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What are some things you wished you knew about pregnancy?

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peonygirl

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Hi gals! I recently found out that I am pregnant, and I realized that I know tons about TTC but not much about pregnancy. Since a lot of you are moms, I''d love to get any sort of advice--specific or general--that you can provide. Basically, things you wished you knew when you first got pregnant (besides the obvious like get sleep while you can
).

Right now I''m just focusing on two things, eating healthy and trying not to be too stressed out/anxious. Anything else I should be particularly concerned with? DH and I are pretty nervous because we had an early pregnancy loss in December. Thanks SO much!
 

LaraOnline

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The biggest thing - and strangely, no-one mentioned it specifically except my mum - was to avoid falling over, or violent movements, even in early pregnancy.
My mother lost a baby when she was running on some wet grass, falling on her bum was enough for her to lose the bub!!

No-one said a thing to me about the risk of this, and a few weeks into my pregnancy, I found myself at the front of a speedboat, going very fast and ''thump, thump, thump'' at a reasonable height over the waves...

Also, try not to lift heavier weights, even of bulk tins of laundry powder, buckets of water etc. I did so, and opened up the muscles that run down the centre of your abdomen. Quite painful!

Finally, while I am not the pill-popping type, and to my shame did not take the supplements everyone seems to recommend, I did find that taking the occasional multi-vitamin did wonders for a nausea and that ''hit the wall'' feeling.

For morning sickness, well... Vegemite (high in vitamins B) on toast really did the trick, but morning sickness really varies from pregnancy to pregnancy...

There is a supplement available through the chemist if you get really bad heartburn, I wish I''d known about that! In Australia, it''s called ''Tums'', designed specifically for pregnant women.
 

ljmorgan

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I wish I had known that people will offer you more unsolicited advice than I knew could possibly ever exist! I want to stress that everyone''s pregnancy is different, and that with a good doctor and a pregnancy book or two, you will do great. Trust your instincts -- some days you won''t feel like eating your 5 a day of veggies, some days you''ll feel too nauseous to pop your multi-vitamin, and some days you''ll feel like drinking soda... with caffeine.
But other days will more than make up for that, and in the long run you and baby will be fine. Some of the ladies on one of my other pregnancy forums are so neurotic and are fearful about everything. Pregnancy can definitely be scary at times, but just keep that end goal in mind -- a happy, healthy baby. Trust your instincts, don''t be afraid to call your doctor, and enjoy the journey as much as you can -- it is so special!
 

Mandarine

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Obviously I''m newly pregnant too, but I started a journal for the little ones that I hope to continue after they are born and give it to them when they''re older!


For now I''m trying to stay calm and enjoy it....obviously eating very healthy and trying to stay active (or at least keep up the walking every night!
)

Congrats Peony!!!

M~
 

packrat

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I''ll echo about journaling. I SO wish I''d done that w/my kids..I''m terrible about keeping up on baby books too-my 2 yr old son doesn''t even have one. Enjoy being pregnant-it''s such a wonderful feeling to know you''re going to be a mommy, even thru morning sickness and swollen feet and sciatic nerve pain and everything else-it''s just so worth it! I ate a lot of apples when I felt icky..I grazed all day to always have a little bit of food in my stomach to keep the heartburn and morning sickness at bay.

We had a book that each chapter told what was going on that particular week..it would give size comparisons, like your baby is the size of a grape at this point. So we started calling our first "The Grape" and then when the week said the baby was 1/4 pound, we called her the Quarter Pounder.

Ditto Lindsey about all the unsolicited advice. If you tell the names you''re thinking of, you''ll get lots of opinions about them, and from my experience, it got a little old after a while. It''s nice to get feedback, but sometimes it''s a bit much.
 

vespergirl

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Until I was about 5 months along, I got the spins and had fainting spells. It was very scary, because they would come on so quickly.

Congrats!
 

TravelingGal

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I wish I knew that a BABY comes out at some point! I might have changed my mind!!


