Being a mother to a premature child is absolutely terrifying. Not only is the baby here before you expect, but decisions about the child’s care must be made on the fly and without much research. I developed sudden and severe preeclampsia when I was 8 months pregnant with Aidan. While everything turned out great with my son, I still wish that I would have had the opportunity to enjoy my last few months of pregnancy and do the things that all other moms get to do. When I found out that I was expecting my second child, I immediately jumped in to preparation mode. I wanted to make sure that I had all of my bases covered, including knowing all of my options and exploring lots of health tips for new moms in order to avoid the same complications that I had with my first born. I reflected upon all of the things that I did not get to experience with Aidan, and developed a pregnancy to-do list that I would be sure to complete before Avery’s arrival.
My Pregnancy To-Do List
- Take belly pictures: I absolutely hated belly pictures during my first pregnancy. In fact, I avoided them at all costs. Now, 4 years later, I am kicking myself. As much as I hate seeing myself seeming fat and gross, my kids will appreciate it!
- Schedule a pregnancy massage: Deep in to the second and third trimesters you will appreciate strong hands digging deep in to your lower back.
- Go on a mini vacation: Sure, you can’t drink or do anything too adventurous but you can relax. Take time for yourself and rest up. Hit up the spa for a pedicure or sip a virgin daiquiri by the pool.
- Take naps: Lots and lots of naps. If they ever happen after pregnancy, I can assure you that they will never be as enjoyable as a pregnancy nap.
- Write a letter to your baby: It might be hard to imagine what your baby will look like, or what their personality might entail. The one thing for certain that all of us as parents can relate to are the hopes and dreams that we have for our children. Put it all down on paper. One day, a long time from now, it will be a beautiful thing for your child to look back on.
- Pack a bag: I started packing my hospital bag weeks before Avery was born. I would add things, then remove them. Then add more things, and then remove others. I put so much thought in to my bag. As a side note, the only things I actually used were the super long phone charging cord, slippers and the $10 bill that I stashed for the vending machine.
- Plan the arrival: Sure, this sounds like a no brainer. For my first born, I was unable to do this. I wanted to really plan the arrival of my second baby. I wanted to know who was going to be at the hospital, what my hair was going to look like, what color my nails would be…the whole package. It might sounds superficial, but I wanted total control over anything and everything that I COULD have control over.
It is vital that new mothers are informed of their options, especially when it comes to the health and care of their new baby. ViaCord, which can truly be life altering, is an option that I looked in to extensively during my last few months of pregnancy. More and more families are choosing to bank their baby’s cord blood. In fact, over 350,000 newborns have their cord blood banked at ViaCord. Watch a quick video here about how it works.
ViaCord has been collecting and storing #cordblood stem cells for families for over 20 years. While the sound of cord blood banking is intimidating, it really is not a scary thing at all. In fact, cord blood stem cells are doing amazing things today – healing serious diseases and changing lives for the better.
Collecting umbilical cord blood is a much simpler process than many people imagine. It’s a safe, painless procedure that won’t disrupt you, your baby, or your birth plan. You can collect even if you choose delayed cord clamping or are having a c-section.
Cord Blood banking is the process of collecting and storing the blood remaining in your newborn’s umbilical cord. The blood within your newborn baby’s umbilical cord contains young stem cells that have an amazing power to heal. As of today, it can be used in the treatment of ~ 80 diseases, including certain cancers, genetic diseases & blood disorders. Over the past 2 years ~ 120 ViaCord children have used their own banked cord blood stem cells for medical treatments & clinical trials. An informed decision is the best decision. Do your research. Know your cord blood options so you can make the decision that’s right for your family. Now, after all of that research, you owe yourself that pregnancy massage and mini-vacation!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.