Things I wish I had done/known and tips about birth and just after... - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 01:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
alexsam's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 3,276
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
This morning I was thinking of some of the great tips I got and things that really helped when I had my first son and I thought I should share them and start a thread... Of course, not all of them are perfect for everyone, but here goes...

1.) If you are doing traditional (snail mail) birth announcements, buy them BEFORE the baby is born and address them. In those final days before birth, there is often a lot of sitting around. It is a perfect time to address all the announcements and stamp them and such so after the baby is born, you can fill out the info and pop them in the mail. Lots of time saved.

2.) Get a few nice nightgowns and a nice robe. One for the hospital, one or two for home. DO NOT GET DRESSED when you go home until you are ready to venture out. People will show up after the baby is born for well wishes, dropping off food and gifts, etc. If you greet them dressed and in hostess mode, they tend to stay longer, maybe expect you to do things... If you show up to the door clean and brushed, but in a nightgown and a nice robe, they remember you may need some TLC and they are friendly, but visits are short. Excellent!

3.) Have some cash on you the few days after the birth. Often people will ask if there is anything you need or they can do for you. It is helpful to have a little cash if you feel comfortable asking them to pick up some milk or run to the pharmacy. Or even if you just need to order pizza.

4.) Stock up on trashy/light hearted magazines for labor and after. Do not bring "War and Peace" with you. Bring something you can skim and short snippets to read for down times during labor and for those first few days.

5.) If you don't need lots of gifts for the shower, ask people to bring a healthy meal that can go in the freezer. If you don't have a shower, make a few freezer meals. You will not want to cook after the baby is born.

6.) Set up the nursery before hand. After the baby comes home, life is hectic. That mobile in the box just sits there. You have to run out for batteries for the monitor. You find you got the wrong size sheets. This can be avoided with a weekend of "setting up".

7.) Buy baby first aid things BEFORE the baby comes home. That first upset call to the doctor in the middle of the night and guarenteed they are going to ask for the baby's temperature, give tylenol, etc. It is a lot easier to have that on-hand to start.

8.) GO TO THE DENTIST. GET YOUR HAIR CUT. GET YOUR OIL CHANGED. Do all the little "routine" things that you do for yourself or make any "grown up" appointments now because after the baby is born, these things are MUCH harder to do.

9.) Start going to La Leche League, interview and choose a doctor for the baby, etc. The first time you have any problems with a first born babe, you will need help fast and without knowing what your resources are, it is difficult.

10.) Buy a package of thank-you cards. As soon as you get a gift, write it out just then, mail it. If you have to wait, things get muddled.

11.) Buy a baby scrap book. Keeping track of pregnancy/birth health and baby's milestones is more than just a cute activity. It is a very real possibility that later in your child's life you will be asked about these things, so keeping accurate records from the begining is really helpful.

Anyone else?
alexsam is offline  
#2 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 02:11 PM
 
zoshamosha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 740
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Thanks for the tips! Those are great. You just reminded me I need to get my driver's license renewed ASAP.
zoshamosha is offline  
#3 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 03:02 PM
 
hopeandolive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: US
Posts: 193
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by alexsam View Post
1.) If you are doing traditional (snail mail) birth announcements, buy them BEFORE the baby is born and address them. In those final days before birth, there is often a lot of sitting around. It is a perfect time to address all the announcements and stamp them and such so after the baby is born, you can fill out the info and pop them in the mail. Lots of time saved.


Anyone else?
Great post! I just wanted say that I enjoy doing the photo announcements from drug stores (CVS, Walgreens etc) and obviously you can't get these in advance of baby's arrival, so I buy the "Avery" brand labels that can be preprinted with addresses (also very handy for Christmas cards etc).

I also wanted to add get some stool softener....those first BM's post delivery can be very painful!

