You’ve had your baby, and soon after you’re sent home from the hospital without an instruction manual! Now what? Here’s how to survive the first 6 weeks with new baby.
Don’t pack away your Maternity Clothes
For as much as you can’t wait to throw out (or donate) your awful maternity clothes, you may still need them after birth. Look at it this way: It took about 40 weeks to grow a baby, so don’t expect to fit into your pre-pregnancy clothing overnight. It will take time but you will get there! If you happen to fit into your pre-pregnancy clothes immediately after birth, we can’t be friends!
Collect Takeout Menus
Even if your name is Julia Child, you will be in no mood, let alone have the time, to cook. Start collecting takeout menus from local restaurants that deliver, or make and freeze meals in advance.
Set up Automatic Bill Pay
No matter how organized you may be, unless dear husband/partner takes care of the financials, setting up automatic bill pay will yield one less thing to worry about. This way you can focus on baby and avoid late fees.
Before you had your baby, you never watched television, right? Prepare to watch the most television of your life. DVR comes in handy. So does Netflix. Don’t be surprised when you start watching the Disney channel and actually like it. You may even find yourself singing the jingles in the shower (when you finally get to take one).
Set one “big” goal every day
This will help you feel productive when you’re home all day in your pyjamas with your hair up and no makeup on. Even if it’s just making a pot of coffee, you’d be surprised how hard it is to do this otherwise simple task. Things that were once done without thinking, have now become challenging with a newborn in your arms. Tell yourself, “No matter what, today I am going to…” take a shower, put the dishes away, go for a walk in the park. Do one “big” thing every day, no matter what.
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Learn how to use a breast pump before baby arrives.
You may have your mind set on exclusively breastfeeding, but plans don’t always go as you want them to. Learn how to use a breast pump (many are fully covered by insurance so be sure to check in advance) before your little one arrives.
It’s a good idea to also have formula on hand. Your breast milk supply may not come in right away and you may find yourself supplementing. Your OB should send you home with some at one of your checkups, but you may also want to sign up on some of the major formula websites. They will send you coupons and free samples of formula (score!).
You may also consider having a couple bottles handy. Just a couple. Sometimes it takes time to find the right one for your baby. Sterilize in advance.
Set up a Meal train with Family & Friends
Ask a friend or relative to set up a meal train for you. Maybe they already set one up without you asking. This will eliminate the stressful question, “What’s for lunch?” or “What’s for dinner?” Not only is this a great way to evade cooking, but also an opportunity for friends and family to meet baby!
The first few weeks will be hard getting to the store. Ordering online until you are ready to drive or walk to the store will save you a headache or two. These days you can buy just about anything online. Even groceries. Take advantage.
Have Changing table Stocked
You won’t know how big your baby is until he or she is actually born. Be sure to have your changing table stocked and ready to go with newborn and size 1 diapers. You just never know. The same applies to clothing as lots of times, many newborns never wear newborn-sized clothing, so have some 0-3 month sizes in their wardrobe.