The arrival of a new baby brings excitement, anxiety, and fear into a couple’s lives. It doesn’t matter if it’s your first baby or your third, adding a child to the family changes the dynamics of your couple relationship. So what can new parents do to relax and snag a much-needed break from their concerns before baby comes?
Plan a babymoon!
Originally defined as a time following the baby’s birth when new parents could bond with the baby, the term “babymoon” is more commonly known as a couple’s vacation taken before the baby arrives.
If you and your spouse are expecting a baby and one or both of you are feeling a bit overwhelmed, a little time away may be exactly what you need.
Benefits of a Babymoon
So the benefits of a vacation are probably pretty obvious—you’re on your own schedule, you’re away from work, and you have plenty of time to relax. But one of the primary benefits of a babymoon is to spend time together as a couple. Babymoons include a chance for both partners to:
You may be so busy that you haven’t had an opportunity to talk about how you’re feeling about the new baby. You’re excited, you’re scared, and you have so many questions that you feel like you’re going to burst. A babymoon provides a chance for you both to talk about these feelings, away from the stress of home. Giving birth and raising a baby are stressful, but couples who talk about how they’re feeling and how they’ll handle the upcoming challenges form a stronger partnership that will make them better partners and parents.
Getting away can also be an opportunity for you to sit and talk about your future and your past. (Talk about the baby only if you want to.) With the addition of a baby to your family circle, your world will soon revolve around diapers, bottles, and praying for sleep. Use a babymoon as an opportunity to be together and reconnect as a couple before the start of this rewarding, but hectic time.
Use your babymoon to connect on an intimate level before the baby arrives. You may want to massage each other, cuddle, or hold hands on your way to dinner. However you choose to be romantic, remember that it is important to keep intimacy in your relationship. Make a plan for intimacy. Planning ahead creates desire and allows you to focus on your partner. The anticipation is also good practice for the precious alone time the two of you will have after baby’s arrival.
Slow Things Down
Take time away from putting the crib together, choosing a pediatrician, and talking about discipline philosophies to relax and be together. Disconnect from the stress of preparing for baby and engage in some real laughter. See a movie, go places that you can’t take a baby, do adult things, and have fun.
Savor the Pregnancy
The ideal time for a babymoon is the second trimester. Hopefully, you’re over the morning sickness and still able to travel. (All pregnant women should consult with the doctor about travel during pregnancy and look into local medical facilities, just in case!) Adding to your family is a special time, and it’s nice just to step back and enjoy the moment.
Whether you have a weekend or a few weeks to spare, a babymoon is a great idea for new and veteran parents alike. It will allow you to reconnect as a couple before the flurry of post-baby care and sleeplessness where you may feel like ships passing in the night. Take time to have fun, enjoy shared interests, talk about your concerns and feelings, and savor the miracle of pregnancy.