I am 32 weeks pregnant this week and honestly I have to say that all in all, pregnancy has been pretty amazing, fairly easy for my body (especially compared with the physical battles a lot of women face during pregnancy), and such a special, memorable, unique, and precious season of life -- a true GIFT from the Lord that I do not take for granted. I was one of those little girls who started "mothering" my dolls, baby sister, pets, friend's kids, Polly Pockets, you name it -- from an early age. And my biggest lifelong dream was always to be a mama. "My Plan A" (which you who have read At Long Last -- my life and love story book know) would have looked like getting married at age 18/19, having 8 babies all in a row, and being "mom and wife" all through my twenties and beyond. Yet, the Lord's plans are bigger (and better) than ours, and His plan for me was to get married and finally get to be a mother at age 29! And it's so so exciting to my heart, such a huge gift and responsibility, and something I am so thankful for.
Pregnancy is a whole new world, let me tell ya, ladies! Literally, my mind is boggled that our bodies are created to create new life. It's seriously amazing! These last seven months have made me realize -- wow, women are strong. I sometimes talk to or watch older ladies (who have one, two, five, or thirteen babies) and am just in awe that they've gone through growing and birthing a baby, and then raising them -- it is a huge accomplishment. Pregnancy -- whether it's "easy" for you or "harder" -- is just a lot. It's a lot on your body, a lot on your emotions, a lot on your heart and mind. And I don't think I fully realized until walking through it (and being almost done now) how huge it is! How beautiful, hard, and big. Mamas, you are amazing. And this thing called pregnancy and having a baby, and raising that baby (whether you carried him or her for nine months and gave birth or not) is the most important thing in the world -- we are part of investing in and are used by the Lord to create an eternal being -- a person who will live forever! It's amazing! We are in this together, ladies -- and it's a beautiful thing.
So for you mamas, mamas to be, gals who dream of being pregnant someday -- I thought I'd share some of my favorite things that have helped me, encouraged me, and made pregnancy a little easier and more comfortable (because, let's face it, it can be super uncomfortable!)
Morning sickness differs for every woman (and some don't ever experience it!) but in my experience this pregnancy, it hit me at week 8 and was pretty much consistent until week 14 -- then, it totally went away (all the praise hands!) For me personally, nausea is one of my least favorite feelings because you can't really make it go away. I only threw up a few times (sorry, TMI... but between girlfriends, there really isn't any TMI when chatting about pregnancy haha! ;) but was constantly nauseous and just had a gross feeling. My sense of smell and taste are much keener than normal, and so every yucky smell made me gag. We were living right on the beach in LA during my first trimester, and I could literally smell the fishy ocean smell out my window (which I used to love -- because it didn't smell fishy before!) and walking around the city was so hard because I could smell everything on the street.
It might sound funny, but drinking icy liquids from straws made me feel so much better! Daniel so sweetly (still) gets me drinks every night and he knows I always want a straw ;) It might not work for everyone, but if you're a new preggo, try drinking from straws and adding lots of ice in your drinks! It helped me curb the yucky feeling.
2. Yoga pants
These (and all tights or stretchy pants) are a must during these first weeks. You sometimes feel bloated, and I felt pretty much completely exhausted from week 8-14 -- like, totally sapped of all energy, and felt like I just needed to sleep a lot. Comfort is so important and you can style black or gray yoga pants or tights under cute tops, dresses, etc!
Just smelling lemon essential oils helped me so much during those weeks of nausea! We traveled to Texas for Thanksgiving and flying was especially hard -- that airplane air is nasty and I gagged the whole time. Thankfully I had this little bottle in my pocket and it saved me from throwing up on the plane!
I felt so good in my second trimester -- better than not pregnant! It was amazing and I am so grateful! I found the cutest, cheapest, and stretchiest dresses (just regular, not maternity) from Forever 21! They were so comfy and yet can be styled and worn simply or accessorized to be dressed-up!
My mom and dad bought me this book when I was 18 or 19 and dreaming of being a mom someday. But they kept it, waiting for the right time -- and gave it to me on my birthday this year and I lost it -- they had kept the book all these years and believed with me that I would someday be a mama. It meant so much! Reading it through this pregnancy has been the sweetest way to prepare my heart!
Women prefer all different pregnancy pillows, and some swear by just-plain pillows! But, I've loved the "Snoogle" -- and use it pretty much daily, even if it's not all night long -- at least for some of the night. It helps so much when your bump gets bigger and you're sleeping on your left side mostly. I recommend it!
Taking warm baths has been my lifesaver this third trimester! I get so achy and my back and legs (and pretty much everything haha) ache at the end of the day. It helps me relax so much to take a nice bath, light candles, listen to soft worship music, and diffuse some lavender essential oils. I love this one from Honest Co.!
What are your favorite things, mamas?
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