We’re over the moon excited for Squishy! However, looking back, if there was any way for me to know for sure that Squishy would come so soon, I would have told myself to do the following:
1. Be comfortable with your body. I felt like was in the worst shape of my life when we conceived Squishy. I wish that I was in better shape. I was at my heaviest and I was just about to start a new fitness regime for 2016 (we found out about Squishy on January 7). I’m speculating, but I feel like some of the pregnancy symptoms I had was aggravated by my weight, especially the aches and pains. Plus, even if I was at my heaviest, my Doctor still told me to gain some weight during the second trimester. So, even if the homework was fun, there was a lot of hesitation and guilt with every bite. What a waste of my guilt-free eating pass!
2. Consider your childcare options. Will you get a nanny/yaya? Do you have extended family members who are willing to help out (retired grandparents, stay-at-home siblings, etc.)? Is there a possibility of one of you staying at home? Obviously you will have about 9 months to figure all of this out, but pregnancy hormones can be tricky! I had sleepless nights and crying fits trying to figure out what’ll work best for us. It was a tough decision because I love my work and I value my independence. And I was already much more dependent on Mikey during my first trimester that the idea of losing more of it later on was difficult to swallow. It might have been easier to figure things out if I was more rational and level headed.
3. Travel barako style. We wanted to go on two trips this year—Japan and Hong Kong. When we found out about Squishy, it was easy to put the planning on hold. There’s time to visit Japan or Hong Kong in the coming years. But, certain aspects of our traveling habits will definitely change. Mikey and I are extremely cheap travelers. We take buses and trains and we rent rooms from Air BnB. We walk for hours. We go to all the museums. We try to see EVERYTHING. When we start traveling again, and the next time will be with Squishy, I don’t think we’ll be able to do everything we did before. It might be a little difficult to walk from one end of Central Park to another again (because as wide-eyed tourists from the Philippines, you think: It’s a park! How big could it be?).
4. Treat yourself a little. If you were kuripot with yourself before you got pregnant, multiply that by one million when you find out that you’re pregnant (and even more so if you’re considering a major career shift). But from my experience, it’s never a painful choice. I was never an extravagant person to begin with, but I used to love window shopping for home things. Mikey and I would have regular Landmark and SM days where we would buy things for our home. Now, I don’t even look. Before we found out about Squishy, we were in the market for a new couch and chairs for our dining table. But I don’t even remember all the inquiries we made. I just stopped caring about it! Maybe I’ll start caring again by next year. Hehe.
5. Have all the wild, spontaneous animal sex you want! Most experts and popular culture will tell you that it’s perfectly fine to have sex when you’re pregnant, and this is generally true except if you’re having a particularly sensitive pregnancy. Very early on in my pregnancy, they spotted a subchorionic hemorrhage in my ultrasound. We were advised by the doctor to take it easy. Operationally, that meant I had to give up teaching (because I shouldn’t walk long distances and stand for long periods) and that we should avoid sex. A few weeks later, the hemorrhage was gone and we were given the go signal by our Doctor! Unfortunately, I was in the middle of my morning sickness period—car rides would make me dizzy and nauseous. I did not want to throw up all over my husband. Or worse, the bed. The second trimester would have been the perfect time to resume regular activities, but the logistics are a bit more complicated with a growing belly. There’s diagramming, choreography, and rehearsals involved. Hahaha. So spontaneous, do-whatever-you-want-whenever-you-want sex is more difficult to achieve now.
Hindsight is always 20/20 and I’m a HUGE fan of over preparation (Excel sheets, etc.). But now, more than ever, I’m learning that all the hiccups and misadventures can actually be really fun! Especially if you have a supportive partner who chooses to focus on the joy of things rather than the challenges. And there’s a lot of joy to go around! ❤