My Preterm Labor Event and What I Learned

My Preterm Labor Event and What I Learned

Preterm labor isn’t something I was expecting. All signs pointed to a pregnancy of 40 weeks or more. For 27 weeks and 9 days I was in a low-risk pregnancy. Then 28 weeks hit, and something changed. I started experiencing bleeding and contractions. I called my doctor, and he told me to come in so they could assess the situation. Sure enough, my body was experiencing preterm labor symptoms, and we needed to slow it down. I was ambulanced to one of the best maternal fetal medicine units in the state, and measures were taken to minimize the contractions, and to get baby ready for birth (just in case he decided to come early).

After 24 hours in the hospital, contractions had stopped thanks to a magnesium sulfate drip and rest. Baby boy did great the entire time, kicking and dancing up a storm all weekend, with zero evidence of fetal stress. The care team was even impressed at how active he was, and how fully developed he was for 28 weeks. At about 40 hours in the hospital, the doctors decided to discharge me, since the baby and I were doing great. Thankfully, I was able to stay pregnant, and baby boy is still a movin’ and a shakin’.

Preterm labor is never something you plan for, but incidentally it happens in about 12% of all pregnancies. Even though I was seemingly low-risk, with virtually no medical or lifestyle risks for premature labor, I experienced an event. What does this tell me? Well… not much actually. Even the doctors weren’t entirely sure why the contractions and the bleeding started. But I learned a lot from this experience, and my hope is that by sharing what I have learned that another mama-to-be will feel more confident and secure in her pregnancy.

Preterm Labor Event What I Learned

Amenities Are Secondary to Care

This sounds rather obvious, but there is an important point to make here. When I first found out I was pregnant, I knew that we would be moving at the start of my third trimester. I began to look around at the various hospitals of the locations we could be moving to, and I fell in love with St. Luke’s in Duluth, MN. The hospital recently renovated their maternity floor, and it looks amazing.

It has tubs for birthing in just about every room, and they focus on baby-centered care, meaning that after your baby is born (as long as everything is okay with mom and baby), baby gets to stay in the room with mom and dad. Plus, it actually had decent seating and sleeping areas in each suite for your partner or your family members who would visit or stay with you.

When I saw that setting, I knew that’s where I wanted to deliver. I mean, what more could you want from a delivery experience than to relax like a queen after you’ve given birth?

I’m more clear minded about the whole situation. Yes, amenities are great, especially when you are in recovery. The real work happens during labor and delivery, and a pull out sofa with extra support isn’t going to help keep you calm while you’re pushing.

What you need is an experienced care team who will go the extra mile to make sure you and baby are safe, calm, and healthy. When I was admitted to Yale New Haven’s Maternal Fetal Medicine Unit, I immediately recognized the level of professionalism and concern for my welfare. This team truly wanted to make me as comfortable as possible, and ensured that every single one of my needs were cared for. They explained every procedure to me; what it was, why they do it, and what side effects to watch for.

The care team at Yale New Haven was beyond anything that I could have hoped for in the event of a threatened preterm labor. I didn’t care that I didn’t have a birthing tub or that my birth plan wasn’t finished. I knew I was in good hands, and that this team was going to keep me and my baby safe.

Simplify Everything

The last thing you want when you go into labor is a complicated checklist of all of the things you need to have with you, or items you need to tell the doctors. The more stuff you bring with you (mentally and physically), the more complicated your delivery is going to be.

Listen, I am all for having an empowered birth experience. You should absolutely be able to get what you want when it comes to giving birth to the human you have been carrying. I want that for you. And I want that for me. Simplifying my expectations and minimizing my “requirements” are going to dramatically increase the level of calm I experience when labor actually happens.

Why? Because I won’t have to grapple with the mental load of potentially struggling with my care team to get what I want out of delivery. This is not about what I want. This is about keeping my baby healthy; allowing both of us to recover in the most optimal way possible.

