By Kelly Hubbard, Marketing Specialist
The first breath, the first look, the first touch. The experience of meeting your new baby for the first time is a magical, unexplainable feeling. Your only concerns are learning how to care for your newborn, healing, and not missing a moment of this new life you have created. Having a baby during a pandemic can unfortunately add a list of new worries for parents.
Although you cannot change the current situation, there are a few things to consider that might help ease all your new emotions.
- Be prepared. Hospitals have implemented cautious new policies to keep their patients and employees safe. Some of these could include, masks worn at all times, no visitors, and quick discharges. You might be tested for COVID-19 prior to delivery. Check with your local hospital to find out what they require. Also, ask if they offer any extra classes, tours, or lactation consultations virtually, so you are aware of the resources if you need them.
- Be mindful. Once you meet your new babe, do your best to be present. Try not to let your mind wander and worry about the outside world and what-ifs. You will remember these precious hours for the rest of your life, and they should be special.
- Stay home. Bringing a baby home is so exciting! Enjoy all the “extra” time you will get to spend one-on-one. Keeping baby safe is your top priority. Although this can feel isolating, know whom you can count on for a support system if you are feeling lonely. Video calls or hellos from a distance might be the magic spark that can keep you going.
- Online ordering. Many stores offer curbside pick-up or grocery pick-up. Check online for options and try to reduce exposure by avoiding large groups inside stores. If you do need to go anywhere for essentials, wear a mask. Some communities have grocery delivery options as well.
- Trust your gut. Only plan things you feel comfortable doing. If family is dying to meet your little one, and you approve, you make the rules. Decide if you want to only allow socially distant visits, or have hand sanitizer, masks, and gloves required.
- Focus on the positive. Writing in a journal or creating a list of things you are grateful for can help keep your mind at ease. Meditation or yoga can be calming too. These days will be challenging, but at least you have toilet paper!
- Get some fresh air. Take your baby on a short walk outside. If you do not have a stroller or a good place to walk, you could wear your baby with a carrier instead. Walk around your house, listen to the birds, and look for squirrels. The great outdoors can be peaceful and perhaps a mood booster.
- Sleep. Or not. The golden rule is always to sleep when your baby sleeps. If you feel the energy to skip a naptime, try a new recipe or an old favorite. Even if the house is a mess, good food will help you feel accomplished, and you get a delicious reward.
- Escape when necessary. Reading a book or watching a movie can take your mind away to a tropical island, or big sky mountains. In addition, listen to music that makes you happy. And dance. Dancing always makes me happy!
- Don’t forget about self-care. Pamper yourself by doing your nails, or even go crazy and take a shower!
The joys of having a baby looked quite a bit different a few months ago. While it can still be the most wonderful days of your life, you may need to reimagine your expectations and be a trailblazer of the new normal.