A mom’s story is not just about the pregnancy. It is a part of the story of her entire life. And when a mom is on bed rest, it is important to keep her occupied, mentally and physically. This post offers 16 things to do, including crafts, DIY projects, and more.
How many of you have dreaded going on bedrest after you’ve had your baby? Most of us have heard that bedrest (also known as bed rest) is one of the most important things you can do to recover from childbirth. But what exactly is bedrest? The truth is, bedrest won’t be easy. But it is well worth it. By following these 16 tips, you’ll be able to enjoy time with your family, relax and take time to recuperate after giving birth.
I have been bed-ridden for the past 19 weeks of my pregnancy, and I have to say, it is beautiful. I have been blessed with a strong baby girl who is growing up to be so sweet! I have had the opportunity to witness this little one’s life before she is ever born, and I am excited to continue to watch her grow!
Cara is a regular contributor to 510 Families, our hyperlocal site for East Bay parents, and she’s quickly establishing herself as an authority on “what to do with (and without!) your kid,” rather than “what to do when pregnant and on bedrest when you have another child.” Bedrest during pregnancy is a pain, and Cara volunteered to share her experiences with us.
I started having pre-term contractions at 26 weeks pregnant. They slowed and finally stopped thanks to medication and IV fluids. However, I’ve been on bed rest since then (nearly 6 weeks) and will continue to be until I’m 36 weeks pregnant. So, how does one stay sane when on bed rest and caring for a four-year-old? My amazing husband deserves the most credit for changing his work schedule (he’s a PhD student teaching this semester) as much as possible to ensure that he is here nearly every hour that my daughter isn’t at preschool. Lifesaver!
The rest of the methods I keep from losing my head and going totally insane over the fact that I haven’t left my home in a month save for doctor’s visits are listed below.
Try not to dwell on the fact that you haven’t left the home in over a month.
Writing a guest article for one of your favorite sites is a great way to get your name out there. (Note from the editor: Yes!)
Shop on the internet. Over here, the mix of bed rest with Christmas shopping and discounts has been a disaster. “With all this Christmas shopping,” my neighbor recently exclaimed, “I have a package come here every day!” My husband and I simply chuckled since we get a lot of parcels every day. It keeps me occupied! (This is my go-to resource for discovering the greatest bargains.)
Make up for lost time with picture books and scrapbooking. When my daughter was born, I started utilizing the Project Life scrapbooking method. It makes recording every day (or less often if you want) a breeze, so it’s no surprise that I’d fallen behind. I’m taking use of this chance to print hundreds of pictures to fill in the gaps from the last four years of my life and get them all into the book, along with captions. It’s given me a much-needed emotional lift as I remember how much fun my daughter and I used to have when she was a baby and picture what this little boy I’m fighting so hard to keep inside would do.
Diary. I’ve spent the most of my writing time catching up on my Project Life albums, but I’ve also written in a pregnancy journal and written letters to my little boy.
Play games with your children. When my 4-year-old daughter is at home, I attempt to engage her in activities other than watching television with her. Just because Mommy needs to remain in bed doesn’t mean I can’t do something worthwhile. My kid and I have spent a lot of time drawing, making paper dolls, creating, reading, playing games, and watching movies. My husband takes her on plenty of excursions and we keep her engaged in activities, just as I would during the week (I’m a stay-at-home parent). This keeps us sane.
Watch a lot of movies and television programs. If you’re on bedrest, Netflix is a must-have. I guarantee you’ll thank me. When no one is at home, I binge-watch television like it’s nobody’s business. I’ve watched nearly three seasons of Cheers (frequently while working on picture albums) and a few documentaries, among other things. There are also a slew of new original programs to choose from.
Make things with your hands. I’d always like doing hands-on crafts, so I created an advent calendar, stitched Christmas decorations, and colored a lot in a coloring book.
Read, read, read, read, read, read, read, read, read, read, read, read, read When I returned four novels to a friend a week later, she exclaimed, “Wow, you really have a lot of time on your hands!” And that wasn’t even the end of my reading for the week! Since I’ve had the time, I’ve read both enjoyable and more “serious” literature. (Because I have a kindle, I don’t have to get out of bed to start a new book.)
Accept your friends’ offers of assistance. Seriously, people are very eager to assist. I hate feeling like I’m a burden. This one was a bit difficult at first since I like doing things myself and assisting others, but then I understood that others were giving because they cared and really wanted to help. So, when my husband and I go to the doctor, I’ll let you babysit my kid. Yes, please knock on my door and ask my daughter out to play with your children. And how about some chocolate cupcakes brought to my door? Thank you very much! One friend volunteered to bring me lunch, which is a wonderful gesture when you’re on bedrest and have restaurant cravings.
Maintain a social presence. To prevent from feeling totally cut off from the outside world, thank god for e-mail, the phone, and Facebook. I’ve also read a lot more news stories and blogs than I usually do, allowing myself to get led down rabbit holes by a Facebook story.
Crossword puzzles are fun to do. I like crossword puzzles (and other types of word and logic problems) and usually purchase a magazine of them when I travel, so I always have a few on hand that are only half finished – it keeps my mind active. (Editor’s note: For those who inquire, “What can I get you?” a book of crossword puzzles is a good, particular answer.)
Blog. I’m sure the grandparents would disagree, but since I’ve been on bedrest, I’ve attempted to keep up with our private family blog a little better. Even if I’m failing, my heart is in the right place.
Allow yourself to feel a little sorry for yourself now and then. It’s OK to be disappointed that something is occurring. It’s a pity. It isn’t typical, which is always a challenge.
Live vicariously via the experiences of others. “I’m not trying to make you feel terrible about not getting out of the house!” my mother remarked after informing me about her dinner arrangements. Hardly! I was curious about their plans and enjoyed living vicariously through them, looking forward to the day when my husband and I would celebrate either my release from bedrest or the birth of our little one with a meal out… Maybe at Rubio’s or somewhere else fast and inexpensive, but OUT!
Take advantage of the quiet/relaxing moments while they last. This is the one I’ve been trying to concentrate on. While it may be tedious and exhausting, it is also a really relaxing period in my life. When my kid is at preschool and my husband is at work, I may listen to music, read, sleep, or watch TV without feeling guilty about “not doing something.” Those hectic days will return. There will be a baby, and I will be doing dishes, laundry, cooking, and cleaning all over again — for the time being, I am resting.
Cara, thank you very much! Heather had previously written about having a good time while on bedrest, but she was just guessing.
Were you on bedrest at any point throughout your pregnancy? If you’re currently on bedrest, be sure to say hi!
There are many things that can happen during pregnancy. You will be tired, have morning sickness, and of course you will need to rest. Now understand that just because you are pregnant, in no way does that mean you can’t be active – you must still be active to keep your baby safe.. Read more about fun things to do while lying in bed and let us know what you think.
This article broadly covered the following related topics:
- how to stay healthy on bed rest
- bed rest at 6 weeks pregnant
- pregnancy bed rest blogs
- how to survive bed rest
- sleeping too much during pregnancy