Monday, October 5, 2015

9 tips in 9 months

Coming off the heels of my pregnancy, I feel like I have more wisdom regarding those special 9 months. I realize every woman and every pregnancy are different but the fundamentals are still the same. So, I'm sharing what I've learned this time around.

Month 1. I had absolutely no idea I was pregnant at this point. We weren't trying but we weren't preventing. But luckily I was taking a prenatal vitamin- just in case. I skipped days here and there but I was also trying to improve my diet. 

Takeaway tip #1 Even if you are just "seeing what happens" take the vitamin daily!

Month #2. This is the point when I found out I had baby #2 on board. I was committed to taking my prenatal vitamin. And exercising. Unfortunately for me I couldn't keep up with the exercise. I struggled with fatigue and balancing an already busy life of husband, 3 year old, work, and various other obligations. I was also a nervous wreck that this wouldn't last. I used positive pregnancy affirmations and lots of encouraging talks with my husband to get me through this month. 

Takeaway tip #2: stay positive and enjoy every single moment of this beautiful journey that you can. 

Month #3. This is around the time most couples typically make their big announcement to the world. I opted to wait awhile longer due to my history. I just didn't want to deal with the what-if's. My journey is a very personal one and didn't way to deal with thrones of people with questions and whatnot- so I held onto my joy a little longer than most. But if you have no reason to otherwise I'd say shout it from the mountain tops! It's such a happy time in your life why no let it show?!

Takeaway tip #3: Don't be afraid to share your joy! 

Month 4: Things are getting really real now and probably have already begun to show. If you are the type- do a fun photo project to document your pregnancy.  Even if you don't always feel the best do it anyway. It'll be fun and nostalgic to look back on this time and reminisce on how things were before your family expanded. Perhaps you can use it to compare a future pregnancy or your child may want to know what your experience was. It's crazy how much we can forget as time passes on. 

Takeaway tip #4: Document your journey- it'll be fun to look back on later.

Month #5: Plan a getaway! I know the babymoon market is beginning to take off but seriously if you can-do it. Life as you know it is about to change and who knows when your next opponent might be?! It doesn't have to be an extravagant trip oversees. You can do a cute weekend getaway to just about anywhere. Perhaps explore another place within your state of residence, get a hotel room and indulge in room service, or go to a bed and breakfast and just relax. The possibilities are endless!

Takeaway tip #5: Use the "babymoon" as an opportunity to relax and reconnect with your partner. 

Month #6: Start your baby prep. I actually start my prep a little earlier so I can plan and accommodate unforeseen circumstances. For instance when expecting my son it took me nearly a month to clean out the spare bedroom for his nursery. I didn't realize how much stuff I actually had piled in there. It was our catch all space. But otherwise now is a good time to go ahead and start getting the nursery together. That way you'll have time to make it all come together! 

Takeaway tip #6: Get the nursery together!

Month #7: Get ready for baby's debut. Learn all you can about the labor and delivery process, what to expect, and your options. This will help you to get the most out of baby's debut. But it doesn't stop there- you'll also want to prepare yourself for postpartum changes too. Having the knowledge before hand can make a difference later. 

Takeaway tip #7: Take a childbirth prep course (usually hosted at your local hospital) to get familiar with what to expect. 

Month #8: We opted not to have a baby shower the second time around but for our first- we did. Ideally, someone would be hosting this for you so all you have to do is show up! This is always a fun celebration of your journey into motherhood and your loved ones are likely happy to share in this special time with you. Even if you aren't into cheesy baby shower games there's still fun to be had!

Take away tip #8: Others are likely wanting to share in your joy. Use this as an opportunity to share your impending arrival with your loved ones!

Month #9: The moment you've been preparing for these past nine months is finally here. There is no better moment than meeting your baby for the first time. Enjoy it as much as possible. The birth that you've planned may or may not have happened but don't let that ruin this momentous occasion. Both of my deliveries went better than I anticipated but everyone isn't always as fortunate. If you find yourself delivering in a way you hadn't anticipated- try not to dwell on it. The most important thing is that you and your baby remain safe and healthy. 

Takeaway tip #9: The finish line is oh so sweet. Your life has changed for sure- savor every moment regardless of how your bundle of joy got here.

Bonus: The fourth trimester. A time of foggy bliss. Sleep deprivation, healing, and getting to know your sweet little one hits you like a ton of bricks! It's easier said than done but take it easy! Ease back into your day to day life slowly but surely. You never get these moments back so don't rush it.  

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