What to expect when you're expecting


macrumors 68030
Original poster
Dec 21, 2004
So as I've already mentioned in a couple of threads here today nbs2 and I are expecting our first child. We just found out a few days ago and it's been a whirlwind since then. Exciting, scary, overwhelming, scary, happy, scary....

In any case, we've seen the threads on what to expect after birth, but I thought we would petition the fine folks of MR for advice on the actual pregnancy. We've checked the websites and been doing some reading--even ordered that book "What to Expect When You're Expecting" which should arrive next week. In any case, we would love advice, commentary, or whatever on what to expect for the pregnancy and even the labor.

I've already noticed I'm more tired, slightly more nauseated (not much--yet--thankfully), more thirsty, and more active in the bladder. We're somewhere between 2 weeks and 1 month along. We're in the process of hunting down an OB and hospital. A lot of things ahead of us and it would be nice to know if we're missing anything. :)

Thanks in advance!

EDIT: I'd love advice on Category C medicines. We mainly found out because I went in to the doctor for water in my ear that wasn't draining. She gave me Nasonex which is Category C. She said I shouldn't worry about dangers of it, but I read the pamphlet on it that came with the medicine and it was a bit scary about the lab animal testing. The pamphlet mentioned that the pregnant body develops its own corticosteroids so I wondered if I should just keep holding off on the nasal spray or not. I plan on asking the OB when we find one, but thought I'd ask here as well since I think there are a few people here in the medical field....


Staff member
Aug 16, 2005
New England
Congrats to you and nbs2!

The book you ordered is really quite good and provides lots of information for every stage of the process, we both read it cover-to-cover a few times during my wife's two pregnancies...

For my wife, picking the right OB was a key part of things. So get references from other local parents, and interview a couple of them before you settle on one... Take nbs2 to meet those on the short list.

Also look around to the hospitals they practice in. For our second kid we had moved 30 miles away and went back to our old hometown because we liked their delivery practices better than our new local hospital...



macrumors 65816
Feb 10, 2006
I have never had a child (I am 16, and male, so that is probably a good thing...) but all I can say from watching baby videos with my parents is never wake a sleeping child...ever. The house is on fire? Put out that fire by whatever means necissary, but do not wake up that baby! My parents in the videos would wake me up during a nap, and their non-video (current) selves would wince and yell "Why did we do that?!"

Hope that helps! :D


macrumors 68030
Original poster
Dec 21, 2004
Thanks for all the congratulations. We've been trying for a little while now so we're definitely happy about this.

balamw, thanks for the advice. We'll definitely interview the OBs and take a tour of the hospitals. We've never done that before, but that's definitely in order this time. We've gotten a few trusted recommendations from a few people about good places around here. Funny enough, our physician recommended NOTgoing to any hospital in our county. :( Oh, well. Good thing we border on three different counties and a fourth one is close by....


Moderator emeritus
Mar 16, 2004
Andover, MA
floriflee said:
EDIT: I'd love advice on Category C medicines. We mainly found out because I went in to the doctor for water in my ear that wasn't draining. She gave me Nasonex which is Category C. She said I shouldn't worry about dangers of it, but I read the pamphlet on it that came with the medicine and it was a bit scary about the lab animal testing. The pamphlet mentioned that the pregnant body develops its own corticosteroids so I wondered if I should just keep holding off on the nasal spray or not. I plan on asking the OB when we find one, but thought I'd ask here as well since I think there are a few people here in the medical field....
First of all, congratulations!

Second, my wife's a labor and delivery nurse (with over a decade of experience) and was in med tech before that, and she says that Category C meds are proven safe for pregnancy - in fact, there aren't many of them, but the ones that are so labeled are just fine for you to use (within the suggested dosages [edit: and following the advice of your doctor]). However, you're smart to wonder about such things, and never assume a med is safe without specifically asking or verifying it - like, for example, you should not take Motrin at all after 20 weeks. Period (in emergency situations, it's somewhat OK before 20 weeks, but not after). And, normally, you shouldn't take aspirin barring certain rare situations.


macrumors newbie
Jun 15, 2006
Hurricane Alley (Florida)
Congrats. My wife and I had our first baby 9 months ago and nothing has been the same since. But it's a good thing. We are loving every minute of it. My wife did a natural birth and didn't go to a hospital. We went to mid wives for the prenatuls and delivered at the Miami Maternity Center. The Discovery Health Channel even filmed the birth. Every once in a while we pop in the DVD we have from The DHC and look back. It is something we will cherish forever. My wife didn't take any drugs or anything during her pregnancy except her prenatul vitamins that she took everyday.

