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How I Handled Morning Sickness

By Jeana Lee Tahnk

I'm one of those annoying people who just loved being pregnant. I didn't walk around asking people to rub my belly all day, but I was lucky to have great, routine pregnancies with all three kids, which I think is why it was such a positive experience for me.

All pregnancies were pretty similar in how I felt, how I looked and symptoms (indigestion up the wazoo), but the third pregnancy definitely hit me the hardest when it came to morning sickness. Or, in my case, 4 p.m.-to-bedtime-sickness. Just like clockwork, at 4 p.m. every day the nausea, sour stomach and flu-like feelings would set in and, of course, that was always the same time I'd have to take my kids to their afternoon activities and lessons.

Even though moving around sometimes was the last thing I wanted to do, I found it sometimes helped to be busy and distracted. It wouldn't give me a chance to sit and wallow in how bad I felt.

Aside from the all-carb diet-namely pretzels, wheat crackers and cereal-that I subsisted on during weeks seven to 14 of pregnancy, I didn't find many other foods to be helpful. I tried crystallized ginger, pregnancy candies, tea, lemons, saltines ... nothing did the trick. I also tried doing what doctors typically suggest, eating small snacks throughout the day, and it didn't work. Neither did eating big meals.

Since my late-afternoon sickness was always in full force by dinner time, I often just chose to go to sleep - if I was sleeping, I wasn't feeling gross. There were many nights when 7 p.m. was my bedtime and my two older kids stayed up later than I did!

I'm an independent person, but I used this opportunity to accept help. Lots of it: Someone else had to take over if I was going to bed when it was still light out!

I also did a lot of deep breathing, which I think calmed me more than settled my stomach. But relaxed and nauseous is at least better than wound up and nauseous.

And maybe because it was the third time around, I had more of an ability to deal with it mentally, because I knew that in the end, it would be so worth it. That was perspective I didn't necessarily have the first time around.

Morning sickness is no fun at all, but by taking care of yourself and letting others take care of you, hopefully you can get through the tough phase sooner rather than later. Just take it day by day. Forgetting those tough phases like morning sickness (and um, sleep deprivation, which I'm going through now) is a reason why parents go on to have other kids. I'm convinced of it.

And with how quickly time passes and how quickly these kids grow up, all those difficulties soon become a distant memory and all that prevails are the immense joys that parenthood brings.

Read More by Jeana Lee Tahnk

John? Mary? Apple? Indigo? How We Chose a Name

To Know or Not to Know: Gender at 20 Weeks

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