Do you remember what it was like to be a first time mom, or how about a 2nd time mom, 3rd time, 4th? Those first few days at home are no doubt a blur. You want to spend all day snuggling and nursing your little one. You curl up on the couch under a nice warm blanket and spend hours staring into the eyes of your innocent little child and all the possibilities of what is to come drift through your thoughts. Counting every breath; smile with every coo. Hard to imagine that this tiny human once shared your body. As they lay; ear to your chest; you watch in wonder as your baby is soothed just by the sound of your heart.
Postpartum is a time for bonding, healing, rest and reflection. All too often is this time cut short with everyday life. Maybe your spouse can’t take time off work. Maybe you ran out of clean clothes. Maybe your toddler is a daredevil and tries to climb your bookshelf. Maybe your school age children need you to pack lunches for them and see them off to the bus. Maybe you have 4 mouths to feed; 3 times a day…
You can never underestimate the gift you are giving to a new mom when you bring her a meal. Or the gratitude she feels to have her toddler kept entertained for a few hours while she gets a nice, long, hot, …quiet… shower. New moms want to bond with their babies and you are giving them the time to do that. By bringing her a meal, you just saved her at least an hour of time she could have spent enjoying the fleeting newborn moments.
Last night – I spent a few hours making 4 batches of Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili (my favorite). Once finished, I divided it up into 4 parts. I kept 2 (one to eat today and one to freeze for a later day). The other two portions were packaged up for delivery to 2 ‘new’ moms.
I took my boys over to drop off the first meal and we spent a few hours playing with her toddler. He is an energetic one but I am hoping that having my two there helped make nap time a bit easier out of sheer exhaustion. I was happy to see that she had a fridge FULL of meals that friends and family had brought over. Around nap time we headed out to visit the next mama… and with my two asleep in the car, and her toddler who had just fallen asleep, I just dropped off the chili. I spent just a few minutes talking because I knew that with a sleeping toddler; this was prime snuggle or nap time for mama so I was quick to leave. Her birth story can wait – new mamas need their rest.
If you know someone who just had a baby within the last month or so… double, triple or even quadruple your favorite recipe and give them the gift of time.