It's hard to believe it's already July 4th weekend! When quarantine first started, it felt like the days would never end and time stood still. I'm thankful that things are opening back up and we are able to do more, but time can slow back down now!
We've been crazy busy this week planning Mila's 1st birthday party next weekend. I can't believe she's almost 1! Another reason time needs to slow down!
Before logging off to enjoy the holiday weekend with family, I wanted to share #8 on my countdown of postpartum necessities. There is no doubt that none of this stuff is fun to buy, but it's necessary, and you will be glad you did!
High Waisted Underwear
It is HOT! We are experiencing some serious heat here in Indy and the humidity is outrageous as well. I went to a baby shower today for a dear friend, and she reminded me of how miserable I was last summer being pregnant in this heat. We both promised each other to not let ourselves get pregnant and have a summer baby again, LOL.
The next item on my postpartum countdown is a must have for when you get home from the hospital. While you are there, they will provide pads, mesh underwear, etc for you during your stay, but it's always good to be prepared for when you get home!
While you're in the hospital, they will give you similar underwear to use, especially when your bleeding is heavy. It's nice to have some of these when you get home in case your bleeding is still heavy. These can be thrown away after use so you don't have to worry about ruining your underwear with excessive bleeding. They aren't the most comfortable thing in the world, but they really come in handy as you're getting through those first few days home from the hospital!
The downside to postpartum is all of these items aren't the most exciting things to buy, but they are definitely a necessity. These items will help make your joyful time with a new baby even better!
xo-The Home Team Mama
Every person goes through their own recovery period after giving birth. Some people bounce right back and are back to normal in no time, some people have to heal from a c-section, and some people have to deal with healing in different capacities. During my time recovering from giving birth, there were some items that I COULD NOT live without! I am excited to start my countdown of my top 10 FAVORITE postpartum necessities!
Slip On Shoes
These shoes can serve a double purpose for before delivery and after you deliver. Shortly before I gave birth, I was so swollen I could barely get into any shoes other than flip flops. After delivery, I couldn't even get into my flip flops. If you opt for an epidural, your swelling can be even worse due to the fluid they give you. It will take a few days to get all the fluid off, so these shoes are a lifesaver! You want to make sure you get some that don't go between your toes. My feet and toes were so swollen that I couldn't get my feet into my flip flops and these were a lifesaver for me!
Whether you are close to giving birth or have just given birth and are struggling with swelling, these shoes are a perfect fix to make it through those rough days!
Stay tuned as I continue my countdown tomorrow!
xo-The Home Team Mama
Having a baby is an extremely exciting time and it can also be a time full of many different emotions. You may be nervous, scared, excited, emotional, the list goes on and on. One thing that can definitely make you feel more at ease through the whole process is having a doctor your trust.
I started with my OBGYN over 10 years ago. She has done all my annual exams, talked with me about different birth control options, and knows my medical history. Every time I met with her, she always made me feel at ease. Shortly after my wedding, I made an appointment to have my IUD removed so my husband and I could start trying to have a baby. When my doctor removed it, she said to call her in a few months and let her know how things are going. Little did she know, I would be calling her a short three weeks later with a positive pregnancy test! I really felt that she shared in my excitement with me and was genuinely happy to be my doctor as I was going through such an exciting time in my life. She was extremely thorough at all of my appointments and let me know what to expect each time. She also briefed me on all the other doctors I would see during my visits. Most offices do this now, but for your prenatal appointments, be prepared to see each doctor in the practice. That way, whenever you go into labor, you will at least have already met all the doctors in the practice.
At my 36 week appointment, we went through all the normal procedures and questions of each prenatal visit. After we were done, she said something that surprised me. She looked over at me and said, "I was thinking about you the other day." This caught me extremely off guard considering she has so many patients she sees on a regular basis, what would make her think about me at any time other than when she is with me? She went on to say that my due date was the 18th, and she happened to me on call the 15th, and wanted to know if I would be willing to be induced on the 14th so she could deliver my baby. She said that after she had been with me so long and she is nearing retirement, and she wanted to be part of this with me. I was so happy and relieved to know that my doctor WANTED to be part of my labor and delivery and made sure she scheduled it so she could be. I left my appointment so excited and thankful that she was my doctor.
