Being a first time mom feels both wonderful and worrying at the same time.
Wonderful for the life growing inside you. The daydreams you have of snuggling that newborn, choosing the perfect name, buying those cute onesies and so much more.
Worrying if they are developing right, the pain of labor, cost of baby care, will you be able to breastfeed? who will help you take care of the baby? and so much more.
And that’s where PREPAREDNESS comes in. I consider myself an organized person (always with a checklist and post-it on hand) which is now a necessity as I have become forgetful. They call it mom brain and I claim that.
Anyway, this post is a helpful one. I hope that my lessons learned from being a first time mom and having gone through the experience of pregnancy and infant phase made me wiser and I want to share them to you.
Baby photo created by freepik – www.freepik.com
10 Must-Do Things for First Time Moms Before Labor
Labor is like a running a marathon . You will need all the energy and willpower to be able to reach the finish line and get your prize.
You need to be in your best shape because your body will go through the extremes to get the baby out and recover faster.
I remember my most challenge during labor was my shortness of breath during the actual pushing.
It’s supposed to last until 10 but I reached my limit on 7, sucking in air and so is my baby back to myself (hence his head is quite coned-shape his first few hours, which is mostly normal for normal deliveries).
Please do yourself a favor and do some cardio. Work that lungs out, expand it. There are many available pregnancy safe exercise videos on YouTube.
Walk far and often at your most comfortable phase. Stretch those muscles to help your baby descend in the right position for labor.
2. Prepare to Breastfeed
Per my doctor’s advise, I started taking moringa supplements on my 35th week.
I made sure to eat healthy. Fruits, vegetables, soupy foods and more water intake.
I get my juices in to get my milk out. The downside here is constant peeing which is a very serious matter to a pregnant woman.
3. Choose your Pediatrician
This is a tricky one. It took me many months to find “the one” for my baby but getting a headstart may pay off.
See, if you do not have one the hospital will assign you a default. Which you will know nothing about.
How about doing some research and ask you mom friends who theirs is. For sure, they have tried more than one and can give you an overview of how the pediatrician is.
4. Choose a birthing hospital
Take a hospital tour to see their facilities. Get an idea of how much travel time it will take from your house to the hospital. Ask for an estimate of their delivery packages, what paperworks are needed and inquire to your heart’s content.
And if you’ve chosen the best one, do yourself a favor and fill out forms in advance. So when the time comes they already have it on file and won’t bother you as much for details.
5. Ready your hospital bags
One bag each for:
- Cash and Documents
- Snacks / Food
As much as you can, organize and label each pack.
For example: One mini bag contains baby’s onesies, hats, mittens, booties and burp cloth.
Do this to avoid misplacements, rummaging in the bag for one little item, messing the whole bag!
Your documents and cash in one bag which your husband will secure.
6. Prepare your home
Aside from the nursery, your home should be newborn ready too. How? General cleaning to clear out dust.
Prepare your food ahead. You will have less time for home cooked meal hence the need to store freezer foods which can be a life saver to one exhausted mom.
Make sure to stock up on household basics such as tissues, alcohol, milk, bread, eggs and more.
There will be no time to get dressed and run on errands with a newborn as they need to be watched all the time. (Unless you have someone to do this for you).
7. Get your suppport system.
This one is important for yourself. As a new mom whose in postpartum, you will need all the help you can get.
First, your partner. To help you out in the hospital. To move around as you’re still weak from labor.
Your family. If they can babysit your house, cook some meals for the family. Look after the baby if you need to eat, bathe and rest.
Mom community. This is very helpful. May it be in person or online, these mothers understand you the most. As they themselves had been there or is going through the same thing.
Questions regarding your newborn or postpartum body is always welcome. There are no petty questions as you are all newbie and first timers.
If you don’t have one yet. Join one or more now!
8. Postpartum Kit
You’ve been thinking so much of baby and the labor. But what about after? How about you? your body? It has been through so much and it needs nurturing too.
Get your maternity pad / adult diaper and disposable underwear ready so you will have options. Do not limit yourself to what the hospital will provide.
Remind your husband of your first food and push gift. You earned that.
Even prep the props for sitz bath for you will love that.
Postpartum, find what is most comfortable and effective for your healing and get more of that.
9. Get into mommy mode.
Have a pep talk with yourself and your baby. They can understand you. Tell them your joys and worries.
Cherish this time of special bond. Sing to them, feel them inside you. For you will miss this blissful moments.
Prepare physically, mentally and emotionally. Be in the zone.
Fears for what’s ahead and labor is normal. You are a woman. Your body is meant to do this. Women all over the world have done this. If they can do it, so can you!
Baby photo created by freepik – www.freepik.com
I’m telling you, having a baby will transform you. Your perspective and whole being will change. You will love unconditionally to the point of servitude that only a mother can do.
Labor is just a pain to get your baby. As what we say to encourage anyone… No pain, no gain.
I assume you are reading this because you are expecting? Check out more of my pregnancy posts here:
So to you beautiful mama whose just counting a few weeks from now. Get yourself to focus and finish this must-do things before labor!
To the 2nd time mothers, Any other things I need to add here? Let me know in the comments below.
Thank you for reading my post. If you like what you read. Please share the knowledge to others.
I did an infographic on this topic and shared it to my social media accounts. Please check them out here
Photos credited to https://www.freepik.com/ and https://www.pexels.com/
Praying can do wonders to our worries. Being able to see and finally hold our baby is a life changing moment. Thanks for reading my post.
I made this especially for moms whose worried of the unknown. Being a first timer myself, posts such as these from moms who’d been there really helped a lot. This is my way of giving back. Thanks for reading my post.
Love your advice! Praying is something I wish I had done more intentionally before my first came. I had a difficult time praying for her because I just had a hard time picturing her and what it would be like to have her in my life. On top of that, I felt guilty that I wasn’t able to connect with her that way. That all changed when she finally came into the world!
Great list of prep items for first time moms. I read every article I could find before my first baby. It is such an exciting time but the unknown can be scary!
Great tips! I would suggest stocking up on food or snacks high in protein that you can eat one handed. I ended up snacking while breastfeeding because it makes you SO hungry, and sometimes there just isn’t time to sit down for a formal meal.
I love number 9! It’s not obvious but such a big part of preparing our minds and souls for what’s about to happen.
I wish I had seen this list in December! I became a mom in January this year and I was so clueless I had no idea what to do! Thank you so much for sharing 🙂
This is an amazing post! I had the first of my 2 children back in 2008, and I wish I was fortunate enough to have your post then. For me, the most essential part of readying for baby was the postpartum kit. I didn’t have one! I had no idea what I would need but I got wiser and wiser after each baby. I had my house cleaned beforehand and my hospital bag ready. The only thing I see missing from your list and this is not applicable to everyone…but it’s preparing your pets for the baby too. We had 2 dogs at the time, who also slept in our bed and on our couches. Start training them to not do that anymore because baby comes first. We let the dogs hang out in our nursery when we painted and decorated it. I let them sniff baby items so they could get accustomed to the scents.
So true! Hopefully people take these ideas and run! Lol we also have the same theme!