Pregnancy Q&A : The 10 most common questions I’ve been asked about my pregnancy
The 10 most common questions I’ve been asked about my pregnancy
Will you continue to travel with a baby?
Of course!!!! Kenny and I have been so fortunate to travel together for so many years, and we are so excited to show this little coconut the world. We are ready!!!!! It will be so great having our home base in Charleston so that we can continue to travel on small trips with the baby while still having a home and routine to come back to in-between, and we’ll definitely make sure we go on some longer travels as soon we’re able to, as well, like back to Bali (as soon as our doctor okays it!) so we can introduce the baby to our ‘family’ there, and spend some time with her or him in our other home!!! We also already have some exciting plans for once the baby is a few months old – we are SO excited to get the lil’ babe its first passport stamp!!!!
We know that travel will look very different once we have a family compared to traveling just the two of us (read: more bags for Kenny to carry), but we are excited and welcome the challenge! And we’re so excited to share all of our tips and tricks we learn along the way with you all – we’re not experts yet but we will be soon! I know how helpful it will be to write about baby and family travel for you guys!! Everything from the best travel strollers, to the best tips for traveling with a baby on an airplane, to all the best baby and family-friendly destinations for your own family adventures. I’m so excited for this extension of Jetset Christina. And of course, Kiddy Flowers (our infant and kids swimwear and resortwear line)– too.
We definitely don’t believe that having kids or a baby should hold you back from traveling – we want our child to grow up as a citizen of the world, experiencing all this beautiful world has to offer. And we are beyond excited to see it all through their little eyes.
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Will you take time off of work when the baby comes?
This is a tough one for me because, as a business owner, it’s nearly impossible to take time off of your business at any time. I know many of you out there may be your own business owners and are in the same boat. And I know it will be anything but easy balancing new motherhood with accomplishing everything I want to in our businesses. But I do not think they need to be mutually exclusive. I was blessed to grow up with an amazing example in my very hard-working mother who set an incredible standard for me as far as what being an absolute all-star mom, and boss-business-powerhouse, can look like at the same time.
That all being said, I’m doing everything in my power to prepare my businesses so that I am able to take a big step back for some time this summer, and give myself a lot of grace as a new mom, while I focus completely on the baby. I’m confident things will continue to run smoothly with our teams while I’m busy being mom for the first time. But, I do see myself continuing to blog for you all and working in little spurts of work when the baby is resting, of course!! Writing is my creative outlet, after all, and I’m so lucky that Kenny and I can both work full-time from home, so that we’re able to be with the baby!! I’m looking forward to sharing every step of the journey of new motherhood with you guys, both here on the blog and on instagram!!! But that’s not work to me, it’s like sharing what we’re up to with friends.
Was this baby planned?
It definitely was! I have always felt very connected to my intuition and gut feelings, and there was without a doubt something pulling me towards this timing of our pregnancy. Call it ‘woo-woo’, but I felt it in my soul that this baby, this timing, was so right. So we went for it. Even though logic would have told us the timing was actually insane – we were just recently married, and had no house or home to speak of at the time. (We actually found out we were pregnant on the exact same day we found out we got our house.) Very meant to be. We feel extremely lucky, humbled, and so, so grateful for the way that everything has worked out so far.
I read a great quote that has stuck with me that said, “From the moment you decide to become a mother, you already are one.” As women, long before an actual pregnancy, as soon as we decide we want children, in so many ways, we are already mothers. We make so many decisions for our lives with our future family in mind, our future children, longgggg before we ever know what they look like or what their names are. Kenny and I have truthfully been building our life together towards this baby, and this family, since the moment we started dating. We’ve been hustling and working our tails off for the past few years so that we could afford this house that our first baby would be born into, and we’re still hustling and working our tails off to afford the lifestyle we want to give him or her. We’ve been working towards this baby, making decisions around this baby, and loving this baby, for so long, that it feels like they’ve been a part of us and our family for so much longer than just the past 7 months. And our hearts grow even more every day.
Are you taking any supplements?
I take Ritual prenatal vitamins (and started about 3 months before we started trying for a baby – my doctor recommended that!). I also take my collagen every day, and I try to have a probiotic, too. And, if I’m feeling low energy, I like an extra B12 supplement! I haven’t been taking any medications and am so happy to have not needed any so far!
I chose Ritual prenatal vitamins among all of the prenatal vitamin choices out there because I felt like they had the best reviews & I’ve been loving it!
What are your best pregnancy travel tips?
I heard from a lot of you guys on instagram that you’re nervous to fly and travel pregnant, and I definitely don’t think you need to be! I have had no issues flying while pregnant, and don’t find it that much more uncomfortable that flying normally! Just make sure you look at this post of my Best Pregnancy Travel Tips because they make a BIG difference.