And if you plan on nursing you may want to bring your nusing pillow to the hospital, have some Lansinoh cream on hand and nursing pads (disposable or re-usuable)
hopeandolive is offline  
#4 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 03:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
alexsam's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 3,276
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Yes... And menstrual pads
alexsam is offline  
#5 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 03:30 PM
 
crosscat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Memphis
Posts: 1,398
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
These are really great tips! I'm so glad you started this thread!
crosscat is offline  
#6 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 03:33 PM
 
jencat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Midwesterner living in SoCal
Posts: 867
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Keep it coming ladies! I'm going to save this thread!!
jencat is offline  
#7 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 04:05 PM
 
Mrshawwk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Redmond, Wa
Posts: 746
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Have lots of just plain comfy T shirts ready to go. When your milk comes in you leak all over the place, plus the baby spits on you all the time. If you have a pile of clean shirts handy you can change quickly. If you have black T shirts, the milk leaking won't be as noticeable, especially if you have visitors around.

I like to have a nitelite in my room so I can see the baby at night without harsh light.

A rice sock is nice to abdominal pain from birth or afterpains (which for me were so much worse for 2nd and 3rd children!). Take an old tube sock, fill it with rice and tie a good knot at the end. Then just pop it in the microwave for a couple minutes and it is nice and warm and adjustable for anywhere you need relief.

BIG bras for engorgement!!
Mrshawwk is offline  
#8 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 04:11 PM
 
Cheshire's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: My yellow submarine
Posts: 2,183
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
In addition to pads get some witch hazel and witch hazel pads (in case you are healing a tear or birthed a hemrroid in addition to your new baby).

Stock up on healthy snack foods. I never really had time to fix myself a meal the first month or two when I was home alone with baby so I snacked on not so healthy foods).

I loved my "baby's first year" books. I referred to them constantly so I would know when to call the doc, when to chill out, etc.
Cheshire is offline  
#9 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 04:13 PM
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,329
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
BARELY damp a pad...form it to your body, and then freeze it. It will be a great relief to soreness.
mkmama is offline  
#10 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 07:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
alexsam's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 3,276
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Snacks for at home after are key. Also, some frozen lunch type things... They have them in the healthy stores now... little pizzas, burritos, etc. Once all the relatives left, I had to make lunch for myself... and didn't want to!

Nightlights! Yes!

Also, if there is anything you want "footprinted", take it to the hospital and they will ink them when the do the baby's feet for the certificates. Sometimes there is a sheet in the baby scap book, or if you want it just on nice paper to frame... Bring them and let them know ahead of time and they will foot stamp what you ask .

Also, for a hospital birth, eat before you go. Many times they don't want you to eat in labor there (dumb, but true). So, either talk it over first with your health care provider to see if they will give you permission to eat during labor in the hospital. If it seems like it will be an issue, make sure to eat before you go.

Also, for the hospital birth, make your spouse/partner pack themselves a meal and snacks. THEY will be hungry and you don't want them dissapearing because they are starving and need to go to the cafeteria. Also, with many hospitals the way they are, have your PARTNER pack an overnight bag, as they can often stay too. If nothing else, they will want a clean shirt and a toothbrush in the hours ahead .

You may want something sentimental from you (to the baby) in the hospital. Like, for my son, we carried him out of the hospital in a special blanket. We saved our hospital bracelets and the little hat they put the babies in. Think if there is anything you would like to make a keepsake, as it will have meaning if it is there at the birth and fist days.
alexsam is offline  
#11 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 08:42 PM
 
Hesperia's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: In limbo between our dreams
Posts: 2,050
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Having a flash back to my brothers birth (almost 9 yrs ago now).

If you are having a hospital birth, check how they expect you to pay(edit: for parking). Some are just a ticket now, but often (specially in short term) they only use loonies or twonies (or, gosh, American money!). Tape the correct change for 24 hours+ under the dash...now!

Birth Attendant. Placenta Encapsulator. Reiki Practitioner. Vegan. Aspiring Midwife. Breastfeeding Educator Student. Two years of trying for our love child.
Hesperia is offline  
#12 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 08:57 PM
 
love14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 139
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
: 1st time mom here no tips just subbing for more great suggestions

Jenn EDD 3/20/10 with two 3/06 Jaden 06/08
love14 is offline  
#13 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 09:23 PM
 
ChristyM26's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Kannapolis, NC
Posts: 1,937
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Wow... this is awesome. And so well timed!

