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The Best of Bed Rest

Making the best (and most) of prescribed time off your feet

by Boston Mamas  |  1749 views  |  1 comment  |        Rate this now! 

Jules, from Boston Mamas, is well on her way through the last trimester of her pregnancy with her first child. Today, she shares tips to survive bed rest:

“In my 33rd week of pregnancy, I went into preterm labor. It was terrifying, and in hopes of calming everything down, I was put on bed rest. For some people, being told to lie in bed all day is a dream come true (once you get past the fear and worry about the health of your little munchkin), but for me, it was a nightmare. As an athlete, I had been keeping up my five-days-a-week-at-the-gym regimen and was up and walking around for much of the day at my job at the hospital. Truth be told, I was marginally happy to have a reason to stay put; I was getting exhausted. I had fleeting fantasies about lounging around, watching TV and movies, poring over my cooking magazines, and perusing the Internet.

However, these fantasies were short lived and the reality is that now, after only my second week of bed rest, I am looking for any reason to get up. But I know this bed rest will be worth it, so I am creatively looking for ways to be purposeful and maintain human contact with those other than my wonderful, patient husband, who listens to me blab about nothing for an hour every night when he gets home. There is some reprieve now, as I’ve been granted the right to do housework (when have I ever been so grateful to clean the bathroom?!) and do short errands. However Draconian as this feels, I must remember that I am still officially on bed rest and have rules to live by. My own personal rule is to not turn on the television before 4 p.m. (3 p.m. if I’m desperate). Otherwise, here are some things that have made being home bound more bearable:

Get out of bed: I know, I know this is BED rest. But get out of bed, shower if you’re able, and move to a different location. The bed is for sleeping, so move to the couch or a chair (if you’re allowed to sit up). Set yourself up with everything you’ll need.

Open the shades/windows: It’s bed rest, not prison. Fresh air is a blessing.

Get organized: While you can’t necessarily organize the nursery, find things that you are able to do from your position. Straighten out your checkbook, your bills, your scrapbook, your address book, etc. I spent five hours one day doing all my thank you cards.

Read up: With the vast array of baby books, there seems to never be enough time to absorb all of the information we’re being given. Take this time to read the books you’ve been waiting to read. I recommend The Happiest Baby on the Block by Harvey Karp, Secrets of the Baby Whisperer by Tracy Hogg, and Your Baby's First Year by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

About the Author

Christine Koh is a music and brain scientist turned publisher, designer, and freelance writer/editor. She is the editor of and the artist behind

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1 comment so far...

  • Oh, absolutely enjoy that reading time, if not the enforced bed rest. Read parenting books. Read the news. Read it slowly and leisurely. With a quiet cup of tea. Sorry, but it's true: this is your last chance to do so!! :)) I read everything about pregnancy, childbirth and caring for infants. Then all my books are still bookmarked at the 3-5 month stage...

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Diane on 26th March 2008