This month our littlest turns one. The past few months are in heavy rotation in my mind. I’ve been looking at pictures while my heart simultaneously bursts at the fact that my baby used to be so small and, well, babyish. In between my efforts to press pause is a longing for the baby stage to continue.
And every so often my mind will backtrack a bit further to the time when I was pregnant. My pregnancy was extremely difficult. It mirrored the experience I had the first time around. With my second child I knew what to expect because I had done this before. Even so, it didn’t make the constant sickness, dizzy spells and the host of other ailments that had everyone (including me) feeling sorry for me any easier to tolerate. Nevertheless, each day I thanked God that my baby was OK. Each time I heard/saw her heartbeat or felt her move was comfort to my worrisome heart but there were also other things that gave me comfort during this difficult time. Among them were small gestures made by my husband that not only showed his love for me but made those 39 weeks a little more bearable.
The older our baby gets the more often we get asked if we are going to do it again. Me being pregnant again isn’t in the cards for us but I am grateful for the effort my husband made to show me love throughout what felt like the longest 39 weeks of my life. Today I am sharing 12 simple things you can do to show your pregnant wife love:
My husband cooked the majority of dinners during my pregnancy. I hated the smell of most foods and often felt too sick, weak or exhausted to prepare meals. I appreciated him doing most of the cooking. If your wife is the one who normally cooks dinner, taking over is a great way to ensure she is able to get a little extra rest.
Fatigue, nausea and a full-time work schedule left me wanting to do anything but clean. I was grateful for the days my husband did my laundry, washed the dishes and helped clean up around the house more than usual. Cleaning up can allow your spouse more time to rest or get a chance to have some “me time.”
3. Give her a massage
While I wish he offered more, I appreciated the occasional foot and back massage. Giving your wife foot rubs and back massages is a simple yet sweet way to pamper her.
4. Help more with older child(ren)
Getting our oldest ready for school is primarily my role. Since she isn’t a baby, it didn’t require a lot but it did require things like multiple wake up requests, cooking breakfast and making lunch (unless it was pizza, hot dog or carne asada day). Whether it’s packing lunches, making sure the kids are dressed or getting breakfast made before you leave for work, taking on a little more of the load during your wife’s pregnancy can be a huge help.
5. Volunteer at your child’s school
During my pregnancy, I didn’t volunteer in the classroom as much as I did the previous year. A lot of times I was too sick and struggling just to get through work. While he couldn’t always, my husband volunteered a little more than usual and it meant a lot to me and our daughter. If your spouse normally volunteers at your child’s school, offer to help out on behalf of your family.
6. Go shopping
I know my husband isn’t big on shopping with me and it drove me crazy when he was adamant that we didn’t need the “fancy” baby bathtub when I thought it was perfect (his choice is big and bulky and is taking up space in the bathroom to this day). Yet I loved when he would go with me to pick up things for the baby and subsequently carry and load everything in the car.
7. Take maternity photos
It was really important to me that we took a few photos to remember my pregnancy. This was the first one my husband experienced having met me when our oldest was one. I wanted a photo that had my most favorite people in it. You may not be into photos and some maternity photos require you to pose in ways that you normally wouldn’t, but if it means a lot to her, why not do it?
8. Get her what she’s craving
My husband knew that I didn’t really need Funyuns, chocolate Pop Tarts with ice cream, watermelon or all the random things I asked him to bring home on his way from work but he obliged my requests. He was happy that I was keeping something down. The best part is sometimes I didn’t even ask; sometimes I would open the refrigerator to find bite-sized pieces of watermelon or chocolate coconut water because he knew eventually I’d ask for it. If it isn’t harmful to her or the baby it’s okay to oblige your wife’s pregnancy cravings.
9. Say no to plans
Sometimes I would feel really bad over the fact that I missed out on so much because I was tired and/or sick. While life didn’t stop just because I was pregnant, I appreciated those times when my husband knew that a certain outing might be too much for me. In some instances he respectfully declined and stayed home to keep me company or went on our behalf. Be understanding of the fact that your wife may not feel up to a lot of the things she enjoyed or did pre-pregnancy.
10. Don’t delete shows on the DVR
My Mr. is notorious for deleting my shows on the DVR. I record everything I want to watch in hopes that one day I will get to, but when I was pregnant I was nocturnal and watched TV and movies in the middle of the night while everyone was sleeping. If your wife has a favorite show, don’t delete it from the DVR — even if it’s 80% full. If there’s a show you think she will like, record it. She will appreciate you when she is up at 3 a.m. watching back-to-back episodes of Giuliana and Bill.
11. Tell her she’s beautiful
Most days I felt anything but beautiful but loved hearing it from my husband. It was reaffirming to know that I still rocked his world despite my nose being bigger and my walk becoming more like a waddle. Don’t assume she knows you still find her attractive. Take the time to tell her.
12. Go with her to the doctor
Anytime he could he would go with me to the doctor. It not only showed interest in our baby but in me. He would ask the doctor for insight on what kinds of things we could do to help me better deal with my discomfort and I loved seeing his face when he saw our baby on the sonogram or heard her heartbeat. It felt good having his hand to hold when we both sat scared in the ER and to hold my pee cup during the routine appointments. It may seem like no big deal, especially if this isn’t your wife’s first appointment, but some women welcome their husband’s company at their pregnancy exams.
Each of these small gestures was an attempt to help make me more comfortable during my pregnancy and minimize the chaos that sometimes ensued in our household. They also were ways that my husband showed me not only that he loved me but that he was in my corner — that pregnancy, much like anything we have encountered during our marriage, would be something that we got through together.
What are some other things husbands can do to show their love for their wives during pregnancy? Did your husband do anything to make you feel special?