Mama to Aeden, : my little NICU grad and Conner and Liam () my precious twins. is due mid April!
ChristyM26 is offline  
#14 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 09:46 PM
 
KristyDi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: The 'burbs of Atlanta
Posts: 2,731
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by hopeandolive View Post
And if you plan on nursing you may want to bring your nusing pillow to the hospital, have some Lansinoh cream on hand and nursing pads (disposable or re-usuable)
: and use the Lansinoh after every feeding. Don't wait till your nipples start hurting, like I did. And be aware that it will leave grease stains on bras/t-shirts.

If you're doing a hospital birth, wear the hospital gown till the bleeding backs off a bit. No need to bleed on something you'll have to wash when you get home.

Kristy, wife to Josh proud mama to Katie: since 3/08 and Emma since 8/12.

KristyDi is offline  
#15 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 09:48 PM
 
Juvysen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Binghamton, NY
Posts: 7,479
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Olive oil on the baby's butt makes meconium WAY more easy to clean off. I mean WAY more easy. Before you put on the first diaper smear some olive oil on there and before you put on any new diapers. Totally worth it.

Also... unless you're doing cloth mama pads, go for the depends. After my first birth, I bled like crazy for days, blood everywhere (TMI, I know). I swore I'd use depends postpartum the next time. They're way more comfortable on a sore perineum than those logs *ahem* pads that they give you in the hospital or birth kit, too.

Jenna ~ mommy to Sophia Elise idea.gif  (1/06), Oliver Matthew  blahblah.gif (7/07) and Avery Michael fly-by-nursing1.gif(3/10)

 

dizzy.gif Wading slowly and nervously into this homeschooling thing.

Juvysen is offline  
#16 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 09:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
alexsam's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 3,276
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
ok- let's think... what else...?

I think most people know, but just in case... Don't pack any of your pre-maternity clothes to wear back from the hospital. You will not fit in them. Sweats, maternity pants, a big dress... No regular jeans! Bring underwear that you don't mind getting ruined (there is a lot of blood, that is normal). Bring menstrual pads. The biggest you can get .

Be prepared that the hospital will want to see your installed carseat before they let the baby go home. It is actually really helpful to install it a week or two before and you can have it inspected by your local police or fire dept. for free who will make sure it is installed properly. Call them and they will tell you when to come in.

Get and pack a diaper bag BEFORE the baby is born (after is just hectic). If nothing else, mosy doctors want a 2 week baby check up. Having a ready diaper bag is one less thing to grapple with in those first few crazy days.

Put an EXTRA SHIRT FOR YOU (and some extra breast pads) in the diaper bag. There is lots of milk and leaking. It's nice to have a clean shirt.

If you choose to vaccinate, they will probably give you a little book in the hospital. to keep your own records of vaccination. Make sure you get the vaccine name, the date, the lot number, the pharma company that made it and the name of the doctor that oversaw the vax and take this booklet to every doctors appointment where the baby will get a new vax and require them to fill it out every time. Keep this in a safe place with your records.

The hospital will most likely give you a diaper bag with formula samples. If you will not need these, there are places that you can donate them (food banks, organizations that help breast cancer survivors, organizations for HIV infected mothers, etc).

Treat yourself to something and maybe drop some not-so-subtle hints to your partner that something sweet and kind in recognition of becoming a mother would be welcome. There are some places that have special limo packages home from the hospital. Or flowers. Or a present. A little something sentimental for your partner from you is also nice . Remember, it is the birth of a baby, but it is also a huge change in your life as well. A little something to celebrate and mark the moment for mommy and/or daddy is nice.
alexsam is offline  
#17 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 10:09 PM
 
MeepyCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 3,747
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 47 Post(s)
I feel like we need a lazy mama list here, too.

I have never been a scrap book/baby book person. I cannot imagine a reason why I would need to know EXACTLY when DS cut his first tooth or took his first steps - if there's an issue with a developmental delay or other health problem, the ballpark figure will do. It's not like it's a question the bank is going to ask me.

