Pregnancy can be quite a herculian task but the plus side is that you get to reap the best reward at the end of it all.

It is not to say, of course, that the nine months my baby had been in my tummy was a big burden. I didn’t even notice the days and the months pass by. I started really taking care of myself at five months (entering third trimester). But I guess I was also one of those lucky women whose pregnancy isn’t high risk.

The Pregnancy Checklist (Borrowed)

The Pregnancy Checklist (Borrowed)

What are the most important things being monitored when you are pregnant?

Weight
According to the experts, women with average weight are to gain about 25 to 35 pounds. Those who are underweight, 28 to 40, and those who are overweight, only around 15 to 25 pounds. About two to four pounds should be gained during the first trimester and for the remaining, a pound a week should be best. Those expecting twins may need to gain about 35 to 45 pounds or about 1 1/2 pounds a week starting on the second trimester.

The first three months of my pregnancy went by unnoticed and I don’t think I gained weight at all. Or at least, it was just negligible. During the fourth and fifth months (even until the sixth), I had to go through long hours at the office so I think I lost some weight. During my first prenatal visit, I was only about 119 pounds but already with a five/six-month-old baby in the tummy.

The remaining months after that, I started to gain steadily – about a pound a week. There was one month where I gained about six pounds and I got alarmed. I didn’t want to be too heavy, not for aesthetic reasons but because big babies are hard to deliver. Most women I know told me to just keep the baby small in my tummy and then let her grow big until after she is out.

Milk and Vitamins
The doctor asked me during my first visit ever if I was drinking milk or taking any prenatal supplements – I wasn’t. So, she gave me a few samples and I drank them everyday. Haha. Aside from EnfaMama (which I later changed to Anmum), I was also taking Obimin (vitamins and minerals) and (Iron and Multivitamins). After starting out double dose vitamins and milk, I noticed my appetite escalating all too quickly. I had a knack for sugary stuff which I knew I had to cut down if I didn’t want to gain too much weight. My mom told me to skip the vitamins every other day – or the milk – I cannot remember. I was also given Calciumade (Calcium supplements) later on.

Tummy Size
Among the funny stories I would hear about pregnancy is that their tummies often become too big that it becomes hard for them to even see their feet (while standing and without a mirror in front, of course). Mine wasn’t too big. In fact, I got to wear my skinny jeans up to about five months. Because it took a long time for me to announce my pregnancy, it was only up to about six months that I decided to wear maternity clothes or, well, dresses. My friend encouraged me to wear one – she said if she became pregnant, she would always make sure that she looked good with the dresses and all. Once in a while after that, I would feel hot and sexy wearing my dresses. Haha. I never rarely wear dresses pre-pregnancy.

Blood Pressure
As mentioned, I was never one to join the high-risk group so my blood pressure kept at normal levels, usually playing around 110/80 or 120/80. I hear stories about pregnant women whose blood pressure skyrockets and it gets a little scary, actually, for first-time (and young) moms like me.

Fetal Heart Tones
The first time I ever heard the little heartbeat, it was crazy. I wasn’t sure how I felt exactly: ecstatic or sad (because the baby was well, not unwanted but unplanned). At home, the partner and I would try to listen to the baby’s heartbeat. There were times, at night, when I would get so paranoid. My partner works night shifts so I’m usually left sleeping by myself. During waking moments, I would try to locate the baby’s heartbeat and when I couldn’t find it right away, I would start to panic.
The same thing also happened during the last prenatal checkup I went to. The doctor had a hard time locating the heartbeat even with that little gadget she uses to probe around my tummy. The baby had turned, obviously, and her back was towards the doctor (she was already facing my back). Eventually it was found and, boy, was I relieved! How I wish I had bought that little thingamajig OBs have. Haha.

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