The first time I was pregnant I wasn’t blogging, so this time around I’ve been so excited to share the whole process with you!. I was lucky enough to connect with my friend Cortney, fellow style blogger of The Grey Edit, through the local blogging scene and we became fast friends. Not only that, but we found out we were pregnant within just months of each other (this is her first).
We both get asked a lot of questions regarding pregnancy so we thought it would be fun to do a dual post where we can each share own our unique experiences. She is currently 24 weeks while I’m approaching 16, and she is having a boy and me a girl! It’s been so fun bonding with her over this experience and helping answer all her questions. And now, we are excited to answer of all yours!
What have been your worst symptoms?
C: As I mentioned in my recent first trimester recap, I’ve had a pretty decent pregnancy thus far, and am so thankful! I so thought I was going to be bed-ridden and sick and unable to do anything, but it’s been the complete opposite. Zero throwing up -- thank god, because I do not handle that well. During the holidays, however I experienced some depression, which I didn’t realize until after. I was going through all of the emotions of being surprised, excited, terrified, all the while trying to keep the news to myself until a certain week, so I felt very alone and unlike myself. It also just didn’t feel like the holiday seasons we were used to -- busy being jolly and overly social. Luckily, Trevor was there to get me through and before I knew it, the new year hit and I was refreshed and feeling alive. That, mixed with being really effing tired have been the hardest. I’m a busy body and not being able to go at my regular speed has been an adjustment. But that all changed once I hit the second trimester. Energy is back, and I’m good to go!
J: I feel pretty lucky in that I haven’t ever gotten physically sick (as in head in the toilet), but man, weeks 6-11 were rough! I went through a few weeks where I felt nauseous all day long. With my first pregnancy, I would feel nauseous in the morning but as soon as I ate something it would go away. This time was very different. I would also get really bloated at the end of the night which is when the nausea was the worst. I think it was all the carbs I was eating trying to digest themselves. I also felt WAY more tired and out of it. I think there were a couple factors that contributed to this, mostly being that I am now taking care of a toddler (that in and of itself is tiring), but also January and February is cold and dreary in Seattle, so the lack of motivation and need to stay on the couch all day was a problem. You can read more about my experience with the first trimester and tips that helped me through it, here.
Have you been able to workout? What have you done?
C: Yes! And again, I was relieved because I thought I wouldn’t be able to. Since finding out, I’ve kept on my Peloton routine and have been keeping up with doing barre twice a week. Trevor and I even did a 30 day fitness challenge over the month of January - where we had to do some sort of physical activity each day, and it was awesome. It totally helped me stay energized, positive and was a big stress reliever. Going on walks with Smalls and Trev have also been a lot of fun -- it’s like we’re walking as four ;). I have taken a step back from running, however. I did a few runs when I was in my 6th - 8th week, but after recently trying again during our trip to Kauai at week 19, I realized it was painful and just not worth it. My boobs and bladder felt like they were going to explode!
J: The first couple months, no. I felt so tired and unmotivated and the gym was the last place I wanted to be. Once I started feeling better (around the end of the first trimester), I was back to the gym and trying to go at least 3 times a week. Now that I’m into the second trimester and feeling great, I go even more (or when I have time), but I always at least try to get outside for a quick walk or do a bunch of chores around the house that involve going up and down the stairs for a bit of cardio.
How different did your body feel during & after pregnancy? Any labor & tips for adjusting?
C: I’m a very mind over matter person, so the night I found out, I remember being so dramatic and in tune with my body that it kinda freaked me out that stuff was going on inside of me. So I felt different from the start. The normal bloating that I have dealt with all my life enhanced to a whole new level. My boobs -- tender as all hell. In fact, they still are. Nips -- doubled in size, it’s crazy. At night, since hitting the 20 week mark, it’s been uncomfortable to lay in bed at times. I can feel my organs shifting and moving around, prepping for the growing baby. Trying to sleep on my side vs back has been an adjustment -- as well as dealing with back pain. I’ll admit, I’ve been terrified to have my body change, gain weight and morph into something new. But as the days go by, and I see my bump growing, I feel more and more beautiful and shocked as to how amazing our bodies really are. So my advice would be, take care of your body. Continue to do the things that make you feel good. And as the changes come, stay in tune, document and embrace. It’s a crazy, magical thing.
J: During: I was lucky with Tayler in that I only gained about 20 lbs and I didn’t really gain weight anywhere but my belly. This time has been a bit different. I always heard you showed a lot sooner with the second and that’s definitely been the case for me. Also, because I was feeling so crummy early on, I also was eating all the carbs (which I was doing very little of pre-pregnancy). This caused me to gain weight a lot of places other than my belly which was hard for me. But now that I’m feeling good again and working out more, my eating habits are back to normal and I can already tell a huge difference in my body. I try not to beat myself up about weight too much. I’m growing a baby after all and I need to eat what satisfies me.
After: I was so nervous about not being able to get the weight off after pregnancy. I’ve always had a very slow metabolism and I wasn’t sure how my body would react. To my suprise the weight came off super fast. I know some people don’t want to hear this, but I was back to my pre-pregnancy weight in just about 2 weeks after having Tayler. I wish I could tell you I was doing something special (it wasn’t the breast feeding because we had a lot of struggles with that the first few weeks), I think I just got lucky in that I didn’t gain a ton of weight to begin with.
