If you have been assigned to bed rest for pregnancy, you know that days can feel like weeks! Check out this list of things to do while on bed rest. Maybe you can find something new or interesting that will help you pass the time.
Things to do while on bedrest
I remember so well the days and weeks I spent on bedrest. The days passed so slowly! It was before I had a smartphone, so I had a very limited range of things to do while on bedrest.
I also had no family nearby, and no close friends, and we lived 30 miles from the nearest store! It was a long month! Then the Dr finally released me from bed rest, and I was able to at least do light housework, it only lasted a couple of weeks before I went into early labor.
After that happened, I was sent to a hospital with a NICU, and it was 4 hours from home. I spent almost another month in the hospital, and again was bored! But that time, I had some church friends who sent me gift baskets and care packages and that helped so much!
I thought I would put together a list of activities and things I enjoyed while on bedrest, as well as some things I didn’t have but would have liked to have.
Of course, some things on this list will be dependent on your individual interests and tastes. And, if I may be so blunt, on your budget! When I was on bedrest, our budget was so tight that I couldn’t buy some things that I would have enjoyed.
Bed rest boredom busters
Watercolor painting. Watercolor is such a great art medium for bedfast patients because it is washable. No toxic fumes or messy oil or acrylics. Just use a lap desk or, if you are in a hospital, the rolling meal tray works great for crafts!
Sticker Books for Adults. A co-worker gave me this as a gift last year, and I loved it so much! It is not messy at all, can be worked on in in short or long periods of time, takes no extra tools. It’s like coloring but cooler! There are plenty of sticker books on Amazon!
Learn to Crochet. This might sound stuffy, but it really is quite soothing once you get the hang of it! There are really great beginner crochet books, as well as very neat organic, natural fiber yarn. Make a baby blanket or a toy for the new little one.
Board games. Ask friends to bring board games when they come visit. 2-player games are perfect way to pass the time for you and a friend.
Puzzles. These are great because you can do them alone. However, the size may be challenging, you will need a table that extends over your couch or bed. A felt puzzle mat may help you not to lose pieces.
Listen to Audio books or podcasts. There are some books on apps like Libby.
Bed bound activities
Learn a new language. I know, searching online for your condition, scrolling endless group chat threads, and scrolling Facebook groups can be so addictive! But what if you could learn the basics of a new language while you were down? Try one of the free language apps for a few minutes per day.
Learn sign language. This goes with the previous point, but again, how cool to be able to communicate with the deaf community when you meet them?
Study a subject you enjoy. This isn’t school. You aren’t being tested! Yay! But you can ask a friend to check out some books from the library on a subject you enjoy, and study them a bit each day. Do you enjoy history? Film making? Stand up comedy? Want to write a book? Learn about a favorite animal or how robots work? There are endless educational opportunities and it will help your body to be less tressed if you get your mind off of your current situation.
Read a book. I just can’t help it. I know that most people who don’t enjoy reading probably won’t pick up a book just because I am suggesting it, but it is such a great activity that I must mention it! Find a good series or whatever genre you enjoy. Same goes for movies but I don’t think anyone needs to be told watch a movie. Books are better for your brain, anyway!
Write snail mail letters. This was something I did to pass the time. I had someone bring me a box of thank you notes and I sent one to anyone who sent me gifts or came to visit. I also wrote letters to family and friends. In a day when 99% of our mail is bills and junk, it is so special to get a real letter or card in the mail.
What to eat on bedrest
First, I want to say that with the lack of exercise coupled with being pregnant, digestion can slow down. Keeping this in mind, be sure to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Protein is important as well, and healthy fats.
Try these healthy homemade date bars to snack on, they are so delicious! Ask your husband or a friend to make them for you, since you are supposed to stay in bed!
You can try some of these yummy pregnancy snacks, as well. I was so lucky to have great food at the hospital, but if you are at the hospital, be sure to have someone bring you some of your favorite snacks and drinks.
Drink lots of plain water! If you are at home, get a big, insulated water bottle and keep chugging! Water is very important and I had trouble drinking enough. If you are in the hospital, ask the nurses to refill it often.
Cool products for women on bed rest
I really, really needed this reading cushion, but somehow never thought of it till later! Oh man, how wonderful it would have been to have this amazing cushion! If you have a wife or friend on bed rest, please get them this cushion!
Whenever I drive past the airport in town, I think of the day I was flown out on an emergency flight to the Denver hospital. I remember how scared I was, and how miserable those meds made me feel. How it felt to be bundled onto a skinny stretcher by a couple of medical flight team members, and then staring at their knees all the way to the airport, squished in a tiny ambulance.
I remember feeling the cold rain on my bare feet as I laid on the stretcher, waiting for the flight team to untangle wires and tubes, and tuck me into the plane. It was too stormy for the helicopter, so we took a fixed-wing.
“Keep her head under the (airplane) door so she doesn’t get rain on her face”, said one flight nurse.
“Oh she’s had mag-sulfate, she’s probably hot” said another flight nurse. I was irritated because I was right there! I wanted to tell them that I was still cold, despite the mag-sulfate bolus. But I let it pass.
I remember lying in Denver, looking out the window at the night life, wondering what was going to happen to my kids while I was stuck down there in the hospital. And, I fondly remember the sweet nurses who comforted me and reassured me that I would be ok, my kids would be ok, and my baby would be ok.
Don’t hesitate to reach out to friends via text, phone, and email. People want to help, let them! Accept help, let them know what you really like and want, and pray for peace through this trial.
There are many things to do while one bedrest, and I hope you can find something to help the days pass quickly.