Monday, January 30, 2012

Make the Best of Bedrest

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Bed rest can be a real bummer for the busy woman. I only spent two and a half weeks on hospitalized bed rest myself, so I have serious respect for you mamas who have had to do it for extended periods of time! I'm so thankful, and encouraged to share this with you- God gives grace even for bed rest! He knows what we need, and His mercies are new every morning, even when you wake up to spend yet another long day in bed.

Here are some things that helped to keep me sane during bed rest:

1. Don't become a total couch potato. As soon as you realize you are stuck and might be for awhile, the temptation is to begin a movie and t.v marathon. Although there is time for these things, don't completely veg out. The time God has given you is precious and can be redeemed, even when He has put you on bed rest. I don't know about you, but I can only spend so much screen time before I feel disgusting and depressed... not where you want to be in an already frustrating situation.

2. Make a daily schedule or routine. Want to get through a season of a show you've been meaning to catch up on? Fine. My suggestion is to make a daily schedule, which includes things like watching t.v and relaxing. Order your day by priorities; I always tried to start my day in the hospital with Bible reading and prayer, memorizing scripture, and then trying to make myself as clean and presentable as my restrictions allowed. Then I gave myself plenty of time for reading, visiting with friends in person or by phone, checking stuff online, or whatever else I was able for. Having some sort of order in a topsy-turvy life circumstance can bring much needed stability and peace of mind.

3. Think of this time as a gift from the Lord. I know, hard to do. Yet we've been commanded as believers to rejoice always. A friend of mine recently checked into the hospital for bed rest, they are hoping to keep her there and pregnant for at least ten weeks. She has two little girls at home, and the hospital is an hour and a half away. Now that's a challenge! I was encouraged by her attitude as I spoke with her the other day. "I'm trying to think of this as a ten week vacation," she shared. Hey, no dishes or diapers or house cleaning! It is a break and time of rest you might never get again, especially with a newborn on the way. This is a precious opportunity to do the things you've always meant to but haven't had time for- reading your back logged book list, or taking up a hobby for example.

4. Find ways to encourage and serve others. Sometimes the best thing you can do when your current situation is a source of discouragement is to focus on the needs of others. Be sweet and friendly to your nurses and other hospital staff, they are working long hard days and receive little appreciation. Look for opportunities to encourage them and point them to Christ. Be an easy patient! Write encouraging notes to friends and loved ones. Find a way you can help your church- my church hands out gospel newsletters to homes in the community, and something I could do from bed was to stuff them in their envelopes. The biggest way you can serve others is to PRAY for them! I am so encouraged by the example of one man in my church. When a devastating accident left him paralyzed from the neck down and stuck in bed permanently, he did not grow bitter. He made a specific point of using his time to pray for all of the members of our congregation. Look on the bright side, your bed rest is temporary. Pray, sister!

5. Start a project or take up a craft. What a perfect time to start an album for your baby! Or to learn to knit or crochet or cross stitch. Have you been wanting to start a blog? A scrapbook? Make something for your baby? Get to it! :)

6. Learn, learn, learn! With the extra time on your hands, why don't you read up and become an expert on a topic of interest? Prepare for labor by reading some great birth books. Or better yet, if you are facing a preemie, familiarize yourself with what that might mean for your baby. There is such a wealth of material online, research all that you can. Knowledge can make labor and a premature baby a little less scary.

7. Rest up! Believe it or not, I didn't get much sleep on bed rest. Part of it was that it's hard to sleep in a hospital, the other part was that I had a lot of company and activities lined up for myself. Seriously, just sleep! Don't feel guilty about napping during the day. At home with a new baby and any other kids you might have, you won't be able to sleep this much again for a LONG time. So enjoy, and get some rest.

Hope this helps. I know that bed rest is less than ideal, but as you seek to redeem the time you might be surprised at how fast it goes. Blessings!

Linked Up With: The Better Mom

4 comments:

  1. This was super practical--I haven't had to experience this yet, but if I do, I'm definitely going to remember this post!

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    1. Thanks Lacey! Glad you found it useful... but I hope you never need it :).

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  2. Great tips! I was stuck on bedrest for over a month with my daughter. I launched Simply Prudent during that time! :)

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    1. Thanks Jenni :). Way to redeem your time! I was reading on your blog and realized your daughter was born only a month before mine. Did she come early too?

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