Final preparations

By Louise, The Honest Midwife

The weeks may have flown by or you may feel like time has literally stood still. Either way your baby will soon be making their way into the world and you may be starting to feel some last minute nerves and jitters. To help you feel a little calmer here are our top tips for enjoying your last few days or weeks before baby arrives and to reduce stress levels sky rocketing as you adapt to life with your little one!

Make sure you know how to put up, put down, install and adjust your car seat and push-chair. These amazing transportation devices seemed so easy when you trialed them in the showroom with an eager assistant by your side but in the cold light of day with a newborn baby by your side they can have us feeling like we are failing at the first hurdle. Spend an hour working out what goes where and how everything works. That way you’ll be a seasoned professional and will breeze through your first journey.

Do you and your partner know the best way to get to the hospital? Do you need to think about different routes depending on the traffic? You will be super pleased that you don’t need to have an argument about directions with your other half if you have planned your map in advance.

It may sound a little “1930s housewife” but it is a task that you and your partner can work on together. Batch cooking and freezing meals over the next couple of weeks will be an absolute life-saver when feeding yourself starts to fall lower and lower down the priority list. It can be really easy to fall into the take-away trap but eating well is really important for both you and your partner. Think about investing in a slow cooker. These are amazing for people with really busy lives. Spending 10 minutes in the beginning of the day can have you feeling like a Domestic God / Goddess at 5pm when you would otherwise have been wondering what on earth you were all going to eat and your kitchen is throwing out the amazing aromas of a home-cooked meal.

Irrelevant of how you are going to feed your baby, it is a good idea to have all you need in the one place. Having a feeding station is a really great idea. Muslin cloths near your comfy feeding chair are super handy however you’re feeding your baby; and a clean surface to keep your steriliser, breast pump, formula, bottles and any other paraphernalia for bottlefeeding will ensure everything is kept clean, tidy and accessible.

Another good station to have is for nappy changes! Sure as the sky is blue your little one is going to keep you busy keeping their little bottoms clean and dry. Having a changing mat, clean nappies, nappy bags, nappy cream will save you having to go upstairs every 5 minutes. It is also a good idea to keep a couple of clean baby outfits on hand too for the inevitable “Poonami” that will occur from time to time.

Get yourself App ready! There are some really good Apps out there to help you connect with other new parents in your area. Do a little research now - you never know you may even be able to arrange a coffee with someone else close-by that is in their last few weeks. Having a support network can be invaluable at any point you find yourself having a little wobble.

What does your medicine cabinet look like? If you take a monthly prescription for anything, it may be worth asking your GP if they will supply your prescription a little early or, even better, double up on your last months prescription. Also, make sure you have plenty of over the counter remedies such as paracetamol, ibuprofen and cough / cold mixtures. That way you won’t be needing to pop to the chemist late at night.

Is it likely you will have family come to stay? If so, why not get the guest room ready now. The last thing you want to be doing is changing beds and hoovering the spare room when you are feeding and changing your baby. Getting your house nice and organised now will save you getting stressed as you are introduction your baby to their Grandparents.

If the thought suddenly dawns on you that you have no idea how to bath a baby or change a nappy why not see if you can book onto a Practical Parenting class which will teach you everything you need to know in those first few weeks. Head over to Let’s Talk Birth and Baby where our very own Midwife runs highly recommended classes to get you ready!

And finally, chill! Enjoy these last few weeks as you look forward to meeting your little one!