Welcome Home: Week 7
At seven weeks, your baby has already met several early milestones and is growing more each day. By now, you may have even caught a smile or two! Baby laughs and chats are things that can connect you to your baby, so don't be afraid to carry on a conversation. Here's what's typically happening to your and your baby by seven weeks postpartum.
By now, you may have lost some water weight. While pregnant, your body held approximately 50% more blood volume than normal, but most women return to a normal blood volume by six or seven weeks postpartum. If you haven't seen much weight loss, just remember that it took nine months to put that weight on, so be patient if you're trying to lose the baby weight. Hopefully the swelling has gone down and your incision or vulva has healed completely. However, just because your medical provider gives the "okay" for sexual intercourse, it's a good idea to take things slow; your lady parts may likely be tight and need time to stretch back out. Communicate with your spouse and don't put too much pressure on yourself. Certain therapies may be helpful in aiding your return to your normal level of comfort during intercourse.
Pregnancy, labor, and childbirth are all miraculous processes. However, you're currently witnessing one of the most awe-inspiring parts of parenthood: a newborn growing and learning. In fact, your baby's brain grows five centimeters during the first three months alone! While awake, your baby is constantly observing the world around him. He may begin to reach out to touch and grab objects more often, and baby's eyes can now easily track objects. As eyesight and coordination increase, there's a whole new world of things to experience and learn. Sit back and enjoy the show! As far as daily tasks, here are some essentials you might want to keep in your diaper bag. It's easy to want to be prepared by packing everything but the kitchen sink, but here are some basics to stick to:
- changing pad
- diaper rash ointment
- anti-odor diaper disposal bags
- 1 thin blanket
- one spare baby outfit (in case of diaper leaks)
- breastfeeding cover/bottle and formula, whichever is applicable
- 1 clean burp cloth
Of course, you'll have your own little extras you want or need, but this is a good list to start with. It's also not a bad idea to invest in a diaper bag with various compartments so you can easily organize all of the above essentials.
Re-pack your diaper bag often. It takes a lot of stress away from trying to get out the door if you can re-pack your diaper bag from time to time. By doing this, you save space by emptying any trash, used diapers, or dirty burp cloths and/or other linens and clothing. Replace these with new fresh items, and always make sure you have at least 3 diapers and plenty of wipes. A clean and organized diaper bag is next to godliness--well, almost.