I had the most beautiful baby a few weeks ago! I was prepared this time I thought. I’d consumed all kinds of materials and I was going to make this postpartum period my best yet.
On the evening we left the hospital, a lockdown was announced in my province due to the corona virus. This meant that my two very active toddlers would not be going to school as planned. It didn’t help that I’d read books like the fourth trimester just before putting to bed and bought into the narrative from my husband and friends that I needed the village to get through this period. All the plans in place such as having a nanny, quiet time with my baby and daily support very quickly went to shambles.
The first week was extremely hard and filled with lots of pains, feeding woes, and a ton of tears. The support we’d arranged had to be canceled in order to maintain social distancing during this period, so did the food we ordered.
The following 7 non negotiables have helped me in getting my groove back:
Lots of us are in fight or flight mode and resisting this new normal with all of our might. Accepting my new normal devoid of all the plans I’d made and making the most of what I currently have has been huge for me.
Whatever you focus on expands. Rather than looking at all of this ‘craziness’ and wondering why all of this is happening to you, you can choose to believe that it’s all happening for you. What positives have resulted from this period? I get to spend more time with my family and that’s awesome.
Prayers have an incredible effect on the state of mind and body. You want to do more of this if you’re a praying person. I’m very big on prayers and feel quite blessed to have this during these times. I use prayer in whatever form possible and always feel better afterwards.
Grounding morning (or whenever!) routines:
Morning routines such as meditating, exercising etc. typically set the tone for the rest of the day and set you up for success and there is also a growing body of research to back this up. I can’t think of a better time than now to start one if you don’t have one yet. You can also schedule them at timings that are convenient if mornings don’t work. My morning routines very quickly went out the window during that first week of being home with my newborn as my mornings were no longer predictable. Reviving these rituals and fitting them in however I can during the day have done wonders in keeping me sane. Let’s just say that I no longer have any objection to meditating in the bathroom in the afternoon, taking a walk in the early evening or gratitude journaling at night.
Enlist the help of the village at your disposal
Who is your village in this new normal? Who can you have a zoom or FaceTime call with to help you with that recipe you finally have the time to try? My village in this new normal consists of my husband and toddlers (as well as the occasional sister/friend on the phone) and everyone’s support is needed to get through the day.
One goal a day
This new normal is one which EVERYONE is still trying to get accustomed to. Cut yourself some slack and don’t beat yourself up when you don’t achieve all 12 bullet points on your to do list. I had so many things planned before the lockdown and focusing on achieving just one goal a day keeps me focused and more importantly, keeps the angst of not achieving anything out. A goal for the day could be as simple as drinking all the water in my 2 liter bottle a day, reading to my boys at bedtime or writing this article. Think of anything above one goal as a perk and reward yourself for it! 🙂
Podcasts and audiobooks (not the news!)
Listening to podcasts and audiobooks are a great way to learn and stay inspired especially during these times. As a personal development junkie, these go a long way in making those 4am and frankly around the clock feeds a lot easier. Avoid the news and get information on the pandemic from trusted sources.
It is very easy at a time like this to give in to the fear of uncertainty. A simple perspective shift however, can make all the difference.