This year I’ve taken on one of the biggest projects of my life. I’m having my first baby! I’m expecting a baby girl due on the 25th December. As well as feeling very excited, I also found the first three months pretty scary and confusing so here is a list of what I discovered along the way which I hope will help you tackle those tricky first few months.
Its not necessarily like the movies when girl throws up and then girl discovers she is pregnant announcing to the world and still looking bloody amazing to boot. I didn’t have a clue but I was waking up in the middle of the night feeling really hot. Then a couple of nights in a row I started getting bad cramps in my tummy. Turns out that was the uterus expanding and nothing to worry about but I did end up going to a walk in clinic just to be certain everything was alright.
Be prepared to feel like you have the ultimate hangover…
And a 12 week one at that! Everyone seems to be on some sort of sliding scale of moaning sickness. You could be perfectly fine or unable to move away from your bathroom. I found myself somewhere near the good end. I was tired and nauseous but luckily wasn’t physically sick.
I found that my skin, hair, nails all started to suffer as nutrients were going elsewhere. So keeping to a good skin routine (which might be completely different normal) tying your hair back and forgetting about long shiny nails has to suffice. Or treat yourself to a bit of pampering and let the professionals take over.
The tiredness is unreal – I was in bed by 9pm every night but it really helps you feel tons better in the morning. Like a hangover, just listen to what your body needs and do it which leads me onto my next point….food!
You really don’t feel like eating for two…
Food is a really funny one at this stage. I went off pretty much everything but if I didn’t eat, I felt nauseous. Small and frequent meals and snacks helped me through the days. I can only describe my workbag at this stage as a horses nosebag full of snacks and drinks. I ate a lot of plain crisps and pasta which seemed to give me a boost and sipping coke kept the nausea down…I would even have a bottle of coke next to my bed just in case.
I discovered fruit tasted like heaven on earth and was really refreshing (and thank goodness good for me). One of the best remedies I found for the nausea was Liquorish All-Sorts. You’d think this would be the last thing you want to eat – and it kind of is – however, a couple of sweets each time it started getting bad really helped. You’ll soon figure out what works for you.
It’s scary and lonely but you’re not alone…
No matter how ecstatic you are about being pregnant it can still be a lonely and daunting 12 weeks – especially when you are advised not to share the news. Fingers crossed you are getting all the support you need from your partner but I also found telling some close friends early on reassuring as they were great at sharing the excitement, spending time going out to eat or staying in to watch movies (the only two activities I felt up to) but more importantly I thought that if anything wrong did happen – my friends would be there to support me through that too.
Visit your doctor…
I know this sounds obvious but I didn’t really know when to visit the doctor. I went around 10 weeks and got told off by the GP (who was a bit of a monster) but it left me feeling really deflated. So don’t worry about visiting your GP sooner than I did. Your first appointment is a chance for them to register you as ‘pregnant’ they ask for the first day of your last period so they can calculate a due date, check your blood pressure and book your 12 week scan at the hospital. This is when it will all start feeling very real!
Go clothes shopping….
I found my body started changing shape quite early. Although I didn’t have any big bump, clothes just felt uncomfortable – especially jeans and bras! You won’t need any crazy maternity clothes just yet but I’d recommend a bra fitting and a shopping trip to find a few bits and bobs that will make you feel a little bit more comfortable.
Take time off work….
I felt like I needed to save my leave days for further down the line when I’d have a bigger bump to lug about plus what was the point of taking time off when I was feeling rubbish anyway? I realised that as you edge into trimester 2 you do start feeling tons better. Everyone kept on telling me this but I didn’t believe them. Now I really wished I’d taken the time off and enjoyed a staycation with plenty of box sets and snacks.
Getting to week 12….
By week 12 you will have your first scan and nothing can prepare you for seeing your baby for the first time. Just like magic the baby appears on the screen. It happened so fast I thought it must be the same video they show all pregnant ladies but no…it’s your very own bundle of joy. Although tiny, we watched arms kicking, arms moving around – just movements just like a baby makes and suddenly all the painful weeks behind you will feel so worth it.
Finally telling the world….
Don’t worry if you suddenly feel that telling everyone becomes quite daunting and you start to think about how people will react. Honestly, people react in different ways and they do surprise you, good and bad. The most important thing is that you are happy and that no matter what, the baby will have all the love in the world that he or she needs because you are its mum!
NB: I am not trained in any way or form in anything medical – other than applying plasters and the occasional paracetamol. If you are feeling worried or think that there is something wrong please speak with a professional – they are great, qualified and will give you all the support you need! Please do contact me though if you’d like to talk about cravings, clothes or just to have a general moan!