I was fairly young when we started our family, and we sure got our three pregnancies done quick! Our youngest was born when we were just 25 years old. Whether you’re a first-time mom, or really experienced, I’m sure you either know or have heard that every pregnancy is different. That is SO TRUE! Luckily there’s some tips and helpful resources that can get you through. Here’s My Favorite Tips for Surviving Pregnancy, plus a few funny stories!
Let me start by being blunt – I don’t like being pregnant. I know there’s women who really enjoy the whole experience – and while yes I loved feeling my babies move and kick, watching them on ultrasounds and hearing their heartbeat, and of course was THRILLED to have my babies – I really hated the actual pregnancies. Maybe I’m a wimp, but I’m okay with that! I wouldn’t trade those miserable months for anything, though. We got pregnant with my girl when I was just 20 years old, and living on the other side of the state than my mom. I had so many questions and concerns that I was kind of a wreck the first couple of months! Luckily a friend gave me the most trusted pregnancy book: What to Expect® When You’re Expecting. I think I pretty much wore that book out, reading everything I could so I could be as prepared as possible.
Story Time: The night I went into labor with my girl, we were over at my grandparents. By the time we got home we were positive it was real, time-able contractions. I told Clayton to get some sleep while he could, and I grabbed my copy of What to Expect® When You’re Expecting and devoured the Labor & Delivery section while enduring the contractions as long as I could! He slept, I studied and went through contractions – seems fair, right? 😉
I can’t tell you how much this book helped me with my first pregnancy – answer so many questions that I didn’t even know to ask or wonder about! I was even able to advocate for myself more with the nurses, who acted like I was too young to know anything.
Then guess what? A few years later we decided to expand our family, and when we got an ultrasound to see why I was so extremely sick at the beginning…..they found two heartbeats! Needless to say, I had a whole list of new questions and worries – and this book again got me through a lot of it. When I ended up having early labor and got put on bedrest for the last 3 months before the boys made their appearance, I read that book plenty. I was really glad I’d read more about C-sections, despite insisting I didn’t want one, when my 2nd twin suddenly needed an emergency one!
Story Time: Clayton was in the OR with me when we went in to deliver the twins. After Thor was born just fine, he walked over to the little incubator to check on him. He turned to start walking back to me – I looked at his face go white and I told the nurses ‘I think he’s going to pass out’! Sure enough, he suddenly fell to the floor unconscious! He didn’t hurt himself, thank goodness – but the nurses helped him by fanning his face and feeding him some crackers so he could feel okay enough to get up and leave the OR (since obviously he couldn’t handle it). I’m there on the table in LABOR and he’s getting pampered by several cute nurses, then has to leave the room before all the drama of the emergency C-section situation. Nope – he’s never living that down!
For all you who are pregnant or may be in the future, you’re going to be SO GLAD to hear that What to Expect® When You’re Expecting is now in it’s brand new 5th Edition! That means a fresh perspective, up-to-the-minute information and advice – but the same friendly, reassuring voice that made it a bestseller (and my permanent bedside book for 6 years) for decades! Not only have they brought DAD into the book all throughout, but it answers every imaginable questions expecting parents could ask – and offers solutions for every pregnancy and postpartum symptom.
I love that the medical coverage is completely updated, including everything expectant moms need to know about the Zika virus. While I have no plans for another baby, my sister-in-law is currently expecting her first! Guess what I got her as a gift? Yup – this amazing book that truly helped me survive my pregnancies 🙂
Tips for Surviving Pregnancy
#1: Don’t Overdo It: you’re building a human being – that’s no small task! Take this time to rest, and don’t be afraid to take on less tasks than normal. People will completely understand – if they don’t, smack them (and blame it on the baby brain). Kidding! Well, sort of 😉
#2: Ask for Help: Like I said above – you’re BUILDING A HUMAN! That’s pretty much the toughest job around, so don’t hesitate to ask for help. There’s so many times I wouldn’t, and regretted it later. Friends, family and even neighbors will be thrilled to help you out, but you won’t know unless you ask!
#3: Keep Food by the Bed: I had horrible morning sickness ALL DAY for all of my pregnancies, the whole time. I learned that if I kept crackers or something simple by my bed and ate before getting up, it didn’t start off as harsh. Whether you get sick or not, it’s likely you’ll also have times when you wake up needing just a little bite to eat – so this makes it much more convenient.
#4: Read What to Expect® When You’re Expecting: You saw this one coming, right? But it is honestly and truly SO HELPFUL, and can answer tons of questions to help you get through the nine months, then the big finish at the end. Even after my first two pregnancies, I still learned new things and had different experiences with my last.
#5: Get a Good Doctor: This doesn’t mean he’s THE BEST or anything, but you need a Doctor who you get along with and trust. You don’t want someone you feel awkward around, feel that they don’t really care or give you enough time, doesn’t answer your questions or that doesn’t listen to you. A good relationship with your Doctor is super important!
#6: Have a Support System: Whether it’s your significant other, mom, sister, or friend – make sure you have some good people who you trust and that truly care for you to give you support. Not just at the end, but all through the pregnancy, too.
#7: Find a Comfort Food: If you’re sick and/or dealing with crazy cravings, try to find a comfort food that sits well in your stomach. There were days I couldn’t keep anything down EXCEPT pickles, or chocolate. You’ll do better if there’s something you can keep down.
#8: Finally – TAKE NAPS! Your body will be exhausted and sore, your emotions will be a roller-coaster, and even your brain will be like ‘what the heck?!’ – taking time for a nap can work wonders. Lots of people advised naps to me with my first, but I was ‘too busy’ to listen. I definitely wished I had after the fact!
What pregnancy questions were (or are) foremost on YOUR mind? I bet What to Expect® When You’re Expecting has an answer!
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