There’s lots of advice floating around about things you ‘need’ to get organised before you give birth. Four years ago I was sitting around at home, eating cake and knitting whilst waiting for mini mumbler to arrive. I had time to get myself super organised and it did bring me a sense of calm.
I’d batch cooked, bought and written all the birthday cards/presents for a few months, the nursery was perfectly decorated, the hospital bags (yes bags) were packed. we’d sit in the nursery on an evening trying to imagine how life would change. We were ready.
This time around I now have a four-year-old and two businesses to run so pretty much zero time. I have packed my bag though – more on that in the hospital bag blog!
Here’s my list of my other essential preparations that no one ever thinks about!
Shower curtain on your bed
One of my big nightmare scenarios in both my pregnancies has been my waters going in bed. My sister in law told me that when she was planning her homebirth she had a shower curtain on her mattress and put the fitted sheet on top. Cheap and effective! Keep it on after the birth too for a bit!
Dark coloured bed sheets
Sorry to be so blunt but you bleed a lot after the birth and you don’t really want to see what might leak out, dark sheets are the answer.
Big white/light coloured knickers
So the one time you do actually want to see exactly what is coming out is towards the end, you might have show or your waters might trickle and you won’t be 100% certain that you aren’t just wetting yourself! Wear light coloured knickers and get the big belly warming ones, trust me you won’t want to give them up.
Sanitary towels/maternity pads
Definitely, towards the end of your pregnancy you could wear normal thin sanitary pads during the day so if to do have a show or your waters start to go you can’t soak up your specimen and take it to the midwife if you aren’t sure. Yes, they are used to that and will ask you loads of questions about it so having it for them to see really helps!
The maternity pads need to be the thickest you can buy, they need to soak up a lot of blood (more than a heavy period) and you’ll welcome the extra cushioning!
My Expert Midwife Peri Prep your Bits
Perineal Massage. OK, so my friends and I found the thought of this absolutely hilarious when we were pregnant with our first children. Not so funny when 2/3 of us ended up with 3rd-degree tears. I’m not ashamed to say that my bits are being prepped this time around although it’s getting harder to reach! Read their how to blog and explore their other useful pregnancy blogs on their website here.
I wouldn’t do it without! You have lots of options, you can buy CDs, go to a group class or book private one to one sessions. You seriously need to consider this as an investment in the physical and mental health if you and your baby. Read my review of Blossom Hypnobirthing with Steph Knowles, where I explain why I love it so much.
To shave or not to shave?
My friend recently went for a pre-labour wax and had the most painful waxing experience if her life (beware everything is a lot more sensitive when you’re pregnant). There’s no way I’m going anywhere near that area with a razor when I can’t see! I’ll just have a bit of a trim after all birth is a bit messy. The midwife really doesn’t care what your bush looks like, and if they need to they’ll shave it for you, by which point all of your dignity will have gone and you really won’t care.