Northern Virginia mom and author preaches the importance of self-care

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Kristy Rodriguez

Photo courtesy of Kristy Rodriguez

By Micaela Williamson

Kristy Rodriguez had already been working as a holistic health coach for several years when she became pregnant with her first child. Her physical, mental and emotional challenges during that pregnancy piqued her interest in prenatal wellness.

“When my first daughter was 10 months old, I was diagnosed with postpartum depression, something I thought only happened in the first few weeks or months after birth. During my second pregnancy, I closed my practice to focus on motherhood and daydreamed about what would come next,” says Rodriguez.

Rodriguez decided it was time to go back to school and specialize in prenatal health. Now, she is the founder and owner of Pure Nurture and educates women—individual clients and groups in classes and workshops—to nurture and nourish themselves throughout pregnancy, birth and postpartum. Her new book, Pure Nurture: A Holistic Guide to a Healthy Baby, aims to support women during this special time in their lives, knowing the better care they take of themselves, the better care they are taking of their growing baby. Rodriguez shared some of her favorite tips for moms to work self-care into their daily routines.

Why do moms today need self-care more than ever?

We live very hectic lives. The rates of depression and anxiety are on the rise, and women—especially moms—are feeling the strain and [are] overwhelmed in our day-to-day lives. Often our needs go on the back burner, and we end up running on fumes. In order to be the best moms we can be, we must fill ourselves up. The more we do that, the more we have to give.

What do you tell moms that say they have no time for self-care?

We make time for what is essential in our lives. My goal is to encourage women to see that self-care is essential. I also teach them that self-care looks different for different people. Some have preconceived notions of what self-care means and see it as selfish or extravagant, like spending the entire day at the spa. This is not true. Self-care can be five minutes out of your day, a weekend retreat with a good friend or anything in between.

Tell us some simple ways mothers can work self-care into their daily routine.

Schedule [self-care], even if it’s only five minutes. Put it in your calendar and stick to it. Don’t move it or delete it. Make that time for you a top priority. Connect with a buddy. If going to a yoga class is your way of practicing self-care, ask a friend to join you. Knowing you have someone counting on you to meet them will make you more likely to go. [And] journal. Keep track of how you feel after your self-care time and notice the positive impact it has on your well-being and on your relationships, especially with your kids and your partner. That positive reinforcement can help you keep the self-care practice going.

Tell us about your new book, Pure Nurture: A Holistic Guide to a Healthy Baby.

There is so much fear-based information out there related to pregnancy. I wanted to turn that on its head and write a book where women are supported and empowered in a loving and nonjudgmental way.

What are some of your favorite gifts for pregnant women and new moms?

If you can, giving the gift of a service is so helpful. New moms have a lot on their plates, so having someone help with house cleaning, cooking, child care or running errands can be one of the very best gifts. I also love to give subscription boxes since they are the gift that literally keeps on giving. I love the Honest Company, Bump Boxes or LuxeMamma for new and expectant moms.

Is there anything else our readers should know about self-care?

One of my favorite quotes is by author Juliette de Bairacli Levy: “The health of every family begins with the mother. She is the tree from which the healthy fruit must come.”  Make self-care a priority, not only for your own health and well-being but for your loved ones as well.

(Mother’s Day Guide)

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