Pre-delivery Health Plan
After you've finished celebrating the good news, you need to understand your health insurance benefits and anticipate medical costs. It's a good idea to estimate the cost of prenatal care, labor and delivery and the cost of postpartum care.
Check your current health insurance policy and see what's covered. Make sure that any prenatal treatments, as well as delivery and post-natal exams, will be covered. Also look into the logistics of adding your baby to your health insurance plan. You will also want to be looking at healthcare professionals for your baby as they grow and develop. Do some research to learn the difference between what a family nurse practitioner is and the doctor you currently visit. Decide what is going to be best for your family and make plans accordingly.
Now is the time to set a budget for child care, extra food and diapers that will have an impact on your household expenses for years to come. Planning now will help you avoid being caught off guard later. You can start prepping now by buying diapers on sale, wipes, clothes in bigger sizes that will fit your baby as they grow, and formula. If you start buying a little here and there, you will be able to absorb the cost much more easily.
Preparing Your Body and Mind
Finding out you’re pregnant is one of the most exciting times of your life. And as with most things, planning ahead helps to ease any potential bumps in the pregnancy road to childbirth.
Being both mentally and physically ready for childbirth and parenting is a lot easier than you might think. If you aren't already physically active, now is the time to get the ball rolling. Exercising regularly not only preps your body to bounce back after delivery, but it's also a great stress reliever.
Meditation is another fantastic way to mentally prepare for the upcoming nine months and afterward. New moms and seasoned veterans alike are bound to feel overwhelmed at times. Knowing how to channel your energy positively now will help you manage stressful situations later more effectively.
If you already have children, then you're probably well aware that the freedom you had before is long gone. That's not to say that you can't go out and enjoy yourself, but for those who are pregnant for the first time, it can come as a shock. However, having children doesn't need to equate to a prison term of dirty diapers and a sink full of dishes.
The key is planning days off in advance. Every mom needs a day during the week where she can enjoy things she used to do before she had a baby. After you are fully recovered, make sure you incorporate downtime for yourself. Whether it's going to the movies or hitting the gym to sweat off the baby weight, having a plan mapped out before you give birth will ward off a lot of stress down the road.
Prioritization is Key
Becoming a parent is probably the most rewarding thing you will ever do. The time leading up to your bundle of joy's grand debut is one that should be cherished and enjoyable, not stress-fueled and overwhelming.
Make a list of things you need to get done each trimester; this will allow you to tackle a few things each week without getting too flustered. You can break up the less fun aspects of preparing for the baby's arrival with fun activities like saving cute nursery ideas on Pinterest and shopping for adorable little onesies.
As long as you focus on what truly matters — a safe pregnancy, smooth delivery and healthy baby — nearly any approach you take toward getting ready will be foolproof.