It can be a really daunting experience coming home from the hospital with a new baby. The first trip in the carseat is nerve wracking, you get home and then its “now what do I do with him or her?!”
They say the first six weeks are the worst, and when you survive those then you’ll start to see the light again!
Here are a few of our tips:
- First of all, don’t leave the hospital or birth unit until you are 100% comfortable with breastfeeding your baby. Ask for help.
- Try to have a few meals prepared beforehand in the freezer.
- Make sure that you have a good supply of meat, tins and pasta in the pantry.
- Make a paper sign for your front door which says something like “we are all taking a nap, please leave a note” and leave a pen handy.
- People will offer to help – TAKE THEM UP ON it!! Get them to hang and fold washing, vacuum, pick up a few supplies from the store.
- Ask people not to bring you baby gifts, but instead bring a cooked meal. This can be a godsend.
- Stay in your PJs as long as possible each day, particularly if your partner is home on leave. You will probably find that you get more offers of assistance if you are still wearing your PJs.
- In the first few weeks, sleep when your baby sleeps. Its easier to do this when you only have one baby. But go to bed early too.
- Take your phone off the hook when you nap
- Make sure that you eat three really good meals each day, and snack in between.
- Drink a glass of water every time that you breastfeed, as you do need to replace the fluid in order to make more milk.
- When you get up to do night feeds, keep lighting minimal and don’t put on the TV. Don’t over stimulate baby or yourself, and then it will be easier to get back to sleep.
- For the first six weeks, program yourself for the 4-5 hourly baby cycle.
- Nothing else matters, so don’t sweat the small stuff. A messy house and piles of laundry are not the end of the world.
- The most important thing is that you get to know your new baby