Dear Pregnant One,
Whatever trimester you are currently rocking my advice to you is dispensed below...
Be kind to your body. As women I know we carry a lot of messed up, mixed thoughts about our wonderful bodies. We worry what they look like and feel like. We spare little thought for developing our own appreciation for this vessel.
If you are Pregnant, you will be aware that your body is going to change. If you are anything like me it will creep up on you and scare you to death when you casually walk past a full length mirror, on your way for your 5th wee of the night.
You will wait for that bump. You will stand by a mirror seeking it. One day, you wake up and you are a pregnant woman. Some days this is great, other day's particularly warm ones, you will long for your old body, the one that could fit into summer clothing because you've limited your maternity wear to 2 dresses and 2 pairs of skinny jeans. Bad move.
You may get stretch marks, you may not. This is the human version of buying a lucky dip ticket on a friday night. My mother has none. I had them before I was pregnant. Life is unfair. You just have to roll with it and keep slathering on the cream.
You will get spots, they will go. You will develop a lot of hair that wasn't around before and at some point you won't be able to get yourself into the required positions to deal with such things. You will swell so much that at times your hands may look like a packet of Richmond sausages.
Some days you will feel that Pregnancy glow. Most day's you won't. I suggest finding some women who have already given birth and sharing such symptoms and thoughts with them. Trust me, someone will always one up you and you will again feel human.
Be kind to your significant other (don't come at me with a pitch fork) I can't believe I'm writing this one but the sensible, thoughtful part of me knows it must be said.
If you have a male partner there is a good chance he will not understand what the hell you are going through. Some will try and others won't. Pregnancy will start to test your relationship for the craziness that you are about to go through as parents. You will probably feel like you have hooked up with the most selfish, useless male put on this earth. You haven't.
I have had conversations with my other half where I discuss my swollen Richmond-like extremities, my utter exhaustion and inability to carry out day to day tasks. He has taken all this in, nodded and asked me if I want to walk up the shops and get him some cola and some cheese slices! This is a true story.
This man will never have his bladder beaten by tiny feet. He cannot comprehend how tiring, stressful and strenuous being Pregnant can be. Some days you will want to kill him, you will find it hard to communicate with him. Ultimately he's just as scared as you are, maybe even more so as he's completely in the dark. He won't know what to say, he will struggle to empathise and let's face it, some days he will try and it will probably wind you up even more.
Now, if your partner is a woman - Lucky you ;)
Last and by no means least, Try and be kind to you.
You may not have realised it but you have a short space of time to attempt to get your head round what is about to happen. I don't think I've managed it yet but you will spend most of your time trying.
Go away somewhere just because you deserve the break, even if you think a 'baby moon' is a nonsense made up word. Treat yourself, it may be the last time for a while.
Stop giving yourself a mental kicking because of your inability to eat well. You will eat what you want, when you want and you have your whole life to sort that stuff out. I've survived for days on end with an overwhelming desire for ginger beer and fresh cream. It happens.
Do not spend time worrying what your birth will be like but be informed of your choices. Try not to think about your lady parts or listen to too many mothers talk about theirs. It doesn't help you.
Enjoy it. it is short - even if you feel like it's a life sentence.
I'll let you into a little secret, none of us know what we are doing.
Slow down. Relish small moments. Do not, I repeat, do not beat yourself up because you have been acting like a crazy woman. We all do.
And remember, Please, Please be Kind.
This post was delivered by the beautiful Ceri at Life With Bumps. She is due to deliver something else shortly so why not hop over and send her some love.
If you've recently received your own special bundle and you fancy some tips for a stressless maternity leave please register for my free online seminar 'The Lost Art of Stay at Home Parenting' Going live on Monday 3rd August @ 7:30pm.