How To Feel Better In Your Pregnancy: Important Tips Every Mom-To-Be Needs To Know
Pregnancy is an exciting time. It is, perhaps, the closest time in the physical sense that you will ever be to your child. The child within the walls of your body is sharing your breath, your nourishment, and feeling the constant rhythm of your heart. When I was pregnant with my first child there were a few key details no one thought to share with me. What I discovered on my own:
1. Remove ALL Rings From Your Fingers
To me, this may be the most important detail to keep in mind: neglecting to remove a wedding band during the third trimester can prove embarrassing, if not traumatic. I remember waking around midnight, my fourth finger in pain. I sat up, flipped on the light, and saw that my fingers were swollen. The wedding band on my finger cut into my flesh and I just had to remove it. I tugged and tugged, but the ring would not budge. I asked my husband to help, but he knew no methods. I made a panicked phone call to my mother and she instructed me to try butter. So, I lathered up the finger that cried out in pain, and pulled at the offending ring delicately at first. It didn’t budge. So, I pulled harder on the ring as I simultaneously slathered on even more butter. But, that didn’t work either. If anything, it irritated my ring finger even more. I then tried soap on the finger that burned from the tugging of that tight restricted band of metal. But, that didn’t work. Helpless, I went back to bed and tried to fall asleep with the suffocating gold that wrapped around my finger. The next day while I was at work, I asked my fellow co-workers if they had any ideas as to how to remove the ring. One woman suggested I contact the local fire department. I thought this was the most bizarre, ridiculous thing I had ever heard. The fire department! They would think I was out of my mind. So, instead, I telephoned a local urgent care facility. The woman at the urgent care told me they wouldn’t do it as they didn’t have the appropriate equipment for the job and didn’t want to be held responsible for any destruction caused to the band of gold that suctioned the life out of my fourth digit. She suggested checking with the local fire department, as well. I couldn’t ignore my swollen finger anymore, so after dinner that evening, my husband and I reluctantly walked into the fire department and presented my problem. The fire chief didn’t seem shocked. Apparently, he had serviced similar people with rings stuck on swollen fingers in the past. However, he had a rookie in-house with him that day and he wanted him to attend to me finger. The chief instructed me to sit on a stretcher inside of an ambulance that was parked in their garage. The rookie, taking what looked like hedge clippers, shook as he neared the metal appliance towards my wedding band. He slipped the sharp pliers between my fat flesh and the white gold metal band, pinching me, and cut down. Two snips and he was able to cut the wedding band that had been on my finger for two years from my digit. I looked down at my fat finger, expanding without its binds and at the ring that now sat in the palm of my hand, cut open into a “C” rather than an “O”. The fire chief mumbled something about how I could get a jewelry store to weld the ring back together, and we said our thanks and goodbyes. I have never welded that ring together as I wear my engagement ring now as a wedding adornment. I cannot stress enough: Remove all rings by the beginning of your third trimester. Just in case.
2. Never Suck In Your Pregnant Belly
I know, this should never be a point someone should have to be told. However, I never even thought about not sucking in my pregnant gut. I was in my second trimester, clowning around with my co-worker as we ended out break-time, when I thought it would be hilarious if I sucked in my “beer belly”. I said something like, “I’m not pregnant, haha!” and my co-worker laughed and waved goodbye as she returned to her desk. I released my pregnant belly back to the volleyball size it was and started for my own desk. But, I felt sore. Sore like I had spent the evening before doing 500 sit-ups and was now feeling the rewarding burn. I sat down thinking that was pretty stupid to suck in a pregnant belly. For the next two or three days my abdominal muscles were sore. I wasn’t in pain, just a bit uncomfortable. I was relieved when the soreness finally went away and scolded myself for being so thoughtless.
3. Do Not Go Overboard With Fattening Cravings
When you’re pregnant, you think, I have nine months to eat what I want—finally! Unfortunately, this is not true. It never is. A pregnant woman who overeats or eats too many foods that are nutritionally deficient will be a fat pregnant woman. At first, she gets by eating as she pleases, none to the wiser. “Oh, she’s pregnant, that’s all,” family, friends, and co-workers say; but, soon enough--perhaps by the middle of the second trimester--it is clear the pregnant woman has abused her right to eat for two. She has filled out in more places than just her protruding baby bump. She is more than just “swollen”. She is fat. Now she wonders if she even looks pregnant. Add depression to the onslaught on super-high hormones and watch how the pregnant woman wishes she’d have this baby already! One note to point out: When I was pregnant, I would eat plenty, but then I'd face stomach growling constantly. So, worried my baby wasn’t getting enough food, I would appease my own “hunger” by eating more. It will be hard, but try to resist the stomach churning if you’ve already eaten decently. A fetus only needs you to eat approximately 300 more calories a day than what you'd normally eat if you weren't pregnant. It’s really hard to ignore these phantom hunger pains when you’ve already been feeding (no pun intended) into them, but try as best as you can. For the average woman, shedding post-pregnancy weight is difficult. Just think: you’ve almost spent a year carrying another person inside of you while not moving as much as you used to. That’s a big “habit” to break.
4. Start Using Stretch Mark Cream As Soon As You Find You’re Pregnant
This is another pointer no one told me that I wish they had. It is not rare these days to catch a stretch mark cream commercial on TV. As women grow older, the need for better skin creams and lotions are becoming very popular. Using a specially-formulaic skin care cream for a quickly-growing pregnant belly is becoming commonplace to women. It had been suggested to my sister to use a stretch mark-fighting skin cream when she was pregnant, lucky her. She used one both times she was pregnant and let’s just say, she can wear a bikini with none the wiser that she was ever pregnant…except for when she’s lounging in the baby pool area with her little boys and they’re screaming “Mommy!” at her.
If you find you’re pregnant, congratulations! You will have
plenty of time to enjoy being a soon-to-be Mommy, and it will seem like it’ll
be forever before you get to actually look at your baby’s face. But, in the
meantime, add these points to any others you may pick up from family, friends,
co-workers, and pregnancy books. They will serve you well in your pregnancy
line of defense. Good luck!