Postpartum Self-Care Routine that can help in recovery (mental and physical). Also included is a printable with the items and when you can do it.
I am 8-weeks postpartum after delivering our second born. Before the delivery, I was anxious about postpartum recovery – thinking about food, healing, nursing, and more. Now that we are close to the 2-month mark, I am genuinely grateful that the time has passed without many hiccups. Raising the child is not an easy feat and has just started but I want to quickly document and share my recovery (mental and physical) self-care routine with you. I hope it helps.
Since with our firstborn, I had severe shoulder pain I was a little worried this time and prioritized self-care for managing anxiety, recovery, and body aches.
Since this is our second-born, our challenges and situation are perhaps different, but I think it might still help a few. But, to each, her own in this regard, remember that rest is paramount, and rest shall follow! And, please note that you don’t have to do them all, if it is overwhelming – please listen to your OBGYN and of course your own body!
Before we dive in, a disclaimer: I am a certified health coach and help women manage their health with busy routines and prevent burnout. However, I am not a certified postpartum recovery coach. What I list below is my experience and what worked for me.
Free Printable – Postpartum Routine
Meditation can be unwinding and have a healing effect, especially postpartum. However, meditating in pain or while breastfeeding can be a challenge. Therefore, instead of starting it postpartum, it is more straightforward to form it as a habit during pregnancy. Also, when nursing or feeding the baby, meditating in one or two sessions is an easy practice.
2. Drinking Water
If you are nursing the child, you might get dehydrated. Otherwise too, keeping yourself hydrated is very important to alleviate pain and heal better. So, I followed a simple thumb rule of a glass per feed – it keeps it easy to remember to be hydrated.
If I had to pick, one thing that helped me the most to heal was massaging. Nursing the child, rocking, sleeping in a not-so-perfect posture can aggravate any pains. Therefore, it is excellent if you have someone who could massage you. Else, self-massaging your arms, feet, hands, and shoulders with oil can go a long way in relieving pain and staying calm.
4. Talking to a friend or sibling
Someone not in the same household can give you a fresh take on things and help you unplug from what may sometimes feel like an endless cycle of feeding and changing diapers. Therefore, talking to a friend or sibling can be of help.
5. Going out for a walk
When the ob-gyn permits you, you can start exercising but walking is a gentle activity. Going out for even a short walk, if possible, can help one attain mini-cycles of calm and return refreshed. However, please don’t stretch yourself – your recovery is essential; therefore, listen to your body.
6.Taking a nap
This is needless to say – ‘sleep as much as possible‘ is the advice you get from everyone. However, it may not always be possible, especially if you have an older child. Therefore, I try to keep a target of one nap during the day – so that I am not anxious about not getting enough sleep.
The last two are occasional ones, and I didn’t do them religiously. The first is gratitude journaling (which I usually do but didn’t stick to postpartum). Gratitude journaling is an excellent way to reduce anxiety. The second one is watching a comedy show to reduce the stress you might have from sleep deprivation!
Which one is your go-to item on the list above? If you have more suggestions, please let me know.
I wish you the best of health and a speedy recovery!