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7 Things I wish I Knew After Giving Birth

Here is something a Bright Baby’s mom Anna has to share with us:

Pregnancy has a lot of wonderful things that come with it as well as challenges. I was so busy with keeping up with all the excitement of expecting our little one and all the changes my body is going through that I didn’t think much about what I would need after coming home from the hospital. Yes, I read about breastfeeding and newborn care but it just seemed too far away when I haven’t even met our little one yet.

So, my goal for this post is to share my experience with your after giving birth so you can hopefully be more prepared than I was during those first several days home with your bundle of joy.

    • Tip #1 Let everyone know that if they want to see the baby to give you at least 2-3 days to recover. You and your significant other would be tired for sure and you have other things to worry about besides entertaining visitors. Learn to say no – politely.
    • Tip #2Have your breastfeeding supplies available. Your milk may not come in for about 3 days post-partum up to 1 week but your little one will be getting his much needed colostrum and you need to be nursing right away. This means your nipples may become tender so taking care of them from day 1 is a must so that you don’t get an infection. I recommend having a good nipple cream handy (I like Mother’s Love) as well as gel pads (I like Ameda ComfortGel Hydrogel Pads). When your milk does come in, you need to have your breast pump ready so that you can relieve any engorgement right away. Not doing so could be very painful and uncomfortable.
    • Tip #3 Watch “Happiest Baby on the Block DVD,” by Dr. Harvey Karp. This one was originally created as a book but watching Dr. Karp perform the techniques will help you master the techniques faster. This one will help you and your baby sleep better and you would be able to calm your baby better.
    • Tip #4 Enlist the Help of Friends and Family – even if your spouse is at home, you both need all the help you can get during these first few days. If someone offers to help, take it! Even something as simple as bringing you dinner or watch the baby for an hour or two as you take a nap during the day is a blessing when you’re desperate for sleep and just want some “me” time.
    • Tip #5 Schedule your baby photography session ahead of time. My son was born at 10.2 lbs so it was only a matter of days before he stops looking like a newborn so I wanted to make sure we captured that moment. This was my top priority even though I was still in a little bit of pain. You only capture this moment once!

  • Tip #6 Read, Read, Read – I hate to say it because our lives are busy enough as it is. But, I promise you that if you read a few books on at least breastfeeding and how your newborn develops, your life would be so much easier. Here are my top recommended reading: The No-Cry Sleep Solution, The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding and The Wonder Weeks.
  • Tip #7 Don’t be afraid to reach out to other new moms. As a new mom, you have gazillion questions going through your mind. On top of that, you would want to talk to someone who understands what you just went through. It helps to get that all out and share your experiences and ask your questions with other new moms especially if you’re feeling overwhelmed or experiencing even mild post-partum depression.

It goes without saying (but I’ll say it anyway) to not feel guilty if all you want to do is take care of your little one and every thing else goes to the back burner for now. Our baby Lucas is now 4 months old and I’m glad that I’m spending a lot of time with him because he changes every day! There are things he used to do that my husband and I miss because he was either too cute or too funny when he was doing them. Time really does fly by quickly.

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