Today’s guest post is brought to you by Ashley from disabledparents.org:
Being a soon-to-be parent can be stressful. However, living with a disability can add a layer of additional anxiety, but it doesn’t have to get in your way of becoming a multi-tasking master of parenthood. Like any new mom or dad, you have to adjust all areas of your life to provide the best care for your new addition. Start with these important parent prep steps.
Max Out Safety and Accessibility in Your Home
Being a parent is an experience like no other, but it is also one that will keep you on the go. Diaper changes, nap times, and feedings mean you need to be able to move around your home without worrying about hazards for you or your child. Simple adjustments, like these super helpful suggestions from RedFin, are all you really need to make sure your home is accessible for your new role as a busy parent. Swap tricky steps for a ramp, change standard door hinges to expandable options, and use skid-resistant flooring to keep falls from tripping you up. Be sure to do some standard baby-proofing as well to put your mind at ease.
Invest in Baby Products That Fit Your Needs and Abilities
Putting together a new nursery can be exciting for soon-to-be parents, and you can have a lot of fun creating a calm, safe space to nurture your child. You’ll definitely want to pick up some nursery essentials, such as a crib, changing tables, and toys to keep your little one learning. Before you buy any baby products, read through online reviews so you will know the best options for you. You may also want to research mobility adjusted baby necessities to make caring for your child easier on your physical health. Adaptive cribs, strollers, and carriers can be game changers for new parents with limited mobility, so invest in whatever you need to feel confident about attending to your child’s needs.
Take Care Some Essential Financial Planning
If you are pregnant or adopting, you already know the high costs of raising a child. As of last year, that total was well over $200,000, and you can expect your expenses to rapidly increase as time goes by. But savvy parents can be well-prepared for those costs by tackling a few crucial financial planning steps before they welcome a new baby into their lives. The most important of these two may be to set up a family budget and take care of any estate planning or insurance needs. Life insurance is a must for new parents, but you should make sure your child is covered by health insurance as well. Most plans, including Medicaid, require you to add your child within the first 30 days of birth or adoption, so don’t miss out on this important deadline.
Know That Your Worrying Is Totally Normal
As a new parent, you have a lot to adjust to. Suddenly, you are solely responsible for the well-being of another tiny human being. You may wonder how you will adapt and how you will be able to juggle your role as a parent with the needs of your health. Managing new parent stress is never easy, but you have to find positive outlets for your worries to prevent them from evolving into full-fledged anxiety. All parents have the same concerns and you will find your own way to nurture and care for your child. Seek out help from other parents and experts if you need it, but ultimately, have the confidence to know that you are making choices that are right for you. This is even true if they are not the same choices that are right for others.
If you are living with a disability, you already know how to overcome adversity and challenge. Apply those same strengths to your new role as a parent, and make a few changes to your home and life, and you’ll have less to worry about when your new baby arrives.
Author Ashley uses DisabledParents.org to help other parents with disabilities manage the challenges of parenthood.