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5 things to do before your baby is due

Feb 25, 2019

1. Write Down Your Birth Preferences

I’m sure there are some things you’d like to happen during your birth. By writing down your preferences, it can let your birth support people know what you’d like and help you switch off your thinking brain when you’re in labor. During your pregnancy, spend time exploring all your choices.

When exploring your options for birth, you may like to think about:

  • Your beliefs about birth
  • What kind of environment you would like to birth in (for example; a warm, dimly lit space that is quiet with soft music)
  • Who will be supporting you (for example; your partner’s name, doula, midwife, obstetrician)
  • How you feel about fetal monitoring
  • How you feel about pain relief (for example; if you are intending to labor naturally you could say ‘I intend to use massage, hot water, heat packs, visualisations and the birth pool to cope with labour so please don’t offer medical pain relief unless I ask for it’).

Other Things To Think About Are

  • The use of synthetic oxytocin in the third stage of labour. If you don’t want the injection, be sure to discuss it with your care provider and let them know you’d like a physiological (natural) third stage if everything is going well
  • Skin-to-skin contact
  • Delayed cord clamping
  • The injections offered to the baby such as vitamin K and hepatitis B
  • It is also good to think about cesareans. Even if that is the last thing you are wanting, it is good to explore your options. If a cesarean is required, it is still possible to have delayed cord clamping and often times skin-to-skin contact can be facilitated. It’s also good to talk to your care provider if they know how to assist with vaginal swabbing (read more about that at ‘microbirth’).

2. Get A Massage

Did you know that women who have massages in pregnancy can increase their oxytocin levels (aka; the love hormone)? This means when you go into labour, the body responds better to the natural release of this hormone. It can help labour to progress more smoothly and efficiently. Massage also helps you feel relaxed and calmer and can help your body feel more open

3. Walk Regularly

Regular walks help you feel healthy and build your fitness during pregnancy. Doing exercise releases endorphins (the feel-good hormone) so it helps you feel happier and more positive. It can also release tension and help your muscles become stronger which will help during labour. Walking increases flexibility and helps encourage baby into a good position for birth. Start by doing 15-30mins three times a week and build up to 45-60mins most days.

4. Freeze Some Healthy Meals And Set Up A ‘Meal Train’

During your pregnancy, prepare some nutritious meals that can be frozen. This will help make dinner that bit easier when you are tired and/or breastfeeding your new baby. Popping some home-made soup in the saucepan will provide an easy and nutritious meal.

Warm and easy-to-digest foods like soups, broths and stews will help the new mother to make good breast milk for her baby. You can also ask a friend to set up a ‘meal train’ using Your community would love to help you feel nurtured. There is a beautifully written book called ‘The first forty days’ that contains some lovely nourishing recipe ideas as well as tips for thriving in the postpartum time. I highly recommend it!

5. Pack A Birth Bag

Even if you’re birthing at home, it can be good to have all your supplies in one place. If you’re birthing in a birth centre or a hospital, there are some useful things to consider taking.

You may like to pack:

  • Comfortable clothes like a dress or long shirt to labour in plus underwear
  • Warm socks
  • Swimmers for your partner (in case he/she wants to get in the birth pool)
  • Toiletries including toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, lip balm, maternity pads, nursing pads
  • Music and a speaker
  • Essential oils and a diffuser
  • Massage oils (I like to use sunflower or almond oil as they don’t have much scent, you can add your essential oils like lavender, clary sage and mandarin to a birth mix)
  • Homeopathic arnica and rescue remedy flower essence
  • LED candles for dim lighting
  • Snacks, water and drinks like coconut water
  • Camera
  • Something comforting like your own pillow or favourite blanket
  • Your birth preferences list (enter your details below to receive a ready-to-go birth plan checklist)


Do you want to feel more confident about birth?

Download the free natural birth checklist!
It has practical tips and natural suggestions for the three stages of labor, a packing list for birth, pictures of useful labour positions and helpful hints for partners.


Make sure you download the latest birth plan checklist! It has a packing list for birth, watercolour pictures of useful labour positions, tips for what to do at each stage of labour and advice for partners