How to Prepare for Baby's Arrival
My baby will be here in a month whether I'm ready or not. If you care, which I know you do, I'm not. I'm a little panicky, I guess. At the beginning of this pregnancy, it seemed like time was going by so slow and that we had all of the time in the world. Now, everything is speeding right by and we're afraid for a photo finish!!
I find myself running an ever growing list in my head of things that should get done and there's never enough time in the day. I'm doing things for the baby, for work, for my personal blog, for this blog, for friends and family... Things are getting moved aside or just placed on the back burner altogether. But I guess this is what motherhood is though, right? Finding the balance? Is there really ever a balance?
...Sorry, I was going into panic-mode.
Anyway, even with the long to do list, preparing for baby is the priority and what has been sucking up all of my time and limited brain power. (Pregnancy brain is a real thing guys. I was skeptical once, until my reading dropped down to a second grade level.) We're trying to get all of our ducks in a row with paperwork, family, organization, decisions... There's a lot to do when you're expecting to have and bring home a little person. Love and I have been putting in work for the past two or so weeks because it's crunch time! ...We assume it's crunch time. We think I might be early but we don't know anything about actually having a baby so there we're just playing it safe. I can suggest a few things that you may want to do when you're preparing for baby because I've just had to most of them.
5 Things to Do When Preparing for Baby
1. Stay calm.
First and formost, you need to stay calm and level headed. You can't really trust this advice from a panicky person right? Well despite that, even I know that calmer heads prevail in any situation. If I were to continue to stress about everything that needed to be done, absolutely nothing would get done. Instead, I breathe it out and prioritize. Right now, anything baby gets worked on first and I'll break down tasks from there. Keep your focus and whatever is meant to be finished will get finished.
2. Delivery Details.
Point, blank, period: you need a plan while preparing for baby. You need one large plan broken up into sub categories of plans. Do you know how you want to give birth? Do you know what you're taking to the hospital? Do you know who you want in the room when your legs are spread wide open and life is being pushed out of you? These are all things that you should work out because they may not seem like a big deal but they very much can be. When Love and I discussed who we wanted in the delivery room it ended up being an emotion-filled day for me. It's actually the reason behind the "Dealing with Being Stressed While Pregnant" post. I was concerned for my comfort and support, Love's wants and feelings of other's who might or might not have been involved... It was a lot for me to mentally work out but when we ended up on the same page, it was a huge relief and one less thing to worry about. You and your partner should have as much as possible worked out and in black in white way before it's time to push.
3. Maternity/Paternity Leave.
Paperwork: my least favorite thing to take care of. From the very beginning maternity leave and benefits have been a blur to me. Even being 1 month from giving birth, there's still somethings that I don't really get. I do know that there's necessary permissions and paperwork that crosses between the mother/father, company HR's and the doctor. As soon as you and your doctor decide on your leave date from work, put all documents into work. Don't wait until the last minute because you can't control. Also, do better than I did and talk with your HR representative about any questions you have.
4. Nursery and organization.
After having four baby showers (#blessed), we had a lot of things to put away. We also live in a one bedroom apartment where every crevice is occupied with mommy and daddy's crap. Mainly mommy's crap. Love and I had to come together and create a plan for organizing ours and baby's things but also for home renovations that needed to be handled. We chose to divide and conquer; I was responsible for getting everything necessary to hide the excess, he was responsible for the handy work and we both chose the essentials and decorations. Mom, you don't want to come home to a cluttered mess after bringing life into this world. Do yourself a favor and get these ducks in a row so you and baby can have a place to rest your heads.
You've had the baby, left the hospital, now what? This is a path I have yet to cross but it is something that's good to think about before hand. Mom's if you're expecting help in the middle of the night, let dad know. Because if dad is like Love, he'll assume you've got this because he doesn't have the breasts (I have intentions on breastfeeding), so there's no need for him to get up. If you've got it handled, good for you! But if you need help, which is okay and expected, speak up now before your sleep deprived brain speaks for you.
Preparing for baby can feel daunting and never ending because, I mean, are you really actually ever ready? Regardless, you can position yourself in a better and more comfortable situation if you have a plan to work with and everyone is on the same page.
What steps did you take to take while you were preparing for baby? Did you feel like you were racing the clock like us or were you cool, calm and collected?