A is for Anxiety. About literally everything. Am I eating too much chocolate? Am I squishing the baby when I sleep? Have I felt the baby move recently? And Asthma. I developed it when I was pregnant. Who knew that was a thing?
B is for Bio Oil. Expensive, but good for stretch marks and any scars you might pick up during the whole process. I used mine on my C-section scar and on Tiny’s head when she stumbled into a nail (I’m pleased to say she only has the ghost of a scar now).
C is for maternity exemption Certificate. Make sure you apply for one of these so you can get free prescriptions and dental care. Find out more here: NHS Maternity Exemption Certificate
D is for Dentist. I had to have a root canal whilst pregnant and they can’t give you any drugs. It was the actual worst. I haven’t been back to the dentist since.
E is for Eggs. What’s the point of a fried egg if it isn’t a bit runny? I didn’t give up runny eggs. I’m a terrible person.
F is for Fetal heart monitor. We bought one. Honestly, I wouldn’t recommend them. It was really hard to distinguish between all the different noises in there and there’s always the danger you might mistake something else for a heartbeat. If in doubt get advice from a professional.
G is for Group B Strep. Group B Strep is a bacteria that can cause problems in pregnancy and labour. A test for it is not available on the NHS. I got panicked about this by various online forums and other friends so decided to order a home test. It was negative. I’m not sure it gave me much peace of mind but I’d done what I could. You can order a test here Group B Strep Test or you can find out more here: NHS Website for Group B Strep and here: Group B Strep Support
H is for Hunger. I was eating for two, maybe three. Wherever I was there were snacks. I even had Graze boxes delivered to school so I could look like I was eating healthy snacks rather than just guzzling “share bags” of Wispas.
I is for Internet. Don’t do it. Don’t Google symptoms. Don’t post on baby boards. Don’t read baby boards. Although there was a lot of comedy, there was also a lot of unnecessary stress and self doubt.
J is for JoJo Maman Bebe. They have some great maternity clothes but it’s quite pricey so sales are your friend.
K is for Kegel exercises. I’m sorry midwives everywhere. I didn’t really do these. Every time someone mentioned them I would nod encouragingly, do a few and then immediately forget about them. Oops.
M is for Maternity leave. Take it a little early if you can. Enjoy those last few weeks of just being you. I left work two weeks before my due date and Tiny was a week late…I did a lot of crafting and reading and box sets. It was bliss.
N is for NCT classes. Would I recommend these? Yes, absolutely. I made a great mum gang. The regular meet ups and the WhatsApp group were priceless especially in the early weeks. However, I didn’t find the classes super useful. I was the last of my friendship group to have a baby so I had a fair idea about how things worked. Also I HATE roleplaying.
O is for Occasional crying for no reason. Stupid hormones.
P is for Pee. Frequent peeing and peeing into cups (all the time).
Q is for Questions. How will I know if the baby is too cold? What is SIDS? Do I have Group B Strep? Should I try for a natural birth? Are these cramps normal? Is it ok to have a McFlurry?
R is for Rare steak. I had one at a wedding. I have no regrets. It was amazing.
S is for Stretchmarks. I didn’t get any. I don’t know if I was just lucky or if a combination of Bio Oil and Neal’s Yard Mother’s Balm actually worked.
T is for Tired. I had to make afternoon naps a thing whilst pregnant. And by naps I mean from 4.30 to 6 when I could…
U is for Underwired bras. I really missed those whilst pregnant. Buying bras is tricky and expensive as everything kept changing. I plumped for M&S.
V is for vomiting. I didn’t vomit. Not once. I’m eternally grateful for this.
W is for Wine. I really missed wine. Alcohol free wine is bad. Really bad. The best alcohol substitute I found was nice Tonic water with loads of ice and lemon/lime you could almost believe there was gin in it…
Y is for Youtube. Don’t watch other people’s weird birthing videos.
Z is for Sleep. Why do people tell you to bank it before the baby comes? That’s not a real thing.
P.S. Take Bumpies. You’ll miss it when it’s gone.