At 27 weeks pregnant, I was put on strict medical bed rest. This meant no standing on my feet for more than 15 minutes in an hour and no sitting (with feet flat on the floor) for longer than 30 minutes. I had to keep my feet up and pelvic pointing away from the floor. Gravity had threatened the livelihood of my two unborn children.
Bed rest sounds like a welcome break but the reality is that it is not. Not at all. Ask anyone who’s been on bed rest and they’ll say the same thing. I guarantee it. One minute you find yourself preoccupied and mentally stimulated with work obligations and deadlines, and the next, the only decision you are making all day is what to have for dinner.
If you are anything like me and enjoy having a busy schedule then you’ll find yourself singing, “I am slowing going crazy one two three four five six switch” by the second week of bed rest. It felt alien to me to just sit on the couch day after day (believe me, there is only so much television a person can tolerate). So, I grabbed my laptop and drafted up my own weekly bed rest schedule. It gave me purpose and direction again and it helped to make the days and weeks fly by until the babies made their grand appearance.
I hope that you, too, find this schedule helpful. Print it. Post it on your fridge. Use it as your guide but don’t be surprised when friends start showing up at your door with decaffeinated coffee in hand to hang out and keep you company. Friends are great aren’t they? 🙂
Monday Netflix Marathon
This is your chance to catch up on your favourite Netflix series. And if you are really ambitious, you might even be able to get through a whole series in one day! Caution: Spouses may become upset if you continue (and finish), while they were at work, a series that you had started together. My suggestion is to fight the urge to press play on that House of Cards episode you both had started Sunday night, and leave it until he/she gets home. Instead, flip through the enormous collection that Netflix has to offer and find something that would appeal to your taste, and maybe not to your significant others.
Take It Up Tuesday
I had a friend come over with colouring books and pencil crayons and it was the most thoughtful and appropriate gift anyone could have bought me. I forgot how meditative and enjoyable colouring could be! I also used this time to take up arm knitting and attempted to make chunky blankets for Christmas gifts. Have you ever wanted to learn a new language or meditate? YouTube has some great instructional videos so take advantage of this unique opportunity to focus on blossoming your new hobby.
Write It Out Wednesday
My blog started while I was on bed rest. I have always turned to my journal to reflect on what was happening in my life, but I knew that telephone conversations were going to be rare when the girls arrived. So I thought I’d start a blog as a means to share this journey with our family, near and far. Writing is incredibly therapeutic so I encourage you to put pen to paper and let your mind do the rest. You might even surprise yourself with a poem (who knew you had it in you?), or a song. If you want to be productive and check things off your “to do list”, you could finish writing those thank you cards from your baby shower, or have the shopping list ready for your spouse when he/she gets home from work.
Treat Yourself Thursday
You might not be able to make it to your local hairdresser, but if you have a friend who is willing to come over and blow dry your hair, take full advantage. Every girl feels better after a good blow out. And if you are able to, why not give yourself a manicure and pedicure. It will be a long time before you get one of those after the babies get here, so soak it up now. Thursday is your day to spoil yourself. A facial. A hand massage. Do your makeup. Whatever tickles your fancy, just sit back and enjoy 🙂
Fun Friday Nights
Friday’s don’t have to be lock down, lights out early nights until after the babies get here, so until then invite your family and friends over, open bags of Ketchup chips, order pizza and put on a comedy show, watch a movie or play scrabble. Just because you’re on bed rest doesn’t have to feel like you’re in prison. And although you might not be able to go very far, that doesn’t mean that the party can’t come to you. Yes, you’ve been home all week but Friday nights is when everyone else is letting loose so enjoy it with them (staying within safe pregnancy boundaries, of course).
Who says you can’t still enjoy some retail therapy? Hello online shopping!! Skip the busy parking lots and malls and pull out the laptop and credit card from the comfort of your warm bed. Shopping hasn’t ever been more fun! Find some local small businesses, fill your cart, check out and a couple days later find your package waiting for you at your front door. It’s a wonderful thing! You’ll be doing lots of online shopping even after you have your twins so you might as well start now, right?
Sleeping In Sunday
Use this time to bank those zzz’s because you’ll need it when the babies arrive and you’re waking up every 2 hours to feed them. Just sleep. Cuddle with your significant other and the dog. Enjoy the quietness of the house and the fact that neither one of you have anywhere to be. Relish these Sundays because, take it from me, you’ll soon find yourself saying, “Do you remember the days when we used to just lay in bed and had no one rushing us out to start our day?”. Your days are numbered my friend, so enjoy it now.
Bed rest is not enjoyable. I get it. Your mind has been a constant buzz and your body has physically been darting from one place to another for so long. Now, you are told to stop. Freeze. So it will feel uncomfortable and mentally challenging at first because you haven’t slowed down like this in a very long time. But remember that you are Mama Bear now, and you are doing this to keep those babies in you for as long as you can. Visualize them growing strong and healthy. Feel each kick and flutter. This is a temporary and necessary step in your pregnancy journey, and you will survive.
Click here to download The Diaper Duo Bed Rest Survival Schedule