I wrote this with so many wonderful friends in mind! You will all be wonderful mothers and I can’t wait to see you in action!
1: If you think you are ready for kids, make sure your marriage is ready first! I have heard people say that they had a child because they thought it would make things better and strengthen their marriage. Yeah, NO. It doesn’t work that way. In fact children make you fight more, and in an extremely passionate way, because you went through hell to birth them. So NO!
2: Contrary to what your mother said about keeping your clothes on and legs closed in high school and college, you don’t necessarily get pregnant that easily. There is a short window when the time is just right and if you get in just the right position. Ha ha ha. Or you lay in bed with your legs up in the air right after. Ha ha ha. Then maybe, just maybe, it will work. But, maybe not. So don’t stress. Enjoy the husband. Enjoy the sex. And enjoy not having 5 minutes to get it done because your kids are about to wake up from a nap or walk into the room. Seriously, it’s totally Gods timing and not your own, I learned this and you will too.
3: Feeling hungry? Craving that piece of chocolate that you usually refuse because of the calories but today you decided it was totally worth it AND it tasted decadent? Oh, you’re bloated and a couple days late? No. Couldn’t be. But surprise! Bye bye sleep forever! You can’t believe it? You’re so excited! You can’t talk to anyone about it but the hubs. You want to tweet and Facebook and Instagram the big news but you are only 831 hours pregnant or 5 weeks and you have to zip it. Darn. Call the OB and make sure it’s legit ASAP. Oh, she won’t see you until you’re 6 weeks. What?! You have to wait!? Ahhhhhhhhh!
4: FYI, if you think you’re going to get that ultrasound like every movie you’ve ever seen, think again. Brace yourself. They are sticking a dildo up your hoo-ha. For real. It’s not the warm and fuzzy depiction of the gel on your tummy and the little round machine to hear the heartbeat. It’s a vaginal ultrasound so make sure you’re nice and trimmed so no one gets lost in that jungle. They have to do it this way because the baby is teensy and it is the only way to hear the boom boom boom that puts you at ease and makes you understand that THIS is happening. They will give you pictures of something that looks like a bean. You will heart it. You will stare at it twenty times a day. You will have to tell someone because if not, you will burst at the seam. Ok, tell your mom, or your sister, or your best friend but then stop.
5: There is a reason you don’t share your ecstatic news with the whole wide world at 5 weeks. Sometimes it is not the right time. Sometimes things go wrong. Sometimes your excitement can turn to complete loss and sadness and its nothing you did or didn’t do. It’s just life. And it sucks. And it’s Gods will but you don’t want to hear that. Nothing anyone can say will make you feel better so this is why you shut your trap about being pregnant. It’s so easy to tell people you are pregnant but sooooo much harder to tell them you aren’t anymore. So please, save yourself the pain if this turns out to be part of your story. But don’t worry. This is just a chapter and not the book. Sorry, but you need to know this.
6: Everything is peachy until you hit 7 weeks and then your mouth starts to water and you want to ralph. Things sounded good when you ordered them on the menu but now that it is in front of you, that first bite was your last. Gross. Can I get a milkshake? Oh, you may be one of the lucky ones that never gets sick or feels bad. I don’t like you. That’s not fair. I realize that when people find out they are preggers they begin eating like the supermarket is shutting down forever when that little bean in your uterus is not benefitting or retaining any of the excessive weight you are so easily adding to Mr. Scale. So stop. Continue on your usual diet with an occasional dessert or crackers to keep Ralph away but no need to go cray cray. Save it for the last month when you can’t do anything BUT sit and eat and the baby is actually gaining something.
7: You hit 12 weeks and you see the heartbeat the normal tummy way and in the past couple weeks you have an actual baby with legs and arms!! Wow!! Is it a boy or a girl? Ugh, you have to wait a couple more weeks. But you got to see the bambino and that thing is so cute!! You can tell everyone and you’ve already Pinterested the best way to announce it. Enjoy! Buy the bellyband ASAP because now you can’t button your pants and you are peeing every ten minutes. Who are you?
