Since it’s fresh in my mind, and many of my friends are about to give birth, I’ll share the most valuable tips I’ve learned or received in the past few weeks.
For breastfeeding, I found Ina May’s Guide to Breastfeeding very helpful. I also took a class which I highly recommend.
The Baby Book– Besides having the cutest cover on the planet? Great tips about your baby!
FOR YOUR PRE-PARTUM KIT
Red raspberry leaf tea– known to strengthen and tone uterus thus reducing pushing time. I had a great labor and pushing experience (still painful though!), so maybe it’s this magical tea?
Birth music- We ended up listening to Over the Rhine over and over. Have something ready for labor that is relaxing for you.
Birth pool- We didn’t get around to using ours because things went too fast, but I was glad we had it.
Bean bag chair- I occasionally leaned on ours for support during contractions.
Clary sage oil– My midwife used this oil mixed with hot water and put it on my uterus during contractions.
The Business of Being Born– I watched this movie in early labor to get myself geared up!
Candles- After a certain point in labor, light really started to bother me. So, we had candles lit all over for light.
Peanut-butter banana smoothie- Not on purpose, but what I ate before going into labor and I wasn’t hungry for a long time after I gave birth.
A mantra- something you say to yourself to get you through natural childbirth. I said, “Relax and open up” over and over and over. I was able to relax and my cervix eventually opened up enough to let Ellie out!
FOR YOUR POST-PARTUM KIT
Refrigerated cabbage leaves- you’ll need these day 3 when your milk comes in
Ibuprofren- I took this everyday for about 10 days
New Mama Bottom Spray– You will love this! I forgot I had it until day 3. Amazing what a difference it makes!
Lavender oil- Not essential, but after about day 5 I liked to take nightly baths with this oil. It just helped alleviate some stress and calm me before bed
Oatmeal- I eat this every morning. It’s supposed to help your milk supply to be plentiful.
I hope these tips will be helpful for any of you having babies or post-partum times soon! Yay for sweet babies!
Any other mamas out there have tips to add to this list?