Before I dive into a pretty light hearted post about the "bright side" of being put on bed rest, I want to be clear about a couple of things. Kyle and I feel eternally grateful to have been given the opportunity to have children. Yes I've been put on bed rest and yes it is really freaking inconvenient. However, there are far too many couples in this world longing to start a family of their own but can't -- that's just not fair. We have a happy, healthy 17 month old daughter and our unborn son is doing juuussst fine. That reality is not lost on us.
Ok. So, at this stage in the game I am nearly 36 weeks pregnant and have been on "bed rest" for about six weeks. (Read how it all started here.) When bed rest first became a topic of conversation at my OB appointment, dozens of thoughts began racing through my mind. "How does one do bed rest with a toddler? Is that even legal? Well, that's why kids have two parents...oh wait! Army. HA! Better call my mom STAT! What the hell am I supposed to do with myself until baby is born???" Etc.
As usual, it is quick and easy to see alllllll the ways being on bed rest sucks, but lets not harp on the negative. The doctors felt bed rest was necessary, for not only the safety of my baby, but for myself as well--that's reason enough to find the silver lining, right?
All but the first week of my bed rest sentencing has been spent at home. Although, I think whether you are on bed rest at home or in the hospital, the perks are quite similar.
Here's how I see things...
one || Online shopping. Uhhh duh! What else did you think I'd start with?! You can verify with Kyle if you feel the need, but I have certainly been using and abusing this bed rest "perk." Can you say "proceed to checkout?" Don't mind if I do... ;)
two || TV/YouTube. Let's take this time to get good and acquainted with Netflix and YouTube. I'm proud to say I'm fully up to date with all of my favorite YouTube subscriptions and started watching Scandal. #coolmomalert #notreally
three || The actual rest part. We know there will be a point in the not so distant future with a new baby and those seemingly endless sleepless nights when I'll think "phew! I miss being on bed rest! I'm spent." I've been trying to think about my future self and find some kind of appreciation for this "down time."
four || Bonding time. Even if this is your first child, but especially if it isn't, this is a fantastic opportunity to bond with your unborn baby! Sitting around all day has provided me with the opportunity to cherish those kicks, jabs, rolls and hiccups. I'm so thankful for that!
five || Spousal appreciation. Kyle has stepped up to the plate in a big way during my time on bed rest. He has played the role of both mom and dad while still going to work and without complaining...much ;) This is what teamwork is all about in a marriage. Plus, I'd like to think that my being out of commission has also helped Kyle to appreciate the things I do around the house and for our family. (At least that's what I'm telling myself, ok?)
six || Time with family/friends. Hopefully you are also in a position to be uplifted by friends, family and loved ones during this time. Whether they are helping with childcare and housework or simply providing emotional and psychological support, enjoy being surrounded by these people! I know that asking for help is hard, but in this case, there is simply no choice. Choose to see the positive in this aspect of bed rest and realize that normal life will be back soon enough. In the mean time, I'm surrounded by people who care about me... not too shabby!
seven || Organization/Planning. Ok, so I can't organize the linen closet or clean out the garage, but I can "clean up" in other ways. Do you need to move all of your computer's photos to an external hard drive? What about rework your family's budget/finances? Have a family vacation brewing for after baby is born? PLAN AWAY! Nothin' but time baby, nothin' but time.
eight || Hobbies/Education. I have tried to focus more energy on my blog since being put on bed rest. Blogging has offered me a positive and productive distraction. Whether it's taking an online class or reading up on photography, whatever you're interested in (that can be done from a seated/laying position) do it! Enjoy it!
nine || Get to check on baby more often. During a normal pregnancy, it is not uncommon to see your baby at 20 weeks and then not again until you are holding them in your arms! That isn't typically the case for those of us on bed rest. For instance, in the past six weeks alone I've seen my baby on an ultrasound at least three times, not to mention hearing his beautiful heartbeat during those twice weekly NSTs. Major perk in my book!
ten || Keeping yourself and baby safe. That is the entire point, right? ;)
Have you been on bed rest? How did you make your time suck less? Share some of your advice!