Probably one of the biggest life events that happens to many women is the first pregnancy. Every pregnancy is special, but the first pregnancy somehow holds the distinction of being the most memorable.
This is because you are experiencing motherhood for the first time: all its joys and all its difficulties. Pregnancy is a beautiful thing, but it is also very complicated. If you are a Type-A person, venturing into pregnancy will be like venturing into new and unexplored territory. Not everything will go as planned, and you will encounter a lot of challenges that you did not prepare for.
If you are planning to get pregnant, it is best to keep an open mind and expect the unexpected. But it definitely helps to be ready and be familiar with the turf you are about to explore. Before you get pregnant, there are some things that you might want to know – tips and pieces of advice from women who have been there.
After all, when it comes to pregnancy, no one knows better than a fellow mom.
9 Things You Might Want to Know Before Getting Pregnant
It’s challenging to prepare for something that you have never experienced yet. But with these pieces of advice from mothers who have been there, you might as well consider yourself armed and ready.
1. Sleep while you can before you get pregnant.
A lot of people talk about sleeping while you can before the baby arrives, but virtually nobody talks about sleeping even before you get pregnant. You see, even though you would like to sleep all day when you’re pregnant, sleeping with a growing tummy is not as simple as it sounds.
While you still can sleep in any position you prefer, sleep! If you are already pregnant and are having trouble sleeping, we suggest you get a soft body pillow that will help you be more comfortable.
2. Strangers will invade your personal space – don’t let them.
Speaking of a growing tummy, there seems to be something about it that people cannot resist. It’s really common to see a total stranger touching a pregnant woman’s belly on the street. But it does not need to be a thing.
If you are uncomfortable being touched by a stranger (a very understandable feeling), don’t be afraid to say no. You are not disrespecting another person by not allowing them to invade your personal space. Instead, you are helping them understand their boundaries.
3. You will experience all sorts of awkward moments, and it’s okay.
Pregnancy will be a forty-week journey filled with awkward moments, so be ready! As your body is working hard to adjust to this new life inside of you, you will also experience physical changes like gas, constipation, diarrhea, insomnia, even incontinence.
But all of these things are completely normal and are not reasons to be embarrassed. Simply prepare for the possibility of any of these happening, like bringing pads wherever you go and watching your diet.
4. Document your journey even if you don’t feel like doing so.
Many women feel less attractive when they are pregnant. While this is certainly not true, many pregnant women struggle with weight gain, acne, and fatigue. It’s understandable to not feel like taking a picture with all these changes taking place.
But pregnancy is not permanent. It will eventually come to pass, and believe it or not, you will miss being pregnant. So while you are still pregnant, document your journey and take a lot of photos!
5. You have to stay physically active whether you like it or not.
A lot of pregnant women struggle with fatigue and overtiredness, which makes sense because your body is working hard to nourish a little human being. But even if you feel like sleeping all day, it is important to get up and for regular physical activities.
Your body is going to thank you, especially when you are about to give birth. Pregnant women who exercise regularly are more equipped for labor and birthing than women who stayed idle.
Disclaimer: Don’t forget to get your doctor’s approval before doing physically straining activities.
6. Spend a lot of time with your partner while you still can.
It is normal to not want to be with your partner all the time when you are pregnant. Your hormones will be acting unpredictably, so there will be times that you can’t get enough of your partner, but there will be times that you will hate their scent with a passion.
But keep in mind that this is probably the last time that it will just be the two of you. When the baby arrives, you will be a family, and while you will still have each other, it will never be the same again. So take advantage of this time and make a lot of memories with each other.
7. Prepare your home for your baby ahead of time.
Do not wait until you are about to give birth before preparing your home for your baby! For starters, there will be a lot to do, and it is not possible to do all of them during your third trimester. While you can still move freely, start preparing your nursery with the help of your partner or a trusted friend.
It is also a good idea to start shopping for baby essentials like clothes and toys. There are a lot of gender-neutral options to choose from! Also, you might want to start slowly packing your maternity bag so that when the time comes, you are ready to go to the hospital.
8. It’s helpful to prepare a birth plan, but it’s okay if you don’t stick to it.
A birth plan is a document that details what type of birth you have, including your preferred labor and whether you prefer medication or not. Everyone will tell you to prepare a birth plan, and you absolutely should. It will give you a clearer idea of what to expect
If it is followed, you will have a positive birthing experience. But even if you have prepared a birth plan beforehand, complications may arise that will cause you to abandon your birth plan. This is completely fine. What’s important is that you are able to communicate with your doctor or midwife about what you want to happen.
9. Get a list of people who can help you after you give birth.
The truth is it is hard to parent alone. After you give birth, there will be so many things to do with a needy newborn baby in tow. It is easy to get overwhelmed, so don’t hesitate to ask for help.
Even when you are still planning to get pregnant, it is a good idea to start preparing a list of people to call. You may ask some people to help you look after the baby, and you can request some people to prepare dinner for you. It really does take a village to raise a child.
Don’t worry. You are going to conquer pregnancy like the warrior you are!