Here we are at six months. I’ve never experienced so many different things in a six month span, and adding COVID to it was just an enhancement of what we know as “all the things”. I’m a sucker for goal setting and I realize that some of it is personality trait, but regardless of who you are goals can be really positive and motivating concepts. They don’t have to be stringent, they can be far more general, but they are good markers for progress especially as I am learning you adapt to a new body, a new lifestyle, a new world entirely.
I am no expert on postpartum or postpartum goal setting, but I am hoping the next few paragraphs and bullet points will help you establish a base of good mental health and motivating yet practical goals in this season.
So here are a few goals I set for myself:
- While I am breastfeeding, eat as much as I felt hungry for without calorie counting.
- Lose 70% of the weight I had gained in the first 6 months
- Get to double digits in mileage by six months
- Go to counseling for the first 12 weeks (at least)
- Find other moms who are newly out of the season that I could be open and honest with
Did I hit all of these exactly? No. Did I give myself extra grace? In some moments yes, in some moments no. As a c-section it was tough having a baby the exact week everything locked down – no one to come over, bring meals, hold your baby (with the exception of my parents). So you have to pull yourself up by your bootstraps and get it done. Maybe that helps build stamina, and in some of those moments it helps to be an enneagram 8 whom has the most energy of all other personality types. But it’s neither here nor there it’s all hard, but God equipped mothers for their specific situations and timing – YOU CAN DO IT.
The pandemic absolutely helped me slow down as it has for most, and it helped me not push where I might have been tempted too, so with all the challenges it also has allowed for slower moments and not missing out on these major milestones of the first year. So YOU CAN DO IT and YOU CAN STOP.
So here are a few things I have learned, they might seem standard or cliche, but as a woman who can read advice and God-breathed truth and breeze right by it the more you say it, the more you hear it, the more you start believing it. I hope this is for someone.
- There is NO set timeline for how your postpartum journey should be. Have you suffered from PPD or breastfeeding vs not breastfeeding, c-section vs natural delivery it all makes a difference in our recovery, on top of the fact we are all vastly different people to begin with.
- You can set lofty goals but listen to your body! If its causing pain (actual pain – being uncomfortable and sore is different), then stop and rest, but don’t be afraid to gently push yourself when things are feeling good.
- Put your mental health first. For me, eating and weight loss were something I made sure to talk through with
- Stop googling random things, I read so many “all-natural mommy blogs” during pregnancy and I realized a lot of them were so siphoned into one particular way it was stressful and not realistic. I am sure the intentions were fine, but when I really wanted information I went to trusted medical sources such as the American Academy of Pediatrics or the WHO for postnatal care. Don’t @ me.
- Sleep reigns over workouts and what foods you eat. Not saying those aren’t important, but I have a sleep tracker on my arm and even at 6+ months PP I am still not quite getting enough restful sleep. Even if you get up right before your first meeting – get the extra sleep at least in this season.
I hope this is helpful for someone! You are doing great mom, keep going.