Are you a first time mom and having a tough time balancing life, baby, work, sleep and more? Well, you are not alone! Gabrielle Bogan, a Time Management Mentor, helps moms balance life AFTER baby. Gabby teaches new moms to create time in their day for everything from personal time to long term goals – all without taking time away from their new family. Gabby shares her advice with us on what expecting mothers can do BEFORE baby to make life easier for later.
15 months have passed since I became a mother for the first time and WOW, what an adventure! If there is one thing that I can tell you right off the bat, it is to take those baby books with a grain of salt because nothing comes close to preparing you for motherhood like actually going through it!
While you may not be able to fully prepare yourself mentally for the craziness that having a newborn brings, there are several tips you should do now to ease your mind on what’s to come:
Prepare your baby nursery early
My partner and I began prepping our son’s room way before his due date. This is really helpful because once you get into your third trimester, you won’t want to lift or move any more than you already have to. By starting early, it will also become clear on what you need to purchase, repair and allow time to react to any issues that might arise. Prepping our little one’s room ahead of time allowed us to better understand what was actually necessary and what items were a waste of money. FYI you only need one baby swing!
Take a birth preparation class
Every mother experiences birth in a different way, and we’ve all heard good and bad birthing stories that can get us scared and charged up. One of the best things I can suggest is to ease your birth-related fears and educate yourself on options available to make your birthing as comfortable of an experience as possible. There are a number of birth prep classes for you, your partner and more. I suggest searching on the website of the hospital you plan on delivering at. For example, if you plan on having your baby at UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital you can click here for their list of childbirth preparation class offerings.
Educate yourself on parenting styles
We all have ideas on how we desire to parent our children before he/she arrives. For example, a parent-centered approach creates a routine for feeding and sleeping. My partner and I knew before having our son that a routine would help us keep some semblance of a normal schedule, so we implemented a feeding routine as soon as he was born. This helped us immensely because we were able to schedule our own life around the feeding times. Plus, we were able to plan and prepare ahead on what to bring if we decided to head out with the baby. According to BabyCenter, “A parent-led schedule removes any guesswork. It can establish order and a rhythm to the day that can be soothing and reassuring to a baby, as well as to Mom, Dad, and caregivers.” I found this to be absolutely true, plus it was much easier to leave our son with a babysitter early on because we had a feeding schedule intact!
Go on a babymoon
I highly suggest planning a getaway with your partner, even if it’s only for a few days. This isn’t to say that you will never travel alone with your significant other again, but it may be a while and having one last hoorah before baby comes will give you years of memories to look back upon. Of course you will want to go somewhere within driving distance if you plan this trip towards the end of your pregnancy. We went at the beginning of my 3rd trimester, and lucky enough for us we lived within driving distance to a small beach-town in Mexico!
Last, but not least do not forget to breathe. You may have no clue what life will look like after baby, but that’s okay, nobody usually does. Simply take each day for what it is and enjoy the quiet time while it lasts!
Birthing a mini-me and becoming a mother is one of the biggest transitions you may ever go through in life, but with a little preparation and a realistic mindset you can break through any fears you may be feeling.
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