Let's just say I dropped major F-bombs when I found out I was pregnant for the first time back in early 2010. I wasn't ready. I wasn't prepared. The whole thing was a total surprise and I wasn't shy about freaking out in front of my husband. That was then... and I absolutely regret it.
Because of my fear-filled, immature attitude at that time about what being a mother means, my main focus during pregnancy was: How to bounce back fast after baby? (It wasn't until the actual delivery of my first daughter that I realized how fabulous becoming a mom actually is...)
So what bounced me back? A few tricks that fall under the canopy of absurd, unusual, unconventional and totally semi-shallow. And, I'm not shy about spilling my not-so-secret secrets with pregnant friends these days. My top three shameless pregnancy tips, to you from me:
Get naked. It's no secret how I'm a big believer in walking around in (only) underwear the weeks following birth... but it's also a smart move to start this wacky practice during the eighth and ninth month of pregnancy too... you know, where you're really popped out there. The more I saw my body changing (bigger, bigger, bigger!) the more desensitized I got to feeling self-conscious about my body towards the end of pregnancy and beyond.
Shut your mouth about sex. I'm not talking about what's happening in your bedroom... I'm talking about what's happening in your belly! (Lol.) Thanks to my irrational fear of motherhood during my first pregnancy, I opted out of finding out the gender of my babies. I was so scared of becoming a mom, but I was more scared of possibly becoming a mom of boys -- simply because I grew up with sisters, and well, I was so freaked out about having a baby I figured that to live in ignorance (until I gave birth and fell in love with my baby, girl or boy) was best for my sanity. Not knowing the gender of my baby proved to be the most talked-about and fascinating fodder for my family and friends and kept everyone extra-interested until the final reveal. (Not to mention, I also got products and gear I actually used at my showers and for gifts instead of fourteen pink tutus because I was having a girl...)
Wrap yourself. A few days after delivery, grab yourself a postpartum tummy wrap and wear it as cinched-tight as you can without losing the ability to breathe. (I'm serious.) I like Belly Bandit, but there's a whole slew of options available today so find one you like and run with it. I wore my belly wrap for forty days straight, morning and night, and didn't take it off unless it started smelling funky and I had to wash the thing. My tummy and back and felt beyond-supported, my internal organs no longer felt floppy on the inside and I felt like a million bucks on the outside because my body felt 'tucked-in' underneath my clothes.
All this frivolity aside, pregnancy is... well... incredible. No matter what your background, expecting a child is the most incredible and fabulous gateway to a more 'focused' you in mind, body and spirit. Own it, flaunt it, enjoy it and don't forget how much it changed you for the better after it's over.