Tips for Dad: The Third Trimester
Making space for the New Blessing in Your HouseLife in a small two bedroom duplex is great! Except it is extremely challenging to make room for the new blessing in your home. One of the rooms were obviously our bedroom, but the other was completely full of food storage and a giant desk to do our homework on. This was a great setup for just my wife and I; however, it would never work after trying to get cribs, toy bins, and baby books in the room. Beginning the third trimester is a great time to get everything ready so that you aren't frantically rushing to get the house in order. It was very challenging, but we had to clean and organize our entire kitchen in order to relocate all the food storage. We also had to sell off the desk and get used to doing homework on the kitchen table. My wife chose to not do her homework on the kitchen table though, because it wasn't as comfortable. Instead she used the couch. Every time I tried the couch though, my "homework" turned into a homework session with my eye lids shut, then waking an hour or two later and realizing that I hadn't completed anything. I guess this is all part of the sacrifices of having a child; after all, once the baby is born homework will hardly ever get done anyway.
Getting the Baby Room Set upAfter finally getting everything out of the room it was time to get the nursery all put together and decorated. Of course, this being our first baby we had to go out and buy the crib, nursing chair, and all the other things needed to have a good nursery. When it comes to purchasing all the items needed for the nursery, both my wife and I agree that getting more gender neutral things is the best way to go. At least for the major purchases such as the crib and chair because these things can be used for a long time and be passed down to the next kids.
Doing the Simple TasksMy poor wife was struggling so much as she came close to her due date. Even some of the normal day-to-day things such as cleaning, cooking, and even trying to tie her own shoes had become challenging. So, I personally think it is only fair that us husbands sacrifice a little bit and try to go above and beyond our normal responsibilities to try and help her out. Husbands, let’s be honest with ourselves, up to this point we really haven’t done very much to bring this child into the world and the third trimester is our chance make a difference. Even if your wife is doing great at the small things, she will definitely be appreciative of you taking over some of her tasks.
Packing a Hospital BagNot very often do I get to tell my wife “I told you so.” But when it comes to having the hospital bag packed and ready to go several weeks early I definitely can. I kept telling my wife repeatedly that she needs to get a bag together just in case something happens. Unfortunately, the bag never got packed until it was time to head to the hospital about one week earlier than the expected due date. As my wife sat on the couch basically screaming in pain telling me to hurry up, I frantically jumped out of the shower and started to pack the bag as best as I could. She probably didn’t get any matching clothes in the bag, but ain’t nobody got time for matching at a time like this, right?! My wife will confirm this, but even if I had 2 days to pack some clothes in a bag I probably still wouldn’t be able to match the clothes correctly.
Don't Forget the Dad BagGot the hospital bag ready for your wife? That is great! Did you remember to pack your own bag? I totally did not, and I regretted that as we were sitting in labor and delivery for almost 24 hours. I had only the clothes on my back and a cell phone charger with me to survive the 24 hours. Things I wish I had in a man bag are change of clothes, snacks, pillow and bedding. The snacks are definitely helpful in case you get hungry and can't leave the room (be sensitive to your wife though - if she isn't allowed to eat try to sneak your snacks out really quickly).
The final weeks of the third trimester is the most critical out of all the semesters because it isn't a matter of planning for parties or decorating the nursery. Some of these things have to happen in order to have a happy and healthy spouse. But, most of the points above can be summed up with one word "service."