8: Have I mentioned boob job yet? You might be in awe of the voluptuousness of the girls these days. They are big. Take yourself to Gap Body and buy a simple pullover bra. It is extremely soft and does the job of keeping them up without being uncomfortable. They will get bigger like your butt, thighs, and belly. Have a good time with that. You may also wonder why your nipples are getting darker, my friend calls them chocolate pancakes, don’t worry, it is just so the baby can see them better and zone in on the milk.
9: The waiting game begins. You obsess about the baby inside of you and long for the OB appointment to hear the heartbeat. What if something has happened and you don’t know!? Relax. Groupon has a fetal heartbeat monitor listed this week. If you think it’s going to help you sleep at night then buy it. If you aren’t sleeping now then I got news for you darling, it gets significantly worse but that’s number —. Your OB doesn’t want to see you for another month. That’s no fun. But she wants you to go to this other place so the vampires can draw all the blood out of your body. I am not lying. What in the world are they going to do with 14 viles of your blood? Look up OB Diagnostic Centers in the dictionary, vampire will be in the definition.
10: Sleep. You want it all the time. Enjoy these months when you can come home from work and crawl into bed and tell the husband downstairs to eat some cereal. Then remind him to bring you some too. You may be able to sleep early in your pregnancy but sometime after 15 weeks insomnia hits and you spend random hours when you should be snoozing, looking up crib patterns from pottery barn on your iphone while he snores next to you. Get use to this. Once your little angel is here it will continue. You will buy extra pillows to help you try and get comfortable but alas, there is no perfect position and you will continue to toss and turn for many nights to come.
11: You signed up for some classes at the hospital so you are all prepared and ready for birth. I am laughing out loud now, can you hear me? I did this. They showed us videos, I felt prepared, I toured the hospital and got the low down on admitting. We did an infant CPR class which is 100% worth it but now I can’t remember a single thing they said. You can do infant massage, breathing techniques, breastfeeding preparedness and now I’m laughing harder. Nothing will prepare you. Honestly, go ahead and take them, it won’t hurt, but after two births I can’t say I used anything they told me. The breastfeeding class was probably the biggest waste because putting a fake baby in a sling hold next to your boob is a joke. Maybe taking a bee and letting it sting your nipple would be a better choice for what it really feels like. Do not freak out if you are reading this as a mother of 10 and you’ve breastfed all your kids and loved it. That is me too! Best thing ever for me and my children but I’m just saying it is some serious pain during those first few weeks after the little one arrives and the class I took did not prepare me.
12: Wear tight clothes. I’m going to say this again. Wear tight clothes. I did an experiment when I was pregnant and this is what I found. On the days I wore loose fitting dresses and shirts, people told me I was huge, having twins, and wondered how I was going to go another 15 weeks. And on the opposite spectrum, the days I wore something black and tight I was somehow the smallest pregnant woman they had ever seen and how could I possibly be 25 weeks. Buy black tight clothes and wear them all day everyday. You are welcome.
13: Hmmm, Buy Buy Baby? Babies-R-Us? Where to register? Poke your eyes out with needles. This exercise will drain you and leave you having a tantrum on the floor like the two year old you will have in no time. Registering for wedding gifts = fun! Registering for a baby you don’t even know how to hold = Impossible! Toys, swaddles, monitors, breastpumps, highchair, carseat, stroller, bath, towels, diapers, wipes and then they have it in 5 million brands and colors so have at it. And they may not have it in the store so go online and check to see what other colors they have available and then magnify the picture so you can see the purple polka dots that make it tacky and start from scratch. Quick side note: take a friend that just did this and make her register for you, tell her that’s all you want for a gift because it will be the best present ever.
