FAQ: First Trimester

I’ve been putting off writing this post for a few weeks-I don’t know why…maybe because it takes more time than posting an outfit? Maybe because I don’t want to admit that time is just going and going, and with each day I am getting closer to being a Mom of 3? (I know, I still have a loooong way to go but do I really??!?!)

I took to instagram to see what questions you had about my first trimester-a lot of similarities in what you all were asking so I just pulled the ones that were generally asked the most!

Photo by Brady Pappas

First sign that you felt you were pregnant/ How did you find out you were pregnant

I don’t feel like there were many overwhelming signs that I thought I was pregnant. We had basically been trying since last summer, so each month I was trying to look or ‘feel’ for signs that I was expecting. I am a really impatient person (I thought that would change when I became a parent-spoiler alert-it didn’t.) With all of my pregnancies I could never wait until I missed my period to take a test. I was always at the store 5 or so days before I was to get my period (I am a pretty regular) to purchase the “find out 5 days before your missed period!” pregnancy tests.

I’ve been blessed with pretty great skin my whole life, so the fact that I kept getting big zits felt off to me. Not just a little pimple here and there-one giant zit after another. I was getting frustrated, and one day I felt the nudge to Google if acne was a sign of pregnancy-sure enough, it can be. Soooo it was a Saturday, what I thought was withing a few days of my upcoming period so I stopped to get a test on my way home from work-being the impatient gal I am, I took one right when I get home and it was negative. Only later, I realized that I was about a week out from my period so I took it a little prematurely.

I waited a few more days (again because I’m impatient lol) and took one first thing in the morning (which is recommended-not to be gross but your pee is the most potent the first time you go in the am). Anticipating another negative, I set it down on my night stand and was shocked when I saw it said “pregnant.” I was literally in the middle of saying to myself “Let me guess, not preg…..nant. Oh *%$*.” LOL!

I was leaving later that day for a press trip, and wasn’t going to be home until the following night around midnight, so I didn’t get a chance to tell Ryan until I was home-I wanted to be able to tell him in person!

Does this pregnancy feel diff than others?

Yes. 100% yes. It’s so weird how your body is doing essentially the same thing every time you are pregnant, but each time is so different. Some things I can’t explain, it’s just weird feelings, but this one is so different than with Ella and Charlotte.

The biggest difference that is easy to explain is feeling off. I haven’t thrown up, or felt nauseous, but I have the feeling of being hungover. I didn’t feel this at all with my other two. I was just tired! This time around not only am I tired but I have that hungover feeling-tired, feeling gross, no appetite and just overall blah. And all day, too-this wasn’t/isn’t just a morning thing, unfortunately.

It has subsided a bit over the last few weeks but it still lingers here and there. I’ll be hungry, but then I go to eat and I’m like EWWWW FOOD. But I know I need to eat, but I don’t want to because it seems so gross to me.

Photo by Ken Bruggeman

Morning sickness? How did you deal?

Like I said before, it wasn’t/isn’t so much morning, it’s kind of all day. Still sort of a thing, but not as frequent as previously which has provided a little bit of relief, and I do feel like I am able to eat more.

Here are some ways I dealt/deal with it:

Peppermint essential oil: I dab it on my temples and in my belly button (it’s not suggest to ingest) and it provides a little welcomed relief. I strictly use Young Living Essential Oils. I highly recommend Young Living-I am sure there are other great brands out there, I would just double check before using them that they are safe for pregnancy.

Preggie PopsI started sucking on these at the recommendation of a friend. I just grabbed them at Target but I believe they are available elsewhere.

Jolly Ranchers: I was shocked at how many of you recommended these for morning sickness! Lucky for me, we had a ton of them at home from our trip to Hershey’s Chocolate World a few weeks prior so I stashed a bunch in my purse to reach for throughout the day. I think they definitely helped!

Coca Cola: Good old fashioned Coca Cola has been a big help. I tried Coke syrup for the first time when I was in high school-my boyfriend’s mom gave me some when I was sick and it helped tremendously. I know Coke isn’t the best in general because of caffeine and all that’s in it, but desperate times, people. I like to leave the lid open and let it go a little flat while sipping on it. I have found that it settles my uneasiness more than Ginger Ale and Sprite.

