As I begin the third trimester today (yay!) those first twelve weeks of pregnancy seem like a distant memory. While it was a super exciting time, it was also just a bit stressful. Having to avoid certain things and activities whilst keeping it secret, was not easy. Add to that silent stress about the health and well being of the tiny human growing inside me, and my mind was full of what if scenarios!
Then there were all the actual physical changes happening in and to my body. I read a lot, and Googled ever more (who am I kidding, I still am!), but not really knowing what was normal and was not is somewhat emotionally draining. Especially because none of it is ‘normal’ to you – everything is new and unknown.
I’ve been very fortunate to have a reasonably straightforward pregnancy thus far. I was never sick and aside from excessive tiredness, I can’t really complain. Then at the end of the first trimester when you first get to see your little baby – well it’s just magical.
It’s been, without a doubt, one of the most exciting and anticipated periods of my life. But I won’t pretend navigating the unknown has been easy. Here are a few of the things that have helped me along the way…
1) Reading materials
I think within 24 hours of finding out I was pregnant, I had ordered What to Expect When You’re Expecting from Amazon. It’s everyone’s go to guide, probably because it contains a huge amount of information in easy to digest format. I highly recommend!
I also downloaded their app – while I think its more geared toward an American audience, it’s a great resource. I also use the Pregnancy+ app – another great one for daily and weekly updates.
2) Nakd bars
One symptom that appeared almost overnight was the hunger pains. If I didn’t eat something, anything, every two to three hours, I was not in a happy place. Between working and travelling it was sometimes difficult to have a healthy or fresh snack, so I stocked up on these.
They’re the perfect size to carry in your handbag. Plus they’re made from 100% natural ingredients – just fruits and nuts. They’re gluten and dairy free, have no added sugars and they keep that hunger at bay. My favourite flavours are Berry Delight, Cocoa Orange and Café Mocha.
3) Hair elastics
Once again a simple hair elastic came to my rescue (if you missed my video, I use them to help put bracelets on too!). A couple months into pregnancy, my jeans became a bit snug but were still totally wearable.
I wasn’t ready to get into maternity clothes quite yet so I used an elastic, looped around the button and hole, to add a bit of an extension. It seems too easy, but this trick never failed me – until my bump grew too big!
4) Lotions and potions
I’m not sure how common it is, but I was sooo itchy in the beginning of my pregnancy. I’ve always been a bit slack about applying the moisturizer but quickly realized what a godsend it was.
You’re skin is stretching and there’s all kinds of hormonal changes happening so it makes sense. My favourites at the moment are Aveeno and Palmers.
I was also gifted a Mama Mio Pregnancy Starter kit and some Bio Oil – both of which I’ve quickly went through. I’ve become consistent in applying either the oil or cream to my belly twice daily – so far no stretch marks!
5) Water bottle
I drink water like a camel regardless, but have found myself even thirstier throughout pregnancy, especially when I’m out and about.
I totally recommend buying a proper water bottle. I got mine at TK Maxx for I think £3.99. I love the no tilt straw bit – which will be super handy during L&D and while breastfeeding. Plus the tuck in straw means I’m less likely to spill it – becoming clumsier during pregnancy is no joke!
Did/do you have any must-have items for mums-to-be in their first trimester? Please share your tips and recommendations or any thoughts on my favourite things! And stay tuned for my must-haves during my second and third trimesters as well.