Cosleeping reduces the amount of furniture you have to shuffle and maximizes your sleep! We did not set up the actual nursery until DS had been home for two weeks. No, none of those cute mobiles we got as gifts have ever been hung, but it's not like we *used* the nursery for the first month, really.

There is no need to get "nice" nightgowns to wear in front of visitors. A bathrobe splattered with spit up or breast milk will send the same message, and you almost certainly already have a bathrobe. (On a serious note, some people find hanging around in their pajamas depressing, and those people should get dressed. Clothes do not automatically equal "hostess mode.")

"Helpful" visitors are sometimes the most exhausting kind. People who come over to do things for you often need instruction and guidance: where do the plates go? how do you sort your silverware? People who bring meals may leave you with a sink full of dishes. Even people who you'd think should know better are sometimes so blitzed by the presence of the baby that they wind up being demanding guests. There is no need to stand for this. Feel free to begin explaining to people that what you need - what you really, really need - is to watch a silly movie and have a margarita, and that the best way for them to enable that is to hold down the other end of your sofa and make sure the spare margarita glass doesn't get lonely. Promise not to quiz them on the movie, so that they can stare at the baby if they like.

If you have a hospital birth, sneak out as many of the post-partum cold pack pads as you can.
MeepyCat is online now  
#18 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 10:21 PM
 
_betsy_'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 4,687
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Take a deck of cards, that morning's newspaper, some light snacks and a change of clothes for DP if you are birthing outside the home.

Take your own pillow, and put it in a pillowcase that is not white - patterned or a solid color other than white - to distinguish from the hospital or birthing center's linens.

After, remember you just had a baby. Even if you're feeling great, had the world's easiest PG and a 2-hour L&D, your body really did go through a lot. Rest. have someone else get you water, a snack, a pillow, the remote, whatever. DO NOT PLAY HOSTESS!
_betsy_ is offline  
#19 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 10:35 PM
 
~Ryleigh's Mommy~'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 253
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Depends underwear instead of maxi pads

Use the maxi pads as ice packs though. Squirt some water into the absorbent part of the pad and put it in the freezer. It's less harsh than an actual ice pack, and when the water melts it won't leak anywhere. Do this BEFORE the baby is born, so they are frozen when you need them after the birth.

This is something that's kind of embarrassing, but one thing I was really grateful I did, was use a depilatory cream "down there" when I thought I was getting close to labor. It made keeping clean MUCH easier than dealing with the clotty lochia stuck to a bunch of hair Don't shave..it grows back so fast, is itchy when it grows back, and I wouldn't want to have to deal with trying to shave a swollen 'area'. The cream lasted about 3 weeks, enough time for the bleeding to really back off and the swelling to go down.

I know it's great to be able to sleep on your tummy following the birth, after months of not being able to sleep that way, but be careful-- if you are sleeping on your tummy the night that your milk comes in, you will be in P-A-I-N
~Ryleigh's Mommy~ is offline  
#20 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 10:52 PM
 
Qestia's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Boston
Posts: 2,020
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The one thing I'd wish I'd known was that DS wasn't going to starve to death. There's so much pressure to supplement with formula, which I gave in to, and I think it permanently damaged our breastfeeding relationship. Now I know better--and I won't let them scare me again.

Mom to DS 5/05 and DD 9/08
Qestia is offline  
#21 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 11:07 PM
 
KristyDi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: The 'burbs of Atlanta
Posts: 2,731
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Oh, I just remembered, the nurses at the hospital made a pad into an ice pack by cutting a slit in the back of the pad and adding crushed ice then taping the slit closed. It worked great!

Kristy, wife to Josh proud mama to Katie: since 3/08 and Emma since 8/12.

KristyDi is offline  
#22 of 61 Old 03-31-2008, 11:35 PM
 
bdoody11's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Perpetual Bliss
Posts: 1,499
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Another ice pack tip... take a newborn dipe (disposable, of course) and fill it with ice. Fold it over on itself and tape. You can keep it in the freezer until your ready and then just pop it in.

