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10 things I learnt during my pregnancy

Pregnancy was an interesting but daunting experience for me, so many amazing moments teamed with anxiety and nausea. While I didn't quite make it the full 40 weeks, I was really surprised just how much I learnt about myself and my body and what it really takes to bring a new life into the world.

Here's 10 things I learnt during my pregnancy.....

1. Never underestimate just how tired you will feel, particularly in the 1st and 3rd trimesters, I know people say you will feel it but boy was I unprepared. For the first couple of months I slept non stop, if I wasn't at work I was curled up in my pj's napping and going to bed around 8.30 because I just couldn't function - it was such a relief to hit week 16 and feel awake, actually be able to have an adult conversation without yawning. And while the third trimester is also tiring, it is a different kind of tired, because baby is fully formed and just growing - my advice, give in, grab your pj's and sleep as much as you can.

2. Simple tasks become horrendously hard and so uncomfortable. Washing my face, walking upstairs (why we bought a house with 2 flights of stairs I don't know), rolling over in bed, standing up from the loo or even getting dressed - everything takes longer and is such effort. Having a relaxing bubble bath became a two person mission, getting in was ok but once in, I morphed into this beached whale and getting out was almost impossible so by 32 weeks, baths were not an option - annoying as I had just stocked up on my favourite bubble bars from Lush. This was a part of pregnancy I found hard, as it left me feeling helpless - I am an independent woman and having to have someone tie your shoes because you can't reach anymore is hard to get your head around - excepting help is a big part of pregnancy. 

3. Midwife appointments are not that exciting, especially if all is well with the baby. Each session consisted of a urine check, blood pressure and then later on measuring of the bump and listening to baby's heartbeat (which was my favourite part) but that's it. Took me a while to accept that the NHS wasn't gonna hold my hand through this experience, which after a miscarriage a few years ago was a big thing for me - I went in anticipating lots of appointments and advice but actually your just left to get on with it!

4. Being organised isn't a bad thing - having the nursery set up, pram/car seat un-boxed, hospital bags packed, clothes washed etc is a weight off your mind, especially if baby decides to do what Mark did and arrive 5 weeks early. The idea of heading into hospital or coming home without all of these little things done, would have stressed me out, plus sitting in the nursery surrounded by all his little belongings was very calming for me.

5. Loss of control over your body - constant burbs, farts, indigestion (which I have never suffered from before), hot sweats, body parts expands including your toes, stretch marks, unannounced waves of sickness and weird changes in your food tastes are just some of the delights that my body put me through. I only had one very boring craving during my pregnancy, which was wheatbix with sultanas and a banana (and 2 random days of walnut whips) but I also went right off spaghetti which is one my favourite meals but glad to say only a temporary aversion.

6. Baby movements are an amazing feeling however they can be super annoying especially when you have just got comfy and are about to drop off to sleep but the sensation of feeling life inside of me was the best antidote to the months of nausea and tiredness. Not always kicks, mine felt like a Mexican wave rolling across my belly and towards the end Mark definitely had hiccups and continues to do so almost everyday. 

7. Babies don't always co-operate, Mark was such an awkward little bump. From fidgeting in his 12 week scan, resulting in blurred pictures and lying the wrong way up during his 20 week scan, where he was face down hugging my bladder and refusing to roll over, to kicking the dopler off my belly every time the midwife wanted to listen. Even in utero babies only do things when they want, so be prepared to get on their timetable.

8. Appreciating your other half - hubby put up with a lot of mood swings, helping me do mundane everyday tasks, multiple trips to the maternity assessment unit in the middle of the night and my obsessing about buying the right bits for baby but he did all with a smile and was my rock, keeping me calm when it all got too much.

9. You don't have to spend a fortune. I knew what we needed to buy, aiming for the best of everything but that gets so expensive and actually once we shopped around, I found so many great items for a fraction of the price - Aldi, BabiesRUs and Amazon are just as good for newborn essentials as Mamas & Papas. Also I cannot rave enough about Primark baby clothes - for newborns who just eat, sleep and poop, the vest/baby grow multi packs are amazing....cute colours & designs, great quality (so much better than their womenswear) and they wash well - we have had so many compliments on outfits.

10. Nothing prepares you for the overwhelming love combined with a huge wave of panic you feel when you leave the hospital with this little wrinkly human. Amazing feeling but also kinda scary - no amount of reading books, antenatal classes etc can prepare you for this but take a deep breath and enjoy as time goes so fast....Mark is three months old today!

* Please note, my post schedule will be a little irregular for the next few months, have to fit in blogging around little man which is harder than it sounds, so please bare with. Be sure to follow my social media for notifications on new posts x

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