Knowing what to expect when you are expecting a new child can be confusing, especially for parents who are living with a disability. The sleepless nights, the added expenses and all the preparation that goes into planning for your new baby can leave you feeling stressed out. You’ve got a lot on your plate, but before you wrap up your planning, make sure you tackle these key new parent tasks. Here are some tips for adapting to parenthood as a person with a disability.
Create a Safe, Convenient Home
If you’re like most new parents, you may be getting your home ready for baby, otherwise known as nesting. Nesting is a normal and important part of any new parent’s routine before the new baby arrives. As you prepare your home, be sure you are thinking of essential home modifications that will make parenting easier and safer for you and your family. Install some grab bars in potentially slippery spots such as tubs and showers.
Pay attention to floors, ensuring that trip hazards are removed and that all mats/rugs are non-slip. For those with impaired vision, simple prep including labeling your child’s food and essentials with textured tape can make mealtime a little less hectic for everyone.
Set Up Your Support Network
Finding your own routine and methods as a new parent is important. But finding people and advice to help guide the way can be a real lifesaver. All new parents need some support from time to time. Whether it’s a meal train from friends, advice on how to wear your baby or emotional support, there are tons of helpful resources available for any new parent. As soon as you are comfortable, start researching and reaching out to find the help you need.
You can search online for parenting classes and resources, and may even be able to find help especially tailored for parents who are living with a disability. Many new parents find it helpful to hire help to take care of their child, or hiring help with chores around the house to make life easier.
Start Making Self-Care a Habit
Stress is a big part of any parents’ life, but stress can be especially intense for new parents. Getting used to a new sleeping schedule, caring for your little one and juggling responsibilities can leave you worn out. Basic, self-care such as eating a healthy diet and getting enough exercise will give you the energy you need to tackle your new parental responsibilities. But it’s also important to find stress relief and take care of your mental health.
Simple stress-relieving practices are easiest for new parents. Beginning a new meditation practice or doing daily yoga can help alleviate your tensions. If you begin to feel completely overwhelmed, know that this is normal but be aware of signs of serious issues such as depression and anxiety. For parents who have just given birth, postpartum depression can be a real problem and professional help may be needed to help you feel like yourself again.
Doing Daily Yoga Video With Your Children
Create Your New Family’s Financial Plan
Before you welcome your new baby, it’s helpful to spend some time preparing a budget. Break your budget down to include your own expenses and health care costs, and make room for the initial expenses of a baby. If you need to pay for home upgrades, factor those in, too. Many new parents find this sort of planning help online. If you rely on any benefits for income, check into how having a child will have an impact. Finally, start making plans to begin saving for future goals. Setting aside funds now for future expenses, such as school, family trips and unexpected expenses will help you avoid stress for your family later.
If you’re becoming a new parent, you don’t have to be nervous or afraid. With some planning and preparation, you can get your life ready to welcome your new child and make being a new parent a little bit easier.
Harry Cline is creator of NewCaregiver.org and author of the upcoming book, The A-Z Home Care Handbook: Health Management How-Tos for Senior Caregivers. As a retired nursing home administrator, father of three, and caregiver to his ninety-year-old uncle, Harry knows how challenging and rewarding caregiving can be. He also understands that caregiving is often overwhelming for those just starting out. He created his website and is writing his new book to offer new caregivers everywhere help and support.
Featured Image Credit: Push Living
More Information from homeadvisor.com