As for tips, mmmm... I guess my tip would be not to stress too much. Prepare the best you can and if need something you've forgotten your DP/parents/friends will pitch in and get it done.

And really, resting and getting to know your baby is most important thing you'll do. Good luck to all of the mamas who have babes on the way!

Mama to my beautiful Ana Carolina (2/07), Isabel Cristina (6/10), and #3 on the way in August 2013!

bdoody11 is offline  
#23 of 61 Old 04-01-2008, 12:17 AM
 
moonglowmama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: humid-ville
Posts: 619
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
* Make a list those last few weeks of small jobs people can do to help you out around the house: fill dishwasher, start a load of towels, sweep kitchen, etc.

* if you're doing a baby book, keep it near a place you think you'll breastfeed most often.

* get a cheap foot stool to keep near the couch or wherever you nurse, it helps to be able to prop up your feet. Also, keep lots of various-sized pillows nearby until you figure out which ones work best.

* when people ask if they can get you anything, say yes! yogurt, frozen burritos, fruit, sliced cheese, anything that you can eat with one hand and just grab and go. I can remember not even being able to microwave food to eat. Now, of course, I don't know why it was so hard, but that's how it goes, I guess.

* I always sleep on the couch for the first month or 2. I can semi-lounge, with the baby on my chest, tummy to tummy. They sleep really well that way and I KNOW everything's good with them. Plus, I can lean my body against the back of the couch, which is really good support.

* keep a baby seat in the bathroom so you'll be able to pee and shower.

* drink lots of water.

* if you're doing herbal baths following birth, put some of the good water in your peri bottle before getting in.

that's all for now....so fun to think about all this again!
moonglowmama is offline  
#24 of 61 Old 04-01-2008, 10:43 AM
 
wholewheatmama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 815
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by MeepyCat View Post
"Helpful" visitors are sometimes the most exhausting kind. People who come over to do things for you often need instruction and guidance: where do the plates go? how do you sort your silverware? People who bring meals may leave you with a sink full of dishes. Even people who you'd think should know better are sometimes so blitzed by the presence of the baby that they wind up being demanding guests. There is no need to stand for this. Feel free to begin explaining to people that what you need - what you really, really need - is to watch a silly movie and have a margarita, and that the best way for them to enable that is to hold down the other end of your sofa and make sure the spare margarita glass doesn't get lonely. Promise not to quiz them on the movie, so that they can stare at the baby if they like.
Yes, yes, yes!

People really do WANT to be helpful, but sometimes telling them how to help is more work than just doing it yourself. It is a huge help to, while still pregnant, jot down instructions for how you do laundry, use your dishwasher, feed your pets, etc. Either keep it all in one place or at the site (post on the D/W, near the pet food bowls, etc.). My dogs have a complicated food/medication schedule, so I printed that all up along with a chart of when they'd been fed so they didn't get over or underfed. I meant to do that for other things like laundry but didn't get around to it.

Also, keep a dry erase board with chores that need to be done. If anyone asks if you need anything, just point to the board. That way, the guest can choose which chore to do. Some people might be okay with walking your dog or doing your dishes, others would prefer to take out the trash. This also makes it less awkward to ask for help.

And, DEPENDS! I know it sounds horrible, but trust me! I was totally against this idea but grabbed a package the day I went into labor, and boy was I glad to have them. I actually wore them during labor (homebirth) because I leaked a steady leak the whole time and was going through pads way too fast. They were wonderful for PP bleeding as well for that first few days. Once you get past the ick factor of wearing adult diapers, you will LOVE them!

Lynn, single lesbian mama to All Mighty Iris 12/10/07
wholewheatmama is offline  
#25 of 61 Old 04-01-2008, 01:03 PM
 
Violet2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,815
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
-I second the olive oil or some other greasy ointment on the baby's butt and really the entire area. That meconium is really sticky.

-Learn to use your slow cooker now because you will never have time to cook big meals for the next year.

-For the baby book, I use shutterfly and do it all electronically. Saves time, is more efficient, and creates a photo backup in case your pc crashes.

