So, if there was a way for the Mommy-Me of the present to be able to go back and talk to Pregnant-Me of the past, I would have a few things to tell me. These are a couple of those things.
You will not regret any decisions that you make. Holy cow, there are so many decisions you have to make as a parent, and they start right from the moment you see that plus sign. You are inundated with information and advice about all the things you should or shouldn't be doing and why. Making these big decisions is overwhelming, and you always feel like you are maybe making the wrong choice. Guess what? You aren't. It may seem like it's a life or death decision of whether or not to give your newborn a pacifier, or whether or not you have all the 'essentials' for when the baby arrives, etc., but it isn't. So pregnant-me: Decisions don't stop once the baby is born. In fact, there are even more to make now. But don't worry. Every choice you make is the right one for you and your family. Be confident in them, and don't stress about what other people think!
Poor, fat, naive preggo me. You don't know what's coming...
You will miss being pregnant.I had a relatively easy pregnancy. However, there were moments when I felt like utter crap. Actually, many moments. But still, looking back I only see the moments I loved, not the hard ones. It was a pretty awesome time, and I am excited to hopefully do it again one day. So pregnant-me: It may not seem like it when you are hunched over the toilet for the 20th time today, or you just can't get comfortable no matter which way you move, but you will miss this. All of it. So try and enjoy!
The whole labour thing is NOT what the books say it will be. So, as the days of my pregnancy were winding down, of course my thoughts were consumed with labour. When would it start? How would it go? How would I know it was labour? Every little twinge started me thinking "Is this it? Is it a contraction? Should I start timing?" I was waiting patiently for all the steps of labour to play out nicely like the books said they would. They were waaaayyy wrong for me. I am sure it is because I was induced, but still. Man, there was no mistaking a contraction when they arrived. So pregnant-me: don't spend the last week stressing about whether it's a contraction or not. You will know. Oh trust me...you will know. And also, don't fret about your water breaking in public. It will break in the hospital bathroom, and you won't care one bit.
*alert! alert! The next point has to do with...boobies! Specifically my boobies. If you are a person of the male gender who knows me in real life and you don't want to read about my boobies, proceed with caution. Also, please don't construe my feelings on this matter as what I think is best for everyone. I have no desire to make any judgements on other parents for the way they feed their precious little babies. This is just my experience.*
Breastfeeding is easy...eventually. One of the hardest things about having a new baby was trying to breastfeed. Looking back I feel it was the biggest cause of stress for me of living with a newborn. From the get-go we had some issues because poor little Peanut's head was very sore from the failed vacuum attempts, so he would only latch on one side. Also, it took a long time for my milk to come in, and my large little dude was hungry. I was exhausted after the whole birthing ordeal, and had a newborn with me all alone in the hospital room in the middle of the night who was cluster-feeding; it was a nightmare. The nurses were so patient with me, and after trying so very hard, one of them finally said I had tried everything I could, and it would just take time. They offered to give him a supplement of formula, and I started crying because I felt like a failure. Wasn't this supposed to be easy?! It was obvious he was starving, and we just weren't there yet. After a couple weeks, he was feeding like a champ, and we didn't have to supplement. Once it was all sorted, and I finally got over the initial pain that comes with breastfeeding, I ended up getting thrush, and so feeding times once again became awful. I would cry with the anticipation of him latching on. It was so incredibly painful. I remember thinking to myself that I just had to make it to 6 months. That was my goal. 6 months and 1 day? Done. But, after the thrush cleared up, it's been smooth sailing ever since. We are coming up to 6 months, and I am in no hurry to stop. So pregnant-me: Hang in there. Once that baby is born, breastfeeding is going to be HARD. It may seem like the worst thing ever at the time, but it will become like second nature, and you will be so happy you stuck with it.
I'm Amy, and I'm a Mommy with nary a clue as to how to do this whole "parenting" thing. As a former traveler, I view this as another journey, although this time without a map, a plan or a clue! We call Canada home.