Want to love your child? Love yourself first, mama

The new normal is that I work when I should be sleeping because it seems like I can’t get enough done during the day.

Want to love your child? Love yourself first, mama

Have you ever had one of those weeks where life just doesn't stand still? I have.

I guess life never really does stand still but there were no lazy mornings or leisurely afternoons. No calm evenings or relaxing bedtimes to gloat about. Just a crazy, busy insanely demanding week where I was just one mom and mom life was officially kicking my butt.

Fighting a hoarse voice of my own, two trips to the urgent care with my daughters, my mother was in the ICU, work deadlines and of course the normal hectic evening routine with kids is just a tad bit of my days last week.

And during it all, in the midst of almost breaking down in tears, it occurred to me that these wild weeks are beginning to be the "new normal."

By "new normal" I am not referring to the extreme life moments. Those are hopefully rare and far and few in between. I'm talking about the day to day with two kids under 5, a husband, a career, friends, and extended family, it feels like I am constantly being pulled in every direction.

The new normal is getting up early to make breakfast, make lunches and get myself semi dressed before the little ones wake up.

The new normal is that I strive to be present as a wife and best friend, even when I’m too tired to think and sometimes

The new normal is that I work when I should be sleeping because it never seems like I can get enough done during the day.

The new normal is making plans for super fun girlfriend get-togethers, only to have to cancel because of a kid mini-crisis. (Two dreaded words: stomach bug.) That wasn't a fun day!

The new normal is moving from mother to friend to boss—from minute to minute. And not taking enough time for self.

As much as I enjoy being a mommy to my beautiful daughters, am madly in love with my husband and enjoy my career, the new normal leaves me aching for a moment of peace and serenity. Can we say "bubble baths" anyone?

That desire may not happen every day (okay, who I am I kidding, it happens a lot), I am continually learning that I must give myself little moments (or big moments) of calm every once in a while.

As mothers we push ourselves to the brink without thinking twice about it.

We are so accustomed to being everyone else's everything that we forget that we need our own love too!

The saying of love yourself first rings in my head whenever I begin to feel too overwhelmed or exhausted.

Taking a walk to grab a coffee, stopping for a quick polish change or simply taking a little longer in the shower with my favorite body scrub are the little moments that help remind me to put myself first because I am just one mom.

I may not have 48 hours in my day like I am convinced Beyonce does (she is Sasha Fierce) but 24 hours will just have to do.

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Products that solve your biggest breastfeeding challenges

Including a battle plan for clogged ducts!

When expecting a baby, there is a lot you can test-run in advance: Take that stroller around the block. Go for a spin with the car seat secured in place. Learn how to use the baby carrier with help from a doll. But breastfeeding? It's not exactly possible to practice before baby's arrival.

The absence of a trial makes it all the more important to prepare in other ways for breastfeeding success—and it can be as simple as adding a few of our lactation aiding favorites to your registry.

MilkBliss chocolate chip soft baked lactation cookies

MilkBliss lactation cookies

Studies have shown the top reason women stop breastfeeding within the first year is because they are concerned about their milk supply being enough to nourish baby. Consider MilkBliss Lactation Cookies to be your secret weapon. Not only are they wholesome and delicious, but they were formulated specifically for breastfeeding moms based on the science of galactagogues—also known as milk boosters. They also come in peanut butter and wild blueberry flavors.


Evereden multi-purpose healing balm

Evereden multipurpose healing balm

Also up there on the list of reasons women stop breastfeeding: the toll the early days can take on nipples. Made from just five ingredients, this all natural healing balm is ideal for soothing chafed nipples, making for a much more comfortable experience for mama as her body adjusts to the needs of a breastfeeding baby.


Lansinoh milk storage bags

Lansinoh milk storage bags

For a breastfeeding mama, there are few things more precious and valuable than the milk she worked so hard to pump—and it's the stuff of nightmares to imagine it spilling out in the fridge. With these double-sealed milk storage bags, you can be assured your breastmilk is safe and sound until baby needs it.


Belly Bandit bandita nursing bra

Belly Bandit bandita nursing bra

Nursing a baby is a 24/7 job, which calls for some wardrobe modifications. Because Belly Bandit specializes in making things more comfortable for the postpartum mama, they've truly thought of every detail—from the breathable fabric to the clips that can be easily opened with one hand.


boob-ease soothing therapy pillows

Boob Ease soothing therapy pillows

For nursing moms, duct can quickly become a four-letter word when you suspect it's getting clogged. By keeping these soothing breast pillows in your breastfeeding arsenal, you can immediately go on the defense against plugged milk ducts by heating the pads in the microwave or cooling them in the freezer.


Belly Bandit perfect nursing tee

Belly Bandit perfect nursing tee

A unfortunate reality of nursing is that it can really seem to limit the wardrobe options when you have to think about providing easy, discrete access. But by adding functional basics to your closet, you can feel confident and prepared for breastfeeding on the go.


Bebe au Lait premium cotton nursing cover

Bebe au Lait cotton nursing cover

Nursing in public isn't every mama's cup of tea. But babies can't always wait until you've found a private place to get down to business if that's your preference. That's where a nursing cover comes in handy. This one is made from premium cotton and features a patented neckline that allows for airflow and eye contact even while you're covered.


Lactation Lab basic breastmilk testing kit

Lactation Lab breastmilk testing kit

Curious to learn more about the liquid gold you're making, mama? The testing kit from Lactation Labs analyzes your breast milk for basic nutritional content like calories and protein, as well as vitamins, fatty acids and environmental toxins to help boost your breastfeeding confidence.


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