Going Back to Work After Baby

Check out the video above for Elaine's tips and tricks for going back to work after baby.

Links and resources we reference in the video:

Find Elaine at ThriveMomma.com. You can get her timeline for preparing to return to work by entering your name and email in the right sidebar.

CLICK HERE to get Elaine's Pump Bag Checklist and other resources for pumping at work.

Birth Plans

Basic birth plan: Have baby.

BOOM. Done. Right?

You don't need a birth plan, but many parents-to-be find the process of creating a plan helpful to discuss options and preferences for labor and delivery of their baby.

Some general tips:

  • Keep it to one page. It's more likely to be read.
  • Take it to your prenatal appointment so your desires can be put on file in case your practitioner cannot attend your birth.
  • Consider a visual plan if that resonates with you.

Example birth plans used by moms I know.

CLICK HERE to read a birth plan aimed at an unmedicated vaginal birth. It includes contingencies for Cesarean birth or if the baby is sick, too.

CLICK HERE to read a birth plan for a sexual abuse survivor. This is a great example of why a birth plan can be so important and empowering.

CLICK HERE for a birth plan for a scheduled Cesarean birth. Her baby was breech, but a belly birth doesn't mean you can't have a say in your experience.

Earth Mama Angel Baby also has a free birth plan checklist.

Or maybe Jeff and Jamie's birth plan is more your style. Sense of humor required. 😉

Lose the Baby Weight


Apologies for the nauseating swaying as I corral my wild nursling for the first few minutes of the video. Thanks for sticking with us!

If you're pregnant or have recently given birth, you're probably thinking about getting back to your pre-baby weight.

  • What is a reasonable expectation for losing weight after giving birth?
  • How can you nourish your body to care for yourself and your baby, especially if you’re nursing?
  • What are the postpartum pitfalls you’ll want to avoid?

Stacy Spensley from Semi-Crunchy Mama and Center Stage Wellness and Kelly Bach from Full Belly Nutrition discuss postpartum nutrition and weight loss.

Where are the handouts mentioned in the video?

Right here!
CLICK HERE to download your healthy snacking tips and tricks
CLICK HERE to download your meal planning tips

Recommended Reading for Pregnancy and Birth

As an information hoarder, I love to read and research new topics. Pregnancy was no different. I polled some friends, filled up my Amazon cart, and cracked the books.

Quick note! These are generally aimed at "natural" childbirth. If you plan to have an epidural or pain management, or end up with a medically necessary Cesarean, that's totally fine! I still think it's good information to have and they address those, as well. I don't have time to judge you, I have to go figure out what my toddler just ate off the floor. Peace.

Here are the books I personally found most helpful:

  • Ina May's Guide to Childbirth is hard to beat. Ina May Gaskin is largely credited with the resurgence of midwifery in the United States and runs a birth center at the Farm commune in Tennessee. Skeptical of a commune resident in prairie skirts telling you about a process that will most likely take place in a hospital? She has authored many papers about childbirth and even has a delivery maneuver named after her. The first half is birth stories which show the wide range of "normal" birth experiences.
  • The Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth by Henci Goer was really helpful to me. The author starts out stating that she clearly has a bias, but her bias is based on the conclusions drawn from all the research she did. That's what she covers in the book. It's not about telling you what to do, but offers the studies and statistics that help you make an informed decision about your care.
  • The Other Baby Book: A Natural Approach to Baby's First Year isn't written by well-known parenting experts, but it's not far off from the book I would want to write. Two attachment parenting moms offer an easy-to-read guide that validates following your instincts and back it up with science. It's not perfect, but I found it helpful.
  • Birthing from Within: An Extra-Ordinary Guide to Childbirth Preparation by Pam England is the most "woo woo" of these, but I found it fascinating. There are also Birthing From Within childbirth prep classes available. She studies the circumstances which cause traumatic birth experiences and works backwards to help you prevent them by unpacking your fears around childbirth. I often suggest getting this from the library first in case it's too much.
  • Real Food for Mother and Baby by Nina Planck was an interesting read. Though the author is a follower of the Weston A. Price Foundation ("the raw milk people") who insist no vegetarian diet (mine) can possibly be healthy, I enjoyed Planck's grounded view of eating well during pregnancy to nourish you and your baby. She advocates a whole food diet without being overbearing and adds in her own pregnancy experiences for dimension.
  • The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding by La Leche League International is the go-to recommendation for nursing moms. I have not yet read it, but breastfeeding isn't completely instinctive or easy. If you plan to nurse, more support is always better!

No time (or attention span) for books? Here are some websites that offer great information:

  • Birth Without Fear posts a beautiful array of birth stories, and show that there isn't a right or a wrong way to meet your baby.
  • Evidence Based Birth offers information related to popular questions about pregnancy and childbirth with studies and citations to back it up.
  • KellyMom is an amazing breastfeeding resource which covers a number of topics and has plenty of outside links as well.
  • Pregnant Chicken, in addition to being pee-your-pants hilarious, also gave me some of the best advice I read during my pregnancy.

Baby-Led Weaning

If your baby is at or nearing the time to eat solid foods, you may be confused about the right approach.

  • Should you start at 4 months or 6 months?
  • With rice cereal or whole foods?
  • Purees or finger foods?

Your pediatrician may not be giving you updated advice. Learn what the current recommendations are and what you may want to consider in choosing the right path for you and your baby.

Check out a concise and info-packed 30-minute summary, or find the resources for the talk below the video.

When should I start solids?

How should I give my baby solids?

What should I feed my baby?

Other resources

Want more info?

Intro to Baby Led Weaning, Wednesday, March 23

If you want more details and time for live Q&A, join me on March 23rd from the comfort of your own home!

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