Pregnancy is a wonderful phase in anyone’s life and it should be enjoyed to the fullest. These months are the preparation of a beautiful new life ahead that you never know existed. It is not only a mother’s prerogative to do her best before & during her pregnancy, but also the partner’s duty to ensure the smile on her face never fades away.
Being a first time mom, my baby has completely changed my life and my perspective in life. I’m blessed with a wonderful hugsband who has supported me every step of the way. I’m also grateful to have found a super-strict doctor who helped me reach my ultimate goal.
If you have the slightest itch that you would like to have a baby in the near future, reshuffle your lifestyle choices as soon as possible before you even get pregnant. Be the fittest, healthiest and happiest you can be. The best you can do is to do your best. Here I have penned down some tips on lifestyle choices with a bump:
Keep your days stress free and nights restful with a full nights sleep. We made every weekend a retreat into our beds where we made up for all the sleep we would be loosing once the baby gets here 🙂
Picture credit: RSN8
Hair & Make up: Debra Saniya Waqar
An active lifestyle is the key to a healthy life and it is extremely crucial during pregnancy. I worked till 2 days right before my baby was born and I was walking to work every single day! At my 6th month, I enrolled in an amazing yoga class ( Zen Yoga) that not only gave me a new perspective about myself but also gave me a lovely community of friends to interact with. The hugsband and I would also head out on long walks late at night, and this was an excellent stress buster.
This is not the time to start a new fitness regime, make sure you stick to what you know your body and endure. Make sure you don’t stretch more than 70% of your limit. This is an investment to a beautiful delivery and speedy recovery that one must not ignore. It is recommended to take it easy during the first trimester.
Make sure to consult your OBGYN before you start any fitness program.
3. Eat right
This is probably the most important aspect during pregnancy. I was cooking up until late in my pregnancy and this kept me in control of what and how much I ate. I made sure to include healthy grains, green leafy vegetables and lentils that worked for our appetite. I let go of sugars as much as I could; I really did not want to land up with gestational diabetes, as my father’s side of the family has a strong history of diabetes. Make sure to snack on nuts and berries throughout the day to keep your metabolism up. This is not the time to over indulge in sinful food, unlike how the old adage goes. This is also not the time to go on a diet. Eat right, and eat frequent meals to keep your energy levels up.
Do give yourself a cheat meal once in a while, but try not to over-indulge. And trust me, all the controlled goes for a toss once you deliver – postpartum is when you actually are eating for two!
4. Capture the journey
Make sure to capture your beautiful moments and places you visited while they were inside. While you are at it, embrace your belly and smile. You will surely miss being pregnant once the little monster gets out! Pen down your journey and when you read them years later, you’ll laugh at every silly symptom which would’ve felt like a mountain at the time.
I managed to stick to my pre pregnancy clothes throughout the first trimester. I then transitioned to looser tees, leggings and loose cardigans to work. By month 5, I went all out and bought very good maternity clothes mainly from ASOS that I wore till the end. Make sure to be comfortable in what you wear. You will need to dump all your heels for a while, it is just to be careful.
I was glued on to every single development in the pregnancy and kept abreast with the help of multiple Apps and the handy book my sister gifted – “what to expect when you are expecting”. What I really missed out is reading about what happens after the baby gets here! But I don’t think any books or apps could have prepared me to face my baby.
7. Spend quality time with your bed. Take care of yourself
Make the most of your time before the bub gets here. Pile on all the sleep you can get. Take your long baths, I really really miss them now 🙁 Get your nails done and a hair cut, maybe. Indulge in some certified pre-natal massages.
8. Build your support system
They say it takes a village to raise a child, and it’s so true. You need all hands on deck at least for the first few years. Build your support system of experienced mothers and other pregnant mothers so that you can gain knowledge from others experiences and share relevant information with your peers as well. The sooner you start, the easier it gets down the road.
The nesting instinct kicks towards the end of pregnancy for most mothers, and some fathers as well. Roll with it. Make your home a welcoming haven for your soon to arrive bundle of joy. You will have absolutely no time or energy to make the effort once the baby arrives. You will have to depend on the spouse or other friends & family to fetch things for you.
10. Music 🎶
Listen to your favourite music throughout the journey. My baby for sure loves Coldplay! If your mind is calm and happy, so will the baby’s. I also heard a lot of Classical music like Mozart and Beethoven – you will find tons of playlists on YouTube; this is supposed to be very helpful for babies brain development. We managed to go for a Mozart concert in Vienna and this was truly a thrilling experience to have with the bump 🙂
11. Kegel exercices
It really helps to do Kegel (pelvic floor) exercise right from the start; in fact, Kegel exercises are excellent even otherwise – throughout your life! It is extremely helpful in the long run and you will be thanking yourself once you’ve delivered.
Though there are plenty of stretch mark creams available, I feel a simple daily routine of applying moisturiser or oil to your bump, hips, back and legs really goes a long way. I used plain ol’ home – made coconut oil and I highly recommend this.
13. Spend quality time with your partner
Life as you know it is about to change. Get out on regular dates during the pregnancy, and find every reason to celebrate with a fun dinner at home. Cherish the quiet times. We were lucky to have lived in Dubai during the pregnancy and we managed to get out to some exciting places and late night walks in the sultry summer months.
Check out this fantastic post by As the Bird Flies Blog on tips for traveling when pregnant
14. Set your intentions right for the birth day
This is something I learnt over time from my previous Yoga training and from Claire, my pre-natal Yoga teacher at Zen Yoga. Set your intentions for the birth day and for your baby. Pregnancy and delivery are overwhelming terms but can be a beautiful experience if you tune your mind well. Labour & Delivery are tough, but are nothing but mind over body experiences that women have been going through since times immortal.
15. Find a suitable OBGYN and hospital
I know many women opt for home births and alternative birthing options but what works for the stereotypical pregnancy is a good OBGYN who will not necessarily be your friend, but will guide you through the right path culminating in a beautiful birthing experience. We found our guide in Dr. Paramjit Luthra at Medcare Hospital, SZR. She is a tough nut and can come across as slightly rude and in-your-face. But this really worked for us, as we did not need a friend who would applaud at every extra piece of cake that I ate but would be a strict goal keeper as she has your ultimate interest in mind. If she was any more lenient, I would’ve probably gone overboard and probably had a tougher time during labour & delivery.
Read my post on travel tips during pregnancy here.
A new baby is a wonderful addition to any family. Enjoy this beautiful phase, before the madness sets in!
Disclaimer – this is a blog post based on my own experiences during my pregnancy. Please consider that every body, and every pregnancy is unique and what I’ve mentioned may or may not be applicable to you. This post may contain affiliate links at no additional cost to you