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1. Research C-Sections and Vaginal Births.
I was so convinced that my first born was going to be a c section that I never read anything on vaginal births. From exercises to help labor, to pushing, to recovery, I didn’t think any of that information would pertain to me. And wouldn’t you know it, I endured a 34 hour labor and a vaginal birth, absolutely clueless.
With my second pregnancy I’ve been reading about vaginal births and c sections because you just never know.
2. Your not made of glass.
From riding in a boat, to exercise, and exerting myself I was so scared that anything that did may hurt the baby. I spent my pregnancy acting like I was made of glass, and after our baby was born I felt like my bones and muscles were made of spaghetti noodles. I absolutely hated feeling so weak, especially with a new baby to take care of.
This time I try to be as active as I can so that I don’t feel so weak after the baby is born. I trust the my body will keep baby and I safe. I try to do cardio strength/training workout videos, walking around the neighborhood, and just keeping up with my toddler.
3. Calories still count.
I ate whatever I wanted with my first pregnancy. I couldn’t help but have that “whatever I’m pregnant” attitude about food. Turns out all that extra poundage does not come out with the baby. I was mortified with my postpartum body. I was able to lose the 40 pounds I had gained within 5 months (with the help of breastfeeding and calorie counting), but my body was still so changed. One person even said to me, when I was 6 months postpartum, carrying my son on my hip “oh my gosh your already pregnant again?!” Epic Fail!
This time I still eat what I want but I try to always put fruit and veggies first. I also know that many cravings go away if you just ride them out for a bit. I’m not depriving myself of anything (besides alcohol) and I’m certainly meeting my daily caloric needs, but I’m more aware that regardless of pregnancy calories are calories. And cheetos dipped in icing, although delicious, do not need to be eaten every day.
4. Don’t swear off ANYTHING!
I said that my exclusively breastfed baby was going to sleep in his crib, in his bedroom from day one. The first meal he ever had was formula and he slept in the bed with my husband and and I until he was 15 months old. Don’t swear off anything.
I haven’t said a word this pregnancy about my goals or intentions.
5. Don’t underestimate yourself.
Although I was so convinced that my baby would be a c section. I also knew that I had no intentions of feeling the true physical pains of child birth. I got an epidural pretty early in my labor. Looking back I wish I would have taken advantage of being able to walk around to help the baby move down more on his own. I bet my labor would’ve been shorter. And I bet I would’ve been able to handle the pain.
With my second pregnancy, I have been reading a lot of information about exercises that help you prepare for labor. I really want to help myself naturally as much as I can, before deciding whether or not to get an epidural.
6. Don’t rush your pregnancy.
At the end of my pregnancy I was so tired of being pregnant and I absolutely couldn’t wait to meet our baby. But I had no idea how much I would miss being pregnant. When your pregnant your baby is always with you. It eats when you eat and sleeps when you sleep (ideally). After that first baby comes you literally go into a culture shock of how drastically your life has changed.
My babies will be 21 months apart. Although being pregnant with a toddler is not the same as being pregnant with your first. I’m still making more of an effort to enjoy this pregnancy while it last and looking forward to meeting our little one when the time is right.