Pregnancy Top 10 + Giveaway!

Jan 11, 2011 by

I made a little list, just for fun, of the top 10 things I wish someone told me (beforehand) about pregnancy.  Hopefully this list will make you laugh, and provide some helpful tips for anyone thinking about becoming a parent, or in the throes of pregnancy along with me!

10. What to Expect…When You’re Reading “What to Expect”
This book is known as the #1 Best-Selling baby book of all time.  I had some questions about it ahead of time because many of the things women today “just know” came from the “rules” in this book; things like not to use a hot tub while pregnant, not to use Advil, etc. 

What I didn’t know is that this book is really hit or miss.  Some women swear by it, couldn’t have lived without it…other (ME!) hated every second of the parts they did read, and didn’t bother to finish it because it’s a waste of time.

Reasons I hated it:
A) There is a disproportionately large portion of the beginnning of the book describing what to do if you are pregnant and addicted to cocaine, how to stop using, resources to help you accomplish that goal, etc.  Now, that is a serious problem (if you have it) but I’m going to venture a guess that most women who become pregnant are not, in fact, addicted to coke (unless you’re talking about the kind in a red can), and it would be much more helpful to have a large section discussing how to cut back on caffeine, sushi, coffee, anything else that an average woman might consume on a regular basis.  Quit wasting time with coke. 

B) I still have not figured out why this author is the #1 Best-Selling author of baby books.  She is not a doctor, nurse or involved in the medical profession in any way.  She does not have a degree of any kind in child/human studies/development.  WHY is she the utmost authority on pregnancy??  I don’t know about any of you, but it’s hard to take anything she says seriously.

C) All the “rules” I mentioned previously…they’re not all true.  Doctors have varying opinions on varying topics, so I tend to trust them (again, they have DEGREES, PRACTICE, and a hell of a lot of years of SCHOOLING) more than some random chick who’s had two kids and is suddenly an expert.

9. Morning Sickness: A Misnomer

I really believe the term “morning sickness” came about because it sounds cute…well, cuter than “Could be Any Time of Day and You May Just WISH You Were Sick.” 

See, a lot of people warned me that morning sickness could creep up on you at any time and that some lucky bitches…er…people don’t get it at all.  What I didn’t know is that you can have what is considered “morning sickness” but not throw up.  Before I was pregnant, I had this crazy thought that if I ended up with morning sickness once I was pregnant, it wouldn’t be a big deal because puking was my go-to strategy when I drank too much in college.  Vomit does not gross me out in any way.  So, naturally, I end up with the worst possible situation (for me, at least): spending the whole day nauseated and WISHING I could just throw up and get it over with, but unable to do so. Of course, this leads in to…

8. Battle of the Opposites

What I mean by this is that pretty much whatever goes on with your health in your regular life, you will have the opposite happen while pregnant.  For example, I had great skin (perhaps partially due to birth control) for most of my life.  Little acne here and there, nothing noteworthy.  Then I got pregnant.  BAM!  I turn into Zitzilla, Acne Queen of Goofy Ridge.  Only now I can’t do anything about it, because all the zit creams are against the “rules.”  Good thing I threw those rules out the window.  Example number 2 (pun intended): You’ve all heard about my digestive issues in the past.  Let’s just say I now have the opposite problem in a major way.  Prenatal vitamins block you up, being pregnant slows your digestion down, which has the same effect…suddenly I’m spending hours in the bathroom praying TO go instead of my usual “Dear God, make it stop!!!”  Not cool!

There has been one exception that I’m not sure how I feel about just yet: my fat gut.  Now before you all write comments about how I should be proud of my body and not worry about how I look, just calm down and let me explain.  Pregnant people get fat guts, OK, I get it.  That’s totally fine with me, in fact, I should be USED TO IT, right? 🙂  But this has been my one exception to the Battle of the Opposites…my stomach is getting bigger every day.  I didn’t expect it to shrink, but I really thought no matter how big my stomach got, there would still be that protective layer of fat on top of it.  I don’t know what happened but that fat has turned hard as a rock.  Too bad it won’t stay that way forever.  So I guess there are SOME health issues that won’t be opposite. 

7. Maternity Pants SUCK!

I assumed that I would just wake up one day and POW! my pants wouldn’t fit.  Luckily, my penchant for leggings saved the day, because I was exactly right.  I woke up one day, thankfully not a day that I needed to be anywhere in a hurry, and tried on 3 pairs of pants before I figured out the dryer was not the problem.  Enter the super stretch waistband maternity pants.  Here is where I went wrong.  I also assumed that if your regular pants do not fit, no big deal, you could just go straight to maternity pants and they would be great.  WRONG!  Maybe my ass is too small, maybe maternity pants are only made for people who are in the 3rd trimester, I don’t know, but these pants are terrible.  I’d tell you the brand, but I have several and they all have the same issue: SDB, saggy diaper butt.  There are not enough Be-Bands, Bella Bands, Belly Bands, etc. in the world to hold these pants up.  By the end of the day, I have enough room in my pants for a fully loaded pair of Depends and a large penis.  Moral of the story: You are going to have to buy new clothes in your third trimester anyway (if for no other reason than you’ll be in a different season and have to change styles accordingly) so the “bigger is better” rule does NOT apply to pants.  Buy your regular size and be HAPPY! 

