10 Tips to Help You Prep for Postpartum
I have now gone through 2 postpartum journeys and have learned a few tricks that make the journey that much smoother for us sleep deprived mamas. Here we go:
Setup multiple change stations around the house. In the rooms you expect to spend the most time in, set up mini change stations so that you have easy access to everything you need. Here are some things you can include:
Diapers and wet wipes
Prepare each bathroom with self-care essentials. What you include will depend on the kind of delivery you had – I can only speak to a vaginal delivery
Peri bottle with water in it for easy cleaning after going to the bathroom (if you have stitches then this replaces the use of toilet paper for pee).
Either “Earth Mama” perineum spray or your own version made with witch hazel and lavender. This is great to spray on your perineum and anus region (in the case of hemorrhoids) after each bowel movement.
Keep Witch Hazel, Lavender and Epsom Salt in bathrooms that have a bath in it. These are great for helping create a Sitz Bath (https://www.healthline.com/health/sitz-bath)
Pads for post-delivery bleeding
If you are breastfeeding, then try to have snacks and water set up at each of your most common feeding areas. This will help ensure you are staying fueled and hydrated while feeding your little nugget. I like to have nuts and seeds on hand for snacking, as well as homemade muffins and energy bars/balls. By having them handy, you can just sit back, feed baby and relax. I share a bunch of recipes on this site that you can try, just click HERE to check them out;).
Download one of the various free apps out there for helping you track your newborn’s schedule around feeding, sleep, pee/poo, and more. They are super helpful because you don’t have to rely on your memory which has just been hit with an extra dose of baby brain, lol. I used “Glow Baby” for a while and then stopped once I got into my own rhythm with baby.
If you’re someone who has been diagnosed with Diastasis Recti then here are some of my favourite resources that helped me start on my recovery and strengthen my deep core muscles after giving birth to Baby A. If you want to do a self-assessment, directions on “how to” are included in the first link below. You can also search online “how to assess diastasis recti” and you’ll come across a ton of instructional videos.
In addition, I recommend seeing a pelvic physiotherapist as they specialize in pre/postpartum health;).
Nap nap nap! As a new mom you will no doubt experience sleep deprivation. Getting up throughout the night ain’t fun and you soon turn into a zombie! I strongly recommend that you get in at least one nap during the day with your baby. It doesn’t always work out, I myself choose to go for a run or bike instead sometimes, but it truly makes a difference. A nap should be something you put at the top of your priority list :)
Socialize. Whether you are looking to meet new moms or just get out of the house, take some time to search for local “mommy and me” groups or child programs. This way you can meet other moms or dads going through the same journey as you, talk about your experience and learn/share best practices - who knows, you may even come across someone who becomes a lifelong friend.
Halo versus standard swaddle. At the beginning with my first born, I was all about the tight swaddle…wrap here, fold there, tuck under, etc. A few months in my hubby and I learned about the HALO SleepSack and life got much easier – we didn’t have to swaddle anymore! The HALO SleepSack uses velcro to help you get that snug wrap around your baby, AND it gives you options as your baby grows: arms tucked in, arms out and free to move, etc. This has been super helpful at night when the last thing I want to do is use extra energy for anything at all, call me lazy lol. Oh, and as an added tip, get the onesies for night that have zippers, not buttons. Who wants to re-clip 20 buttons at night!
Prepare snacks and/or meals in advance. Pregnancy is tiring enough as it is, but knowing you have snacks and meals on hand is a life saver when you are exhausted from getting up multiple times at night with a newborn. It’s also helpful to have prepared food on hand to feed guests when they visit to meet your new addition – it is nice when guests bring food knowing that cooking is the last thing you want to do.
During your third trimester, ideally 2-4 weeks before your due date, create as many snacks and meals as your freezer will fit. Don’t be afraid to ask your partner or other family members to help out. My mom made a bunch of meals for me that I could freeze.
Here are some tips:
Freezer bags are great for muffins and energy bars because you can easily take a few out from the freezer at a time and keep them on the counter for easy access during the day. I typically like to take 3 out the night before so that they are good to eat the following day (for me and my toddler).
Check your local grocer or superstore for freezer-friendly containers that can be put directly into the oven.
Have Thank You cards on hand. Whether it’s one or ten guests that bring gifts when they visit, have Thank You cards on hand to send out to thank them for their generosity. You can buy blank Thank You cards or make your own if you have the time (I painted Baby A’s foot and did a footprint on the ones I sent out). Have envelopes and stamps on hand as well, and be sure to confirm your guest’s home address when they visit;)
Invest in a fabric wrap that you can use with baby early on. I use the Moby wrap. From being able to eat hands free, to working out in my living room with baby on board, the wrap has been great for letting me multitask easily with baby on board! If and when you get one, try out these exercises: 8 Exercise Circuit using Baby Wrap.
Whoa, so there you have it, as much as my brain will allow me to remember right now:). I’ll keep sharing more as it comes to me of course!
Are these helpful? Any new ones to add?
Until next time,