Nothing can be more miraculous than adding a child to your life, and all parents go through stages where they feel ill-prepared. It’s no different when you’re opening your home and heart to a child through adoption, and it can be easy to feel overwhelmed. Through preparation, however, you can better focus on the joy of your child and savor building family bonds. Read on for how to create the perfect landing spot for your child so you can make the most of every moment of this life-changing experience.
Stock up smartly
If you’re planning to adopt an infant or toddler, you’ll be best off with an assortment of items close by at all times. With that in mind, Kindred Bravely suggests setting up a diaper bag filled with a few essentials that aren’t directly related to a baby. Start out with some well-chosen items that will make your life easier, and add and subtract as experience dictates.
As an example, a waterproof pouch or wet bag can catch everything from spit up, to diaper blowouts, to muddy socks – you’ll be surprised how often they come in handy! Little things like hand sanitizer (organic versions are safest to use around little ones) and extra clothes for your child can also be a boon, and you might want to include a T-shirt or two for yourself for when your youngster smears you with sticky fingers or spit up. Grab a handful of hair ties, too, since it’s sometimes necessary to get your locks out of grabby hands or just off your face.
Child-proof your home
As a child grows, learning and exploring are a major part of development. Sometimes, that can lead to dangerous situations if you haven’t made necessary preparations. What’s more, many organizations require a pre-adoption home visit, so take a good look at your home and make any appropriate adjustments.
One concern you should consider is furniture that could tip over. As children crawl, grab, and climb, they can inadvertently pull furniture over, potentially leading to accidents, damage, and injuries. In order to avoid issues, anchor or restrain pieces like TV sets, bookcases, and cabinets so curious little ones don’t get into trouble.
Along those same lines, babies and small children often put things in their mouths as they explore the world. In fact, Baby Center explains that according to some statistics, over a million children under the age of six are accidentally poisoned each year.
With that in mind, go through your home room by room, identifying potential issues and resolving them. Watch for things like vitamins, batteries, cosmetics, magnets, medications, houseplants, and chemicals like paint thinner, pesticides, and cleaning products. Secure items that are must-haves in locked cabinets or well out of reach, and consider replacing questionable things before your child arrives. For instance, you can replace harsh chemical cleaners with non-toxic cleaning products and aim for houseplants that are safe choices.
Dot some I’s and cross some T’s
In addition to getting your home ready and having the right items on hand, there are some practical measures that can provide you with a different kind of peace of mind when you’re preparing for a child. For instance, you’re soon going to need a pediatrician, so do some asking around and learn about doctors nearby, find out who is covered by your insurance policy, and consider who you think you would like working with.
Taking a new-parent CPR class can also help you feel prepared in case something unthinkable should happen. Similarly, completing a will ensures your child will be in a situation that meets your preferences if tragedy should strike.
Adopting a child is an amazing experience. While it can feel overwhelming to know some little person is going to depend on you, a few smart strategies can give you confidence. Stock up on appropriate supplies, child-proof your home, and tend to some things to help get your ducks in a row. You’ll be ready to savor every moment with your child thanks to these simple measures.