I know a lot of you are still dreaming of becoming parents but it’s never too soon to prepare for what life will be like once you bring your child home. In what may very well be a frantic rush of emotion, putting together cribs, notifying family and preparing yourself for life with another member of the family, there are a few things you should consider.
- Who should welcome you home?
Are you adopting a newborn? Many families with newborns (adopted or not) try to limit the exposure of the newborn to other children (especially toddlers- who are prone to bring winter illnesses into the house). Make a plan now for who will be welcome and who should wait a few weeks to see the baby. Do you want your parents there but maybe your close friends to help out in another way? Many people will want to help you, so having a job for everyone will satisfy them until they can see the baby.
- How much time will you be taking off from work? If you have a spouse- will you both be taking maternity and paternity leave or will it just be one of you? Make sure you discuss this with EACH OTHER and are on the same page. Next, discuss with your employers about paid time off, maternity/paternity leave and when it will start. You won’t want anything unexpected interrupting your time with your new child!
- Will the room be ready or will you need time to set it up?If you are like us, you waited until that baby was in your arms before getting the room all ready. Which means having people on hand at the last minute to buy diapers, clothes (what size will your child be?), and put together the crib. Give out those jobs now!
- Prepare siblings! Most importantly- prepare siblings for the arrival of their sibling. If you are unsure of a situation, talk about having a sibling in general terms: One day mommy and daddy want to make sure you have a little brother or sister- what do you think of that? We are excited!. If you are adopting internationally and know the child who will be a part of your family, share their picture and allow the older sibling to be involved in putting their room together or gather toys for the new child. Don’t forget a small toy or book for the older sibling(s) when the child comes home, keep them feeling special and in the loop!
Do you have more tips? Add them below!