Updated: Dec 16, 2021
I never really thought that I would witness a pandemic in my lifetime! I mean, who would want it right? Even if you did, please don’t wish for any more pandemics, I think this one is more than enough for generations to come.
On that note, whether pandemic or not, babies were born throughout the world every single day. No one would have imagined that birthing a baby in the pandemic could be so challenging and literally making you breathless with all the masks!
And the hospital facilities did not entertain staying in the hospital for more than a day or two after the child’s birth. The mother and the baby were sent home as soon as possible.
During this time, the mother is left in a more vulnerable state because she cannot go in person to visit a doctor anytime she wished for. Suddenly, everything was happening online and you had to update yourself with the technology as well along with taking care of the baby.
And If you do not have any help at hand or if the postpartum care was not planned ahead, then you are in for a ride, where you just don't know what to do and it might stress you out!
But, not to worry mommies, I have noted some of the areas where a little planning is required and if planned ahead you can have a better ride of the postpartum care.
Diet and Nutrition
Here I am telling you what you can do at your home after you are back from the hospital, assuming that until you were in the hospital, the facilities there took care of your needs.
What you may need to stock up?
Ready to eat homemade snacks.
Dry fruits (roasted)
Stock up your pantry with groceries that you may need.
Fresh seasonal fruits that are available easily in your geographical area
Homemade sweets like granola bars, peanut butter, peanut jaggery ladoo, whatever is your cultural sweet.
Local seasonal Vegetables
A2 milk cow ghee (clarified butter), butter, Vegan milk if you are a vegan.
Ingredients of herbal teas
Plan for support
If asking your friend or relative to stay with you is too much to ask for, ask them to send you food whenever possible. This is very important especially if you are a single parent.
Do not depend on one person, have a backup plan if one person does not show up then you can approach another. Because your food is very important during this time.
Rely on simple dishes that take less time and have fewer ingredients like khichadi, soups, porridges, one-pot dishes.
Ask your partner to plan on procuring the groceries that can last up to 2 - 3 weeks. For example, dry fruits' life span is longer than 2 weeks, dried fruits, berries, peanut butter, and so on.
Guide your partner in making simple dishes with whatever is available in your kitchen pantry. Do not stress yourself on making a particular dish. The key is to make it fresh and have it warm.
If you are unable to procure fresh fruits, then you can manage with whatever is easily available near your home. Remember, during the pandemic, it is not safe to wander around to procure things, you can buy what is easily available.
Fitness and pandemic
Fitness! This has been so difficult to maintain not only for new mothers but for everyone working from home. You need to have discipline when you are at home all the time and the kitchen looks so inviting with all the snacks stocked up.
Remember these key points to start your fitness journey -
You can be active and start walking around your house unless your doctor has advised you not to.
Staying active is important but you should not strain yourself to do any activity.
Dedicate yourself to walking every day for some time inside your house. It is okay if there is a lockdown and you cannot go outside, lockdown restriction is for everyone and not for new mothers alone.
You can perform the stretching exercises mentioned in our course.
You will not find time, you have to MAKE time for yourself.
Do not be too hard on yourself if you miss a day or two. Start again, even if it is 2 - 3 days a week, that is okay for a beginner, slowly set up a routine for yourself.
Consciously avoid packaged or processed foods. Eat simple home-cooked meals.
It is best to not order junk, it is difficult to control to not eat the junk when the packet is right in front of you.
Stay hydrated, try to include a variety of foods that is available during the time.
Keep healthy snacks handy to satisfy your hunger pangs.
How to remain sane inside the home?
If you keep telling yourself that due to pandemics I am not able to go outside, if I went outside I would have been fine and all that, then it is difficult to cope up. The thing is covid19 became a pandemic because people had problems staying inside their own homes!
All we had to do was to stay indoors to not spread the virus. It was a simple instruction that most of them could not follow. Our brain is such that when we think that someone else is setting up rules for us, it shows resistance, but when you think that it is your responsibility to remain indoors then your brain is happy to follow. So, you can tell yourself that it is your responsibility to stay indoors until it is safe to go out, then you may not feel that bad about it.
Whether pandemic or not, the first 40 days of the postpartum period is a crucial time for new mothers. Not that she is sick, it is just that a new mother needs that care and it takes time for her body to heal and recover.
Utilize this time to listen to your favorite music that you wanted to listen from a long time and could not do so because of the busy life you had before your baby, take advantage of this situation and relax in a recliner, you can put your baby on your chest while you rest.
Take help and set up your home with things that will make you happy when you look around.
It could be as simple as some nice wall stickers,
buy some nice coffee/tea mugs (don't indulge too much in caffeine when you are breastfeeding),
buy some good lights to make the evening bright and colorful,
Good nursing wear
Books that you wanted to read(stick to simple stories)
Good speakers to play some nice soothing meditative music, or music that makes you feel good.
A nice pair of slippers to walk around.
A cozy blanket to make you feel good while you rest.
Talk to your loved ones through phone or video call whenever you feel like it.
A nice diary to pen down your thoughts.
You will be surprised to know that these simple things can actually make you feel better and keep you sane during a pandemic. It has been hard on every family across the globe, but being a new mother is an added responsibility that needs a lot of care and love.
Simple planning can make it slightly easier for you to ride better through the days, each day is not the same, and with an infant around, it is a journey of never-ending challenges and tasks. Plan ahead, communicate with your partner, take it slow, one task at a time, and most importantly do not be hard on yourself.
You need to take care of yourself first to take care of your baby. Self-care is the best help you can give yourself. Be kind to yourself and others. Take care!