Keeping a Journal When You Have a New Baby

Skip the technology and use this simple and effective way to help you cherish your memories and process your emotions as a new mom.

With the birth of my two boys, through the miscarriage of one child, and even throughout my pregnancies, I’m so grateful I took the time to jot my thoughts and stories into a journal to process feelings and preserve memories for years to come.

As a new mom, the tasks of diapers, dinners and details even as simple as getting your own bath can seem overwhelming. Why, then, add another task like journaling to the already expanding list of things to do?

With so many responsibilities pressing upon us as new moms, whether our first baby or tenth, the thought of adding one more thing, even as simple as journaling, on our to-do list can be daunting. I hope these simple ideas will highlight the benefits and simplicity of carving out just a few minutes a day to capture your thoughts on paper and inspire you to write.

Why Journal as a New Mom?

Journaling can help you process emotions.

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As a new mom, we are flooded with hormones, thoughts and emotions. One moment, we’re consumed with the amazing joy we are experiencing and the next minute, we can be sobbing over something else. I found keeping a journal describing my feelings helped me to process and make sense of some thoughts, keeping my mind and heart set on the positive and able to weed out the negative.

Philippians 4:8 reminds us, “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

Journaling will help you remember little details.

You may want to remember a special outfit, trip to the park, walk along the beach, or simply something sweet your older child or husband said to you or the new baby. With the overload of technology and things vying for our attention these days, it can be hard to remember details. Crafting them onto paper ensures the most special - and often funny - memories are set and you’ll be able to refer to them later.

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Your journals will become treasured heirlooms later in life.

Even in writing this article for you, I grabbed a couple journals off my shelf where I reminisced of the birth story I’d written for my second son, the lyrics to the lullabies I used to sing, and the blessings I’d asked friends and family to jot into my journal when they came to visit baby for the first time. In fact, I got lost for a bit in the memories. How precious were the words that big brother said to baby brother when I’d stepped away to the restroom, “don’t worry, little brother, your superhero will be right back!”

Journaling can be a “brain-dump” so you can get to the important things.

If we choose to first list all the things on our mind, we can use this time of journaling to get to our hearts and share little glimpses of the joy and love we find every day of motherhood. Often, we’ll even discover things we thought were pressing don’t really make a difference and our journaling process can help us “let-go” of things, thoughts and tasks that really don’t serve our lives or our families.

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Journaling can help you connect to God

Author of Hear God’s Voice Everyday, Cindy Edgett is a big advocate for journaling to connect with God. She reminds us in her book how God is the same yesterday, today and forever, and has spoken to His people all throughout scripture. “When I’m talking about journaling,” Cindy says, “I am speaking of a two-way conversation: you speak to the Lord, and He speaks back to you.

Journaling helps develop your spiritual ears to hear the Lord’s voice. By journaling on paper, you learn to hear and recognize His voice when He is speaking. Then when you are going about your day, you will recognize His voice easier when you hear it, simply because of the time you spent with Him in private.” In Habakkuk 2:2-3, the Lord himself says “write down the vision…

Simple Journaling Tips for New Moms

Pick a Blank Journal

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Leave the “starter” type and guided journals on the shelf at the bookstore. Skip the digital versions and grab your favorite pen(s). Opt for something simple, with blank or ruled pages that allows your own creativity, words, sketches and thoughts to flow without direction from the included pages.

Keep More than One Journal

As a new mom, you’ll have a couple spots around the house which will become your go-to places to rest and sit with baby. These are perfect journaling spots. I always had mine next to my bed and another by my nursing chair. When baby would fall asleep after nursing, I’d grab a journal and jot a few thoughts or ideas.

A Few Words Is Enough

Don’t feel as if you need to write your life story every time you sit down to journal. Even a few words or sentences can help you remember baby’s eyelashes, the way his smile looked up at you, the sweet scent of baby shampoo mixed with mama’s milk and even your mixed emotions.

Processing on Paper

Rather than “venting” to others as it’s become so easy to do in our culture, choose to “vent” as needed onto paper and sort out the thoughts rolling in your head. Putting words onto paper has a supernatural ability to help us see things differently, and can remind us of everyday blessings as we choose to take thoughts captive right onto the page.

Practice Gratitude

If we get beyond the surface of our feelings and get our heart centered on God’s promises and His goodness through gratitude, it will help us remember His promise that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us, even when the days of mommying get so hard. Remembering to count our blessings truly does lead us into a mental state of “counting it all joy”. In turn, our whole household benefits because mommy is at peace.

Do you keep a journal, mama? Any tips for other moms wanting to start journaling?

Jen Reyneri

Jen Reyneri

Renaissance Woman Jen Reyneri and her husband Luis often live life on the road with their two home-schooled sons. Popular author and speaker, Jen is founder of Spirited and spirit filled, she savors life, poetic words, sabbaticals and strong coffee.

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