Being a mom and starting a family has always been part of the dream. But now that it’s all here and you really are a mom, life has changed drastically in ways you could never have predicted. So although we can easily come by parenting tips and how-tos for handling our kids, it often feels like there’s a lot we couldn’t have prepared for. You may be wondering: is there really such a thing as life after kids?
Well, I’m here to tell you that there is! There is still life beyond your kids and it’s yours for the taking. Read on to learn about how you can cope with life changes after having kids!
This is the first and most important tip we can give you. #MomLife has so many rollercoaster-like turns and it can often leave you feeling down at the end of the day and make you doubt yourself as a mom, wife, and woman. You have a million and one things to do all day for the entire family and it’s only normal for you to wonder if you can accomplish it all–let alone if you are doing a good job at it. But hey, it’s true when they say that everyone goes through these things. So you’re definitely not alone!
It may help to start your day by taking a look at yourself in the mirror, not to judge or criticize, but to gently assess where you are at this point in time and to reassure yourself that while you are not necessarily a “perfect” mom, you are you, the best mom your kids could ever have. More and more moms are now swearing by affirmations and meditations, so try and give them a go! When you wake up in the morning, look at yourself in the mirror and tell yourself out loud: You are the best mom for your kids and you are doing a great job!
Remember how you used to have hobbies? You had time to read and actually finish reading a book, binge-watch series after series (with your own snacks), and go on road trips, all while blasting your favorite songs on the radio. You might not have had time to do these things lately, but that doesn’t mean you won’t ever.
Although you may not be as spontaneous as you used to, try to enjoy making the most out of planning your next trip or your next project and make sure you follow through. You can also set aside at least 30 minutes each day to create something, read a chapter or two, or watch some episodes after you put the kids to sleep. If you still have chores left to do at night, that would be the perfect time to pull up your favorite playlist on Spotify or listen to a podcast to have some tunes while you work.
Don’t discount the power of a good ol’ venting session with your girls! Most of your days are devoted to your family, but it’s always a good idea to get together with your friends once in a while. If it’s feasible, set regular times to meet maybe once a month so you can all look forward to seeing each other. If you used to go on late nights out together before, it doesn’t even matter that you can’t do that now! All you really need is someone’s house, a couple bottles of wine, ample time, and friendship.
Make sure you don’t just talk about your kids, please. Take note that this is your time as women to talk about your own selves. Go ahead and talk about your husbands, if you must, but you can also brush up on the latest gossip and news. You could even try working out together by registering for group classes—and actually showing up, okay?
It may seem a bit shallow to some, but a good way to feel like you have life after kids is to find a clothing style that suits you and your new lifestyle. You may not be the “Yoga Pants Mom” or even a “Daster Mom” but it’s easy to get stuck wearing athleisure just because it’s comfy. Of course, it also helps to dress up once in a while, so put on some makeup and step out in style. This is a great way for you to feel good about yourself and you might even find new interests along the way.
If you find yourself feeling a bit dragged down by your baby weight or haunted by the Ghost of Waistline Past, it’s time that you do something about it. Find a diet that suits you, consult your doctor or nutritionist, and enroll in a fitness class! It helps to have a trainer at first because if someone as sexy as Isabelle Daza still relies on her trainer to kickstart her body reboot, then why can’t you? If you’re on a budget, you can always download fitness apps that set up challenges and routines for daily workouts to aid you.
It doesn’t even matter whether you do Zumba, go swimming, or try calisthenics. The whole point here is to move your body, sweat the stress out, stock up on endorphins, and be consistent. If you work out at home and your kids are too clingy, then involve them in your exercise routines. YouTube has some mom and baby workouts that can possibly make this more fun for the both of you. Also, consider working out with your husband, as this can also be a form of “Us Time” for you both. You can do it!
This tip might be a bit controversial, but when we talk about quiet time for busy moms at home, it seems close to impossible. Taking a bathroom break doesn’t feel much like a break anymore with a baby sitting on your lap while you do your business, right?
So here’s an idea: ask your husband to take the kids for say, half an hour, and take a nice warm bath. Lock the door, light some candles, and play your favorite music. It’s okay to get lost within yourself for a little bit because trust me, you’ll come out feeling both fresh and mentally refreshed. You can even take a quick nap to catch up on some much-needed sleep. Afterwards, put on whatever lotion makes you feel luscious and give your husband a kiss to thank him for the help!
The important thing is to feel a bit like the Old You by celebrating the New You. They can co-exist beautifully in your mommy universe, which will make this the most wonderful chapter in your life. It’s ok to take breaks and focus on yourself, even if it means taking some time away from your kids. Your happiness matters too, so go ahead and make time for meaningful experiences that spark joy for you.