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Saturday, 8 December 2018

Pregnancy Q&A with Jen Marino Photography






So I took to Instagram stories to see if you had any questions around pregnancy, and turns out there were quite a few! I've summarised the most commonly asked questions, so I hope I do it justice for you (I've tried to be as detailed as possible!) and if you're a first time mama to be, I hope it might help you in some way!

Did I want a boy?
ALWAYS. No gender disappointment for me. If you caught our gender reveal video you'd have seen how happy it made me. I always knew! I just knew he was a he. We would love a little girl one day, but if I had a army of little boys, I'd be happy.


How long did it take you to get pregnant?
To be totally truthful, since Todd and I moved into our home in 2014, I hadn't actually been on contraception, we weren't doing all that we could to try (apart from the obvious) we just had a very relaxed attitude towards things and thought "If it happened, that would be great, let's not rush it". When the wedding was approaching (2017) we had a chat about it and decided we should start trying properly. I think you have to have informed your GP and then have been trying a year before they give you any support. So I downloaded the app "Flo" started tracking EVERYTHING, I was on Slimming World to make my body as healthy as it could be, taking supplements and then in the March we fell pregnant (found out in the April). So I'd say it took 8 months of serious trying, if that is even a thing?

How do you not look like shit pregnant?
This made me laugh so much, please don't be under ANY impression that I haven't had my days on the sofa, with a McDonalds, Todd's teddy bear jumper, yesterday's makeup and bags bigger than IKEA under my insomnia ridden eye balls. You are bound (and totally entitled) to feel and look your absolute worst during pregnancy - it's a bloody tiring and hard gig so don't ever be hard on yourself if all you can manage to do is open your eyes on those days. I am just one of those people, that if I feel like crap, I put on a full face of makeup, wear something nice and get through a to do list. If I look like a total trollop, I just can't be productive and will feel sorry for myself. So when and if you can, get up and eat nice food, make an effort with your appearance, and your day might just be a bit better.



How did you prepare for a pregnancy?
I used ovulation apps, was on the Slimming World diet to make sure I was healthy on the inside, I took Pregnacare tablets and used ovulation sticks to ensure the apps were giving us correct windows!

Are you scared about childbirth?
As a first time Mum, I'd say I'm anxious, I'm not scared. How can I be scared to do something that as women, we are built to do? And as a first time Mum, how can I be scared of something that I've no idea how it'll feel? Every time someone asks me this question I say to them, it's not an experience you can test - if you wanted a tattoo you can go down the shop and get them to do a few strokes and if you're not up for it then see ya later, and you know how it feels. Can't really do that with childbirth, once they are in, they have to come out one way or the other, being scared isn't going to help any, but I'd say it's totally natural to feel nervous/anxious.



When did you get a bump?
My bump didn't come until half way through the second trimester, before that it was just bloaty jelly belly.

Has pregnancy had an impact on your relationship/ has your relationship changed/ are you worried your relationship will be different?
Hmm, yes for the better. We are much more tolerant of each other and we listen to each other a lot more. It's a massive learning curve and with hormones in the mix it can be super difficult at times. I'm not worried about the dynamics being different as we have been together over 6 years now, we've done loads together and still plan to. It is what you make it at the end of the day and you're in control of your relationship. Do be totally transparent with each other though, I can't count the amount of times Todd has asked me to simply tell him what is wrong, what can he do, is everything ok etc.



What's hypnobirthing and is it helping?
It's basically a metaphorical toolbox, it teaches you about birth, which is important as I think all we really know about birth is what we are conditioned with, from TV programmes, women's horror stories etc. So it teaches you the science behind birth and about your body, it gives you techniques to stay calm and how to breathe, positive affirmations and positive birth stories that reassure you that birth isn't the worst thing in the world and basically just re evaluates your mind set. I can't say if it has helped me just yet, I'll let you know, but certainly from an anxiety point of view, it helps me every day with tips and tricks I've learnt. I practice The Positive Birth Company - (I'd 100% recommend to anyone who has a busy life style / can't make classes and can't afford the 1:1 cost!)

How have you found dressing your bump / Where have you found to have done the best maternity clothes?
Would anyone be in utter disbelief if I said ASOS, come on, we all know I'm an addict! I've totally loved having a bump and dressing it, flaunt it I say! It's hard when you're at the "is she fat or pregnant?" stage so I'd say hold off buying because you don't become pregnant and just get massive (which I totally thought is how it worked!) All you need is: 1 pair of leggins, 2 pairs of jeans and some floaty dresses (skater dresses are my go to, they fall perfectly over bump) and as I've been pregnant during winter I've just sized up on jumpers and tops or bought a few mat jumpers. My favourite combo is, a vest top, a chunky knit cardigan, jeans and boots. TREAT YOUR DAMN SELF! Seriously, if it isn't bad enough feeling like absolute you know what some days, you don't want to add "Wtf do I wear today" into the mix, that's a recipe for a hormonal rage let me tell you. By month 4, order some bits! Oh and undies? - H&M!



Are you worried about your post baby body?
No. Surprisingly! Pre pregnancy I was always so caught up about appearance. I'm amazed at my body, totally amazed that it's grown life and that my son is in there and my body has done that?! Let alone when we get to the stage of getting him out, I think if anything I've just learnt how to appreciate it and not be so hard on myself. I've had a few wobbles whilst pregnant though, it does take some getting used to the amount of changes that can happen to your body. I have been seriously lucky though and most the weight has gone to my cheeks, I'm all face!

When did you first feel him kick?
I first felt a kick about 20 weeks, like a proper set of movements. Before it just feels a bit fluttery and you're not sure if it's a fart brewing or a baby moving.



Have there been things you've disliked about pregnancy?
Two things, first being that everyone treats you as though you're disabled and second when I've had two episodes of him not moving for 24 hours. Going to the assessment unit to be hooked up to the machine to see if he's okay, was so scary! I've had messages from midwives on Instagram though to say to ALWAYS go, if you're ever concerned, they'd prefer it to be a good outcome than you waiting too long and it being a bad one.

His name?
We decided to not share his name because it's been one we've always wanted and imagined our baby to have, pre pregnancy aswell. So I think that because EVERYONE is pregnant with boys at the moment we just wanted to keep it secret incase it was taken by anyone local. Also it's been lovely relating to him as his name, because he seems more real and I feel like I just know him already?



What would you have called him if he were a she?

Florence, Penelope, Peyton, Delilah, Ava, Gracie - are a few of my favourite girl names!

What would you do differently next time?
If I had the same "text book" pregnancy, I'd have stayed at work an extra week. I'm due on the 9th and I left work for a week and 3 days annual leave on the 26th November before starting official mat leave on the 6th. Obviously anything could have happened, but I feel like I've still got a lot of go left in me and could've left it later. Massage - I'd have treated myself to more, I think I've grown this baby, largely in my back, so could've done with some more massages. Lastly, I would've been more selfish, I'm such a people pleaser and throughout pregnancy didn't always put myself first, but next time I'll be more "selfish" and do what I want instead of jumping to people's assistance too quickly.


Love, Rey ( & Gibson) x


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