Labor: Oh boy, I could write an entire blog post about this (which I will do after this one is born), but I will say that no one talks about the parts after you deliver the baby! Probably for good reason because it’s not a pretty sight. If you deliver naturally (vaginally) then I will say that you should ask a lot of questions to your nurses about self-care after you get home. There will be a lot going on down there and you’ll want the right supplies. Most hospitals should supply them for you, but if not, take what you can with you and send your hubby to the drug store ASAP. It does take about 4-6 weeks for things to feel normal down there so give yourself some grace and take it easy. Your body has just been through A LOT.
Can you share how your self-care has evolved or changed during pregnancy?
C: I’ve been a huge advocate of self-care over the last two years, and more so since leaving my corporate job. I’ve learned that my best output comes on the days that I’ve put my body and health first. With this, I’ve tried to maintain my 7-step morning routine during pregnancy. But, because it is seven whole steps and life is now a bit more chaotic now, I’ve been good about keeping up with around five. Drinking water first thing and taking my probiotics, prenatal supplement and vitamins when I get up has been essential. And most definitely, drinking my bulletproof concoction -- because ladies, you don’t have to give up your morning cup of coffee. Making the bed is still a non-negotiable, because it’s a great first win / fresh start to the day. And the daily sweat has now turned to more around four days a week, but it’s so worth it. On top of this, I’ve been taking advantage of the offerings at my med spa - Skinlogic - for prenatal massages and custom facials, since I had to give up Botox and laser hair removal treatments -- along with the occasional madi/pedi. Lastly, chiropractic care has been hugely helpful. Dr. Schramm not only maintains my spine health, but has been prepping my body for birth, which is so cool!
J: I’ve always been pretty good about self-care, but it was much easier the first time around when I didn’t have another child to take care of. Thankfully, I have an amazing husband who knows the importance of “Jenna time” (more on that in the next question) so he is great about taking over when I decide to sneak out for a mani/pedi. Pedicures are god’s gift to being pregnant - trust me. Bonus: you will get an even longer massage if you tell them you’re expecting or better yet, they see your belly. Also, your hormones are crazy pretty much the whole time, so sometimes getting out for some alone time is a game-changer. Whether that’s going to a coffee shop by yourself to read a book or doing some retail therapy, just make sure to take time for yourself. Growing a baby is hard work!
How has your partner been through your pregnancy thus far?
C: I love this question because I’ve observed that since finding out we were pregnant, so much of the focus is on the woman. I mean, rightly so, we’re doing a lot of the work! But you can’t forget about the other half. Trev has been such a huge help and support in so many ways. From his insane excitement, to always making sure I’m okay (maybe too much at the start), cooking healthy meals, trying to remember small tasks around the house and planning financially for our new addition. He’s been there for every appointment, has taken notes and read books about becoming a father, and is even pumped to take a class with some of his other soon-to-be-dad friends, called Conscious Fathering. We’ve felt connected on a deeper level. We don’t really argue anymore, because there’s just too much to be excited about. We still have sex -- though I will admit, as this belly grows, it’s getting a little weird! Haha. But it’s awesome guys. If my love for him has grown this much already before having our boy, I can’t even imagine how it’s going to grow post delivery. My advice to expecting moms would be to communicate with your other half as much as possible so they can be there for you and you can be there for them when you each need.
J: Okay, I think this may be one of the most important questions that we’ve been asked. I can’t tell you how important it is to have a supportive partner during this journey. No, they will not understand everything you’re going through and don’t expect them to. But they should make the effort to be there for you whenever possible. Like I said, we are hormonal AF and sometimes we may rage on them for no apparent reason (No? Just me?) but they need to understand that’s just part of the process and it’s nothing personal. So give them the heads up that you may need all the foot massages, late night ice cream runs and lots of time on the couch to binge watch Bravo. Since this is my second pregnancy Wes knows the drill, but having him pick up the slack with Tayler has been instrumental in making this pregnancy just as great as the first. I don’t know how I would have raised my child the first couple months if it weren’t for him. That is no exaggeration. I was so physically exhausted that I couldn't get off the couch to even play with her. I know he’s not reading this but just in case he does…”Wes, you’re my boy blue!”. I love you.
How did you find out the gender of your baby?
We each shared our gender reveal and how we did it on the blog! Read our posts here.
What are your nursery plans?
This is something we each plan to showcase along the way!
C: OMG I’m so excited to share the plans we have for our nursery. BUT, first thing’s first, we might be selling our house. HA. We like to keep it interesting in the Bigelow fam. The timing is crazy, but we’re exploring the idea of possibly moving to a neighborhood closer to water and better schools. Though our area is pretty rad right now, we figure why not see. And if we do decide to stay, we’ll feel confident in the updates we’re planning to do, like the nursery, and will be able to enjoy for some time.
J: After we moved into our newly renovated home, I didn’t even bother decorating Tayler’s room because I found out shortly after I was pregnant and I knew that her room would become the new nursery. This means I get to style a new space from scratch (using the same furniture cuz hand me downs are where it’s at). But Tayler will get a whole new room with all new stuff which I’m super excited to design! I’m make sure to share both rooms with you!
We will be covering all the questions below in our maternity style post where we each style a different look based on casual style, wear to work and events! Stay tuned!
What maternity/nursing specific clothing do I really need? Can I get away with “regular” clothes?
Any styling tips for maternity photos?
Comfy non-maternity clothes to wear?