As I was talking with my most recent client, she brought up the the topic of the baby registry. She commented on the huge differences between what people and stores tell new moms they will need and what items are actually needed or get the most use after baby is born. “Had I known, we could have saved so much time without having to make stressful last minute runs to Target or orders on Amazon.com.”
That gave me an idea to compile a list of what I as a postpartum doula feel are the absolute must haves for every new parent. The list is long so I will break it into 2 parts. This second part includes items that will boost your adjustment and growth as a new parent.
- Snacks– Keep snacks that are easy to prepare (or buy!) and easy to eat, nearby. You may often find yourself with no energy or time to cook and only one hand to feed yourself. Pre-made baggies of fruit (fresh or dried) or nuts and granola bars make excellent quick and healthy snacks.
- Water bottle – Staying hydrated is crucial while recovering from pregnancy and childbirth AND for establishing breastfeeding. Keep a water bottle or a cup filled with water nearby for whenever thirst strikes – usually as your sitting down to nurse.
- Nourishing herbal tea – Herbal blends are popular postpartum for their gentle nutritive healing. Whether you choose a Mother’s Milk tea or your favorite tea blend, be sure to check with your care provide to ensure that the tea will not hinder your breast milk production.
- Journal– Record your thoughts or record your baby’s feeding habits. Either way writing is always a good way to give yourself a little self-care.
- Books/Movies/Etc.- Sometimes you just want to zone out to your favorite show or movie while breastfeeding. Have it ready.
- Small basket– preferably with at least 2 compartments and a handle. Store all of your essential items like quick snacks, nipple cream, diapers, wipes, journal, and your water bottle here and you have a portable nursing station.
- Contact Information – keep contact information for your primary care provider, OB, lactation consultant, and other care providers near by and preferably all in one place. This will make reaching out for support or help that much easier.