Fresh Air: Lucky for me during the worst of my blah feelings, the air was crisp here-not super warm yet, still a tiny touch of winter lingering with spring. No matter how crappy I felt, fresh air felt so good to me. It’s weird, but it felt extra fresh and crisp (maybe because my senses are heightened?!), which is a weird feeling and weird to try to explain-LOL. But for some reason, I craved fresh air, and it helped a little bit.

Other suggestions people gave but I didn’t try: charcoal tablets, seasickness bands, anything ginger.

About 24 weeks pregnant with Ella-26 and felt so old-HA!

Do you feel it is harder so far in your 30’s rather than 20’s?

YES. 100% yes. The one day I mentioned to Ryan how exhausted I was, so much more than my pregnancies with Ella and Charlotte and I didn’t know why. He was quick to remind me-“you’re 37. You were 26 when you were pregnant with Ella and 30 when you were pregnant with Charlotte.” Oh yeah, right. DUH.

I know 37 is not old, and I don’t feel old, but man does it make a difference for this pregnancy. I also feel like the fact that I have two children to care for and essentially two full time jobs (my store and this blog) this time around make it a little bit different.

Not only was I 26 when I was pregnant with Ella but I also didn’t have any other children-I could nap and rest when I wanted.

I was about 20 weeks with Charlotte here-Ella was so tiny!

How do you deal with fatigue with having to work and parent 2 children?

It’s definitely hard (pregnant or not lol) but Ryan is incredibly supportive and has always been. Our marriage is absolutely 50/50. We pick up each other’s slack as needed. But also, being that Ella and Charlotte are 11 and 6, they can be self sufficient when needed. It’s not a burden or more work for Ryan when I want to take a breather.

I remember one afternoon (before we told the girls I was pregnant) I was feeling particularly awful-I told the girls I needed to rest for a little because I was tired. Ella chimed in “you’ve been tired a lot lately!” LOL-yes, if you only knew, Ella! But, they went and played together for a little bit while I rested. Although I would have loved for everyone to be closer in age, the fact that they are older has been a blessing as far as me getting rest.

Have you avoided caffeine?

I have lessened my intake but I haven’t avoided it altogether (hello, Coca Cola!). Caffeine doesn’t affect me generally, as far as needing it to wake me up or anything, so it’s nothing that I feel like I need or crave or has even been hard for met to avoid.

Weight wise-are you considered high risk?

According to the BMI chart, I am considered obese (like what?!?!)-crazy, because I don’t feel obese at all.  My doctor didn’t say anything at my first appointment (which I was terrified about), so I am guessing they aren’t too worried about it. Had it been an issue I would think they would make it a point to say something.

When they were going over my pregnancy as a whole they did mention that my weight gain should be between 15-25 lbs which is less than what I was told with Ella and Charlotte-I am assuming because my starting weight this time around is basically what my weight was at the end of both pregnancies before. As of my last appointment I had lost 2 lbs-I wasn’t surprised since it was hard for me to eat. Although I wasn’t surprised it was weird to me-being told throughout both of my other pregnancies to slow down my weight gain I went in with the mindset that they would tell me that.

I have to say I am really nervous for my appointment next week. I typically do blind weighs, because knowing my weight is a negative trigger for me, but I am really worried they’ll tell me I gained too much. I’m working really hard to be as healthy as possible, to find a good balance between treating myself and eating for two and just having a good, positive mentality.

It’s hard for sure, but at the end of the day I just want a healthy baby!

How did you hide your bump so well?

Hahaha! A lot of strategic standing and posing! It was getting a little harder closer to when I announced-I started showing sooner since it was my third so some days were more challenging than others.

There were definitely some outfits where if I turned to the side you could totally tell, so I just made sure in my try ons to just stay forward facing!

35 weeks with Charlotte and I hated the way I looked. Looking at it now I think I look great!

When do sore breasts go away?

For me? Never. That is one thing that is similar with all three of my pregnancies. They hurt all the time and throughout the whole pregnancy. That was actually one of the reasons I thought I might be pregnant with Ella-they hurt so bad, like more than normal when I would get my period. I distinctly remember Ryan driving over a pot hole and getting so irritated because of how bad they hurt-hahaha!

