There is so much anxiousness welcoming your new baby into your home. In the mix of recovering physically from birth there is a lot of planning. You're setting up a special room or space for your baby, building cribs, having baby showers and more. There is a lot of preparation for baby. BUT what about mom and dad? How are you preparing for your arrival, especially as you start your breastfeeding journey?
As parents set up their space for the baby's arrival it's important to remember the many spaces the baby will be using, one of which is where mom and dad will spend most of her time in the first week after birth. We refer to this space as your NEST.
A NEST is where you will nurture your baby, breastfeed, cuddle, sleep and enjoy every moment you can. A well prepared NEST is so important because the first week can be a stressfull one. You will be breastfeeding on demand for an average of 8-12 times a day...that's every 2 hours! This takes a lot of mental strength for parents to power through this new feeding and sleeping pattern.
Here are some tips using all five senses to prepare your NEST:
1. Natural Light. A well lit space with natural light is important. Sunlight lifts your spirits and keeps you motivated. Setting up a space next to a window or in a room that is well lit can make all the difference in the first week. Of course make sure you have an option to block out light to sleep, like blackout curtains.
2. Comfort. Asthetics and textures can make a huge difference in a space. If you have the budget to get super comfy comforters and pillows go for it. However, a money saving tip is to get lots of low cost comforters and pillows to prepare your space to sleep and nurse. Kmart has great deals for inexpensive blankets. You want to feel like you're laying on a cloud.
NOTE: Remember safety first with your baby. Surrounding a baby with lots of pillows and blankets during sleep can harm your baby. That's why you should have a crib nearby or a baby box.
3. Relaxing scents. Lavender is a beautiful soft scent you can spray on your pillows or dab on your wrisk.Even a small well placed candle with your favorite soft scent can make your experience nursing relaxing.
4. Soft music. Your baby will be absorbing all the sounds around him/her. Mom and dad will also need some pleasant sounds during this time. Soft music can be anything from your favorite Cold Play song to the sounds of rain. Choose something that will calm you and lift your spirits.
5. Snacks and Water. Nursing moms on average need to consume 500 extra calories to accomodate your baby's demand for breast milk. Keeping healthy snacks, like fruits or nuts and a bottle of water on a night stand or table next to your NEST is super helpful.