2nd Trimester: Weeks 14 to 27
Welcome to your 2nd trimester. Hopefully, morning sickness is fading away and your energy levels are beginning to increase! The second trimester is all about getting stuff done, enjoying your renewed energy levels, and absorbing lots of new knowledge. If you are still not feeling well, take your checklist at your own pace and remember there is no rush.
1. Make Announcements
If you haven't already told the exciting news to friends and family, now is the time! Many of the people in your life may have already gotten the hint if you've experienced morning sickness or even started growing a little bump. It's a time to celebrate and begin embracing all the changes on the way. Explore creative ways that are unique to you and your family to make the big announcement. Pinterest and Instagram are my two favorite places to find ideas. It's also the time for you and your partner to tell your employers that you're expecting. The sooner maternity and/or paternity leave is sorted out the better. Waiting until the last minute makes for unnecessary stress and worry. Get the plans on paper and enjoy the rest of your pregnancy!
2. Take Bump Pictures
Want to document your growing belly each week? You will start showing very soon if you haven't already. While it can be fun to have a pretty chalkboard and gorgeous background alongside perfect hair and make-up each week, it's not a must. Having these quick pictures to look back on, even if they’re just for you to see, it is never a regret! You will be amazed at how fast your figure changes during your second trimester. While you\'re documenting your little bump, consider booking your maternity photos! While it's not quite time to take professional pictures, it is the perfect time to book your session! Great maternity photographers’ schedules can fill up fast, so book ahead! If you're in East Tennessee, check out my local favorite: Just Another Mom Photography. Tell her I sent you!
3. Buy a Maternity Pillow
While we're on the topic of your ever-growing belly, now is the perfect time to buy a maternity pillow to support better rest. If you like resting comfortably, these are a must! When searching for the perfect maternity pillow, consider your bed size, support needs, and your height. Not all pillows are a perfect fit for everyone.
My Top 3 Maternity Pillow Picks
4. Create Your Registry
The second trimester is full of fun stuff like building your registry, planning a baby shower, and setting up your nursery. Keep in mind that every family is different, and your family's needs will vary greatly from others. There are 3 things to keep in mind when making your baby checklist:
Embrace the uniqueness of your list and rock it! There is no right or wrong here.
Related Post: Newborn Registry: The Minimalist Approach
5. Take Care of Yourself
It's vital to go to all your prenatal visits with your midwife or doctor, but don't forget to continue exercising and eat a healthy diet filled with fiber and protein. We easily find ourselves so on the go that we're eating more fast food than home-cooked meals and never getting enough water. Take some time to slow down, find the holes in your daily care, then work towards improving these habits little by little.
Healthy Habits While Pregnant
Attend All Your Prenatal Care Visits
See Your Dentist
Eat the Rainbow
Drink 80 ounces of Filtered Water a Day
Go to Bed Early
6. Help Ease Stretch Marks
Our bodies are amazing and stretch marks are a part of our story as humans. However, we don't always love getting them. There is no foolproof way of avoiding them altogether during pregnancy since genetics and age play a major role in it. There are two simple things you can do to reduce the discomfort, such as itching, associated with getting stretch marks. First, drink plenty of water each day to keep your skin hydrated and elastic. Second, apply rich belly butter to your growing body multiple times per day. The most common areas to get stretch marks are on your breasts, belly, thighs, and butt. Apply a deeply moisturizing butter such as this one: Palmer's Cocoa Butter
7. Schedule Your Anatomy Scan
Yay, you have the chance to get a sneak peek at your little one or little ones! Figure out if you want to find out the gender during your scan or want to keep it a surprise for the birth. If you decide not to find out, let your ultrasound technician know before the scan begins. It's also common (and very normal) to be nervous about getting an anatomy scan. Bring your partner or close friends and family with you can help share the excitement along with the anxiety.
8. Get Yourself in Good Alignment
Are you beginning to feel the discomfort of pregnancy? Or, maybe you're energy levels are low? Visit your chiropractor often from now until you give birth. The pregnancy hormone "relaxin", which allows our pelvis to open and expand during pregnancy in preparation for the birth, is beginning to kick in and may leave you feeling unsteady. Proper alignment and slowing down can help! Another way to keep your body balanced is by practicing Spinning Babies Daily Activities regularly. These principles are easy to do, don't cost you a penny, and are all great for helping align your uterus and baby into an optimal position for labor and birth.
9. Plan for Childcare
If you and your partner are returning to work after your baby is born, begin making a childcare plan now. It may seem early, but many childcare facilities have a wait list that is several months long for small babies. If your choose to have an in-home babysitter instead, then start holding interviews. It could take several months to find the right fit. Or, maybe you are going to be a stay-at-home mom for a while!? Great, interview part-time babysitter for date nights, time with older siblings and just to have a break.
10. Know Your Stuff
Knowledge is power! Begin reading books on pregnancy, birth, and postpartum recovery. It's important to know your options, understand your rights as a healthcare consumer, and have a base understanding of childbirth. Do your own research in order to make an informed decision that works best for you and your family.
Ways to Know Your Stuff
Read Great Books
Have Open Communication with Your Care Provider
Take a Childbirth Class
Hire a Doula
11. Hire a Doula
Whether you're planning a natural birth, an epidural birth, or a scheduled cesarean birth - a doula can help! Doulas honor your birth wishes by offering evidence-based information and being there for you emotionally before, during, and after birth, as well as providing physical support during labor or after a cesarean birth. If hiring a doula is the right thing for your birth, begin interviewing several doulas in your area now! Finding the right fit is crucial, so interview as many as you need- especially since many doulas offer free consultations!
12. De-clutter and Organize
Utilize your increased energy levels and nesting hormones by de-cluttering to make room for your baby. You can have a yard sale to raise some extra cash or just donate anything you don't want. Be mindful to not lift anything too heavy that may injure you. Where will the nursery go? What kind of organization system could you implement now to help reduce the stress of managing a household during your postpartum time? Be sure to have your partner recruit friends and family for extra help!
13. Plan Your Postpartum Recovery
It's never too soon to plan for a great postpartum experience! The postpartum period needs to be treated as a special time, a time when women deserve extra care. Your mind and body are engaging in important work during this time, and you will need plenty of rest and support in the first few weeks after giving birth. Build an in-depth postpartum care plan with your partner, as well as look into alternative postpartum healing techniques such as placenta encapsulation and postpartum belly binding.
14. Take a Babymoon
Plan a little getaway with your partner for a memorable time together before your life changes forever. This can even be a special weekend at home! If you have other children, ask a family member to keep them for a weekend. Plan a special meal to cook together, take an evening walk, or get a couple’s massage. As tempting as it is, don't focus on chores or de-cluttering if you choose to stay home. Be intentional with your time together, have some fun, and just enjoy the weekend!