Having a baby is a bagged of mixed emotions for me. There is magic, warmth, deep love, and expansion. And in the same breath there are challenges, restrictions, and... tears.
Our Wesley boy has been encountering some health obstacles. We originally thought it was colic and digestive problems, but after waking up to see a rash and breakouts all over his body one morning (and rushing to the pediatrician), we learned more about what has been making him so unhappy. He has lower digestive tract issues (his diapers informed us of that!), a severe allergy to milk and soy, and slight reflux.
Sleepless days and nights, extreme crying bouts and breakouts have us a bit drained, but I am thankful that Mike and I are working together so well. He sees when I am low and steps in with high energy and vice versa. Also those adorable baby reflex smiles tend to come in right at the perfect time to melt my heart. And to be honest, I'd like to contribute a couple key factors to keeping my sanity in place. I am focusing on the small things that make me feel human and somewhat put together. Grounded is a good word to call it. I encourage anyone who is in a transitional phase (that has the ability to throw off your whole schedule and sense of being) to find little things to hang on to. Here are mine:
-Mike and I value a very clean house with little clutter. Each day we have been putting time aside while Wesley naps to deep clean one room while also straightening up the rest of the house. This makes our mind feel more open and clear. Now to keep it real- sometimes those naps are twenty minutes in length so I gotta move fast! I said to Mike his morning that when he shuts his eyes it's like I have fire coming out of my feet... I move at a whole new speed now that I have a baby and want to get things done!
-Before I left the hospital, the nurse looked at me dead in the eyes and said, "Honey, make sure you get in a warm shower before noon every single day. It will make you feel put together and all women need that when they have an infant on their hands." I have taken her suggestion to heart and have successfully showered more times than not before noon. She is right. It makes you feel fresh and alive... even when inside you are a little zombie like.
-Writing has been something I always enjoyed and that is one reason why I choose to write these Success Secrets. I also enjoy keeping a connection with all of you. About six weeks before I gave birth, I sat down and pumped out many newsletters/blogs thinking I most likely wouldn't have time with a newborn to write them weekly like I used to. But guess what- I am sitting here on the couch typing this while Wesley sleeps, Mike is paying bills, and Elton John (Piano Man) is playing in the background. I missed writing and it is a little part of me that I can continue during this transition. So I am making it happen even when I probably should be napping too. But this feels right and I am going to continue.
-Movement. Moving my body has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I know that you should not exercise until you are cleared by the doctor, but they do encourage walks and a little movement. After one week of laying around with the little one, I was starting to go stir crazy. I made a pact with myself that I will do some sort of movement for my body a couple times per week until I am cleared to workout. This looks like walks with Wesley in the stroller, light pilates arm exercises, breathing exercises for my core and light stretches for my legs. It feels so incredibly good to focus on my body even if it is for 10 minutes. I cherish that time.
-Support groups. Right now in my life I am a part of three support groups- all created and held by women. Each group has a different focus- health, healing, and business. However the main focus in all of them is self love and encouragement. Without all the positive energy, advice, personalities and drive these women provide for me, I don't know where I would be mentally. They show up for me daily and I for them. It is so important to have that in your life!
Of course I can throw in other little things like putting on a bit of makeup each day, making sure I consume some vegetables daily, or drinking enough water, but those things are the icing on the cake. Finding your stream of positivity you can hold on to during times of disarray (whatever that may be for you) will be the best thing you can do for yourself. It may be challenging during tough times to make yourself put one foot in front of the other, but once you start, I promise you won't regret it!
Now I encourage you to make your list....