Personal Post, Surviving Pregnancy & What Products I am Actually Using
There are a few times in your life when you will literally buy anything that provides comfort. Being pregnant and having a newborn, are two of those times.
If you are anything like me, the single best thing you can ask for in pregnancy is a script for Zofran from the doctor and a decent bucket to puke in. But, I have also found some relief from some other random products.
I am going to share with you some of the things I REALLY REALLY am loving so far this pregnancy and some that I know were insanely helpful to me the last go around. Some of these are affiliate links, and some are little home remedies, recipes, and tips!
Whether you are a first time Mom or not, I hope that maybe you can find some answers for whatever your current pregnancy need or discomfort may be!
Okay, so we might as well go ahead and start with my number one pregnancy complaint: 'morning sickness'. If you follow me on social media or know me, you may be aware that in all three of my pregnancies I have suffered from HG. This current one, however, has by far been the least uncomfortable. That isn't to say there hasn't been a lot of vomiting, but no IV's or ER visits, which is pretty good! Most of the usual tricks and tips DO NOT work for me. Ginger ale and Saltines? Yeah, doesn't matter. Sea bands? Nope. Didn't do a thing. While nothing cured my nausea and I've still been sick, I was pleasantly surprised to find that TWO things did help give me a bit of relief at times this go around.
Ginger Beer + Freshly Grated Ginger + Lime juice - Another photographer actually suggested this to me and I was totally freaking shocked that it helped. Seriously. Bonus points if you put it in some copper cups and treat yourself to a totally Virgin Moscow Mule! I got a 4 pack of non-alcoholic ginger beer at my local grocery store (they kept it in the soda aisle) and some fresh ginger root in the produce section. Grate some up finely into your glass and add a little lime juice for taste. I tried just the ginger beer without the root, and it didn't help really. So I highly suggest adding the fresh ginger!
If you don't already have some adorable copper mugs to keep your drinks cold, I am sharing the ones I own below and I LOVE them. Worth every penny. Great for entertaining too. People love using them when they come over! We do handwash them though, FYI.
Dr. Teals Epsom Salts - You can use any brand, I also tried the Target Up & Up brand and they worked fine, but I've found I prefer Dr. Teals. My favorite scent is also lavender, but yours may depend on how you are adjusting to smells while pregnant. There haven't been a lot of smells I can tolerate, but this was one I actually liked! I pour some of this into the bath and relax and soak for at least 30 minutes. Make sure you are drinking plenty of water (or chomping on ice chips) because this does dehydrate you a bit, but to my understanding, it's the magnesium in the Epsom salts that help. I don't pretend to fully understand the entire science behind it all, and I don't even think it's that complicated, but every time I was feeling super nauseated and I hopped in the bath, I found some relief for awhile at least.
Blanqi Maternity Support Leggings - I had been hearing about this brand way before I got pregnant. I wasn't totally sold, but I quickly grew out of my jeans and knew I would be on the legging train for a while. I bought both a maternity pair and a postpartum support pair, and I like both. They are comfortable and work for me. These are NOT cheap though, and I scored mine half off around black Friday. So look for sales!
Nursing Tanks - I grew out of my bras just as quickly as I grew out of my jeans. I really didn't want to spend a ton of money on maternity bras, so I tried to invest in something that would be comfortable (since I care less and less about looks these days and more about comfort) but that I could also use after the baby was born! Introducing, the nursing tank! I can easily layer these under sweaters for the winter, and then when I have the baby this summer and it's hot, I don't have to wear a bra at all. One stop shop.
Besides Miralax, Stool Softeners and all the other things I am using to just try and keep my body regulated in some way/shape/form/fashion...I found a few items that helped some discomfort.
The Pregnancy Pillow - I am not THAT far yet, but I decided to cave and buy this early this time. I knew I would end up buying it at some point, so why not get it early and use it throughout your pregnancy? This thing seriously saved my life with my son almost 7 years ago, the end gets so rough, but I have been suffering from horrible sciatic nerve pain this time around AND I am a tummy sleeper, so this is helping for the time being.
