Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Postpartum Provisions

I recently had a friend who is six months pregnant, ask me for advice for after baby arrives. Nothing can really prepare you for the realities of lack of sleep, or the amazing feeling that is staring at your newborn. But, in saying that, you can have some things close by which can help ease the transition. 

I remember searching Pinterest for a similar list before Sophie was born. And something I found amusing, is that I could tell where the writer was from, based on what was in her list. See, I always read "peri bottle" and "Tucks" on lists from writers in North America. I had no idea what these items were, but I bought them. After the delivery, I was chatting to the midwife about the postpartum period. I mentioned both products - and she said in all her time, she had never recommended them to anyone. So anyway, everyone is different. And comfort is the most important thing. I found the peri bottles very handy.

The conversation with my pal made me think about what I had on hand, what I didn't have, and what I would recommend for her to get. So I thought, why not write it all down! Now, some may seem like luxuries, or odd, but these are what I had and relied on for comfort in that new, exciting but challenging time. Cos, straight up, it was probably the hardest couple of weeks I recall. But for all that, having that super sweet, brand new, soft and squidgy, mewling little poppet is worth every tiring second. And more. Her little face looking up at me was like, well, nothing I can describe.

So, here is the list.. Enjoy!

Nursing tanks - soooo useful. I had a couple but asked Mum to grab me a couple more. I pretty much wore them every day. Oh and your boobs get giant - so size up!

Curtains - "but Sarah, what do you mean curtains? Isn't this about new babies?". Our house has no curtains in the front room, but technically the front room is the back room. So no-one can see in. Anyway, the reason is, you will walk around with your tah-tahs out all the time. Like ALL the time. I would forget and would Rob would have to remind me when people came around.

Coconut oil - oh the nipples. I hate to say it but they get kind of destroyed in the first few weeks. I tried some lanolin based creams but coconut oil was what really worked for me.

All the food - cos I ate, all the food. All the time. Mum made me sandwiches every few hours. Green smoothies helped move things in the belly along. And that means lots of nutrients for babe. Nuts and fresh fruit were good too. Easily accessible snacks for 3 am are important too.

Nursing nightgown - it's much easier to get them out with one of these! It makes your night feeds much swifter.

Maternity pads - everyone is different but it happens. You just gotta have a bunch. Better to have too many on hand. 

Booty box - A shelf or box in your bathroom/toilet with the pads, plus tucks, peri or spray bottle, wet wipes, and tissue paper. Look after it all. It has all been through quite a traumatic time.

Boppy - your arms get tired yo. Especially because newborns take so long to feed. And that's gonna be half of your day.

Chocolate - I ate a lot of chocolate. That is all. 

Breast pump - all my research into newborns and babies, and yet I never read about engorgement. I guess everyone is different, but man, I found it to be very painful. So, having the breast pump to relieve the pressure was the best thing I could have done. I had bought one because I planned to breast feed and pump if I could, but I appreciate not everyone buys them before baby comes. If you have a similar problem with engorgement pain, maybe buying a manual pump or renting one could work too. 

Ice packs - Yep. There's no hiding it, a day after the birth the shock of the whole event really hurts your body. And then you spend a lot of time sitting to feed. Look after yourself! Periodic ice packing can really help! I kept forgetting I had just had a baby, I would be like, man it hurts. And then its like, oh yeah. Baby.

Heat pack - again, I found this was a massive relief from engorgement pain. 

Caffeine - in any form. You just need it.

Support System - I do not know how people do it alone. Full respect ladies. I needed loved ones. Full stop.

A human sized nest - haha. What I mean by that, is have a comfy spot that you can eat in, nap in and feed in. I spent most of my day in a nest on the couch. It was much easier than moving around the house and it was good for resting. I had a big maternity pillow to sit on because that ass area is delicate ladies. I had Sophie's moses basket next to the sofa too. Convenience!

So yeah, these are what I would recommend. Do you have anything you agree with or something different you required? What is your advice ladies?!


  1. I would say you nailed it! Excellent list and excellent advice! Those first few weeks are so precious but so so hard physically!

    1. Thanks lady! I don't know how you did it with two other babes to look after - you are a champ!

  2. Love your list! The only thing I would add to it is burp cloths. One over my shoulder at all times was neccesary with my two!

    1. Thank you! And yes - all the burp cloths haha!

  3. I would add
    1) a big bottle of water beside the bed and anywhere that you'll be breastfeeding

    2) several chapsticks

    3) a good face and body moisturiser

    All this milk making sure dries you out!!

    1. It does huh?! I nearly added chapstick and totally forgot! Man I drank so much fluid - I guess I still do - I never figured it would take so much fluid (I don't know why I guess its obvious if you think about it) but I never realised!

  4. A super experienced mama of eight recommended to me to wash my boobs with coconut oil when in the hot shower, and massage/hand express them a bit for engorgement.....worked great!
    Also, as an American (haha), the Peri bottle saved my lady parts for those first couple of days peeing postpartum. Yikes.

    1. Yes - the coconut oil is so good! I hadn't thought about using it for engorgement - good idea! Haha yes, the Peri bottle was awesome!!


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