Some quick ones that I feel make a big difference for me are dressing comfortably (do yourself a HUGE favor and buy this pregnancy flying outfit right now – you’re going to end up wearing it EVERYWHERE, but it’s especially comfy for travel), getting up often (get an aisle seat!), and wearing compression socks (I love this set), but I have lots more tips in here.
What did you put on your baby registry?
I basically researched like crazy and sourced YOU GUYS for the best recommendations of what to put on our registry – and these were the best baby registry must-haves I found. Click the photo to read the post!
Are you avoiding alcohol? Caffeine? Sushi? Deli meats?
A book I highly recommend every pregnant woman (or woman wanting to get pregnant soon) read is Expecting Better. Seriously, Amazon Prime it right now. I’ll wait. The book dives deep into the actual data behind some of these pregnancy myths and recommendations and what we should *actually* be avoiding, versus blanketed societal recommendations that don’t always make sense. She dives into the real data and numbers and it’s fascinating!! She explains everything from the real effects of caffeine to the surprising dangers of gardening. It’s a perfect book for moms who want to enjoy a healthy and relaxed pregnancy, backed by real research.
My rule of thumb is to do what my doctor says, what the research says, and what feels right for my body. Everything in pregnancy, like everything in life, is a choice and a weighing of risks and benefits. Choosing what to avoid and what to eat during pregnancy is a completely personal decision – and it’s different for everybody. Your doctor might have different advice than someone else’s doctor, and the books you read might have other advice completely. In the end, it’s your decision to make. For you and your baby. Do the risks outweigh the benefits for you personally? Then maybe avoid it!
It’s important we all remember that people can make their own health decisions, based on THEIR bodies, and it’s not on anyone else to judge what the right decision is for THEM. I really don’t understand people who judge others’ pregnancy decisions… do the research, then do you! I believe all of you mamas are fully capable of taking amazing care of your little baby in the womb, however best works for you!
I highly recommend reading Expecting Better, and reading up on the research on all of these things, but I’ll let you know what I’m doing personally in case you’re curious!!
Food pregnancy rules: My thoughts!
The main reason behind most pregnancy rules are that it’s very hard (and often unethical) to study the effects of certain things on pregnant women. So you’ll see a lot of “no amount of X has been proven safe in pregnancy”, because they can’t *technically* prove that is completely safe, but often they haven’t seen it be unsafe either. Which leads to pregnant women following an endless set of ‘rules’. The biggest of which surround food. The biggest concerns for food-borne illnesses in pregnant women (that can affect their fetuses should things go really south), are Toxoplasmosis and Listeria (which you can read up on any current outbreaks here) from unwashed fruits and vegetables, raw milk cheeses (stay away from Mexican queso fresco), and raw and undercooked meats (doctors agree to definitely stay away from rare steak, but recent research actually suggests that staying away from raw fish is not as necessary, interestingly, as pregnant women are no more likely to get food-borne illnesses from raw fish as you are, and aren’t likely to get sicker than you are either). The two main concerns about raw fish are mercury levels (so it may be a good idea to avoid the highest-mercury fish on this list) and seafood-related illness, aka food-poisoning. This can come from eating shellfish harvested from contaminated waters, or from eating any raw fish that has been kept in non-sterile/cross-contamination-prone conditions. Instances of the latter are very rare (around 1 in 2 million, per this New York Times article) — so, TLDR: as long as the raw fish comes from a sanitary source, it’s actually fine for pregnant-lady consumption.
Deli meat As far as deli meat, it’s only turkey meat, and the environment of the deli (and meats, prepared foods, etc sitting out for hours on end) that is something to worry about. Not other meat types, interestingly! If meat is fresh, nitrate-free, or made at home, it doesn’t seem to be too much of a concern. However, many sources say to eat your sandwiches steaming hot, to kill any bacteria, out of caution. Which is what I’ve been doing if I’m craving a sandwich (not a huge craving of mine!)
Raw meats I try to have medium to well-done steak (out of an abundance of caution of food-borne illnesses).
Alcohol I personally am currently avoiding all alcohol, and have been since finding out we were pregnant, because I don’t feel myself craving it or needing it at all, but I have zero judgment for anyone that chooses to have a glass of wine every now and then (it seems like, from the research I’ve read, and what doctors say, this is completely fine, so you do you!!!!).
