Right about now you’re probably seeing a lot of gift guides for Mother’s Day.
You might even be wondering what to get a new mom for Mother’s Day.
While Mother’s Day is a great holiday that helps us celebrate all the wonderful things moms do, the real spirit of it often gets lost (like many other holidays) in commercialism.
But I’m not trying to knock that aspect of the holiday.
I’m sure the mom in your life really does want something nice that she wouldn’t think to buy for herself.
But I feel that there is a lot more to what a new mom really needs and wants for Mother’s day, and it just doesn’t come in a box.
New moms need someone to listen
I have been very lucky to have two sisters before me who have their own children. I also have a close friend who was pregnant at the same time as me and delivered her baby on the same day as I did.
I can ask them for advice on the best way to start solids, how to get my baby to sleep, or what baby carrier to use.
But I can also talk to them about what it’s like to have postpartum depression or postpartum anxiety.
I can discuss how much I take it personally when family offers well-meaning suggestions on how to raise my baby.
I can talk to them about how much I miss my child when I’m at work, and about how much I want to quit my job to stay home with him.
Or about how many times I’ve worried myself sick over something that hasn’t even happened and probably never will. (You know, like a tree blowing over and killing me, my husband, or my son while sleeping during a thunderstorm).
If you’re thinking that this stuff sounds so dramatic, you might be right.
But I can guarantee that new mom you know is dealing with one or all of these things. She may even be dealing with or feeling something more serious.
Having someone to talk to and who will listen wholeheartedly is such a special gift and it’s something you can give genuinely.
Just call up the new mom in your life and offer to have a girl date.
Or if the new mom in your life is your wife, just sit down with her and let her talk your ear off about all her worries. She needs that.
New moms need support
Support is something totally different than a listening ear.
Supporting a new mom means taking the baby for a while so she can have alone time.
It means offering to host her family for dinner so she doesn’t have to worry about cooking or cleaning.
It means offering to tag along to a vet appointment so she can focus on getting the dog through the appointment without also having to worry about a crying baby.
Supporting a new mom means taking the baby for a walk so the house is quiet enough that she can take a nap or get some other task done that requires her full attention.
I have had so much support from family and friends since my son arrived, and it has truly made my life so much easier.
I can’t fathom what my mental state would be today if I had not had the support system that I have.
So if you know a new mom, offer her some support. & do it genuinely.
She might refuse you, thinking you’re just being polite.
But deep down she probably really would love to go on a date with her husband.
She might love to catch a nap in the early morning after a sleepless night with the baby.
So offer again. It would very likely make her day.
New moms need praise
New moms are working so hard.
They are constantly stressed and worried about the health of their baby.
They wonder if the baby is eating enough, sleeping enough, playing enough, etc.
Some moms worry if their baby is getting too much screen time or not enough sunshine.
They worry about their baby’s future, and what type of person their child will grow up to be.
& at the root of all these worries is the worry that they are not a good mom.
But let’s be real. A mom who is worrying about all of these things is a good mom.
A mom who is present and active in her baby’s life is a good mom.
A mom who advocates for her baby’s best interest, even if that means not being with her, is a good mom.
So tell the new mom in your life that she’s doing a good job.
Even if you don’t agree with the way she feeds her baby or the way she puts her baby to sleep.
Even if you don’t agree with her style of parenting.
Give her praise, because she’s doing the best that she can.
& anything you say to the contrary, however well-meaning will just make her feel like she’s not a good mom.
You can help a struggling new mom
You don’t need money to get the new mom in your life the perfect Mother’s day gift.
What gift will you give to the new mom in your life?
Are you a new mom yourself? What is one thing you feel like you need from someone else that money can’t buy?