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As we enter a new season in life, we are preparing for the arrival of a new baby–very soon. Thomas and I are ecstatic to be welcoming a new kiddo and watch our oldest become a big sister. She is so curious and excited when she sees other babies, in anticipation for her own sibling.
Neither myself or my husband have younger siblings. We are both the babies of our families. That being said, we have really worked at preparing our preschooler to become a big sister.
The most important thing we can do to prepare for baby is ensure our little girl is ready, knowing that she is extremely loved and that the new addition doesn’t take her place but only grows our family. We are praying as we have small discussions with her on the daily.
Obviously, there are other things we are preparing as well–and I thought it helpful to make a small list for those of you preparing for baby too. Because believe me, our little girl came a little earlier than we expected and we were NOT ready in the least.
5 Tips on Preparing for Baby
1. Prepare the Essentials. Even if you think you will be pregnant all 40+ weeks, know that isn’t in your control. When our little girl arrived several weeks early we didn’t have our bags completely packed, much less premie/newborn clothing or enough diapers. Thankfully, we lived 5 minutes from the hospital! Pack your bags early, even if it means you switch out a few things as your due date approaches.
2. Ready YOUR Bedroom. If you’re a new parent you may not fully know that sleep is very rare for a new parent. I recommend that you invest in a bassinet to place beside your bed to make the first few months a little more bearable. (Studies also show that babies are safer if they sleep in the same room as their parents for the first few months. The FDA recommends for the first 6 months.)
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Also, prepare the essentials depending on your choice of care. For example, I am planning to breastfeed. I plan to make a small package of essentials to place beside my bed–knowing that I will be feeding a newborn every 2 hours, thus needing water and all the breastfeeding essentials.
3. Deep Clean. Nesting is a real thing, I promise. Taking the time to deep clean and organize your home should help make life a little easier when you return from the hospital. Don’t stress. Baby isn’t going to judge you based on if you remembered to vacuum before giving birth. If it’s in the budget consider hiring someone to help, as bending and lifting isn’t highly encouraged.
4. Line up your TEAM. Something we wish we would have done differently is make a strict guideline as to when we announced the birth of our child. Literally, the most stressful experience for a new mom is to have a hospital full of people right after you just gave birth, asking to hold your new baby… GAH!
Wait to make your announcement until AT LEAST after you’ve showered, rested and had the opportunity to bond with your baby. Trust me, you’ll be much more pleasant to be around and less stressed. Line up a few (2-3) people to know in the case of needing childcare, or other needs while you’re away. Write this all down in your birthing plan and communicate it to your significant other to ensure you’re on the same page. Obviously, this is personal preference so take it all with a grain of salt.
5. Thoughtfully Prepare. The best thing you can do beyond the physical is to prepare emotionally and spiritually. Take time to analyze your heart, relationship with your spouse, and time with the babies you may already have at home. You’re life is going to change (for the better) and taking time to love what you have will only strengthen that love as your heart expands.
I especially encourage you to do something nice with your spouse before giving birth–most marriages fall apart after the second child and year 5-7 of marriage! Do everything in your power to love your spouse well and communicate your expectations.
Obviously, all this advice is subject to your own beliefs, familial situation, and lifestyle. These are things I personally plan to implement and hope help manage the stress of a new baby this time around. For more advice and helpful tips be sure to follow along on Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook. In the meantime, I pray you would experience God’s richest blessings as you ready to welcome baby into this world.