Maybe you’re a new mom who is exhausted and needs advice on self-care, or maybe you’re a pro who has been down this path but has forgotten how important putting YOU first is when parenting. Celebrity Baby Trends reached out to our friend, Andrea Boyd Cohen, advanced certified Jivamukti yoga teacher, director of Satsang Yoga Charleston, editor, radio show writer/producer, birth doula and (most important) MOM. We asked her to share some tips for new moms with our CBT fans. We love that they seem reasonable and doable, and all will enhance the quality of the oh-so-important family matriarch.
Do what you can and what feels right to YOU:
- Move your body – Yoga is a great way to return to exercise. Choose classes that work with your fitness level and won’t challenge you with more than you’re ready for. Many practices are about stretching muscles in the shoulders and back while taking calming breaths. You can also practice yoga at home by downloading videos so baby can stay nearby.
- Nourishment – Eating plant-based veggie foods like avocados, greens, fruits, legumes, rice, miso, soups, nuts, oils like coconut and olive, and nut milk like cashew and almond will help you feel good, inside and out. Keep up the radiant glow from pregnancy and have better digestion while taking care of the planet, and facilitating nutritious eating habits for your child.
- Cherish the moment and be present – Though the days may seem long, your child will grow quickly, so cherish those moments. Sit with, hold and gaze at your baby – breathe them in. The housekeeping (and Instagram) can wait. This goes for dads too!
- Get fresh air – Walk with your baby on your chest; take in the trees, sunshine, and surroundings.
- Reduce phone/T.V./magazine time – Read a book, meditate, and cook. These activities will help you feel more connected to the present moment and give you a peaceful atmosphere to ease into parenthood. This book will come in handy – “The Parents Tao Te Ching.”
- Sleep when your baby sleeps – You need a lot of energy to be a strong mama, and sleeping or resting when your baby is asleep is crucial. Enjoy daytime naps and catch those zzzz’s as often as you can.
- Make a little “me time” each day – Andrea says: “I tell my husband, ‘I need one hour a day for myself.'” This can be practicing yoga, a hot Epsom salt bath with candles, a trip to TJ Maxx, a phone call with a girlfriend while lying in the grass – whatever relaxes and nourishes you.
- Communicate with your partner and be loving to each other – Do your best not to keep score as who is doing more. You’re the mama, so for the first couple of years, especially if breastfeeding, it will likely be you.
- Ask for/accept help – Find two or three people you trust to stay with your baby at your home for an hour or two once or twice a week. Enlist the help of your parents if they’re around or a close friend who has childcare experience. Especially postpartum, have people bring you meals. Remember, “It takes a village.”
Like many moms, Andrea is a big believer in breastfeeding. Andrea says, “The benefits for both you and baby are endless. You and they get the bonding/oxytocin, and they get the ultimate living substance of your milk, and an amazing immune system, to name just a few.” Andrea and our Celebrity Baby Trends team know that not all of us have the option to breastfeed so if you aren’t flowing full of breastmilk or it just didn’t work out for mom and baby we suggest a little daily skin-to-skin time in the early stages. “When my milk production halted I continued to have skin-to-skin time in a quiet room with my baby. I found it to be soothing for her and I continued to feel a great connection with her.” – Celebrity Baby Trends CEO, Rachel Urso
In addition to her certification as a yoga teacher and mentoring role, Andrea edited and produced the books “An Offering of Leaves,” “Sweeping the Dust,” and “Fell In Her Hands” from Lantern Books. She has a music album titled “One With Thee” and produced 7 albums called “The Spoken Word Series” all available at CDBaby.com. She also writes, hosts and produces a radio show called “The Depth of Birth.” Andrea and her husband Jeffrey are parents to a beautiful 2-and-a-half-year-old boy.
A special thanks to Andrea for taking time out of her busy schedule to give us some more new parenting insight.