HOW TO BOOST YOUR CONFIDENCE AS A NEW PARENT

Congratulations on the upcoming arrival of your newborn! Bringing home a new baby can be both exciting and overwhelming, so it’s important to make sure that you’re as prepared as possible for the big day. Here are 10 tips for getting ready for bringing home a newborn:

  1. Stock up on supplies: Make sure that you have all the basics, like diapers, wipes, and formula (if needed). You’ll also need clothing, blankets, bottles, and a car seat for taking your baby home from the hospital. 
  2. Prepare your home: Build a few "nests", consider baby-proofing your house, switch to using "green" products, make a list of household chores to help visitors be most useful, and store easy-to-cook meals for the first few weeks (meal trains are great too!)!
  3. Build your knowledge and skills: Read books, attend classes, and talk to other parents. Knowing what to expect can help you become more confident in your abilities as a parent. 
  4. Build a supportive network: Having a group of people who you can turn to for advice and support is invaluable. Have a list of numbers and emails of people that you can call on for help. Whether it’s a close friend, hired support, or an online forum, having a place to go for help can make a huge difference. You’ll need all the support you can get!
  5. Prepare the nursery: Get the nursery ready with a safe sleeping space, dresser/closet, changing table, and storage. You can also add decorations, books and toys to make it feel like a cozy, inviting space. Be mindful of the room safety recommended 
  6. Take a class: Taking a childbirth or parenting class can help you feel more prepared for the big day. Take more than one class from different instructors to have a more well-rounded experience.
  7. Have a plan for visitors: Decide ahead of time how many visitors you’d like to have and for how long. Here's where that list of visitor chores comes in handy! Add to that list pantry/fridge items you like to have stocked.
  8. Find childcare: If you’re planning to go back to work, start looking for reliable childcare now. Daycares often have long wait-lists, and well-qualified, professional nannies are in very high demand. Your local childcare groups and nanny agencies are great starting points.
  9. Talk to your doctor: Ask your doctor any questions you may have about the labor and delivery process and what to expect in the weeks after. Talk to your personal therapist, consider pelvic-floor therapy, and lactation support. Don't forget about pediatrician appointments too! There are several visits those first few weeks. 
  10. Have fun: Take some time to relax and enjoy the special moments before your baby arrives! Baby-moons have become popular, Having a few moments each day to relax, do something you enjoy, or simply take a break from parenting can be extremely beneficial.

Being prepared for bringing home a newborn is key to having a positive experience. Use these tips to help you get ready for the big day and enjoy this special time with your little one!

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