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Question about maternity leave activities before baby arrives.(29 Posts)
I'm due to start maternity leave in two weeks when I'll be 36 weeks gone. Exciting times!
I've been planning out things to do whilst I wait for baby to arrive and had going to the cinema on the list. Now I'm wondering if that's such a good idea, considering things like my waters could go whilst I'm sat there and ruin the seat. Is that a reasonable concern or am I overthinking things?
Also, does anyone have any suggestions for things to do to stop me from going crazy whilst I wait? I'm the sort of person who can't sit still and always has stuff planned to keep me busy, so this is uncharted territory for me. Lie-ins and daily walks down the park are on the agenda so far.
Things I Did While Waiting for Baby No 1 to arrive:
See friends, drink lots of tea/cake
Cinema - (definitely overthinking the waters breaking thing - most people's don't go in a "whoosh" like they show on TV)
Organised all the cupboards
Washed all the new baby clothes
Batch cooked - spag bol/chilli/meatballs/lasagne/soups to fill up freezer
Organise all direct debits/financial things, and looked for good deals on things (like internet/phone) while on mat leave.
Swam at local gym
Pottered around garden centres, shops and library
Read LOTS of books
Did Xmas shopping (DD was a November baby and I knew I wouldn't have time once she was here).
Definitely overthinking things. I eventually went into labour past 42 weeks by 'due date' and by the end of it I was going to John Lewis / IKEA hoping that I would tempt fate . I didn't. Waters went at home cooking supper.
Cinema definitely. You won't get as much chance to go out later, and if you do it's probably a (dodgy) Mother & Baby screening for the first few months. I saw one of the worst movies I've ever seen during a mother and baby screening, the choice on offer is dire.
I had read a lot of pregnancy / birth books while pregnant. Then, I didn't have as much time to read after baby arrived, so you might want to read a weaning book or something, to have it at the back of your mind when the time comes?
I had the exact same worries about my waters breaking, I didn't dare go anywhere alone! So happens I was 2 weeks overdue so shows what I know! I did go to the cinema and really enjoyed it! Make sure you sit at the end though as it might be uncomfortable sliding down the rows with a bump, it was for me anyway. I watched a lot of tv and had so many baths! I cleaned a lot too.. I miss those days.
Sleep, sleep, sleep and sleep some more!
I had lots of lovely plans, and with both DC I went into labour as soon as my maternity leave started even though there should've been plenty of time (38 and 36 weeks). In fact with the second one I was still technically at work as it was the weekend before my ML started. So whatever you plan just make sure you've done everything you need to get ready for the baby first!
Sit in a coffee shop, alone, drinking a hot drink.
Go to restaurants.
Go to the theatre and cinema.
Do any adult activity.
Yes to shopping in peace.
Pottering is good, as is batch cooking.
Overthinking OP. Very few people's waters go in weird timings/locations. Probably less than the number of people caught somewhere like that with sudden onset vomiting.
Just live life as usual until labour starts. In so far as you are physically comfortable.
I started mat leave when labour started with all 3 of mine. #3 was such a good girl she started half an hour after I closed my laptop on a Friday evening.
Turned out to be the worst baby of the bunch though.
Definitely batch cook, and generally get ahead with as much house stuff as you can (deep clean; wash all the bedlinen; empty the laundry basket; do all your ironing if you iron).
Christmas shopping. Also buy and wrap birthday presents for any birthdays coming up in next six months.
I actually found that stuff like cinema, museums and galleries was easy with a small baby. It's when they get older that that's more difficult.
Have lots of dates, dinners etc. with your DP.
Set up stations with nappies, nappy bags, wipes, dirty clothes buckets, changing mats - one upstairs and one downstairs if you can manage it.
Have long relaxing baths.
Do your nails and generally pamper yourself as much as possible.
Thanks everyone for your responses and ideas! I'll be sure to get the important baby stuff done before I swan off to have fun. I've already washed the clothes
because they're adorable and I couldn't help myself but still have to batch cook food and clean the house thoroughly.
savagehk I want to go see the new 'Logan' film as I know that's not going to be offered at the mum and baby screenings lol. I never miss an opportunity to see Hugh Jackman topless! I'm very happy that I've got the green light to go!
MajorSharpesButtons I really would love to sleep lots but I just know I'm not going to manage it. I'm a bad napper and haven't been able to sleep properly at night since about week 6 which is why I'm going to go for a lie-in every day instead to try and compensate for every bad nights sleep
Good luck OP, I've just remembered that it was the supermarket shop for the batch cooking that started off labour with DC1! DH had a frantic few hours of desperately cooking and cooling lasagne and shepherds pies while I laboured (loudly!) in the lounge!
It might seem too early, but it might be worth calling a few childcare providers locally if you're planning on returning to work. If only just to find out about waiting lists or make appts to view etc. I didn't do this until dd was about 4 months old and that was already too late to get a place at my preferred nurseries ... Wish I'd made a few calls when I had the time to do so easily. And do take time to do a few indulgent things just for you, cinema or manicure, nice lunches!
