Things you really need to know when you’re having a baby
All right, fellas – most of you must have seen at least one film where someone was having a baby, so you know that what you really need to do right now is go boil some water. Quick, get on it!
Are the menfolk gone? Good. Now they’re out of the way, us girls can talk about what you really need to know when you’re expecting. We know, we know – you’ve heard most of it already. There are lots of books and websites out there that are full of advice for mums-to-be, and most of them are very good. And besides, we’re not here to repeat any of the things you’ve already heard; we’re not going to remind you to take your vitamins, bug you about baby furniture or scare you with birth stories. Instead, we’re going to give you some advice we think you’ll want to hear: when you’re having a baby you need to plan to do things for yourself. Life with a new baby brings some wonderful experiences, but it can be tiring and a bit stressful too. A study by the Queensland University of Technology reports that it’s normal to feel fatigued for up to 18 months after giving birth, so it’s vital that you start planning to put some time aside to rest and recuperate as well as scheduling in some regular ‘me’ time. We can’t tell you exactly what you’ll want to do – this is your time – but we can give you some things to think about and point you in the right direction to make finding the help that you need a little bit easier.
Many women find that getting together with other mums is helpful, and there are groups for pregnant women and new mothers all over Australia. Your local baby health clinic may be able to help you find one, and the Kidspot (www.kidspot.com.au/MothersGroup) and Mothersgroup (www.mothersgroup.com.au/) websites both offer Australia-wide searches to help you find a group near you.
If you can’t find a group you like, why not start your own? Mothersgroup (www.mothersgroup.com.au/) can help you start your own group. If you’d prefer to get your group out and about in the fresh air, check out the NSW Department of Sport and Recreation’s kit for setting up your own pram-walking group (www.dsr.nsw.gov.au/active/tips_pram.asp). As well as being a good way to have fun with other new mums, walking is a great, gentle way to get back in shape without the gym fees.
If what you’re really after is a little ‘me’ time, there’s nothing like a bit of pampering – so think about making time for a facial, massage, or even a new hairstyle. The Bub Hub offers a list of salons (www.bubhub.com.au/servicespampermum.php) with childcare services, so you can enjoy getting spoiled while they take care of your baby. Make sure you check out all the options – childcare may only be free at certain times of the week, so plan ahead to make sure you get the best deals. If you have private health insurance, you may even be covered for massage and other alternative therapies – check your policy to see if you can get pampered and claim a benefit for it. If you don’t have health cover, why not start saving for your post-baby spoiling now? Canstar Cannex (www.canstar.com.au/savings-accounts/) can help you find a high interest savings account that will help your pampering budget grow just as fast as your bump is, so you’ll be able to treat yourself guilt-free.
And finally, remember that not all of life’s little pleasures have a price tag. If you have relatives close by, see if they’d like to spend some time with their newest family member – they’ll probably enjoy it just as much as you’ll enjoy the time out it gives you!
Whatever you decide to do, the important thing is that it makes you happy. With all the things you’ll be doing to ensure that your baby is happy and healthy, it can sometimes feel as though there’s no space left in your life for you. But you really are the most important person in this equation, so make sure you get the breaks you deserve. Right – have the menfolk finished boiling that water yet? It’s time to put your feet up with a nice cup of tea!
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Make sure you get the latest money management advice - bookmark YFYM today!
Analaura Luna is an author, wealth adviser and founder of Your Family Your Money. Your Family Your Money’s goal is to simplify traditionally complex financial strategies, demystify financial jargon and debunk common financial myths, becoming every family’s first stop for financial advice, information and inspiration
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