Being pregnant and having a child is such a blessing. I am very thankful for the amount of help and support I had during and after my pregnancy. But I will say one thing…… the 4th trimester is very hard. I was still recovering, having hardly any sleep, having a newborn and toddler to take care of. It can take a toll on anyone, just like it did on me.
However, for this pregnancy and postpartum I was more educated on certain things. One of those things is how wonderful and healthy it is to get outside during this time. According to the University of Pennsylvania, one in nine mothers experience postpartum depression. I was one of those mothers. I experienced postpartum depression after both of my pregnancies, but more so after my first pregnancy.
Every day, even if only for 5 minutes, I would try to step outside to soak up the sunshine or take a walk. I wanted/needed to get outside to take a deep breath of fresh air. It was relaxing for both me and my mind. Getting outside and getting out in nature can be so rewarding for both me and the kids.
Eugenia South, an assistant professor for Perelman School of Medicine, stated, “Nature can be leveraged as a health-equity tool, both in terms of making sure everyone has access to clean, safe green space but also encouraging people to spend time outside as a way to buffer life stress,” she says. “Nature isn’t a cure-all, but it can be a potential buffer, a way to prevent life stress from getting under your skin and leading to poor health over time.”
But getting outside into nature with my toddler and my newborn was very important to me. I know my toddler loves being outdoors, but my newborn can benefit from it too! The fresh air, sunlight, sounds, and sights are all good for his developmental skills.
“Babies thrive out-of-doors. They sleep better, eat better, look better, play better, and learn better. – Magda Gerber
All-in-all, getting outdoors and into nature can help a postpartum momma and children. Never hesitate to ask for help and take moments for yourself (if possible) where you can clear your mind and breathe.