I have just a little over 3 weeks before little Liam is here. As much as I've complained about my weight gain, adjusted my social life and have adapted to some other hormonal/physical changes, I've learned a great deal in the last 9 or so months. Not only have I grown physically, but I've matured so much and adjusted to so many new changes. Usually these changes would scare the bejesus out of me, but the little guy has already changed me in so many ways and I'm so excited to see how much more growing up I do when he's finally here. These are the 10 things I learned (and loved) from being pregnant.
1) Dress yourself pretty: You grow, grow and grow some more when you're pregnant. Even on days when you want to live in your ugliest sweats, or in my case Hello Kitty pajama pants, push yourself to put a little effort into your appearance when going out in public. The compliments you get from friends and total strangers boost your self confidence, even when you're feeling gross.
2) Make new friends: Even though you have an established group of wonderful friends who support you every step of the way - make new friends with other women who are soon to be mommas. In the last 9 months I've made wonderful new friends and have strengthened relationships with those I only considered acquaintances because of being pregnant. It's nice to not only have new friends to share each step of this experience with, but when Liam finally gets here he'll have a ton of new other babies to play with.
photo via bump club and beyond
3) Reinstate or implement date night: A few months into my pregnancy, Matt and I started establishing Saturday night as our date night. We go out to dinner then grab dessert or head to the movies. It's not the most exciting night out, but has become my favorite night of the week. Before the baby gets here, it's nice to enjoy this time together. We talk about what we want for our son, how we hope to be as parents and just enjoy each others alone time before we become a family of three.
4) Buy yourself something that makes you feel good: Shopping is no fun when you're pregnant - especially if you have to finally breakdown and shop in the maternity section. Finding something that makes you feel good is tough, but when you find it - do it. For me, it was jewelry. It doesn't have to be anything fancy, but every time I was feeling a little down, it was nice to have a nice pick me up.
5) Eat as much ice cream as you want: I tried (and I use that term loosely) to really keep myself on a pretty balanced diet, but pregnancy cravings are harder to control. When your body says, "Give me ice cream" - give your body that ice cream. When are you ever going to have another get out of free jail card to eat like that again? Just remember to not go overboard.
6) Keep up with a fitness routine: This will help you feel better about eating the ice cream everyday. Since I've been pregnant I've thankfully had enough energy to at least workout 3 times a week and although I still continue to gain 2 pounds every week, I feel better about it after a good workout. It also gives me hope that after the baby comes, getting back to my pre-baby weight will be much easier.
7) Let go of things you can't control: When you're pregnant, you just have to be more flexible. There are days when you're not going to feel your best and it's going to stop you from accomplishing everything on your long to do list. Pretty soon after the first trimester, you learn to let go of things you have no control over...especially your bladder.
8) Let your significant other help you every time he offers: To this day, ever since we found out I was pregnant, my husband still offers to make me breakfast. At first my self sufficient trait wouldn't let him, but after the first week I finally gave in. Since then, Matt has offered to help in so many other ways (including buckling my sandals when I can't reach over my big belly) and it's been so nice to have someone who offers to help, instead of me always having to ask for it. I gush every time he does it because even though Liam's not here yet, he's already a great dad.
9) Admit when you've been a hypocrite: I will fully admit that I am that person who said that wouldn't do this or do that when I got pregnant. And guess what? I've probably done most of everything I said I wouldn't do. When I wasn't pregnant it was easy for me to be vocal about things I didn't want to do, but when you actually get pregnant it's a different situation. Yes, I fully admit I'm eating up my own words, but hey at least I can admit it.
10) Welcome every and any change: I surprise myself everyday with the changes in my personality and mentality that I am willing to let take place. It's scary, but exciting at the same time. Instead of fighting every change that takes place I've learned to embrace it and readjust my lifestyle with this new change in place.