I honestly think it’s different for everyone, like most things when it comes to pregnancies. Hopefully for you all it goes away at some point and you get some relief. For me? I’ll be over here avoiding all of the pot holes and speed bumps on the road!

How did the girls take the news?

They were thrilled! I have the video of us telling them saved to my instagram highlights. They were thrilled! When we told them it was a girl they were a little bit bummed (which I was surprised they both wanted a baby brother). But their mindset quickly adjusted and they are super excited for a baby sister!

Gender and possible names?

I had bloodwork done at ten weeks that tested for any issues we should be aware of, and we had the opportunity to find out the baby’s gender. We chose to find out-like I said before…impatient! Plus we just like to be able to plan accordingly. We are super excited to have another little girl!

As far as names go, we have the middle name locked, and have it narrowed down to I would say around five with three that are our top choices. We are on the fence as to whether or not we are going to share the name before she arrives-we did with Ella and Charlotte, but part of us kind of wants to keep it to ourselves. We have chatted names with some close friends and family, though so who knows if we will be able to keep it a secret!

Go-to products for first trimester

Honestly, there wasn’t much more than what I listed with dealing with my morning sickness.

I did start snoring over the last several months (and there are videos to prove it, sadly lol), so I would add nose strips to the list.

Obviously a pre natal vitamin is important not just during the first trimester but throughout the whole pregnancy. I just take Target’s brand of gummy vitamins-they’re like a little treat to me!

How long did you wait to tell extended family/how did you tell them?

We knew for almost two months before we told our family. This is the type of news that we wanted to be able to tell them in person. No one knew that a third child was in our plans so it was a huge deal to be able to share in person. When it came to my family, it wasn’t a matter of waiting until I reach a ‘safe’ point in the pregnancy-if something terrible were to happen, I personally would want the support of my close family, so I wasn’t concerned about that. (I know it’s different for everyone)

We were having just our close family over for Ella’s birthday at the beginning of April, so while it was really hard to keep it a secret from our family for several weeks (I even went home for a family bridal shower so that made it even harder), it was worth it to be able to tell them in person.

My Dad’s birthday was about a week after Ella’s so we decided to give him his birthday present-a framed picture of the first ultrasound-that day. It worked out perfectly because it was just my parents, Ryan’s parents and my brother (we were only missing Ryan’s brother and his family).

Needless to say they were SHOCKED. I would even say that’s putting it lightly! My only regret is that we didn’t get a picture of Ryan’s parents reaction! I think they were slow to react because it had to sink in-LOL!

Planned or unplanned?

Planned! That is one of the most questions I get from people (how far along are you? do you know what you’re having? how are you feeling? was this a surprise?). I sort of get it-Charlotte is 6.5. That’s a pretty big age gap so I understand the thought that it is unplanned or a surprise. Also like I said before, we didn’t really tell anyone that we were trying for a third so there was a lot of initial “wait what?!?” when we told people!

I shared in this blog post our thoughts on having a third child, and how we ended up here. I go into a little more detail there! But short version-having our girls closer in age would be cool but this was God’s plan for us and for that I am so incredibly thankful.

Ways to be supportive/helpful for someone who is pregnant?

I don’t know why I loved this question so much, but I did. I think it’s the fact that it’s even a worry or concern for someone speaks volumes.

There are so many ways to be supportive and helpful for someone who is pregnant. Simply asking how they’re doing/feeling is a good start.

A simple-“you look so great!” will do as well. I think it’s important to steer clear of commenting on their size

“omg your belly is so big!”
“omg you’re so tiny!”
“wow you’re all belly!”

You never know how a comment like that, even if it’s well meaning, will be taken. Our bodies change so much during pregnancy, sometimes at such a fast pace that it’s hard to keep up with mentally!

Offer help-getting things ready for the nursery, if she already has kids, maybe offer to watch them so she can rest (growing a human is hard!).

Overall, just being there, checking in periodically and offering your friendship and help! It’s such an emotional, hormonal time so support is always welcomed!

 

 

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