When I was pregnant with my firstborn, I had no idea what I was doing. Now that I’m expecting with my third, I still have my moments, but at least I’ve gleaned some lessons along the way (mostly the hard way). Whether you’re a new mom or an old pro, here are my top ten pregnancy tips.
1. Don’t spend a ton on maternity clothes
Invest in a few essentials, but otherwise buy maternity clothes secondhand and save that money for diapers. If you must buy new, get flowy tops and generously draped cardigans in the “regular” section of stores; you’ll get longer wear out of them after you deliver.
2. Stretch marks happen
I used cocoa and shea butter religiously the first two pregnancies to no avail. Stretch marks come with the territory, so embrace them as souvenirs, not blemishes.
3. Appease your sweet tooth once in a while
4. Don’t get a mom haircut
One day we’ll understand the scientific correlation between big life changes and the urge to chop our hair. But for now, ask yourself if you really want/will look good in that drastic ‘do that you’ll most likely regret.
5. Ask the stupid questions
Even if they seem obvious. Ask your doctor or midwife the “whys” of all those pregnancy rules you read about, or ask your mom friend how to hold and burp a newborn. The only way you’ll ever look silly is when you don’t take advantage of the resources you have.
6. Stop obsessing about baby stuff
There are great online resources that suggest the “best of”, but I promise you, when baby comes she will not care whether that stroller had a snack tray.
7. Formulate a parenting plan
Sit with your partner and hash out how you want to raise your child, what your family values will be, and the roles each of you will play. No matter how abstract (like your thoughts on discipline) or practical (like how to tackle nighttime feedings), it’s a golden opportunity to iron out expectations and lay the groundwork for your parenting philosophy.
8. Find a mommy group before you deliver
Community is so essential in those exhausting, often isolating, first few months. Befriend other mommies in your area or check out playgroups and classes before baby comes so that you’ll have support from the get go.
9. Accept help. Often
If that neighbor you don’t really talk to suddenly wants to help you carry in your groceries, let him. If friends offer to babysit your toddler, ask what time. No one doubts that you are or will be a supermom, but even superheros need sidekicks.
Take time to marvel. Journal, talk to your baby, meditate, pray. Do whatever it takes for you to slow down and focus on what’s really important: this precious life that’s about to change yours forever.
About Selena Kohng
I'm a freelance writer and editor for parenting websites, home and garden websites, and my six-year-old's homework (editor, not writer, that is). I've got two misters and a little miss on the way. You can find me writing about my parenting adventures at howaboutcookie.wordpress.com.Web | Twitter | More Posts (6)