Fourth Trimester Essentials
The funny thing about becoming a parent is that you never really know what it’s like until you go through it yourself. Sure, you know you’ll be up in the night to feed the baby and you expect to have less sleep. People warn you about all that stuff but reality hits when it’s 2 am, your baby won’t go back to sleep, your breasts are engorged because you still need to pump, and you haven’t gotten a lick of sleep yet. I thought I’d put together a list of things that have kept me sane through my time at home alone with our baby girl so far!
Walks around the neighborhood
So far, our little girl doesn’t mind being put in the stroller. Usually she’ll fall asleep on our daily walk around the neighborhood. We both need the fresh air and the walking helps me get stronger as I am recovering from my surgery. It’s something I hope to keep up as long as I can because right now I’m making it a habit and I miss it if we have to skip a day.
Podcasts and Audiobooks
Ive started listening to podcasts again when I can! Usually I’ll listen when I’m pumping or when Rooney goes down for a little nap. My two favorites right now are Binge Mode and Gals on the Go. I’m a huge fan of Harry Potter and I love the way the hosts of Binge Mode summarize and break down key events from the books. It’s been fun to make some connections about the stories that I didn’t necessarily realize as I was reading them. Gals on the Go is recorded by two YouTube influencers, Danielle Carolan and Brooke Miccio. While they’re in college and I can’t relate to everything they say, it’s nice to listen to a podcast that is really just two girls chatting together. It makes me feel like I have a friend in the room with me and it’s lighthearted so I don’t feel like I have to give it my full attention to process it.
I polled Instagram about the best Apps for listening to Audiobooks and most people recommended Audible. I’m not sure how to connect it to our Amazon Prime account but I remembered I have the Cloud Library App through our local library system and I’ve started listening to Matilda by Roald Dahl with Rooney!
I wanted to be an Apple Music kind of person but Spotify does an amazing job at curating their playlists! Here are some new to me songs that I’ve been listening to this month with Rooney.
Having people bring me meals
Please, come hold my baby so I can eat hands free. Having family close by has been an absolute life saver! It makes me feel a little less lonely during the week and gives me the time I need to myself for a minute. I’m lucky that my sister, mom, and mother in law are able to fill in the gaps when Alex is at work and help out with the chores too. Since I’ve had to lay low and not over exert myself doing chores, it’s nice to have someone switch over the laundry or empty the dishwasher so I don’t have to bend over very much.
You know how on Pinterest there are a million pins about “meals to prepare before baby comes”? Make the meals. Take the time and just do it. I wish I did. Luckily, I’ve been able to spend an hour to throw together a few dump bags for the crockpot in the past few weeks. It makes evenings so much easier. I feel like our nighttime routine needs the most tweaking. Between taking a walk, feeding the baby, cooking, trying to feed ourselves, giving her a bath, and getting her in bed there’s just too much to squeeze into a couple of hours at night to cook a real meal. We were lucky to have my mom and mother in law bring over food for the first couple of weeks but I feel like I’m starting to get the hang of throwing together something quick by myself now. Every day is a step closer to our new normal.
Trips out the house
I thought I would be one of those moms that didn’t take their baby out of the house for months but that quickly changed when we had to go to the pediatrician for weight check ups every two days for two weeks! We got used to making sure she was fed and bringing an extra bottle just in case we needed it while we were out. We’ve learned to squeeze a lot into a three hour trip to lunch and the grocery store! Getting out has kept me from getting cabin fever and makes me feel like I’ll be able to do this on my own during the rest of my maternity leave once I get the go ahead from my OB!
Household, Groceries, and Beauty Supplies
Good nursing bras and a hands-free pumping bra, the Boba wrap (any kind of baby wearing carrier will do) , the Snuggle Me lounger, extra bottles and a good bottle brush for cleaning, bananas and protein bars, and iced coffee have been my absolute essentials. I use all of those items more than anything else for the baby!