This post has all the pregnancy things. TIPS, TRICKS, ESSENTIAL OILS, and all the must haves. Plus I talk high risk pregnancy info and incompetent cervix stuff too. So this Pregnancy Guide has everything and I hope it blesses you in any way you need!
General Feelings, Cravings and Symptoms
I’m at 30 weeks and I’m just now getting around to writing this. I'm also working on the second and third trimester too. This is my Pregnancy Guide. With all the Tips, Tricks, Oils and Must Haves for the First Trimester.
The first trimester was a blur - a blur of nausea, snacking and sleeping. My biggest symptoms were nausea, but just briefly in the morning and then whenever I got hungry. Pretzels or Pickled anything would help if I got too hungry and everything else just made me sick. And I was exhausted, like all the time. My husband also was a close contact to someone who had Covid, so on top of that, I was solo parenting for a week, with a toddler that was potty training. Let’s just say it was a few of those - sleep in mom’s bed, so mom can sleep too. Watch way too much Paw Patrol and Octonauts and eat cereal for dinner kind of weeks.
And if you didn’t know, or this is the first blog post of mine you’ve read, this was also our first pregnancy after our loss of our sweet angel, Ezra. You can read about my miscarriage HERE. I also shared about the feelings and stuff that came along with a pregnancy after loss, and how this pregnancy has been different in terms of being high risk and with my incompetent cervix. You can read those HERE and HERE.
Within the first trimester, I had a lot of anxiety. A lot of fear. It really stopped me from enjoying the beginning - if that would have been possible despite the usual symptoms. It prevented me from being excited or joyful. I mean obviously I was excited for our baby, but the thought of anything happening and going through all that again, I just didn’t want to get attached. These feelings are common with pregnancies after loss. Not wanting to get attached, fear of losing another baby, anxiety.
So I had my dating ultrasound around 7 weeks. After that, around 10-11 weeks I had some bleeding and my worst fears were coming true, or so that is where I first jumped too. Bleeding is common in the first trimester - as long as it’s not the filling pads kind. And it wasn’t, so I tried putting it off. But again, it crippled me for days. I just wanted to sleep and cry and it’s hard to do that with a toddler and a husband under isolation. So I went to the ER, they checked out everything - specifically my cervix because that was the problem last time. They booked me in for another ultrasound to double check everything and see if they should do an emergency cerclage - which was scheduled for 12 weeks and 1 day - which was only a week away.
Things ended up being just fine and a week later I went in for surgery. After surgery, I freaked out because the feelings of everything were just so much. I thought the stitch didn’t hold. I was cramping and everything was an odd feeling. So I ended up back in the ER. After my doctor reassured me and told me everything was fine - it looked good and I had follow ups coming up, I was finally able to relax.
It was the longest 8 weeks of my life, from the moment the test turned positive to about a week after my surgery. The emotions, the hormones, the ER visits and the surgery. But we got through and as the second trimester started I definitely started to feel much better all around!
Tips and Tricks
Each pregnancy is different. And each person is different. What works for me, might not work for you. Something that works for you might have not worked for me. It's all relative, but I'll share anyways just in case it happens to work for you, and I want to help as much as I can! <3 Pregnancy is a beautiful thing, but that doesn't mean it's all sunshine and glowing. It's hard, growing a human is a lot of work. Give yourself grace, ask for help, and don't for a second believe that you have to be all happy at all times. If you don't love being pregnant that is so okay! I have a love hate relationship. If babe is kicking away and is all cute and everything - and you ask me, I love being pregnant. End of the day and my hips hurt and I'm bloated and itchy - I really strongly don't like being pregnant!
- So my biggest tip for the first trimester - don't let yourself get hungry. That's when the nausea will settle in.
- Take your prenatal vitamins! Super important - plus your B vitamins will help with energy!
- Try and get out for some fresh air and exercise! It'll help with the exhaustion. But I get it if it's the last thing you want to do!
- Water and Fibre are your best friend!! Growing a baby and those hormones wreak havoc on that digestive system!
High Risk + Incompetent Cervix (IC)
And for my high risk pregnant mamas! DO NOT BE AFRAID TO ASK ALL THE QUESTIONS AND STAND UP FOR HOW YOU FEEL AND ALL THE THINGS.
This was huge for me. Making sure I knew when my surgery was. When the earliest I could get it. Ultrasounds to keep an eye on things until my surgery. ADVOCATE for yourself and your baby because no one else will.