With that being said, I know that there are tons of birth plans and birth strategies out there to choose from. My recommendation is that if you feel that a birth plan is in your best interest, use one. Keep it simple. The last thing you need is to create this highly detailed birth plan that can’t be followed because of an emergency situation that is out of your hands.

Try to keep your birth plan to less than 2 pages. This will not only simplify the process for you, but for your care team as well. It will be easier to keep everyone on the same page when there aren’t a handful of pages to keep track of.

Preparedness Goes a Long Way

An emergency is after all, not something you plan for, but it doesn’t hurt to take extra steps to make sure you’re ready. I had a pretty good idea of what to bring in a hospital bag for labor. Since I was only 28 weeks, I didn’t have one packed. Thankfully, I was able to stay calm and grounded as I evaluated what I really needed in case I did need to stay overnight. Which thankfully, wasn’t a lot. Again, simplification helped a ton here.

I knew that if I was going to be staying overnight, the hospital would have pretty much everything I needed in the realm of clothing, but I also wanted to make sure I had a couple things in case I needed them, i.e. a zip up sweatshirt, deodorant, a brush, contact solution/glasses, and chapstick. Honestly, that was all I needed. I packed a couple pairs of underwear just in case, but the hospital has disposable ones so I just used those for my stay.

What I’m getting at here is that being prepared can help quite a bit when it comes to minimizing the stress of an emergency situation. Not only does physical preparedness help (packing a go-bag), but mental preparedness as well. Researching procedures and terms ahead of time makes a huge difference when it comes to understanding what your care team is talking about.

This is not to say that you should research every single obstetric procedure known to man and know the exact risk factors and all other scary stuff that goes with it. That is is not the point. The point is to educate yourself so that you are equipped with the knowledge to make the best decisions for you and your baby when the time comes.

Read as many pregnancy and labor/delivery books as you can throughout your pregnancy to help prepare you for the changes your body goes through, your baby’s development, and possible procedures you may need in order to keep both you and baby safe and healthy.

Mindfulness & Affirmations Really Work

Throughout the preterm labor event, I was scared. I didn’t know what was going to happen, but I knew that if I stressed myself out unnecessarily, that the stress would only affect my baby to his detriment. My solution was to pray, to be mindful of my mind and my body, and to affirm to myself that whatever happens will happen, and that my baby and I will be safe. These are some of the affirmations I said to myself while I was in the thick of uncertainty.

  • My body knows what to do to keep my baby safe.
  • This event is temporary. This stress will pass.
  • I am confident in myself and the health of my baby.
  • I will keep my baby safe and calm by breathing deeply, and embracing feelings of love and security.

In addition to prayer and strategic breathing exercises, these affirmations helped me to keep my breathing steady, and my mind clear. Yes, I was nervous, and yes, I had fears. But I knew that by repeatedly praying and saying these affirmations that I would ultimately keep myself calm and collected, and be able to make better decisions when necessary.

What I’m Doing Differently

The preterm labor scare taught me a lot of things about myself and what is truly important to me. Because of what I have learned, I’m doing a few things differently than I had planned.

  1. Prepare an emergency bag for my car. Something simple with a change of clothes, a few toiletries, and a couple of snack bars and bottles of water. This bag will be helpful in any emergency, regardless of whether or not I’m pregnant.
  2. Keep a copy of my medical records with me if possible. I want to keep a small record of recent events on my Emergency ID on my phone. That way, if something happens while I’m out and about or alone, whichever hospital I am sent to will have my information and will be able to make more informed decisions about my care. This information will include medications, current medical status (i.e. pregnant), allergies, medical directives for care, etc.
  3. Get a better support system in place. With my husband in the military, there is no telling whether I will be on my own or not. Thankfully, with us moving closer to family, I will have more support options, but this event made me realize that I’m really terrible at making in-person support networks. Online? I’m a freaking pro. But in the real world I’m pretty limited. I’m so thankful for the people who helped us out during the worst of it, seriously you guys are amazing. But I know that having a few more people in the pipeline that can offer assistance is going to ease quite a bit of strain off of my mind.

