Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Some Pregnancy Advice

(If you’re a guy, you might want to come back Friday. Unless, that is, you are about to welcome your first child. In that case, you totally need to read this. Then go give your pregnant wife a foot massage.)
In honor of my sister Curly and a few other friends who are expecting their first baby, I have decided to discuss some pregnancy things.

Because I’ve done this whole pregnancy/labor/delivery thing a whole one time, I feel I can provide valuable information.

Or at least some unsolicited advice and opinions. Because I’m cool like that.

So here are a few Do’s and Don’ts for the pregnancy and preparation for the baby to arrive:

Don’t get freaked out by the zillions of books on pregnancy. Choose one or two and leave the rest in the bookstore.

Do sign up for every free magazine, baby website, etc. you can find. Yeah, you’ll get a lot of junk mail, but they’ll send you free samples and coupons too.

Don’t freak out when the scale starts to move…sometimes too quickly for comfort. Your body is growing a human being – give it a break.

Do feel free to smack anyone who makes a comment about your weight. Blame it on the hormones.

Don’t listen to everyone who tells you their (or their brother’s wife’s cousin twice removed friend’s) horror stories.

Do choose your big baby gear (carseat, stroller, etc.) in gender neutral colors. You can always accessorize!

Don’t spend an arm and a leg on a crib. They’re just going to use it as a teether, anyway.

Do slap the hand of anyone who touches your belly without permission. Again, blame it on the hormones.

Do make a budget for the things you will need to buy. There are so many great things out there, it’s easy to go overboard.

Don’t get too many clothes in size 0-3 months. You need a lot of sleepers and onesies at that age, but not too much else. It’s hard to play dress-up when they’re that little, and honestly, you’ll be so stinking tired you won’t have the energy.

Don’t take the tags off of everything you get as a gift. Go ahead and return some things you know you won’t use and keep the stuff you are unsure about using with the gift receipts. You can take stuff back for up to 90 days usually, and by that time you know what you need and don’t.

Don’t return diapers, even if they’re so big you can’t use them for months. Unless, that is, your little one has already outgrown them. You’ll be thankful for a break from buying diapers when that muchkin finally grows into them.

Do ask around for a good pediatrician and make a prenatal appointment with your finalists (most clinics don’t charge for these, and if they do, your insurance may cover it). Take a list of questions about things that are important to you.

Don’t settle for a pediatrician that you don’t like or don’t feel comfortable with, even if they are “the best”.

Do exercise, but don’t kill yourself.

Don’t go overboard on decorating the baby’s room. Once you’re stumbling around the dark in a sleep-deprived haze, you’ll be more thankful for functionality than cuteness. Not that functional can’t be cute, but think functional first.

Do read up on breastfeeding if you decide that’s the route you want to go, and be prepared for things to not go smoothly at first. Also, take advantage of the lactation consultant at the hospital/pediatric clinic.

Do read up on labor/childbirth (and/or take a class) and think about some things you’d like.

I’m sure there are lots more things I can say about preparing for baby, but this list is already long enough. (Did I really just say that?)

Tomorrow, I’ll discuss hospital stuff, labor/delivery, and bringing the baby home. But in the meantime, here are some more of my pregnancy stories…feel free to peruse.

And please feel free to add your own pearls of wisdom! Pin It


  1. I love the list - wish I'd had one of those! :) And, you certainly hit all the major things - that's pretty much what I'd list out too!

  2. stretch marks are going to happen with or without creams. Don't spend tons of money trying to prevent them. Lotion is a good thing on that sour, stretched out tummy. Plus, if it's your first baby, you shouldn't worry how horrible they are until you done with having babies because you will probably get a few more with each baby.