The book you got is a good book. I might also recommend The girlfriends guide to Pregnancy and believe it or not Jennie Mccarthy has a couple books that are AWESOME! Belly Laughs and baby Laughs. she has a hysterical outlook on her pregnancy and then life after the baby is born. My wife cracked up while she was reading it and has re read the books several times.

My wife had morning sickness in the early mornings (around 3am) and was extremly tired for about a month. They both wore off after a couple months.

It is going to be a great experience for the both of you. One bit of advice is to try and do some things that you have wanted to do. Even if its just sitting around doing nothing. Once that baby is born its going to be on hell of a year, but well worth it. :)

We wish you the best.


macrumors 68000
Feb 23, 2006
I saw a "Pregnancy for Dummies" book in the Acme today and I defiently had a WTF moment.


macrumors 68030
Apr 14, 2005
Congratulations!! Being male I can't give much advice, but I can tell you what
I observed/heard from my wife during her 2 pregnancies. You'll be more forgetfull..., take up more space in bed..., and you'll generally in a very happy mood. It's a wonderful time for both of you. Oh, drink a lot. And yes you will have to go to the toilet a lot. When my wife was expecting her first, we were hiking in the 3 sisters area in Oregon. She must have seen (and used) every tree in that area. Concerning the actual delivery, things are different here in the netherlands than in the US I guess. A large percentage of expecting parents prefer to have the baby at home, with the aid of a delivery nurse of course.
The best advice I guess is: have fun, enjoy it, try to keep up your normal life (work, hobbies, sport) as long as you are able to enjoy it. Oh, do enjoy the few more months of being just the two of you: go out, have dinner... Things will change rapidly...


macrumors 68000
May 4, 2005
New York
Childless by choice, so no parenting experience here ... still want to wish you both the best with your pregnancy and in the future. You might want to lovingly reflect on all the good sleep you've enjoyed in the past.


macrumors 65816
Sep 19, 2005
South of the border
Sleep. NOW!! That, or try staying awake for 72 hours to get a feel for what the next six months of so of sleep deprivation will do to your brain.

And take lots of photos/video - your own memory won't be up to it.

apart from that - w00t!!, your old life is done, get ready for things you never thought possible (and a few you never hoped would ever be).


macrumors 6502a
May 23, 2005
London, UK
Congratulations to you both. The best thing ever. And I hope it all goes smoothly and enjoyably for you over the coming months. So, floriflee, you have asked what you might expect. I think that you will be swamped with good advice from all sources, but I would like to spare some time for your husband, nbs2. The expectant fathers get a bit marginalised......

Things that a non-PC expectant father might meet - based on personal experiences.

As the pregnancy progresses, you will feel increasingly tired. There is no obvious physiological reason for this, but consensus is that your wife, also suffering, is not so able or ready to do all the household chores. You should relax when you can, maybe have a regular nap, and wait until after the birth, when you can expect/hope for things to revert to normal. Do not get distressed if the house is relatively untidy - your wife has other things on her mind. Maybe you could get get together with some friends at the pub, go out and watch some sports? A change is as good as a rest.

Maybe you will notice that your wife is no longer able to do all the heavy lifting, service the washing-machine or change the light bulbs that she could do with ease before the happy event. Should you accept the challenge, these tasks can be learned - reference books from your local library are available - or you could always ask your neighbours' wives to help out. Do not be too proud to ask assistance from them. And it will not be too long before you are able once again to hold the ladder for your wife while she does the outside painting.

You will experience some changes in your diet. There is nothing wrong here, just that your wife will be experiencing some minor changes to her own body and will maybe not be up to providing you with the same quality meals that you are used to. Some gentle and logical reasoning with her may result in you either having more take-aways or adjusting to a zero-calorie diet. Or a plate of chocolate-coated broccoli thrown in your face. Alternatively, you could get together with some friends and manoeuvre events for their wives to feed you 'properly'.

Similarly, you may find that your beer or wine no longer tastes the same. This is a strange epi-phenomenon and I could only put it down to either the change of diet, see above, or that there is just none in the house - stocks have not been replenished. Tut tut!!! A simple solution here is to get together with a bunch of friends and go to the pub, where there is bound to ample supplies of your favourite drinks to keep your equilibrium constant.

Mood swings are not uncommon. You MAY find that you are more sensitive to what you perceive as your wife's irritability, often following her requests for you to lift some heavy things, service the washing machine etc. Do not worry; there is nothing sinister here, and you may well find that going to the pub with some friends, or a sports venue, will get your good spirits back in no time. Be relaxed with yourself throughout.

