Does the hospital have parking arrangements? Do you have your cell phone (and charger)? Or money for the hospital pay phone. Who will look after the kids during labour? It’s worth planning ahead!
Once you’ve committed to support her, make sure you’re providing unwavering support, encouragement and practical help.
Good communication about the impending birth is key to playing an active role – learn some technical terms (like cervix, transition, perineum) so you’re not baffled by science on the day.
Around 30-38 weeks, you’ll get lots of practical info like how baby’s developing, the birth process and breastfeeding. Check out www.parentscentre.org.nz or a District Health Board funded class in your area.
This can affect you in the first 12-14 weeks, so try eating very small portions every 2 to 3 hours or try a range of foods – some might agree with you more than others, try stewed or tinned peaches, plain crackers, flat lemonade…
Then your nutritional needs are greater and you’ll more easily become deficient in folic acid and iron – so stock up and see what your LMC advises.
Vegan or Vegetarian diets may need supplements or to eat more iron-rich foods. Pick up plenty of legumes, nuts, wholegrain breads and cereals from the supermarket – and eat them!
Avoid processed cold foods like pate and soft cheeses, and be careful with unknown or suspect food sources, like deli foods that may have been sitting for extended periods of time.
Avoid frying food. Don’t overcook the nutrients out of veggies, but do make sure that chook is cooked properly.