F.F. 28- Guest Blogger-Healthy Lifestyle Choices for Expectant Mothers

I’m bringing back my Fertility Friday!  I got all mopey and ditched it but just because my trek to having more kids is out doesn’t mean I can’t keep encouraging others.

This adorable blogger, Katie from Moore From Katie, has written a great article on keeping healthy during pregnancy but many of this can apply to all woman.  Thank you so much for being a part of the blog today Katie and I hope you all enjoy her site as much as I do!

“Katie Moore has written and submitted this article. Katie is an active blogger who discusses the topics of, motherhood, children, fitness, health and all other things Mommy. She enjoys writing, blogging, and meeting new people! To connect with Katie contact her via her blog, Moore From Katie or her twitter, @moorekm26.”

Healthy Lifestyle Choices for Expectant Mothers

The benefits of a healthy pregnancy are widely recognized. Although much information exists on the subjects of health and pregnancy, many women are unsure of how to maintain good health while expecting a child. And while it’s true that women may differ in their health goals and needs, all expectant moms can benefit from basic health knowledge.

Before starting a new health program however, a mother should visit her doctor. A doctor will help decide it a mother is healthy enough to begin a new diet or exercise routine. A doctor is also the best person to ask for advice when it comes to delivery. With so many optional choices to make, circumcision, umbilical cord blood banking and immunizations, a woman should be consulting her doctor every step of the way.
Diet and Exercise
A healthy, balanced diet should be a priority during pregnancy. Eating the right foods will alleviate many of the negative side effects of pregnancy, such as water retention and constipation, and will also keep blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar and weight at healthy levels.

A healthy diet for expectant moms should include lots of fresh produce, lean meats, whole grains and plenty of water. Sugars, fats, complex carbohydrates and processed foods should be kept to a minimum, but giving into pregnancy cravings is okay on occasion. In addition, it’s important for expectant moms to eat three meals a day, along with several small snacks, instead of skipping meals. Skipping meals leads to drops in blood sugar levels, which can lead to dizziness, nausea and fainting.

Exercise during pregnancy is a much-debated topic, and there are many opinions on what is safe and what isn’t. With all the conflicting information, many women are confused as to which workouts, if any, are right for them. The good news is that, unless a doctor has advised against it, exercise is perfectly healthy for most expectant moms. Regular exercise can improve mood and body function, help maintain a healthy weight and even promote postnatal healing.

Low-impact workouts are recommended during pregnancy, as they aren’t as jarring or damaging to the body as high-impact options. A few great exercises for mommies-to-be include walking, prenatal yoga and swimming. Workouts that include a lot of bouncing, twisting or abdominal strain should be avoided, as should heavy lifting and dangerous sports, such as rafting or skiing.

Maintaining Heart Health
Since heart disease is a major female health issue, good heart health should be every woman’s concern. Since pregnancy causes excess strain on the heart and other organs, maintaining heart health while pregnant should be an even bigger priority. In addition to healthy diet and exercise habits, there are a number of ways expectant moms can keep their hearts in great shape during pregnancy. One way is to avoid stress whenever possible. Stress and anxiety increase blood pressure and heart rate, which make the heart work harder than normally. Expectant moms who suffer from increased stress and anxiety levels can find relief with the help of yoga, meditation or other relaxing activities, such as taking a warm bath or reading a book.

Healthy Lifestyle Choices
Healthy moms are more likely to have healthy babies. And while some health knowledge is learned, much of it is common sense. Expectant moms should use their best judgment when it comes to health and lifestyle choices. For example, abstaining from drinking, smoking and other risky behaviors is the obvious choice for moms-to-be, as is eating healthy foods and taking prenatal vitamins. Making healthy choices during pregnancy can lead to a lifetime of better health for both mother and child.

Fertility Friday 7- 7 Positive Things About Fertility Treatments

Let’s put a happy, positive spin on this weeks FF post shall we?  Seven (yes 7) positive things that come from the fertility challenge.

  1. this experience certainly makes your relationship to your spouse grow stronger
  2. strengthens your character
  3. makes you appreciate your children a little more*
  4. you get so many more sonograms than if you conceived naturally*
  5. you learn so much about your body and the pregnancy process
  6. it prepares you for the expense of children*
  7. who else can say they knew their children from this point…

“embryos” in a petri dish for my ivf …

*if you have been blessed to conceive and deliver..

Fertility Friday 6

Everyone around us seems to be getting pregnant or just popping them out.  I’m super excited because it’s all the people we love.  However sometimes I get sad and cry.  Not weepy but just a little sad.  This week I have been very emotional and snappy.  I thought it was PMS but finally fessed up that it’s all the new babies I’ve been holding.  I sent S a text explaining this and he replied “me too.”  That hit me hard because I always think of him as my solid rock.  I’m the emotional one and he is always so strong for me that I never stop to think maybe he’s hurting too.  He is.  He really is.  In these situations of infertility the women tend to get all the attention or at least that is what I witness.  We can forget that there is a man wishing to be a parent as well.  I need to keep that in check and let him be sad for a change.  Those two words really made me realize a lot.

