My #1 baby product….well it isn’t really a product, but I see it as CRUCIAL! 1. A Post Partum Doula 2. Breast pump 3. Baby sling
My #1 baby product pick isn’t a product at all but it is crucial nonetheless: a postpartum doula. The importance of planning for postpartum support can’t be emphasized enough. Instead of buying a dirty diaper storing device or trendy mini leather baby booties, ask friends to chip in for what is truly important during your baby shower or blessingway.
The first three weeks of mommy and infant bonding are crucial. Not only is dad/partner trying to find a role in the new family, mom is healing, getting the hang of breastfeeding, and oh yeah, trying to find a moment to sleep! Postpartum doulas exist to be of service to the new mom and family and help create an atmosphere of healing. She’s hands on and is a bounty of information.
It’s great to have family around during those first few weeks, but it’s also amazing to have someone around whose job is to just support you. She’s on your team and will respond (not argue with) your requests.
My #2 baby product pick has to be a breast pump. These devices are crucial in that they help you store milk in the event that it is needed later. If you’re planning on returning to work, try to get used to using a breast pump as soon as possible.
Don’t skimp on your breast pump. Buy the or rent the one that has the power to do what you need it to. I didn’t have the funds for the one I wanted until I went back to work and it ended up being a big flop. I wasn’t producing as much milk by then and would get anxious pre-pumping which only made it worse. My daughter Roma didn’t know how to use the bottle and would throw it instead of drink it. Totally stressful. Be prepared. Start early.
My 3rd baby product pick is a great sling or carrier. Wearing your new baby is of vital importance. Take the time to shop around and find a carrier that fits your body the best. Do this BEFORE the birth of your child if at all possible. Have fun with it and select colors that match your wardrobe and tastes. We would wear our daughter in the middle of the night if she was having problems sleeping. I would take walks every day wearing her the first 3 months. You can even wear, walk, and breastfeed at the same time!
Be sure to get instructions from the store you are purchasing on how to adjust and breastfeed while babywearing. You want to make sure both you and baby are comfortable, and that baby has enough airway to breathe. I had 3 different types that I used. I loved wearing Roma, actually miss it to be truthful! It was so special to be able to touch her soft head and smell her hair. We still felt connected. It was magical.
Alisa Donner is a MSW and LCSW, a mom, and Pregnancy Awareness Month’s Co-Founder