Last year I become pregnant for the first time and this year I birthed my first child. It was a whirlwind of emotions. I was happy, scared, anxious, overjoyed, etc. So if this is your first roadeo here are a few things I learned during my pregnancy journey. Please note, I am not a doctor so I will not be giving medical advice. Consult your doctor for medical consultation.
Don’t believe all the horror stories.
I have found that for some reason people feel compelled to tell you all their pregnancy and delivery horror stories when you’re pregnant . Let me preface this with first saying that all woman who have gone through any stage of pregnancy should be able to openly and honestly share their story without criticism and rudeness. However, keep in mind that pregnancy and delivery can be a scary thing and not all pregnant woman want to hear the possible horrors of the birthing process, especially first time moms. It’s always a great idea to ask the pregnant woman first if they want to hear your story and be open to letting them stop you during your story. And if you are that mom that doesn’t want to hear all the horror stories that’s ok! You do whatever is best for you and your child. That might mean stopping someone from sharing their experience or asking them to wait to tell you about it until after you birth your child. Never feel obligated to listening to a story that may stress you out or cause you anxiety. Those woman have the right to share their story but you also have the right to not listen to it if that means keeping you and your child healthy and happy.
Understand that all pregnancies are different & that you are justified in your emotions & pain.
Like stated above, you may hear a lot of horror stories when it comes to pregnancy and delivery. Remember, all pregnancies are different. This is something my doctor told me that really helped me because woman would constantly compare their experience with mine. I found this especially true in the older community. I would say things like, “I can’t eat that, my doctor told me not to.” I would then hear a long argument about how doctors are overprotective of their patients and how they ate said food all throughout their pregnancy and they were fine. Or I would have some sort of pain and older women would tell me to “suck it up” that I was treating my pregnancy like a “disability” or would say something equally rude to me. I think, for the most part, people are well intended. But why is it not ok to share your pain or trails when it comes to pregnancy? If I had any other aliment people wouldn’t dare say those rude comments. So why is it ok in pregnancy? It’s not. Honestly, there were a few people I just stopped talking to during my pregnancy because I thought it was the most safe decision for my baby. When your prego you don’t need any extra stress because it can cause complications. People are going to be rude and most of the time they don’t understand how hurtful their comments can be and the effect those comments can have on your pregnancy. However, remember that you are strong, you are justified in your pain, and that just because someone else has not experience your pregnancy issues doesn’t mean that you are not justified in your emotion or physical trial. And always, consult a medical professional if needed. It’s also a good idea to talk to your doctor about ways to relieve stress.
Don’t let miscarriage stories scare you.
When I first found out I was pregnant many woman shared with me their miscarriage stories and this honestly devastated me. I have never gone through a miscarriage. It has to be emotionally and physically devastating. Something that is a life-long healing journey. I felt so privileged that these women wanted to share their experience with me. And I’m sure those women just needed to talk about their experience as part of their healing journey. But that was not the appropriate time to share that experience. Women who are pregnant, especially during the first trimester, don’t need to hear stories of things that can go wrong. Stress can play a huge roll in the health of your child and hearing miscarriage stories can cause stress to your pregnancy. Hearing these stories caused me anxiety and everyday I would hold my stomach and cry thinking I may lose my unborn child. This got better in my second trimester but those stories are what triggered that anxiety. As a new mommy, I wish I had gracefully and tactfully stopped those ladies from sharing their experience and asked them to share after the birth of my daughter.
Enjoy the attention.
So I am very outgoing but I do not like being the center of attention. It was so embarrassing to have the extra looks in the grocery stores, receive a ton a presents in front of everyone, and be the center of conversion with my family. It something I just wasn’t use to and I felt so embarrassed all the time. But what I learned was to embrace the attention. People are curious, excited for you, and want to show you love. And trust me, once you have the beautiful baby all eyes will be on your new child so enjoy the extra attention and find comfort knowing that your baby will make this go away once birthed.
Don’t let vagina stretching scare you from a vaginal birth if that is a method you are considering.
I don’t know about you but I was so scared to have any kind of birth. I thought, if I have a vaginal birth that my vagina is going to get all stretched out and torn up and if I have a c-section I have to undergo major surgery. This is a decision that you’ll have to make with your doctor and or midwife. The most important thing for me was having a medical professional on my side who I could trust with my life and the life of my child. For me, this was my doctor. She was knowledgeable, kind, respectful, and fought for my birth plan. She told me ahead of time that she did not give c-section unless medically necessary and she explained why. (Most doctors follow this rule of thumb.) Now, I am not a medical professional so I won’t try to relay her explanation because it was very detailed and I do not want to misrepresent her explanation. So talk with your medical professional to learn more about your birthing options. I had a vaginal birth and I won’t tell you my birthing story right now only because I want you to have the option to not read it. Maybe, I’ll share that in a separate post. However, I did have a 2nd degree tare. The healing honestly didn’t hurt that much. For me, it didn’t feel as bad healing as people had told me to expect. And don’t worry, your vagina goes back to normal. That was also a misconception that so many people emphasized, “Your vagina will never be the same.” Lies! Your vagina will be fine and will back to normal in a few months. And if not, there are strategies you and your doctor can talk about to get back to comfortable feeling for you.
Enjoy all the little moments with your unborn child.
Every kick, dance move, and flutter your baby makes is something that only you can feel from the inside out. Whoa! That’s so cool! Life is such an incredible gift and that fact that we get to be part of it is so humbling. Enjoy all those little moments getting to know your child before they are born. You’ll only have this time with them once so enjoy it.
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