Pregnancy Advice: Things I Wish I Knew Throughout Pregnancy

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There is a lot that goes through a pregnant woman’s mind…well, at least in my experience as a pregnant woman. Do I have everything I need for these little humans that are about to become a part of this Earth? Do they have enough socks to cover their little toes from cold air? Is this type of shampoo okay for their delicate heads? Should I get the Maxi Cosi car seats or a Chicco Keyfit – wait, maybe I should get something totally different?! What brand of sleep sack should I get and do they have enough newborn clothes? All of these questions ran through my mind as  I prepared for my little guys’ debut.

The day of my delivery had finally arrived. I was nervous, beyond anxious, so ready to meet my little humans, and extremely uncomfortable and over being pregnant. I remember circling Liam and Noah’s nursery the evening prior to my due date, double checking that I had everything they needed. “Oh my gosh,” I thought, “what if I don’t bring them enough clothes during their hospital stay?” I even packed little baby nail clippers and, not kidding, roughly ten outfits for each child. Looking back, I had some silly thoughts. A lot of my worries as a pregnant mom were goofy when I look back…but I also understand why I worried. It’s good to worry, to an extent. That’s why I compiled a list of things I wish I knew when I was pregnant.

Some of these things would’ve eased my mind and I promised myself not to fret as much if I have the blessing of being pregnant again later in life. Some of these might seem like an obvious thing, while others may be a surprise. Either way, I hope this helps you, pregnant mama. We’ve been there, and don’t worry because you’ve got this.

Choose to read only a few pregnancy books. I read about (don’t laugh) six or seven pregnancy books – several of them geared towards twin pregnancies. PSA: don’t do this because you will drive yourself insane. Here’s why: I was utterly overwhelmed with the amount of information my pregnancy brain was trying to comprehend. One book was telling me the best method to keep a baby sleeping through the night was by co-sleeping while another was telling me to start the boys in their cribs the first night they’re home. Meanwhile another book mentions the importance of baby wearing and another argues that it’s important that the baby isn’t just attached to their mom. The confusion was through the roof. It is important to note that these books are written by human beings who are absolutely entitled to their own opinions. But what it did for me is overwhelm me to maximum capacity. A few books are great because it gives you plenty of hearty advice, but still gives you a chance to make your own informed decision on what’s best for you and your baby. In the end, I realized that mother instinct trumps all baby books.

Mother instincts are a real thing. Piggy backing off of what I previously mentioned, there is some major truth behind the saying “follow your mom intuition.” My boys are getting close to age two and it has yet to fail me. When I was pregnant I had a huge fear that I wouldn’t have these so-called “mother instincts” and I was afraid that I wouldn’t know what to do in certain situations with my babies. The truth is you really do form this magic bond once your little one(s) enters the world. It’s a connection I can’t describe – but you know your baby more than anyone else. Trust your instinct and always follow your “mom gut.” It will most likely never fail you.

Sometimes less is more and simple is better. I wish I would’ve told my pregnant self this a thousand times. I am organized to the max and preparation is my middle name. I overwhelmed myself with all of the options out there that are on the market for babies. I mean, holy moly! Walking into Buy Buy Baby is enough to overwhelm any expecting mom. I literally can’t…it’s just too much! My first experience registering at a baby store was awful…like I got the sweats and had to sit down type of awful. I was confident and ready at the beginning with my scanner gun. By the end of it my brain couldn’t think straight with the overwhelming amount of baby items that were on display. I scanned at least three different pacifier brands, two diaper pails, and three different strollers. I went home and did my research on these items in order to narrow it down through my online registry. I ended up with way too many items that ended up going to waste because I thought I needed all of it. In the end, I believe there is no right or wrong to what baby item you choose. Most are very similar. It’s all a personal preference – what fits your style and will work best for your unique baby. Also, remember that your sweet newborn really just needs the essentials. They need cuddles, fresh diapers, milk, and a safe place to sleep. That’s really about it.

