As a new mom again, I knew early on that I would need help juggling a newborn and a toddler for a few weeks. I just wasn’t sure exactly what that help would look like.
I asked my family to allow us to take it one day at a time. What we need help with today, we may not need two weeks from now, and vice versa. I’m so thankful they were patient, understanding and flexible as best they could with us.
Below is a list of some easy and practical ways we recently received help. These proved to be more necessary than we realized and very much appreciated. I hope this list will come in handy next time you want to offer help to new parents’… or even ask for it yourself.
8 Easy Ways to Help a New Mom After Baby
Tidying up around the house, vacuum, laundry, washing dishes, tidying young kids rooms. It’s easy for the house chores to fall behind, so having someone do simple things like washing dishes, and taking care of the kids’ laundry helped bring some normalcy to our home.
Bring a Meal
It could be something you pick up on the way to the visit or something you prepared at home. Even if they aren’t able to eat it right away, something that’s easy to freeze and thaw for the next day is great. Give the parents a day or two to think about what they have a taste for. And if they say surprise me, ask if anyone has any allergies or certain ingredients they do not like.
Bring Groceries or Snacks
It can be general things that get used up quickly like dairy products, breakfast items, drinks, soup, etc. Also, quick snacks for the mom to munch on throughout the day between meals. Something quick, light and healthy to give a boost of energy, raise sugar levels, or even fulfilling a craving would be so helpful. Think granola bars, fresh cut fruit, fruit cups, peanut butter crackers, etc.
Spend Time with Older Siblings
With a new baby, they demand a lot of attention, often leaving older siblings in the shadows. Take them out for an outing, stay in and play with them, watch a movie, etc. Anything one on one that allows them to gain positive attention, stay occupied and engaged.
Check in on Mom
She may not be able to answer your calls and texts right away like before. But leaving a voicemail or a simple text of “I’m thinking of you, hope all is well” does help to bring some reconnection to the outside world. If she opens up, offer an ear and your support.
Get Mom Out the House
A quick getaway for an hour or so, may be all she needs to reconnect with self, others and feel somewhat normal again. Especially for that new mom who may be feeling overwhelmed and wants some uninterrupted time to talk and catch up with friends. Brunch, Lunch, Dinner or anything in between is great.
Mom and Dad don’t always have to leave the house to get a break. I was able to get naps during the day and showers because someone was home to watch and feed Kingston. It also came in handy for running errands or going to appointments too. Offer an hour or two as you’re able.
Find Out What the Baby Needs
Sometimes everything is not fulfilled from a baby shower, or they end up needing something extra. Diapers, Wipes, Formula, Supplies, etc. You don’t have to buy everything, anything helps.
Photo Source : Post Partum Stress Center
A few things to also keep in mind:
Do not pressure acceptance of help
Allow Mom time to process and gather her bearings as the family adjusts to a new member.
Keep visits short and sweet
Unless you’re staying to help around the house, keep the visits short and sweet (no more than an hour) – especially in the first couple of weeks.
Do not show up unannounced
Ask the parents what day and time of day works best for them.
Do not take things personally
If text messages or phone calls are not returned immediately (or even the same day), give Mom a pass. Remember her world has been flipped and the forgetful fog of Mom-Brain is real. If it’s not an emergency and you’re not pressed for an immediate response, just give her grace and follow up the next day.
8 Easy Ways to Help a New Mom After Baby
If you’re the one on the receiving end, try not to be ashamed to ask and receive help once you’re ready. There are people who want to help, they just may need a little direction from you. Soak it all in and take all the help you need and are comfortable with.
Do you have your own practical and easy ways to offer a new Mom help? List them below in the comments. I’d love to read them!
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