 

Thank you for reading my experience with threatened preterm labor. I truly hope that this finds someone where they need it most, and can help them to manage the emotions that go along with this event.

As the founder of Mama Brilliance, Megan is an avid writer, reader, and self-professed coffee snob. You can find her in northern Minnesota with her family, exploring the great outdoors and dreaming of breakfast food.
Pregnancy Safe Yoga Workouts You and Baby Will Love

Pregnancy Safe Yoga Workouts You and Baby Will Love

Exercising while you are pregnant is important for your physical and mental health. Yoga during pregnancy is a favorite among many mamas-to-be for a few reasons; primarily because you can do it just about anywhere, and you don’t need any special equipment to do yoga.

Yoga has a ton of benefits, regardless of if you are pregnant. During my pregnancy, I found yoga to be the most beneficial exercise routines because of the focus on breathing and flow, as well as strengthening through body weight. Yoga can be pretty intense, but pregnancy safe yoga is intended for pregnant moms looking to stay active without over-doing it.

You can find a prenatal yoga class just about anywhere these days, but I wanted something I could do in my home on days when I didn’t feel like seeing other people. Introvert problems. Here are a few online pregnancy-focused yoga workouts that you will love.

Pregnancy Safe Yoga Workouts You and Baby Will Love

Sarah Beth Yoga

Fun fact, my dad was the one who shared this resource with me. Sarah Beth Yoga is on Vimeo and Youtube, and she has my favorite prenatal yoga series. There are 3 free videos on Youtube, and a paid program that you can purchase on Vimeo, and let me tell you, the paid program is AMAZING.

Let’s go over the free videos first. There is a morning warm up, a 20 minute prenatal workout, and a night-time wind down routine. These are my go-to workouts because they are quick, comprehensive, and I feel amazing after I do these routines.

The paid program is amazing too. For $75, you get four 45-minute workouts that are safe for all three trimesters. And you get a PDF guide that can help you to vary your workouts to help prevent you from getting bored or feeling like your workouts are stagnant. The PDFs also teach you how to modify your poses for greater comfort and safety as your belly grows.

Yoga With Adriene

I’ve been watching Yoga With Adriene videos for a couple of years now, and I love how she is focused on the concept of finding what feels good. Adriene’s videos are primarily on Youtube, but you can subscribe to her paid channel here.

Adriene has a prenatal series that highlights a yoga workout for each trimester, plus some lady talk with Adriene and one of her close friends who is in her 3rd trimester. It was kind of fun to hear another woman’s thoughts on her pregnancy, and the workouts were great too.

There is also a PDF guide for safe yoga practice during pregnancy if you subscribe to the paid Find What Feels Good by Yoga With Adriene.

Prenatal Yoga Center

The Prenatal Yoga Center is exactly what it sounds like: an online yoga resource for pregnant ladies! The Prenatal Yoga Center has a ton of free videos that are focused on specific trouble areas that many women struggle with during pregnancy, i.e. sciatica, hip-openers, carpal tunnel, etc.

For me, sciatica has been a capital B during my pregnancy. The hip opener video was a huge help, as was the Alleviating Back Pain video. The other great thing about the Prenatal Yoga Center is that they have in-person classes in the New York City area. So for NYC mamas, definitely check out what they have to offer!

Gaia Prenatal Yoga

Gaia is one of the most well known international yoga organizations. I hesitate to call it “corporate” because yoga is so far from corporate it’s ridiculous, but you can typically find Gaia products in stores like Target or Walmart. Gaia also has online yoga videos, including this Prenatal Yoga series with Shiva Rea.

