My new baby is making me stink.
As if the sleep deprivation isn’t bad enough, your personal hygiene habits are taking a hit as well. You have so little free time during those first few weeks that when you have a choice between bathing and sleeping, it’s no contest. You’re starting to think showering is a luxury you can’t afford. As a result, you feel grungy, look greasy and are starting to smell. We’ve been there.
Put a bouncy seat in the bathroom.
You need to shower. Every day. Okay, some days it won’t be possible, but strive for every day. Carving out time to take care of yourself is not only desirable, it’s essential. Choose a time of day when your baby is the least likely to fuss and put her in the baby seat for a few minutes. The best time will be when she’s well-rested and has just eaten. If there’s a window, she’ll enjoy staring outside at tree branches or power lines. If there’s not a window, use a toy bar.
At first, she’ll stare contentedly at the toys dangling in front of her and before you know it, she’ll be reaching for them to put in her mouth. Either way, she’ll stay there at least long enough for you to quickly wash up. And not a minute longer. If Speed-Showering was an Olympic sport, moms would win every time. Relish in the cleanliness that even a three-minute shower provides. These days, weeks and months will pass quicker than you can imagine, so take comfort in the knowledge that soon enough you’ll be showering like a regular person instead of racing to finish before those little coos turn into full-fledged wails.
If the timing works for you, you can maintain the same shower schedule as your baby grows. When she’s a toddler, she’ll hang out beside the shower if you give her markers and a colouring book. Close the bathroom door to make sure she stays close. If you’re lucky enough to have a glass-enclosed shower, your preschooler would love sitting in a shallow bath while you keep an eye on her splashing with her toys. Who needs to buy a water table?
Cleanliness is not only good for the body, it’s good for the soul. You’ll be amazed at how rejuvenated you’ll feel after even a quick wash. It’s often more refreshing than sleep, especially the kind of power naps you’re likely grabbing where you wake up to a raging child and don’t feel rested at all. Showers will always make you feel rested, even if they’re only a minute long. Bonus of doing this with your child is that you’re not sacrificing any of your baby-free time, which is hard enough to come by as it is. As well, you’ll be teaching important hygiene habits to your child, something that will be essential once she starts to play with dirt!