A Few of My Favorite Things: Pregnancy Edition
We’re 24 weeks deep in this pregnancy thing. I’m finally finding that second trimester sweet spot where I’m randomly capable of running three miles without stopping (never been done before), and somehow have the craziest desire to exercise and hash out hours and hours of work. In fact, despite the tummy tightening (and still vomiting), I like myself… better… right now?
Either way, whether it’s the glowy hormones or my return to vegetables, things are feeling remarkably better. There is a rainbow to be found, my friends.
I’ve been meaning to keep track of all the wild hacks, products that were recommended to me, and do’s and don’t’s that have been piling up in my Google doc. Now that I can finally breathe between meetings (well, kind of), these are the things I’ve been using that have made pregnancy a lot more comfortable. Although, from what I hear, the insane belly growth that’s about to happen is a far cry from comfort. Help me.
Why did adorable high-waisted wide leg jeans have to come into fashion the moment my waistline tripled in size? You guys out there rocking them: enjoy.
Someone recommended these Lululemon knockoff leggings to me and, with a healthy skepticism, I got a black pair. I wouldn’t call them a perfect replica, but they really are soft like butter and at a price I can get behind (ahem, $22). I’ll probably get another since mine are getting so much use (too much?).
I forget I’m pregnant until I have to ask Winston to put my shoes on for me. Goodbye, toe touches. Thankfully, I invested in some “faux” Birks that have been impressively up to par with real Birks (I said it). They’ve sold out on ASOS, but these ones on Amazon for an equally impressive $19 have sparkling reviews. Worth a shot.
I just grabbed a pair of these easy pink sliders (pictured above). I’m also here for these cheetah print sandals. Honestly, you just need a pair of slip-ons. Let your ankles go. Free the back. Stop leaning over.
Okay, read this. I’ve done the research up to the millionth degree, read multiple books, and chatted the ears off of fellow babymakers to hear aaaall about their birth stories. About 75% or more have recommended this book to me.
It feels like a rite of passage, reading a book from the leading midwife is the USA. It’s overflowing with birth stories and facts that make you feel uber confident about getting a human being out of you. For real. This book alleviated so many of my fears and has helped me make major informed decisions about my birth (like episiotomy versus tearing, natural versus epidural, different ways to cope, different stages and things that happen to you). Now, even Winston (pursuing a medical career) is waaaaay on my team for au naturale.
Whether you’re getting gassed up with aaaall the drugs, or planning on having your baby in a bathtub, read this book. Women are powerful.
Okay, prenatal vitamins are expensive? I was amped when I found these for only $22, compared to their $30+ competitors (which is the same as regular, non-organic prenatals anyway), and they haven’t given me the major side effects that my last bottle did: constipation (eep). I liked these by far the best, more than the Costco ones I bought, or the CVS gummies I had first trimester.
Oh, and prenatal gummies? Do not do it: nothing sounds less appealing during that first vomit-caked trimester than gummies. Bring on the vita-pills.
Support belt for aaaall the back pains
Ugh. This purchase only affirms my status as a blossoming baby whale. My body has been changing hugely, even in the past week, and the wrap-around support belt that I bought (begrudgingly) has turned into a must. Back pain is a nightmare, but this belt is quite easy to use and adjust, and doesn’t scratch my skin (like so many of the reviews on other belts claimed).
Side hack: others have told me to “definitely” see a chiropractor. Apparently, they help the alignment for you and baby and get you in prime position for birth. We’ll see!
When I’m not wearing Winston’s shirts (he’s been so nice about me hijacking his wardrobe), I’m underneath one of these basic tees from ASOS. They have a long list of basics that are all sitting in my cart and wish list. This one is super soft and a good, solid white tee.
Cold gel packs for nausea and headaches
A friend of mine (who suffered far worse than I did – moment of silence) suggested these for my in-bed-all-morning-barfing routine. Cold pressure on the forehead and back of the neck help alleviate nausea, and it did work for me! I loved these on Amazon and couldn’t recommend gel enough.
I almost bought a cooler to put next to my bed so they would be at the ready every morning. Sickness is no joke. Felt tacky, though. Maybe next round.
Another pregnancy book I’ve been loving on is the one that’s helping me get mentally ready. Truth be told, this baby of ours was not planned. I’m grateful that my body is capable of making life, but I’ve felt some serious guilt for being anxious, nervous, and upset at times about my pending future.
But! I’m a huuuuge believer in self-control and mindful thinking, so in order to work through all those “wow, this is hard” feelings, I’ve been eating this book up.
A Headspace Guide to A Mindful Pregnancy is good. It helps you develop thinking patterns around pain, depression, anxiety, and joy. It’s getting me super ready to cope with the emotions of being a mama, and to move through my pregnancy loving my body and feeling good about things. And it’s seriously working. I can totally do this.
When I found out that fertility struggles were linked to the amount of chemicals we’re consuming and putting on our bodies (back in, like, 2016), I jumped ship on everything. But I almost quit my beliefs after months of soaps and body washes totally disappointed me. Nothing was organic and up to par with the yummy, smelly body washes of my childhood. This organic Kimura soap was actually my last resort before vowing to run back to parabens (don’t do it), so I’m glad that I fell crazy in love with it. Highly suggest!
Organic stretch mark belly cream (coconut oil and essential oils)
Apparently stretch marks are genetic. Who knew? Thankfully they don’t really run in my family, but I’m not taking chances. I’ve been keeping a healthy dose of fractionated organic coconut oil on my belly (sometimes mixed with tea tree essential oils, which are good for skin).
I did aaaall the research on the best skin-saving solutions. Most everything pointed to coconut oil. And that’s good! I love it.
Liquid IV (from Costco)
My mom started making me drink these liquid IV packets, since they triple your hydration levels, taste like Gatorade, and have no harmful chemicals in them (although they’re not organic – so my glyphosate phobia is irked just a little bit).
Buuuut, if you’re bad at drinking water, this is a pretty stellar solution. Getting aaall the hydration and keeping the nausea at bay. They have them here on Amazon, but they’re a bit pricier than grabbing a pack in the medical section of Costco.
TBH, this list could be much longer. Among the unsung heroes are: Hello Fresh, which we’ve indulged in for a month (and it’s been a joy and relief not having to meal plan or really grocery shop). Grove Collaborative, for getting me to swap out all of my chemical cleaning products for clean ones. My nail lady. My eyelash girl (who I actually literally text whenever I get weird pains – hi, Hannah, you are my rock). Friends who’ve done natural births and are full of information, support, and serious “do it!” energy. Yoga! Winston (sometimes). My supporting, cool, and empowering doula.
And Pinterest, for making parenthood feel like a fashion show.