Being a mom comes with a world of unsolicited advice about how to raise your kids, but what I didn’t expect was all of the advice I received while I was pregnant. I expected the usual questions, “do you know what you’re having?” “how far along are you now?” and the ever so favourite, “you’re STILL pregnant!?” It’s terrifying enough being pregnant for the first time and everything being so new to you, but having all kinds of advice thrown at you sometimes adds unnecessary stress.
Of course now it’s easy to look back and say to myself that I overthought everything. But when you are pregnant and your hormones are all over the place, it’s easy to take things personally. That being said, some of the advice I received was amazing and actually made me feel much better and at ease with everything. The rest of it, not so much.
The WORST Advice I Received
“Sleep now, because once the baby comes you won’t be sleeping!”
Okay, I mean, when you’re 8 months pregnant and already haven’t been sleeping for a while due to a bladder that needs to be emptied every 5 minutes and a giant beach ball of a belly causing you aches and pains all over, hearing this is nothing but annoying. I realize now that the lack of sleep as a new mom is wayyyyyy more intense than the lack of sleep during pregnancy, but still, this is not going to make a tired pregnant woman feel any better about things.
“Sleep on your left side, not your right.”
I don’t think anyone actually told me this, but I recall reading it over and over everywhere (because there is actually some benefit to sleeping on your left side as oppose to your right). BUT, I took this advice way to seriously and spent many nights uncomfortable and miserable. I am a belly sleeper, so as soon as my belly got to big to sleep on I was forced to sleep on my side. I cannot sleep on my back and it isn’t ideal when the belly gets big anyway. I liked to rotate from side to side, left to right, but I always had it in the back of my head that sleeping on my right side was bad so I tried not to. I regret not just sleeping however I needed to to be comfortable.
“You’re eating for two now!”
No. No I’m not. I think it is easy to get carried away in your first pregnancy when it comes to how much you eat. I indulged in every craving, which I fully support doing, but I did eat a little too much at times. It’s easy to justify to yourself because you’re pregnant, but being healthy is the most important thing!
The BEST Advice I Received
“Walk. Walk a lot.”
This was hard advice to take because I was so uncomfortable my entire pregnancy and wanted to do nothing but be a couch potato. And for the most part, I was. But when I did manage to get up and go for a walk I felt soooo much better. I wasn’t as active as I had hoped to be during this pregnancy, but knowing how good it felt to move when I did, I am going to make it a priority, if everything goes well, to be more active during my next one!
“Trust your instincts.”
This is bang on when it comes to pregnancy. Unless of course your instincts are telling you to smoke. Don’t do that! But generally speaking, you know what is best for you and your growing baby. For me, I didn’t make a birth plan. Many people suggested it, but I knew it wasn’t for me. I wanted to go with the flow. I had preferences about how I wanted things to go, but I knew myself. If I made a plan and things didn’t go according to plan I would freak out. Instead, I trusted that my baby would come into this world exactly how he was suppose to.
“Enjoy every moment. Even the unpleasant ones, because you never know if this will be your only pregnancy.”
THIS really stuck with me. A coworker of mine was chatting with me one day and passed on this piece of advice from someone who had given it to her when she was pregnant. I had somewhat of a miserable pregnancy. Overall I was very lucky and never had any complications, but my symptoms seemed to really get to me. After she told me this, I tried not to complain so much. Even though it has always been my plan to have more than one pregnancy, that is never a guarantee.
What was some advice you received? Did you find it helpful or harmful?