Hey there! TTC human here.
In the meantime, I’m stocking up on all the information I could use about this journey I hope to commence soon. Thought I’d share some of my largesse from not just the internet, but actual moms I’m blessed to know. Also hoping some of you lovely people who have experience can share your takes 🙂
Now, if you’re currently expecting, I know 40 weeks of carrying a baby might seem like forever. But pregnancy will be over soon enough, and you will get to meet your newborn. In the months, weeks or days you have to wait, do your best to prepare for what’s ahead. As your pregnancy draws closer, there are a number of things you can put in place to help you relax and enjoy. The following are helpful ways in which you can prepare for your little one’s arrival:
1.Take Your Prenatal Vitamins as Prescribed
The minute you know you’re pregnant, begin to take a prenatal supplement containing 400mcg of folic acid. The importance of this is that by so doing, the risk of your baby having neural tube defects like spina bifida is greatly reduced. Your prenatal vitamins should also contain 27mg of iron and 1000mg of calcium.
2. Get Informed about the Birth Process
As much as you can, learn about the birth process. Merely thinking about giving birth might be scary, and you may decide to avoid thinking about it until it happens. But you do not have to. In fact, studies have revealed that women who acquaint themselves with the birth process ahead of time are more active participants in their own birth process, resulting in better outcomes. You may be wondering how and where to get informed about the process. First off, attend your antenatal classes regularly. Your matron or midwife is likely to describe the birth process, and even provide pictorial or video representations of the same during your class sessions. You can also take a birth class to help you learn about the different stages of labor, breathing techniques, equipment used during delivery and so on. On your own, you can also decide to learn about different birthing ways by watching videos of actual deliveries on different delivery methods.
3. Ensure You’re on the Same Page as Your Partner
It is highly important that you and your partner communicate well during your pregnancy, as this will help you both discuss what you’ll need from one another during labor, as well as when your little one arrives. Work this out ahead as soon as you can just to prevent differing expectations between you both. Talk about everything — from how you’ll divide your chores to caring for your baby. Be willing to educate your spouse on thing like supporting you in breastfeeding. Even now, you can begin to make some big decisions that concern your baby. These include choosing your baby’s name, deciding on circumcision, feeding methods, etc.
4. Take Necessary Tests
During pregnancy, tests will be conducted at different points in time. It is important that you take necessary tests so as to know the health and well-being of your unborn baby. Within the first fourteen (14) weeks, first trimester tests are conducted. These tests include pregnancy-associated plasma protein-A (PAPP-A) and human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), both of which determine the risk of down syndrome and trisomy 18. You might also be offered an ultrasound which measures the back of the fetus’ neck to detect chromosomal problems. This test is known as a nuchal translucency screening. Results provided from tests like these will determine whether or not further tests are required. Regardless of what you think the results of the test will be, if you are up to or more than thirty-five (35) years of age, ensure that you get one of these genetic tests.
5. Speak with Veteran Moms
Truth is, every mom is still a newbie in one way or the other, imperfect humans trying to make sure they don’t damage their precious little ones. But some have gone ahead in the journey than others, and their help would come in handy. There are certain subjects surrounding motherhood that many soon-to-be-mothers have millions of questions about. For some reason though, these topics remain taboos, never to be discussed. Such topics include the baby blues, increased or decreased sex drive, etc. Truth is, your friend’s experience will not necessarily be the same as yours, but it will help to find out ahead of time so you are not shocked or confused if you find yourself in a similar boat. Without mincing words, get talking to your mom friends- they will tell you the real deal. It will be of immense help to you when you find honest people who are willing to share their experiences with you. This way, your expectations can be adjusted. It is however necessary that you do not take on any fear. In fact, if anyone starts telling you events that make you uncomfortable, you’re free to change the topic.