I do miss wine a ton (you guys KNOW how much I love it), but I also am personally so looking forward to my first glasses of wine after birth so much, that I truly don’t mind waiting for them. Being ‘dry’ for 9-10 months is like a goal I’m waiting to achieve and be rewarded for. I also feel like leading up to the pregnancy we were having SO much fun (with the wedding, our honeymoon, living in Portugal and Colombia for months at a time) that we were drinking a lot, and, while we were fully enjoying every second, it’s been good for my body to have a break anyway!! It’s also going to be a great excuse to buy all the expensive wine my heart desires next summer (sorry I’m not sorry, Kenny!) because I waited nearly a year for this, dammit! This is a total personal decision, but I think the wait will make the wine at the end of the pregnancy that much sweeter (can someone let Kenny know to have a bottle of nice champagne chilled in the hospital room? Thx).
By the way, I recently had some of this non-alcoholic champagne and it was SO good. Tastes weirdly like the real thing – which I never thought could be real. Highly recommend for all you pregnant ladies. There’s also this incredible non-alcoholic beer that tastes just like the real thing (not even kidding).
Caffeine Caffeine is allowed for pregnant women – up to 200-300mg is the standard that most doctors say these days, although recent research even suggests more. I wasn’t craving coffee at all in the first trimester, but in the second trimester I’ve been having a homemade oat milk latte a day! I absolutely love my morning coffee routine, and I put my collagen in it as well (which the doctor okayed!).
Sushi One of the hardest things I’ve found to avoid has been sushi. I have been avoiding it so far, out of the tiniest food poisoning risk (and personally the fact that I got awful shellfish poisoning a month before pregnancy), but it honestly doesn’t feel right to avoid. Fish is SO good for the baby, and sushi sounds SO good. So I’ll have vegan rolls (way better than vegetarian rolls, find a vegan sushi spot in your neighborhood, it’s SO good!!), or I’ll have a bite of Kenny’s and take out the fish. Not the same, but scratches the itch. For now, that’s fine, and I’ve been eating lots of cooked fish for those Omega 3’s. But, now, after reading all the research, and about how many cultures around the world actually encourage raw fish during pregnancy, I actually don’t really agree with staying away from raw fish altogether, as long as it’s from a highly sanitary and fresh source, so we’ll see!!!
Pregnancy skincare Any retinol products are banned during pregnancy, and my doctor recommended stopping them leading up to trying for a baby, as well. You’re also not supposed to use any benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, or a bunch of other skincare ingredients you can read more up on here. I have been staying away from all of these ingredients out of caution. BTW – I actually was still able to get a hydrafacial because they have a pregnancy safe version at the spa I go to where they switch out any pregnancy-unsafe skincare ingredients with pregnancy-safe ones! This was a game changer for my skin which went through the RINGER during pregnancy with pregnancy acne – especially in the first half of the pregnancy. As far as fighting it, and other pregnancy skin concerns, these are my favorite pregnancy-safe skincare products.
Anyway, that’s what I’m personally doing. For now! It may change and my opinions already are changing the more research I do and hear from doctors. But everyone is so different!! I have zero judgment on others’ pregnancy decisions, and I don’t see why anyone would. So if you’re reading what I’m doing and judging, or seeing what a friend is doing and judging, please do all pregnant women a favor and check yourself. And check the most recent research, not what your cousin Suzy said she did when she was pregnant 10 years ago, because what’s recommended changes all the time!!
Do you feel the baby? When did that start?
I definitely am feeling the baby A TON. Like, I think it’s going crazy in there sometimes. The doc says this time of beginning of third trimester, you feel the baby a lot, which is SO much fun. It’s like it’s already here with us!!!! It has been reacting when there are loud noises, like waves crashing on the beach, March Madness on TV (hah), and things like that – which is so fun to feel. I really started feeling it distinctively around week 20. It’s definitely an active little cutie, apparently, according to our ultrasound technician, who could barely get measurements because the baby was moving so much, and putting its limbs in every which direction. I feel it most at night when I go to sleep and then around 3-5AM – LOL – so I don’t know what that says for our sleep schedules once he or she is here!
Do you have anxiety over pregnancy weight gain?
Fear or anxiety over pregnancy weight gain is something society puts on women and it’s absolutely awful.
Personally, I don’t have any anxiety over my weight gain, This baby and I have already put on 20-25 lbs and I honestly feel great about it! I am so excited to grow more. Of course my body is changing drastically – I’m growing a HUMAN, after all!!!!! The fact that we, as women, can create, grow and bring babies into this world is an actual miracle. It’s amazing. And I have never been more appreciative or in awe of my body. It’s all so beautiful.
I get excited about weight gain and knowing I’m on track and that the baby is healthy. That is ALL that matters!!!! I eat everything the baby craves and I honestly feel great and healthy at this point. Kenny is a big part in making me feel beautiful each day, no matter how swollen or large I might feel in a given moment, he reminds me that I’m more beautiful than ever. I’m so grateful for that.
