Helpful Tips for New Moms

Helpful Tips for New Moms

By Leslie Vandever

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These days, it seems like new mothers have the world—almost literally—at their fingertips. Between the Internet, cable TV, smartphones and tablets, just about any question you might have about caring for your new baby can be answered in moments. Being a super-mom is a breeze.

 Isn’t it?

What the slick websites often gloss over as they shout about the five best baby foods, the perfect diaper/laptop/baby carrier, the latest fashions for the well-dressed 9-month-old, and baby’s first smartphone is you. Mom. You’re not even used to being called “mom,” yet, let alone feel like you’ve got it all under control.

So if you’re feeling a little low, a little let-down and you’re singing the blues, well, don’t worry. You’re normal.

The high estrogen and progesterone levels your body ramped up and maintained during your pregnancy are no longer needed, so they’re dropping rapidly back to normal. These hormones can play havoc with your mood. Being happy, then sad, then tearful, then angry and then happy again in the same 15-minute-stretch is normal.

Tip 1: Remember you’re only human. Your body is changing again. It can’t help but stir up your emotions. It will get better.

After the baby is born, your internal organs suddenly have all kinds of space in there again. Your stomach isn’t squashed up against your lungs, no one is kicking your liver or elbowing your spleen, and your intestines are slipping back into their spacious old nest below your belly-button. Your whole body is reverting back, as much as it can, to its pre-pregnancy shape. You can almost hear it saying “ahhh.”

Tip 2: Forgive yourself if you’re not feeling great. Change is never comfortable.

Since you came home with the baby, you haven’t slept more than a couple of hours at a stretch. There’s always something to do: feed her, burp her, clean her up, rock her to sleep, put her in her crib. Then the laundry needs to be done, and that supper isn’t going to cook itself. And then the baby will cry, and you’ll change her diaper. Then she’ll be hungry, so you’ll feed her, and… and… and.

Tip 3: Don’t be embarrassed to ask a relative or friend for help, even if it’s just for an hour or so now and then. During your hour or so off, you’re only allowed to care for yourself. Get a manicure. Take a long nap. Read a book, or go out for a coffee with a friend. Do anything, but do it for you.

 When you read about motherhood on the Internet or see moms on television and in movies, it seems like they’re so good at the whole thing. They don’t want to cry when the baby cries. They’re always patient and gentle. Their babies look like perfect little bundles of happiness. So what’s up with you? Are you a sub-par mom, or what?

Tip 4: Keep it real. You’re doing just fine at motherhood. Remember the baby didn’t come with a manual, and you’re learning on the job. Remember to give yourself credit for every single thing you do right.

You keep telling yourself you’re doing just fine, but down inside you’re feeling worthless or guilty. It seems like the “baby blues” ought to be over by now, but they’re not. In fact, they’re getting worse.

Tip 5: If you’re feeling low and depressed, and the feeling isn’t going away or getting better, talk to someone. Talk to your partner, or a relative, a friend or your pastor. Or call your family doctor and let her know how you’re feeling. She can help you get back on track.


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Leslie Vandever is a professional journalist and freelance writer. She also writes a blog about living well with rheumatoid arthritis called RheumaBlog, under the pen-name “Wren.” In her spare time, Vandever enjoys cooking, reading and working on the Great American Novel.


GUEST POST: Thanksgiving: Thornton Style and Live From Chicago!

Today’s Guest Post is from Kendra! Just a lil bit about her!

She contacted me a few weeks back and thought you would all enjoy a thanksgiving special. You can follow her over on Twitter:

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– I was the former Director of Communications at Orbitz
– I am now a full time mom of three great kids
– I love to travel and spend time with my family being active!

It is that time of year again. Everywhere I look I see gorgeous colored leaves in tones of gold, orange, and warm browns falling from the trees, and each evening there is chilliness in the air that reminds me of warm fires and snuggly blankets. Calls and emails are flowing back and forth between family members and me as we firm up plans for the upcoming holiday season! Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of year because it is a time to celebrate giving back to others and your community, while taking the time to be thankful for all the blessings I have in my life. To add to the excitement, this year the Thornton family is hosting the holidays for all of our relatives right here in Chicago! This makes the holiday even more special!

My kids love to help me in the kitchen, so I have been searching through the pages of Pinterest for tasty appetizer and fun desserts that we can make together. Each year, my kids get a little older and they become more and more interested in working with mom in the kitchen. The only downside is that the more complicated the recipe the larger the mess we make in the kitchen. I have learned the simpler the better when it comes to cooking with kids in the kitchen. However, we do not sacrifice taste or cuteness for simplicity. The goal is to find great treats that are fast and fun to make!

I have yet to find anything to take the place of a delectable, traditional Thanksgiving meal. There are certain dishes that are staple items for the day, such as mashed potatoes and gravy (my personal favorite), stuffing, and cranberry sauce. Of course, the turkey is the ultimate staple item on my table each Thanksgiving. With family coming this year, I have decided to try a couple of new recipes that could become old favorites. In my former life I accrued a lot of travel experience, so I am always reading about up on travel news. I found an exciting article detailing exciting menu items that luxury hotels will be serving to their guests this Thanksgiving!

Armed with some fabulous ideas from the article I decided this was the year to try a new spin on old favorites. I am a little nervous and hopeful that my family will enjoy the new selections, but isn’t Thanksgiving the perfect time to try something new and adventurous? The Waldorf Astoria in Orlando is serving up an exciting velvety pumpkin soup with lobster this Thanksgiving for their guests. What a great way to start a holiday meal! This is my first must try recipe, because there is nothing like soup to warm you body, heart, and soul!

I have so many things to be thankful for in my life. Here at the Thornton home, we go around the table and let each family member tells us one thing that they are grateful for. Maybe this year our family tradition can become your family tradition. My hope is that each of you has an amazing and safe holiday filled with love and family, including scrumptious food and new memories!
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