Your first big trip with baby. Whether you’re packing up the car to visit the in-laws or flying off to a tropical island (lucky you!), the notion of traveling with your newest family member probably fills with you with an equal measure of excitement and dread. But you can do it! Speaking from personal experience — I just returned from a week-long Caribbean vacation with my 8-month-old — here are some tips to make your trip as easy and fun as possible. Hint: It’s all about preparation!
Your body has transformed into a baby-feeding-and-comforting machine. Your romantic partner is suddenly someone’s Daddy. You’ve figured out how to line up all the snaps in those onesie pajamas. But here are some things you might not have realized will change forever once you’re a parent.
The average newborn weighs approximately 7.5 pounds. But how many pounds will YOU weigh when you walk out of the delivery room? And how long will it take for you to get your pre-baby body back? While the timeline is different for every woman and is based on a number of factors—how much weight you gained while pregnant, whether or not you’re breastfeeding, your diet and exercise habits—there are certain weight-loss milestones you can mark on your calendar.
When your newborn lies on his stomach and practices lifting his head, it prepares him to explore the world on his own. “Tummy time helps your infant build strength in his back, legs, arms and neck,” says Joanne Cox, M.D., a pediatrician at Children’s Hospital Boston. “This helps with further development, such as rolling over and sitting.”
You’ve heard plenty of stories (among friends, on social media, or maybe even in celebrity tell-all books) of women experiencing postpartum depression. The postnatal depression you might not have heard about is PPND (paternal postnatal depression)—the one your partner may suffer from after your little bundle of joy arrives.
This postpartum survival guide culls our favorite experts' tried-and-true tips about how to make the best of this challenging rite of passage.
Here's what you'll need to know:
At the hospital, your baby is examined by the pediatrician, who will explain to you any obvious curiosities (for example, birthmarks or a pointy head shape).
After you get home, however, your baby may produce some unexpected sights and sounds; most are normal.
I remember chatting with a friend about a month before I was due with my son about my postpartum exercise routine. At that time, I was an avid morning gym goer — 6:30 am spin classes — things one can do before baby! I was under the great delusion that I would miss a couple of weeks and then be right back into my fitness regimen.
It takes time to get back into your bikini-body shape after having a little one, but the key to settling into a happy weight may be more about making time for pleasure than going on a deprivation diet. “If you aren’t living a joyful life—despite getting enough rest, watching what you eat, and exercising regularly—you won’t be able to reach or sustain your happy weight,” says Erin Cox, author of the new book, One Hot Mama, who struggled with her weight after having three kids.
British researchers say allowing babies to feed themselves fruits, vegetables, meat and bread—known as baby-led weaning—may teach them to better regulate their own appetites. The study showed that 6-month-old babies introduced to finger foods they could pick up and eat on their own rather than being primarily spoon-fed were less likely to be overweight or obese through age 6 ½.