Pregnant with my 5th child, I’ve been quite a bit at the receiving end of needing a little help when a new baby is welcomed into the world. I know it’s so difficult these days for people to ask for help and sometimes women just don’t know what to offer for assistance. In my experience, people are more likely to accept help when a specific task is offered. The generic “call me if you need anything” is not the best approach for a mom with a newborn.
Whether a first time mom, or a mother welcoming her 5th child into the home, here are my top 10 ways to help any mom with a newborn.
1. Take a Meal:
Taking dinner to a family with a new baby is such a great relief. I often make breakfast burritos for the freezer too. Having a hot breakfast can be such a treat when you’ve been up most of the night and you have a family (or even just yourself) to feed all day.
2. Start a Care Calendar:
This is not only great for new moms, but anyone who is sick or has something traumatic going on in their family. Our M.O.M.S. group at church is great about keeping these going for women/families in need. You can add childcare, meals or any other assistance needed for people to sign up on appropriate days.
3. Offer Childcare:
This is obviously great for mommies with other children at home. You can take their kids out for the day, include them in your family festivities or just take them to the park for a couple hours to give mom a rest.
4. Do a load of laundry or buy a week of laundry service:
I personally love Laundry Ladies, but if you don’t have anything like this in your area (hopefully you will soon), head over and do a load of laundry or pick up a couple loads to take home and bring back the next day clean and folded.
5. Clean something:
I know many women have a REALLY difficult time letting someone come in and help them clean up, but many women also like the clean house and can’t seem to find the time to manage to get certain tasks done. Mop a floor, clean a bathroom or vacuum. Those are all tasks difficult to get to between feedings.
6. Buy a one time Maid Service:
Obviously finances don’t always allow for such services, but often times it’s the same price as making a week’s worth of meals. For a mom who already has many meals in the freezer, this is a great way to help. This is also a gift great to give anytime in the first year of a new babies life, while a new mommy is adjusting to motherhood or trying to learn to juggle a new number of children. This gift actually works great if you give them the certificate and they just call and make the appointment when they feel they most need a good cleaning.
7. Offer to let them shower and/or nap:
This seems funny at first (well, not to us moms who have had babies and recently), but when on a visit to see the new baby, offer to hold the new bundle while mommy showers. This is often a very difficult task that quickly becomes a luxury and not a necessity especially to a new mom or a mom of another little one, who hasn’t quite figured out how to schedule in time to take care of herself. Napping can also be tricky, but these mamas need sleep and letting them go take a nap on your visit could be exactly what is needed most.
8. Buy a Gift Card and gather some menus:
Find local restaurants who deliver and gather some menus for the family to use. Try to find a couple healthy places too, as new moms are often already thinking about losing all their “baby weight”. Feeding a husband and/or family can be so overwhelming and this is such a great resource for the day the freezer is empty, no one is scheduled to bring dinner and exhaustion has set in. Give them a gift card to one of those local places they can use at their convenience.
9. Grocery Shop:
On your way to visit a new baby? Be sure to call or text and see if the mom needs any basics. If you are at the store or Costco and you know you will be visiting during the week, find out if the mom needs anything for the household. This is especially nice to do if you are headed to a specialty store like Sprouts or Trader’s Joes. Often times moms are taking what they can get and picking up something for them at a store they usually shop at can be a special treat. Also, just taking over a bag of staples, or a special something you know the couple likes is always a nice gesture.
10. Remind her to accept all help:
Unfortunately we live in a culture today, where many moms think they are supposed to be “handling” everything themselves. They set their stake as a wife and a mom by what their daily accomplishments are. Be sure to remind moms of new babies 2 important facts:
- People aren’t going to offer help for very long after a new baby arrives
- Helping each other out is what the body of Christ is all about!!
In what way has someone has helped you with a newborn? Did I miss a really good way to help?
Please comment below.
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