I was over the moon to finally be able to hold my beautiful daughter in my arms. She was perfect and squishy and oh, oh so cuddly. So, I cuddled her every opportunity I got. I had thankfully done some pre-reading about the 4th trimester so I was prepared to have a clingy little ball. For the first few days Rose slept pretty well, she would nap in a rocker during the day or her own bed next to ours at night. Then after a few days she wouldn’t have a bar of it anymore. All she wanted to do was be held. Naturally I resisted to having a small human attached to me most of the day, mainly because there were things I wanted to do. I had great aspirations of sewing during my maternity leave and building myself a home business so I didn’t have to go back to work. Rose had other plans, I discovered very quickly I was not a cry it out mum, so my only option was to hold my new babe while she slept… and slept and slept.
The days turned into weeks and the weeks into months and before I knew it I’d been holding my daughter for all of her naps, until she was around 6 months old. Around this time I also had some issues with breastfeeding and I was starting to get depressed and frustrated. I was just sad, directionless, anxious, lonely and really bored. I also started coming off some medications that had been helping me with breastfeeding, which were having adverse effects. On a side note if you ever take high doses of Fenugreek make sure you wean yourself off. I think I cried for a week when I went off it cold turkey.
So here I was sad, lonely, and directionless stuck at home with a rather demanding 6 month old and I decided I needed to start doing some things for me. I went looking for a mothers group, not as easy as you’d think as I’d left it quite late to find one, but I eventually managed to find some other local mums which has lead to opening up a whole new social world for myself. We get out of the house at least once a week and we’ve met lots of new mum friends. So this was the lonely part sorted.
My daughter was starting to occupy herself more and more which meant she didn’t need me as much during her awake times. It was then I decided It was time to reactivate some of my hobbies! I downloaded a pattern to make Rose a new outfit… I reckon it probably took me 3 weeks to make the first outfit. By the time I printed and cut out the pattern, with Roses help of course and actually found pockets of 10 minutes here and there to sew. I created one beautiful onsie. It was also around this time my husband bought me a jigsaw puzzle, 5000 pieces!! Luckily we have a huge dining room table as it takes up 2/3 of the table. Now I didn’t just have things to do all day, I was busy! The puzzle still isn’t completed 6 months later, but I’ve sewn so many things since I started and I’m even trying to liven up my Etsy Shop, which you can check out here.
While not much, these things made me start to feel more like myself, my days had direction and fun again. Not just a monotonous feeding and sleeping routine. It also meant I enjoyed my daughter more, because I was happier and more fulfilled. When you’re a new mum its hard to prevent your whole world revolving around this new being, and for the first few months its fruitless to try and fight that. But as your little one settles and you begin to sleep a little more and have a smidge more time, make sure you find something for you. Even if its reading your favourite novels again, scrapbooking, cleaning the house, or baking. Whatever it is, if it bring YOU joy then find time to do just 10 minutes of it.
Let me know in the comments what you’ve done to find your way back to yourself after having a baby.
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