The best advice I got while pregnant was to not worry too much about reading up on pregnancy. If you take care of yourself, your body will do its thing. While it''s interesting to see what your body goes through, my friend advised me to read up on PARENTING instead because once the kid is out you''re thrown under a bus. No time to read those first weeks of motherhood (too tired) so I was so happy that I read lots of interesting books about babies instead.
 

dreamer_dachsie

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I wish I had known that it was possible to have strange pains or other physical things that would make it impossible to walk or be active in the last weeks or month of pregnancy... of course, I *knew* this could happen, but it is another thing entirely to then be faced with this reality. Because of Hunter's position, I was in too much pain to walk more than a few yards at a time for the last month of my pregnancy, and this meant that I was almost sedentary. Alas, I wasn't as active as I would have liked during the earlier phases in my pregnancy, and I am really paying the price for this now... recovery is taking a long time and I am so sick of not being able to do whatever I want physically! Anyways, being active in your pregnancy is not *just* about weight management. There are huge changes that take place in your body and the more active you are, the easier it will be to recover. So I wish that I have been more serious about being active through my WHOLE pregnancy, I think it would have paid off big time now.

I also wish that I had been able to take it easy on the work front starting at the third trimester. I really overdid things at that time (job market/flying/interviews) and I think my body paid the price for it. So although you need to stay active, do not forget that your body is working hard already just growing a baby! So take it a little easier when you start to get into that final stretch, especially by avoiding mentally stressful work or really long and taxing days.
 

lili

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Date: 3/14/2009 10:23:08 PM
Author: TravelingGal
The best advice I got while pregnant was to not worry too much about reading up on pregnancy. If you take care of yourself, your body will do its thing. While it''s interesting to see what your body goes through, my friend advised me to read up on PARENTING instead because once the kid is out you''re thrown under a bus. No time to read those first weeks of motherhood (too tired) so I was so happy that I read lots of interesting books about babies instead.


Excellent, excellent advice.
I didn''t read up on parenting then, so now I rely on the expertise of the other mommies on the mommy thread


All I can say about pregnancy is eat healthy, relax, embrace your changing body, and enjoy feeling your baby inside you.
 

Tacori E-ring

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Date: 3/15/2009 12:53:13 AM
Author: lili
Date: 3/14/2009 10:23:08 PM

Author: TravelingGal

The best advice I got while pregnant was to not worry too much about reading up on pregnancy. If you take care of yourself, your body will do its thing. While it''s interesting to see what your body goes through, my friend advised me to read up on PARENTING instead because once the kid is out you''re thrown under a bus. No time to read those first weeks of motherhood (too tired) so I was so happy that I read lots of interesting books about babies instead.



Excellent, excellent advice.

I didn''t read up on parenting then, so now I rely on the expertise of the other mommies on the mommy thread



All I can say about pregnancy is eat healthy, relax, embrace your changing body, and enjoy feeling your baby inside you.

I also agree. Wish I didn''t worry so much. Wish I didn''t RUSH it. Wish I didn''t let OTHER people''s comments get to me.
 

soocool

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It has been quite a while since I was pregnant (almost 17 years!), but I do remember wanting to sleep alot. I had absolutely no morning sickness, but that is probably because I constantly ate (small meals/snacks) throughout the day. I walked a lot, put my feet up a lot. I gained about 25 pounds and found that I had an intense distaste for junk food during my pregnancy.

I was able to wear most of my regular tops during my pregnancy but did need maternity pants. If you can find someone to give you some maternity clothes, go for it, because I remember it being very expensive (thank goodness I had a sister who had a ton of clothes. We''re both the same size so I borrowed from her).

Watch your blood pressure and try to stay away from too much processed sugar. Braxton Hicks contractions can be a little scary at first (I didn''t know about these when I first experienced them), don''t worry if you don''t always feel the baby moving (they sleep too), and if you feel some belly palpatations, it is the baby having hiccups.

I am a back sleeper and was told it is better (for blood flow/pressure) to lie on your left side. I trained myself to do just that, because I found when I would sleep on my back (2nd and 3rd trimesters) I would get a little light headed in the mornings.

Finally, when you approach the final few weeks, check to make sure the baby has changed position. Discuss this with your doctor. Three weeks before I was due the baby''s head was still up in my ribcage. The doctor left it up to me to decide what I wanted to do and I decided to go for a C-section. A good thing I did because my daughter was breech. Another woman I know decided to wait until she went into labor and her daughter was also breech, but she endured a long difficult tiring labor before they performed the C-section. I on the otherhand recovered very quickly from my Csection and my friend quite a bit longer.
 