These workouts are also pretty short, less than 20 minutes each, but they are comprehensive and help you to focus on breathing first before posing. Which is SUPER helpful for breathing through labor and delivery pains.

 

What workouts are you loving while pregnant?

As the founder of Mama Brilliance, Megan is an avid writer, reader, and self-professed coffee snob. You can find her in northern Minnesota with her family, exploring the great outdoors and dreaming of breakfast food.
4 Pregnancy Symptoms Worth a Belly Laugh

4 Pregnancy Symptoms Worth a Belly Laugh

I’m sure you’ve heard that pregnancy symptoms can be pretty crazy. Mood swings, morning sickness, exhaustion, just to name a few. But pregnant women and women who are trying to conceive should know about more symptoms than what is most commonly discussed. I want to talk about the stuff that requires you to be able to laugh at yourself. Like a lot.

This blog is not for the feint of heart. We’re gonna talk about vagina stuff, poop, and even unsightly body hair. My hope is that you will read this and it will 1) prepare you for what is to come during your pregnancy, and 2) give you a laugh and let you know that you’re not alone in your crazy pregnancy symptom experiences.

Enjoy ladies!

Underpants

Congratulations! Your underwear is now brought to you by Elmer’s School Glue! But seriously… The discharge is real ladies. Your body chemistry changes so much when you’re pregnant, and because of those changes your underwear will suffer. It will suffer greatly.

The reason why vaginal discharge increases during pregnancy is because your vagina is working on protecting you and baby against infection and irritation. For many women, discharge will increase gradually throughout the pregnancy, peaking in the 3rd trimester. This means multiple panty changes per day, or you could just invest in Kotex and help keep the stock market prices up on panty liners; ‘cause you’re gonna need a lot of em.

Just remember, discharge is normal, but be on the lookout for funky stuff. Anything that seems out of the ordinary for color or smell might be something to talk to your doctor about. Yeast infections can happen during pregnancy, so be sure to chat with your doctor if you think something is off.  

Tummy Troubles

Okay internet. Here’s the real deal. Digestive problems during pregnancy are no joke. In fact, I would argue that digestive issues are probably among the most reported pregnancy symptoms and side effects. We all hear about morning sickness, but it is so, so much more than that. I’m talking bloating, gas, heartburn, nausea, vomiting, and poop. Your digestive system goes cuckoo for cocoa puffs during those 40 weeks. Hormone changes are a huge part of the symptoms, but as baby grows, your uterus pushes your organs into weird places. When those organs are displaced, it puts pressure on them. Thus, the crazy symptoms.

For me, this has resulted in some moderately embarrassing bodily functions, and one massively humiliating trip home from a burrito place. That’s right friends. You inferred correctly: I pooped myself. Thank God it happened while I was pregnant, because it gave me a good excuse to throw a pity party for myself (a.k.a. eat even more food thus increasing the potential for more poop). And I don’t think my husband would have felt as bad for me if I wasn’t pregnant; so he took pity on me and threw away my pants of shame so I didn’t have to walk out to our garbage can butt naked. Such a good man.

But the best part of this whole pooping-my-pants thing was finding out that I was not alone. When I told my best friend Raewyn about it, her reaction was not, “You’re a disgusting animal, you belong in a barn because you’re basically just a cow.” It was instead, “I need to read you this blog post,” and she proceeded to read The Day I Pooped My Closet from Five Kids is A Lot of Kids. This is why I love Rae. She read this blog with conviction, and hit all of the important aspects of the blog with hilarious accuracy, which told me that this was not the first time she had shared this content with a pregnant friend.

So basically, if you pooped yourself while pregnant, it’s okay and you’re not alone. Maybe just invest in some brown pants?      

Hair

No, I’m not talking about the full, flowing locks that so pregnancy books claim that women receive during pregnancy. I’m talking about body hair, people. On your face, on your legs, on your arms, on your lady parts. Erry’where.

