This is in honor of a sweet friend who is carrying her first. Good luck and enjoy this special time!

Things I wish I had known about pregnancy:

That when people say “sleep all you can now”…they mean it. I never quite found time to nap often. Then I hit the can’t sleep at night phase. Then I went in to labor at 2:00 am. Then I breastfed and took care of all night time feedings. Even when K starting sleeping through the night, I sometimes still got up to pump in the middle of the night, and my morning routine now starts at 5:15…unless he gets up earlier. Could I have stockpiled sleep so I would be better rested now? No. But I am jealous of the pregnant gal who not only had an excuse to snooze, but had plenty of time to do so and just didn’t realize it.

That losing control over when you sleep, eat, and pee because of this special new guest…is excellent practice for the flexibility in your life that will soon be required.

That you should love your prepregnancy/first trimester body. You may never see it again.

That you should also love your pregnancy body. It’s a special time, and carrying life is a beautiful thing. Also…when else can you be fat and have people say “awww”?

That everyone knows everything about pregnancy, and wants to tell you. (Guilty!) You know you can’t sleep on your back, right? Have you been talking to your baby? Should you be eating that? Argh! It can be overwhelming! Just know that those busy bees are mamas who can’t help but try to mother you through this process too. They mean well, even if they drive you nuts.

That eating “for two”…while fun at the time…is a bad idea. You don’t actually need 4,000 calories, no matter how irresistible cheese fries and root beer floats become.

That you WILL be ok, as will your baby. I googled, read, and wondered way too much. Pregnancy is stressful enough without having a panic fit when someone scolds you for eating a ham sandwich once, or for drinking something with yellow 5 in it. What? You’re probably just glad to find something that doesn’t make you heave! Make educated decisions, and do your best. Then try to relax a little!

That you can love someone so much it hurts, before you even meet them.

That you’ll let go of any privacy issues/inhibitions you have. Anyone who wants to touch your belly will. You’ll find yourself discussing bodily functions with complete strangers. You’ll be “checked” and on display more than any of us care to think about. Then the baby arrives, and you’ll find yourself nursing in front of people when you swore you never would, and much to the dismay of anyone who has to listen to you…you’ll be obsessed with poop. It happens to the best of us.

That staring at your belly will become the most fascinating experience you’ve ever had. And despite the fact that those sweet kicks eventually become painful at times, and even keep you up at night…you’ll miss that feeling.

That you should have never said “My kid won’t…” You don’t know. He just might. I didn’t plan for my kid to use a pacifier. Nor did I think we would leave the house with dried boogers, return home with no pants due to a diaper failure, borrow a bottle from a cousin at a restaurant, let him stare at the light box (ok, TV) so I can pee in peace. And we still have a long way to go! My guess is the parent of that kid throwing a tantrum in aisle 2 used to judge the bad kids in the grocery store too. Don’t judge. Don’t say never. Just wait…your day in aisle 2 is coming.

That 9 months can last 2 years.

And most importantly…that it’s totally worth it. Whatever your “cons” are…excessive weight gain, sleepless nights, swollen feet, puffy face, hemorrhoids, weird diet restrictions, stretch marks…or any combination thereof…it’s absolutely without a doubt worth it. Worth it when you feel those tiny flutters for the first time. Worth it when you see that healthy growing baby on the ultrasound, and hear that beautiful heart beat. Worth it…when you finally get to meet the special invader, and look in to the eyes of your first, true love.