The first few weeks after giving birth were nothing short of a challenge, but like the birth itself, it was not as bad as I thought it would be! Don’t get me wrong, getting a baby earth side is no easy task, but it’s absolutely worth every second of it! I wanted to share with you the things I found helpful for both myself and Amelia after giving birth and navigating the first few weeks of motherhood, in the hopes that it helps you too. And just a warning, this may be a little TMI, but someone has to talk about it!
Things YOU will need after birth:
• Pads. This is kind of an obvious one. But I didn’t realise how many you would need! I bought two packets of maternity pads, one I packed in my hospital bag and one I left at home. I ended up going through two packets in hospital alone and have since spent a small fortune on them! Stock up while they’re on sale!
• Wipes, for yourself. I ended up carting the babies wipes to and from the bathroom every time I would go. It’s much nicer cleaning yourself with a wipe rather than some toilet paper while everything is still sensitive and tender down there.
• Ural sachets. These were a life saver. And no one had told me I’d need them! It wasn’t until I had given birth and was heading back around to my room when my midwife gave me a few and told me to drink them over the next 24 hours. I didn’t notice that they were doing anything until I’d gotten home. I went to the toilet to do my business without a second thought and oh my goodness, the burning was intense! You can bet the next thing I did was go and buy some more Ural! Tastes awful but works wonders!
• Breast pads. Another obvious one! But they’ll be your best friend, especially when your milk first comes in. I’ve tried the “New Beginnings” ones and the “Tommee Tippee” ones; the New Beginnings brand are much comfier. Oh, and hot showers, they’ll be your best friend too to relieve those hard and engorged boobies!
• Panadol and Nurofen. Remember to have some ready for when you get back home! I forgot to restock the medicine box which meant that the first night at home was a long and painful one!
• A large bottle of water, snacks and frozen meals. Every breastfeeding mama’s must haves! Breast feeding makes you super thirsty, super hungry and super tired. So having a large bottle of water (I love my Lorna Jane bottle) and some snacks close by at all times makes feeding times a little easier. Also having some precooked meals in the freezer was a massive help. The last thing you’re going to want to do it cook a meal at the end of the day. We asked a few of our relatives instead of buying a gift to cook us a meal! It’s a sad time when they run out though.
I’m sure there are many more things you’ll need for yourself but these are the main things that helped me. Remember to take some time to look after yourself, it’s amazing how good a shower and fresh pair of pyjamas will make you feel or when you’re feeling up to it, get out in the fresh air for a walk!
Things the BABY will need after birth:
• Terry Towelling Nappies. Now I haven’t actually tried using these as a nappy – but, they are the best thing to have beside you while feeding. Or at anytime really! Perfect for cleaning up spews, leaking boobs and another other baby bodily fluids. I have one in every room of the house!
• Love To Dream Swaddles. I used these swaddles from the second night Amelia was born and I’ve found them to be great! So much easier to zip and unzip rather than using a swaddle to wrap your baby!
• Copper Pearl Swaddle Blanket. When I choose to wrap Amelia instead of using the LTD swaddle, the copper pearl ones are amazing! They are super stretchy and a good size too. You can get a nice tight wrap to stop your baby from wriggling out of it. Plus they have the cutest patterns and matching beanies.
• Ribbed Bodysuits. I got two of these from Cotton On and I so wish they still sold them! They are so thick and warm. I have found them much nicer than the standard cotton ones. Fingers crossed they bring them back!
• Dummies. Lots of them. I’ve been very lucky that Amelia has taken a dummy, but it was the fourth style I tried before she happily sucked away! And once I did find a style she liked (Avent Ultra Soft Soother) I bought 8 of them! Probably a bit over the top.
• White Noise Machine. This has been a great help with sleep time and getting Amelia to self settle. I purchased mine from Baby Bunting for around thirty dollars!
• The “Becoming Babywise” Book. I roughly followed the advice suggested in this book and Amelia slept through the night for the first time at 5 weeks. She’s nearly 8 weeks as I’m writing this and she’s sleeping through every night now. Enough said I think!
Once again, there are many more things a newborn needs but these are just some of the things that have helped make things a little easier for me. If you’re in the first few days or weeks with a newborn and you’re feeling like you have no idea what you’re doing and you’ve got a million questions in your head, don’t worry. We’ve all been there. It doesn’t take long before you become more confident and you forget what life was like before you had a baby. The first few weeks are full of ups & downs – remember to take it easy and be kind to yourself! If you’re a new mama like myself, I hope this has been helpful to you!
Thanks for reading,
Shona Mimi xx