Here it is. Your gold and shiny “plus sign” on a pregnancy test. So, you're pregnant. Now what?
Are you happy? Excited? A little bit overwhelmed? I know that feeling. It’s all natural. A new life is growing inside of you and from this moment your life is going to change. It’s going to be different. And definitely - good different!
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If you’re a first time expectant mama, you’re probably overwhelmed with the idea that so many things have to be done before a baby is born. When I first saw solid 2 lines on a pregnancy test I was stunned. Together with an overpowering feeling of happiness and joy, I was a little nervous, because I didn’t know what to do, where to go, what to buy. There are some many opinions on a pregnancy that it’s hard to figure out what are the essential steps every pregnant woman should do to ensure a healthy pregnancy and a future mother-to-be sanity.
Based on my own experience, I compiled a list of the most important things that you have to do once you get a positive result on your pregnancy test.
1. Find a healthcare provider that can give the best possible service for you and a baby.
I can't stress the importance of finding a good doctor to deliver your baby. Sometimes, friends and relatives may recommend a doctor who may not be a good fit for you. What worked for someone may not work for you. I recommend you to take this step seriously and find the doctor that will fully accommodate your pregnancy wishes and needs. Make sure to read this post: "Delivering A Baby And Questions To Ask Your Doctor Before Birth".
2. Start taking prenatal vitamins.
You want to give your baby the best possible start, so chose your vitamins responsibly, since not all of them are the same. There are many prenatal vitamins that claim to be the best on the market, or recommended by some kind of organization. But in reality, there are certain ingredients in the vitamins that you might want to avoid. I specifically wrote a post on this - Pregnancy Vitamins And Their Dangers Every Expectant Mother Should Know.
3. Keep up with the exercise routine.
Important! Consult your doctor first. If he gives you a green light, go ahead and engage in a light to a moderate pregnancy appropriate physical activity. What’s important here? If you haven’t exercised before you got pregnant, now is not the time to engage in strenuous activities. Choose a low-impact workout like walking or prenatal yoga. And always listen to your body. If you are short of breath or can't finish a sentence, slow down, you might be doing too much.
4. Document your pregnancy.
Nine months will pass like 1 day and you’ll forget every detail about your pregnancy. Whether you had an unbearable morning sickness, or you were flying like a bird, it’s always a good idea to document your feelings month by month. You can either start your own blog, write a diary or purchase one of those cute pregnancy journals, where you can write just about everything you wish.
5. Start using stretch marks cream.
I say “Yes” to this step as soon as possible. Your boobs and belly will grow and it’s very important to hydrate your skin along the way. I started using stretch marks cream on my belly almost from the beginning of my pregnancy, so no stretch marks there. But since breasts usually increase in size almost right after a plus sign on a pregnancy test, there is a good chance stretch marks will haunt you. That’s what happened to me actually. I wish I started using a cream right away. As soon as you find out you're pregnant, get that stretch marks cream as soon as possible.
6. Stock up on maternity outfits.
Once you become pregnant, it’s very tempting to buy those cute outfits for your growing belly. There are a couple of items that in my opinion are essential during pregnancy. These are maternity pants and leggings and a good wireless bra. Zulily and SammyDress have a great selection of pretty yet very affordable maternity clothes.
7. Start a baby registry.
Regardless of your parenting philosophy, there are particular items that you have to buy before the baby is born like a car seat and stroller. It might be worth checking some online reviews before deciding which baby product you want to buy or include in your registry. When I was pregnant with my first child, we bought almost everything on Amazon.com. I love that each product has its own reviews, it makes the whole selection process so much easier.
There are some items, though, that I do not recommend to include in your registry. Make sure to read this post 10 Absolutely Useless Gifts Your Giving To New Moms.
Is there anything missing? What would you add to this list?