Eight weeks and counting. But it could be six weeks or even ten. Still, at least we’re in the single digits. That’s when this new baby comes - at full force - to make his or her presence known. It’s not that I don’t like being pregnant. I actually do enjoy it. I am truly aware of the miracle inside of me – what it means to have a human growing within my own humanity. Even as I’m typing this, my belly is moving like ocean waves as the baby kicks and stretches within me. It is absolutely incredible.
But, there is something about the end of the third trimester. There is so much anticipation for labor and delivery, for who this new little one is going to be, for how my current two toddlers are going to be with him/her, and, for our surprise, if this baby is a boy or girl! Plus, nine months is a long time! I’m ready to have this baby on the outside rather than the inside.
It has been a different experience prepping for this baby other than our first two. As new parents, there is so much equipment and clothing to acquire. You find yourselves consumed by research for car seats, strollers, and high chairs. You also find that when baby comes, all-consuming love for both your partner and this new child takes over every inch of your heart. With the second baby, we didn’t need to acquire many additional items for the baby. Maybe an upgrade on few things and another dresser, but for the most part, we had everything needed for a new baby. As I’m sure all parents wonder if it will actually happen, our hearts grew exponentially when our daughter looked up at our eyes, surprising us by being a girl who came earlier than her guess date and with a much faster birth than our son. So, this third time around, we’re prepping for this baby in a much different way than I expected.
Blooma Prenatal Yoga Classes - I have attended many more prenatal yoga classes this third time around than either before. I discovered during my second pregnancy and labor/delivery, how much yoga helped strengthen and stretch my body during pregnancy and prepared me for labor. I learned how to breathe through uncomfortable (that turned to painful) labor as well as how to move my body to make room for baby. During my second labor in particular, I used many yoga positions and breathing techniques I learned in prenatal yoga classes. Prepping for this baby has meant trying to get to at least one prenatal class per week!
Rearranging/Simplifying – It might be because we live in state with long and dark winters, but for me, every spring brings a giant urge to declutter, deep clean, and simplify our home. So, with this baby due this spring, nesting makes this urge kick in even earlier! My poor husband seems to have a new piece of furniture to move, store, or sell every couple of days. And, my kids have a lot less knick-knacks around, but shhhhh, they haven’t noticed yet! I want this baby to have space both in our home, and in our hearts. As we rearrange and simplify our life, I see that we are rearranging and simplifying our hearts to make room for this new babe. How will this baby fit in our current life? What new parts of ourselves will we learn and discover with the presence of this addition to our family? We have to make room now, in order to be ready!
Making time for those who are here now - I have tried to be more diligent about making extra time for both my husband and each of our children. There will come a time in a handful of weeks where the majority of my time will be dedicated to little human who requires a lot of needs and attention. So, in these weeks leading up to his/her birth, I’m putting down my phone, pushing off cleaning chores, and waking early (while everyone is sleeping) to get work complete. This way I can spend more time during the day reading my daughter an extra book before nap, helping my son practice letters, and giving more undivided attention to my husband. These are ways I can love them here in the present, instead of being too focused on what is coming in the near future.
Gathering up postpartum goodies – Like I said before, there is not much that the baby will need once he/she comes that we do not already have or can borrow. Instead, I have been collecting a few new goodies for my own postpartum comfort and healing.
Navel Yoga Pants: Mama, doula, yogi, and Blooma-founder/extraordinaire, Sarah Longacre, launched a new brand of yoga pants (and community right along with it) to fit the physical and emotional changes that come with being a mom. My favorite part of them: the high-waist and detachable belly band for extra coverage and support. I cannot wait to live in these pants during those days cuddling my newborn.
Bath Salts: A dear family friend owns a holistic skincare and cleaning line out of Brooklyn, NY (Between You and The Moon). I am lucky enough to try a lot of their products, and this is one of my favorites! Those sitz baths postpartum, even if only for 10 minutes, have been huge lifesavers for my own physical and emotional healing.
Breastfeeding Tanks: For my last two babies, I have breastfed for a full year after they are born. I live in breastfeeding tanks. I have always bought cheap ones that work fine, but this time around, I’m really hoping for something nicer. Maybe even something that aren’t so ratty by the end of my breastfeeding run, they end up in the garbage. I’m still trying to figure out which is best – so if you have any suggestions, send them my way!
New Baby Clothes: I know that I said we really wouldn’t be buying anything new for the baby. However, with already having one boy and one girl, this baby really won’t be getting any new clothing over the course of his/her life – most will be hand-me-downs. In my head, means the new baby should get at least one or two new newborn sleepers.
As my family and I continue to prepare for the arrival of our new one, please know how each of you are in my thoughts (especially if I take class with you) as you prepare for your new ones as well!
Written by Shea Olson- Wife & Mama Trying to Make it All Work