- Family and Parenting
Things to expect when you're expecting
Expecting your first baby?
Sometimes it takes us months and months or maybe even years to get pregnant. Sometimes it takes one time; You never know. Either way hopefully you are excited to becoming a new parent, it is quite the adventure! I remember when I found out I was pregnant, I was ecstatic! All I could do was hope I was having a precious little girl so I could put her hair in pig tails and buy cute little frilly dresses. Well, I had my little girl! But, there is much more to think about than that.
When you find out you're expecting, you need to expect lots of doctors visits and lab testings. This is usually the most exciting part of being pregnant. Here is where you get to hear your little ones hearbeat, see them moving about in the belly, down the line find out how close you are to being ready to have the baby and so much more, the list goes on and on. It can also be the worst time, having doctors probe you or getting news you weren't expecting. Either way, these visits are essential to having a healthy baby, so don't put it off! Also, around 20 weeks or so you'll be scheduled for an ultrasound to see the little one. Now is when you can decide if you would like to find out the sex of the baby or not. If you don't, make sure you let the tech now so they don't assume you do wan't to know. Even if you do want to know the sex, there is a slight chance you may not find out, sometimes the baby won't cooperate and turn to see the sex.
Next, you can expect some hormonal changes of course. One of the biggest is morning sickness. Just because it's morning sickness doesn't limit it to that time of day. It can be any time. I know I myself had it usually right when I woke up and it didn't go away until I ate breakfast, my little one was quite the piggy! You are also going to be very emotional. One minute your happy, the next you are crying and aren't quite sure, don't worry it's normal to act this way! Of course near the end, you're going to become very uncomfortable and be ready to pop the baby right out! Usually though, first time pregnancies tend to run past the due date, unless you have had any complications.
Don't forget to expect strangers to approach you in public. For some reason when you have a baby bump hands flock to your stomach! I guess other people, usually older, are just as excited to see someone pregnant as you are having a baby. They will rub your belly and ask how far along, boy or girl, how are you feeling, and any other related questions. Feel free to tell them you aren't comfortable with their hands on you, i'm sure they will gladly back off.
Lastly, time for getting that baby out of you. When you start having the contractions, you will be ready to run to the hospital. But not so quick, they might send you right back home. They want you to be close to ready so you aren't taking up space that another woman could be using. When you are ready be prepared to be hooked up to various machines, and have nurses around. They will be checking how dilated you are and monitoring contractions and heart beats. Next you will be ready for an epidural if you choose. These, my friend, are awesome. All pain will be gone from the stomach down and you will finally get some relief before its time to deliver. So if you have to go in for C section for any reason, they will wheel you down to the operating room and prep you for delivery. You won't feel much, maybe some tugging and pressure from pulling out the baby, but nothing extreme. After your little one is delivered you head to the recovery room to well recover. If you are delivering normally they will assist you in holding your legs up and coaching you when and how long to push. Expect to be in the hospital 2 to 4 days depending on how you delivered, longer is for c section. If you have a c section you won't be walking for at least a day, then you will slowly start trying to walk and urinate on your own. It takes a little longer to heal, but you'll be fine.
It really can be a scary experience if you aren't prepared. I would suggest reading plenty of expecting books and/or browsing internet articles. You can never be too prepared when having a child. Congratulations to you if you are expecting and good luck!