I feel like some women know more about pregnancy in middle school than I do at 31. But now that I'm about halfway there (only 21 more weeks to go!), I've picked up some rather invaluable tricks along the way, revolving mainly around food, fashion and sleep. Here are the things I've found most helpful.
Food. When I first found out about the seemingly endless list of things I had to avoid while pregnant, I kind of freaked out since they're basically my main food groups. Case in point: on the afternoon I found out I was pregnant, I was supposed to go out for oysters and champagne with a girlfriend that evening...obviously those plans had to be put on hold. Since then, I've tried to recreate the rituals around the forbidden foods I miss the most. What I've realized is that I can recreate the overall experience and not feel like I'm missing out. So if I can't have nigiri (raw fish), I still enjoy getting a California roll or shrimp tempura since the rest of the meal feels the same, complete with miso soup, soy sauce, wasabi, ginger and iced green tea. The same goes for deli sandwiches (who knew something like deli meat could be considered dangerous?), which I'll get with all of the fixings, minus the meat. And instead of imbibing in a boozy brunch, I've been getting a virgin Bloody Mary. A couple of little tweaks and I don't feel like I'm making a sacrifice.
Fashion. The beginning stages of pregnancy are awkward. My boobs got huge, which is seriously hard to dress around, and my stomach looks like I've eaten a big meal, not like I'm carrying a baby. My tight fitting clothes (skinny jeans, clingy shirts, etc.) suddenly look too small on, but it's a little early to jump into maternity wear. The thing that has saved me are drape-y, kaftan-style dresses. They're designed to be loose and flowy, without looking like a giant paper bag. I've been wearing this Riller & Fount dress everywhere. The nice thing is that it also is roomy enough to grow with me throughout my pregnancy, which I love, since the idea of buying too many things that I can only wear for a short amount of time doesn't sit right with me.
Sleep. Sleep became an issue for me pretty early on. Whether I had to get up every couple of hours to use the restroom or just found myself tossing and turning, having a pregnancy pillow has made a huge difference. Most of the options out there are eyesores, but this one, from Bump Nest, is pretty enough to leave out. There are infinite ways to contort it to fit my body and I wake up each morning well rested with no weird back or neck pain. I don't think I'll ever get rid of it, even after the baby comes.
I'd love to know: What have been your random secrets for a happy and healthy pregnancy?