Just Found Out Your Pregnant? Below Is A Guide To EVERYTHING You Should Know!
So you’ve just peed on a stick and found out that you’re pregnant – whether your baby was planned or a total surprise, the chances are that you are in a state of shock. Even when you are trying for a baby, finding out that you are, in fact, pregnant can be a total shock and is news that can take some time to set in.
Of course, a big part of the shock that comes with finding out that you’re pregnant is coming to the realization that in nine month’s time, you will have a baby to care for. That’s a big change to adapt to and one that will have a huge impact on your life. The good news is that you’ve got nine months to prepare yourself for motherhood and everything that comes with it, so there’s no need to panic.
To help make the process of adapting to being pregnant and having a baby easier, it’s important that you are clued up about what’s going to happen, and how you can prepare for everything. So with that in mind, below is a guide to everything that you should know about having your first baby. (To make it easier and less overwhelming, the guide has been split into three parts.)
For during your pregnancy:
Take every day as it comes
There is a lot to learn when you first find out that you are pregnant. There’s doctor’s appointments to schedule, special vitamins to take, and various books to purchase and read, not to mention morning sickness to deal with. That fact is that those first few weeks of pregnancy can be totally overwhelming, as carrying a tiny human inside of you is a huge adjustment.
The most important thing that you can do to make your pregnancy easier for yourself is to take every day as it comes. Try not to panic and stress about every little thing, instead stay calm and just take things as they come. Those first few weeks are always nerve-wracking because, until 12 weeks, the risk of miscarriage is much higher than later in pregnancy, so on top of everything else that you’re panicking about, there’s that to worry about. The truth is that if you obsess over every little thing that could go wrong, you will drive yourself mad. That’s why it’s best just to take things one step at a time.
Look after yourself
One of the most important things that you can do during your pregnancy is look after yourself. When you’re pregnant, your body is under more stress than ever before, which means that naturally, you will be more tired and more stressed out. You don’t need to add any additional stress and make things worse for yourself, which is why it’s important to take things slowly and take care of yourself.
That being said, just because you need to take things slowly, that shouldn’t mean cutting out all exercise altogether. If you want to reduce your risk of developing gestational diabetes, it’s important to stay as active as possible while you’re pregnant. The best thing that you can do is look for specialist workouts that are specifically tailored to pregnant women, such as what the Moms Into Fitness site offers. As that way, you know that you are exercising in a way that’s safe for you and the baby. What doctors normally recommend is that it’s perfectly safe to do the same amount of exercise that you were doing before you got pregnant, but not to push yourself any further.
Part of taking care of yourself is not being afraid to have a good old pamper. If you’re feeling tired or stressed out, don’t be afraid to take some time out for a much needed pamper. Whether it’s a pregnancy massage, a relaxing bubble bath, or an evening watching all your favorite movies, it doesn’t matter, all that matters is that you take some time out for yourself so that you can relax and unwind.
Buy what you need
If there’s one thing that you don’t want to happen when you have a baby, it’s to not have everything that you need. Of course, there are basic items that everyone knows are vital, such as a cot, bottles, diapers, toys, and baby clothes, but what else will you new addition need? This depends on what you – as a mother – prefer and want for your little one. If you’re not sure, don’t panic – that’s what baby books (and baby blogs) are for – purchase a notebook and use it to write down anything baby related, from items that you should invest in, to tips about caring for your baby. Then you can refer back to it as and when you need to do so.
Have a baby shower
A great way to save money – babies are seriously expensive – is to have a baby shower. Ask a friend or sister to organize one for you and put together a registry of everything that you want/need for your baby. That way, you will get a huge chunk of the stuff that you need, and won’t have to pay for it. Anyone whose baby shower you’ve attended over the years, or would attend in the future, invite along. Obviously, it’s important to ensure that you register for gifts in various price ranges, so that no one feels compelled to spend more money than they are comfortable with. To ensure that your registry contains everything that you need it to, ask a friend who already has children to help you make the list. That way you shouldn’t miss out anything important.
For the labor:
Pack your hospital bag weeks in advance
If there’s one thing that you must do in the lead up to your labor, it’s packing your hospital bag in advance. The last thing that you want is to leave it until the last minute, having to pack it while in a rush to get to the hospital. That’s how you’ll end up forgetting to pack something important, which is why packing your hospital bag in advance is so important. If you’re not sure what to pack, your midwife should provide you with a list of items that are must-haves. You can also find useful hospital bag packing lists online, as well as on blogs and vlogs. It’s well worth taking the time to read up and see what other mommas would recommend. You can also ask on Facebook parenting groups as well, to see what other local mommas would recommend packing into your hospital bag.
Pack pain relief
While the hospital will provide most of your pain relief, if there’s any pain relief that you want to use, such as a Tens Machine, that your hospital unit doesn’t provide, it’s important to ensure that you have this ready to go for when labor arrives. If you plan on using natural pain relief methods, such as meditation, for instance, it’s also essential that you have everything that you need for this, such as the right music.
Take plenty of snacks and entertainment
Labor can go on for quite a while, which is why it’s a good idea to pack plenty of snacks and entertainment so that you don’t end up bored. Easy to eat snacks that don’t require refrigerating are important to have, such as sweets, crisps, and fruit. It could also be worth bringing some of your favorite drinks along. As for entertainment, packing some books, magazines, and a tablet and headphones could be a good idea. Just make sure to download some programs before you head off to the hospital, in case there is no internet access available.
Don’t forget the camera
If there’s one thing that you don’t want to forget for your baby’s birth, it’s a camera. The moment that your little one enters the world is one of the most amazing moments of your life, and so, you will most probably want to capture their first few moments on camera. If you plan on using your phone as a camera, make sure to pack a charger in case its battery dies. The same goes for if you’re packing a camera – packing a charger and perhaps an extra memory card is a must.
For after you give birth:
Understand that it will get easier
Those first few weeks of parenthood, while amazing, can also be incredibly stressful and a lot of hard work, especially if your child doesn’t sleep regularly and is a somewhat fussy baby. The most important thing to remember is that it will get easier, and it will never be as hard as it is now again. If you find yourself struggling to cope, don’t be afraid to ask for help. That’s what family and friends are there for – to help you through the hardest parts of your life.
Take lots of photos
You won’t realize it until it happens but babies grow incredibly fast, so if you want to catch them in all their newborn glory, it’s important that you take lots of photos from the moment that they come home. What you can also do is choose to hire a professional photographer to come and take some photos of your new addition, and you, your partner and your new addition. Amateur photos are great, but sometimes it’s nice to get some professional photos as well.
Raising a mini human isn’t always an easy task, but it’s crucial that you enjoy it, as those early weeks and months will fly by. It may not seem like it at times, but the fact is that parenthood really does go by in a flash, so it’s important to enjoy every minute of it.
There you have it, a guide to everything that you should know when it comes to having your first baby.