My husband and I went in on the afternoon of July 14th and started the induction process. When I got to the hospital, I was not dilated at all. They started me on cytotec, which is to help soften your cervix and hopefully push you into labor without the use of pitocin. We did 4 rounds of cytotec and I finally made it to 2 centimeters. I was SO frustrated because I contracted constantly, I just never really made any progress. The morning of July 15, we started pitocin. My doctor had a very aggressive approach to pitocin and bumped it up often in hopes of getting me into a rhythm with contractions. Instead, the pitocin made my contractions more intense and constant. My doctor finally decided to give me an epidural so I could relax and after I got the epidural, she would break my water. I had the epidural and my water was broken by 1pm. Once your water is broken, they don't like to check you as often to prevent the risk of infection.
At 5:45, my nurse came back in to check me for dilation, and I had only made it to 3cm. My doctor came in to talk with me and said she just didn't think it was going to happen, but since baby was fine, she couldn't justify rushing me in for a c-section before she left for the night. She apologized over and over again that things didn't work out so she could deliver, but we would get through shift change and the next doctor would take me in for a c-section in a few hours. I immediately became overwhelmed with emotion. I was upset that my doctor and my nurse were leaving, and also started to get nervous about the fact that I knew I would have a baby in a few short hours.
My husband went to the waiting room to let our family know that I would be going in for a c-section in a few hours, and while he was gone my doctor came back into the room. She looked at me and said, "you know what, we're just gonna plow through this." Confused, I looked at her and said, "what do you mean?" She said she was going to stay and do my c-section before leaving for the night so we would be going into the OR in a few minutes.
Those "few minutes" were a complete whirlwind. I was signing papers, they were bumping up my epidural, nurses and doctors flooded my room giving directions and scrubbing my husband up for surgery. Next thing I knew, I was on my way to the OR with my nurse and my doctor for my c-section.
As my doctor was closing me up, I thanked her for staying and delivering my baby. She looked over the curtain at me and said, "I wanted to." I was so overwhelmed with joy and thankfulness that my doctor stayed beyond the time she was to work just so she could deliver my baby.
Whether you are looking for a new OBGYN or you have been with one for awhile now, it is important that your doctor makes you feel comfortable and that you trust them. Pregnancy along with labor and delivery is an extremely vulnerable time. i always joke with my friends, if you have any modesty left before you have a baby, it will be gone by the time you give birth. Having a doctor that you trust and feel comfortable with makes the process so much easier. I am currently in the market for a new doctor since mine is retiring, and I definitely have high expectations and qualities I'm looking for in my new doctor that my previous doctor had.
Having a doctor that you can trust and feel comfortable with can go a LONG way. I hope you all feel the same way about your doctor for the same experience!
xo-The Home Team Mama
If you've ever traveled with a baby, you know how it feels to need a vacation from your vacation! This was our first family vacation and let me tell you, my husband and I are EXHAUSTED! Don't get me wrong, we had a great time, but vacation with a baby is SO much different!
As we were planning for our trip, we decided it would be best if we waited until our daughter was ready for bed before leaving. That way, she would *hopefully* sleep through the night. This was the best decision we could've made. We had an 11 hour drive to South Carolina, and our daughter slept the entire way. We had to stop for gas twice, and she woke up briefly both times, looked around, and went right back to sleep. Traveling with a sleeping baby is MUCH easier than traveling through the day!
