mom and baby

The fourth trimester can be a challenging time full of many complex physical and emotional needs for moms. I found my first postpartum experience to be particularly isolating because I was a new mom and had just relocated to Cape Cod during a pandemic. As I prepare for my third baby to arrive in March, I feel so grateful to have learned about many local resources for new moms that I didn’t know about the first time around. These can help women thrive in their fourth trimester on Cape Cod.

Courses and Playgroups

Cape Cod Children’s Place

One of the greatest resources for new moms is Cape Cod Children’s Place, which is currently offering “Baby’s First Year,” “Pediatric Sleep 101,” “Cuties in Carriers,” and a New Moms Group. There are many courses for new parents. Take a look at their website for up- to-date course offerings and locations.

Cape Cod Hospital

Another place to turn to for postpartum support is Cape Cod Hospital. Courses are available to new parents whether or not you gave birth there. The hospital offers a weekly gathering for moms called “The Fourth Trimester Truth,” as well as courses for breastfeeding, basics of infant care, and Infant/Child CPR. There is also a class offered by appointment only to help older siblings emotionally prepare for the arrival of the baby. “The Fourth Trimester Truth” is currently being offered every Friday. Registration for all course offerings can be found on their website.


One of the biggest challenges of having a new baby can be juggling a toddler on top of that. Luckily, there are plenty of baby-safe places to bring your busy toddler and your newborn. Your local library’s story time is a great way to get everyone out of the house and keep your toddler occupied. Brooks Free Library in Harwich has a great story time every Tuesday and Thursday at 10:30. Their children’s section has so many books and play options. The Eldredge Public Library in Chatham also has an excellent toddler-friendly section with rotating themes, such as a large play kitchen or a puppet show.

Music Together of Cape Cod

Music Together of Cape Cod is a great option for a toddler and newborn. There are various locations throughout the Cape. Depending on the time of year, some courses are offered outdoors or in an indoor studio. The music is perfect entertainment for a newborn, and your toddler will have so much fun dancing, discovering new instruments, and playing with other children.

Get Outside

Taking a walk and getting fresh air is another helpful way to start feeling more like yourself after having a baby. My first postpartum walks were short—they were often only to the end of the street and back. I vividly remember standing in the entryway of my house trying to psych myself up just to walk down the street. With each walk, I grew more comfortable and once I was cleared for exercise, those longer walks became so healing.

The Cape Cod Rail Trail is a great stroller-friendly option if you live on a busier road. 50 Cape Cod Hiking Trails by Lissy Perna of Get Outside Cape Cod offers many stroller- friendly trails all over the Cape. Shop around for a high quality stroller wrap so that you can take a walk in any weather. Baby-wearing walks are another great way to get some fresh air without worrying about a stroller, so finding yourself a comfortable baby carrier can be a game-changer.

baby and toddler in stroller on beach

Postpartum Mental Health

Online Support Groups

Getting to playgroups, classes, or even just taking a walk down your street can be overwhelming. Be gentle and honest with yourself on days that you feel like you just need to stay in. Doing nothing can be tremendously productive and healing. On days you need to hunker down, online support groups are a great place to turn. Even if you aren’t contributing to conversations or asking questions, it can be so validating to read about mothers from around the world who are going through the same thing as you. The Peanut app is a great way to find discussion boards and even connect with local moms.

Medical Care

The fourth trimester and beyond is a roller coaster with the highest highs and some challenging lows. Contact your PCP or OB-GYN if you’re experiencing signs of postpartum depression or anxiety. Postpartum Support International offers a free Help Line that can put you in contact with local maternal mental health resources. If you’re ever feeling helpless and need immediate support, report to your nearest emergency department. After having my second child, I struggled with postpartum anxiety and intrusive thoughts. Finding a great therapist for weekly virtual appointments and starting medications was life-changing.

The first few months after having your baby can be wonderful but also difficult in various unexpected ways. Whether you’re a first-time mother or you’re expecting your second or third, you are never alone in experiencing the wide range of emotions that come with the fourth trimester.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here