So I’m in the homestretch of this pregnancy. At the end of March, my son, Westley will have his “B.” That’s his nickname for my belly/little sister, Baby Girl Finch. I’m so excited. I’m also reflecting on lessons learned from my first pregnancy. After thinking about several things to do differently in my last 30 days of pregnancy, I thought I’d share them with other mamas-to-be who are in the same boat. So below are 6 lessons I learned from my first pregnancy that have greatly improved this one. Hopefully, they’ll do the same for you.
Harness The Torpedo Belly
Like my last pregnancy, this little one is growing quickly and my belly is getting H-E-A-V-Y. With Baby Girl Finch moving into position for delivery, I am in a bit of pain and it is making me a wee bit cranky. Plus, I feel bad for my Westley because he can’t even sit on my lap anymore. (Our story time kind of looks like a page from The Berenstain Bears New Baby.)
Lesson Learned #1: Invest in an Upsie Belly
Belly Bandit makes this amazing supportive band called the Upsie Belly to help with this particular pain. It is amazing and I WISH I had it for my last pregnancy.
Its primary purpose is to give relief for your back and other aches and pains by providing necessary lift and support. When I wear it, I seriously feel like someone is cradling me and my little girl. Now, it’s a little pricey for 30 days (retails at $69.95), so try to score it on sale beforehand. That’s what I did via Target. I only have two warnings about it: #1 Watch the velcro closure. Sometimes I snag my clothing when I put it on which is really annoying and #2 Don’t put it on too tight. I think when it’s too tight, it irritates my little girl cause she’s starts kicking and pushing. (Clearly, she already thinks she’s the boss.) Bonus: It also comes with a hot/cold pack to sooth the pain which is AWESOME!
Tame Your Inner Fire-Breathing Dragon
Sister like brother. Like Westley, every time I go to bed, Baby Girl Finch does something to turn me into what feels like a fire breathing dragon. The fact is as your little one grows, there simply is less space in your belly so heartburn is going to happen. And in the last 30 days, that little bundle of joy is growing quickly; so that heartburn is roaring.
Lesson Learned #2: Get Some Earth Mama Angel Baby Organics Heartburn Tea
Earth Mama Angel Baby Organics Heartburn Tea is a lifesaver. If you’re like me and the heartburn is REAL, and you’re trying to avoid all unnecessary medications, then this tea is for you.
Honestly, I have a cup right after dinner and I’ve noticed my middle of the night heartburn has died down. I highly recommend investing in this, even before the last 30 days. Just make sure you check with your doctor before using it. Then sit back and find some relief with a warm cup of tea.
Keep Calm And Vacation On
We found out 3 months after our honeymoon that we were pregnant with Westley; so the idea of a babymoon at the time didn’t make sense financially. We just spent a nice chunk of change on going to Mexico, not crazy money, but enough. We figured with a new baby coming, we should save our coins for his expenses.
Lesson Learned #3: Go Somewhere…Anywhere
We really should have gone on a vacay locally or even planned a fun staycation. Instead, we pretty much just worked and prepared up until the day Westley was due. It didn’t help that somebody was 11 days late; so we never really got a break. This time around we’re dedicating an entire weekend to a local staycation with just my husband, Westley and myself. (Technically baby Girl Finch will be there, but you get what I’m saying.) We’re going to do a few Westley-focused things to celebrate his last days as an only child.
Being that I was dethroned I know what he’s about to go through; so I think it is worth carving out this special time for him and my family. Whether you already have kids or not, take time to enjoy the final few days of the family you have because it’s going to change quickly.
When You Look Good, You Feel Great
When I was pregnant with Westley, I was so concerned about making sure I had everything ready for his arrival that I forgot about preparing myself so I felt great during delivery. This is going to sound ridiculous, but when I got to the hospital for my induction, I was more embarrassed by the doctors seeing my toes that were in desperate need of a pedicure than I was for them to see my lady parts during labor.
Lesson Learned #4: Have A Pamper Me Day
Take some time to to take care of yourself before you deliver.
This isn’t vanity speaking, this is reminding you that you deserve some me-time because it goes out the window very quickly after your little one gets here. I will say, you can’t alway predict when you’re going to deliver, but you can make sure the basics are covered as close to your due date as possible.
Prep The Ta-Tas
We knew the plan was to breastfeed Westley from jump. I seriously did all of the reading about latching and even preemptively saw a breastfeeding consultant. What I didn’t do what have a breastfeeding kit ready and waiting for me when I got home. I had all of the pieces, but some items were in the nursery, some were in the kitchen, some were…I don’t even remember.
Lesson Learned #5: Make A Breastfeeding Basket
What I learned was, have everything, and I MEAN EVERYTHING, that you could possibly need when it comes to breastfeeding in one place.
So when you need your husband to get your nipple cream because your new little bundle of joy has just stared to wreak havoc on your body, you won’t need to send him on a wild goose chase. Just have everything nursing related together. This time around, I have all of the following together in a basket:
- The Honest Co. Honest Organic Nipple Balm
- Medela Breast Pump (Side note: Check with your insurance company to see if you’re eligible for a free pump. Mine did which was awesome. You can also lease them from some major baby product retailers if you don’t want to purchase one.)
- Nursing Bras
- Nursing covers
- Reminder bands or Phone App to document which side you nursed on last
- Milk Storage Bags
- Pump Attachments
Be Prepared…Have A Living Will
So I know this isn’t the most fun thing to think about in your last 30 days, but I’m a realist. Because I was a few months shy of 21 when my mother passed away, preparing for the worst is always top of mind of mind when it comes to family. However, I didn’t think about updating my living will before I gave birth. I had a plan, to deliver naturally and be home in a few days. What really happened was 32 hours of labor and delivery via emergency c-section.
Lesson Learned #6: Plan For Even The Scariest Situations
Nobody likes to talk about this type of preparation when it comes to growing a family because it isn’t fun and fuzzy-feeling like baby showers and nursery decor. Yet, it is still a reality because you never know what will happen when delivery time hits. I didn’t. I never considered what would happen if something went awry, like needing an emergency c-section or worse.
This time around I look at it like this, if I can take the time for 9 months to protect my little one by eating right, cutting coffee, and not doing dangerous things, then it should be a no-brainer to protect her in the future in case something happens during delivery. So I recommend going to LegalZoom.com or another reputable site, downloading a template of a Living Will and completing it if you don’t have one already.
Enjoy Your Last 30 Days of Pregnancy
Well that’s it. I hope my 6 Lessons Learned on the last 30 days of pregnancy will cut down on possible missteps you may take as you get ready to grow your family. Let me know if there are things you learned that you are or are not doing your second time around. And remember, nobody is perfect. We’re all going to make mistakes whether we’re first, second or third-time moms. The goal is to do our best for our kids by being the best moms we can be. Now go sit back and enjoy your last 30 days!