through Parent Connection.
- Stroller Strides – Brilliant idea…kids in strollers while moms work out and enjoy one another’s company! Once you are cleared by your doctor at 6 weeks, enjoy the outdoors with some friends and your babies. There is no greater mood-lifter than exercising while conversing with friends. Plus, no need for a babysitter.
- Mommy and Me classes – I was a stay-at-home mom for about 6 months. During that time, and on the weekends after I went back to work, I signed myself and my son up for a class every once in a while. We did Baby Sign Language, Mommy and Me Yoga, and a music class. It was comforting to be around other moms/dads and babies, doing activities that I didn’t have to organize. If you live in San Diego, check out the classes at the Baby Garten Studio....they are fabulous!
How do you maintain your sanity as a new mom? What gems can you share with other moms of newborns, infants, and toddlers?