I had a
pretty really rough first trimester and basically became a nauseated hermit. Morning sickness? Try all-day-all-night-all-the-time-omg sickness. Lovely. I know everyone is different but wow I had no idea one option was to feel like I was stuck on a ship on the rough seas with nothing but my toilet to keep me company for days on end. I’ll just leave the description at that to avoid making you queasy. The really rough stuff lasted about 4 weeks. But, I pulled through thanks to some very important essentials.
While every pregnancy is different, here’s what I recommend having on hand to get through the 1st trimester!
- Comfy leggings and loose shirts
Especially a few weeks in, this was a major necessity. Everything felt sore – especially the “ladies” (…I’m talking about boobs) and loose clothing made it bearable. I pulled myself into “real” pants (stretchy jeans, let’s be honest) a handful of times. The rest of the days were spent in leggings, dresses and loose tops.
I kept a water bottle by my side 24/7. When water was hard to keep down, my midwife suggested trying everything from flavored sparkling water to sports drinks. Even watery fruits and soups can be good. Staying super hydrated helped me feel better, or at least made the tolerable times last longer between awful ones. What really truly worked for me, though? Coconut water, friends. My favorite brand is Amy & Brian Coconut Juice. It’s well worth the cost, trust me. If you don’t like the flavor of coconut water, you can add a little juice (though pregnant women should avoid pineapple juice, apparently.) I just know that compared with any other liquid, I perked up and felt way more like myself after downing some liquified coconuts. Is that what coconut water is? Who cares, it was a miracle for me.
Peppermint tea, candies and mints (VerMints are a favorite) always went down easy. Mmmm. I’m not sure they actually soothed my tumultuous stomach but it seemed like they had a positive effect on my mood. I kept on going back time and time again, so that says something. For reference, almost *everything else* I ate went on the “oh god I never want to eat that again ever” list.
- B6 and Unisom
Yup. Check with your doctor or midwife but this is a tried-and-true (and safe) treatment for nausea. My husband found this morning sickness remedy by consulting Dr. Google, and then we consulted a real medical professional to confirm. We could only find 100mg tablets of B6 so I was advised to cut them in quarters. Again, consult your doc but most sources say that 25 – 50 mg of B6 is the max you should take. This “cocktail” gave me some relief, so I give it an A+. I wish I’d known about this from the start, but it definitely helped me through the last couple weeks of pukey-land.
Oral health is really important when you’re pregnant so a good toothbrush is a MUST. I am in love (yeah, it’s a strong relationship) with my Preserve soft toothbrush. Even when it was hard for me to get to the bathroom to do anything besides stand over the toilet, I forced myself to brush my teeth a few times a day. This brush is shaped perfectly to reach all of your teeth and the bristles are the right amount of soft. Some women can get really sore gums during pregnancy. Even if you’re not pregnant but you’ve been known to “over brush” to the detriment of your gums, I highly recommend this brush.
Maybe it’s just me, but my face/body started to get really dry during the first trimester so I needed to slather on the moisture! Perhaps this goes along with the “hydration” point listed above. I love this “Just Right Daily Moisturizer” from VeriaID for all over my face and neck. I added a bit of this uber-thick Jason Vitamin E cream to super-dry spots on my face. Weird dry patches showed up around my eyebrows and under my eyes. And I thankfully had a sample of NovaKera cream on hand, which was incredible (I mean, wowza) for keeping my hands and feet super lovely and soft.
- Supportive significant other (and family/friends)
This is key. My husband was lovely about grabbing miscellaneous stuff (read: totally random food I thought I might be able to stomach) for me from the store every day and digging out stacks of old movies for me to half-watch in my miserable-ness. He was also good at just being there for me, talking with me, and listening to me b*tch about my symptoms. My family and close friends (ones that I told I was pregnant early on) were so great about checking in on me and making me feel loved. A good support system is super important when you have a new baby, I hear, so I hope this was a nice little glimpse at my future ;)
Also, a note on food: I typically eat a mostly paleo, grain-free diet but I added in rice and corn (and gluten-free bread), and some dairy (cheese and greek yogurt) during this time. Eating a little bit of something usually made me feel better, but after a while pretty much only brown rice cakes and certain fruits were on the “yes” list. Veggies and protein (besides cheese on occasion) were out. Go ahead and try whatever comes to mind during your morning sickness – random stuff, junk food, comfort food (grilled cheese, hello!) – but what ended up working for me was to keep it simple. Fruit (melons, strawberries, and oh so many bananas), Nut Thins (crackers made from almonds and some rice flour), and rice cakes were bo-ring, yes, but I kept them down and they perked me up.
I was tempted like everyone to seek comfort food as a way to find some damn pleasure, but I found more happiness watching fun old movies/tv shows, talking with my husband/friends and of course, the best freakin’ thing ever … taking naps.
Hope this is helpful to someone! Feel free to leave questions in the comments or email me (meredithtested-at-gmail.com).