My sister recently had a baby. He's precious. His name is Case Holland Pryor and although I have multiple pictures of him, she's very limited with what she puts on the Internet so I'll respect her and keep him off of here. I'm sorry. But take my word for it...he's handsome and squishy and a great baby.
Some of you may not know but my sister had a rough pregnancy. Lots of morning sickness, aches and pains and braxton hicks and list goes on. As her due date approached, things started to get more intense for her also. His due date was Sept. 16....by the end of July, she was having more pains and it seemed like more calls to her doctor as well as more visits were happening. She also had a couple late night runs to the ER but all was well. We all knew that Case was coming early....but no one knew how early, except the Lord of course. :)
Well, my mom and I had planned for Britt's baby shower to be August 9. It was super cute. Brittany picked out cookies and milk. So, we had all kinds of cookies and coffee punch and milk. It was great. Also, the week before the shower, Kraig, Rett and I had planned a trip to go visit Kraig's family. I told Brittany that Case had to hang on through the weekend so we could make it home. So, on August 6, we came home from Pennsylvania, Brittany went into the hospital early Thursday morning (the 7th) and had the baby. He was a little over 5 weeks early. Because of a prior visit to the ER, the awesome doctor had given Case steroid shots to help his lungs so when he did make his appearance he wasn't so far behind. His lungs and everything looked relatively well. But because he was a preemie, he had to stay in the NICU until he could breathe and eat on his own. So, the next Thursday, I got to meet my nephew and he got to come home. WOW! What a miracle and what a blessing from God! We were all just praising the Lord!!!
I left out some fun details because it is her story to tell but I will give you some pointers from the outside looking in. And thoughts from when I was in the hospital having my son. Brittany and Lance were super lucky and were able to stay at the hospital the whole time Case was in NICU. That is not the case with all new moms. But I think some things that are super helpful for family/friends that visit the new moms/dads are as follows:
1 - snacks....and lots of them. I would also include drinks or bottled waters in this category. Or I would say bringing quarters for the vending machines because they don't always get to leave the room but you never know when those late night munchies will attack so snacks/drinks are always helpful to have on hand when you come for a visit.
2. I would say money or gift cards to places to eat that are located close to the hospital. Hospital food gets old quick and the daddy doesn't get to eat that food so gift cards and money is always helpful so the dad can get something to eat too. If you are like my sister, I'm sure she had money budgeted for such occurrence but not everyone thinks like that. I sure didn't. I forgot all about food when were going in to have Rett. So, it wasn't budgeted but we had the money and people brought us food so it all worked out for sure.
3. Lastly, and very important, I know it's hard to know who will be at the hospital when. But, if at all possible...try to coordinate who comes when. I know with Rett, we had pretty flexible visiting hours but it still seemed like everyone came at one time and then no one came. So, I felt guilty that some people weren't able to see him because of others, which is fine but if they were staggered visits then everyone would have gotten their time with Rett. With Case though, no one got to see him because of being in NICU and they had stricter visiting hours so I think in those cases especially, the staggered visiting times are crucial. Sometimes, I could tell Brittany was more tired from all the people that the actual birth itself. I'm exaggerating but I know she was tired because people came all at once on some days. Just be thoughtful and maybe try to plan the visits with family members and/or the new mommy to make sure you aren't coming on top of someone else's visit.
All in all, being a new mommy and daddy are great. I think these are some of the things to be mindful of if you go visit the new family in the hospital. It's not much but everyone always wants to visit and always wants to not come empty handed. Of course, you don't have to bring anything at all but arms to snuggle the new baby but if you do want to bring something, bring a snack :)
Hope this helps.
Once a new mommy, myself....