Later that night I was talking to my husband and he was thinking back to when we first started getting serious.  I was upfront with him and told him dr. after dr. told me I wouldn’t be able to get pregnant.  Obviously he stuck with me but I never thought much about his feelings, I guess because I never thought we would get THAT serious. He said he used to think all the time “If I stick with this I’m never going to be a father or a grandfather.”  I guess my thoughts were always, well now I can have a big mixed family like a Benetton Ad.  When he gets sad he thinks back to those days and smiles that he IS a father and WILL be a grandfather.  He’s right.  Sometimes we just need to take a hard look at what we have that we never thought possible and move on.

Fertility Friday 4

Ahh the beginning of fertility treatments and I’m already messing up. The first time around was so confusing to me and you would think I would know what I am doing by now but I have no clue.  I was always rather sick growing up so I have this fantastic ability to automatically tune doctors out.  It is completely involuntary.  I ask intelligent questions, take notes (that turn out to be gibber gabber) and nod as if I completely understand.  As soon as I walk out of the office it is like the slate was wiped clean again.  What the hell did he just say?  Now this time I will say I do know what is going on but even so the instructions are usually overwhelming.  My packet of information came in the mail a week ago and even though I talked to my nurse I still forgot what to do with the birth control pills. My cycle started on Friday so I called to make my appointment for blood work for day 3, Sunday.  On Saturday I realized I hadn’t taken the antibiotic yet (always necessary at the beginning of treatment ) so I ran to the pharmacy to get it filled and take it. There was an extra scrip in the folder and I asked the pharmacy what it was for.  In all honesty I thought it was for prenatal vitamins which I wasn’t going to have filled because they make me sick.  Well, when he said it was for birth control I panicked.  Being a weekend I couldn’t get a hold of the dr. or nurse, I didn’t see any instructions in my hand out so I popped the pill (according to the pill instructions.) So like me to panic.  Well that night I took the antibiotic and low and behold not being a pill person to begin with I throw up!  This is good and bad.  Good because it probably weakened the pill I WASN’T supposed to take until after my blood work but bad because we’re not sure if the antibiotic was absorbed enough into my system. Ha-ha when my nurse, DW, called on Monday (monitoring was Sunday and all was good) she just laughed as we have been through panic Kerry before!  As of right now I will continue on the pill and hope we get insurance approval to move forward in the early months of 2012.  A little funny how in order to get pregnant I have to start by taking the pill.  Whatever works I will do!

Have I used this photo before? Sorry but I love it (Kristin Staples Photography)

Fertility Friday 3

So there has been much discussion in the way of having more kids. We always wanted a big family but after all the issues the first time around we counted our blessings and settled on twins that were perfect and fully completed our family. Or so we thought. After an ectopic pregnancy over a year ago we couldn’t help shake that itch for more kids. We tried on our own but after many attempts and many doctor visits it seems there is just too much internal damage from too many major surgeries for another “on our own” pregnancy to occur with success. So here we are heading back to the fertility specialist to begin again. Is this crazy? Are we messing with Mother Nature too much? Should we be thankful for our little girls and close that door? Does anyone out there have thoughts on this topic?

photo courtesy of Kristin Staples Photography

 

Fertility Friday 1

Let’s see how this works for all of you out there trying.  My memory of the strenuous two years of trying to have my own family is a very blurry one.  What I remember were the endless trips to Annapolis. Two hours there, two hours back.  Most months I would leave my house at 5:00 in the morning to make it to the Dr. office by 7:00 so I could be seen first and then jump back in the car to make it to work by 9:00.  I was usually late but I had a very cool boss who never noticed or tracked time and now we are best buds even though at the time he had no clue.  This occurred anywhere from 7 – 15 times a month; mostly alone unless my husband could make it or my dear parents.  I would cry.  It was hard going alone but I knew it had to be done.  I would be scared but I grew stronger.  I would get down but learned to be positive.  I would get drunk but sober up although that wasn’t during the drive, appointment or work.  It was every month when my nurse, D,  would call and tell me once again she was sorry but it didn’t work.  I hated those days, so did my husband and my Mom because those two had to calm my nerves, wipe my tears, and then put me to bed.  Sounds dramatic but it sucked! It sucked because one after another women were getting pregnant all around me.  It sucked because once again on the news a baby was abandoned.  It sucked because I knew S was sad with me.  It sucked because the issue was me.  But i tell you what above all of that what I remember the most was standing on the corner of Toulouse and Bourbon and getting a call.  D said, ” I hope you are drinking O’Douls!” That is what still sits in my heart and mind.  That is when the real emotions started, the real tears, the real party.  New Orleans was all a little girl with a dream of being a Mom needed.