Our first day in South Carolina, it rained nearly all day, which actually worked out because it gave my husband and I a chance to catch up on some much needed sleep after driving all night. Our second day there, we ventured out for Mila's first trip to the beach. If your little one is still taking multiple naps a day, I highly recommend heading out shortly after they wake up from their first nap and lunch. This will give you a good amount of time at the beach before baby is ready for their second nap. One item you will want to make sure you have with you is a stroller or a wagon. It is difficult carrying everything you need for the beach, so having somewhere for your baby to ride on that haul from the car to the beach is super helpful. If you are still in the planning stages of your trip to the beach, I highly recommend these products to help make your time at the beach easier!
This tent was a lifesaver for us. It provided a spot in the shade for our little one and we were able to put some toys in there with her so she could play. It was also the perfect place for her to lay and have her bottle before we left!
If you've ever taken your little one out for a long period of time, you probably already have this hat. These hats are great for protecting baby's head, face, and neck from too much sun exposure while you are out!
If this is your first trip to the beach with your little one, don't be surprised if you aren't there long. Something new like this is LOTS of stimulation for babies and they can get tired even faster than normal. Don't forget to relax and enjoy the moment!
xo-The Home Team Mama
I just returned from spending a few days in Ohio with my best friend who just had a baby. She had a full term baby but still ended up spending a few days in the NICU. They have no family where they live, so I offered to go down for a few days to help her once her mom came home. I have to say, watching my best friend handle everything from labor and delivery to postpartum to her daughter being in the NICU with such grace has been inspiring. I prayed for her a lot as she told me she was going in to be induced. I prayed for her labor and delivery to be much smoother than mine. I prayed for a healthy and safe arrival for her baby girl. I prayed that she wouldn't struggle with postpartum the way I did. It's amazing how all of these things have a different affect on each person. While I severely struggled with postpartum anxiety, she has handled every curve ball thrown at her with ease. While you can't totally prepare yourself for postpartum, there are certain steps you can take to make the transition as smooth as possible!
As I entered the last few weeks of my pregnancy, I had no concerns that I wouldn't be able to have a vaginal delivery. I'm tall, my hips are wide, I thought I had everything working with me to be able to go into labor on my own and have a vaginal delivery, so I prepared for that. Here are ways I prepared for postpartum before I even delivered!
Have Conversations With Your Partner
I CANNOT stress this enough. Make sure your partner is aware of the time and rest you will need to heal from your delivery. Even if you plan to have a vaginal birth, still talk about the possibility of a c-section and prepare yourself for it. While I fully thought I would have a vaginal delivery, I ended up needing a c-section and I was not prepared for all that would entail, including the recovery once I was home. Have honest conversations about what you might need both physically and emotionally as you transition to being at home with your little one while recovering at the same time.
Spend Time With Your Partner And Baby Before Allowing Other Visitors
This is a big one for me. I had my baby at 6:45pm. Our whole family was in the waiting room waiting for us from my surgery. Once we were back in our room, we almost immediately started letting visitors in to see our daughter. Do not be afraid to tell people no or that you want to wait for visitors. You will never get those first few hours back with your little one. I don't feel like i totally enjoyed that first night with her because we had so many visitors in and out of the room wanting to hold her. I was so excited for my family to meet her, but because I had a c-section, I didn't have a whole lot of time with her before others came into the room. It is okay to be selfish and not allow people to visit right away. It is important that you get to spend that time with your baby and significant other before sharing that joy with others!
Have a Plan for Visitors
Oh my goodness, I cannot stress this one enough. Having a baby is emotional as it is. Everyone is so excited and is anxiously waiting to be able to come visit your new sweet bundle of joy. I highly recommend limiting visitors to immediate family only while in the hospital. Set times that you are willing to allow visitors and ask your family to respect the time you would like to spend alone as a family. Once you are home, continue to be strict about visitors. People will want to help with meals, come visit, etc. While that's great, visitors can be overwhelming. You are still settling at home and people are breaking your door down to try to visit. Talk with your partner beforehand about how you will allow extended family and friends to visit. Don't be afraid to set a time limit for visitors so they don't stay too long. Also don't be afraid to only allow a certain amount of people per day or week as you adjust. Everyone is so excited, but it is most important that you and your partner are having time to bond with your baby as well as get the most rest you possibly can!