6. Baby Message Boards…More Hurtful than Helpful

There are a million of them out there, babycenter.com, whattoexpect.com, etc. etc.  Sometimes you will luck out and find some helpful tips, but most of the time it’s just a bunch of psychotic hormonal freaks trying to see who they can make burn through a box of Kleenex the fastest.  Seriously, they are mean! 

5. Everyone’s a Critic

Speaking of baby message boards, beware of the critics.  There are some nutty people out there, and everyone truly believes their way is the “right” way and therefore will argue to the death that you are wrong, going to be a bad mom, stupid, ignorant, etc…and those are the nice terms.  God forbid you decide to do something “unnatural” like circumcise your son, formula feed or require a c-section…they’ll be all over you! 

And this isn’t even going into the opinions of family members.  Good grief!  Luckily, I have a really supportive family who I know will answer any questions I have…but that doesn’t mean there haven’t been disagreements.  Last week I had to “explain myself” because I drink milk that (at the time) I wasn’t sure whether it came from cows who were given growth hormones.  In truth, I don’t care that much, and it turned out the milk does not come from the Sammy Sosas of cattle, but the mere fact that I had to hear about it surprised me.  People mean well overall…but make sure not to ask for opinions on something if you’re not willing to take some criticism once in awhile.  I’ve decided to do whatever is best for me and my family, and whatever that is, everyone else will just have to deal with it.

4. Cheap Entertainment that Doesn’t Involve Drinking? Message Boards!

I know this might sound like a contradiction, but if you can handle the 24/7 drama-rama, there are some good laughs to be had on the message boards.

A few weeks ago, a woman asked if it was safe, now that she’s pregnant, to continue using her vibrator.  Now this is not just any vibrator.  Apparently, and I didn’t get all the details, it is some special kind of vibrator that you do not remove while having sex.  She wanted to know if it would hurt the baby if she continued to use it.  Call me a prude, but if I had that type of question…I don’t think I’d ask (or trust) the advice of total strangers on the internet.  Not to mention…if I can give up Captain Morgan for 9 months, which I guarantee I used more than this lady uses her vibrator, is it really so terrible to have to lay off the sex toys for 9 months?  Weirdo.

My other personal favorite is the first time mom, 19 so she knows everything, who asked if it was “wrong” to want to have a c-section because she is afraid of ripping or having to get an episiotomy.  THIRTY EIGHT PAGES later she finally saw the hypocrisy in her question: it’s a little ridiculous to be afraid of a one inch tear “down there” and yet wish for a much larger cut in your abdomen, through 7 layers of skin and muscle tissue.  Luckily, she finally realized she may be 19 but she does not know everything.

3. Superman vs. Super Jerk

From what I’ve gathered through speaking with several pregnant friends, you’re either going to love your husband a lot more, or hate his baby-making guts.  Fortunately, I have a great husband who is very understanding and really relaxed about all the stupid “rules.”  He asks if I want a glass of wine when he has one, he tells me to go ahead and eat turkey sandwiches, etc etc. 

With that being said, it’s important to remember one piece of advice a friend DID tell me long before I was pregnant.  Although it’s not their fault, men just don’t get it.  Women get pregnant and their whole life changes rapidly.  Everything from your diet to your clothes to your skin care regimen to your outlook on life…it’s all different now.  You are bonding with that baby every second of every day; and most importantly, you are a MOM.  Right now.  Men…they’re not growing a baby inside, their diet and clothes do not change (unless THEY are eating for two), so they do not have the same bond with the baby.  They can’t get it, it’s not their fault.  So ease up on them a little, OK ladies?  Once that baby shows up, everything changes again…if that baby doesn’t have them wrapped around it’s little finger, they’re at least stalking through the house in their ugly jeans and dad shoes turning off light bulbs and complaining about doors not being shut properly.  Enjoy this phase while you can!  🙂

2. Needle Gut

This isn’t as foreboding as it sounds, but it’s important to know.  Your ligaments stretch to accommodate the baby, and the most important ligament stretching to occur involves the ligaments in your pelvis.  Unfortunately, what they don’t tell you is that these “stretches” feel like a sharp needle stab right in the pelvis.  It can occur at any time, simply from getting out of bed or shifting in your chair.  And let me tell you, when it happens, yikes!  It’s over quickly, thank the Lord, but it’s a surprise each and every time. 

1. There are No Congressional Medals of Honor for Being Tough

Here’s the truth about all the “rules” regarding things you can and can’t do, eat, breathe, etc. (check with your own doctor first!):
-You can eat cold deli meat, just be sure you’re not eating it out of a dumpster
-You can have a glass of wine once in awhile.  Moderation is key, and not just in this rule.
-You can take hot baths and get in the hot tub.  If you turn down the hot tub to body temperature, it cannot hurt your baby, though you still shouldn’t stay in there for hours.  I will say that a 98 degree hot tub feels like a luke warm pool and, in my opinion, isn’t worth it…but to each their own.  Our bodies are a wonderful thing, and they will let you know if you are overheating. 
-You are not going to hurt your baby if you have an epidural or any other drugs during delivery.
-You cannot paint, the fumes are toxic.
-MASON COUNTY ONLY: DO NOT drink the tap water.  It is not safe for pregnant women.  Period. 

Now for the best part: THE GIVEAWAY!

Leave your best piece of information, advice, etc. in the comments or on the Facebook page, and the best one will win a $20 gift card to Shutterfly!  Contest ends Friday, Jan. 14th, 2011 at 8:00 AM!  You do not have to be currently pregnant to win!  Good luck!

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