Thursday 13 June 2019

Pregnancy - The Highs, Lows and What You Really Need To Know!

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* Rennie Peppermint for heartburn and indigestion. Rennie Liquid Heartburn Relief Oral Suspension. Rennie Heartburn, Indigestion & Wind Relief Chewable Tablets. Always read the label. Medicines can affect the unborn baby. Always talk to your pharmacist or doctor before taking any medicine in pregnancy. * 

Finding out you are pregnant is one of the most magical times in your life, it certainly was for me. I was nervous, scared but already in love with a baby I had never met as soon as I saw those two blue lines. Pregnancy is a crazy journey of love and worry, stress and excitement and the adventure of a lifetime all to meet your tiny new baby.

I have had two pregnancies myself and both have been completely different, things I found difficult the first time round I barely noticed the second time around and vice versa. However, I must admit my pregnancy with James was so much easier that the second time round with Evelyn! My pregnancy with Evelyn was hard, I was super sick, spent most of my third trimester draped over a birthing ball counting down the minutes until my due date, both my babies were worth it all though.

Photo by Anna Civolani

But with the highs of course come the lows and there are so many things I wish I had known during my first pregnancy that would have made things a little easier (and saved me lots of money too!). So, I wanted to share some of my personal highs and lows as well as some of the things I wish I had known when I first fell pregnant. 

The Highs

Growing a human! I mean this is a pretty obvious one but can we all just take a moment to realise that whilst pregnant we are growing a real-life human being inside us! I mean that's just a pretty amazing thought isn't it? I'm not sure it really hit me straight away but now I sit back and think just how clever our bodies are that they can grow a human in just 9 months.

Shopping for baby. As soon as I found I was pregnant (both times around) I couldn't help but find myself browsing the baby aisles in every shop I went in to. I mean let’s face it, baby clothes are just too cute it’s hard to resist buying a few bits. We didn't find out the gender of our babies until they were both born, but that didn't stop my buying lots of neutral clothing, toys and nursery accessories during my pregnancy!

Whilst it can be hard to resist the cute designs and teeny tiny baby grows it is worth remembering just how quickly babies grow. I found this out the hard way first time around and had so many outfits that James outgrew before he could even wear them. The second time around with Evelyn I still really enjoyed baby shopping but tried to buy a variety of sizes so there was plenty of time for her to wear it all.

All the firsts - flutters, scans and proper baby kicks. Before becoming pregnant myself, I had always been intrigued by what it would really feel like having a baby move and kick inside of you, and whilst it is indescribable it’s an amazing feeling too. It’s almost like a reassurance that baby is ok, that baby is growing and moving around inside your tummy. The first few flutters were a bit of a realisation moment for me, that there really was a baby growing inside my tummy! Then came the kicks, jabs and full-on rolls from my baby and it was such a warming feeling. My husband also loved the kicks and rolls too as it meant he could feel baby moving in my tummy and finally feel what I had been feeling all this time.

Of course, the scans are a special time too! Getting to see your baby on that screen for the very first time is both amazing and a huge relief all at once. Even if I did take one million tests, had horrendous sickness and an already growing bump, all of which confirm your pregnancy, for me there was still this tiny little voice in my head that said, but what if you’re not actually pregnant!? The scan confirmed that for me as well as confirming everything was going well, which is always a huge relief.

Meeting baby for the first time! Ok so I know this isn't strictly "pregnancy”, but I just had to include it. That moment that baby finally arrives, and you get to meet them for the first time is the most amazing high ever. That sudden realisation in that moment that 9 months of pain, discomfort, stress and worry have resulted in this moment, in a beautiful, amazing baby makes it all worth it.

The Lows

The worry and stress! No pregnancy comes without worries or stress. For me my main worry was that everything was going as it should inside my tummy with baby. Whilst the scans are reassuring, I had three during the 9 months and it often felt like a long wait in between. Of course, two is the normal number of scans for any mum-to-be, but when you’re a first time mum it can feel like forever when you are waiting.

Then there is the worry and stress about how things will be when baby actually gets here, have you got everything you need, will you know what to do!? My only real advice would be try to relax (easier said than done I know) but things really do seem to just slot in to place. Before long you will be wondering what you were even worried about and struggling to remember life before baby arrived.

That doesn't mean the stress and worry stops though! With pregnancy behind you and a new baby to care for comes a whole new set of worries, stresses and milestones!

Heartburn. Oh, the heartburn! Not even the myth about my baby coming out with a full head of hair could help ease the pain of my heartburn during pregnancy. The heartburn would hit, and it would feel like my whole chest and throat was on fire and it was agony! The only thing that really helped was taking Rennie and keeping myself really propped up in bed.

