At my group midwife appointment last week, the facilitators—a midwife and a helper—were very concerned about food.
“Who will cook meals?” they asked. “Will friends or family bring you food? Has anyone frozen food ahead of time?”
The focus on edibles surprised me, but maybe it shouldn’t have. The first few weeks with a newborn, they explained, will leave only enough time for nursing and the most minimal of rest. You’ll have no energy, time or desire to whip up dinner, they said.
Plus, eating enough is vital to recover from labor and to produce milk for your new baby. Nursing moms should eat about 500 calories beyond what they did pre-pregnancy, most experts suggest.
So this weekend I launched myself into the project of feeding myself in the future. The tally for Saturday and Sunday’s work:
Our freezer is now stocked with individual portions of a few meals and snacks that can be eaten one-handed (for the multitasking mom I’ll become!).
Case in point: A few weekends ago, my mom visited Portland to take some maternity photos at Eric’s winery. The plan was to grab dinner afterwards, but Eric had to stay later than expected. When my patience and blood sugar bottomed out, I knew we had to get food immediately. But when Eric asked what or where I wanted to eat, I was immobilized.
We ended up going to the Red Hills Market for wine and herbed olive oil and, after a few (hundred?) calories, I could function again.
Knowing this, I’m trying to plan ahead. We have takeout menus for Laughing Planet and the Green Wok handy. I also made a short list of recipes (note to self: expand on this) I love and will eat at pretty much any time.
- Goddess bowls, from Oh She Glows
- Thai peanut noodle salad, from The Great American Detox Diet (actually, almost any recipe in here is amazing)
- Thai salad with roasted chickpeas, which I made for dinner on Sunday and actually had seconds—the first time I’ve gone back for more food in, oh, almost a month!
I figure I’ll add to this, but it gives me a good tool for when family and friends visit, want to help but don’t know what to cook. When I’m exhausted, near-delirious, struggling or just plain hungry, then, I’ll have some edible options.
What did you eat once your baby arrived? What are your favorite, easy summer meals? Help me out!