Momover, The New Mom's Guide to Getting It Back Together by Dana Wood, with foreword by Veronica Webb, is a hysterically real-to-life account of motherhood, giving new moms some straightforward tips to recovery.
Dana Wood is not only the author, but she is also a mother, wife, and is currently the senior fashion features editor of W magazine. Wood was also the health and beauty director of Cookie, touted as the stylish parenting magazine for the new, modern mom.
Wood shares her own motherhood experiences, advice, and even mistakes in this amazing self-help like book. It's something I'd recommend to all of my pregnant or new mommy friends.
After I had my first child I became just a mommy. If I had only read this book before, or even right after, I had my daughter, I might not have had to learn the hard way how to get myself back.
I love how this book discusses real motherhood, not the super-flowery, pretty sid of motherhood, and not the cynical depressed side either, just straight up, call it like it is motherhood. It's a great balance of the two sides, yin and yang, and makes me laugh because it's so true to life.
In my opinion, even if you're a second-time mommy like me, there are still great things to be learned from this book. Several of the chapters are dedicated to taking care of yourself, because, well, let's face it, if we as mommies can't take care of us, can we really take care of a little baby?
Part 1 talks about getting it together mentally. I have some friends who've been overcome with post-partum depression and while a book isn't going to simply take that away, it may help through the baby blues and may even bring attention to the signs.
Wood reminds us that we don't need to be a Supermom and it's okay to learn to monotask; that's right, just do one thing at a time. For many of us multi-tasking mommas this is a difficult feat, but in some cases, for sanity's sake, this is the best advice someone could give.
She says, "Do what you're doing," meaning don't think ahead at what you'll be doing the next hour, next day, enjoy the time that you're in, and in some cases I agree it's nice to stop and smell the roses, and in some cases I probably wouldn't have locked myself out of the house if I wasn't carrying the baby, diaper bag, talking on the phone, and trying to remember where I was going in the first place.
At the same time multi-tasking has saved me a bunch of time in my mommy life, although I may just save that for when the babies are bigger, because as we all know, they are only little once.
Wood discusses getting it together physically in Part 2, that's the part of post partum experience I'm at right now. I like how she addresses it as making sure that your body is ready first, she doesn't want someone who had a baby or c-section for that matter doing Baby Boot Camp three days or even three weeks after birth, but she does say that once you've gotten the okay from the doctor get started.
In the chapter: In the six month window, Wood really stresses getting your butt off the couch before you just keep piling the weight on, it's much easier to lose if you start slow and early. "So I'm begging you to drop the Swiffer, unplug the DustBuster, and prioriize your physical and mental health."
This is one of my favorite parts too because she talks about healthy ways to get and conserve energy, looking at your nutrition by writing foodlogs, My favorite quote from the book is here: "One way to keep yourself "honest" on the food front is to keep a food log. There's just something about knowing she'll have to jot down "one-half roll of peanut butter cookie dough" in a daily food log that makes a wannabe hot mama less inclined to eat it."
Lastly, Wood discusses the emotional and spiritual aspects of the Momover. Chapers 13 through 19 talk a lot about learning how to journal, just get everything out on paper instead of bottling it up, taking a time out for yourself, getting some well needed rest, what every mom needs, and the importance of making yourself a priority.
Along with this great advice, Wood gives some amazing references for those who want to go a little deeper into the topics she brings up in her, "Dig Deeper Appendix." The Appendix lists several websites, books, organizations, to aid you in becoming that mom that you want to be.
Many times in parenthood our children come first and we as moms are left wondering what happened to the pre-baby version of ourselves. While we should not neglect our children, we do need to remember ourselves, mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually in order to be the best mom we can be.
One way we can put ourselves on the front burner would be to read and absorb the message from this book, Momover: The New Mom's Guide to Getting It Back Together (even if you never had it in the first place!)