Nothing can fully prepare you for parenthood. It’s a roller coaster ride, and it’s different for everyone. Not only that, but it can also be difficult to convey the challenges and exhilaration of being a new mom, much of it coming from a combination of hormones, sleeplessness, and the knowledge that life has changed forever. However, there are things you can do to position yourself better for the wild ride of parenthood that’s ahead.
Get Your Finances in Order
Once the baby has arrived, you’ll be glad you did everything you could to simplify and streamline your finances. This should include looking at ways to reduce your spending. Find out about refinancing student loans with NaviRefi and see if it will save you money each month. Put your bills on autopay. Start a savings account for emergencies if you haven’t done so already.
Spend Quality Time Together
As you head into what will be one of the toughest but most rewarding periods in your relationship, you should try to spend some quality time with your partner because the weeks and months after the baby is born will be frantic. It’s not that the two of you will never have one-on-one time again, but you are moving into a significant new phase of life, and this is an opportunity to celebrate and cherish both what you are leaving behind and what is ahead. You may want to try to catch up with your friends as well for the same reason.
Prep Your House
This is about more than just buying one of the best baby strollers and painting a nursery. You should prepare for the time immediately after the baby’s birth. Batch cooking and freezing a lot of meals means you will always have something reasonably healthy to hand you can throw into the microwave if you need to. Be sure that they are things you can eat with one hand since you might have the baby in the other. Buy nonperishable items such as toilet paper, paper towels and diapers in bulk so that you don’t have to worry about replacing them all the time. Do some baby proofing. In addition, even if you plan to breast feed, be ready to turn to formula as a fallback or to supplement breast feeding. You don’t really need to baby proof the house just yet, but if you have the time, you can do this too.
Think about what people you may need or want around you after the baby is born. For some, having a family member, such as a mother or a sister, come and stay for a few days after the birth can be helpful. For others, this can feel intrusive. Talk to your partner about how you’ll divide tasks. Of all the planning that you can do ahead of time, this is perhaps the kind that is most likely to need revision because there is so much that is unpredictable at this stage. If you end up having an unplanned C-section, you may have a longer recovery period and might need more help in the first couple of weeks.