Finding out you’re pregnant, whether it’s for the first or the fifth time, is a very exciting moment in any couple’s life. But once the initial excitement has subsided, the realisation that the next nine months will be jam-packed with preparation for baby’s arrival can be very daunting indeed. Knowing your options can help you feel more at ease as you face this new chapter of your family’s life. So, if you’re a parent-to-be or a new parent, PakMag is here to help with our A to Z guide of all things fertility to first birthday in Townsville!
In Townsville, we’re lucky enough to have a great annual Early Years Expo run by Townsville City Council, so planning your pregnancy, birth and baby’s first year has never been easier. This year, the Early Years Expo takes place on Sunday, 11 March at Townsville Stadium. With health professionals, early childhood educators, parental support groups, tiny tot activity groups and more, you’ll leave well equipped to deal with this new chapter of your family’s life. The event also includes two Welcoming Babies Ceremonies, a special event where babies are officially welcomed to their city of birth by the Mayor of Townsville. The next
Welcoming Babies Ceremony will be held on 9th September, so make sure you register if your baby will be born before then.
I’m pregnant, now what?
One of the first things to consider is your healthcare and birthing options, and a big consideration when it comes to this is whether you want to go public or private.
If you go via the public system, your first step is to visit your GP, who will guide you through your pregnancy, including referring you for scans and tests. In Townsville, you will have the option of giving birth in the Townsville Birth Centre at Townsville Hospital or at home with a midwife present (ask your GP about this option as it’s not available for everyone).
The private system will allow you to choose your own obstetrician who will look after you throughout your pregnancy and during your labour. If you’d like to choose this route, you will likely give birth at the Mater Private Hospital which is a fantastic option.
With 21 maternity rooms and five birth suite, as well as four operating theatres, the dedicated Women’s Unit at the Mater Private hospital is well equipped to care for you before, during and after birth. A full suite of services are provided, including antenatal classes, pre-admission clinic, postnatal clinic, photography, Look@MyBaby live internet feed, specialist breast feeding consultants and more. The Women’s Unit also accommodates partners wishing to stay overnight. For more information on this option, visit www.matertsv.org.au
There are also other professionals that you may want to consider too, including doulas and hypnobirthing.
What else should I prepare?
Between painting the nursery, buying the pram and maternity wear shopping, the list of what you need to prepare before baby arrives can feel endless. Breaking this down into three categories can make it feel more manageable: home, baby, self.
Make sure you prepare your home for baby’s arrival. This, of course, includes preparing your baby’s room and baby proofing but you should also consider purchasing things that will make your life with a new born a little easier. A comfy feeding chair, a state of the art baby monitor, a night time baby ‘shusher’ and baby food maker.
You can also hire baby equipment which is great if you’re holidaying or you don’t want to splurge on buying your own. With hire periods of up to 6 months, companies such as Hire for Baby offer a range of products such as capsules, breast pumps and cots and for PakMag readers, there’s 5 per cent off! Simply visit www.hireforbaby.com and enter the code PAKMAG for your discount. Plus, if you hire a Medela Symphony breast pump and decide to buy one, you’ll receive 30 per cent off!
In terms of what you need to buy for baby, our advice is to not go overboard and buy months’ worth of clothing; you don’t know how big or small your baby will be, how fast they’ll grow, or how much stuff you’ll be given by friends and family. For the shopping you do need to do, we recommend heading to Elle J in the Domain Centre to shop for clothes, toys and accessories. Plus you can pick up some great maternity wear items for yourself too.
Make sure you also have items to wash and change baby too, but just like the clothes, don’t buy too many nappies before you know if your baby will fit into them!
With a bundle of joy growing inside you, it can sometimes be easy to focus all of your attention on making sure baby is ok and well-prepared for. This is even more the case when baby arrives. Looking after your little one takes precedence and thinking about your own needs is the furthest thing from you mind.
Repeat after me, “I will look after myself”!
First and foremost, look after your body. Exercise such as Pilates is brilliant for pregnancy and there are a number of studios in Townsville to choose from.
And finally, don’t forget some retail therapy for yourself! Investing in a maternity dress or two can not only make you feel like you have something comfy to throw on, but it can also give you some self-confidence that you may be lacking. Check out Elle J in the Domain Centre for some beautiful items, or check out Queen Bee who have offered PakMag readers a 5% discount on maternity wear, so head to www.queenbee.com.au and use code PM18.
Baby is here!
So, your baby has arrived, now what? Well, aside from the day in, day out routine of feeding, changing and sleeping, there are some other things that you could consider at this point.
If your baby isn’t sleeping well, services such as a sleep consultant may be the key to a peaceful night’s sleep. Townsville has a number of professionals who can help your situation to have your baby sleeping like, well, a baby!
Why not opt for some physical development time at Inflatable Kingdom Townsville? This great indoor play area offers an area for little ones and at $11 for a two-and-a-half-hour session (for under 5s), it’s an affordable way to spend some time in between naps! Visit them at Unit 4 / 78 – 88 Harvey Range Road.
For some free fun, City Libraries offers a range of classes including Baby Rhyme Time, StoryTime and Toddle Time to entertain and engage your little one in an environment aimed at developing your child’s pre-literacy and social skills. Every week at Flinders Street, Thuringowa Central and Aitkenvale, the libraries offer free classes for little ones. Check out www.whatson.townsville.qld.gov.au for more details.
So, congratulations on your bundle of joy and good luck! There is obviously much more to learn about what to expect and what to do but we hope this little guide to what’s available in your area has steered you in the right direction!