Things I'm planning on doing (my mat leave starts in 3 weeks!)
Filling freezer full of home cooked food
Final spring clean of the house
Optician for new glasses
Getting a pedicure
Washing and sorting baby clothes
Organising a regular online shop
Tidying the garden up a bit
Planting some flowers in pots
Getting Easter eggs sorted
Lots of sleeping!
Seeing friends/other mum's to be for coffee
I didn't go to the cinema late pregnancy as I was so uncomfortable sitting in those kind of chairs! But don't worry another your waters.
I read some books, gave out house a big clean and found some box sets to entertain me. I also sat in the nursery a lot as we have a lovely nursing chair
Enjoy the peace before your baby arrive!
With DD1 I was concientous and cooked / washed baby clothes / cleaned etc.
With DD2 I knew that I wouldn't have any time to myself while looking after a newborn 24/7, so I just pottered about and did things that are impossible with a tiny baby, like having long baths and so on.
It was really really boring, because DD2 was 3 weeks late and by that stage I was totally fed up and huge and had no interest in leaving the house!
I'm seriously impressed with how much people do in late pregnancy! I waddled, grumbled a lot and felt like a beached whale whenever I lay down. Though I must admit I also loitered in John Lewis and Waitrose in the vain hope that my waters would break there. I must have looked like the worst shoplifter.
Sorry I can't respond to everyone individually but I am definitely taking in all your suggestions because, quite honestly, they're all very good. I'm especially up for long baths, a bit of pampering, getting my hair done etc. if I get time before baby arrives. Need to arrange some date nights and days out with DH too for sure.
DoubleR I'm impressed that your husband carried on with the cooking! Mine wouldn't have a clue how to take over unless I was batch cooking oven chips! Can I borrow him if I end up in the same situation as you did?
caprifun Thanks for the tip on the nursery but we signed baby Ponocky up to our preferred one in December. They have a years waiting list so that was as late as we could leave it, being as I plan to return to work in January 2018. I had no idea about the waiting lists for nurseries though until a friend mentioned it last year!
mycatloveslego Congratulations! When are you due? My optician told me they won't test your eyes in the third trimester as pregnancy can mess with your vision and that it can take up to 6 months after baby is born to settle back to 'normal'. If you're just buying new frames using your old prescription though then that's ok.
toffeeboffin I never get time normally to just sit and watch the world go by in a coffee shop so I think i'll put that at the top of the list.
Cinema, definitely! Lunches with friends or on your own, surprising how a quiet lunch and cup of coffee on your own becomes gold dust..
Feet up with a good book.
Get a cleaner to do your spring clean. You'll be stuck in the house often enough when the baby is there.
What I'd do if I had my time again...
Walk out of the house with just keys, a purse and phone. Get into car and drive. Not worry about getting babies and toddlers into coats/shoes etc and then into a car seat.
Just be. Enjoy calm and quiet.
Go for some reflexology.
Order a Cook delivery for your freezer.
Go swimming alone. Go everywhere alone! The amazingness of being alone will soon be a thing of dreams!
I finished work earlier than planned due to horrendous sciatica which meant I couldn't sit down, so I ended up being more like a whirling dervish for the start of mat leave than doing all the nice, calm, resting type things I had planned. The house was spotless, all Christmas and birthday shopping done and wrapped, walked 2-3 miles a day, went for lunch or dinner out a lot, swam and went to aquanatal class.
The best thing I did was decide to have a proper treat every week - I had reflexology (from a midwife who did it part time), pedicure and pregnancy massage. Top tip - find a massage therapist who has a couch with a hole in for your bump, it remains the best £35 I've ever spent because you get to lie on your front and be comfy.
I started my maternity leave 7 weeks early last year. It was a blissful time looking back but at the time I thought I was a bit bored! Helpful things I did:
-little jobs around the house you have been meaning to do for ages
-deep cleaning of the house and things like taking duvets, pillows to the laundry (I did go into full on nesting mode and feel the urge to clean everything though!)
-batch cooking and freezing
-get all 'life admin' sorted- setting up bills to pay by direct debit automatically, insurance to renew etc so you don't have to worry about stuff like that once baby is here
-sorting and decorating nursery
-set up ocado or online shopping and amazon prime
But most importantly, make the most of some time to do whatever you want! Sleep, potter around, go to cafes, see friends, have a bath, read a magazine, go out in the evening for dinner or a drink with your partner. Definitely go to the cinema and don't worry about that! Enjoy!
I aimed for one fun thing and one productive thing a day - seemed a good balance!
Ponocky I'm due 12th April, still seems like ages to wait. Thanks for the optician tip, fortunately I don't need an eye test, just some new glasses. Realised the other day it's been nearly 10 years since I bought a new pair😮
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