I will leave out the business of the actual birth - you will meet enouch scary stories to last a life-time. When that time comes, just remember that the real and intense discomfort of standing around in the delivery room will pass soon enough and you will be able to get back to your routine of watching sports and stuff without any lasting ill-effects.

These were the most dramatic changes that I noticed - maybe they will be different for you. But whatever you meet along the way, I do urge you to try not to blame your wife too much for not being able to perform her traditional role; she will have her own self to look after and just might not have the strength to help share in the enormous changes which you are undergoing and to take some of the strain from you. If things get too bad, remember that you will always have a bunch of friends to accompany you to the pub and who will provide a constant source of sympathy.

I do wish you both the very best. It is all such a magic time. :)


macrumors 603
Jul 3, 2004
Mac since 7.5
Congratulations, florifee and nbs2! Awesome news!

Representing the male [i.e. lesser] portion of our heterosexual partnership, I cannot lend much practical expertise on what you can expect while expecting, florifee.

I will only say this: Get out as much as you can now, as much as you're feeling up to. There will come a time (not too far off really) when you will glance at each other and wistfully recall those evenings when you could go to a movie or go out with friends at the drop of a hat. Those days are long gone, and will never, ever (evar) return.
Over the next month or two, the excitement of sharing your joyous news will subside, and you will naturally begin to focus more on the preparations for bringing a new Mac user into your world. Getting the nursery ready, picking a crib, tiny clothes (only parents can appreciate how long it can take to fold a full load of baby clothes), a brand of disposable diapers (and, most critically, a Diaper Genie!).
Don't forget to make time for each other. It will be hard to do for a while, as your whole world becomes the baby. Plan nights out at least twice a month, if not more. Prepare for the cost of dinner and a movie to go up drastically as you fork out $7-12 an hour for a decent babysitter.

It's all worth it, and then some.:)


macrumors 68030
Original poster
Dec 21, 2004
Thank you everyone for the advice! UKnjb I'll try to be more understanding of the hubby's feelings. :D

It's kind of weird to think about having to care for a little person 24/7. I mean, I've been caring for the hubby for a while now, but to have to care for another one?? :D We'll definitely try to get in some things that we've been wanting to do before the baby comes.

Thanks, again!

EDIT: One thing I just thought of.... Does anyone have any recommendations for a good pregnancy workout program/video? I'm a bit leary of keeping up my present program because running outside tends to make me very hot (not to mention the risk of falling). I'm cutting out half my yoga/pilates program since it puts a lot of strain on the abdomen, and I wonder if my aerobics video is too high impact because I usually end up winded at the end of it--I've kind of been breaking that one up into sections and resting for a couple of minutes in between each one. Essentially, I want to try and stay within the normal recommended weight gain limits, and I fear that what I've been doing for exercise is too strenuous for a pregnant person. I'm afraid that if I stop exercising altogether then I will just blow up like a balloon. So if anyone has any advice on that I'm all ears.


macrumors 68020
Sep 27, 2005
Location: Location:
Get the epidural. There is no trophy if you dont. Theres plenty of "get all the sleep you can" blah blah blah and its all true but you are never really ready for birth so dont freak too much. The What to expect books are a fantastic help. Go ahead and also pick up the WTE the first year as well as WTE the toddler years. Its good to plan ahead. Remember that every child advances at different speeds so be a little loose with the books.

Key things to remember-
Its your child! so if you are getting advice that doesnt sit well with you tell the advisor to f**k off. Even if its your own mother.

Be sure to register for gifts that you need or else your gonna get 200 expensive little cute outfits youll never use...

dont tell everyone what you are gonna name them. everyone will have a comment and it will only piss you off.

and remember, ITS YOUR CHILD! and raise them how YOU want to not how others do. Youll be amazed how many people are gonna try to tell you how you should raise them. (including me:rolleyes: )

Get a digital video camera now and start documenting. it will give the hubby a project to be "involved" and your gonna want to wacth every second of the experience a few years down the road.

congrats and good luck!


Staff member
Apr 18, 2004
Somewhere over the rainbow

I had one baby, now a happy, healthy, handsome 14-yr-old boy, and this is what I can recall as being important:

I did a yoga class for pregnant women, it was great.

If you are at all nervous during pregnancy, like about how the baby is doing etc, just go have an extra check-up. Don't feel silly, just do it. Keeping yourself relaxed and confident is important. (You may not be a worry wart, but I was!)