Smooth Move Organic Tea - I had heard about this tea before, but the first trimester (and the Zofran) led me to desperate times. I was happy that they have a peppermint flavor because this is one of the few tastes I can stomach. I honestly did not expect this tea to work, but I really honestly think it did help! I was pleasantly surprised.
Tingle Head Massager - I figured what the Hell, it's five bucks. If I hate it who cares, I'll toss it. UM, I like it. I have had horrible headaches and migraines (half pregnancy-related half Zofran related) and while this didn't cure anything, it feels good. And that's good enough for me!
The Migraine Hat - I don't know if you knew this was a thing, but when a girl in my HG group suggested this I was like, wait, what?! How did I not know this existed? A wearable hat with ice packs. I don't know about you but ice packs really help my migraines. So, this thing is pretty cool. If you are feeling cheap, I am sure you can get some soft ones and just shove them in a winter hat you have too.
Okay, admittedly, I have not yet actually READ any of these books! So, I can't say if I actually personally like them. BUT, they all came highly recommended and I've got them all just ready and waiting to be devoured.
Hypnobirthing, Ina May's Guide to Childbirth and Mindful Birthing - I PLAN (hope?) to have a natural delivery experience, but we'll see what happens. Some factors are out of my control, but I am doing everything I can to be prepared. Even if you aren't planning a natural childbirth though, it doesn't ever hurt to learn any tips/tricks that help with labor and delivery and of course do some reading and getting more in tune with your body.
At Home Doppler - Whether you think it's crazy or not, I don't really care! Coming fresh off a miscarriage I needed something to help put my mind at ease. I actually couldn't find the babies heartbeat for the first week or two, but I didn't panic because I was warned that might happen. It takes some getting used too, but I am pretty good at it now. I would suggest going on YouTube and seriously watching some videos. What I THOUGHT was the baby at first, I learned was actually just me, and now I can easily tell the difference between the two. But, I had to hear some examples first and get the hang of it. I picked this one because I heard some of the ones that look like little 'mice' or a computer mouse didn't work as well, and it came with a free tube of gel. Pro tip though - if you run out of the gel, you can just use aloe vera!
A Felt Letterboard -I like the Letterfolk boards but found some on Amazon, and it works fine for me! I chose a white one with a pale wood frame. These letters are a total bitch to take it out, but I love having this for pregnancy milestone photos and things. And, I'll use it after the baby comes too!
DIY Belly Butter - So, I am turning into a bit of a crazy person. But, I knew I really wanted to push on being more/as natural as possible before this baby came. And even though baby isn't here, whatever I am putting into my body, and on my skin, is being absorbed into where that baby is. So, no time like the present! I got some things to make my own at home diy belly butter! No petroleum or parabens or synthetic products. No fragrances or anything. My skin is already super sensitive, so it' s a mix of a few products and some essential oils to help with stretch marks. Love or hate essential oils, you can even go look at a jar of Vicks Vapor Rub for babies, and you'll see that over half the ingredients ARE JUST ESSENTIAL OILS. They are in a lot more than you think! And I've found them to be super helpful for my skin in other ways, so why not this one too? I used natural argan butter, unrefined shea butter, organic coconut oil, Vitamin E oil, Rosehip Oil and Geranium Oil in mine. There are a ton of different essential oils that are supposed to help with your skin, so do some research and use what you think will work for you!
I personally am using the Geranium oil from Young Living. It doesn't come in the premium starter kit, but if you don't already have an account with them (you don't have to purchase a monthly minimum or pay any fees) you can snag yours! If you do want to try them out, you can use my enroller ID and then make sure to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to let me know! I am in an awesome group on Facebook with tons of information about oils and how/what/etc. and I usually share a little bit about them over on my personal IG account @laurengraysonlife.
Enroller ID: 2630034