Oh my gosh!!! I’m pregnant!!! My husband & I are beyond thrilled that we will be bringing another little munchkin into our family. We cannot wait to hold our little guy in our arms and watch him grow up alongside his older brother. Such great, great news – and we both feel incredibly lucky and grateful for this tiny, beloved miracle.
(So with that said – I also want to give a huge apology for being gone from this blog the past few months! My first trimester was a tough one – but I’m so glad to be through it and on the other side now. Once I hit my second trimester, I started feeling better and more energized, and I’m looking forward to continuing to write on this blog.)
In celebration of our good news, I wanted to share a little about how this first trimester went, some highlights from pregnancy so far, and some tips that helped me most in getting through this first trimester.
If you are pregnant or thinking about getting pregnant in the future, I hope the tips and info in this post are helpful, and I hope you enjoy reading about our little munchkin (who’s apparently currently the size of an avocado! 💗)
Favorite Moments from My First Trimester
- My absolute favorite moment so far was the ultrasound I got to do at 12 weeks. For about 20 minutes, I got to sit back and watch my baby on the monitor as he wiggled and raised his little hand and moved about – and it was so much fun. There’s something so magical about watching your baby on the monitor for the first time… it just makes everything feel so real and magical and miraculous. It can be hard sometimes in your day-to-day (especially early on in pregnancy) to really sense your baby is in there, living and growing, and this ultrasound is one of my all-time-favorite memories of getting to see my little guy for the first time.
- At 13 weeks, my husband & I shot a gender reveal smoke cannon and it was so much fun! (By the way, we ordered our gender reveal cannon from PoofThereItIs on Etsy & they were excellent!) We didn’t do this when I was pregnant with my toddler, but I was dying to try it this time around – and so glad we did! My immediate family came over and we stood in our backyard as my husband shot the cannon… and blue smoke came out! It was such a fun moment – and I really loved getting to share it with my husband, son, and close family. Such a treasured & fun memory.
Before I jump into my first trimester symptoms, I first want to give a note of encouragement to anyone pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant. The first trimester of pregnancy (from conception to week 12) can vary so much from woman to woman, and even from pregnancy to pregnancy (so you might not experience many of the ones I did! 🤞). If any of these symptoms sound like they could be overwhelming… I just want you to know that even though yes, they can be tough, I hope it’s reassuring to know that despite experiencing some tough symptoms during my last pregnancy, I decided to try and get pregnant again because I feel like it’s totally worth it and at some point, I knew those symptoms would end. I hope that’s encouraging to anyone currently pregnant or considering. 😉
- Nausea – Nausea is definitely the toughest symptom I faced in my first trimester. In my last pregnancy, I was nauseous from my first trimester until the day I delivered, all day everyday. With my doctor’s recommendation, I took anti-nausea meds during my entire last pregnancy – and thankfully that did work to help keep my nausea in check. Because of that, I knew going into this pregnancy there was a chance I’d go through the same thing – and sure enough, I did. I’d say my nausea this time around is a little worse, but I feel extremely lucky I found medicine that helped with my nausea (I ended up using something different than form my last pregnancy because what I used last time didn’t work.) For me, nausea started up around 6 weeks and felt more manageable around week 15.
- Fatigue – Wow, fatigue during my first-trimester was rough! I think in my case it was a mix of a few things – for sure I was tired just because of all the hormonal changes that go on during the first trimester, but it was also compounded by the sleepiness I felt as a result of the first set of anti-nausea meds I tried. Heavy fatigue is a side-effect of that medicine, and I experienced similar fatigue when I tried it during my last pregnancy. Luckily, I switched off of that medicine to other anti-nausea medicine after a few weeks (that didn’t have drowsiness as a side-effect) and then around week 14/15 my energy really started to come back.
- Pregnancy insomnia – For about 3 weeks early on in my first trimester, I was having pretty regular insomnia most nights. I usually don’t have any problems sleeping, so being up for 1-3 hours per night was definitely not easy… but it helped that I often went to bed early and slept in until the last possible minute to catch up on sleep. Luckily, the majority of the insomnia I experienced lasted just a few weeks and has only occasionally happened since then.
- Night sweats – I’d almost forgotten about those pregnancy hormonal night-time sweats that I have throughout a lot of my first trimester. It feels so odd (especially b/c I usually run cold, if anything)… but luckily not the worst symptom to deal with.
- Feeling hormonal/emotional/sensitive – Now that I’m in my second trimester, I can clearly see how much more emotional I felt during my first trimester. It’s easy to understand why – the mix of hormones plus feeling so nauseous, tired, and lousy for so long – it’s the perfect mix for some very emotional days. I tried to talk through my feelings as best I could – I really leaned on my mom, sister-in-law, and best friend plus listened as they helped me make sense of what was rational versus… less rational, and I feel so thankful for their support through all of that. Luckily, by about week 13, I was definitely feeling more like my self again.
my first trimester must-haves (a.k.a. the Top 5 Things That Helped Me Through My First Trimester)
Working with a doctor I really trust – I really leaned on my doctor throughout my first trimester. I really and truly appreciate and trust my doctor – and for me, finding a doctor you trust and feel good teaming up with is so important. I’ve seen her for years and she even delivered my toddler, so I couldn’t have nicer things to say about her. She’s open and tells me all the facts about everything we discuss, and she listens really well to all of my questions and concerns. I’m so glad I switched to her as my GYN before my husband and I started a family. If you’re thinking about getting pregnant, one of the best tips I can give is to find a doctor you trust and feel comfortable talking to and feel good teaming up with. It’s made a huge difference for me!
