When you’re expecting a baby, it feels as though there are a thousand and one things to do. From kitting out your house with all the necessary supplies to reading endless books on how to be a parent without accidentally behaving in a way that will require your child to have years of therapy, it’s a difficult and stressful time in anyone’s life. Here are some tips on what you really need to do before your baby arrives.
Pack Your Hospital Bag
In the last few weeks before you give birth, the uncertainty is one of the hardest things to deal with. Part of you wants to get the discomfort over with and to meet your baby as quickly as you possibly can, while another part of you is afraid about how much your life is about to change so you kind of want that baby to stay in there forever! But the uncertainty about when you will give birth is difficult as it means that you can’t make many plans and you’re just sitting around waiting for your kid to make its grand appearance into the world. It’s important, then, to make sure that you have packed a hospital bag, so you aren’t running around flinging things into a backpack mid-contraction. In your bag you should make sure that you have your medical information, your birth plan, some flipflops so you don’t have to walk on the hospital floor barefoot, a pair of soft socks, a comfortable pillow, a phone charger, and supplies for after the baby is born like maternity pads, toiletries, comfortable underwear, nursing bras, and a comfortable nightdress. For the baby, pack babygrows, nappies, wipes, a soft blanket made for newborns, and socks and booties. You also need to make sure that you have installed your baby’s car seat.
Sort Out Your Baby’s Room
In the weeks before they give birth, a lot of mothers add some extra touches to their baby’s room – you’ve probably already done research on the best baby mattresses, which paint is non-toxic, whether you should prepare for co-sleeping, so why not add some smaller details to the room? Go online and find some personalised art that you can hang on the wall, and add some soft cushions to the chair where you’re planning to nurse, so that you’ll definitely be comfortable.
Prepare Freezer Meals
After your baby is born, your life will suddenly get a whole lot more hectic, so it’s a good idea to prepare some food and freeze it so that you can eat healthy, nutritious dinners with a minimal amount of preparation. If a friend asks if they can do anything to help, this is a practical thing that you could ask them to do – you’ll want to have a good variety of food in the freezer so you don’t have to think too much about cooking. There are a lot of dishes that you could go for – lasagna is a great one, along with pasta bake, chicken fajitas, curry, and any sort of casserole. Heat them up, add some salad, and you’ll be set for a healthy and delicious dinner that will keep your energy levels up.
After your baby is born, you know that life as you know it is going to change. So you should use those last few weeks as a way to pamper yourself and enjoy your freedom – and your ability to get out of the house without a large stroller and changing bag! Go shopping and pick up a few new cute baby outfits, as well as a couple of treats for yourself that you can enjoy post-baby like fragrant body wash and body lotion. You could even invest in a tablet or a kindle so you have something to do during those late night feeds. Get your hair and nails done – you might not get time to do that again for a while! You should also watch plenty of movies – going to the cinema is something that fades into the past for a lot of parents, so make the most of that big screen experience while you can (and make sure you sit near the door for those all too frequent bathroom breaks…). Make sure you don’t go for a film that’s too bleak or depressing – remember your hormones are all over the place so it might affect you more than it usually would.
Just remember: even if you’re nervous about the way your life is changing, just know that it’s going to get even better!
**This is a collaborative post**