ChinaCat

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T-Gal (and anyone else):

Any parenting books you found particularly helpful? I know everyone has different opinions, but would love some recommendations. I vaguely remember you and Jas12 discussing some books way back in the preggo thread, but it''s hard to go back and read everything.

I am 19 weeks but I''ll say I wish I had started journaling at the beginning. I always meant to, but between work and being exhausted, I never got started. I also agree on the staying active- I haven''t been as active as I intended, but have stuck with my trainer once a week and my Pilates once a week and I still feel strong and it always makes me feel better. I do wish/intend to add more cardio- just walking or swimming or something. I hate working out and always thought I would use this time as an excuse to not have to, but honestly I am more motivated b/c I see it as a strength/healthy thing rather than trying to stay skinny or lose weight.
 

soocool

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Date: 3/15/2009 12:38:25 PM
Author: ChinaCat
T-Gal (and anyone else):

Any parenting books you found particularly helpful? I know everyone has different opinions, but would love some recommendations. I vaguely remember you and Jas12 discussing some books way back in the preggo thread, but it''s hard to go back and read everything.

I am 19 weeks but I''ll say I wish I had started journaling at the beginning. I always meant to, but between work and being exhausted, I never got started. I also agree on the staying active- I haven''t been as active as I intended, but have stuck with my trainer once a week and my Pilates once a week and I still feel strong and it always makes me feel better. I do wish/intend to add more cardio- just walking or swimming or something. I hate working out and always thought I would use this time as an excuse to not have to, but honestly I am more motivated b/c I see it as a strength/healthy thing rather than trying to stay skinny or lose weight.
SDL mentioned the book, What to Expect When Your Are Expecting and there is the sequel, What to Expect the First Year and after that What to Expect the Toddler Years, which I used a great deal for reference. These books were very helpful, though you may disagree on somethings. It is a good starter guide since every child has his/her own temperament, personality, etc.
 

TravelingGal

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Date: 3/15/2009 12:38:25 PM
Author: ChinaCat
T-Gal (and anyone else):

Any parenting books you found particularly helpful? I know everyone has different opinions, but would love some recommendations. I vaguely remember you and Jas12 discussing some books way back in the preggo thread, but it''s hard to go back and read everything.

I am 19 weeks but I''ll say I wish I had started journaling at the beginning. I always meant to, but between work and being exhausted, I never got started. I also agree on the staying active- I haven''t been as active as I intended, but have stuck with my trainer once a week and my Pilates once a week and I still feel strong and it always makes me feel better. I do wish/intend to add more cardio- just walking or swimming or something. I hate working out and always thought I would use this time as an excuse to not have to, but honestly I am more motivated b/c I see it as a strength/healthy thing rather than trying to stay skinny or lose weight.
I would say sleep books are probably most helpful since that''s what new mom''s struggle with the most.

Discuss with your partner what your sleep philosophies are. Co-sleeping? In the crib in another room? CIO or Non-CIO? Then check out amazon and go through some books and read reviews.

I used Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth. Jas12 used The Baby Whisperer.

There are a ton of sleep books - but the well known ones are Sears, Ferber, Pantley and the ones mentioned above.

I also highly recommend The Happiest Baby on the Block - I didn''t use the DVD but if I were to do it again, I would have as it seems more entertaining.

What to expect the first year is a good reference book. I didn''t read it cover to cover but I skimmed through. I also referenced it a bit early on but really haven''t touched it since Amelia was about 4 months old. If you can get this book secondhand, that would be great.

Also read articles on the net about breastfeeding if you can. In addition, I remember reading articles on plagiocephaly (flat head syndrome) and what to do to help avoid it.

And after all that, it still wasn''t enough! I had a girl and her first week home she had those "mini periods." Well, I obviously missed that part in the book and wondered why she was discharging blood!! So it''s good to read about the normal seemingly scary stuff that happens because it helps curb the alarm.


After all the books, the best single thing is the mommy''s thread. Back when I was pregnant, there was no mommy thread so we were all posting together on the preggo thread. Hearing about their experiences was great and I filed a lot of stuff away in the back of my head. If you can, lurk on the mommy threads now...you''ll be surprised at some of the stuff you''ll remember and how comforting it is to know that your baby isn''t alone in some of the weird things that s/he does.
 