Leaning on my husband, Mom & closest loved ones a lot – I knew going into this pregnancy that my first trimester would likely be the most challenging part for me because of nausea and the delay in finding medicine that works and the time it sometimes takes to adjust to meds – so I’d somewhat mentally prepared for the fact that I’d need to ask for more help during those times. I had a conversation with my mom earlier in the year about possibly getting pregnant, and she was completely supportive and willing to help in any way possible. And when my husband & I talked about trying to get pregnant, he completely understood the need to help out extra during those times and was on board too. That said – it was still so hard to ask for help initially and to not feel guilty.
In retrospect, I know it sounds silly that I’d be laying on the couch full of guilt while trying to not throw up plus super tired from the mix of hormones, lack of sleep, and side-effects of the anti-nausea meds… but that’s honestly how I felt. It took several weeks of openly sharing my feelings with my mom and husband and closest loved ones, and constant reassurance from my mom every time she came over to help (which was almost every weekday morning!) for it to sink in that it was ok that I was asking for help. I think this time around I felt more guilt because having a toddler that I’m now responsible for, I’m constantly worried about whether he’s getting all the love and attention he needs from me – but I’m here to say that weeks later, yes he is doing just fine and really it’s good for him to have extra time with dad & grandma who both love him so much. And also, although I’m not sure he’ll remember it, I think it’s good for him to see me accepting help because one day I want him to know he can lean on the people he loves when he needs help too.
Sleeping (and resting) as much as possible – This really was important yet can be challenging to fit in. Right now, since I’m home taking care of my toddler during the day and my son normally wakes up around 6:30am – my plan was always to sleep until I heard him waking. This was hugely helpful since I was awake in the middle of the night with insomnia for a few hours most nights. Also, when my son took his afternoon nap, I’d often take a short nap (20-30 minutes) if I could. When I was feeling my worst, I would spend his entire naptime just sitting on the couch trying to rest as much as possible before he woke. All of this added together (along with lots of help from my husband and mom) made a difference. Of course there were mornings when I felt like I was going to pass out at 10am – so if my mom was over helping me, then I’d try and sit on the couch and let her take the reins as much as possible with my son. He also had extra TV time at times when I was alone with him and felt really sick, and although in the moment I felt incredibly guilty – I now know that I did the best I could and that he still felt loved and cared for at the end of the day.
Eating upon wake-up – This is something that helped me ease morning sickness in my last pregnancy and that helped this time around too. Basically, as soon as I’m out of bed, I’ll head straight to the kitchen to have a plain waffle. (I rotate between my two favorites: Van’s gluten-free apple-cinnamon and Nature’s Path Gluten-Free Homestyle waffles.) These waffles are both pretty plain (which helped me avoid queasiness in the morning) yet still tasty, and since they cook in the toaster, they were quick to make first thing in the morning. So handy! Even now, I still have a waffle most mornings to help my stomach settle.
Ginger tea & an electrolyte drink – One of the hardest things for me during the peak of my nausea was finding something that I could actually drink without throwing up. In the end, I was only able to tolerate two drinks for the majority of that time – ginger tea made by Pique Tea (I really like their quality and wrote more about why in this post, if you’re interested) and sugar-free Gatorade or Powerade. I would make a cup of ginger tea first thing in the morning, and then whatever was leftover I’d save in the fridge to sip on later in the afternoon when I didn’t feel like drinking Powerade/Gatorade. For the rest of the day, I’d pretty much sip on whatever flavor of sugar-free Gatorade/Powerade didn’t make me want to gag. (Normally, I really like LMNT electrolyte drinks only because personally I think it has better ingredients… but sadly, like I said, I couldn’t stomach anything else at that time and so this was the happy compromise that I went with. 😉 )
Eating something sour – Sour foods can sometimes help with nausea, and this was definitely the case for me. My go-to meal was a lunch salad with my favorite veggies, beans, and a dressing made from one squeezed lime, half a squeezed lemon, plus some olive oil and salt. I tried to prep a big bowl of it once or twice a week to leave in the fridge so I could quickly grab some for lunch (and having something prepped ahead of time was key because nausea can really peak quickly around mealtimes for me). During some of my worst nausea days, this was something I could count on being able to eat and still feel ok. It also felt great knowing I was getting in some healthy veggies and fiber. If you’re dealing with nausea and haven’t tried sour foods, I think it’s worth a shot.
What I’m Looking Forward to in my Second Trimester
- More fun with my husband & loved ones! Now that my energy is back and I’m feeling better, I’m dying to get out of the house a little more with my husband and closest loved ones. I’m looking forward to hopefully a few outdoor dinners with my husband while they weather is still gorgeous outside, and hopefully some more fun catchups with loved ones. Can’t wait!
- More workouts – I feel like I can now ease into some more regular exercise now that I’m feeling better. I recently went for my first (short!) bike-ride with my son and husband around the neighborhood and that felt so nice. I’m looking forward to more walks/slow jogs, bike rides, short Peloton rides, and some light strength training mixed in. It feels good to be able to start this back up, mainly because I know I’ll feel better and feel even more energized.
- Starting to feel baby’s kicks & movement – I love the feeling of a baby moving because it’s just a sweet reminder that baby is living and growing – and that’s so exciting. I can’t wait to feel those little reminders soon.
I hope this post was helpful to you! And if you’re currently in your first trimester, just remember – you got this!
More posts you might enjoy:
- 3 Inspiring Women Reflect on Motherhood
- June Favorites
- 5 Things I Would Do Differently Today as a Newborn Mom