You Are the Mama
One of the hardest parts about becoming a new mom is that everyone will want to give you all the advice they have about parenting and things that worked for them. Usually, this comes in good faith, but sometimes people can be pushy with their information or try to tell you how to do things when it comes to your baby. Always remember, YOU ARE THE MAMA. It doesn't matter if your baby is one week old, one day old, or one hour old, YOU know what's best for your baby. You are more than welcome to ask people for suggestions or advice, but DO NOT let people tell you what to do with your baby or how you should care for your baby. You've got this!
Having a baby is hard enough, but preparing for postpartum with these tips can help make the transition home a smooth one!
My family and I are heading to South Carolina tonight for a short vacation, so I'll be off the grid enjoying time with my family at the beach! When I return, I'll be sharing my tips for surviving the beach with a baby!
xo-The Home Team Mama
The heat we are experiencing in Indy this week reminds me of the dreaded heat we had last summer as I was nearing the end of my pregnancy. I. Was. Miserable. My husband was always wanting to do things outside and literally every single time I even stepped outside, my swelling got 100 times worse. Believe it or not, there are a few things you can do to help with swelling toward the end of your pregnancy!
Water helps flush your system throughout the day. I really struggled with drinking so much water, especially toward the end of my pregnancy, as it made me feel even more bloated than before. What I realized was that my swelling was actually much better and I noticed a huge difference when I drank plenty of water throughout the day. It can be difficult to be able to drink a lot of water throughout the day if you're still working, so I recommend getting a large water bottle to help eliminate refills all day! I use a one gallon water bottle to cut down on trips to the water fountain and it also helps me track how much water I drink each day!
Gallon Water Bottle
Elevate Your Feet
I REALLY struggled with swelling in my feet and ankles toward the end of my pregnancy. Any chance you get, prop your feet up. It doesn't have to be anything fancy either. I put a milk crate under my desk to put my feet on when I would sit at my desk and work. I am a special education teacher, so my job is a good mix of being up on my feet and also sitting at my desk to do paperwork. You can make this work with anything you have lying around the house, but taking the pressure off your feet will make a huge difference!
If you are nearing the end of your pregnancy with this heat, you know the struggle is real! It can be so nice to get outside, but then you immediately regret it because of how hot it is and how terrible your swelling is from just stepping outside. While outside, make sure you have an umbrella or stay in the shade. Keep your water with you at all times and again, keep those feet propped up!
Use A Fan
My best friend toward the end of my pregnancy was my handheld fan. If you are outside and it's hot, make sure you keep a small handheld fan with you just to use on your face, it will be a lifesaver! A good friend of mine got me this at my baby shower and I used it WAY more than I ever thought I would. It's also perfect to take to the hospital with you during labor! The one I have is below!
Pregnancy can be hard enough without battling the heat and swelling. As you near the end of your pregnancy, the swelling is inevitable, but these tips can help make it more manageable as you anxiously wait to meet your new little one! Stay cool!
xo-The Home Team Mama
I've had several friends have babies in the last few months, and it brings back so many memories of my own delivery, both good and bad. I was NOT prepared for postpartum life. I didn't read up on it like I should have. Of course I had heard of postpartum depression and postpartum anxiety, but I never dreamed it would happen to me. I've always wanted to be a mom and I had everything planned out exactly the way I wanted it to be. Everything was falling right into place. I had an extremely easy pregnancy with the exception of the summer heat making me miserable in the end.
I had a not so typical labor experience. I labored for 28 hours and only got to 3cm. I contracted constantly for 24 hours without making any progress. My babygirl was too big to fit and couldn't get down far enough to help me make any progress. It was eventually decided I would have a c-section.
