1. Pregnancy books - As we had just got the BFP (big fat positive), we headed to a bookstore. I still remember when another young mother asked me if I was pregnant, I thought, "What?!? Can you tell already, we haven't even told our parents!!!". But I assume it was pretty obvious since we were both standing totally clueless, looking at the pregnancy section. Either way, she suggested Your Pregnancy Week by Week, and we both read this book as we journeyed along.
2. Ginger - ginger chews, ginger supplements and ginger snaps. They are a savior for morning sickness. Along with sprite and timing meals so you are eating every couple of hours...hmmm, maybe that explains some the major weight gain!
3. Long tank tops - I got away with wearing so many non-maternity shirts by wearing those built in bra tanks underneath everything. Plus, once you are super huge, it adds another layer so your belly button doesn't stick out!!
4. Chapstick - Ok, this isn't just a pregnancy obsession. For those of you that know me, I have been obsessed with chapstick...particularily this brand for many many years. But I think its needed even more during the 9 (really 10) months.
5. Too Shea Body Butter (from Bath and Body Works) - I know people will tell you that there really isn't anything you can do for stretch marks (except for cross your fingers and pray to the big man) but either way, I use this EVERY NIGHT on my belly and back...and so far so good! Plus, it just feels great. However, I must admit I feel like I'm greasing up a pig at times.
6. A SENSE OF HUMOR - as mentioned above, the feeling of greasing up a pig is something that will happen. And I think you definitely need to have a sense of humor through out all of this. Not to mention to laugh off all the comments like, "Wow, are you sure you aren't having twins?", "Whoa, got a big boy don't we." "March 20th, wow that seems like forever!" "Do ______ now because you will never be able to again." And my favorite - "This is really going to change your life". Really??? I thought the baby could just hang with Callaway in her kennel when we leave. :)
7. More lotion - seriously, this baby just dries out my skin. And so I advice to lather it up, every day, through out the day. And because certain smells may bother you from time to time, I say go for the classic unscented kind.
8. Wedge Pillow - it may be shaped like a giant piece of cheese (mmmm, cheese...), but it has really helped me get through the nights. You simply just wedge it under the large-greased-up-like-a-pig belly for added support. Otherwise, laying on your side (which at this point is the ONLY option) can be quite painful and uncomfortable without it.
8. More Pillows - Seriously, I sometimes lose where Ryan even is with the many pillows that I have. I sleep with a total of 5.
9. Flat, comfortable shoes - I tried to pull off the heels for a while and then just realized, ya know...with a belly like this, no one is really looking at my feet. And now that I think about , I haven't seen my feet in months! Shoe tip #2: Steer clear of shoes that tie towards the home stretch. Trust me, you will either embarrass yourself or possibly injure something (been there done both).
10. More Toilet Paper - Don't worry, this isn't too much information for you. But really ladies, after getting up to go to the bathroom every hour to two hours (or even more once the baby starts to use your bladder as a punching bag)...you will definitely go through much more toilet paper than you ever did before. I am even convinced now that I am home every day and night that our water bill has gone up from all the flushes.
11. TheBump.com - Love this website. Not only do they provide a checklist of items to be completed (which kept me on track to do things like interview pediatricians, start fetal kicks count, wash baby clothes, and so much more). But there are also many message boards where you can just find support, vent, and something to laugh at.
12. Tum tum tum tum....TUMS - Yes, heartburn sucks. Keep these chewables next to your bed!
13. Girlfriends - Between great advice from some and just ears to listen from most, my girlfriends have really been there for me through all of this. I know they are just a phone call, email, or visit away to make me feel better and bring me back to reality. I think Ryan realized this too after a major hormonal rage that seemed to go away after talking to Tori. After I hung up, he said, "Let's just keep Tori and your girls all on speed dial." So Thanks, you girls are the best!!
14. Motherly Advice - My Mom has been there for me since day one (well obviously since my day one, but you know what I mean!). From helping me stay realistic, listening to my breakdowns and complaints, many trips to Motherhood and Babies R Us, and just sending her love all the time...I don't know what I would have done without her. The rest of our family members have also been so incredibly supportive as well. They are all so excited about this baby that it helps the hard days (like day 20 of bed rest) not seem so bad and makes me remember what this is all for.
15. The Ry Guy - The Most Amazing Husband EVER - Seriously, Ryan has been quite the rock through all of this. Especially now, when I can't even go to the store (yes, he even made trips to Target, Macy's, Ulta and Bath & Body Works last weekend...what a man!!). But he has learned to laugh on the inside when I am raging about one thing (the lack of heat in our house) or crying about another (Joe Paterno). He has shown so much love and excitement during this process that there isn't a doubt in my mind on what a great Dad he is going to be and how much he really does love me with all his heart. Awwww :) So maybe I numbered this all wrong, because he is by far the number one pregnancy must have!