welcome to my journey thru yet another pregnancy, while attempting to raise a toddler. Today’s tale tells of my attempt to keep both my toddler and myself alive during the first trimester (and arguably most of the second trimester). The daunting task of 2 under 2 begins with conception, and continues as a game of survival.
Pregnancy, a love hate relationship. The early days of the first trimester can really be an unenjoyable time (aside from the bliss and excitement of a little on the way). For the second time mom and more, we’ve got this down. Surviving the first trimester is manageable, even if you have a rambunctious toddler to chase after.
You’ve stashed almonds at the bedside table; you keep your hair up in the morning; you take as many naps as possible; you carefully negotiate the appropriate caffeine intake; and skillfully manage to drink without drinking. But it doesn’t all go according to plan, because the second time around, there’s a toddler in the midst.
Toddlers add a whole new level to surviving the first trimester (or for me the first 20 some weeks). Toddlers are never ending. Toddlers are loud. Toddlers are gross. Toddlers are exhausting. Pregnancy with a Toddler is a whole new game.
Here’s how I’m surviving the first 20 weeks with a Toddler.
- Squeeze Pouches & Simple Snacks are your best friend. Let’s face the facts, an eating toddler is disgusting, so keep it simple. No need to to make it yourself, just hit up Costco for a couple of cases. You’ll probably want 2-3 cases, at least one a day.
- Vaseline & Face Masks – say what? Poopy diapers are a pregnant women worst nightmare. If you’re partner, BFF, or random stranger isn’t available to sort that out for you, a layer of vaseline under your nose should keep the odour at bay (and lunch down). Just keep breathing your mouth, you’ll be fine. And whatever you do, don’t’ take a curious gander at it.
- Netflix & Paw Patrol – I know screen time before 2 isn’t recommended, but whoever said that didn’t realize the world we live in. If you just don’t have the supportive tribe of family to come and entertain the toddler beast occasionally, Netflix will do. It’s okay. We are all doing it.
- Sleep when the Toddler Sleep – serious. Why are you up right now? Go to bed. I regret every nap and every evening I stay up. When you can’t keep down a morning cup of coffee, sleep is your best friend.
- Get out of the house – find activities that burn off toddler steam, and boost up your energy. Personally, I’m a HUGE fan of my local play cafe. I get to sit back and enjoy a tea while my toddler runs wild in a play space. Don’t take the toddler to places with spaces that he can’t be – that’ll wear you out. Find places he can run without being watched too closely. Or team up iwht your other mom friends.
- Don’t forget about you – my first pregnancy I had weekly appointments with different care professionals to keep me feeling good, but it’s not se easy. Find yourself a babysitter, part time childcare, or a reliable mom to watch him for an hour or two, and get out. trust me, i get how hard it is to leave your toddler, and to ask for help. but I’m working on it, and you can to.
- Don’t stress about making changes – you wanted to wean your toddler? you wanted to get him to sleep in his own bed? You wanted him to toilet train? Perhaps now isn’t the best time to do that. If you’re not feeling up for the task, they wont be either. I truly believe these big things and others will happen on their own time. Right now, it’s just not the time to do it.
At the end of the day, surviving the first trimester with a toddler is all about choosing the easiest path of resistance. Don’t’ fight too hard to be the perfect mommy. You’ll just wear yourself out. Do what needs to be done to keep the food down, keep the screaming down, and have a break. And sometimes that means living on fruit pouches and car naps, but we’ll make it thru this. He has the next 18 years to have beautiful well-balanced meals prepared and to sleep in his own bed.