Having a baby is a huge money-making business for so many. So, for a new mum, it can be especially overwhelming to know what to invest in and what to leave on the shelf. I remember quite clearly when pregnant with our first child, coming home after our 20week scan with a tonne of items, only to not use half of them. But there is another downside to this ever growing market, not just buying too much, but buying the wrong items. There are certain products I really regret not purchasing with both my children and really hope my list helps expecting mums out there.
1) A Baby Bath
Oh, how I wish I had purchased one of these from the very start. It would have saved a tremendous amount of backache. We were fortunate to have a Cosatto changing table, which included a baby bath that sat at standing height. This was brilliant as it saved so much bending and lifting, especially when things are still quite sore and swollen down below, not to mention helping our backs. But, as soon as our babies were too big for this bath, which, just a heads up, does not take long, they were straight in the standard bath. I wish we had videoed this experience, to be honest, as it is quite comical looking back. Let me tell you, it is not an easy job solo bathing a wriggling baby, with one arm supporting their head whilst the other washes them all the while slipping and sliding everywhere. My personal view, I would recommend purchasing one of the Angelcare baths. The mesh material is gentle so as not to irritate your babies skin or rub against it. It provides a full support for babies, enabling both of your arms to be free to wash them and take countless photos of your beautiful newborn. This really is one of my top products I wish I had purchased and have since recommended to all my mummy to be friends.
2) Breast shields
So, I only heard about these after giving birth to my second child as I was unable to breastfeed my first so it was a completely new experience for me. The pain! Especially when you first start. Not everyone experiences a great deal of discomfort, but I did, to the point I was incredibly tempted to give up if it wasn’t for my stubborn ‘I don’t give up’ personality. Your breasts have never experienced feeding a baby before. It is a completely new sensation and with the intense frequency of feeds, it’s incredibly difficult to enable your nipples time to adjust. So, they do become sore, cracked, can throb and even sometimes bleed. (I thoroughly recommend being in touch with your health visitor and local peer breast support worker, especially if you are new to breastfeeding. Some hospitals even offer a drop in service every week.) Though I did not use these myself, I really regret not giving them a go. So many other mums I have since spoken to who used breast shields informed me that it really helped take the edge off in those first few weeks. Breastfeeding for them, became a completely different experience, less focused on the initial pain and discomfort and more focused upon enjoying the closeness and bond developing between mum and baby.
3) Swaddle Blankets
Again, this is a personal preference as not every baby would benefit from these. However, our little girl loved nothing more at the beginning than to be curled up in a ball and laid on my chest day or night. This probably didn’t help with the fact she had chronic colic 24/7. She didn’t like having just a blanket over her at night and it took her a few months till she was happy with being in a grow bag. I personally feel, if we had brought blankets specifically designed for swaddling, she would have settled better and gained comfort from the closeness. She naturally was curled up in a ball for a number of weeks and didn’t draw her legs down for quite some time, so I do wish I had been more educated on this method of comforting and helping babies to settle.
4) Pressure Relief Cushion
I think if I had these in a particular order, this would be #1! Investing in a ‘donut ring’ as I like to call them, though I wouldn’t have needed for very long, would have saved me an absolute tonne of discomfort. When giving birth to our first daughter, I had to have an episiotomy and also, unfortunately, tore as many women do. Trying to sit down comfortably was a nightmare. I was up, down, place my weight on the left cheek, no the right cheek, get up, sit on a cushion, raise my feet, stand up and start again. NIGHTMARE! Not to mention, after I had had that first ‘movement’ shall we say, my stitches came undone and a section of my tear opened without me realising until my next midwife check. So, as you can imagine, I really wish I had had one of these specially designed cushions with the hole in the centre as it would have taken quite a lot of the pressure away from my most sensitive area.
5) A Video Camera
I know this item isn’t a practical one, nor essential and it most definitely isn’t one on a budget. But, I really regret not having a video camera. I do sincerely wish I could go back in time and press record for every little moment. We are all human, our memories are only so good at looking back and being able to hear their first laugh, the first time you thought your baby said mama, their first reaction to trying food or their first steps. I am a complete advocate for living in the moment, but there are some moments too special to miss and risk forgetting, I am in all honesty a little emotional thinking about it as I write. But our children, especially in the first two years of their life, go through so many incredible and amazing milestones, they change, grow and become these remarkable, unique individuals. Don’t miss out on having the opportunity to saver those moments and relive them whenever you wish at the push of a button.
*This post is my personal opinion from my experiences. I do not earn any commission mentioning any items below.