Preparing For Baby
Ask any mother the month before baby is due to arrive if she is "ready," and she will set forth reciting her infinite list of to-dos. But what do you really need?
Here is our list of FIVE, and only five things that you NEED to do before baby gets here.
1. Stop all of it.
Jk... kind of. In our society, mothers are encouraged to ramp up before baby arrives. Prep the nursery, paint your house, make meals for a football team. We have so many things to do, right? The reality is this: The moment that baby is born, your world will come to a COMPLETE halt. Whether baby is born vaginally or cesarean, a human has come out of your body, and those emails aren't going to get answered, and that bathroom isn't getting renovated for at least a little while while you heal and adore your newest creation. The real key is not to hit the brakes and possibly skid out, but to come to a slow stop. Baby doesn't need a plush crib right away. They don't need toys. They don't need an instagrammable nursery. There is time for that, Mama.
2. Food Sign-Ups
Setting up a registry?
Set up a MealTrain or something similar at the same time! New mamas, breastfeeding mamas, excited daddies, everyone needs ample amounts of nutrient-rich food that you can't or just won't be able to make yourself, so ask friends and family to do it for you! The easiest way to present this is at a baby shower. Send around a sign-up for the first few weeks after baby is due to arrive, and ask that if people want to come see baby, they also bring a meal with them. Mac and cheese, quiche, casseroles are all great suggestions.
3. On a similar note, Tell People When They Can Visit
Do you want people there right away in the hospital? Do you want a couple of sweet days for just you guys and baby before others come? It's your choice. Let me say that again, IT'S YOUR CHOICE. Don't let excited grandparents or bully know-it-alls tell you that you have to have it one way or the other. Talk to your partner and decide what kind of postnatal landscape you want as a family and tell people, "This is how it is." Be strong, Mama. You're going to need to be for at least another eighteen years.
4. Sign up for ECFE or New Mama groups
No one expects the hormones, loneliness and many other emotions that can creep during maternity leave. Sign up for your postnatal groups now and ask that someone holds you accountable to it, whether it be another pregnant mama or your partner.
5. Product-wise, there are some things to stock up on
- Breast pump: You won't know your feeding situation until baby is here and latched or not, so have the pump on hand just in case. Sometimes you need to go through insurance, and it's good to make the calls, set things up while you have the energy for it.
- Diapers: Easily overlooked as you don't have baby yet, but get them now because those things pee and poop right away!
- Car seat: You'll need this to even get home! My dearest husband waited until my water broke and we were on the way to the hospital to throw the car seat in (in the box still) Luckily our nurses were patient when it was time to go home. Do it now, though.
- Pads and padsicles: There is likely to be bleeding... a lot of bleeding... for a long time, stock up more than you think. Plan for three weeks of heavy, 2-3 weeks of medium to low.
- A really great leakproof bra... *cough cough*
- Netflix subscription: Because what else are you gonna do?
Well, that's the small list. Start with those and trust us when we say, everything else can wait!
Featured image from: https://www.baby-chick.com/unique-baby-shower-gift-ideas/