Let’s start at the beginning. You’re bringing your baby home from the hospital. He/she is strapped safely in the car seat and either dozing off immediately or crying from confusion. It’s ok, he/she will be just fine. Drive safe and stop by a coffee shop or something, you deserve it. Ok, so you either do that or not and you get home.
Do you have pets? Have they been around you the entire time you were pregnant?
When I brought my little muffin home my dog sniffed her and licked her. I told my dog not to lick her and she stopped. She sat down and watched me nurse the baby, it was so sweet. Anyways, do you have a plan on introducing your little one to your pets? Depending on the demeanor of your animal(s) you should make a plan. Try not to keep them at a distance for a long time though, that makes animals confused and naturally curious. If you were pregnant around them the whole time, your animal most likely knows what’s going on.
So you get in the house and your animals are doing good now. They’re probably excited like always because you’ve been gone for a couple days, but they’re under control. Now you are probably hungry or sleepy. Hopefully you have your swing and bassinet set up. If you get a bassinet that rolls or is light weight, that is nice cause you can bring it in every room.
Your baby is going to be so sleepy, he/she will sleep around 18 to 20 hours a day (this varies but that’s pretty close- my baby slept about 19 hours a day her first week). I set my swing up in my kitchen because that’s the heart of my home. I’m in there more than anywhere else. So I set her in her swing while I cooked, ate, drank coffee, etc. She loved the swing so much.
Don’t worry about bathing your baby the first day you get home. He/she was bathed at the hospital right?
It’s perfectly acceptable to wait a couple days to bathe him/her. I bathed my baby two days after I got home, if you can call it bathe. I used a wet wash cloth with a little bit of soap and ran it up and down her arms, legs, torso, and head; I then rinsed her off with another wet wash cloth. The umbilical cord is still there so they say not to fully emerge him/her yet. I didn’t emerge my baby in water until she was 2 weeks old.
You’re probably getting ten thousand phone calls of people wanting to come over. Do you want them to come over?
Make sure you and your partner have a plan in place in case you want the house to yourself. That first day home is exhausting and somewhat scary if you’re a first time mom. Having a ton of people pass around your baby and wanting to stick around for hours when your baby is crying for milk is not a comfortable situation for most moms. Kindly tell them that you and your baby need to nurse (if you are breastfeeding) and nap and that does the trick most of the time.
Did you have a visitor stop by without calling? Did that upset you?
Address that immediately, the first time they do it (or later if you were too nice the first time). Tell them you could have been or were sleeping, nursing, or bathing. Some people need to hear the examples before they understand why stopping by unannounced is unacceptable. If you’re the type of person that doesn’t mind that, I envy you. Nothing bothers me more than people that don’t call. Needless to say, that does not happen anymore!
Your baby is crying and you don’t know what’s wrong. Most of the time with newborns the answer is super simple. Do they have a dirty diaper? Are they hungry? Are they comfortable?
Most of the time his/her cry can be handled with ease and you’ll have a quiet content baby again. My baby would cry when we set her down sometimes. She liked being held and walked around. She’s definitely more independent now but it took months.
Are you going to co-sleep?
A lot of people don’t like admitting they co-sleep. I am one of those. My baby has slept with us from day one. Many pediatricians, family, and friends will tell you not to co-sleep. The truth of the matter is that it can be dangerous. If you suffocate your baby you’ll never forgive yourself. There are solutions to have a safer co-sleep arrangement though. They have baby beds like this that attach to your mattress.
I did not want to co-sleep and my plans were firmly against it while I was pregnant. I told myself I would not risk my little muffin’s safety. But my plans did not work out. We had her in a bassinet in our bedroom (they suggest to have the baby in your room in a bassinet until 4 – 6 months of age typically). I was exhausted, I had just had a c section and I was in so much pain. I laid down, and Mr. Blue Eyes did too. The baby slept for about an hour and woke up hungry. Mr. Blue Eyes got the baby out of the bassinet and brought her to me to feed. He put her back in her bassinet and she started wailing.
He then took her to the changing table and changed her diaper and brought her back.
He put her in her bassinett and I think she slept. She then woke up and Mr. Blue Eyes was out. He would not wake up. I could hardly move considering I’d just been cut open. It took me around 10 minutes to get out of bed. When I got her, I laid back down with her (painfully again), fed her, and she fell asleep.
I couldn’t get up again and Mr. Blue Eyes was out cold. We slept together, and have been sleeping together ever since. Mr. Blue Eyes was upset when he woke up but I informed him what happened and we tried for two more weeks to get her sleeping over night in her bassinet. It didn’t happen.
So hopefully your first day home will go as planned. You’ll most likely have family over helping you out or maybe not! Maybe you told everyone you want space and you’ll get ahold of them in a day or two. Either way, plan this out but be advised things may not go your way.
**I am not a doctor, nurse, midwife, or pediatrician so all of my suggestions are strictly based on my personal experience and research.