Here is a small list of things that have been essential for me up to this point. I try and keep it real on the “not buying useless junk” front, so the list is pretty bare bones, but you get the idea.
1. Bella Band
This little tube of stretchy fabric has saved me so much angst and money and having to wear hideous maternity jeans that I sometimes just kiss it. It’s a knockoff of the branded “Bella Band” (they can be found all over Etsy) and I think it was around $15.
Basically you wear it over your regular pants with the fly and/or zipper totally undone and in this way you are able to keep wearing your regular wardrobe for many, many months.
For example here’s me wearing a cute pair of mint jeans that I bought in my REGULAR size, and will be able to wear post-baby, because little do you know that they are completely undone! HUZZAH!
2. Belly Cream
I don’t know if it’s doing anything, because although I don’t have any stretch marks yet, in the stretch mark game it ain’t over till it’s over (I’ve heard of many women thinking they’re in the clear and then BOOM, 35 or 37 weeks in they appear).
Nonetheless, damn does it feel good!
I’m alternating between a ridiculously expensive hippy-dippy paraben-free organic blah blah blah one from Mama Mio, and my old skincare standby, pure unrefined Coconut Oil.
I try and use one or both everyday, especially after showering or before bed. It feels soooo good to slather it on and does a lot to cure the itchy belly that so often comes with pregnancy.
BONUS: When my belly is all greased up like a giant bowling ball, the light reflects really nicely off of my outie bellybutton and it’s awesome to chase Adam around with.
3. Tide Pen
It’s totally uncharacteristic for me to be endorsing a Tide product. I hate their laundry detergents, am actually usually campaigning against their detergents (Make your own! Learn how here!) but hear me out on this one.
This pen is the only reason I can still wear most of the shirts in my closet. Without it, a good portion of them would be forever relegated to dusting cloths or the Gus dress-up box because they’d be permanently stained right at bump-level.
I didn’t think I was a messy eater, but I was wrong. It’s just that before when I would try and cram something in my mouth and it would miss and fall, it fell to the floor, or onto my jeans where I’d rub it in and pretend it never happened. Now however, it falls directly onto my gigantor belly and sits there staining my shirt for all to see.
Get a tide pen to carry around with you as soon as you start showing and you’ll minimize the fallout from the embarrassing evidence of your gorge-fests.
4. Supportive Third Party
Seriously, get one of these ASAP. Mine is my husband, yours could be your partner, mom, friend, or telemarketer you keep on the phone a little too long. Either way you need to have one in place.
Adam has been indispensable during this process – he shared my excitement/panic when we stared at that positive test, he brought me water every time I threw up in the first few months, he’s teased me and kept me lighthearted about the numerous changes (pleasant and not so pleasant) that have happened to my body, and more than once I’ve sent him into the pharmacy to buy things that I have been too mortified to.
Pregnancy is an incredible process, and one that I have loved almost every step of, but it can also be terrifying and nerve-wracking and stressful. You need a buddy to help get you through it.
5. The Internets
Oh my god yes, The Internets. Here is a partial list of my google search history from the past few days:
- Can you dent your baby from poking it too much?
- French baby names
- Vintage baby names
- Baby names that don’t suck
- Ombre dresser
- Baby position by hiccups
- Why is my baby hiccuping so much?
- Birth classes
- Birthing mantras
- Pregnancy weight gain chart
- Organic bassinet mattress
- Cheap organic bassinet mattress
- Will paint fumes harm my baby?
- How to get your husband to paint something for you
Seriously y’all. I used to think The Internets was for porn. Now I know the truth: The Internets was created for, and is utilized by crazed, paranoid pregnant women analyzing every symptom and researching every bizarre twitch and thought and dream and movement that pops into their heads.
The Internets is a blessing and a curse but I couldn’t do without it.
That’s all I can think of for now – did I miss any? What are/were your pregnancy must haves?
Not only do I now have to keep a pile of q-tips next to bleach to spot bleach my white t-shirts at bump level (not to self to get tide pen, thanks), I made a spectacular belly error this week. I was sautéing at the stove, and I reached up to get some spices from the cupboard above the stove and did not take into account my bump. As I reached up, exactly at the spot where my tshirt lifted and there was a gap of bare skin just below my belly button, my belly came into contact with the edge of the frying pan. YIKES, did that hurt. I now have this red burn mark that looks like an off-centre smiley face below a belly button nose.
Belly bump fail.