Buy cheap pregnancy tests and other things I learned during the first trimester of my pregnancy.

OK, I promise I will not be doing pregnancy posts every week, but I wanted to do one more first trimester post because the first trimester is such a stressful and confusing time and if this post just helps one person, I shall be very satisfied!

Nevermind the fact that I’ve been out of the first trimester for like 6 weeks… Gulp. Time flies.

I guess this is what I get for not telling anyone I was pregnant until I was already in the second trimester… a bunch of really late first trimester posts!

Bear with me on this. I’ll be all caught up after this one.

In case you wanted to know what the inside of my uterus looks like. This was Baby B. at 8 weeks. We called him Spiderman because he was hanging by his little soon-to-be-feet.

// Using pregnancy boards as a source for any information is not a good idea. Basically, do not read pregnancy boards! Or articles. Or even most books. Or really anything at all. Just talk to your doctor (or midwife!) and listen to what they say and do not rely on extra materials (the internet) which will only serve to stress you out.

// There is a whole level of fatigue I never knew about before and it is quite… exhausting!

// Congestion is a side effect of pregnancy… who knew?! 

// Keeping pregnancy a secret isn’t really as hard as I thought it would be, but it’s not exactly fun either! It’s probably best to tell a few close friends (preferably those who have already been pregnant or are pregnant or want to get pregnant) within the first few weeks, and then wait until closer to the second trimester to tell everyone else.

// Pregnancy is freakin’ stressful! I don’t know why I thought the most stressful part of having a baby would be getting pregnant, but clearly I was waaaaaaay off. The most stressful thing about pregnancy (so far, at least) is the first trimester! Every day I Googled symptoms I was having or wasn’t having and I convinced myself multiple times that I wasn’t pregnant anymore. I was basically a totally crazy person, but I’m convinced this is completely normal! Just embrace the crazy and try to remain optimistic and positive and know that it’s all out of your control anyway. (But even though I give this advice, I probably will never be able to take it myself.)

// Speaking of stress, what makes pregnancy even more stressful is knowing about it too soon. If I could go back in time, I wouldn’t pee on a stick for at least four days after my period was late. As it was, I decided to pee on a stick a day before my period was even late, so we found out very early, at about four weeks. And then, of course, I turned to Google to find out everything I needed to know about four weeks of pregnancy. And article after article came up about the likelihood of early miscarriage that looks like a late period (which happens very frequently, but most women don’t identify as pregnancy / a miscarriage). Just trust me on this, wait to pee on the darn stick.

// Cheap-o pregnancy tests work just as well as the expensive tests. First I used a cheap pregnancy test (positive) but it was my first time ever using one so I took another one a few hours later (positive, again) and then I went to Walgreens and paid $25 for an early detection pregnancy test and what do you think the result was? Another positive, of course. Go for the cheap tests, they’re accurate.

// Pregnant women do not (generally) look pregnant for quite some time. I know this varies from woman to woman, but my doctor told me that since this is my first pregnancy, I may not even be showing much by 20 weeks! And, I guess skinny women even tend to show even later than normal because stronger ab muscles will keep that baby/uterus from pushing out of the abdomen. Or something like that. I’m not great with medical terms.

// And as soon as you tell people you are pregnant, they will glance at your belly. Now I know how women with big boobs feel! Eye contact people, eye contact… nothing to see there.

// Speaking of boobs, they will grow and it’s actually kind of fun! In the first trimester my stomach was (mostly) flat, my boobs were big, and I felt pretty freakin’ attractive, especially once I got the energy to take a shower and put on makeup and things like that.

// All babies look the same on ultrasounds, but there is absolutely nothing as amazing as seeing your own baby on that screen. This is especially true the first time you see that tiny flicker of a heartbeat on the monitor. It’s like experiencing a tiny miracle and it’s hard to believe that it’s going on right inside your abdomen!

// There are some superhero pregnant ladies who can workout and eat well and do all of the things that a woman is ‘supposed’ to do while pregnant. It turns out I’m not one of those women. For about 6 weeks I could barely move from the couch, much less eat anything more than saltines. The gym? HA! Basically, my doctor said that it doesn’t really matter what I eat, because the baby will take what it needs from my body. The only thing is, if I’m not getting enough vitamins/calcium/etc. than my body will suffer from the lack of nutrients – but the baby will be fine (obviously, I’m not referring to extreme cases).

// Not all pregnant women have food cravings or food aversions. They also don’t act hormonal all of the time. Symptoms start and end at different times for different women. Not all women get morning sickness or all/any of the unpleasant (but common) pregnancy symptoms. I know this seems obvious, but I used to think that all women had the basic symptoms!

// Symptoms come and go and that is completely normal. Some days I felt super pregnant (sick), while other days I felt 100% ‘normal’. Enjoy the normal days!

// Morning sickness doesn’t necessarily mean puking. Personally, I didn’t even vomit once from pregnancy (OK, I did puke just once)! I thought for sure I’d be a puking 80 times a day (because I generally have a very sensitive stomach) but I guess the pregnancy gods have smiled on me! Actually, my doctor said that the way your body handles birth control pills (and changing pills and going off the pill) can be a good indicator of how your body will handle pregnancy.

// Once we told friends that we were pregnant, the most commonly asked question (we got) was “was it an accident or were you trying?” which is kind of an awkward question! I mean, ‘technically’ we were trying because we were temping and planning on ‘officially’ trying in 2014, but God had different plans for us and we got pregnant a little sooner than anticipated! Just make sure you have an answer to that question, as you will probably be hearing it more than you would like.

I think the most important lesson I learned is that the first trimester sucks, but it does go by quickly! So if you’re currently in the first trimester, don’t worry – it will be over soon! And if you aren’t pregnant yet but are trying or may try one day… the first trimester is really not as bad as you might think. Or it could be worse. But hopefully not.


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