For example: sideburns. I love me a thick, luscious pair of sideburns. Someone who can rock sideburns? David Tennant. George Harrison. Elvis. Men in general.

Someone who does NOT want to rock sideburns? Me. Me, I don’t want them, please get them away from my face.

The worst part is that I’ve always had a little bit of peach fuzz on my face. No big deal. I’m a human, and peach fuzz is normal. But pregnancy has graced me with a lovely set of sideburns that not only go down the side of my face, but seem to connect to my hairline behind my ear, creating this lovely ring around my ear. So that’s nice. Honestly, nobody notices this ring around the ear but me, but it’s still a crazy pregnancy symptom that makes me laugh.

So what to do if you have excess hair that you’re not that fond of? Get yourself an appointment with an esthetician who is comfortable waxing pregnant ladies. Especially in the late 2nd and into the 3rd trimester. Because having to take breathing breaks while you’re shaving your legs is a little bit ridiculous.

Smells

Heightened sense of smell is a pretty common pregnancy symptom. But did you know that the way your body smells is also a side effect? Yup. Remember those body chemistry changes we talked about that cause increased discharge? Well they can also make your body smell a bit differently.

Case in point: I was relaxing on the couch with the dogs, and all of a sudden I got a whiff of something that smelled a bit like a mild cheese. And I was like, where is that coming from?!? At first I thought it was the dogs. I gave them each a hearty smell-down, much to their delight because they assumed I was playing “dog” with them, so they were ALL over that little scenario. But it wasn’t the dogs.

Maybe something spilled on the couch? Nope… nothing. What the heck… Omg… what if it’s me? It can’t be me. I shower or take a bath every day, there is no way I smell like dairy…

Ohhhhh wait a minute. Dairy. Breastmilk. Maybe my milk is coming in?

Yep. Not even a week later, I had leaky boobs. Which is another lovely side effect of pregnancy. But we’ll get into that in another post.

Changing body smells can be attributed to changing hormones, but it can also result from the food you are eating. What you put into your body can definitely change your body chemistry, especially if it is highly acidic or highly basic. And because you have a heightened sense of smell, you will be more sensitive to what your body smells like.

 

These are just a few symptoms that many women experience during pregnancy that require a decent sense of humor. I would love to know, what were your weirdest pregnancy symptoms that made you laugh?

 

As the founder of Mama Brilliance, Megan is an avid writer, reader, and self-professed coffee snob. You can find her in northern Minnesota with her family, exploring the great outdoors and dreaming of breakfast food.
Baby Registry Road Map: Which Registry is Right for You?

Baby Registry Road Map: Which Registry is Right for You?

Bun in the oven? Super exciting. Creating a baby registry? Also super exciting! Getting ready for baby means pulling together a list of all the items you will need to get you started on the road to brilliant parenting. Baby registries are awesome because they allow you to keep a running list of all the items you will need, AND friends and family have access to it so they can help you out with baby item procurement!

With all of the baby registry options to choose from, how do you know which one is right for you? Should you stick to just one registry? Or are multiple registries in your future? Only you can know which registry will be right for you and your growing family, but I’ve compiled a few of my favorite options to help you narrow down your search. Let’s dive into the baby registry roadmap!

Baby Registry Road Map: Which Registry is Right for You?

*Mama Brilliance is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Babylist

Don’t want to limit yourself to just one registry? Don’t! Babylist was designed with just that concept in mind. The creators realized that there are many registry options to choose from, and trying to pick a single option could be stressful for moms-to-be. Babylist combines the concepts of a universal registry with a few other goodies.

Baby List Logo

Here are a few of the features:

  • Add anything from any store to your registry.
  • Add other registries to your Babylist registry.
  • Chrome extension for easy registry add-ons.
  • Help & Favors registry options for things like cooking, cleaning, or walking the dog.
  • Cash Funds for just about anything. Think: doulas, housekeeping help, childcare, etc.
  • Mobile app for on-the-go registry additions.
  • A customer support team that can’t be beat.

