Many years ago, one of my best friends had a baby and it was a life-altering moment, not just for her but for me as well. At the time, we had been friends for approximately 15 years and had witnessed the milestones in each other’s lives. Marriage, divorce, acceptance and graduation from business and med schools, caring for aging parents and even their burials – we had been through it all. However, now, things were different. She had given birth to a beautiful baby girl and had joined a club called “Mothers.” I would join that club much, much later through the gift of adoption but I remember her trials well: the baby throwing her pacifier out of the crib a zillion times. Her leaking breasts. Her insecurities about whether she was doing the right thing as a mother.
During a shopping trip in an upscale store, I came across a perfume display and decided to buy my friend a nice perfume set along with a card that said, “This is the mommy gift”, just for you. She immediately thanked me upon receiving the gift and stated that the baby receives all the attention, but people forget about the mother. I never forgot those words.
In May of this year, the American College of Obstetrician Gynecologists changed the guidelines for postpartum care and the New York Times wrote a very cool article called A Survival Guide for the Fourth Trimester which I recommend all pregnant women read.
The fourth trimester should focus on healing, both physically, emotionally and while healing, please don’t forget to give yourself some love.
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