Updated: Mar 17
Here is a trimester-wise checklist for you, so that it helps you in planning your pregnancy, birth plan, and postpartum period.
🤷🏽♀️There is nothing much to do during this time. You would have to buy a couple of pregnancy test kits to test at home after you have missed your periods.
You can take the pregnancy test at home. If you are doubtful, you can wait a couple of days and take it again.
If you did not give much attention to your lifestyle habits, now is the time! You are going to grow a complete human within you, and that is a responsibility that you cannot take it lightly!
There is a high chance that most women would have stopped smoking, and alcohol when they start planning for pregnancy, and if you have not stopped, then this is the time.
Some women may not feel nausea or fatigue, while some women can experience bouts of it throughout their first trimester or pregnancy. In any case, you need to rest as much as you can.
If you work out, check with your doctor to know what kind of exercises can be continued and what should be paused or stopped for time being.
Prenatal vitamins may be prescribed for you, and commit yourself to taking them every day.
Many women experience breast changes, and you can plan on buying new bras. Mind you, your breasts will change during the course of pregnancy, so do not buy too many bras at the same time. As you may need different ones later!
Nausea might be at its peak or it can subside by the end of the third month too. Keep things handy that can comfort you during this time.
Look for prenatal classes. Check with your doctor before you join any class. Usually, it is okay to attend a prenatal class for low to moderate-risk pregnancies.
Sit with your partner and talk about finances. Planning your finances can help. And list down what you might need during pregnancy. Do not go overboard and buy everything you see, you might not need most of them!
If your fatigue is not improving, check with your doctor. Plan for support at home. It could be for cooking, cleaning, or a family member to support you. The number is not important, if you have one person who is willing to support you can be more than enough sometimes.
If you are planning to announce pregnancy at the workplace or to your friends and family, you can plan on doing the same.
Set a routine for yourself. It helps a lot during the later stages of pregnancy, and you can easily fall back to routine after childbirth too!
You can look for a Midwife if you want to. You might have to check for a couple of them before you finalize on someone.
Second Trimester (4th, 5th, and 6th month)
This trimester is usually considered the golden period during pregnancy. Most of the women may be out of nausea and fatigue and may be feeling a lot better overall. You can plan to meet your friends during this time.
Your prenatal classes are in place. And the best time to stick to your routine. Plan on the snacks that you can munch on after your workout. Avoid packaged foods. There are a lot of options available other than packaged foods!
If your pregnancy is a low-risk pregnancy, you can check with your doctor and plan for a babymoon during this trimester.
You can plan on journaling your thoughts. There are many options you can choose from for writing your thoughts.
Meditation and breathing techniques can help a lot. Check in your prenatal class if they are covering these topics else join these classes.
Practice good postures from now. It helps when the belly becomes bigger in the coming months.
Continue to take your prenatal vitamins.
Take walks in nature. Spend time with your partner.
Get good sleep. It is important you get good sleep, it helps your body rejuvenate.
Listen to good music. Soothing music. Your baby can listen to external sounds from the 5th month.
Read feel-good books, inspirational books, and spiritual books, you can learn a new language, you can read the books aloud.
Participate in creative activities like art, and craft, DIY activities, knitting, painting, etc.
Third Trimester (7th, 8th, and 9th month)
Join a breastfeeding session/workshop. It is important that you understand what and why breastfeeding is important. It is important to make an informed decision when the decision impacts someone else(baby).
Plan to attend a birthing session. Understand the techniques to soothe yourself. If you have a midwife, then talk to her about your preferences and pain management techniques.
It is important to be physically and emotionally healthy. The mind can play a very important role during your childbirth.
Take your prenatal vitamins. Complete your blood test scans required during this trimester.
Keep a list ready for your hospital bag just in case you need it before your due date.
Fix a hospital and check if they cover insurance. Check for all packages available in the hospital.
A pregnancy pillow can help you while sleeping during this trimester.
You can plan for a pregnancy photoshoot during this trimester.
Plan for the fourth trimester or the postpartum period.
Be mindful of posture.
Decorate your home.
Spend time with your partner. Soon you both will not have much time for yourself.
Spend some time with yourself. Make it a habit to be with yourself for some time in the day.
Bond with the baby. You can speak with your baby or just be with your baby bump, and try to feel the baby.
A plan can be either simple or complex. A plan is something that you want to do, and there is no right, wrong, or fixed format for the plan. Birth plans often change over the course of your pregnancy. It is also fine to change your mind about what you would like to happen when you are having your baby. Even when you are in labor, you can change your plan anytime.
Do not be hard on yourself to stick to the plan. Birth plans help to give you a sense of control and are an outline of your preferences during your labor and delivery. For example, who you want with you during labor, whether you want pain medication, or if you want the lights dimmed. You can include anything you think will make your labor and birth more comfortable for you.
Remember, that a birth plan is not set in stone and you cannot predict anything that can happen during labor. Be flexible and open to changes in plans at the last minute. Either you or your doctors may make specific changes based on the situation.
The fourth Trimester is also known as the postpartum period
The most important time in a woman’s life after the child’s birth is the postpartum period. Postpartum means post-delivery, the postpartum period is the time after your child’s birth.
It is the responsibility of both the woman and her family to plan for the postpartum period. Taking care of an infant is not the responsibility of one person and it never was a responsibility of one person, for the fact that the demand from the baby is high and the baby needs that care and environment which cannot be handled by a single person. They say it takes a village to raise a child. Yes, a village! It is not to raise a child, the child thrives on its own, the village is needed to handle other tasks like cooking, cleaning, bathing, buying groceries, taking care of the baby, or wherever the mother needs help so that the mother can heal herself and recover.
But, instead of focusing on the mother along with the baby, the entire focus shifts towards the baby, whereas the baby is looking for the mother to find comfort, and here we tend to forget that only if the mother is taken care of, can the child also be taken care of.
Irrespective of the type of birth a mother has, irrespective of whether the pregnancy to the delivery was traumatic or not, postpartum care is needed for every woman who is a mother. If we are not taking care of women now, then there will be a huge impact on the upcoming generations, and physical and emotional health will be compromised.