If you're the type who likes reading and preparing (like I am), read everything you can get your hands on, but remember that you have to be open to the fact that anything can happen during the birth. Women who are dead-set on a "natural" birth (whatever that may be) can find themselves screaming for drugs (and happy to get them), and women who are terrified and want a high-tech birth surrounded by modern medicine, can discover that it really was quite okay after all, they did just fine on their own steam.

If the system where you live permits it, find an OB/doctor/midwife (here in Norway, it's mostly midwives in a hospital setting, you get whoever's on duty when your labour starts) whom you like and trust, but don't get freaked out if circumstances and timing mean you end up giving birth with someone else attending.

Enjoy, and get out to do the sorts of things you like to do NOW, while there's still time!!

Edit: OOOHHH, Freeny had some good advice there. I had an epidural, after being sooo sure I wanted a no-drugs birth, and boy was I happy. Five pain-free hours in the middle there. Only disadvantage was not being able to sense when to push. But I think the epidurals one gets today are better. What I learned was not to be dead-set against anything, but be open to whatever happens.

And definitely, trust your gut as far as how to do things. You'll get more well-meaning advice than you ever thought possible, but this is your baby - do it your way.


macrumors 6502a
May 23, 2005
London, UK

Walking and swimming are THE ideal exercises for pregnant women and can be undertaken throughout. I wonder why you are thinking of dropping your pilates, apart from the discomfort to your abdomen. If you enjoy them, can you modify your routines, as pilates are also considered both good and safe exercise?

If I get any more information, I shall post it! And maybe you can get nbs2 to join you in the exercise? :D


macrumors G4
Jul 4, 2005
Please don't wrap the kid up in cotton wool, he'll grow up soft and litigious if he doesn't realise early on that accidents happen, kids fall over and break arms and legs, they will find small things and push them up their nose, they will get into fights. Just make sure the kid knows that the real lesson from accidents and mistakes is to learn from them, not go looking for someone to blame.


Moderator emeritus
May 1, 2005
Congratulations to the two of you! :D I definitely have no personal experience with any of this, but if this thread is anything to go by, expect to feel overwhelmed. :p


macrumors 68020
Aug 12, 2003
At home
Expect people to say - that's normal

I grew to hate this little phrase.

But it's true............... expect the unexpected.


macrumors 68030
Mar 31, 2004
A geographical oddity
I suppose I should respond to the many posts as well. I haven't disappeared, but with studying for the bar, I do actually have to be productive (oh to be at work!).

There have been so many kind and helpful comments, that I'll just try to address some of the major points.

First and foremost I should thank UKnjb for the helpful adivce on how to cope with Lori's pregnancy. I've already noticed a bit of a downturn in the quality of the lunches that she packs for me and was wondering what was happening. Now I understand. And last night coming home from the grocery store, I ended up carrying most of the heavy goods. I really should take a break from all of this.

Chundles - your advice is briliant! Even with a dad who will have his license (assuming I pass the bar) to practice law, I will do my utmost to ensure that she learns personal responsibility. I really do believe that people need to learn for themselves. Of course, I know that as soon as she (until, if it is there, the Y chromasome kicks in, she's a she...must be biologically correct) is functionally mobile, I'll have the place looking like an insane asylum with all the padded walls and such. But, I really am going to try and instill a bit of comon sense into her.

freeny, I think Lori is going to kill both us after your suggestion that we video tape everything. I was plannig on waiting until she began to show, but you are right! I must start now! Every moment that she is out and about will be recorded for posterity! Actually, I am planning on posting more information on our website. Right now, parts are out of date and the podcasts are boring...nothing like an impending baby to make things fun. Plus, now we will have more to talk about than "so...our week was good....um.....we had a good week."

balamw, I was fortunate that my concentration in health law had some classes where the professors are practicing lawyers. I've been able to obtain much more clinical recommendations from him (X hospital is good, but anywhere you go should have a Level III NICU; Y doctor is popular with physicians, Z doctor is known for small practice, high avilability; etc). We've got the list of hospitals down to two and the OB is fairly short (maybe 3 or 4). We will begin our investigation soon.

And zelmo, you're right! I totally forgot about her being a Mac user. I need to get a new machine! And does anybody know how to child proof a keyboard? I'd like to make it crumb/spill proof. Or maybe a special child keyboard for the Mac? I've seen them for windows, but I'd like to keep the stat button out of the house.

Everybody else who has offered words of conratulations, encouragement and advice, thank you. Lori is making me get off of her machine (ahh yes....the bad reception of the PB...), so I will make an effort to thank you all later!