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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

(this is for a blog buddy) HICK CHIC GUIDE TO GESTATING!

My blog buddy and fellow Four Corners writer, the wonderful JKB, has just announced her pregnancy!


When I was pregnant for the first time, I felt pretty darn smart. Here I was, little me, all busy growing an entirely new human, right there inside me! Of course, this was a few weeks after I got over the shock and accepted the fact that I wouldn’t be riding a horse for a few months, might never look the same again, and would always, forever, the rest of my life, be somebody’s mother.


I’ve done it twice, and learned a few things each time. I know we MOTHERS like to spew advice at every occasion, but it’s not just to show off, honest! It’s because we wish we’d heard it, or because it was such good advice it has to be passed on.


Here’s the best advice I can think of if you’re growing a new person:


EAT. If you have to, eat two of every meal! I’m not saying you have to pig out, but if you are hungry, it’s for a reason. That little thing is growing at a ridiculous rate and you will feel the drain. Eat breakfast and snack again before lunch. Eat supper when you get home and again when your man gets home, or whatever suits your schedule. Carry snacks with you.


A system of eating 6 little meals rather than 3 big ones is going to help you later, when your baby belly is squishing your stomach up under your lungs and even though you’re hungry, there’s no room.


This whole “eat a lot” thing isn’t permission to junk out though, okay? Eat things that are actually food, rather than stuff made in a factory and wrapped in plastic. Eat real food.


DRINK. Water. Drink lots of water. Listen, I’m not gonna speak in codes here, this is the honest truth... you do not want to get constipated when you’re pregnant. There, I said it. Let’s not speak of this again. Go get a glass of water.


SLEEP. Go to bed early, like maybe two hours earlier than you normally do. Most of us don’t get enough sleep as it is.


Especially in your first months, you need to sleep a lot. I was working in an office the first time around, and at lunch hour I’d head into the boss’s room to crash on his couch while he was out. I don’t think I’d have made it to 5 pm without that, but I had to get creative.


STAY ACTIVE. All those muscles will change over the next few months, so keep them strong and flexible. Of course, I wouldn’t know about this because I was ordered to bed rest in order to keep my babies where they belonged until they were fully baked...


BE SENSIBLE. If your doctor orders you to bed rest, you gotta do it. Don’t whine that you’re wasting your life away, or you don’t have time, or any other kind of rebellious resistance. Damn right you see all the dust on the shelves when you’re not allowed to get up. Too bad. Find a good book. Once I made my peace with being a beached whale for the next 6 months (okay five) I decided to just enjoy this time. It wouldn’t happen again until I’m in my 90s most likely, so I settled in with a stack of books and learned how to relax.


PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR EMOTIONS. Pregnancy brings on a whole range of emotions. Feelings you wouldn’t have thought could happen at the same time will course through you, together and then in sequences. Don’t worry if you’re ecstatic one minute and then sobbing. Just let it be.


However, if you feel that it’s out of control, don’t just put up with it. If you’re worried about a nagging emotion, or any kind of obsessive thoughts, speak up. Tell your doctor. Some serious stuff can come at this time. Be honest with yourself and recognize if your emotions are scaring you. It doesn’t mean you’ll be a bad mother - I think it’ll make you better.


NEST. Don’t take on a big renovation project but by all means, putter around and get your nest feathered. Enjoy it. You’re building a home, and I don’t mean the physical building: I mean home.


BABY-PROOF. Your kid won’t come out of you walking and reaching for dangerous stuff, but do it now, if you’re physically capable. If you’re young/ poor enough that you haven’t accumulated a lot of pretty and delicate things in your home, you are that far ahead already! Pack stuff up, give it away, whatever, but make your life easier and get your home ready. (plus making cleaning easier once Jr’s in your life. Not that I’d know...)


MOISTURIZE. I’ve head it said that stretch marks are more dependent on the skin you’ve inherited, but why take the chance? Smooth some lotion or oil on your expanding belly. Even if it doesn’t prevent marks, it’s comforting and soothing. Don’t forget to include your thighs and butt. Yep, you’re going to stretch aaaall over. And your boobs, they’ll likely expand. Just sayin’.


