Final preparations

Pregnancy | | Louise Broadbridge

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:

Make sure you know how to put up, put down, install and adjust your car seat and pushchair. These amazing transportation devices may have seemed easy when you trialled 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 together post-birth.

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? Planning the best route ahead of time can avoid last-minute arguments when the big day is finally here.

It may sound a little “1930s housewife” but batch cooking is a task that you and your partner can work on together. Freezing healthy meals over the next couple of weeks will be an absolute life-saver when feeding yourselves starts to fall lower and lower down the priority list. It can be easy to fall into the take-away trap but eating well is important for both you and your partner. Think about investing in a slow cooker. These are amazing for people with busy lives. Spending 10 minutes prepping a meal in the morning can have you feeling like a Domestic God / Goddess at 5pm when your slow cooker emits 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 one place. Having a feeding station is a 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! Having a changing mat, clean nappies, nappy bags and nappy cream in one place 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 fantastic Apps out there to help you connect with other new parents in your area. Do a little research now –you may even be able to arrange a coffee with someone else close-by who is in their last few weeks. Having a support network can be invaluable whenever 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 last month’s prescription. Make sure you have plenty of over-the-counter remedies such as paracetamol, ibuprofen and cough/cold mixtures. That way you won’t have 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 when you introduce your baby to their Grandparents.

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

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