Mamas on Bedrest: “How Can I Help?” (Transcript)

April 18th, 2014

TGIF Mamas!!

I received a comment from Mama on Bedrest Tracy. She had viewed the vlog “How Can I Help” and wondered why I simply hadn’t written out the tips as it would have been easier to give to friends and family. Well Tracy, prior to starting vlogging (producing video blogs) I had mamas comment that it would be nice to simply be able to sit back and have information kind of “fed” to them. So I instituted the Video Wednesdays. But you are right.

When a mama goes on bed rest, the FAMILY goes on bedrest! Everything about the entire family dynamic shifts; it’s essentially thrown up in the air and the chips land where they may. The same can be said about the birth of a baby and most assuredly in the event that baby ends up in the NICU. In order to reclaim a bit of order amidst the chaos, friends and loved ones may want to help the family in need. But what should they do? So often when they ask, “How can I help?” their questions are met with vacant stares or, “Oh, anything is a great help.” or even, “Don’t worry about it. I couldn’t even tell you!” Wouldn’t it be great to be able to hand these well meaning loved ones a short list of tasks? Well, Here it is! A Transcript (not word for word, but a good approximation) of the information in that post. Hope it helps and that your family and friends are able to meet your needs!

My kids just days after the birth of my son. Any of the "helps" listed would have been a Godsend!

My kids just days after the birth of my son. Any of the “helps” listed would have been a Godsend!

Meals. When a mama goes on bed rest or delivers a baby, she obviously isn’t able to prepare meals for her family. Bringing over a meal, casserole or other prepared food will greatly help the family stay well fed and well nourished. Please don’t bring “elements” of the meal for them to cook. The family doesn’t have the time nor the energy. Bring the dish ready to heat in the oven or Microwave. If it’s a salad, bring the salad made with condiments such as croutons, raisins and nuts in separate containers and do include salad dressing!

Grocery Shop. The above being said, it would be an enormous help if you could stock the family up on such staples as bread, milk, toilet paper, paper towels, etc…Also, throw in some snacks for good measure; fresh fruits, chips, popcorn.

House Cleaning. As I said in the video, I hate cleaning my own home, so I wouldn’t really like to go and clean someone else’s home-although I would for any of my besties. But if cleaning really isn’t your thing, why not get together with a few folks and buy maid service? Professional house cleaning is a wonderful thing and if done well, will last a family a week or two.

Laundry. Now I personally don’t mind laundry, but it is time consuming and for a family with mama out of commission or a new baby in the NICU, finding time to do the laundry can be a challenge. These days, why not scoop up all the laundry, take it to a laundrymat and have it done? It’s really easy and usually just a couple of dollars per load! Laundromats will wash, dry and fold laundry usually within one  day! It’s a great service and a great gift to a family in transition.

Pets. Family upheavel is especially hard on pets. With all of the coming and going, sometimes pets get lost in the shuffle. So if you know the family in transition has a pet, make sure the pet has adequate food and water and the pee/poop is being addressed. They have a cat? Consider changing the litter box! They have a dog? Take the dog for a walk. If the family is completely overwhelmed, consider fostering the pet until the period of transition is over, pet daycare or a short stay at a pet hotel.

Those were my suggestions. Hope they are useful to you! Share what you liked most in the comments section below as well as any tips or suggestions. As always, you can send comments to

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