The Cash Funds option is one of my favorite aspects of Babylist. Being able to register for a Doula Fund or a Babysitter Fund is priceless in my opinion. I also love that you can register for help and favors. This is especially helpful for friends and family who want to help you get everything you need for your new baby, but might not be able to contribute financially. They can sign up to help out with meals, laundry and other housework, or even just stop in to help out with the little one so you can catch some extra Zzzs. ‘Cause you know you’re gonna need it.

Target

I love you Target. And I know you love Target too, good reader. In fact, I would be willing to bet a pretty penny that one of the first things you thought after you found out you were pregnant was, “I wonder when I can start my Target registry…”.

Yes?

Thought so. That’s why we are friends. Target is a great place to register for baby items because they have quality products, and a pretty good selection to choose from.

Here are a few of the features:

  • 15% Off coupon to stock up on baby items.
  • Universal registry to add items from other websites.
  • Gift tracking, to see who gave you which items. Plus, it helps you track whether or not you sent a Thank You to the gift giver.
  • Robust checklist to get your registry-building skills warmed up.
  • Group Gifting option for gift-givers to contribute towards larger items.
  • Registry app with barcode scanner for easy additions. Super helpful for if you see an item in store that you love, but don’t want to waddle your pregnant-self all the way back up to the service desk to get a registry scanner.

Target also offers a Welcome Packet in store when you register. If you register online you’ll probably get a little coupon book in the mail that lets you know how to get the Welcome Packet, and maybe even a giftcard for creating a new registry. I received the coupon for the giftcard, but these promotions are changing all the time. If you’re reading this a few months from the publish date you might get something different!

Babies R Us

Ah, Babies R Us: the one-stop-shop for all things baby. Babies R Us is one of the most formidable baby supply stores on the planet. Their registry program is also pretty amazing. I love that there are so many helpful features for new parents, such as a consultation with a Babies R Us associate and in-store classes.

Here are a few of the features:

  • 10% Cash-back through the Endless Earnings program.
  • 1:1 Registry consultation with a Babies R Us consultant.
  • Classes and events held in-store regularly for new parents.
  • 10% Completion discount for the items you’ll need to complete your baby-ready checklist.
  • 1-year return policy on all items.
  • Mobile registry via the Babies R Us app.
  • Price match guarantee.
  • Free shipping on all purchases of $29 or more.

My favorite aspect of the Babies R Us registry program is definitely the Endless Earnings program. You get 10% back on everything that is purchased from your registry; including items that you purchase. About 10-12 weeks after your baby’s due date, Babies R Us will send you an e-gift card with the appropriate amount to your email. This is super helpful for picking up any new items you might need for your growing bundle of joy. Think: bigger diaper sizes, a few new clothes, or maybe a special splurge item that you didn’t receive at your shower. Treat yo’self!

Baby Registry by Amazon

Oh yes friends. Even Amazon has a registry option. Baby Registry by Amazon is a phenomenal universal registry. You have access to register for literally everything and anything that can be sold on Amazon. If you’re thinking that might be overwhelming to sift through, Amazon has actually made it pretty easy to hone in on baby-centric items for your registry.

Baby Registry by Amazon

Here are a few of the features:

  • A universal registry that can add items from any website.
  • Over 270,000 items to choose from.
  • 90-day return policy.
  • Mobile registry via the Amazon App.
  • 10% Completion discount for the items you’ll need to complete your baby-ready checklist.
  • Increased savings and bonuses for Prime members; i.e. 20% off diaper subscriptions. Cha-Ching.

 

If you’re already an Amazon Prime member, a registry on Amazon is practically a no brainer. And if you’ve been on the fence about a Prime Membership, now’s the time to get that gravy train a-rolling. The discounts are significant, and they make it super easy to get everything that you need for your new arrival.

