Friday, April 15, 2016

I'm home from the hospital with my new baby, now what?

Live like you're on vacation!

Live like you're on vacation or the first month after having a baby.

Limit the house work that you do.  You won't regret it.

Limit the laundry that you do, pretend that you're going to a hotel and live out of a suitcase.

Simplify meals. Eat off of paper plates.  Accept offers from people to bring you meals. Make dinner in the morning when you're less tired and put it in the crockpot. Get creative with some takeout. Try that  roasted chicken from the grocery store with some pre-made mashed potatoes and  salads from the deli. Take advantage of those grocery store short cuts.

Keep food ready to go. Keep a jug of smoothie or ready-made sandwich or pasta salad in the refrigerator. This way you can make sure you're eating well as you help your new baby eat well. You are going to be hungry.

Try to minimize entertainment activities and visitation for the first month. At one month old, your baby will still look very new and wonderful for people to come over and admire your baby and take pictures; after breast-feeding has been firmly established. For the visitors who absolutely must see your baby right away, try to limit those visits at least a few days apart. Post pictures and updates on Facebook. Leave a message on your front door that you and your baby are getting to know each other.

This is not the time for home projects like redoing your kitchen or new landscaping. You and your partner will want to take the time to learn to read your baby’s hunger and tired cues.  Your project has just arrived and you all need to get to know each other, bond, and enjoy this time.

Delay worrying about thank you cards. No one is holding their breath for thank you cards for all the wonderful gifts that you have been given, 6-8 weeks out is just fine.

Getting enough sleep is very important so nap when your baby is napping or have one of your close friends or relatives take your baby out for an hour so you can take a nap if you are unable to nap comfortably with your baby nearby.

Create a snack station with water and snacks, nursing supplies and burp cloths in a comfortable place where you can sit back, relax, snack, watch a movie, feed your baby, write in your journal, post on Facebook, read a great book or listen to audio books to keep both hands free for baby. 

It's totally fine to stay in your pajamas all day and rent movies and get your favorite take out and just relax and focus on breast-feeding and establishing a good breast-feeding connection with your baby. Think of it as a nesting time. A vacation from all the other parts of your life.

It's OK to stop your life for a month and focus on your new baby and breast-feeding.  Your baby will be a year old before you know it.

If nursing becomes a challenge, talk to your lactation consultant.  It’s normal to ask for help.

This is not the time to worry about sleep training.  Don’t worry about bad habits.  In the first 6 months, there are no bad sleep habits when you are meeting the needs of your baby.  

When nursing is a priority for you, give it the focus that is needed.  I wish you all the best.

Tracy Spackman 602-524-7610
Certified Gentle Sleep Coach

Gentle Sleep Coaching - Teaching you how to get your kids to sleep.

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