I recently had my third little girl and came home from the hospital to our “new normal”. For every mom who has survived the newborn phase, you know it is a stage of exhaustion and sleep deprivation, all while falling deeply in love with your little one!
I found that my “pregnancy brain” quickly transitioned into “newborn/nursing brain” and I needed all the help I could get to remember everything. So here are some apps that helped me in those first days at home with my newborn! Some you may already have on your phone, since they are not exclusively for moms!
1. Sprout- Keep track of nursing/pumping/bottles
You realize right away, even in the hospital, that your life will revolve around feeding your baby for the new few days and weeks. The nurses and doctors start asking you right away how long you nursed and how the baby latched and so on. I had to write everything down, because I just could NOT remember when I last fed her, which side, how long, etc. I checked out a few apps to help me with this, and settled on Sprout. It has a handy time, so you don’t have to keep track of how long you’ve been nursing. It also has tabs for bottles and pumping. This kept me sane the first few days.
Along the same lines, I needed a system to remember my meds at certain times. I am not one to take a lot of medications normally, but after my c-section it was a must. They sent me home with four medications, all with different dosages and time frames. I started out writing down when my next dose would come, but then quickly switched to using the basic alarm app on my iPhone. I would just set an alarm for my next feeding, and my next dose of each medication. This kept me organized.
Even as a third time mom, I loved reading all the articles and posts on the BabyCenter app! It made the nursing times go by quickly and answered some of my questions. It also transitions from pregnancy to newborn info seamlessly. Now instead of “You are 39 weeks pregnant,” it sends me emails that say “Your newborn is 1 week old!” I loved it.
Now, this requires some explanation because if you know about Fitbits, they are mainly used for tracking steps. Right after labor and delivery, you will not be taking any record number of steps! Actually, quite the opposite, you will be advised to rest and relax and limit your activity for a while.
So why did I enjoy the Fitbit app as a mom of a newborn? The sleep tracker! This was super interesting to me. It tracks your sleep time, awake time, and even differentiates between light and deep sleep. It was a little discouraging, to be honest, at first when it tracked only an hour or two at a time of sleep, with little deep sleep, during those first few days. But as the baby grew and slept longer, it was exciting to show my husband, “Look! I slept for 5 hours straight for the first time in 4 weeks!”
I love Shutterfly photo service, for their cheap prints and their creative photo books! I found myself uploading my many, many pictures of my newborn onto Shutterfly in the middle of the night, and ordering prints so I had some to show to the visitors that would stop by!
Another way I used this app was to get wallet sized prints of our new family of 5 to put in thank you notes! I find that thank you notes are not very exciting unless they include a photo, so I printed a bunch of small wallet sized photos to pop in the thank you notes, and everyone loved it!
6. Shopping list
Again, this was an app that I used and loved prior to having a baby, but found super useful in the days and weeks after baby! The key to using this app is to get your spouse to use it too. It syncs between the two of you, making grocery shopping super easy. We don’t have to text anymore on the way to the store, we just add what we need to the shopping list app and the other person sees it. It was super helpful right after having the baby because I was not allowed to drive for two weeks, and my husband was right back to work a few days after the baby. So I was stuck at home (which drove me nuts!), and couldn’t just bop over and pick up what I needed from the grocery store. I would just add my items to the app, and he would get them whenever he stopped at the store. Super helpful!
So these were my favorite apps for the time period right after having a baby! What would you add to my list? What was useful for you?