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27 Postpartum Essentials You Need to Guarantee "Happy" Survival

Postpartum essentials you need for happy survival. That's a mouthful. On June 9, at 1:45 p.m. (9 days before my due date), I gave birth to my first and only child, my son, Kingston. What’s hilarious is that I really thought I had prepared well for his birth and had most things ready. Boy was I wrong! Turns out all the books I’d read and all the classes I’d dragged my husband to were just warm ups for the real thing.

Below, I’ve made a list of all the things I wished I’d known about postpartum happy survival. If you’re pregnant and about to be a first time mom or about to have another child, you need these 27 postpartum essentials to guarantee happy survival. Before we get into my recommendations, here is a little about what the postpartum means.

What Does Postpartum Mean?

The postpartum period or the word postpartum, sometimes postnatal, describes the period starting right after child birth and lasts for about six weeks to eight weeks, even though it can last for up to a year after giving birth. The word postpartum or the phrase postpartum period is used to explain the period of time within which a mother is recovering from child birth. Now that we've clarified the term postpartum a little, let's dive into the postpartum recovery kit supplies you need to survive this transitional period.

What Postpartum Recovery Kit Supplies Do I Need?

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2 Pieces of Postpartum Recovery Survival Advice I Wished I’d Taken

When you're pregnant, there is no shortage of advice and tips to guarantee happy survival. I am an educator in a building full of "sisters and mothers" who have braved motherhood and gave me helpful tips and pointers. I took several of their tips to heart, such as having a large amount of bibs and burp cloths, trying to rest when the baby rested and knowing when to ask people not to come to visit. However, ignorance made me not pay attention to some other tips they shared. Others, I had no clue about until it was too late. I hope to save you from some of the trouble I could’ve avoided to help make your postpartum experience as happy as possible.

1. Toughen Up Your Nipples

This is the one of the first postpartum tips that I received when I told coworkers I planned to breastfeed. I specifically remember one telling me to use a rough washcloth to toughen up my nipples prior to the baby coming. I heard her, but wondered why in the world I would want to “toughen” up my nipples. I’m sure everything will take care of itself. For the most part I was right, but for the wrong reasons. There was no need to toughen up my nipples, but there are some things that mothers can do to prepare for breastfeeding. For anyone who has nursed a baby and experienced issues, I'm sure you wish you had all the advice possible, if it would have made the experience easier. My son initially had difficulty latching because my nipples were flat.

Even when the latch is perfect, the repetitive feedings really wear on sensitive nipples, so preparing your nipples for breastfeeding, before the baby arrives, is very important. Bleeding and achy nipples, when it’s time for the next feed, are no fun. You want your baby happy and fed, but you want happy nipples too. Now, please don’t take this an an anti breastfeeding message, because I happily nursed my son for 2 years, 4 months and 9 days, and would do it all again in a second, but I suffered through the early months and if I had been aware of some of this great postpartum recovery advice, it could’ve saved me much pain.

2. Don’t get too many bottles

As you’re preparing for your angel to arrive, there’s the temptation to rack up on bottles for feeding. Your mind will convince you that you need to have enough to get by when the sink is full or the dishwasher hasn’t been run. Take my advice, don’t do it. My son had issues latching at first, so he couldn’t even have a bottle for the first four months and then when he could, I had a ton of bottles that I had purchased using Ibotta : Dr. Brown’s, Latch, Medela, Avent, Tommy Tippee, you name it, I had it.

The problem was the only bottle my son would take was Avent, so all those other bottles just sat around collecting dust. A better plan is to buy one or two of each (sometimes you'll get quite a few as samples), try them out and once you’ve discovered which your baby prefers, then by all means, buy all the bottles.

14 Postpartum Recovery Kit Essentials for Mom's Happy Survival

3. Padsicles

I read about these on Pinterest when I was researching about postpartum recovery kit essentials and on a whim decided to make them. Smartest unintentional decision ever!. A padsicle is exactly what it sounds like a frozen mixture on a pad (sanitary napkin) for your recently traumatized lady parts. This is postpartum happy survival at its finest.

Ladies, let me tell you, they were lifesavers! I believe in them so much that I make and gift them to close friends and family when they have a baby. I either bring them to the hospital or to their house. It worked wonders in helping me heal after delivery. Without oversharing, it especially helped when the pain relievers were wearing off and it wasn’t time for another dose.

Pro tip: Put a towel underneath you to avoid a mess as your padsicle melts.

Where Can I Buy Mesh Underwear for My Postpartum Recovery Kit and Do I Need Them?