Some call it the 90-day haze—those first three months of broken sleep, frantic googling, and trying to figure out why your clothes always smell like spit up. As your newborn transitions into an infant and you begin to emerge from the haze, you’ll start getting back into your rhythms. Sure, life won’t be exactly like it was before (after all, you have a kid now!), but a new normal will evolve. You’ll go on date nights again. You’ll go to the gym again. You’ll wear skinny jeans again. You can do this, mama. Those first few months with a baby are rough, but they don’t last forever. Here’s your go-to guide for feeling like yourself again.
reconnecting with your squad
Your personal relationships may be your last priority, but they’re still important. Here’s how to make sure they don’t suffer.
Amid the blur of blowouts, breastfeeding, and keeping a human alive 24/7, it’s possible some relationships were moved to the back burner during those newborn days. It’s normal! But now you’re ready to start rekindling those, so make it a priority.
Let’s start with your partner. Maybe you’ve had less quality time together since baby was born. Once a week—say, every Tuesday—schedule an at-home date night after baby goes to sleep to spend intentional time together (i.e., no Netflix). Make cookies. Play Scrabble. Swap back rubs. Talk about something other than your beautiful bundle of joy. It’s an investment that will pay off long term.
How about your best friend who doesn’t have a kid yet? She might feel left behind that you’ve entered a new life stage, and it might be harder to relate to each other. Shoot her a text and ask how she’s doing—since, understandably, things have probably been all about you (and your baby) for the past few weeks. Enlist your hubby so that you can spend one-on-one time with her doing something adult-ish, like mani/pedis or happy hour.
And your mother-in-law. The one and only. Whether she’s the super-helpful type or the super-imposing type, it’s healthy to set expectations (and boundaries, if necessary) for what her relationship with you and the baby will look like. Is she willing to babysit? Do you want her to babysit? How often is she allowed to visit? How long can she stay when she’s in town? Does she expect to receive daily pictures of her favorite grandchild? Make sure you’re on the same page as your partner about in-law dynamics regarding your little one. Be united, and be firm.
date night + baby
Here’s a little secret: the younger your baby is, the easier it is to take her out on the town (trust us!). Bring her along as your third wheel to these baby-friendly date night spots.
MadTree Brewing Company
Local brews, wood-fired pizza, and plenty of background noise to drown out any fussing. 3301 Madison Rd., Oakley, madtreebrewing.com
Affordable grub and wide-open outdoor spaces to walk with baby if she gets antsy. 3313 Riverside Dr., Columbia-Tusculum, elisbarbeque.com
A bounty of beers, and odds are you won’t be the only one there with a little one. 1910 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine, rhinegeist.com
Ferrari’s Little Italy and Bakery
Italian food that feels fancy, but an atmosphere that’s totally family-friendly. 7677 Goff Terrace, Madeira, ferrarilittleitaly.com
Mom Hack: Fussy baby in the car? Turn your radio to a static station for soothing white noise.