-Get strong! You know why women have a permanent view of their navels by the time they're eighty? It's from craning their necks to get a looky-loo at the baby for hours on end. At least by the time we're stuck in that position, it doesn't hurt anymore.

So mommas and mommas-to-be, listen up. Motherhood is not ergonomic. Your neck will hurt. Your back will hurt. Your arms will burn and shake from fatigue. Lift weights and get in shape before the baby comes or stock up on Tylenol and massage gift certificates.

-Practice employing the law of concurrent work because being super efficient is the only way you will get anything done.

-Babyproof before the kiddo comes. You do not have time to research, debate options, shop, and install all the safety dewdads after the baby comes. Yes, bending over when you're eight months pregnant is hard, but it's much more dangerous to bend over and attempt to install plug protectors with a wobbly infant perched on your shoulder.

-You will forget something, so build fail safes into your life. A few diapers and travel wipes in the backseat pocket for when you forget the diaper bag. Some gladware containers in your office for the days you forget to bring milk storage bags or the lids to the milk containers. A few dollars tucked into the sun visor for parking fees or quick drive-thru lunches. A spare house key at a trusted neighbor's. Make sure your fail safes provide essentials for the baby, emergency money, and ensure you can get back into your house/car.

-Panic is normal. Feeling overwhelmed is normal. Think about it, every single aspect of your life has changed. You don't pee when you want to, shower when you want to, or eat when you want to, your entire life has been subverted by a newborn's schedule. Expectations of 'me time' are lowered to just five minutes alone in the shower or on the toilet. If you don't get a little freaked out by it all, there's something wrong with you.I tell people my daughter ripped out all my roots and planted new ones. Some days, their growing pains bring me to my knees.

Just because your child is the best thing that ever happened to you and just because your feel like your heart is eight times too big with love doesn't mean this parenting gig is easy.

V

Happy Momma to DD (almost 3) Fall Coleslaw -- Simple Italian Stuffed Peppers -- - Fall Toddler Activities.- We Made a Play Kitchen Selling gently used books on all topics here.
Violet2 is offline  
#26 of 61 Old 04-01-2008, 01:39 PM
 
sunnymw's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: SWGA
Posts: 2,367
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Oh, the things I wish I'd known!!!!!

-in the hospital... the final decision is ALWAYS yours, not the doctor/nurse's. Except with a court ordered c/s anyway. Don't let them bully you into something you don't need/want because not doing it could "hurt the baby"... it's a guilt trip, and it's very often a lie.

-bring more than 1 outfit for baby in the hospital. Bring more than one outfit for YOU, too.

-I wish I had known co-sleeping was okay. even great. Instead I didn't sleep at all the first night, thinking DS would stop breathing in the plastic box for no reason. So I actually had him taken to the nursery for awhile once I got delusional, because I never thought to just put him in the bed WITH ME. And that's when he got FORMULA.



V said it best though. I can't top that!

Sunny coolshine.gif: gun toting, retired breastfeeding, car seat loving, guitar playing, home birthing and schooling mama to Jakob (10.06), Mikah (07.08) and Korah (07.11). uc.jpg 

sunnymw is offline  
#27 of 61 Old 04-01-2008, 02:42 PM
 
treehugginhippie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 2,011
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Good thread! I've done this before but need a refresher, lol! And there's good stuff...subbing to read later...

Tina - mama to DD1 10yrs, DD2 5.5 yrs and DD3 22 mo and wifey to DH.
treehugginhippie is offline  
#28 of 61 Old 04-01-2008, 03:54 PM
 
Violet2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,815
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks SunnyMW!

Lemme see. I think I have some more.

1.Newborn sleep isn't too bad IF you buy the Happiest Baby on the Block DVD (Dvd is fun and more time efficient than the book, plus you can watch it with your spouse). However, sleep is NOT a positive progression so I will warn you that the 4 month sleep regression is tough and if you've gone back to work, it might seem like it's all crashing down on you. Maybe plan to take some vacation time during this period and have your spouse take some 1/2 days so you get a few hours of sleep.

My DD kept me up for 3 days during her 4 month sleep regression. I actually ended up quitting my job after that.

