So you’re expecting your first bundle of joy, and you want to do everything perfectly during your pregnancy. Of course, you do! That’s only normal. We all want to make sure that we are taking good care of our little bun in the oven. 🙂 But what if you’re doing some things now that you may think are mistakes later?
I started thinking about all the different things women do (and don’t do) during their pregnancy, and I began to wonder if veteran moms had any advice for first time prego mamas. I reached out to some experienced moms and asked them if they did some things during their first pregnancy that they regretted. After hearing their responses, I knew I had to share.
Here are their top 10 mistakes (some) first-time pregnant moms make:
1. “Only Thinking About the Nursery and Baby Registry.”
“Pretty much all I thought about during my first pregnancy was all the stuff that I needed for my daughter and how I had to make her nursery perfect before she arrived. I never really put a lot of thought into how I should prepare for labor and delivery. And I didn’t think about what postpartum recovery would be like…or breastfeeding or getting my baby to sleep. That didn’t dawn on me until after she was born. I was just fixated on getting this stroller or that monitor or this mini chandelier in her room. Yes, that stuff is cute and fun, but it really is silly in the grand scheme of things. I should have spent more time thinking about what was to come and have been more prepared for what to do when we brought her home.” – MH
2. “Not Having Any Formula Samples in the House.”
“For some reason, I thought that breastfeeding was going to be easy. ‘It’s natural,’ I said. ‘Women have been doing it forever,’ I said. How hard could it be? Well apparently…Really. Freaking. Hard. At least it was for me. But I didn’t keep any of those formula samples that I was given because I told myself I would not feed my baby formula. Wellll…when your milk takes 5 days to come in, and your baby is screaming at you the whole night, and your nipples are cracked, and you can’t go to the store until it opens the next day, you panic! Even if you don’t plan on formula feeding your baby, don’t throw away the samples. Keep them just in case of emergencies. Because when your baby is hungry, you have to feed your baby. And breastfeeding can be harder than you think!” – AF
3. “Getting EVERYTHING on the Baby Registry.”
You seriously don’t need shoes for your newborn or 12 swaddles or 3 strollers, etc., etc. You may think that you need #allthethings, and the store clerk that is helping you with your registry (of course) wants you to get the entire store, but you don’t need it all. Several products are unnecessary. You may still want them, and that’s okay. But if you are trying to save money or lessen the baby clutter, then just register for the basics/necessities. I promise that you and your baby will survive. – Nina
4. “Cutting Out Caffeine Cold Turkey.”
Whoever told you that you could not have caffeine during your pregnancy is wrong! (Unless your doctor is talking to you about your specific health condition, then listen to your doctor.) But if you are a healthy pregnant person, you can have caffeine. Yes, you should limit your caffeine consumption, but you don’t have to give it up completely. That’s just nuts! Experts, including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), recommend keeping your daily caffeine consumption under 200 milligrams to be safe. That’s about the amount of caffeine in one standard cup of coffee. So cheers, mama! You don’t have to say no to caffeine. 😉 – Nina
5. “Being Secretive About My Pregnancy to My Family.”
“I think a big thing I look back on and tell myself, ‘that was silly,’ is how I wasn’t telling people about my pregnancy. I was so secretive around my family before I went to my first doctor’s appointment. I really shouldn’t have been so secretive. They are my family that I see all the time! There’s nothing wrong with them knowing. And if something does happen, you want to be able to lean on them during your time of need.” – KW
6. “Telling the World (Social Media) that I was Pregnant Too Soon”
“I thought to myself, ‘Oh, I’m 12 weeks. I’m in the clear!’ But in reality, you haven’t received any test results back from your doctor yet. If one of your test results comes back with devastating news, you have to consider what you would tell the world (aka social media) if you have already announced your pregnancy to everyone. With my second pregnancy, I decided to wait until I received all of the test results back, and everything was okay (or okay enough that I felt comfortable sharing the news with the world). Then I put it on social media.
I waited because I saw a friend tell her pregnancy news to the world, then her testing came back at 14 weeks, and her baby had Edwards syndrome and didn’t live past 20 weeks. It was such devastating news. She may have still announced it and not have changed a thing, but for me, I would not have wanted to explain to a million ‘acquaintances’ what happened. So I recommend waiting to announce. But do what you feel is best for you.” – KW
7. “Got WAY Too Many Newborn-Sized Diapers.”
“Why did I think I needed a whole box of newborn-sized diapers? No one told me that my baby might not fit into that size! And sure enough, my son was huge when he was born and skipped the newborn size into a size 1 diaper. I had all of these newborn diapers opened and ready to go in his nursery that I couldn’t do anything with. Except make friends diaper cakes. Stupid.” – GF
8. “Getting ALL the Baby Clothes”
“When you find out that you are having a baby girl, you want to get her ALL the clothes! They are just too cute to pass up. Then your parents buy her tons of clothes, and your friends get her clothes, and then your neighbor is giving you baby clothes that her daughter has outgrown. All of a sudden, your baby has more clothes than you do. And she will probably not wear the majority of them or, if she does, you will put it on her just once so you can take a picture of her wearing it and send it to your family member and friend saying, ‘she loves it!’ All you need are some easy to put on and take off onesies for your baby.”
“So don’t register for clothes or buy clothes for your baby because you will get sooo many from the people you know. And your baby will hardly wear them all.” – SD
9. “Not Working Out”
“When I was pregnant, I took it as an excuse to treat myself. I ate what I wanted and relaxed as much as I could. I was growing a baby, after all! I did go to a few prenatal yoga classes, but not enough that would help me. Boy, do I regret that decision. I gained 50 pounds when I was pregnant and am still not back in my pre-pregnancy clothes. (My son just recently turned one.) I should have worked out more when I was pregnant. My friends that worked out during their pregnancies said that their labors were faster, their recovery time after baby was faster, and they were back in their pre-baby clothes faster. I now know better for my next pregnancy.” – DA
10. “Trying to Be Perfect”
“When I was pregnant, I tried to do everything perfectly so that I could be the perfect mother. I tried to read every book, do my research on all things baby, worked out, would not eat anything that you would label ‘unhealthy,’ you name it. I started not enjoying the process because I was so busy trying to be perfect. Now that’s just silly! It’s good to be prepared, be healthy, and all that, but you also have to treat yourself, relax, and enjoy the journey. As they say, there is no way to be a perfect mother but a million ways to be a good one.” – JG
Would you add anything to this list that you want to share with other mamas?