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Children bring lots of joy and excitement to the family. I remember when I had my children, I was filled with so much joy and excitement; when I look back, the memories still make me smile. Even though the birth of a newborn brings so much joy, it is important to prepare for a baby before they are born. It is important to prepare for a baby before his arrival. The arrival of a baby brings more happiness when the birth of the baby is planned for; with planning the couple finds it easier to transition into parenthood.
Preparing for the birth of the baby helps to reduce the stress that may come after delivery and prevent postpartum depression. Let me emphasise that preparing for a baby is beyond wanting a baby or planning a baby with your partner. You need to be prepared mentally, emotionally, spiritually, physically and financially for the baby.
Preparation should be done by both partners as this helps to reduce friction and anger after the baby is born. In this article, I have written things you can do to effectively plan for the birth of your cute angel.
Preparing for a baby Emotionally and Mentally
It is important to be mentally and emotionally prepared for the birth of the new addition to the family. The birth of a newborn takes a toll on the emotional and mental ability of the parent or caregiver. Here are some ways to mentally and emotionally prepare for a baby.
- Make plans with the baby in mind
A lot of times we all have plans for the future. We have specific ways we want to turn out therefore it is important to add the baby into your plans. Are you planning to get a new job or relocate or get a degree? Please make sure you add the baby to your plans. This helps you to have a clear head with the future in mind.
- Prepare for any unexpected situation
There is no foolproof plan; we sometimes find out that things may not eventually go according to our plans. This is why you have to prepare yourself emotionally and mentally to handle the situation to prevent a mental breakdown.
This includes having an open mind about how you want your baby to be born. The benefits of preparing your mind for unexpected situations cannot be overemphasized.
- Be Calm
Dear mom, please be calm and relaxed during pregnancy. It isn’t good for you or the baby when you worry. I know you have a lot of things to do and you’ve got a lot of fears but fear and anxiety are not a pregnant woman’s friends.
- Learn about Pregnancy and childbirth
While pregnant you need to learn as much as you can about the process of childbirth. A lot of women go into labour with fear and they can’t just seem to get it all together. You must learn about pregnancy and childbirth. You can do this with your partner if you have a supportive partner.
- Connect with other parents
It is important to connect with other parents to help you prepare your mind for things to expect. This is a learning process that helps emotionally. If possible, connect with a mother whose baby is six months older than yours. See this as building the foundation for your own experience.
- Don’t have unrealistic expectations of your baby
A lot of times moms tend to fault another mom’s upbringing. We tend to think we can do better training our babies; women sometimes tend to think their babies will be saints when they are born. Take those thoughts out of your mind! You can’t predict a baby a hundred per cent; a baby will always be a baby.
- Have a parenting discussion with your partner
I believe this discussion should have been done in our relationship. It is one of the important topics to discuss in a relationship before marriage. Discuss children’s upbringing, their perception of pregnancy, their choice of delivery, help after delivery etc. this will help you to know what to expect from your partner.
- Be in control of your mental health
Never allow yourself to be swayed by pregnancy hormones. Keep calm and have a positive attitude to pregnancy.
How to Financially prepare for a Baby
Babies are a source of joy but when there is no financial capacity or resources to carter for the baby; there is a strain on the relationship. This is why it is important to have financially prepared for the arrival of the baby. Here are some ways to plan financially
- Have a family budget with the new member in mind
It is necessary to adjust the family budget to accommodate the birth of a newborn. If this is done early, it will help the family to get accustomed to the budget which will make things easier.
- Set up a savings account for your baby
Try saving up for the newborn as soon as possible. I believe saving a token regularly over time will make it effortless. I remember a friend of mine who used to save in a piggy bank for the baby. She always did this to prepare for unforeseen financial circumstances when the baby is born.
- Plan how to spend your paternity/maternity leave
Many times we are excited about the leave period that we forget to plan ourselves and how we want things to go. During the leave period, money won’t be spent on a lot of things. This is a good time to save that money for when work resumes and you may need to spend more before you adjust to the new life.
Overlook what is not necessary.
- Decide to stick to your budget
Planning a budget is easier than sticking to the budget, we tend to sometimes want more than what we budgeted for. Make a conscious decision to stick to your budget without fail. This will help you to achieve your aim and keep your mind at peace.
- Why elaborate christening?
In the part of the world where I live, people spend a lot of money on christening their babies. It is called naming ceremony which is done seven or eight days after the birth of the baby. A lot of people spend so much money on this ceremony and they regret this later. Never do more than you can conveniently afford.
How to Physically Prepare for a Baby
There are lots of physical preparation that needs to be done before your bundle of joy arrives. Kindly try as much as you to start preparing early in your pregnancy.
- Prepare all baby gears
Start preparing all the things you need for your baby as soon as possible. I suggest you do this little by little; if this isn’t your first baby, you can do an inventory of the things you have and the things you need.
- Pack your hospital bag
You must get your hospital delivery bag ready before your due date. I advise you do this latest when you are eight months gone. This will help you to be well prepared with all you need. If you are in Nigeria, the hospital will give you a list of all you need to pack in your bag for both the baby and the mother.
- Prepare family, friends and help for after delivery
Prepare yourself for when you have delivered your baby. You must plan how you want things to be done after you’ve had your baby. New mums need as much help as they can get to prevent burnout.
- Stock household essentials
Make sure your stock household essentials as much as you can. I learnt this vital lesson when I had my second baby; it was really difficult getting by without some needed food items. Make sure you get all the essential household items ready before your due date.
- Prepare older siblings
If your baby has older siblings, try to prepare their minds for the new baby. Let them be part of your pregnancy and allow them to help in any way they can before the baby arrives.
- Be familiar with hospital, staff and birth options
You need to familiarise yourself with the hospital environment and staff. Doing this helps you feel at home and you are more comfortable in the hospital environment. Also, talk to your doctor about possible birth options available for you to choose from. Gather as much information as you can.
How to Spiritually Prepare for a Baby
The saying that the spiritual controls the physical is true. As Christian, we must always be spiritually alert and prepared. It is important to spiritually prepare for the birth of your baby, this should never be overlooked.
- Create a daily prayer plan
Commit to praying daily for your baby and yourself. Getting up early to pray is very difficult in pregnancy especially when you have a lot of things on your mind. I believe praying is an opportunity to express yourself and pour your heart into God. I have a 30-day prayer plan that can serve as a guide; you can view and download it here.
- Seek God for your child
Seek the face of God for your child; commit his future and everything about him to God. I believe you can seek God for guidance on how to raise this particular child and other things that may worry you. You can even seek God for a name for your little angel.
- Commit yourself to be a faithful steward of the child
Parenting is a full-time job. Knowing you are only a steward and you are accountable to God for how you raise your child is important.
- Be grateful
Let praise flow from your heart always. I know pregnancy can be stressful and emotionally draining but it’s important to have an attitude of praise and thanksgiving to God. Always keep in mind that a grateful heart always overcomes fear and anxiety.
Preparing for a baby can be overwhelming but it is important to keep a high spirit and be optimistic. I believe with these tips it will be easier to prepare for the birth of your baby.