I wouldn’t consider myself to be a pregnancy expert since I’m not a medical doctor or anything like that. I’m only a mom of 3, you know… but I still want to think that I’m pretty experienced in this area. Having had two premature children and one full term (with absolutely no plans of having anymore… so we think), there’s just a little bit of advice that I’d like to share with you. As moms-to-be, we are constantly bombarded with advice- from just about anyone.. Sometimes it’s useful and sometimes it’s not. That being said, here are 10 commonly believed lies about pregnancy along with one incredible truth.
Lie #1- It’s only morning sickness.
This is beyond ridiculous because we all know, full well, that morning sickness does not discriminate between daytime and nighttime. In fact, it could just be that your precious bundle is getting you ready for being up all night. Whatever the case may be, morning sickness happens when it wants to happen.
Lie #2- It’s 9 months.
Lies! A full term pregnancy is actually 10 months. Of course, I didn’t exactly experience this as my children were 24 weeks, 31 weeks, and 37 weeks but still… Full term is 10 months. Not 9. Do not buy into this!
Lie #3- If you’re carrying high, it’s a girl.
Yeah… no. Both of my girls carried low. In fact, I looked like I had a bloated watermelon in my shirt by the time I hit my 6th month with Squeaker. This is no guarantee or indicator of what the gender of your baby will be. The only sure fire way to tell is through ultrasound… and that’s if the baby decides to be cooperative enough.
Lie #4 – Spicy foods trigger labor.
Well… this one, I might debate about but this is generally false. Spicy foods may get your little one more active and feisty and it may give you a pretty bad case of heartburn. But it will not trigger labor.
Lie #5 -You need to eat for 2
No… you don’t need to double your food intake, but you should watch what you eat. Your OB/GYN will advise you as to how much you should eat. And that’s usually based on how much you weighed before pregnancy, your current caloric intake, etc. It will generally be based on your weight gain during pregnancy. Of course, that’s not to say that you should starve yourself, but you don’t need to eat everything in sight.
Lie #6- Stretch marks can be prevented
Yeah, not so much. You may be able to lessen the appearance, but you can’t prevent them from happening in most cases. And really it’s nothing to be ashamed over. You earned those stripes.
Lie #7 – You must sleep on your left side.
It may be a little more beneficial in terms of optimal blood flow, but unless you are strictly directed to do so, you can sleep however you please. Granted, sleeping on your back or belly might be a bit uncomfortable after awhile but you aren’t restricted to just sleeping on your left side. And let’s be honest here- once you get to a certain point in your pregnancy; you’ll just be grateful to sleep wherever you can.
Lie #8- No caffeine while pregnant
It would be advisable to cut back on caffeine, but you don’t have to give it up entirely. Just be aware that drinking too much caffeine can lead to preterm labor. However, one cup a day won’t do too much harm. When in doubt, check with your OB/GYN.
Lie #9 – No flying during the third trimester
Truth about this is that most airlines just don’t want to take a risk if you happen to go into labor. But, it’s actually okay to be on an airplane.
Lie #10 – Do not dye your hair.
I’m really not sure how this one came about but guess what- it’s false! You can safely dye your hair while you’re pregnant.
So now that we’ve gotten those 10 commonly believed lies about pregnancy out of the way, let’s get to that one truth:
It will be worth it.
No matter how much morning sickness (or not) that you go through. No matter how many sleepless nights you have from heartburn, cravings, or your little bundle of joy kicking you everywhere- it will be worth it. Once you have your precious baby in your arms, trust me, everything that you and your incredibly body went through is worth it.
Pregnancy, for me, was one of the more enjoyable times of my life. Not 100% of the time, but still. I do miss some aspects of being pregnant and knowing that you are going to be responsible for another human being is an incredibly daunting task. As a mom, you will make mistakes.
It happens to us all.
But in the time leading up to the glorious arrival of your little one, know this- whatever may lie ahead… You can do it!