More Options

The number of baby registries is, like, a lot, and I honestly didn’t want to overwhelm you with a ton of other options. Especially because I personally didn’t use any other registry options during my pregnancy.

However, I know that there are more options, and that some moms might want a quick run down of a few other choices. So just for you, mama, here are a few other good options worth checking out:

 

Which registries did you use when you were expecting?

As the founder of Mama Brilliance, Megan is an avid writer, reader, and self-professed coffee snob. You can find her in northern Minnesota with her family, exploring the great outdoors and dreaming of breakfast food.
The Most Loved Pregnancy Pillows

The Most Loved Pregnancy Pillows

 

Sleeping while pregnant is an interesting conundrum. For many women, getting enough quality sleep can be a challenge while pregnant. Pregnancy pillows can be a huge help for pregnant ladies who crave a better sleep cycle. Pregnancy pillows help to support your back, hips, and growing belly throughout the pregnancy, and honestly, they’re amazing. Once you have one you’ll wonder why you ever thought you could live without one.

Pregnancy pillows come in a few different shapes and sizes, and not all pillows are created equally. Let’s take a look at a few types of pillows and why they are the most loved options for pregnant women everywhere.

*Mama Brilliance is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

hiccapop Pregnancy Wedge

A nice compact option, the hiccapop Pregnancy Wedge was recommended to me by a friend, and I haven’t turned back since. Full disclaimer: this pillow is my favorite of all time. I wanted something that could provide enough support where I needed it, and still let me feel like I could share a bed comfortably with my husband. And at less than $25, it was hard to beat from a budgeting perspective.

I loved that this pillow was a bit more modular than some of the traditional pregnancy pillow options. You can use it for support underneath your back or belly, or between your knees for lower back support while side sleeping. It’s also great if you need a bit more low back support while you’re driving or binging Parks & Rec for the 8th time. Hashtag: Knope 2020.

Plus, the fact that it’s so portable makes it easier for traveling. I mentioned it in this blog too, but I literally wanted to buy one of these for my bedroom, my couch, and my car.

Pregnancy Pillow from Lavish Home

An amazing full-body option, the Full Body Maternity Pillow with Contoured U-Shape is pretty much the Rolls Royce of pregnancy pillows. I mean look at this thing!!!!

To be honest, I would probably buy one of these even if I wasn’t pregnant. The U-Shape is great for total-body support for back, belly, and knees. I also love that this pillow makes rolling over an easy transition. No more trying to move my traditional body pillow side-to-side as I roll over underneath the covers. Ridiculous.

The Contoured U-Shape pillow is also going to be great for nursing, because baby can rest comfortably on the pillow while you support your neck, back and knees. Plus, once baby is big enough, you know she’s going to love snuggling in this thing too. Who wouldn’t?!?

Leachco Snoogle Total Body Pillow

I love this pillow for a couple of reasons. The first of which: Snoogle is an awesome word, and I’m kind of obsessed with it. Secondly, the Snoogle Total Body Pillow is a bit more flexible for taller ladies like myself. It’s a bit longer and can be adjusted a bit more easily for leg length than some of the other pillows I shopped for.

It’s also a nice option if you’re looking for something that is lightweight. Weighing in at just over 3lbs, the Snoogle is easier to move around in bed or around the house if you decide to bring it with you to the sofa for a Netflix sesh.

The Snoogle also boasts assistance with minimizing heartburn and assisting with easier breathing while sleeping by keeping your head propped up at an ideal angle. While I haven’t experienced any pregnancy induced heartburn so far, I know that many moms-to-be struggle with crazy heartburn symptoms, I thought this might be worth mentioning to help my sistahs out.

Have you tried any of these pillows? Which was your favorite? Let me know in the comments below!

As the founder of Mama Brilliance, Megan is an avid writer, reader, and self-professed coffee snob. You can find her in northern Minnesota with her family, exploring the great outdoors and dreaming of breakfast food.