14: Take a prenatal yoga class. Not so much for the exercise, but so you can see that other women are going through the same things you are and they pee five times an hour too. If you pick a place that specializes in prenatal yoga the teacher may also be a Doula and this is what you want to hear. Who cares if you break a sweat. This woman can tell you how she helped deliver a baby last night or had a problem with your hospital a month ago and they wanted to C-Section a mom before she was ready. They can be a wealth of knowledge while giving you some stretching exercises to give your back ten seconds of relief. The wonderful lady I went to made me laugh out loud when she told the class “Have your husband speak to your vagina at night so the baby wants to begin coming down the birth canal”. Yes, this really came out of her mouth!
15: When you have your baby shower please don’t open every single present (unless its under 15 people). Ain’t nobody got time for that!
16: You have made it to the last trimester! You go girl! Now stop and rest. You can’t breathe and you are ready for this thing to come out but you have another 10 weeks. Finish the baby’s room, wash the clothes, and pop a Tums. No, it isn’t the throw up flu that keeps coming up your esophagus, it is that greasy hamburger you shoveled and the baby ain’t happy about it. Keep a roll in your car for emergencies.
17: There is an alien taking over your body by this point. When you lay on your back you can see things ripple across your stomach as they poke your ribs and kick your bladder. This thing is nocturnal and the second you want to crash for the night, the alien wakes up and wants to party. Oh darling, this is the beginning of the end, God’s way of getting you ready for many sleepless nights. Start working on your birth plan. Ha ha ha ha ha ha.
18: C-section or vaginal birth? This will be the first of many political decisions you make for your child. Do you want an epidural? Will you breastfeed? When will you give them shots? When will you start solid foods? When will you let them cry themselves to sleep? When will you take away the bottle? What school will you send them to? The list goes on and on. Don’t judge. Just don’t judge. Everyone has there own opinion but you are the mommy and you are right. Do what you think is best and just smile and acknowledge all the advice people will give you. They are always right and so are you!
19: This kid is going to come on his/her own time. I ate every kind of spicy food, I had sex, I did jumping jacks, I walked 3 miles a day, I took crazy advice from clients and nothing worked. She came a week late and I had to be induced. I survived, you will too.
20: I am going to end on this note. Things begin to get a little graphic at this point. I want to prepare you for a complete loss of all modesty once you enter the hospital for the birth. They don’t care if you want your shirt on or your wedding ring. Everything comes off and “buck naked” is the name of the game. I died. It is ok, you will get through this, every woman does. The prize is almost in your arms. The birth will be amazing and make up for all the yucky stuff you have to deal with after. Buy tight fitting grandma underwear to hold in the massive pads you are going to have to wear. Get ready for weeks of blood coming out of your hoo-ha. Yes, this is true. No one talks about this stuff but it is no fun and it is a need to know in my book!
I am sure I have forgotten so many things but this is a short synopsis of what I deem to be very important information for any woman that plans on starting a family in the next couple years. It is a magical and emotional roller coaster. You are beginning the most amazing journey and nothing will ever compare to this in your life. PLEASE READ THIS NEXT PART CAREFULLY. Enjoy all these firsts with your husband and newborn. Sleep on the couch with your munchkin on our chest, snuggle extra long on Saturday mornings, and take long walks holding hands and pushing the stroller. Get excited when she rolls over for the first time and laugh out loud when her face puckers at the first taste of real food. You will only experience these things once because when number two comes along, the first child will be body checking her and fighting for your attention they use to always have. Oh wait, that’s my life now. As I type this, my first is convincing my second to jump off the top of the couch arm and dive into a cushion only to be knocked off onto the ground. And this lasts for 4 minutes until someone gets elbowed, kicked, or chips a tooth. What happened to the snuggle time again? To all the awesome moms out there reading this, I encourage you to add to my list! Help other future mommies prepare for the inevitable and try to make them laugh while it happens. I hope you are all blessed by the child that calls you mom and that God shows you the right choices that need to be made.
“I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him” 1 Samuel 1:27