Childbirth Preparation Tips
With the desire to be of help in this very significant stage of every woman’s parenting journey, I am sharing tips on childbirth preparations that I found useful when I was on the same boat four times!
1. Shop for baby things. Have a checklist of basic things that a baby would need after birth. Consider shower gifts and hand-me-downs in finalizing your shopping list. Also, knowing the gender of your baby would be advantageous in deciding for colors and motif of baby things that you would buy. Otherwise, neutral colors would be a safe choice. Preferably, make a list before you reach your 7th month and start shopping. If you prepare ahead, then you don’t need to rush. You can go back several times to the baby section of the department store to complete your list if this activity brings you joy. On-line shopping is also an option. But remember that when buying baby clothes, don’t buy too many of the same size for these clothes will be easily outgrown by your baby. The following link has a sample checklist that you can use and other pointers on baby needs.
2. Prepare your hospital bags. On the 7th month of your pregnancy, you can start preparing your hospital bags. Having them ready will spare you trouble in case of any emergency. The following link provides a checklist of things that your bag and your baby’s bag should contain. It also has a note on what not to bring if you intend to breastfeed your baby.
3. Decide your birthing option. To have an informed decision on this matter, you educate yourself through books, magazines, internet, medical practitioners and experienced mothers. Discuss the matter with your OB. For vaginal delivery with or without anesthesia, you may consider birth classes and this should be done several weeks before the due date. Coming up with a decision early on is therefore necessary.
4. Explore the birthing site. Choose the place where you want the birth to happen and take a tour. Familiarize yourself with the place and the procedures. Know where the emergency room is, the admitting section, the delivery room and the nursery. Inquire on the requirements for admission, the forms to be filled up, and the charges to be paid and so on. If you prefer your husband to be with you inside the delivery room, find out their policy on this. Also, if you are looking for a Mother-Baby friendly hospital that allows rooming-in of newborn babies and supports breastfeeding, now is the time to locate the right place for you.
5. Prepare yourself physically and emotionally. Towards the end of your pregnancy, you should be relaxed and rested to prepare your body on the physical demands of labor and child-rearing. Emotional preparedness is of equal importance. Enhanced emotional connection with your baby and visions of blissful living with him/her will help you go through this stage smoothly.
6. Manage domestic matters. Plan on sibling care if you have other children and stock up on easy-to-prepare food in you freezer. Make sure you have no backlogs in the laundry and the house is clean and tidy when the baby arrives. But remember that once the baby is at home and you don’t have any help, lowering your standard in cleanliness will reduce pressure on you and minimize stress triggers. If you are a working mom, this is the right time to arrange for child care that you will definitely need once you are ready to go back to work.
7. Start a hobby. While waiting for the big day, it might be advantageous to focus your attention on something that would require much concentration and less physical exertion. Examples are crochet, cross stitch, sketching, painting, scrapbooking, and the like. This will also help ease fears and anxiety.
Creative Baby Announcement
8. Choose your baby's name and decide on how to announce the great news. This is a fun part that could also alleviate the discomforts and impatience while waiting for the big day. My husband and I had many enjoyable discussions while trying to come up with our baby's name. It is also yours and your husband’s duty to announce the arrival of your bundle of joy so that he/she can be properly welcomed by your family and friends who are equally excited about the newest addition to your family. Examples of announcement ideas include a simple text message with the child’s photo, a card bearing your child’s foot prints, a mass offering, an envelope with tobacco stick for a baby boy and a chocolate bar for a baby girl, a photo or video of you child posted on the home page of your social network account and many more.
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