Expecting baby #2 makes me remember my pregnancy with Munna. I could rest and nap whenever I liked without a toddler jumping around my head. I could even let some things slide as baba could obviously tend to them by himself. But this time around it’s been a whole different game. With a toddler who is such a power house of energy and activity, I have been on my toes all day long through out the pregnancy.
Now that I am towards the end of pregnancy, reflecting back I want to share a few things I did good and still others which I could have done better.
Plan & organise ahead of time:
Early and late pregnancy can be very tiring for most women. With many women feeling their best in the second trimester. Take advantage of the energy that comes with the second trimester to get all your shopping and organizing done leaving to save you the trouble later as you get bigger and the tiredness returns.
Delegate your responsibilities:
Now is the best time than ever to drop the “super woman” facade. No you can’t do it all by yourself. Don’t feel shy asking for help especially when it comes to your husband. If you can, try turning to friends and family for additional help. If not then hire help if you are able to. Help with household chores including cooking, laundry and cleaning can be a huge relief.
If you can have a friend or family over to take care of your child. Or better yet some days let them take them to a trip outside so you can have time by yourself. But if you have a toddler anywhere like mine, they don’t take separation easily. Have friends over with children similar your kid’s age so they can play around and you can just relax without you being out of your child’s sight.
Lower your standards:
Growing another human inside you is not an easy job. It makes it difficult to accomplish the tasks which you did so swiftly before. It’s alright if the laundry piles up a bit or the house is a mess. It’s not going to be the end of the world if you can’t remember when you last changed sheets. There are days when you would rather lay in bed all day long rather than do anything else.
If you have been following me on instagram you will know that I have been very particular about Munna’s screen time and diet. I hate to admit this but sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures. There have been days where I have left him in front of the laptop a bit too long for my liking or handed him a little too many of biscuits just so I could get some rest. There’s no need to think you are being lazy or even feel guilty about it. Just as long as you don’t totally give in, it’s alright to slack a bit.Just recuperate enough to get back to your rules again.
Find time to do things that make you happy:
Before your next one arrives and your life changes again forever, keep aside little pockets of time in your day that bring you joy. It could be reading, some care free strolls around the neighborhood with your toddler or just laying back and relaxing. If you aren’t experiencing any complications, try taking up some low impact activities like pilates (especially designed for pregnant women) or swimming. These activities will have you feeling good throughout your pregnancy.
Surround yourself with positivity:
In pregnancy you are more vulnerable than ever to give in to any sort of stress and anxiety given all the changes that are going within you. It’s important more than ever in pregnancy to cut off all sorts of negativity in your life. Beginning with yourself, do anything to keep negative thoughts at bay. Keep yourself busy doing anything which makes you feel good including extra payers, making an extra mention of Allah (dikr) or meditation. Surround yourself with people who bring out the best rather than the stress in you. Try to avoid all the unnecessary drama.
Encourage your toddler to be independent:
It’s very likely around this time your toddler will be already be showing interest in doing things for themselves. Like dressing up. At least encourage them to put on their own shoes on or even pull their pants up. Depending on their age they can also do small chores around the house like putting their own clothes in laundry or carrying cutlery or plates to the table (provided they are child safe). This will also make your child feel confident and proud of himself.
It’s also a good idea at this age to tell them to clean up after they are done playing.
Plan activities with your toddler you can easily manage:
Having a toddler means you always have to be on the run. Try to preserve your energy and limit your time running around. Think of keeping your little one busy in ways in which you can engage with them without having to move a lot. Just to give some ideas:
- Reading is the best activity you can do to amuse yourself and your toddler anytime of the day. You can lay down and relax and besides it will get your child to sit still i only for a while.
- Provide play dough and some loose parts and watch as their imagination takes flight. This one is sure to keep them busy for long. But make sure you are close by to prevent any hazards of mouthing and choking.
- Puzzles, painting, coloring, building blocks. Be sure to stock up on activities to do now and later when the baby arrives while you still can.
Prepare meals in advance and freeze:
Whenever cooking, try to make 3-4 meals in a single go so you can save yourself the trouble later. Also if you are not up to cooking one day you can always take out a meal and fill up on a home made meal rather than order take aways.
Most of all….
Make time for yourself & take care of your health:
You may feel that your hands are already full with a toddler and all that life has to throw your way. Doing things especially for yourself may be the furthest thing from your mind. Being mindful of your physical and mental health goes a long way. You must have heard the old saying you can’t pour from an empty cup. If you need to fill up your family’s cups, fill yours up first. Our children pick up their behaviors from us and even their attitudes towards themselves from us. With a new life about to be a part of your family, it’s important you start developing some healthy self caring habits now :).
And last but not the least….
Never underestimate the power of dua and have trust in Allah that He makes things easy for you <3.
Anything you would like to add to the list above? How did you handle pregnancy with a toddler? Would love to hear from you <3.