My pregnancy with my first child was a time overfilled with joy but also with uncertainty. We were so excited to be expanding our family but at the same time, we were clueless about what to expect. I used to think of parents as people who have some naturally born expertise in having children but I realized quickly that no one has a clue what they are doing when having the first baby. But that is ok since parents usually end up figuring everything out. My husband and I would spend so many days (and nights) researching the best baby gear, going to different childbirth preparedness classes, and I read several books on pregnancy and having children. However, we all know that theory and practice do not always match. While being pregnant, I would envision some peaceful scenario of me snuggling peacefully with my little sunshine, exclusively breastfeeding him, all while simultaneously getting back in shape in a heartbeat. But reality turned out to be quite different. A lot of things ended up not being as easy or natural as I thought I would. Here is a list of challenges you might come across and solutions to these challenges.
- Life in yoga pants
Before I had a child, I vouched that I would still want to look great as a mom. I saw a ton of pictures of bloggers and influencers looking absolutely stunning when taking their newborn home from the hospital and in the weeks after. Subsequently, I was planning on doing the same. However, it is easier said than done. In the first couple of weeks of having your first baby, you won’t have a lot of time to do anything for yourself. This applies to eating, showering, and even going to the bathroom. Needless to say, you won’t feel like putting on make-up or dressing up. As a matter of fact, as a new mom, you will find yourself wearing the most comfortable clothes sometimes for days at a time because you will mainly be spending time at home taking care of your little one. I was basically living in yoga pants for the first weeks after having my baby boy. Baby and Sunshine offers extremely comfortable yoga pants in all different colors as part of their subscription box. They are very high quality and also make a great shape. I also get a lot of compliments when I wear mine.
2. Breastfeeding may not come as natural as you thought it would
Exclusively breastfeeding was another expectation of mine that was crushed by reality. I thought it would come naturally and would be a piece of cake to breastfeed my child. However, I struggled with it a lot. A lot of factors came together that made it impossible for me to solely feed my child through this method. My baby didn’t latch correctly which I later found out was due to a lip-tie. Also, he had had high bilirubin levels which made me decide to supplement with formula. However, the supplementing lowered my milk supply. While this journey was disheartening, I still tried to breastfeed as much as I could for the first six months. What helped me a lot with the right feeding technique was the right nursing pillow and nursing bra. Baby and Sunshine offers awesome nursing pillows with baby head support and bras to make your nursing journey a lot more comfy. I also relied heavily on pumping since I already started working a month after giving birth. Having a pumping bra was such a lifesaver and timesaver at the same time. You get to multi-task and take care of things while the pump does its job. Baby and Sunshine has all sorts of nursing bras even a model where you can pump on one side while feeding your baby on the other side which helps tremendously in increasing your milk supply.
3. The mommy tummy
Like mentioned above, I looked at too many pics of public figures that looked quite amazing after giving birth that I had the unrealistic expectation that I would bounce back immediately after having my first baby. To my surprise, I still looked pregnant for the first couple of weeks after giving birth. As a matter of fact, it will actually take a while for the uterus and hence the belly to shrink back. Sometimes, it won’t shrink back at all and women keep having a visible lower belly pouch often referred to as the “mommy tummy.” One way to prevent this is to use a post-partum girdle. Baby and Sunshine has an awesome 3-piece belly binder for postpartum recovery that can help you prevent getting that mommy pouch and help shrink your uterus back. Once you are a few weeks postpartum, you can use their high-waist body shaper which will further help in shrinking your tummy. My son is two and still wear mine every day since it helps with a flatter stomach.
4. Buy useful things
I remember when I was pregnant, my husband and I would go to Target to buy a few things for the baby but almost 400 dollars later, we came home with a ton of fancy baby outfits. We just had to buy every single baby tuxedo and tiny businessman outfit we could get our hands on. And we committed an even bigger mistake: we bought all of these in newborn size. Obviously, we did not even take him out anywhere until he had his 8-week doctor appointment. All we really needed where comfortable baby clothes that can be changed easily due to spit-ups and diaper blow-outs. Needless to say, we only used the fancy outfits for pictures and he never wore some of them. Baby and Sunshine will make sure to send you not only useful clothing items for your baby but also very high-quality ones. You will find a lot of soft pajamas, onesies, and bodysuits made out of premium quality materials that are gentle to your baby’s skin.
5. Making baby feel comfortable and adjust to the “outside life”
There is a reason people call the first couple of months of a newborn baby the fourth trimester. At times, the transition from inside the womb to the outside world can be a bit rough on the little ones. That is why it is important to keep them extremely comfortable to adjust to their new environment. Swaddles are a great way to achieve this goal. They are meant to keep them snuggled, tight, and warm like they were inside mommy’s belly. Baby and Sunshine has some wonderful, soft swaddles for babies made out of premium materials such as bamboo, organic cotton, and wool. This will help your little one sleep better which of course, leads to mommy getting more sleep as well – and you will need all the sleep you can get during the newborn phase. Once they have outgrown their swaddles or they constantly try to break out of it, you can transition them to Baby and Sunshine’s comfy sleep sack. It keeps your little one extra warm and it is so ultra-soft that it makes them feel like they are sleeping on a cloud.
Mamas, if you are taking away only one thing from this article is to please choose comfort over looks during your challenging postpartum life. If I could do it all over again, I would worry less about how I look like after giving birth and cute outfits for the baby and more about being comfortable and bonding with the baby. Thankfully, Baby and Sunshine is here to support you in getting exactly what you and your little one need after childbirth. If you want more information on how they can help you with your hospital, please read this article. Other than that, please check out their website and have them worry about what you need. You stay healthy, mama, and enjoy your new bundle of joy!