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Things we wish we had known about pregnancy; before getting pregnant! From mothers to mothers.

I'm starting this mini series about all the things mothers wish they had known before and after various moments in their pregnancies. It's exciting and also a real reminder that we don't know everything; we can always learn and grow. I've collected responses from women all over the world, of all ages, with young children, old children and many more! I hope when reading this it will not put a damper on your ideas of pregnancy and birth but enlighten and maybe even bring comfort to those who have felt or are feeling/thinking the same things. Thanks to the internet, social media and books; learning about pregnancy and the symptoms that might happen to you is a lot easier. So some of the information collected may seem obvious to you; either way it's interesting to see how some mothers observed new things about themselves when pregnant.

Ashleigh UK

- How up and down your emotions can get.

- How many different foods you aren't allowed to eat/shouldn't eat.

I know for a fact Ashleigh is a huge cheese lover (soft cheeses) and loves cured meats (salami, chorizo, ect..). I bet it must be so difficult to not be able to eat the things you really love or be limited to tiny amounts when in reality you want a whole platter. As for emotions, from personal experience, just being on my period gets me wired because of my up and down moods; I don't know how some of you ladies can handle all those extra hormones running round. As for Ashleigh, she is an amazingly kind and loving mother to Sienna who is coming up 2 and half years old.

Sarah USA

- People keep asking all the same questions.

- Your body won't be the same again.

- Babies don't need all the stuff we think they should have.

- Don't go crazy packing your hospital bag.

- I wish I had bought more things for myself rather than just the babies.

Sarah gave birth to twins in August 2018; she's an honest and resilient mother and a great friend. Sarah mentioned that her and the family went overboard buying loads of clothes and equipment for the babies before giving birth and then realized that in these first few months; they didn't need all of it. Instead she felt that she should have bought more necessities for herself like nipple cream and shields, maternity pads and comfortable underwear. Looking back Sarah said she packed her hospital bag with everything and anything, but later found that her hospital supplied most of the essentials for her. (Sarah gave birth in the USA and I'm not sure if all hospitals provide you with things after birth, this is something you'd have to ask them about.) As for the question asking; I must admit I am one of those annoying people who will ask "when are you due?", "Is it a boy or girl?", ect... Although these questions are being asked with good intentions; I can completely understand how some pregnant mothers (who may be in the last few weeks/over due/or are just tired of being pregnant) can get bored by all these repetitious questions and maybe even frustrated by the consistent similarity.

As for the rest of the responses received they have all come in anonymously so I've compiled them below. The responses are from a mixture of mothers from all of the world and of all ages; some are grandmothers too!

- Every pregnancy is different; Don't listen to all the off putting stories.

- How uncomfortable it can be sleeping with a bump.

- The constant tiredness.

- You should rest when you need to rest.

- All the checkups and procedures/tests that were done.

- How sick morning sickness is.

- The cost of all the checkups.

- The spotting I had.

As mentioned above, some of these mothers are from countries where healthcare is not free/subsidized and every single mother who responded above had a different experience; don't assume some of these things will happen to you.

It's interesting to see how even mothers who have read up, downloaded apps and done research/asked questions still learned new things about themselves and their bodies during their journey. It just goes to show that not one mother is the same and everyone has their own ups and downs throughout their pregnancy. In the next series we will be discussing some of the things mothers wish they'd known about LABOUR/CHILDBIRTH before getting into the process itself. Thank you to all the generous mothers who contributed their time towards this entry; you are so appreciated.

*Disclaimer: I am not a medically trained professional nor am I recommending/suggesting anyone do/follow any practices. This is a blog based on personal opinions and research done individually.*

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