I also try very hard to never compare myself to other pregnant women. Which trust me is easier said than done!!!! I don’t know any pregnant friends who haven’t stalked other girls’ bumps on instagram to see how theirs compares. But the worst thing we can do is compare ourselves to others (ever), but especially in pregnancy, when everyone grows, gains weight, (and bumps!!!) at such a different pace. Even though I had been gaining a normal amount of weight, I had essentially zero bump until 20 weeks or so. I just looked totally bloated! And I still get told (by some random uninvited opinions from strangers) that my bump is still ‘small’ by some people’s arbitrary standards, while my doctor says assures us that there is absolutely no ‘normal’ sized bump – they’re all completely normal, and mine is not considered ‘small’. Our bodies are all so beautifully different before pregnancy, so really, why would pregnancy be any different? Every body, and especially every pregnant body, is so beautiful!
Still, I know it’s definitely hard not to compare to others that are pregnant due around you, and be shocked at how different everyone’s pregnant bodies are. But just try to keep in mind that every doctor stresses that everyone gains weight differently and has a different size bump at different stages of their pregnancy. It actually has nothing to do with the size of your baby (as people who carry small can go on to have huge babies, and people who carry big can go on to have small babies. Which is crazy, and something I never realized before!) My doctor says if you have a smaller bump, it is just likely due to things like it being a first pregnancy, having taller height, strong stomach muscles keeping the womb close, the shape of your uterus, etc.
Did you travel to Colombia and Mexico while pregnant? Weren’t you concerned about Zika?
Yes! And Anguilla for our babymoon. We celebrated my birthday in Mexico in Punta Mita (which is where we told my parents!) and we had a photoshoot in Colombia shooting the Colombia Collection when I was 14 weeks pregnant.
Zika is currently not as big of a concern as it was a few years ago. There are no big outbreaks happening, thank goodness. My doctor had zero concerns with me traveling while pregnant, as long as I wore bug spray. Out of caution, doctors still recommend you wear bug spray every day if traveling to Central or South America (DEET is completely pregnancy safe!).
That being said, I was still researching the hell out of all of the Mexico and Colombia Zika #s ahead of my trips, like the nervous newly pregnant mother maniac I was. So I understand being concerned! But each time I researched in depth, I came up with it not being a valid concern. And I wore lots of bug spray (and had Kenny wear lots of bug spray – since it can be transmitted through the man, too!) to make myself feel even more at ease.
Anguilla has no active Zika so I felt really safe there, but still wore bug spray!
Wearing this swimsuit sized up!
What are your favorite maternity clothes or brands?
I put all my favorite pregnancy products and must-haves into this post here. I haven’t been buying a lot of maternity-specific brands but more maternity-friendly and bump-friendly dresses, etc. I have a bunch of my favorite babymoon outfits here. Around the house, I wear a lot of sized up pajamas (I’ve been living in these ones), and bumpsuits!!! When I go out, I’ll wear a dress like this one with a denim jacket over it and I feel very maternity-chic, but am SOOOO comfy. (I wear a M in this brand, BTW), and these resort dresses (of course). I think dresses are the way to go during pregnancy (at least for me, so comfy!) and I have not touched a pair of jeans – LOL.
Here are a few dresses I’ve bought & loved recently!
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Are you finding out if your baby is a boy or a girl?
We are not finding out! Kenny and I decided to keep the fun surprise of whether our baby is a boy or girl until the day of the birth!!!!!!! (Crazy, we know!) But we truly don’t have a preference either way, and cannot wait to find out in June!! It’s fun for us to hold out on the surprise! What do YOU think it is???
Any weird cravings? Aversions?
First trimester, I definitely felt nauseous (and was completely bed-ridden some days, I’m sooo glad that trimester is over) but was lucky that my nausea wasn’t so bad that I wasn’t able to eat. In fact, eating made it a lot better. And I craved ALL THE CARBS (still do!!!). I actually think the BEST part of being pregnant is by far being able to eat everything you want, and feeling great about it. Craving waffles at 2pm? GO FOR IT. Your baby wants this! I’ve had pizza deliveries at 3pm after eating lunch and before dinner that confuse Kenny so much, haha. In general, my cravings change week to week, and I’ll go from living off of Mexican food, to living off of waffles, to wanting nothing but smoothies. It’s crazy. As far as aversions, the only weird one is seafood pasta – not seafood, not pasta, but SEAFOOD PASTA. Disgusting to me right now and throughout the whole pregnancy!!!!!
What other questions do you guys have about pregnancy? Leave ’em in the comments!
Check out these other blog posts:
The best baby registry must-haves
All about our Anguilla babymoon