Guest Post: Newborn Tips

I came across Claire and her blog, BabbleOn, through her Handwriting is the New Black post and letter challenge. I have been hooked ever since. She is a wife, a mother, a lover of all things handwritten and is completely wonderful to read. I highly reccomend you follow her! Today, Claire is sharing advice she recieved when she first fell pregnant.

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Newborn Tips

When I was pregnant for the first time, I was a bit freaked out about giving birth and I
decided to ask all my friends who were mums with young kids, what was the one piece
of advice they could give me to make the delivery and days around it better. I got such a
mixed bag of comments, but listened to them all, if you are soon to be a new mum, or just
hoping for some extra tips, maybe some of these will help you.

1) The hospital bag for you. Do not pack your size ten jeans and tops, even if you are
small, your boobs may get very big, very quickly and too small clothes will do nothing
for you. Lash out on some new pjs, but you will most likely need a new pair for each day.
I did not listen to this advice, hence all my photos of Popps and me in the first few days I
am wearing my husbands t-shirts.

2) Pack ten times more maternity pads then you think you might need. One friend
suggested the Tena incontinence pads are best for the first three days, she was right.

3) Don’t stress about what you might deliver the baby in, go for the hospital gown, it is
comfy, longer than a t shirt, easy access to everything and you will never have to wash it.

4) Your baby has not read your birth plan and is not following the script.

5) If contractions are far apart and it looks like things may take awhile, try and relax with
a glass of wine…amazing, even my super overly priced ob suggested this to me while I
WAS in labour, he told me to go for a walk, have a nice dinner and wine and come back
in. Popps arrived 24 hours afterwards.

6) During labour contractions, remember to relax your chin, it is one of the areas you can
hold a lot of tension. This gave me no joy at all, but my other friend swears it helped her
to have a natural birth.

7) Your body is more powerful than you know. I was the type who was petrified of
giving birth, really totally out there did not want to do it, would have had a c-section if
they knocked you out totally, but they won’t unless it is a rare case of something or other.
Good women tried to encourage me to have faith in my body to be able to go through
the process of labour. It didn’t work much first time round as I didn’t believe in myself.
Second time round I did, I knew my body would pretty much go through the processes
and one way or another I would pop this baby out. It made a huge difference, a better
more positive attitude helped me to cope and lead to a much nicer birth.

8) Pack a really expensive body wash or soap to use after the baby arrives, for you
woman, not the baby! After labour, when you finally get a nice relaxing shower, enjoy it
with something more than a bar of velvet soap or hospital grade body wash. You will be
very glad you packed something luxurious at this time.

9) Breast feeding might hurt, that doesn’t mean you can’t do it and have someone buy
a big cabbage and put it in your fridge before you get home from hospital. It is one of
the crazy things in life, and god knows who figured this out, but cabbage leaves provide

much relief to watermelon sized boobs.

10) If your stitches are sore, far out, mine were, you need to put ice in the maternity pads.
At the hospital they have special packs (steal as many as you can for home) however if
you get home and find the lovely painkillers have worn off and you have no ice packs, fill
some cheapie rubber gloves with water, rubber bands around the bottom of each finger
and freeze, snap off the fingers as required.

So using these tips I managed to get my chicken shit, faint at the sight of blood, not good
with pain self through two labours. If I can do it, you can too. And yes, I went for pain
relief whenever it was offered, even though I am scared of needles normally, I am not
when in labour!

You don’t need to read any gory details of my births, because yours will be nothing
like mine, but do know that there is a wealth of support from the midwives or doctors,
partners and friends, everyone wants a healthy baby and mother and you will be able to
do whatever is needed to reach this goal. I know you can do it!

Dorky image of me, wearing husbands t-shirt, cos I didn’t pack anything I could fit into,
when Popps was one day old!

I was going to give you a picture of how ridiculously enormous my boobs got after the
birth of Immy, but I don’t want to freak you all out, some things are better left to the
cabbage leaves.

4 Comments

  1. Absolutely love numbers 4 and 5. So should have snuck a bottle of wine into hospital!

  2. I've only been to the labour ward once, but I reakon those tips are GOLD! You and brand new Immy look fantastic.

  3. Actually #6 is quite important. My mum was an antenatal physio and she would tell her antenatal classes about one of her patients who dislocated her TMJ (the joint where the jaw connects to the skull) by screaming so hard! And that doesn't sound like fun now does it?! xxx

  4. I want to add something constructive about the waters breaking, but I'm not sure what sort of practical advice to suggest. I just know mine broke overnight, so when I sat up first thing in the morning, there was a gush of water and I honestly didn't know whether I'd just wet myself or not. I rang the hospital and they told me to stick a pad in my undies and come on in. The midwife asks to see the pad, goes to pop it under the microscope to determine if it's my waters or just pee … but the pad was so absorbent she couldn't get anything out of it, and made a comment about how in these days of super absorbent pads, it was getting really problematic for midwives to judge whether women had wet themselves or their waters had broken.

    And then she shrugs and says – in front of both my mother and my sister – "I hate to say it, but you've probably wet yourself." My sister had to leave the room because she didn't want to laugh in front of me. Happily two seconds later when I stood up it became very evident that it was my waters that had broken.

    So … if you're unsure if your waters have just broken, perhaps put those drenched undies in a bag and take them in, so you don't need to hand over your super absorbent pad and have the midwife say you've probably wet yourself. With all the indignities that having babies pushes upon you, this is one less thing to worry about!

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