When you do a pregnancy test and see those two little pink lines, You can feel your whole world-changing, Life will not be the same again, and it will be amazing!
A good friend of mine recently found out she was pregnant with her first child, this was when she started to ask me questions, and I soon started thinking of all the things that I wish I had known at the start of my first pregnancy with my daughter.
I soon realised that there are probably a lot of other women who feel the same. It can be scary when you first find out, and you will have a million things rushing through your head.
So I decided to post on my social to get first-hand information from other real women who had stories to tell.
Please pass this on to any women you know who may be in the same position. Feel free to send me some things you wish you knew, and I can add them to this blog.
You can smile at how different things were then compared to how they are now, and believe me, things have changed a lot over the years.
Also, try to remember that It really is an estimated due date and not many babies arrive on time.
1 – Not every pregnancy is the same.
Just because you have a friend that could carry on doing regular day-to-day duties doesn’t mean you will be able to do the same. Just because you had another friend that gained a lot of weight during their pregnancy doesn’t mean you will, and just because someone had a problematic pregnancy doesn’t mean you will.
Please remember that this is your pregnancy, no one else’s, and no one has ever had your pregnancy before. Mine defiantly wasn’t. Your second or third pregnancy will be different to the first one, as no two pregnancies are the same, even for the same mother.
Just listen to your own body and don’t push yourself too hard. Try not to compare yourself to others and keep up with the Joans! Enjoy your pregnancy if you can.
2 – A few things I wish I had done.
This was another top tip from the socials.
- I kept a diary – just a few notes weekly so it can help you remember critical stages.
- Take photos, and if you can, then get professional maternity photos done. this was a huge one. A lot didn’t even get any on their phones.
- Say goodbye to dignity, doctors and nurses see the lot and god knows who else.
- A few had wished they exercised more during pregnancy.
- I LOVE THIS ONE – Email your baby – this I had to ask in more detail. And a friend of mine is actually doing this for her daughter. She has created an email address and sends here regular snippets and photos. Just a few lines so she can tell her how much she is loved, what she’s been doing when she first did something, etc., and then photos of moments through her years. I think it’s a lovely idea and when she’s old enough, she will have many crucial memories to read.
- Sleep when your baby is sleeping.
- Please have a good network around you. You will need it on your low days.
- Save your gift receipts.
- Pack snacks in your hospital bag.
- Take it slowly and enjoy the journey.
- 100% – Said yes to help.
- Enjoy the journey because it goes too quick.
- Pack pain relief in your hospital bag.
- Pack a phone charger in your hospital bag.
- Pack comfy slippers and pj’s in your hospital bag.
3 – You don’t need everything you think you’ll need.
So this one came up on our social feed, and a lot gave some excellent advice.
Talk to other mums if you can, even if it’s in social groups and see what they loved and what they bought that they thought was a bit of a waste of money or space. This will give you a good indication of what you need in your Life for your first baby.
So you don’t need one of everything! Your baby will grow out of things very fast, and some babies never use half of what you buy, or maybe they don’t like it.
Your first pregnancy can be overwhelming. There’s so much new information to take in. Take a deep breath… you’ve got this.
- You are nesting and getting ready to invite your baby into the world, And it’s so easy to think you need everything, but you don’t. Your ‘essentials’ will be different from everyone else’s.
- Keep it simple!
- Babies need a place to sleep.
- A car seat if you own a car. If not, borrow one for your trip home from the hospital.
- A pushchair, and you only need one, not like me, where I think I had a pushchair fetish going off at one point, and there was no need at all. Plus, by buying all this ‘stuff’, you’ll need somewhere to put it all.
- Babies need food.
- Babies need care and love.
- Babies need a clean bum.
- Babies need clothing; baby grows are super cute and keep their hands and feet warm. You can even get them now with built-in mittens, meaning no more scratches on babes face – see how easy this is.
Honestly, it’s true. Even as they grow older, you can buy them all the toys in the world, and they are happily playing with the box. They are happy with a packet of crisps or a half-empty pack of baby wipes for noisy toys.
Now I’m not saying they don’t buy them anything. I’m just trying to treasure you that you don’t need to buy everything!
4 – Use your pregnancy to your advantage!
This was another top tip from the socials.
No one is going to argue with a pregnant woman who wants to rest, and if they do, well, they may wish to regret it, haha
If you don’t feel like going out, or want to get out of doing a job, or if you are shopping and some things are too big and heavy, then Pull out the pregnancy card! You’re not going to be able to use this excuse for very long, so why not make the most of it while you can 😉
and the bonus is, it is also an excellent reason to request extra foot massages or back rubs. You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do, right?
5 – You are stronger than you ever imagined possible.
First, let’s remind ourselves that you are growing a baby inside of you. I think that’s pretty amazing, don’t you?
We are often reminded that women worldwide have been doing this whole ‘pregnancy’ thing for years, and we can easily forget how incredible this process actually is.
If you have a partner, then let them help you. Let them get involved. If you’re doing this as a single parent, don’t panic; you’re strong, and you got this!!
There will be moments of so much love you’ll feel like your heart is going to literally leap out of your chest. And there will also be moments of worry if you are going to be able to cope, and you will, you will be amazing!! Because you are so much stronger than you ever imagined possible. You will do everything you possibly can for your baby, making you stronger than you will ever know.
Your Life is about to change in the most fantastic way possible. Enjoy the journey.
6 – Know your options. This is your pregnancy.
As long as there is no medical reason why you can do something, then let your voice be heard. This is your baby and your body. Know all the options available to you and work out what best suits you.
For example, You don’t have to give birth in a hospital, you don’t have to have a cesarean, and you don’t have to stay on a bed the whole time. You don’t have to have an epidural. You have choices! There are ways to move a baby around who is presenting breech.
There are so many options, don’t be afraid to ask questions and don’t take everything at face value either.
A birthing plan doesn’t always go by the book, and sometimes how we incision it doesn’t always happen, but if you ask questions, you won’t be so much in the dark and will be prepared for what could happen if your birthing plan has to change slightly. But if you don’t ask, you won’t know.
7 – Pregnancy can have some embarrassing symptoms. Some people don’t tell you.
This is another one from the socials, so I will list them.
- Trapped wind and bloating, you might find you succumb to constipation. There’s no denying it – these things aren’t particularly pleasant.
- you will pass wind a lot more (and a lot smellier) than you ever did before
- Your breasts might start leaking.
- You might have a milky discharge,
- You can get varicose veins more prominent with extra pressure.
- Every time you pee, you will feel the need to check your pants for blood stains.
- Your hair will look fantastic.
- If you hear a baby cry, your breastmilk may appear at the ready.
- Your sex life may change dramatically – it could go either way.
- Feeling sudden movement in your bowels at odd times during the day – these can be your baby kicking!
8 – You’re not alone – Not ever
I’m not going to lie, but there Will be times when you feel so alone, even when there are people around you. There will be people around you who don’t understand what you’re going through, people who you wish would just hug you and listen.
The nights – when you’re up to because you feel every little movement of your baby that you don’t sleep or just can’t get comfortable.
When thongs you used to love, the smell makes you feel nauseated, and when all those thoughts of ‘what if…’ runs through your mind… you are not alone!
There are so many communities where you can find other women like yourself to talk to.
Facebook is a fantastic place to look for support. It’s filled with hundreds of groups and communities, some will be local to you, and you may even meet new friends.
I have a friend who joined an aqua swim group for pregnant mums, and years later, they are still really good friends and have helped each other through a lot over the years.
I hope this helps you with some of the many questions you may have. Good luck with your pregnancy and congratulations!!