FIVE THINGS TO CONSIDER BEFORE YOU HAVE YOUR FIRST BABY
Having a baby is no easy task. As women we are challenged both physically and mentally with childbirth. And when it’s your first baby you add to that the stress of not knowing what to expect when you are expecting. Yes, yes, that is an age old saying and many baby books leverage it. In this article I seek to make some different points on the topic of pregnancy tips.
Now if you are like me you probably picked up a few baby books and have signed up for a few websites that track you through your pregnancy. But what I’m going to share are some things that I didn’t find in those books or on those sites.
FIVE PREGNANCY TIPS FOR FIRST TIME MOMS
When I was a first time mom I read many articles, baby books and people had lots of advice. But in reflecting back on the experience, I realized that there were many things I wish someone had shared with me before the baby arrived. So in this post I’ll discuss five things to consider before your first baby arrives.
EXERCISE FROM THE START OF THE PREGNANCY (WITHIN REASON)
I know. I know. They tell you to stay active. I found that it was easier said than done, especially in the first trimester. For baby number one I was so sick with morning sickness that I actually lost a little weight. As you can imagine, being nauseous doesn’t really make you want to exercise. In hind sight the cool, fresh outdoor air would have probably helped the nausea.
Initially I didn’t exercise in my first trimester because when I first found out I was pregnant I pushed it too hard at the gym and started bleeding, almost inducing a miscarriage. Then the morning sickness started. Then by the end of my first trimester it was just so hard to pick back up where I left off pre-pregnancy. And this lull in exercise just trickled on throughout my pregnancy. What was really hard was that the inactivity made the third trimester much harder than it needed to be. I had gained 40 lbs, which was within reason but it was still a lot of weight for my frame to carry. And I began to have high blood pressure the closer I got to my delivery.
So stay active ladies. Even if it’s just twenty minutes here or there, do it consistently.
PREP DAIRY FREE, LOW ACID, AND MILD FREEZER MEALS
Many articles and books tell you to plan ahead and prep some freezer meals before the baby arrives. What they don’t tell you is that there is a good chance that your baby will be gassy, be milk sensitive, have reflux, colic or even worse all of the above. And this should matter to you because if you are breastfeeding mom what you eat will have an effect on what your baby’s system processes.
So the tip here is to be extra mindful of the foods that you prep ahead of time. For me, I had to cut all cabbage family vegetables, beans, tomatoes, garlic and dairy from my diet. So needless to say the mac n’ cheese casserole with broccoli, bacon and chicken that I had in the freezer wasn’t ideal.
This is a quick list of foods to avoid in your pre-prepped dishes.
- Dairy – try an alternative to cow’s milk like goat, almond or soy
- Orange juice
- Beans and Lentils
- Spicy flavors
If you can avoid these ingredients ahead of time, maybe you can reduce some of the unnecessary crying and catch a few more winks.
REQUEST GIFT CARDS FOR A HOUSEKEEPING SERVICE
Now let’s talk about some things that are important post-partum. Once your baby arrives, even the smallest tasks will get pushed and sacrificed for the promise of a shower, sleep, diaper changes, etc. This includes the pots and pans that will pile up and the grime in the bathroom and your clothes and the sheets won’t get washed as often as you like.
Now if you have a mom or family member willing to stay with you after the baby comes , you are lucky. If not, please consider requesting a gift card or two for use with a housekeeping service.
When my husband and I were already tired and stressed, one of the worst things was to argue over a dirty house and who will do what. With both parties sleep deprived and stretched thin, these arguments can get supercharged.
There are a number of multi-location services like, Molly Maids, Maid Brigade, Merry Maids, etc that offer gift cards people can order and have mailed to you. Consider adding this request to your baby shower registry.
Be mindful that some of the above mentioned companies will change linens and do laundry but not all. But even if you can get help with a clean kitchen and bathrooms, then you can have a little more time to get some laundry done.
REQUEST OR BUY A SET OR TWO OF NURSING PAJAMAS FOR YOURSELF
With all the expenses that a new baby triggers, buying yourself new pajamas may seem like the last thing on your list but I promise you it’s worth it. You are going to live in pajamas and you will be feeding that baby all day and all night, literally. You might as well be comfortable and in something you feel good about while you do it.
There is a site that I liked while pregnant that has boomed. It’s called Pink Blush. They have a darling set of robes and a few sets of pajamas that are all reasonably priced.
ASK YOUR HUSBAND /SIGNIFICANT OTHER TO HANDLE MEDICAL AND INSURANCE BILLS POST BABY
Okay we have now reached the biggie. Our family has always been under my insurance. We are in a two earner household but somehow it has always worked out that we are on my insurance. Accordingly, I’ve always been the one to handle the medical bills.
After growing a little human for nine months, watching my body morph into a shape non-recognizable of my own, having surgery (my first born was c-section due to her being breech) and then experiencing postpartum depression, I can tell you that medical bills and insurance are the last things you need to have on your plate. Now I’m not saying that your significant other won’t be in shock getting accustomed to your new normal but I am telling you that they will not be dealing with the same rapidly changing hormones and possible postpartum issues which can include breastfeeding issue an even postpartum depression.
If your husband/significant other can help take this piece off of your plate that can help you focus on keeping yourself healthy mentally and physically.
As you can tell I did experience post-partum depression. I actually had it with both of my children. Look for a new blog soon on five tips for dealing with post-partum depression.
For now, I’d you’d like a quick check list of the five tips emailed to you please submit your name and email address below.