Heartburn is a common side effect of pregnancy, with around 72% of pregnant women experiencing heartburn and indigestion in their third trimester! It can be caused by hormonal changes and the growing baby pressing against your stomach. Making changes to your diet and lifestyle during pregnancy can help. I found the worse times for me were after eating and lying in bed (as laying down can often make symptoms worse) which let’s face in during the later stages of pregnancy, trying to sleep and eating to curb cravings take up a big part of the day!

Rennie products are thankfully suitable for use during pregnancy (You should always contact your midwife or doctor before taking anything, especially when pregnant). That's because Rennie’s antacid-based calcium carbonate and magnesium carbonate formula acts physically rather than by entering the bloodstream, neutralising excess acid and turning it into water and other natural substances that are easily evacuated by the body. Pregnancy can be hard enough at the best of times so at least Rennie can help with one of the often-painful side effects. 

Lack of sleep. It really doesn't matter how tired and exhausted you feel, as you get bigger and further into your pregnancy getting comfy is just a distant memory! When I was pregnant with Evelyn, I tried just about every trick in the book to get a good night’s sleep, but nothing really worked. I did get a little relief by using a huge pregnancy pillow which was basically a 6ft long sausage shaped pillow which I could cuddle into, hook under my bump and then place between my knees to help my hips. Going to bed (and attempting to get comfy!) became quite the work out. 

What you really need to know! 

Birth plans are great but having a multi-page detailed birth plan may not be the most practical when you go into labour. Having an idea of how you want labour to go is great but remember to keep an open mind, labour is unpredictable and at the end of the day both you and the doctors/midwives all want the same thing, a healthy baby and happy mum at the end.

A midwife once told me it would be better to have a birth plan made up of bullet points with the things most important to me at the top. It meant the midwives and doctors could easily see and read them at a glance and were less likely to be missed.

Don't fight switching to maternity clothes! I squeezed into my "normal" clothes for so long during my first pregnancy. It was tight, uncomfortable and no fun at all. As soon as I switched to maternity clothes, I realised I was totally missing a trick and in my second pregnancy I switched to maternity clothes as soon as I could! They are also great for wearing after you give birth as things can be sore and tender.

Remember every pregnancy is different and even when you think you have it sussed pregnancy loves to throw you a curve ball! There will be days when you feel on top of the world and days when you feel at rock bottom and that is totally normal. Don't be afraid to let people know and take time for yourself, after all you are growing a tiny human inside you!

Do you have any top tips for expectant parents that might help either during pregnancy or those first few weeks?


** This post is written in conjunction with Rennie, however all thoughts are my own. **


  1. I found pregnancy really hard, the nausea, not being able to get comfy and the aches and pains! My best advice to expectant and new mothers is to rest as much as possible and accept all the help.

  2. Several of my friends have had babies recently and I've found it really interesting listening to their experiences.
    I love shopping for baby clothes (everything is so cute!) but one thing I've started doing is buying clothes in size 6 months +. A lot of my friends mentioned they get tonnes of newborn clothes as presents, so it's helpful to have stuff in slightly bigger sizes.

  3. My daughter is 14 weeks now and so worried about all the growing pains - completely forgot about all those things

  4. Such a honest and useful post, will be useful for many women I am sure. Lovely pics too.

  5. Ahh heartburn! I didn't have any on my first, but my second daughter, well Rennies were my best friend morning noon and night. I had to keep packets everywhere! When I went back to work I found a stash in my locker that I forgot about!

  6. I never realised how much you bleed afterwards! I went to the loo about 2 hours after having my daughter and it looked like a murder had taken place as I flooded the floor! Noone told me about that!

  7. Such an interesting read, every pregnanyc is different. I think it is important to keep an open mind and see how things go, so you don't end up dissapointed and with unmet expectations of how your preganncy and birth might go. Mich x

  8. I got through a lot of rennies! Great post. There is so much doesn't get talked about

  9. I had terrible heartburn in my pregnancies! Mind you I had terribe pregnancys full stop!

  10. I found pregnancy really hard. I had hyperemesis with both mine and it was hard going.

  11. One of my pregnancies was twins so I definitely needed those maternity clothes!

  12. Thanks for sharing the highs and lows! I'm planning on having children soon so this was helpful!

  13. Awww the highs and lows! I miss my pregnancy days.

  14. Thank you for this, those of us who've not yet been pregnant at least know what to expect as most just gloss over it.

  15. I used Rennie so much in pregnancy, the heartburn was awful

  16. My advice to any expectant mum would be to realise how much time a newborn takes up. That's your job for a long while and you shouldn't expect to be able to do everything else as well - not at first. It's the most important job in the world, you are allowed to focus on being a Mum.

  17. All my pregnancies were so different, it's good to be prepared for everything isn't it?

  18. This was an excellent and honest article for those expecting. I don't envy that heartburn.

  19. I am sat here with the worst indigestion I would LOVE some Rennie right now!!!! x