It is a very common thing these days for new parents to DIY their own confinements. I still could recall back in 2017, doing your confinement was always got to be done with a Confinement Nanny or a MIL or a mother. And time past, if you did not hire one Confinement Nanny, you will be deemed as 'unrealistic'. 'complacent', or perhaps some people might speculate that you might be just too poor to even have a confinement nanny.
In my last post I shared about how I made a decision to fire my very first confinement nanny after 2 weeks. It was a decision that was difficult to make because, as first time parents, what do we know? We were not confident that we could care for our firstborn well once the nanny left.
But I would have never knew that firing our confinement nanny was also a turning point for me. All of my subsequent pregnancies, confinement nannies always seemed to be out of the question. We find other ways to do our own confinement and mind you, it was without any extended help. It was just my husband and me doing it together.
And here is to list a few reasons why new parents are not hiring confinement nannies.
Budget...- The price to hire a nanny might not be right for everyone. An average nanny cost about $3000 and if you are giving birth at about festive seasons? It can go up for about $4000 plus. And if you go for SG local nanny agencies, even climbing flight of stairs within the home means another extra $200 on top of the hired price. So.... honestly, who wants a nanny if they knew another way??
Covid19 - This is a no-brainer. We always gets nannies over Malaysia. But now with all the lockdowns etc... the confinement nannies cant come and this created a great shortage of confinement nannies in Singapore. SO prolly, some mommies had to do their confinement especially during the Circuit Breaker.
Extended family - If you have a troop of parents & parents in-law, then some will decide not having a confinement nanny.
We cannot guarantee if we would have another lockdown but the circuit breaker & this covid19 has proven that human beings are more versatile than we thought! And doing our own Confinement is definitely POSSIBLE!
So here we go on your Confinement Do-It-Yourself; Survival Essentials! My Top 10 to go list!
Confinement Tingkat. With a rising of people doing their own confinements, there are a lot of group buys available for you to choose from. Every Tingkat will have their good & bad reviews. One of the most common concern is if the food is nice and if one gets bored with the food. So the suggestion is vary your caterers to two different caterers. One to cater for lunch and the other to cater for dinner. As for if the meals repeat, definitely there are some repeats and that is absolutely normal.
Herbal Bath. Seriously, pamper yourself. Soak your feet or your body if you have a tub and enjoy 15mins of silence. You can get this shower packs from medical halls. And if you have a Postnatal massage package, there are some service providers do provide complimentary small herbal bags.
Create E.A.S.Y Routine Well, do not complicate your life but overthinking. Follow this simple acronym. E for Eat. Feed your baby. Track the eating schedule. The pee & poop too. Especially, the early months of your newborn is all about feeding & sleeping. The more aware you are of your baby timings, the better you can plan your time. A for Activity. Well, babies can have some short few min of engagement with their parents. S is for sleep. So the good news is every newborn will be sleeping. Do everything you can to make your baby comfortable to sleep. Sleep is absolute importance for your baby for their brain development. And remember, babies who do not take naps and are overtired will have trouble resting well at night as well. Y is for You-Time. This is one of the most important part of the equation. More often than not, new parents are sleep-deprived and it can make parenthood less enjoyable.
Sleep Whenever You Can. So many times, people say, sleep whenever the the baby sleeps. But, really, sleep whenever you can. Don't micro-mange the little things. Rest whenever you can because babies can be unpredictable as well.
Hire A Part Time Helper As opposed to hiring a confinement nanny, a part time help to help with all the laundry and washing of toilets and sheets once or twice a week is great. It helps ease some load off you and your husband while keeping the house clean.
Delegation It is important for husbands to participate in doing confinement. It is not just for the sharing of duties, it is also a form of emotional and mental support for wives. There are many duties husbands can help with. Like washing the bottles, changing diapers, carrying items etc.. while mommies can nurse in peace and bond with their babies. So learn to delegate what both of you and your husband will be dabbling with. The key is to work together. There will be less romance but there will be more chemistry built for both of your little baby.
Be In A Support Group While many of us might not have extended families to help with, it is still important to have a support group. In fact even if you have your parents or in laws, it is still important to be in a support group. It can be a group with the mommies who are of the same EDD month as you or groups which has a mixture of new mommies & experienced mommas, or niche topic groups like breastfeeding. These support groups are places where you find like-minded people who might be going through the same problems you have while caring for your newborn and you might find some of their experiences useful as solutions to your problems! Some groups for you. Breastfeeding Whatsapp Group https://chat.whatsapp.com/LHJ5kiNQbElHQzpYSfw7P1 Facebook Postpartum Group https://www.facebook.com/bumpbirthbeyond.co
Have Quality Conversations With Your Spouse Wind down your day or start your day, or anytime of the day, by checking in with each other. Postnatal blues or postpartum depression are very real issues in our society now. Even husbands can have postpartum depression. In the early days parenthood, there will be a need for both of you to find a rhythm in both of your lives again as an individual and also as a couple. So check in with each other to make sure that both of you are feeling balance and voice out if either one of you needs any help.
Learn To Know What To do Go for a simple antenatal course is important. It will help give you a general guideline of what you & your husband can expect during labor and after labor. The more you learn, the more prepared you will both be as parents. Antenatal courses are great for husbands as well to start getting into the groove of parenthood. If you & your spouse's too busy or prefers to learn baby care or topics like breastfeeding in a more private and comfortable setting, go for courses which can be conducted online. Online learning is good as well to prevent any unnecessary Covid19 exposure.
Be Comfortable To Disallow Visitors The moment you go into labor, everything can start to be exhausting. And it is fine to tell your family and friends to visit you and the baby at a later date. Especially now with the COvid19, it is good to give your baby little to no exposure to people who are not his/her direct caregiver. So do not feel pressurized that you need to invite or allow guests over at your place.
And download your Covid19-ready hospital list here. (Wait for the pop-up!)