LAUGH. Find a way. You’ve got a lot on your mind, and comic relief feels pretty good.


DEVELOP A SELECTIVE INFO FILTER. You don’t have to take any of my advice. You don’t have to take anybody’s. Filter out what you can’t agree with. I think it all deserves a first listen, but if you judge the advice to be wrong for you, don’t even let it in.


EASE UP ON THE SPENDING. Yeah, I know, I’m just famously cheap, but you know what? Babies need less things than we are currently led to believe. Most baby furniture can be bought second hand (always check current safety guidelines) and there’s nothing wrong with hand-me-downs. The kid doesn’t know the difference and won’t remember! I’m an opinionated little hick who grew up cheap and raised my own babies cheap, but I truly believe that material things aren’t as important as we think they are.


TRY THE PLAYGROUND TEST. Yell a potential baby name across a playground. If you feel stupid, don’t give your baby that name.


RELAX. We’ve been doing this for like, a million years. Take deep breaths and be thankful.


And you know what? I think it’s perfectly okay to feel slightly smug. You are growing a whole new person. Aren’t you smart?


16 comments:

Biddie said...

Omg, the playgroud test. SUCH A GOOD IDEA. Truly.
Eating is good too. When I was in my first couple of months with Jessica, I was fainting and dizzy and I felt all tingly. Wanna know why?
I wasn't eating. I just wasn't hungry.
I think that the name test should be mandatory.
Just sayin.

Heidi the Hick said...

You were so skinny when you were first pregnant with her! You did something right though because she sure turned out lovely!

I did the playground test with my dawg too. True story.

Remember how less-than-thrilled I was with my god-baby's name at first? Did I ever tell you why? A family friend proudly announced that she got that name off her favourite soap opera and I was silently groaning.

but NOW I think of only one person when I hear that name, and I think it's perfect, and I can't imagine her being named anything else.

JKB said...

Yeah, so that emotions thing...you just made me BAWL.

Thank you for your lovely advice! And this is a great post!!!

*cries some more*

We've got good names, the kid won't be embarassed. I promise. :-)))

Thanks again, crit buddy. XOXO

Kimber said...

Now where was all this fantastic advice 12 months ago, missy? I especially like the permission to feel smug.(0:

I have one more piece of advice to add to yours: enjoy every moment, regardless of whether you're barfing your guts out, watching body parts expand to three times their normal size or acting like an emotional wreck. Pregnancy is a gift that not everyone gets to open, so treasure every day of it.

Heidi the Hick said...

Kimber! so, so SO true, and a vital piece of advice. Thank you for reminding me!

JKB, anytime babe! Just thrilled for you, I really am. I know how much you wanted this!

Heidi Willis said...

I love this!! What great advice!!

The playground name thing is hilarious!! I'd never have thought of that.

Do be careful of initials... Especially if it ends up being a girl - you want to make sure that first and middle initial don't end up something embarrassing if she marries someone with a different last initial. I've seen it happen. Just saying...

What a terribly exciting time!! I know even when I was sick as a dog (sicker, really), I felt so lucky to have the baby growing. And when it kicks - or somersaults - well, there's nothing like it.

Biddie said...

Omg. Please tell me that this was a friend of mine, but someone that you knew?
I actually did hear the name first on tv, but I just thought that it was so unique. Little did I know that 18 years late it would be so popular.
That's why it took us a week (or more) to name Jessica. There are just soo many of them...Still, it is a beautiful name, not like say...Ocean-June or something.
Just sayin.
Kim is so right. Sometimes I forget how lucky I am...I get caught up in what didn't happen, but I have been so blessed.

Kerri said...

LOL! Great post!

RuckusButt said...

This post almost makes me want to get pregnant. Almost ;)

mommyrides said...

Ug I'm away from my kiddos for the first time since I was pregnant with the last one, and then I read your BLOG!!! Now I think I'm gonna go curl up in a corner and cry, I miss my babies so much, even though the last one just turned 5!!! S'okay though, she says she's gonna be my baby forever, and I'm okay with that!!! :o))

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