When my third child was born, a friend gave me a gift certificate for a pedicure. She happened to be a nail tech and would be doing the pedicure, but, wow—what a great idea for helping a new mom! I certainly wish someone would have thought of that with my other two babies! Doing my toes and nails is one of the many little ways of taking care of me that gets put away during the baby stage. When a friend has a baby, the typical way we take care of them is through meals. I think this is pretty standard across the board for most of us as moms. Over the years, I have seen a few exceptions to the norm and would love to see them more. To encourage this idea, I’ve come up with a list (including a few non-meal ideas) of ways to help a new mom in your life.
This one is a no brainer and probably the most common way we help a new mom. I know I was so very appreciative for this during all of my post partum weeks. Many groups now use Meal Train as a way to organize meals online. I like the idea of Super Suppers as well. Stop in and grab prepackaged meals to freeze or cook that same night. They do not claim to cater to food allergies but can modify some meals to certain food restrictions. (It is best to call ahead.) Check out OrderUp, and Shipt for meal and grocer delivery. Another alternative to a meal is a snack basket. Many a new mom that I know these days have little ones at home already. I have taken baskets full of snacks, fruit, candy, bottled drinks, and even included a new movie to help the little ones occupy themselves.
I personally have never been on the receiving end of this, but I’ve often said that if I hit the jackpot I’ll hiring weekly cleaning service for myself and all of my friends! This is the one thing that I actually hate doing, and what better way to help a new mom than to make sure her house is taken care of for her? I know I am happier when my house is clean, and I can relax much more easily. Several friends could pitch in and have a new mom’s house deep cleaned one good time. This is actually a great idea to have done while she is in the hospital if you can arrange it on short notice. What a great gift—to come home to a clean house!
I’d suggest throwing in free babysitting too! If you have a friend who feels better with her toes and nails done, then this is a great way to pamper her a bit.
Visiting and More
I had several friends offer to come, sit, and rock our new baby so I could sleep. I strongly suggest insisting on this, as it was hard for me to accept this (much less ask for it) even though several had sincerely offered. Even just a two hour uninterrupted nap would have meant the world to me! While you’re there? Take a picture of the new mom and her babe. It’s likely that in all the hubbub everyone EXCEPT her has gotten a picture with her wee one.
With my first baby, I couldn’t wait to get out of the house and show her off . . . even if it was just at the grocery store! With baby #3 it was a chore just to get my older two to school. Any help with carpooling to and from school, games, parties, etc. made me very appreciateive.
For so many, this is such an overwhelming time. Sometimes a simple reminder to sit, breathe, and just be is all a new mom needs. We all know this time goes by far too quickly. And, for the most part, we are aware of how fortunate we are to have our sweet babies, but we also know that there are times we want to scream and cry—and no encouragment will help! I know that even with all the wonderful offers for help, it was very hard for me to actually take friends up on that help. It’s most important to know your friend and what she needs. All of these suggestions won’t be helpful or appreciated by everyone, so I would reiterate the suggestion of insisting JUST DOING the things that are needed!