Pregnancy Discussions I Wish We Had
Hindsight is 20/20. Everything is so much clearer when you look back in time. I wish a girlfriend, my mother, or my doula had helped me to understand what questions to ask to have a better recovery and relationship with my partner. Here are the questions I wish, I had asked, and the pregnancy discussions I wish we had in pregnancy to have a better recovery and relationship.
We took classes: Birth classes, CPR classes, and hired a lactation consultant.
Social media and baby registries have us focus on the tools, the props, and the purchases. So we made lists and decorated our baby’s room. We talked about baby monitors, breast pumps, cribs, and strollers. Which car seat and where to place it in the car. The hospital bag that we never opened. The baby announcements that we mailed out 6 months late. The baby photographer and the photoshoot.
But we never talked about how to get enough sleep so we didn’t look exhausted in the newborn shoot. Let alone how to nap and a bedtime routine that worked for all three of us. We didn’t talk about who would get up with the baby and change the diaper.
We filled our freezer and friends helped with a meal train but we didn’t talk about the laundry, the dishes, or walking the dog. The mess in the kitchen bothered me but not him. The wet bathroom floor bothered him, but I forgot about it rushing through my shower to get to the crying baby.
Let alone plan for what would happen at the end of the day, after work. Downtime doesn’t exist in the same way at the same time anymore. I needed help when he got home. He needed transition time from work to home. I was jealous of him being able to see others at work and forget about the baby for a few hours a day. He was jealous of my time with the baby and disappointed at missing all the firsts: first food, first rollover, and the first steps.
We spoke about our family visiting but we didn’t prepare for the additional burdens of feeding and entertaining them. I wish we had discussed a code word for when the visit was going on too long. Or how to request them to help us with meals, house cleaning, or criticism.
Self-care was something we never had to schedule. Now we needed to schedule gym time, haircuts, massages, date nights, and babysitters. Much of the spontaneity in our lives disappeared. Scheduling took over. I wish I had asked others what they did and their success and failures. I wish I had these pregnancy discussions with my partner when we could have prepared better.