When I told one of my girlfriends that I was pregnant several months ago, I remember her saying, “pregnancy is an emotional journey”. At the time, I didn’t fully grasp the meaning behind it, but as the months unfold I now see how right she is. Each week, month, and trimester have brought new challenges and new joys. The joys have been more than I ever could’ve expected. Even though I haven’t met her on the outside yet, I feel like she has changed my life for the better. She’s always the first thought I have when my eyes open and my last thought before drifting off to sleep. It’s hard for me to believe that during the first trimester I had major doubts about being pregnant and a few weeks that were incredibly low (thanks, hormones). I worried that I wasn’t cut out for this responsibility, wondering if I had made the right decision. Luckily, Eric was there to support and remind me how capable I am. He said – We are a team. I’m not doing this alone. We will figure it out together. Hearing this made the world of difference and I stopped feeling so alone.
Pregnancy Books: For the first several months of my pregnancy, I barely read anything about pregnancy (except for Googling all my symptoms, hah). The first book I read was Jenny McCarthy’s Belly Laughs (mainly because it’s been everywhere for the past several years) and to be honest, it made me feel a bit discouraged. Sure, some parts were funny (I did laugh out loud a few times!), but overall I found that the book instilled fear about pregnancy and birth, at least for me who is anxious by nature. Who knows, maybe I would feel differently if I read it now versus the hormonal first trimester.
Now that I’m getting closer to the finish line, I find myself turning to pregnancy/labour/newborn books more than ever. I just can’t get enough and I want to read e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g I can get my hands on. The best advice I’ve heard so far: take all the advice/opinions with a grain of salt. While I certainly don’t agree with everything I read, it’s been fascinating to learn about different perspectives and approaches. A special thanks to a lovely blog reader Keri for passing along a few of her pregnancy books!
Secrets of The Mommyhood: Everything I wish someone had told me about pregnancy, childbirth and having a baby: A special shout-out to this book because I enjoyed it a lot. It’s filled with practical info from pregnancy all the way to newborn stuff. I have a lot of info bookmarked and highlighted to go back to. I bought it on Kindle and it was only $5, score.
I love how the book ends:
“The Only Thing That Really Matters:
There are millions of books, magazines and web sites that cover every facet of parenting out there. They can make you feel pressured to be the perfect mom and raise the perfect child. You should celebrate and enjoy your baby’s milestones. But remember, how early they roll over, stand, walk, talk or potty train doesn’t matter at all in the grand scheme of things. I have found that in the end there is only one thing that really matters. You can give your child every comfort and luxury in the world, but all they really want is you. Mommy and me classes, baby sign language and the latest and greatest toys are not really what it’s about. You don’t have to give your child any of these things to be a good mom. All you have to do is be there. And that, my friends, is the Mommyhood. (As I see it anyway).” [excerpted from Secrets of The Mommyhood: Everything I wish someone had told me about pregnancy, childbirth and having a baby. Alexander, Heather]
Symptoms of late:
Preggo brain. I haven’t noticed having “preggo brain” too much during my pregnancy (if anything, I think all the omega-3’s and DHA oils are speeding up my brain), but it might be showing signs lately. The other night Eric and I were on a walk and as we passed another couple I said, “good morning!”. It was 8pm…lol.
Braxton Hicks Contractions. I’ve been getting these for a couple weeks now. My stomach gets super firm and tight (like a hard basketball) for a minute or so. Eric finds it so amusing. The uterus is practicing for the big event which I think is a great idea. They aren’t painful (yet), just uncomfortable and they don’t happen very frequently (maybe a few times per week). I read that BH contractions can increase in frequency and intensity as the pregnancy gets closer, so we’ll see.
Sciatica: I’m experiencing sciatica pain on the lower left side of my back and butt. The area got really sore after my 3rd chiropractor treatment (she was working on this area), so I have since stopped going for adjustments for fear of aggravating the nerve even more. The chiro suggested regular icing and gentle stretching so that’s what I’ve been doing to help calm down the nerve. I also suspect that when the baby flipped head down her change in position disturbed the nerve even more. The pain has improved since last week (with regular icing/stretching), so hopefully it won’t get worse as she gets heavier. I think I just had bad luck with the chiropractor because I’ve heard it can help a lot of pregnant women.
Peaceful mind: I read that an increase in progesterone in the 3rd trimester can result in a “quiet mind” or feelings of calmness as the due date approaches, and I have definitely noticed this lately. I feel pretty relaxed, chilled out, and able to slow down much more. I almost feel like I’m on tranquilizers some days! Normally I am go-go-go and anxiety-prone so it’s been refreshing to feel so calm. The only downfall is that I’ve been less productive on the work front, so I’m struggling with a bit of guilt that I’m not getting as much done as I want to. I guess I better get used to it now!
Cravings: The past week was incredibly hot and humid (thank goodness for flat irons!). I’m still loving fruit (raspberries, watermelon, grapes, kiwi, cantaloupe), popsicles, coconut water, and chocolate hemp smoothies. Also, I can’t get enough of Organic Works vegan + gluten-free sliced oatmeal, flax, buckwheat bread. It’s just the best! I’m also going crazy for homemade salad dressings lately and I’ve been whipping up a new one every week and pouring it all over romaine salads. I hope to share a new fav. recipe soon. I can’t get enough. I’m also loving 365 brand popcorn when I’m craving something salty and crunchy.