Tuesday, September 24, 2013

How Do Pregnancies Differ - Guest post from Wondermom Wannabe

Guess what I'm doing today? You got it. Tearing apart my house. Today I'd like to welcome Corinne from Wondermom Wannabe. She shares some tips on how pregnancies are different, especially for the same mama! After all, each of our kids are unique, right? I can definitely tell there are quite a few differences between my second pregnancy versus my first - mostly hitting milestones sooner (probably because I know what to look for).

How Do Pregnancies Differ?

I remember the joy, fear, and anxiety I felt when I found out I was pregnant with my first child. Fortunately, that first pregnancy ended up being a cakewalk. Aside from being a little tired during first trimester and a little clumsy during second semester, I felt healthier than I had in years and was spared any aches and pains. In contrast, labor and delivery was a 3-day (yes, 3 DAYS!) nightmare. Still, 9 months of smooth sailing seemed like a fair trade for a few days of discomfort so a year later I was ready to try again.

That’s when I learned something I think every expectant mother should know. Every pregnancy is different. I don’t just mean that your pregnancy experience will be different than mine. I mean that EVERY pregnancy is different. That cakewalk I enjoyed during my first trip towards motherhood did not establish itself as a pattern. I won’t bore you with the details of each of my pregnancies, but I will highlight some key points that I wish someone had shared with me before I finally figured things out on my own sometime during my fourth pregnancy.
  1. Don’t get rid of your “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” book after you’ve successfully delivered your first child. If you experience strange symptoms during subsequent pregnancies that didn’t occur your first go-round, it will give you peace of mind before you make it to your next scheduled OB appointment to know that it’s a typical pregnancy symptom.
  2. Things happen sooner the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th time around. I fondly remember wearing my normal clothes into second semester when I was pregnant with my first child. Imagine my surprise when I had to pull them out just one month after I discovered I was pregnant with my daughter. Of course this was nothing compared to the fact that I suspected my third pregnancy when I looked down and noticed a small bulge in my stomach two days after my period failed to arrive. My doctor explained that my uterus was like a balloon. The first time you blow it up, it takes some time and effort but after it’s been inflated once, it’s MUCH easier to stretch out again.
  3. Miscarriages are common. I miscarried my second pregnancy. At first I was confused because I had already delivered a healthy child and didn’t understand how my system had broken afterwards. 20% of pregnancies end in miscarriage (or 1 in every 5 pregnancies). Although some miscarriages are the result of health issues with the mother, the point is that you shouldn’t jump to that conclusion and cause yourself undue stress.
  4. If you develop a strange ache, skin change, hair loss, or really any physical change during pregnancy, chances are your changing hormones are to blame for your physical ailments. I developed carpal tunnel syndrome during my second pregnancy due to the extra fluid coursing through my veins. I’m not saying you should ignore serious pains or wildly erratic symptoms. However, your first call should be to your OB (if it’s not an emergency room level problem). Also, it’s much easier to cope with the mysterious mustache you have suddenly grown when you know you’ll only have to wax it away for a few months, rather than emptying your future child’s college fund to pay for laser hair removal that is most likely unwarranted.
  5. Pregnancy is a lot harder after you already have kids. I don’t mean that each pregnancy gets harder. It’s just that during your first pregnancy, you only have yourself to take care of. After that, you have someone else whose needs you have to attend to and being pregnant and taking care of a child is exhausting. So, even if you were able to work full-time, take care of all the household chores, exercise every day, and do some charity work in your free time during pregnancy number one, be a little cautious about over-committing yourself during subsequent pregnancies.
Corinne Schmitt is a mom of four wonderful kids ranging in age from 6 to 16 and wife to a U.S. Marine. She blogs at Wondermom Wannabe about how to juggle all the responsibilities of being a wife and mother and how to cope with the stress of trying to do it all.

Did you notice a difference between your pregnancies?
Want to write for The Pierogie Mama? Email me!

1 comment:

  1. Both of my pregnancies were very different and I had a boy and a girl.



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