This post outlines First Trimester Must-Haves that helped get me through a rough first 13 weeks of pregnancy.
I took the above photo this past weekend (14 weeks) first thing in the morning before I ate breakfast and I can see our little girl popping out to say hi! Previously, I kind of felt like my tummy popping out was bloating or from eating a lot of food…but since I hadn’t eaten a thing yet I am absolutely thinking this was baby.
I’m finally starting to feel more energetic and a more like myself, so I wanted to share a post with some of the things that really helped me get through the tough first trimester. When I read about morning sickness or heard others say they experienced nausea in the first trimester, for some reason I thought that meant I may feel a little sick to my stomach sometimes but I would still be able to work through it. I completely understand that each pregnancy for each person is different, but I will be honest in saying I grossly underestimated what the first trimester may feel like.
The first BIG symptom I experienced was extreme fatigue, and I really mean extreme. I am usually the type of person who needs about 7 hours of sleep, thrives in the early morning and can g0-go-go with the best of them. Almost as soon as I found out I was pregnant, I would find myself daydreaming of crawling into my bed and sleeping (and I am not a napper!)
After a week or so, I really couldn’t fight the fatigue anymore and would sleep any chance I could get.
I was pregnant when we were in France. We had a great time on the trip, but it was at a much slower pace than normal. I took a 1-2 hour nap in the middle of every day and was sleeping by 8pm.
Brian took this selfie when we first arrived in Paris, which I think is a pretty accurate depiction of how I just couldn’t keep my eyes open no matter what was going on.
Specifically lavender, peppermint and ginger essential oils. I would have one of these three going in the house, I would take baths with peppermint oil, and I would just sniff the ginger to get a quick moment of relief. These essential oils helped in the moment when I was smelling them, which was wonderful but the effects were short lived. If I wasn’t actively smelling the aroma of the oils, they didn’t help. That being said, I still find these scents soothing and relaxing.
I am so thankful of my friend and family network, because there was always someone with an answer to a question I have. One of my friends is an integrative medicine physician and recommended I take ginger supplements (she mentioned that 1,000mg per day is safe for pregnant women) to help with the nausea. I could absolutely feel relief once I started taking this supplement. There were still many days when I couldn’t get off the couch or I still got sick, but I felt like this still helped move me toward my more normal self.
A few friends mentioned these little sour candies helping with their morning sickness, so I thought I would give them a try. They were great to keep in my purse or pocket for times when I was on the go and started to feel a little queasy. I got the kind with Vitamin B6, because my doctor told me that vitamin is supposed to help with morning sickness.
As soon as we got home from France until really last week, I laid on the couch in sweats all day every day. It was the only thing I could do because I felt so bad! Thankfully, I found these cute and super comfortable sweats so I at least changed out of my pajamas and got into these sweats like an outfit for the day 😉
I’ve recently posted on my instagram asking for help because my face is breaking out. While I absolutely am breaking out more than ever before, I am finding that witch hazel is a great way to dry out some of the breakouts. Each breakout seems to happen in a cycle where it is pretty bad for a few days then clears up a bit, and I really think the witch hazel is helping with that.
I have always been a huge water drinker and am used to carrying a large water vessel around, but I had no idea that I would be SO thirsty all the time while being pregnant! It is a huger life saver to have this large, cute tumbler with me at all times that keeps my ice water ice cold all the time.
My mom came and stayed with us for a couple of days when things were really bad and she cooked many meals for us, helped with things around the house, kept me company and it was SO helpful. I can’t thank her enough for doing that!!!!
Without medication, I was getting sick every hour, and I am thankful that I knew to talk to my doctor about this and figure out a plan that worked for me so that I could at least function (even if it was just a little some weeks). If you are pregnant and have a question, don’t feel right, or literally anything…talk to your doctor.
Right at about 6 weeks I started feeling really sick all the time and really tired all the time, so instead of exercising I rested. While in France, I found it hard to walk for more than 15 minutes without needing a break. All this is to say that from weeks 6 to 14 I didn’t exercise. I would try to walk the dogs occasionally, but I found it really hard to even walk a full block. Now that I’m feeling better, I am working my way back into a regular fitness routine and I am so thankful that I rested when my body needed it most.
Because I literally couldn’t leave the couch and all I wanted to do was anything that required zero mind work, I watched a ton of television and Netflix. When I need a break in the middle of the day, I still sit down to cuddle with the dogs and watch TV. Everyone said this to me, and I’m passing this on to you….rest, relax, watch TV if you want, take a bath, do whatever you need to do to feel good.
Eating Whatever Sounded Good
I literally mean whatever sounded good, because NOTHING sounded good most of the time and being hungry made feeling sick a million times worse. There were many days when I would have a bagel and juice for breakfast, cheerios a couple of hours later, order something from Subway for lunch, and then eat two different kinds of potatoes for dinner. I’ll be honest in saying it was hard not to feel guilty because I wasn’t eating wide variety of colorful fruits and vegetables and other real, whole foods like normal but everyone told me that it was ok (and it IS ok). Our bodies are so smart and do what they need to do, which I kept (and keep) reminding myself. Now that I’m feeling better, I am absolutely incorporating more vegetables and balanced meals than before but I’m still paying attention to what sounds good, eating when I’m hungry, and trying to give myself grace.
Trying Not to Compare Myself with Others
This was and is a hard one for me, and there was more than once when I would feel uncomfortable with how I looked. Thankfully my mom and Brian knew just the right things to say, and a huge thing was to NOT compare myself to others that I see on social media, in person, or anywhere else. Each person is different and each pregnancy is different and that is absolutely ok 🙂
Left: week 6
Right: week 14 (I can tell a difference!)
I plan on sharing more details as things progress (2nd and 3rd trimesters, selecting a doula, books I’ve been reading, etc), but if you have any other questions let me know in the comments below!
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