Used is good, too. I had the mindset that all things I purchased for my babies needed to be brand new. I think it was me being obsessive about everything matching and the boys having two of the same everything – from clothes to matching sheets. In reality, there are a lot of great secondhand items out there. Do not be afraid to seek out gently used baby clothes or a gently used bouncer. There is no shame in that game because you use the item for such a short period of time as it is. On the other hand, there are a few things that you might feel more comfortable getting new – such as a car seat. Do what feels right for you!

Try not to compare yourself to other moms. I was two days postpartum when I stumbled upon a twin moms Instagram account. She had a picture showing her one week postpartum belly while holding her two newborn babies. “Wow,” I thought, “she looks flawless.” My fragile hormonal self-esteem took toll and I felt horrible about the way I looked. Looking back I have to laugh. Good for that mom – she was blessed with an amazing bounce back body! And good for me, too. I just brought two beautiful humans into this world and I am blessed to be in good health. It is hard not to compare yourself to other moms, especially with social media. There is a significant importance in lifting all moms up regardless of whether or not I do the same thing they do or something completely different. We are a tribe and we are all a part of this crazy special part of life that is being a mom.

Cherish the small moments. This sounds cliche and slightly cheesy, but I mean it! Life gets hectic, especially when babies are added to the mix. Realistically speaking, not every moment is going to be cherished. There’s always an endless to-do list of things that need done, such as a never-ending pile of dirty baby clothes and bottles that need washed. I have been working on letting things go sometimes so that I can really soak in some of those small, but special moments with my boys. I blink and they are another inch taller and making another new discovery. They are little for such a short period of time and I want to make sure that I cherish my time with them at every stage. It is the simple moments that make life worth it. 

The list above were the bigger things I wish I knew when I was pregnant. Listed below are smaller things that I find crucial to do during pregnancy. Here it goes:

  • There is no shame in getting a pregnant massage or weekly pedicures just for the foot and chair massage.
  • Being pregnant is a busy time, but make sure you put your feet up and enjoy feeling those baby kicks and making “you” time.
  • Craving chocolate dipped pretzels loaded with extra crunchy peanut butter and sprinkles? Weird combo, but go for it. Follow your cravings…you deserve it.
  • Take advantage of “pregnant parking” spots and people offering to help you with anything and everything.
  • Attend baby classes that are offered – such as ones offered at hospitals.
  • Find a mom group to join so that you can relate to women in a similar situation. Nothing beats having a mom tribe.
  • Educate yourself on the different birthing methods, but try not to over-stress about them because sometimes birth goes the way it chooses to go with or without a plan.
  • Make an action plan for the visitors right after birth so that you can really enjoy the moment, versus stressing on who is going to see the baby and when. Additionally, think of a meal plan for those first few weeks.
  • Enjoy pregnancy as best you can – it really is a special time in life.

I hope some of these helped you! I have so much more I could go on about, which is why I will most likely be making a revised version in the future. Feel free to add to my list in the comment section below – I’d love to hear from you! Keep calm and mom on.

XOXO,

Bri

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Brianna is a 20-something stay-at-home mama to twin boys, Liam and Noah, and a crazy yellow lab, Zoey. She is married to her high school sweetheart, Spencer. Although a piece of her heart will always lie within her Midwestern roots, her family currently resides in sunny (and prickly) Phoenix. Prior to spending her days in leggings and messy buns, she was a high school English teacher to some pretty awesome kiddos. Staying at home with her boys is one of her favorite seasons in life thus far and she is excited to share it with you! Aside from being a stay-at-home mama her passions include hiking, indulging in anything that contains chocolate, reading a good book, photography, interior design and organizing, drinking hot coffee with cream, and brunching. Sit back and relax, enjoy reading her triumphs mixed with the best days of motherhood. We are a tribe as moms and this is motherhood uncensored.

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