Mommy Brain is no joke. It usually starts in pregnancy and proceeds throughout your lifetime as a mommy. Of course it has peaks and troughs (can you say- newborn phase!?).
I have been experiencing mommy brain a lot more often more recently. Maybe it’s because my mother with dementia has visited for one day too many…is that contagious? (just kidding). Since I’ve been feeling more clouded than clear lately, I wanted to see if there is something I could do to help this mommy brain.
Do you ever get those “ah-ha!” moments?
You know, the ones where everything instantly goes from confusion and uncertainty to clarity and understanding. Yeah, I love those moments!
Usually we are blissfully unaware of our mommy-brain…until [BOOM!] we are hit with one of those ah-ha moments and our world is instantly changed. Sometimes it is turned upside down, but in the end it is usually a good thing our brain started to fire the neurons even if it means we are about to have to “do something”.
Take the night before Easter for example, that was a major case of mommy brain…
What thing do parents of little ones need to remember surrounding the Easter Holiday?
Yep, I forgot the Easter baskets. How does that even happen?
Now when I say I forgot, I mean for real. Like forgot it was even a thing I need to do. Not forgot like “oh, I was supposed to stop at the grocery store to grab the eggs”. So after my long shift at work, I am sitting on the couch and scrolling through FB when I see a parent talking about their last minute Easter basket stuffing…I freak/freeze.
I think I went into a sort of daydream actually where I acted out scenes of the possible impending scenarios which could arise if I
a) don’t make a midnight run to Walmart right this instant
b) risk it and try to do it in the morning
c) share some crazy story explaining how the Easter bunny could not bring them a basket this year (this scene had lots of crying and disappointment- I immediately turned the channel on this sad scene).
To give you the quick ending on that one- we actually chose B. I know, risky. It was the hubs idea. He is a morning person. However, he did ask me first if we really needed to get the baskets at this point? Like, really? I just gave him the mom-wife stare and that cleared it up for him pretty quickly. It ended up working out, but not without a few kinks. I won’t bore you with those details though. Back to my point.
What was my point again? (ahhhh)
Maybe I need some sort of brain pill (remember that movie Limitless? Awesome movie btw).
All joking aside, I started researching ways to spend less time in mommy brain mode and/or get more of those clear as day, ah-ha moments.
These are the top 5 things we found. Some may surprise you, but there are a couple that are pretty obvious…
- Sleep. Yeah, I know. Duh!
- Nutrients/vitamins- think dark skinned veggies (kale, broccoli, spinach, beets), omegas 3 fats, coconut oil, vitamin B12, vitamin D, probiotics
- Music! Yes, listening to music has shown to enhance cognitive functioning and improve mental focus. Crank it up momma!
- Keep the wheels turning! Don’t stop learning. Get in your brain aerobics- think puzzles, trivia, games, learning to play a new instrument, operate a new machine or build something!
- Exercise. Here is why…it improves blood flow to the brain and boosts mitochondria (think brain food) among many other great things.
Pick 1 or 2 above and start implementing them today. Let me know below in a couple weeks if you have noticed a difference.
One last thing. You may be surprised to know that despite us feeling like our brain has left us, it actually increases in size after we have children. The gray matter and the parts of the brain responsible for motivation, emotion processing, sensory integration and reasoning have small but significant growth in volume after we have a baby.
Related Article: 5 Ways to Stay Sane During the 6-Week Sleep Regression