Once you're out of the newborn period, sleep can be a little trickier. Swaddling may or may not work. Co-sleeping may or may not work. It's time for a new bag of tricks. Read up on sleep. The No Cry Sleep Solution is a decent option.

2. FYI once you're in the 12 month size you're into outfits. No more cute sleepers. I know it sounds like such a looong time and such a biiig size but my DD hit 12 month size at 4 months due to her height. Sizes last for 2" in length and about a 4-5 pound spread. Which means one size lasts for 4 to 6 weeks. Or less. My Dd outgrew the 9 month size in 3 weeks flat.

3.After the 3 month newborn period things change, but don't necessarily become easier. If you like your parents/family/friends, maybe invite them back to coddle you for a week after the first 3 months. Also look into a mother's helper or establish a relationship with a sitter you trust so you can give yourself a break when you want one.

4.After the first 8 weeks (which are sort of insane and the baby really does need you 24/7)take breaks. Take 'me' time.

5.Make sure your partner knows they will be doing laundry, housework, cooking, and diaper changes. If either of you think momma is going to do it all, you are setting yourself up for a hard, long road. Start working to change that dynamic now before sleep deprivation makes you homicidal. Parenting is a team effort and the job is bigger than either of you alone.

6.Stock up on meds and first aid for you and the baby. Maybe even some chicken soup in the freezer. FYI Daycare germs are evil. You will ALL get sick, even if you breastfeed and you will be too sick to be running errands to the drugstore. Daycare sick was the first time in our lives that we called people for help b/c we couldn't care for ourselves let alone the baby.

Also, if you are taking FMLA and returning to work, consider going back early to save a week or two for the sick time. My DD was sick 5 weeks out of the 10 weeks she was in daycare. I'm told that's unusually bad, so maybe you will get lucky, but knowing what I know now, I would've saved some FMLA for the daycare germs.

It might be a good idea to check with HR re: how much 'disability' time you have left. I found out I had no paid sick time left due to my maternity leave. I had to use all vacation days when I was sick or not get paid.

7.And if you can afford a nanny, get one. At least for the first year. Babies, imo, need a lot of one-on-one care and group daycare isn't the ideal environment until they're a bit older. Yes, it's expensive, but guess what? You no longer work for money, you work to pay for childcare--the sooner you accept this, the better. It's been a hard lesson for me and I've had a hard time wrapping my mind around it.

If you go the group care route, get a back up lined up so you only stay home the days your LO is truly sick and not just too sick for daycare (which is a different type of sick).

That's all for now. I know this isn't immediate postpartum stuff, but there is so much emphasis on the first 3 months, some of these bigger, longer term issues get short shrift. Your life has to assimilate an entirely new set of tasks and needs and you have to create an infrastructure to handle it from scratch.

Happy Momma to DD (almost 3) Fall Coleslaw -- Simple Italian Stuffed Peppers -- - Fall Toddler Activities.- We Made a Play Kitchen Selling gently used books on all topics here.
Violet2 is offline  
#29 of 61 Old 04-01-2008, 04:00 PM
 
the_lissa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
Posts: 13,248
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My babies never fit in newborn and barely in 0-3 month size.

Jam 7, Peanut Butter 5, and Bread 2.

the_lissa is offline  
#30 of 61 Old 04-01-2008, 05:02 PM
 
ltbaggywrinkle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 162
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
These are all fabulous tips--thanks so much! I was just thinking in the car on the way to work that Depends might be a good thing to have on hand--the next time my mom buys them for my grandma I'll ask her to take some out of the box for me. I also love the frozen maxi trick--wish I has thought of that when I've had bad UTIs!!

My sister has always written all of the important dates right on her calendar and then transferred them to the baby book later--I have one friend who had a calendar on her fridge just for the purpose of writing little notes about the baby's firsts etc.

Love the idea of writing the envelopes for the announcement ahead of time. I plan to pick out a boy announcement and a girl announcement and get them all laid out on the computer ahead of time so my DH can just add the actual date, weight, etc., print them out, and mail them.
ltbaggywrinkle is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off