Thursday, May 19, 2011

Guest Post: How to Survive the First Night Home with Baby

Hi!! I’m Michelle, from Books ‘N Shoes! I’ve been reading Kami’s blog for about a year now, and am so excited to have been following her pregnancy journey! I can’t wait to see pictures of her ‘bug’!
I thought I’d compile a few tips that I wish I had at my fingertips when I brought home my beautiful boy, Marco (almost 1 year ago, OMG)!

If I had, my husband and I could have spared ourselves a bit of frustration.

1.As odd as it sounds, I would NOT recommend having anyone other than your partner at home with you that first night. My mother stayed with us, and I completely regret it. I was so worried that she wasn’t getting sleep, that it made the middle of the night screaming that much worse for us. If it’s uncomfortable having a person there any other time of the year, it’s going to be even less so now. Later on, when you need a break, definitely ask a friend or family member to stay for a night or two.
However – if you REALLY want someone else there, by all means – do so.  But, feel free to ask them to leave if you get too stressed by their presence.

2.Order pizza or Chinese food for dinner.  Seriously, get delivery and ENJOY IT.  Hospital food, no matter where you are, is not delicious. Passable, yes. Edible, yes. Tasty? No. NOM THAT DELICIOUS FOOD!!

3.Snag everything from the hospital that was even remotely awesome. Pads, water bottles, pain relief spray, diapers, wipes, those weird mesh-y underwear (LIFESAVERS!)...anything not nailed down or plugged in.  You will not want to go out for errands the first few days, and it can definitely be awkward to send your husband out to get you pads. Just sayin’, even after birth, there are limits to an embarrassment that I am willing to put Tim through.

4.Remember that your baby is going to be freaked out, and if he or she cries in the middle of the night, it’s not a reflection on you! The whole sleeping-through-the-night thing is not going to get hammered out for a while (likely, 3 months old). You and the baby WILL get through this!!

5.Leave the baby books on the shelf. Save yourself the agony of frantically flipping through pages at 2am like a mad woman, trying to figure out how to get baby to go to sleep.

6.I can’t forget to mention the wonders of the swaddle. Learn it, live it, love it. Swaddles keep baby SO comfy and warm.

Unwrapping Marco from his swaddle after the first nap at home!

Above all, make sure to relax, rest, and give lots of kisses to your little one! Leave Kami lots of good wishes, and your own tips for the first night! What helped YOU?

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  1. Great post! I'm taking notes for my first night home with baby next month ;)

  2. Really helpful stuff here! Even though I won't be pregnant for a few good years, I've definitely learnt a lot haha.

  3. This is such a great idea for a post! I'm filing it away for future reference...

  4. I totally second all of those tips!!!

  5. great advice i'll have to save this post for when i have kids.

  6. LOL! This cracked me up, because it was SO TRUE. The hospital thing? Our nurse packed our diaper bags full before we came home. They just throw it out anyway, so you're not helping anyone with anything. Although I will say, if you're embarrassed to ask your husband to buy you pads, may as well break him of it now. There ARE going to be times when he has to do the grocery shopping, and he WILL have to buy you pads. Period ;)

    There were a couple notes I wanted to add. First, all 3 of my kids hated the swaddle. They didn't like not being able to move their feet (and still pop them up on every available surface, even in their sleep!). So if baby's restless, untucking their feet can be a lifesaver. Or maybe my kids are just freaks.

    While nobody wants to hear this, some babies won't sleep through the night until 6-9 mos, esp if they're big babies and growth is still pretty rapid. My youngest got up for a 2 am bottle until he was 7 mos old. I thought I was going to kill myself before it was said and done, but I survived. More importantly, HE survived! He's 5 now, and still gets up in the middle of the night more often than not. These days, he just comes downstairs, grabs himself a glass of water and goes back to sleep on the couch. It's a little weird, but it works.

    Awesome post luv!