As a first time (expecting and New Mom), I had no idea what was in store for pregnancy or Motherhood. I read lots of books and articles, and talked to friends and family members who had kids. I researched a lot on the internet, and read “What to Expect” books and Baby Center religiously, and figured I would just do the best I could do to take care of myself and my baby. Afterall, Motherhood is a natural thing right?? I knew it would be full of challenges, but I had also heard how rewarding it would be. Still today, I am amazed at what my body did to grow and nurture another human being. It’s almost surreal; and now that I’m going through the process again, I am constantly thinking about what I can do better or differently this time around.
- First and foremost, I have decided I want to take better care of myself. I worked out at the gym quite a bit in the beginning of my first pregnancy, but as time went on, I started slacking. I walked 3 miles around my neighborhood just about every day starting in the middle-ish of my second trimester and continued walking until the day I went to the hospital to be induced, and even though looking back, it wasn’t as much as I could have been doing, it was still something, and for that I was proud. I was able to bounce back pretty quickly after I had Garrett and I know a good part of that was due to the walking I did. Prior to getting pregnant this time around, I had trained and participated in a Sprint Triathlon and I know that after we have this baby, I am going to give my body a break from baby making. So I owe it to myself to get my body back to its’ “happy place” and I also know that in order to get there it is going to require a good amount of weight (on top of my baby weight) loss and LOTS of toning. In order to get a jump-start on this process I am making it a priority to not only walk my 3 miles at least 5 days a week, but to utilize my awesome Gym. They have a GREAT child watch program that I feel very comfortable leaving G at, and a very accommodating class schedule, which allows for me to attend at least 3x a week. Of course I am cautious and I continue to listen to my body and modify when necessary, but I feel great and I’m hoping that if I can keep up this sort of schedule (with some added pre-natal yoga) that I will be able to…
- Let my body go into labor naturally. My blood pressure was somewhat elevated towards the end of my first pregnancy, and although I tested negative for pre-eclampsia, my Dr’s felt it would be best to induce me at 39 weeks in order to prevent any complications that could arise should my blood pressure continue to rise. Again, being that it was my first pregnancy I was hesitant and a little bummed, but the only thing that mattered to me was that I deliver a healthy baby so I obliged. I don’t know first hand if labor and delivery will be much different without pitocin, but I have heard that it is; and I think that if my body can do what it’s supposed to do without medical intervention, I may be able to go a little bit longer without getting an epidural. I’m not saying that I won’t get an epidural this time too (that thing made L&D much more tolerable) but I do think that if I am able to get up and walk around, or get in the bathtub or sit on a birthing ball (rather than being confined to a bed) during contractions that my mind and body may be more tolerant, and I might be able to prolong the epidural administration. Again, I have no comparison….yet…but I am anxious to see the differences.
- Breastfeed longer. I was very fortunate that Garrett and I had such an easy transition into breastfeeding. He latched right away and nursed like a champ for several months. He had surpassed his birth weight by 4 days after he was born and he continued to thrive, and didn’t have so much as a stuffy nose the entire time I breastfed. But he was an early teether, which made it somewhat painful to nurse during the day once those chompers came in. He also started to get pretty distracted while nursing around 6.5 months which made it difficult and frustrating for both of us, so I was only able to nurse him when he was sleepy which was at his nighttime or early morning feedings. I continued to pump throughout the day until G was 8.5 months but I HATED pumping and my supply started to deplete a little bit so we had to start supplementing with formula and eventually transitioned him to all formula until he was about 11.5 months which is when we started whole milk. I guess when it comes down to it, we kind of both(meaning G and I) decided to wean, and I am happy that I was able to provide him with breast milk for as long as I did, but I think I would really like to nurse for a full year this time around.
Along with these 3 things, I want to snuggle whenever he/she will let me, take lots of pictures and continue to create tons of great memories with our family. I also really hope I am able to divide my attention equally between the 2 kids and that they will never ever go a day without knowing just how much their Dad and I love and cherish them.
What about you??
Whether you are expecting again or just thinking about the future what is one thing you would like to do differently your second time around?