Incompetent Cervix mama's - cerclages are usually put in around 14-16 weeks. I got mine at 12. So if you want it early, talk to your doctor. They probably won't do it before unless you've lossed a babe before 12 weeks due to your cervix.
As you may know - if you've been here a while. I love essential oils, and during my pregnancies especially! I first started using oils with my first pregnancy so I can’t say what the difference would be without it. But I do know that for the week before my surgery I couldn’t use them and I noticed a huge difference.
Obviously there are a lot of questions around it and whether it’s safe. I found the best resource has been this Betsy Bosom Book. And google - always do your research, google makes it super easy! But i’ll share my routine/some of the favorite ones I used.
Favorite Single Oils
Peppermint - the best oil for nausea. I would keep a bottle by my bed to sniff every time I started to get nauseous. I also have a roller that I would roll on my wrists.
**Be cautious of peppermint - it can be a blood thinner. I stopped using it 3 weeks before my surgery.**
Progessence Plus - I used this one for the crazy hormones, and it’s a natural source of progesterone - which is a huge important hormone for the beginning of pregnancy. Some people use it all the way through. I only used it in my first trimester! And then I’ll take to the hospital with me after babe is born and start using it right away to help with those hormones afterwards.
Gentle Baby - A MUST! It's so soothing and I just love the smell! Great for the belly bump, for sleep and all the things!
Stressaway - Another huge one, especially for me this time around. It just helps calm those emotions. And just helped me stay relaxed.
En-Er-gee - A great natural energy booster - mostly diffused this one, as there are a few oils in there that are on the caution list.
Oils to Avoid or be Cautious of
*oils in blends are at different concentrations and therefore don't pose as big of risk
*diffusing also doesn't pose as big of risk as applying the oil topically
Do some research and be cautious of the oils you do apply. Again the Betsy Bosom book was a great resource.
- Clary Sage is the biggest oil to avoid
- It can bring on contractions, so people just avoid it all together until about 37 weeks.
- Oils with high in methyl salicylate, can act as blood thinner and therefore aren't safest to use during pregnancy
First Trimester Recipes
- Emotion Roller
- For all those crazy emotions
- Valor, Joy, Orange, White Angelica
- 10 drops each in a 10 ml roller bottle
- Roll over heart, wrists, behind ears and be careful of being in the sun afterwards.
- Belly Bump/Mama Roller
- A soothing roller for the bump (helps with stretch marks too)
- Lavender, Frankincense, Gentle Baby
- Tummy Roller
- Perfect for upset stomachs, heartburn, bloating - all the tummy things
- Peppermint and Digize
For me - not pregnancy specific, but I had a grief roller that was a huge deal for me with the feelings I was still processing after our loss.
Favorite Diffuser Blends
En-er-gee and Lime - kept me going! As well as a little mood booster. If I was feeling drowsy I’d take a sniff of En-er-gee from the bottle.
Gentle Baby - a few drops of this in the diffuser at night helped me sleep despite the anxiety.
You can keep up with more oily goodness on my wellness instagram account - courageouslynavigatingoils. I share more there about the day to day oils and the whole lifestyle! I have guides and highlights on both my wellness page and my Instagram on all things oils.
Favorite Maternity Clothes
The biggest change between my first pregnancy and this one was the fact that my “normal” clothes didn’t fit me for as long as they did the first time. I found a few maternity pieces that were perfect for the first trimester - you know, the part when the bump wasn’t big enough to hold onto a band but too big for regular jeans! I’ll share a few of my first trimester favorites below.
Old Navy Maternity Jeans and Leggings
These were great because they fit pretty close to pre-pregnant size, minus the belly bands - they wouldn't stay up because I didn't have much belly at the time. The leggings were nice because they were tight enough it stayed up, including the band. Towards the end of the second trimester they stopped fitting - I found they didn't stretch too much and didn't keep "growing" with me.
Old Navy Basics
Well that wraps up the first trimester!
I hope this guide can offer you some insight to that first trimester. Some symptoms to expect, cravings you might have, products and other must haves to survive that first 12 weeks and a little story to take you with me through my pregnancy. For my oily mama's - hope these recipes help you! If you don't have oils and want to try please reach out! I'd love to help you get some, or answer any questions, or just chat about them!
If you've got a favorite product or weird symptom or craving - please share it below for other mama's to read! It's a crazy 9 months of change and having other's share their tips and tricks can make a world of difference!