11 Ways Having a Baby is like the Zombie Apocalypse

Chelsea Day

After the carnage of labor, you might feel like the entire world is coming to an end. There’s the full spectrum of Armageddon emotions as parents realize that life will never be the same. Welcome to the baby apocalypse, where tiny invaders call the shots!

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There's a Lot of Blood

Ladies, you’ll see what we mean come show time. This whole “baby-having” thing is almost as messy as Night of the Living Dead. Almost.

You Sleep with One Eye Open

Uninterrupted nights are a thing of the past. Even when the baby does sleep, you find yourself waiting breathlessly for the next go-around.

It involves a Hefty Amount of Supplies

Zombie apocalypse survivors seek out a fully-loaded Hummer with stockpiles of ammunition. New moms register for an arsenal of breast pumps, nursing bras and diaper warmers.

Communication Skills Deteriorate

You and your partner will pass each other in the hallway murmuring nonsensical utterances between shift swaps. “Didja rarm formra?” “Issina mercerave.” Did you warm the formula? It's in the microwave. Good thing you’re both proficient at zombie speak.

You Don't Eat

Fresh food is a thing of the past. After missing grocery day for weeks on end, that mish mash of non-perishables in the back of the kitchen cupboard start looking seriously tempting. Pop Tarts don’t expire, do they?

Distant Friends will Assume you're Dead

Who has time to keep in touch when the entire landscape of the universe as we know it is shifting? As in all horror movies, pleasantries can wait until the dust settles.

You Stop Caring how you Look

Makeup, workouts and any sort of skin care goes straight out the window…unless you count the occasional stray vomit that may wind up on your chin. Can that count as moisturizer?

At Some Point you'll be Chased by Goons

Instead of seeking out human flesh, strangers in town will run you down in hopes of distilling unsolicited advice.

Everything Smells Awful

At some point, a bottle will be indefinitely forgotten in the glove compartment or you’ll experience the diaper blowout of the century. If at some point you don’t question, “What IS that smell? Did someone DIE in here?” you’re not doing it right.

Medical Training becomes an Invaluable Resource

EMTs, nurses, doctors, even experienced fire and public safety personnel are suddenly in high-demand for everything from temperature assessments to medication dosages.

You're left with a LOT of Questions about What Just Happened

In all seriousness, there are some burning questions that people like to address before having a baby. Here are some of the ones I've heard a lot:

  • How much money should you have saved before having a baby? Ideally, enough to pay six months of bills in case you lose your job / a pandemic happens / medical issues arise / things get weird. That said, if you're already pregnant and freaking out about money or facing hard times, don't panic. There may be some social safety nets to fall back on, such as WIC, disability or unemployment insurance.
  • What needs to be done before baby arrives? All the things. HAH, no really, babies honestly don't require that much pre-planning. It's helpful to have a birth plan when you arrive at the hospital just to ease your own mind, but it's not essential. Billions and billions of people have done this before. As far as what you need back home, some swaddles are useful, as well as a safe cot or crib to place them in for nap time, and diapers and a pad to change them on. That's really all you need.
  • What about health insurance? Key things to know about health insurance are that pregnancy is no longer allowed to be counted as a pre-existing condition (that means health insurance HAS to help cover your childbirth). After birth, your baby is covered by default for 30 days and you have 60 days to officially add your baby to your health insurance plan. If you do not enroll them within 60 days, you need to wait until open enrollment and their needs may NOT be covered during that gap.
  • How breakable are babies? Somewhat. Key things to know are that babies are at risk of death if they are put to bed too close to another person, blanket, or toy. Their crib should be kept entirely clear of objects, other than a correctly-applied swaddle. Beyond that, babies are remarkably resilient and actually don't need a whole lot, other than your love, the occasional care of a good doctor, and some breastmilk or formula.
  • Will having a baby fix my relationship? Nope, sorry. Definitely not.
  • How much do babies sleep, on average? Newborns actually sleep a ton - 14 to 18 hours on average! Just not all at the same time, or in any reliable stretch or schedule. One of my babies initially slept pretty much around-the-clock, waking every 40 minutes to cry for 20 minutes at a time. Every. Forty. Minutes. I almost went bonkers. He did eventually start sleeping for four hours stretches when he was around four months old. It's a total crapshoot during the first six months or year of life.
  • What should I do if I'm worried that something is wrong with my baby? Call a nurse! Most health insurance providers offer a hotline where you can reach a triage nurse who can assess symptoms over the phone and direct you to a doctor or hospital if necessary. Call the handy phone number on your insurance card. Don't have insurance? Call 211 to get access to local help and resources (it's kind of like 911 for non-emergencies).
  • Will life ever be the same? No! Yeah, really though, no. Having a baby means that you suddenly care about someone more than yourself. More than your own life, even, and that's a really bizarre feeling. My oldest is almost 10 now, and I don't foresee that feeling going away any time soon.

If you're pregnant and feeling a little stressed about what's to come, just remember that you're joining an awesome club of caring parents who only want what's best for their babies - and who will gladly help out! Maintain your sense of humor, and remember that the sleepless nights will end and you'll be left with a family to cherish forever.

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Helping parents live simple and satisfying lives. Our homeschooling family loves to learn, and in our spare time (hah!) we RV travel and flip houses.

Boise, ID
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