Three moms-to-be answer all our pregnancy questions.
If you’re someone like me who’s never been pregnant, there are some things you’d love to ask a pregnant friend, but probably feel it’s too inappropriate.
Read more: "I hope you keep your sense of humour"
To help you out, we asked three willing pregnant women (all in different circumstances and stages of pregnancy) to answer some of those awkward questions.
To give you an idea of what their situations are, Nicola is 36 weeks into expecting her second child, Tammy is still in her first trimester at 12 weeks and Camilla is about to pop! (Names have been changed for privacy).
When you found out you were pregnant did you know what to expect?
Nicola: I had no idea what pregnancy would be like the first time I was pregnant. Obviously now being pregnant for a second time I had some sort of an idea but it has still be so vastly different to my first pregnancy. Running and cleaning up after a toddler, working, being a wife and running a household is no small deal when you're growing a human! I am always tired.
Tammy: I had no idea. I assumed it would be all sunshine and rainbows considering that's all we see when someone is pregnant. This is just not the case. It's hard and for the most part it's really not pretty.
Camilla: I thought pregnancy would involve me having this amazing glow. I couldn't wait to show off my preggie belly and wear cute little dresses. I thought I'd be a bit tired and queazy in the first trimester but that I'd be ready to deal with it. It wasn't like that at all! In my first trimester, I couldn't eat, I was constantly tired and nauseas. I couldn't go anywhere. But the second trimester was much easier! The third trimester was the worst of all.
Do you sometimes think it’s a bit creepy that there’s a thing growing inside you?
Nicola: I have sort of come to terms with it now but if I think about it too much it definitely is a bit creepy. More mind blowing than creepy. There is a human child growing in my belly, it's gone from a tiny sperm & egg to a physical being with a brain, eyes that can see, fingernails, hair, functional organs etc.. All because my body just knows what to do!? And whilst I just carry on with life. Incredible.
Tammy: I don't feel creepy about a baby growing inside of me. At the moment all I feel is utter amazement at the entire miracle of life but I'm sure once I'm at the stage of seeing feet and arms coming, almost literally, out of my belly that I might then find it creepy.
Camilla: I don't think it's creepy. It definitely feels unreal though. When I went for my scans and saw him it was like I was looking at someone else's scan. It's never really sunk in that all that is happening inside of me.
Has your sex life changed in any way?
Nicola: Oh yes. Firstly I'm tired all the time so the last thing on my mind is nookie. Getting rest is a definite priority. The more pregnant you get, the less of a priority sex is.. Sorry husband! Also - the second time around - everything is sore!
Tammy: It's different. More awkward. Almost like a really bad one night stand. Mainly because we're both first time parents and we are nervous about positions and pressure. It's still good though once we get the hang of it.
Camilla: I'm going to be a single mom but I think that if I did have a partner there would still be no sexy-time. I'd worry that it would hurt the baby.
How do you feel about people touching your tummy?
Nicola: I don't mind close friends and family touching but definitely not complete strangers. Unless they ask nicely. Otherwise it's completely inappropriate.
Tammy: My tummy has been pretty noticeable from the start so I've had a few hands launch at me without warning. I am not sure how I feel about it to be honest. Most of the time I really enjoy it but it is a little weird when strangers want to rub your belly.
Camilla: I absolutely hate it! The only way I can describe it is like someone touching your private parts. It freaks me out. Before I fell pregnant I always thought I'd want people to touch it but now I hate it.
On average, how many times a day do you go to the loo?
Nicola: Every half an hour. This is not a joke. At night - every hour. I am 36 weeks along now though.
Tammy: Aaah the loo. My very best friend over the last several weeks. I visit this friend too many times to actually keep count. Today alone I think I've visited my old friend about 8 times. Possibly more.
Camilla: In the beginning I thought I was going a lot (probably 4 or 5 times a day which increased). Now towards the end he's down-positioned and sitting on my bladder and I've been going to the bathroom every ten minutes! It's a lot like having a bladder infection because often you feel like you really need to go but nothing comes out.
How did you deal with morning sickness? Any tips?
Nicola: ASIC. The most amazing, pregnancy safe tablet. You need to take it regularly for it to work, not only when you feel ill. And then lots of snacky foods.
Tammy: Deal with morning sickness? Like that's even possible! Firstly it's not just the morning that you're sick and secondly there are very few things that help. I'm on month 3 of constant nausea, vomiting and gagging and I still haven't found anything effective enough to stop it or make me feel human for longer than 20 minutes. They say ginger helps, they say eating small meals, often helps, they say milk helps, they say many things help but I'm still trying to find mine.
Camilla: I was given anti-nausea pills and medication by the doctor but I decided I wanted to do this pregnancy completely drug-free. I carry a bucket with me everywhere I go. I have a bucket with a lid in my car. I drank loads of ginger tea and sweets in my first trimester, which sort of helps. But once you get to the second trimester it's much better.
They say that most pregnant women develop a craving for something. What’s been your craving?
Nicola: Ice cold water / ice tea. By the litre. And fresh cold fruit.
Tammy: I've had many cravings. Recently it's been calamari but not just any calamari, the calamari heads from Ocean Basket. I literally dream of them. Before my calamari phase it was ice lollies, banana loaf and orange juice. I still haven't had my calamari. Sigh.
Camilla: Chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate. I know it's bad and that I said I'd do this drug free, but I don't have any coffee, or fizzy drinks with caffeine but I can't keep off chocolate. I eat about a slab a day. And if it wasn't chocolate, it was cake (preferably chocolate cake). Ice was also something I couldn't live without.
What are you most looking forward to after birth?
Nicola: Becoming a family of four. Bonding with my little newborn, his little noises and new baby smell.
Tammy: I'm sure many people will not like what I have to say but it's coming from a very real place for me. The thing I am most looking forward to is not being pregnant anymore. This has not been easy for me. It's been a constant struggle. One that has really just started and I just don't know myself the last few months. The pain, the hormones, being sick all through the day have been more than I can bear and I simply cannot wait to hold my bundle in my arms so that this feeling of utter helplessness would have passed.
Camilla: Bonding with my baby, being a mommy, watching him go through his milestones and feeling unconditional love. I'm so in love with him already my heart wants to burst. I also can't wait to see what he looks like.