I hope you got the chance to read my previous blog and enjoyed it enough to continue reading this one.
First off I would like to paint a picture of a what a babymoon is, at the core. You and your babe, rest, eat and enjoy the new experience…together. This may mean different things for everyone. However, it includes the following essentiasl.
Skin on skin, as much as you can. Dont even bother getting dressed from the waste up. Lie for hours with your little buddle curled up on your cheast. Smell them, hug them and start to recognize there cues. This not only encourages bonding but does wonders for breastfeeding.
Stay in. Don’t plan to go out. Dont plan big events and dont have a house full of people. This time only lasts so long and wasting it trying to please others preception of how things should go is just that, A WASTE. Comments such as “you need to get out, for you.” and “baby will get use your attention and you wont be able to always give it.” OR “Here let me take the baby so you can go do somthing.” Are comments I personally dislike. First off, if you feel the need to get out, go for it. But not because someone tells you you should. As for turning your baby into an attention seeking whore, this is ridiculous. By staying in and resting with your baby you are telling them you are there for them. You are enforcing your commitment to them and believe it or not creating a realationship that will make for a much more independent toddler. Lastly, your baby needs one person, maybe two. YOU and your partner. No other person needs to “give you a break, so you can go do somthing.” Again if you feel the need to get away for a period of time, go for it. But not because your told to. Also try to leave the babe with someone who will honour the biological process and provide skin on skin and gentle loving attention.
Another important aspect is who you invite to be a part of this time. This can be challanging. Especially if you discover that you dont want the company of friends and family. It may be difficult to express your wishes. But honestly, YOU DESERVE TO. Having a house of people to entertain or hand your baby off to is not doing anyone, any good. Not anyone important anyway. This time is about you, and your baby. It’ s true what they say, it does take a village to raise a child. Im afraid most people think this means releaving you of the labouress act of resting with your babe to do the dishes, or laundry or grocery shop. That is not what it means at all. It means, if they want to visit…THEY do the dishes, the laundry and grocery shopping. All the while you and your babe are getting the time to learn and grow together.
I have heard many different responces when I explain what a babymoon is and why its so important. Things like “Ya, wouldnt that be nice.” “Sure, but who takes care of the other kids” “That sounds boring” and “Theres no way Ill have time for that.” These responces are normal. I mean who do you think you are? As if you can acually take the time post birth to rest, relax, recharge and initiate biological nurturing. Your scheduel would not allow it and besides, your partner works all day, so who will be there when this, so-called blissfulness is suppose to take place?
Like I mentioned in my previous post a babymoon much like a honeymoon. How long do people plan for their honeymoons, how many questions do you ask before making descions? Do you just get married and head off into the sunset hoping for good weather, good food and good times? No, not usually. Usually you spend all the time you have before planning out everything. You make sure your bills are payed, you find childcare, you clean your house, you have someone else make you food. Unless you plan on soaking in the sun all day with your significant other, you prepar a detailed artinerary. Dont you think you and your babe deserve the same attention? Wouldnt it be nice? Plan for friends and family to take older kids on day trips. Save extra money to make up a treasure box of new toys, books and art supplies for when you are home alone with them all. Ask your partner to help premake meals or call me! As for boring, NO WAY. While your baby sleeps on your cheast you have many options to keep you occupied. Read a book, binge watch your favourite show, pick up an old hobby. Or, like myself, plan for the future. Dream big and utilize this time for the better. You have this time, it is yours to do with as you please. And you can have a restful, blissful postpartum. It just takes planning.
The following is a hand out that I have developed to hang on your fridge during the postpartum. Please feel free to copy and paste into a word document and print for this purpose.
Village Tasks Created By: The Doula Chef
For us to bond and heal and grow we thought we ought to let you know.
All of these things need to get done, and could be done by anyone.
So if you plan to stay a few, please choose something here to do…
- Caring for pets
- Entertaining siblings
- Watering plants
- Cooking a meal
- Cutting fruit and vegetables
- Making a jug of tea or flavoured water
- Organizing baby supplies
- Refilling anything that needs it, including water glasses
- Clearing some surfaces of clutter
- Wiping counters
- Vacuum/sweeping the floor
- Shopping, putting goods away
Lastly, a babymoon is best lived with planning. The most essential part of all. If you didnt get the time to plan and your finding yourself caught up in postpartum blahs instead of bliss. Here is my piece of advice, START NOW! Speak your truth, ask for help. If you feel like you have no time for resting, relaxing and rejoicing, find someone who will help you get some. Even an hour a day of uninturupted snuggles will make a difference. If you feel like the house will fall apart if you take time off to be with your new baby, LET IT. You will have time, eventually. Or better yet, ask for help! Call a friend or family member and tell them how you feel. Let them know you need more time to relax and heal from child birth. Ask if someone can make you a meal, draw you a bath or just be there in case somthing comes up. Dont try to be a hero, your only hurting yourself, and your precious new family.
For more handouts Created by The Doula Chef consider my 7 Services under $70 , one which include a package of handouts and planning materials.