Shh…Sleep Parent Sleep…
When was the last time you rested? No, no, I’m not talking about laying your head down for a quick nap between feeds. I’m speaking about laying your heavy head down and melting between the sheets. I’m talking about closing your eyes and escaping into a world of dreams and imagination. I’m saying knowing the peace of having your baby in the arms of your trusted postpartum doula. Sleep, beautiful-wanted-needed sleep!
The lack of sleep, or sleep deprivation, is extremely hazardous to one’s mental health. During the postpartum period, these occurrences are magnified. So how can a new parent rest, replenish, and restart their sleep? First off, remember that healthy sleep patterns for infants and children start with their parents as their best examples. So let’s begin!
You may have heard “sleep when baby sleeps.”, and while that sounds divine, it’s not always doable. Because baby’s take an average of 15-20 hours of sleep a day, there’s ample time to rest. Pick a time of the day for baby’s nap that you feel the most energized, and utilize that time to knock out your dailies and to-do lists. Use the time of day when you are physically, mentally, or emotionally exhausted to rest you body. Coincide these times with baby’s longer naps, and it’s a win-win.
When you’ve decided on the time for your refreshing, you want to make sure it restores you. Set the scene. Does a nap on the couch do the trick, or do you need the comforts of your bed? Can you sleep soundly with light, or do you need to darken the mood? Does the sounds of life around you soothe, or keep you distracted? Creating your space just the way you like will naturally enforce replenishment.
You’ve set the time, you’ve set the mood, now it’s time for business. Once you’ve made the mood, allow your mind to wander. Let go of the stresses and struggles of your day. Turn your phone to ‘Do Not Disturb’ for 30 mins. Enlist your doula to care for your baby. Set an alarm if you so please. Once you’ve awaken, continue to tackle your day a new refreshed YOU!