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So you’re having a baby? Congratulations! If you are getting close to your due date and have never gone through childbirth before, then you might be feeling some stress about what to expect after the baby is born. This is totally understandable. While the process of bringing a wee one into the world is one of the greatest experiences on this planet, it can be a time of anxiety and replete with unsettling unknowns. Thinking about the million things to do and preparing before giving birth doesn’t help anxiety levels either. Thankfully, there are a few prep tips to help reduce stress and put you more at ease when your bundle of joy comes into the world and into your home.

Prepare the Home: Babies are full of surprises. That’s why if you’re a new mom, your best step for successfully introducing your baby into your new life together is to prepare your home. Start setting up your nursery (or baby area) about six weeks before your anticipated date of delivery.  You’ve probably already thought about installing the basics, such as a crib with a mattress, a changing station, and maybe even a rocker in which to sit and nurse your newborn.  In addition, think about hanging blackout curtains which can be a godsend to reduce light and noise in your baby’s sleeping area. You might also consider setting up a baby monitor, especially if you’re a new mom.  A video baby monitor can offer a lot of peace of mind so you can keep a close eye on your new baby.

 

Get Properly Stocked: Babies need a lot of stuff to keep them clean, dry, and cozy. You’ve likely been stocking up on the priorities such as diapers and baby wipes. Also, keep about 1-2 week’s supply of clean onesies on hand as well as swaddling blankets. Make sure you have plenty of burpees and nappies too.  Whether breastfeeding or using a formula, check to be sure you have all the nursing supplies you need so you’re not stressed out during feeding time for your baby.  It’s a good idea to have all of these supplies available in multiple areas of the house too. If you live in a multi-level home, have a stash of the essential baby items upstairs and downstairs.  This will keep you prepared for anything no matter where you are in the home.

Have a Party: This may seem like an unusual way to prepare for your newborn, but having a pre-celebration or a gender reveal party is a great way to relax, enjoy and embrace the miracle you are bringing into the world.  Recruit friends and family to pitch a party that makes a statement to welcome your baby properly. It can be as simple as a picnic with pals while swapping mom stories over tea. Or, you can have a magical fanfare with princess pink smoke bombs for a girl or blue confetti showering the scene if you’re expecting a new boy.  Whether you go grand or make it simple, you may be surprised how a party can help break the tension of being a new mother and allow you to enjoy the beautiful process of having your first baby.  

Have a Support Group: In the early days of human life, the whole tribe got together to help care for a newborn. This is as important today as it was for our ancestors. Establishing a support group with friends and family members you trust is essential to keeping you calm and on top of caring for your new baby.  Keep these peeps close and well-informed about your status.  Have them on your speed dial so they can pop in at a moment’s notice in case you’re struggling.  Knowing you can rely on outside help can be a huge blessing for you and your child’s safety and sanity.

Plan Time for You:  One thing is for sure, you can count on spending endless hours with your baby once you bring him or her home.  Pre-planning for your tiny one will reduce a lot of pressure. However, it’s important to plan some downtime for yourself in advance too. Being constantly consumed with the well-being of your child can wear you down and have a negative impact on your attitude and your health. That’s why new moms need to take care to ensure the receipt of proper rest and relaxation after the arrival of a newborn.

Let’s face it, your first baby can be a daunting prospect. But you can reduce feeling overwhelmed or stressed out by following these simple preparations for your newborn. The more you plan ahead, the better off you and your new child will be in the long run.  Also, planning will help you savor and enjoy the time with your newborn, which is what being a new mom is all about!