Here is a question for those of you with babies. . .
“What’s in your diaper bag?”
You may be asking yourself, why does she want to know this – her kids are teenagers!??
That’s it exactly! My kids are way, way, way out of diapers and well on their way out of high school and I am out of touch on the new stuff for babies. When I get invited to a baby shower, I have no idea what a new parent wants or needs. Most of the stuff I thought was cool when I had babies has been replaced by newer products. But, I wonder, are they better?
I asked my friend at work, Jeff Beam, a few questions. Jeff’s beautiful wife, Kelly, had just given birth to their baby girl, Lynnox, a few weeks prior. I had a lovely conversation with this sleep-deprived first time father on his first week back to work. He gave me some insightful, however sleepy, answers.
MM: What were your first impressions of becoming a parent?
JB: I was blissfully ignorant. I felt ready, for sure. I thought, “this really isn’t that bad, my baby is great!” Then, the sleep deprivation set in. I went from thinking; this is magic to what the hell is happening?
MM: Have you found any baby item particularly helpful or useful at this point?
JB: We were given a small backpack with compartments from the hospital, a good supply of diapers and a changing pad. So far, that has been very helpful.
MM: What is your favorite gift you have received for baby?
JB: For me, it’s the Boppy. We use it constantly.
MM: They still have those? I loved mine!
JB: It’s great! We also received a rocking chair that is perfect for Kelly. She sits in it as she is breastfeeding. My wife’s comfort is most important.
MM: What is the best piece of advice you received when you were expecting that has proved to be most helpful?
JB: I can’t remember right now, everything is foggy! But my friends have told me that taking care of a baby is easy. When they cry, they need something. It is like I am putting together a puzzle. It’s just a matter of figuring out which piece of the puzzle I am missing.
MM: Do you have any advice, based on your experience so far, to give to other new parents?
JB: Always have a change of clothes and plenty of diapers! (MM – for those “explosions!” Right! I’ll never forget that!) To new fathers, I would tell them what I do is remember my responsibility is my wife. Making sure Kelly is okay is my job. We are a tag team. I am ready to step in. Take the time off and stay home from work for those first few weeks.
MM: Is there anything you need now, other than sleep?
JB: We could use some help with meals, we are both exhausted and too tired to cook!
My (unofficial) advice to Jeff. . . if you think you are too tired to cook now – wait until you have three teenagers!!! Seriously, have you heard of ordering in? It’s great!
Officially, it was an honor to talk to Jeff. He was in love with fatherhood. He was in love with baby Lynnox and most importantly, even more in love with his wife. He is a wonderful father (and diaper changer!)
I was glad to hear that The Boppy is still a favorite for new parents. It is a great product. Way better than using a pillow. That’s what we did back in the day, you know. When my nephew was born, he was the first grandchild and there hadn’t been a baby in the family for about 15 years. We all passed that child around on a pillow like he was going to break if we touched him! It was symbolic because he was precious and we cherished those moments. It was useful because a baby needs to be propped up and cushioned. They are hard to hold on to at all times. The Boppy helps and is comfortable for the adult as well as the baby.
I used my Boppy for feeding and holding my babies when they were very little. They come in cute designs. Mine was black and white. That was big back then. Now they have them in pretty patterns or you can get a plain one and they have slip covers you can buy separately. I went to The Boppy website and found they have lots of products besides just the pillow and you can order online. http://Boppy.com The prices range from $19.99 for a slip cover to $44.99 for a travel pillow. They also have those cute play gyms and mats that are a great and useful gift for $24.99 – $74.99.
There are many new products and some variations of the standard product and all are useful and make terrific gifts. My favorite is and always will be The Original Boppy. Every family should have one! In fact, I wish I had one now. I would still use it! It could be helpful for my aching back! Seriously, I was very impressed that The Boppy company thinks everyone should have a Boppy, too. And they are doing something to make that happen. They have a goal of donating $20,000 worth of Boppy® Pillows to moms in need with Nurse-Family Partnership.
In case you haven’t guessed . . . if you invite me to your baby shower, you’re getting a Boppy!
This article was written as a Guest Post on Stuff Parents Need
by Melissa Reyes
May 7, 2012