Planned or unplanned, getting pregnant is usually really exciting. You can’t wait to join all the mommy groups, read all the baby apps, follow along with the growth of the baby, transition into motherhood. It’s all fun and exciting but there are a few things I wish I had known before getting pregnant. Not that it would have changed that fact that I wanted to be pregnant but it would have been nice to know that everything isn’t sunshine and rainbows when it comes to pregnancy. Here is a short list of 5 things I wish I had known before getting pregnant.
Extreme bloating- now, we’ve all experienced period bloat. I don’t know about you but that time of the month can be awful. You don’t fit in anything and you feel…. larger. Well, let me just put it plainly. Pregnancy brings on a whole new level of bloat and feeling large and in charge. Holy, wow! Even from the get go I felt bloated. My stomach stuck out a little more than usual and my pants were tight. I knew it wasn’t from the baby, after all I was only 4-5 weeks along, but nevertheless the bloat was there and it was way worse than any period bloat I had experienced. Even as I approached 9 weeks I looked as if I was 4 months along. Which leads me to my next thing- having to wear maternity pants sooner rather than later…..
Wearing maternity clothes early- with that bloat, brought discomfort in my everyday clothing. The button on my jeans were digging and creating a muffin top, it hurt when sitting down because they were a bit too snug. So, I decided to go look for maternity pants. You know, the ones with the giant belly panel. I wanted full coverage. I wasn’t into the rubber banding my pant button or any of that, I wanted comfort and comfort is what I found. Now, most maternity jeans with full panel are less than sexy by themselves but once you pull that shirt over the top, no one can really tell. I got myself a nice pair of skinny jeans with the full belly panel and they were heaven. Not only could I sit down without discomfort but they were stylish and cute as well. Nothing is more irritating than dealing with tight pants AND constant morning sickness.
Morning sickness- boy oh boy was I in for a surprise with the morning sickness. My mom never had it and as far as my grandma can remember she didn’t have it so I thought I was for sure in the clear. NOPE! It was not in the cards for either of my pregnancies. From week 1 to about 6-7 I was fine. Moving along and not really “feeling” pregnant. One Mom at work asked if I had gotten sick yet and proudly I said no. Little did I know what was to happen just a week later. Nausea and not just in the morning. WHAT? What Is this all day sick nauseous feeling? I thought they called it MORNING sickness for a reason… you know, it goes away after morning? No, not the case here. From week 6 to about 14, every day, all day long I was nauseous. During my first pregnancy I managed not to throw up during this nauseous time but baby number 2? Ha! I was throwing up daily. The morning sickness was killer. I managed to lose 8 pounds but nothing matters when you are feeling sick. Also, taking care of a 3 year old when you’re sick all day, not fun at all. Not all women get morning sickness so if you don’t then give yourself a high five!!
Birth plan goals- birth plans are great. They allow you to have an idea of what you want to happen. They give your medical team insight to how you’d like your birth to go BUT sometimes things don’t go as planned and you HAVE TO try to be ok with it. I had said I didn’t want any pain med intervention my whole pregnancy. I was going to do it without. Well, once I went into labor I labored at home until I was about 6cm. Let me tell you, on the way to the hospital I told my husband I was getting the epidural and there was nothing anyone could do to stop me. My loving husband didn’t argue but rather supported me in my choice to have the epidural. Sometimes, things don’t go as planned and you have to be prepared for that and allow yourself to be ok if it doesn’t go according to your birth plan. What matters is you and baby making it through safely. Give yourself a break!
Postpartum Mom bod- Now, I know it took 40 weeks to cook up a baby but no one told me how long it would take for my baby bump to go down. Even after losing all the “baby weight” I still had extra roundness to my belly. I didn’t realize I would still look 7 months pregnant leaving the hospital either. No one told me it would take almost a year to get the extra roundness to go down. I guess I was hoping to be one of the lucky ones that leaves the hospital in pre-baby shape… ha ha ha! Let me tell you ladies, that is not typical but it does happen for some. What’s even more important is that it is ok. It’s ok to have a postpartum Mom bod and don’t let magazines or celebrities con you into thinking otherwise. Your postpartum mommy body is beautiful and it was home to that amazing bundle of love you have in your arms. Give yourself some time. We can’t all snap back so quickly and we DON’T HAVE TO either.