Valentine’s Day is around the corner, and if you are looking for a gift for a new mom, you may not find what you need in stores. While every lady can appreciate a beautiful bouquet of flowers, or a box of her favorite chocolates, new moms may not have the luxury of having time or energy to stop and smell the roses or properly indulge in that candy. So if you want to get her something she could really use and enjoy, here are 10 things new moms want for Valentine’s Day that money can’t buy.
New moms can get overwhelmed with the amount of work and effort newborns require. Not that they don’t absolutely adore their little bundles of joy, it’s just that the combination of a lack of sleep with their nonstop responsibilities can get really exhausting. When you are dead tired, spilling breast milk or formula on yourself, and worried about the baby waking any minute, it’s hard to take pleasure in stuffed teddy bears and candy.
That’s why, when it comes to gifting a new mom, getting her something she really needs could make all the difference, and it may not require any money. Here are some pretty neat and thoughtful things you can do for the new mom in your life for Valentine’s Day that will definitely show her how much you love her.
1. Some Backup
It seems that everyone in the world has an opinion on how to parent, and when you're a new mom, it can get really annoying. So instead of letting her take the brunt of criticism — whether it be from family, friends, or even strangers — come to her defense in a "please refrain from talking to my client at this time" type tone. It gets exhausting having to defend every choice she makes as a mom, so it would be awesome for someone to have her back unconditionally.
2. A Full Night's Sleep
Every new mom will tell you — the most wanted thing on their list is a full night’s sleep. You can help her out, and it won’t cost you a dime. All you need to do is have formula or pumped breast milk on hand for the baby while you and the baby sleep in a separate room for the night. (Mom may have to get up to pump, but at least the responsibility of the baby isn't on her shoulders, too.) Let your new mama have the entire bed to herself so she can get a good, relaxing full night’s sleep in peace and quiet.
3. Pooping Without Pain
While this may not be the kind of gift you can give her, you can be more sensitive about her pain. Pooping after giving birth can be the worst, especially when there are stitches involved down there, so a little compassion and sympathy will go a long way. One cool thing you can do is make her smoothies everyday using fresh fruits, veggies, and yogurts to kick start her digestion and make pooping a little easier.
4. Friend Time
After spending months growing a baby, followed by lounging in pajamas covered in spit-up, a new mom might love to have a night with her friends to feel like herself again. Just offering to stay home to take care of the baby, while she goes out for uninterrupted talk and drinks, can help her get that mojo back. On the flip side, if she'd just like to have a friend over so she doesn't feel so alone during the day, make that happen, too.
5. One-On-One Time With Her SO
If you can get a friend or grandparent to babysit (or just use the monitor like a champ), you should treat your new mom to some alone time with you (or her SO). It might be just what she needs, whether you take her out to her favorite restaurant or stay home in PJs watching a movie. Give her some love and affection, talk to her about how she’s feeling, and ask her if she needs anything. She’ll appreciate that time and attention more than any boxed gift — you just can't put a price on quality time, especially for a new mother who usually only gets asked about the baby.
6. A Clean House
With all the baby gear, laundry, and bottles spread out over the house, you can give your new mom the luxurious gift of a clean house. Get up a little early to clean the bathrooms, do the laundry, mop and vacuum the floors, or wash the baby bottles — whatever you think will be helpful for her. Clutter can be very chaotic and giving her a clean space will do wonders for her mental health.
7. A Long Shower
Even The Flash can’t take quicker showers than a new mom. The worry of the baby waking up or crying makes new moms learn the art of taking a speed shower, which involves no enjoyment whatsoever. So take over baby duty for an hour or so and let her shower in peace for as long as she wants. There’s nothing more relaxing than a long, hot shower or bath with time to sing and daydream. It’s a gift she’ll definitely appreciate.
8. A Day of No Cooking
When you are in charge of a newborn, the last thing you want to do is cook. Meal preparation requires time and effort, both of which are in low supply when you’re a new mom. So go ahead and take over kitchen duty, whether that means making her breakfast in bed or just prepping her some lunches for the week so she doesn't have to think about it.
9. A Day Free of Diaper Duties
Pamper your new mom by giving her a day free from the actual Pampers. Take over diaper duties for some time to give her a break from wiping anyone's butt except for her own.
10. A Quiet Nap
Want to give her a gift she will really adore? Give her some time off during the day to take a much needed nap. Take the baby out for a walk or to the park for about an hour or two, and let her nap in a quiet house without the worry of needing to wake up for the baby. A restful nap is priceless for a new mom — it can give her the sanity and energy she needs to get through the day and it won’t cost you a thing.
Check out Romper's new video series, Bearing The Motherload, where disagreeing parents from different sides of an issue sit down with a mediator and talk about how to support (and not judge) each other’s parenting perspectives. New episodes air Mondays on Facebook.