Twilight star Nikki Reed is one adorable celeb mama-to-be, who’s expecting her first child sometime this month with her uber-handsome husband, Ian Somerhalder. By all accounts, she’s super excited about it — in fact, in a recent interview with Fit Pregnancy, the 29-year-old gushed about her growing belly, saying, “Your body is changing and morphing into something and you really have no control over any of it, it’s wild!”
Wild, indeed. So when I read in that same interview that Reed and Somerhalder plan to take a few weeks off from the world after welcoming their baby, I nodded in solidarity at her wish to cocoon herself at home with her brand new kiddo.
But then I kept reading.
“We’ll take the baby’s first month for ourselves,” Reed explained to Fit Pregnancy. “After the baby arrives, we’re doing one month of silence. Just the three of us, no visitors, and we’re turning off our phones too, so there’s no expectation for us to communicate. Otherwise, every five minutes it would be, ‘How are you feeling? Can we have a picture?’ You don’t get those first 30 days back, and we want to be fully present.”
Girl. Let. Me. Tell. You. What.
Those first 30 days are pure magic, yes; but they are also kind of hellish. That’s where the love and wisdom of the village come in. Trust me on this one.
I’ve had three kids myself and with each one, I think I initially swore off the idea of visitors, too. I even said I didn’t want anyone to come and visit me in the hospital because I so desperately wanted to sleep in between the 20 daily visits from nurses. But the truth was, I needed those visits and well-wishers. I needed people to cook and clean for me (although let’s be real, celebs already have that luxury). But I also needed to gush and glow with other women. I needed that damn village.
There’s a truly beautiful bonding that happens when a baby arrives. Newly-minted grandmothers cry tears of joy and us moms, still healing, get to bask in the celebratory outpouring of love.
But practically speaking, having extra hands around — especially hands that have changed a diaper or 500 before — are extremely useful. When I was home recovering from my third birth, I finally realized that there is no shame is being specific about what I needed. For me, I needed to be in sweat pants, on the couch, holding all of my kids and not lifting a finger to vacuum or cook dinner. We ate out a lot at first. My mother-in-law helped with the laundry and my mom drove hours to come and visit and she cleaned my house. And for us, that worked.
As for Reed’s comment about turning her phone off for 30 days … I couldn’t do it, but more power to her! I took about 5,000 pictures in the first few days of being home with my baby. And I have a sneaking suspicion that she will, too.
In any case, welcome to the motherhood, Nikki Reed! I hope you find your village and that they surround you with all the support and love you’ll need.