I was absolutely miserable after giving birth. I wasn't able to get up for 12 hours after my surgery, and even when I did get up, I was extremely weak and needed help going to the bathroom, showering, getting dressed, you name it. My mom or my sister was able to be with me at all times to help my husband and it was a lifesaver for us. One of them could help me while the other helped the baby and it made everything so much smoother.
The morning we were set to be discharged from the hospital, I woke up and I was in a panic. I couldn't explain how I was feeling. I went from gushing over how perfect my baby was, to crying because I was in pain, to anger because they weren't discharging me fast enough. It was a vicious cycle. It was 6am and I called my mom and said I needed her. She dropped everything and was there within minutes. My husband was doing everything he could to keep me calm, and was honestly doing a great job himself, I just wanted both him and my mom to be with me. During my cycle of emotions, I remember asking myself, why am I feeling like this? I couldn't understand why I was filled with so many emotions, mostly negative, after I had just given birth to a perfect baby girl.
Unfortunately, even after getting out of the hospital, my anxiety grew worse. I had several meltdowns driving home from the hospital. What if she gets hungry? What if we get in a car wreck? But she's so perfect, why am I freaking out about this? My poor husband heard me say the same phrases over and over again, he really is a saint!
When we got home, my mom suggested that my husband and I take a nap and she would take care of the baby and get things settled at home. I. Couldn't. Sleep. I would sit up at least every 4-5 minutes freaking out either looking for my baby or running to check on her to make sure she was okay. Guess what? Every single time, she was perfectly fine. But that didn't stop me from becoming overwhelmed with anxiety.
I hated myself after I had my baby. I didn't understand why I was feeling this way. I had a PERFECT baby girl, a wonderful husband doing everything for me, and supportive family and friends checking on me. But I was still overcome with emotions I didn't know how to control.
Right before you have your baby, your body is full of hormones and they are at an all time high. Right after you give birth, your hormones drop to almost nothing. It is a drastic swing that is difficult for your body to handle. After a few weeks, your hormones start to level out. Some people struggle with this more than others. I did not do enough research on this before I gave birth myself and that is my biggest regret.
If you are currently pregnant, the best advice I can offer is to research hormone changes before and after birth and understand what your body will go through. If you have just given birth and you are struggling, CALL YOUR DOCTOR. It is the best thing I could have done for myself.
Postpartum is not something that is talked about in any of your prenatal classes. You may get a pamphlet about information, but it's nothing that anyone is willing to elaborate on. What I can tell you is that postpartum is REAL and it NEEDS to be talked about. If you need help, THAT IS OKAY. Find your circle of people that will be there for you and lean on them. It gets better! You've got this, Mama!
xo-The Home Team Mama
Happy Thursday! Is it just me, or does the week just fly by after a holiday? We had such great weather over the weekend and now we have had either rain or it's been too humid to do anything outside! I'm ready for some sunshine again so we can be at the pool!
I am so excited about the final 3 items on my countdown, I'm announcing them all TODAY! Here we go!
You guys. This book. If you are a first time mama, this is a MUST HAVE. Your body goes through SO many changes every single day during pregnancy and this book is great at keeping you updated with what's going on even when you can't feel anything! As a first time mama myself, I was obsessed with wanting to know what was going on with my little one. This book provided so much comfort for me as I went through my pregnancy!
If you are nearing the end of your pregnancy, you know how exhausted you are and how much everything just hurts. This maternity belt is AMAZING. It will take the weight of your belly to provide you extra comfort to get through those last few weeks that can be grueling. This belt was a lifesaver for me at the end dealing with heat and swelling. I highly recommend this belt to make it through the end of your pregnancy, especially if you are on your feet all the time!
Hi everyone! I am a working mama in Indianpolis, Indiana. I am a middle school special education teacher and basketball coach as well as wife to a social studies teacher/assistant athletic director and mama to our sweet baby girl, Mila! On this blog, I'll share helpful tips and tricks to navigate through pregnancy, labor and delivery, postpartum, newborn care, and balancing work and home life. Enjoy!