Recently, Ashley Taylor from Disabledparents.org reached out to me, asking if she could write a guest post for my blog. Parenting is hard work for anyone – and while a lot of her tips ring true for every new parent, it is especially important when dealing with health issues and disabilities to be prepared and receive the support that you need to thrive. Go on over to her site to check out helpful resources and articles for parents with disabilities.
Without further ado, enjoy these tips from Ashley!
When looking in, being a parent can seem simple enough. The true complexities of raising another human being are mostly seen at a closer look. No one is a perfect parent, even when they appear so from the outside. If you live with a disability and are about to become a parent, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed with the looming responsibilities. However, you are not alone. There are 4.1 million parents with disabilities in the U.S. Do the best you can, utilize help when possible, and accept the imperfections and challenges as they come.
Being a parent is a full time job. New parents are often overwhelmed but are too proud to ask for help. When in distress remember that people around you have probably done this before and don’t be afraid to ask friends, family members, or your parents for help or advice. And as birth day approaches, keep in mind these few tips:
Prepare Your Home
One of the challenges every parent deals with is preparing the home for the incoming baby. Preparation is more than painting the baby room or fixing the crib. And while you might think that your baby crawling around is still far into the future, remember that once the kid is here time flies. Prepare early rather than later.
- Be cautious of where you keep house cleaning products like laundry soap, bleach, etc. They should be hidden and out of reach.
- Use magnetic locks to ensure safety
- Be mindful of where you store your firearms and ensure they are completely out of easy reach
- Make sure to secure and anchor furniture like dressers and televisions in order to prevent tip overs, falls, or accidents.
Stock Up on Necessities
Babies are small, but they need a lot of attention, which makes it difficult to go shopping. The Huffington Post lists several key things to remember when getting organized before birth.
- Buy plenty of baby wipes and baby lotion to have handy.
- Make sure you have enough baby blankets, onesies, and diapers.
- Get a stockpile of necessary items like rubbing alcohol, baby soap, cotton pads.
- For mommy, pick up maxi pads and other women toiletries so as to avoid running out in inopportune times.
- Meal prep. It’s a good idea to keep some home cooked meals ready once you’re sleep deprived and tired. Take some time before to cook some good meals and freeze or store them properly for later consumption.
- Invest in a nursing bra. If mommy plans on nursing the baby, having these handy and ready to go is definitely a plus.
- Attend classes for soon to be parenting. These classes can provide helpful information that will really prove useful when you’re short on time.
Cleaning and Tending to the Environment
This might not sound very exciting, but taking some time to clean the house and clear the air for the best possible environment. This can help mood and get you a nice head start for when the baby comes.
- If possible consider cleaning the carpets and floors.
- Clean around vents and blinds to get rid of dust.
- Stay away from synthetic air fresheners
- Institute a no shoes policy which will keep your floors clean.
Care for Yourself
As the new responsibilities pile up and the full nights of sleep get farther and farther away it is important to remember to care for yourself. After all, if you neglect your health it won’t be good for your new baby either. Avoid drugs and alcohol when stressed and focus on dealing with your feelings in healthy ways. Make a little effort to implement some self care during these hectic times.
- Give yourself some ‘me’ time. Take a walk, continue your hobbies, take an evening or afternoon off.
- Take care of yourself physically eat a nice clean diet, exercise, and catch up on sleep.
- Develop a support system of other parents you can talk to that can lend advice
This new baby is a blessing, but it comes with its fair share of complications. Remember that parentings is difficult job for everyone and becoming a parent that has a disability might add some challenges, but nothing that is not overcome with enough love, preparation, patience, and a loving support group of friends and family.