You're elated! The result is positive and you're going to have a baby! In my experience, this also comes with the heavy realisation that you are now going to be responsible for a new human being and there are important 'adulting' decisions to be made.
You'll see lots of lists, articles and blogs on this subject, and to circumvent all that reading for you, I've listed the 7 most important things you need to know in the early days
1. Get a Will
Having your affairs in order simply makes sense. Its a good opportunity for you and your partner to get some clarity on what is important for your families future. There are lots of great online services, with free templates and over the phone consultations to help you through the jargon.
2. Shout out for hand-me-downs
This is almost an Australian Rite of Passage - to pass on things you no longer need to those who do within your community. When people find out your are pregnant you'll find you receive lots of kind offers. Accept everything! Forward on things you might not need to other friends or your local Op Shop.
Keep a look out for items that you only need for a short time that you can borrow/rent. These include the baby car capsule, bassinet and walker which only get used for a few short months.
3. Get your name down for Childcare
Many Childcare facilities operate on a first come, first served basis. The sooner you get your application in the queue, the quicker you'll get a place. To expedite this process, put your name down at 3-5 local centres first. Then when you have time (and feel up to it) go and visit each of them to determine which ones your prefer.
On this subject, consider what works best for you in terms of location - near home or near work? I've found one near home, which was easier to manage when I was on maternity leave the second time. It has also meant that when my work location changed, I didn't need to change the children's routine. On the flip side if you do commute long distances, close to your work will lessen your time away from your baby.
4. Get some Brigitte Jones Underwear
Yep, its time to get comfortable! I found that seams, lace and anything pretty just drove me crazy in those first few months. Make yourself as comfortable as possible with underwear that doesn't rub, annoy or make you feel restricted. My friend Alice swears by K-mart maternity pants for their affordability and most importantly comfort.
5. Get your body in order
Your body is now very busy with a passenger on board, and you'll be physically tired because your body's resources are now busy growing arms and legs. Not only is your physical health important for pregnancy and birth, but so is your emotional well being. General wellness will aid your recovery and create a good platform of reserves for those first few months when you'll need it most.
Dr Amanda Waaldyt has one of the most comprehensive pre-natal programs I've come across that is both practical and affordable. From her exclusive range of Organic Wellness Teas designed for new Mums, to a series of downloadable Yoga sessions, she has exactly what you need for a holistic and nurturing pregnancy journey.
6. Get your Finances in Order
Planning financially for your baby's birth and beyond is an important part of the preparation. Having your finances in order will aid your emotional well being and reduce stress on your relationship. Remember that when baby brain sets in, thinking about money can bring about an extra set of challenges that you won't need.
Erica Gilbert at The Income Organisers has a range of achievable options to get your finances in order for your new addition.
7. Determine your Maternal Health Care - and make bookings!
Whether you choose public or private health care, you still need to visit your GP as a priority to talk through your options. They will provide you a list of local service providers and the relevant referrals. You'll also need to have a series of blood tests done to be ready for your subsequent appointments.
Consider the location of your Maternal Health Care and the ease of getting to and from that location. Ideally you want to be able to do your appointments without taking too much leave from work (so you can save it for later). Also ask where they perform their Ultrasounds (onsite or different location), and if they have Pathology nearby.
Don't presume that if you are going to have Private Health Care that you will automatically get into your preferred Doctor. You'll have to check on their availability as they only accept a certain number of patients.
Finally, there are a million things to buy, read and get your head across (well slight exaggeration but there is a lot to do). The positive is that you'll have 30+ weeks to work through your list, and no doubt you'll get loads of advice along the way, both the unsolicited and the invited kind.
At the heart of Little Minx is my genuine desire to help new Mumas by removing the stress and decision making around every products you'll need for your baby. By creating bundles of only tried, tested and loved natural products, you'll find everything you need to make life easier.
Go gently, be kind to yourself. You've got this babe.