Tacori E-ring

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I also read "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child" and "The Happiest Baby on the Block." Both were lifesavers.
 

MichelleCarmen

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One was getting my teeth cleaned early on. This is gross, but for nearly a month, if I even touched a toothbrush to my tongue, I would have a gag reflex. Yep, I went an ENTIRE month without brushing my teeth.


Second, was not drinking juice would have resulted in less weight gain.

ETA - maternity clothes were mentioned above - Old Navy is perfect for mat. clothes. If you buy a black t-shirt, it'll go with everything and you'll get tons of wear out of it.

Congratulations to you!
 

DivaDiamond007

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My grandmother gave me the best advice when I told her I was pregnant. She told me to RELAX and to be CALM or I''d pass my nerves onto the baby. I was very relaxed during my pregnancy, labor and delivery and it helped me so much. I didn''t call or run to the OB at every twitch and twinge, I ate the right foods for the most part
, I stayed active as much as I could tolerate and I didn''t worry about something being wrong with the baby. I took care of myself, and in turn my body took care of my little boy. I remembered to take my prenatals everyday and I went to all of my scheduled OB visits - prepared with any questions/concerns that I had.

I wish I had known more about postpartum depression though. I went through a really rough patch shortly after my son was born and I should have gotten help sooner than I did. DH and I went through several major upheavals at the same time and that didn''t help my mental state at all. If you are feeling more than just "down" after delivering then please, please, please call your doctor and get some help.
 

steph72276

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MC mentioned teeth and I will add something to that. Before I got pregnant, I had never had a cavity in my life. Then during my pregnancy I got 2. The dentist said I wasn''t getting enough calcium and the baby would "take it" from my teeth and he called them "pregnancy cavities". I was eating yogurt and cheese, but couldn''t force down milk to save my life. Next time, I will try harder to get in some more milk!
 

Hudson_Hawk

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Date: 3/15/2009 9:54:37 PM
Author: steph72276
MC mentioned teeth and I will add something to that. Before I got pregnant, I had never had a cavity in my life. Then during my pregnancy I got 2. The dentist said I wasn''t getting enough calcium and the baby would ''take it'' from my teeth and he called them ''pregnancy cavities''. I was eating yogurt and cheese, but couldn''t force down milk to save my life. Next time, I will try harder to get in some more milk!

I''m not pregnant, but wanted to comment. If you can''t drink milk, you can take tums for extra calcium. Plus there''s the added antacid benefit!
 

sbde

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hey peonygirl...

everyone's given some great info here. as far as what was most surprising to me about the whole pregnancy/delivery was how unprepared i was for the recovery period right after the birth. i always stressed about delivery because people's birth stories are always discussed and of course we tend to hear about horror stories from people but in my case at least the recovery period was more difficult than the delivery itself. i wish someone had told me to prepare to not be able to do very much at all in terms of walking around comfortably and being independent for at least 2 wks after the birth.

not saying any of this to scare you, in fact i hope my experience is the exception rather than the norm and you have no tearing and a trouble free birth but just
make sure to accept lots of help and take it easy in the beginning !
 

qtiekiki

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RELAX & take care of yourself, just like everyone else said. That''s the most important. Your body know what to do. So just try to stay healthy, but don''t stress if you want to eat/crave junk food now and then. I had more than my share of junk food when I was pregnant.

Enjoy your pregnancy - it''ll go by so fast, and before you know it, you''ll miss the kicks. Just take it easy and enjoy.

Keep an open mind about labor & delivery - This is the best way to be prepared. Read up on all types of birth, even if you have your mind set on one.
 

Pandora II

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Books I liked: The Panic Free Pregnancy and The Best Friend''s Guide to Pregnancy

Things I wish I had known:

- It is possible to seriously loathe being pregnant whilst still being very happy to be having a baby

- That even in the 21st century there are employers who think it''s fine to try and make you redundant because you are pregnant, and that suing your employer is a miserable, stressful and all-consuming process that takes months and months.

Things I have discovered:

- If you get very severe morning sickness - ie 24/7 nausea plus throwing up multiple times a day - get your doctor to prescribe something asap. There are very safe options available and the sooner you start to treat the m/s the easier it is to treat and you are less likely to end up in hospital on an IV.

- Bits of you will hurt that you didn''t know existed!
 
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