A Healthy Green Pregnancy – Surviving the First Trimester

The first trimester of pregnancy often brings morning sickness, exhaustion, lack of motivation, and just a general unwell feeling. The days are long and can feel almost impossible to get through. Here are some tips for surviving the first trimester.You may be wondering why I’m starting a pregnancy series – well, the obvious answer is, of course, because I’m pregnant! Yes, Baby #3 is due in June of 2012! We got to see the baby and the heartbeat on an ultrasound on Monday, and that first glimpse of a new baby is just so unbelievably amazing! We are feeling very blessed and happy, but honestly, I have been feeling terrible for the past six weeks. Which explains my quietness around here, thanks for your patience and for sticking with me!

But, this past week, I’ve really turned a corner and things are finally looking up (instead of into the toilet!). I finally have energy to write again, so I wanted to start a frugally green pregnancy series to talk about all things green and frugal and baby related!

So, where to begin, but at the beginning with the first trimester!

Surviving The First Trimester (Kind-of)

I will say again, that I’ve had a really rough past six weeks.  Really rough.  Worse then either of my first two pregnancies, and this time around I had to take care of two kiddos while try to keep up with working from home at the same time, and not to mention the regular household stuff of cleaning and cooking. It is an understatement to say that it was not fun.

And I’m not really sure that I’m qualified to write much about making it through the first trimester, because I barely survived through it. There were days, even weeks, where I felt like I couldn’t even get off the couch, and literally couldn’t get anything done. And then I would get so overwhelmed and feel like such a failure when my husband came home from work and the house was a mess and there was nothing to eat.

So, here are just a few of my thoughts for somehow making it through those first tough weeks. And remember that every woman is different and responds differently to pregnancy, some women feel great, and some deal with sickness and exhaustion throughout their whole pregnancy. Don’t compare yourself to other pregnant woman – that is the last thing that you need during this season of your life!

Give yourself A LOT of GRACE!

The reality is that you are pregnant, and you won’t realistically be able to do all of the things that you were doing pre-pregnancy, and you shouldn’t.  Your body is doing the hard work of growing a new baby and creating a nurturing environment for them to grow and thrive in, and that, some days, is enough.

Go really easy on yourself. Cut back on activities, and social engagements. Do the bare minimum of cleaning – if you can even manage that. And give yourself quick and easy meals that can be prepared quickly without much thought, or gagging. And REST! Your body needs it and you won’t be able to even attempt to function without it!

Ask for Help!

Although you might not be ready to tell the whole world that you’re pregnant yet, think about confiding in a few close friends or family who can give you the help and support that you’ll need to make it through.

My husband was my main, and most amazing, support.  He not only dealt with my crazy emotions, he also picked up all of my slack around the house, and he even wrote a blog post for me one day! And of course, he still had his regular job to do too. I absolutely could not have made it without his loving support and tangible, amazing help.

Other people also helped along the way, and I really appreciated it.  My parents came one day and turned the almost two bushels of apples we had picked right before I found out I was pregnant, into applesauce for us.  Having the support of people around you in those early weeks is invaluable.

Remember that it is just a Season (if you can)

This one was really hard for me, because when you feel like you have the flu and can’t get off the couch week after week, you really think that it will never get better. And my husband had to remind me of this often, and even though I’ve already been through this two time before, it was still hard for me to believe him.

But, I am sitting here writing this to say that you will feel better.  You will get to the second trimester, and the nausea, sickness and extreme exhaustion will pass (God willing!).

There were days over the past weeks when I would get upset because I just wanted to feel normal again, like my regular self.  I didn’t like feeling so bad (who does?), and I didn’t want to not do anything, but I just had no motivation.

But then, all of a sudden, as quickly as the feeling bad and exhaustion had come on at the beginning, I woke up one day and felt completely different. Better.  And it was such a good feeling to be back to my almost normal self.

So, try to remember that the first trimester is a season, and it will pass. It will get better.

And if you need some ideas for how to keep your kids entertained when you can’t get off the couch, check out my ideas over on Babble.

If you’ve survived a rough first trimester of pregnancy, what are some of the things that helped you through?

Read More in the Healthy Green Pregnancy Series:


I did pick a winner for the Dreaming of A Green Christmas Giveaway.  The winner of the Koko Lunch Tote is Ginny, ginnybcarl@.  Congrats!

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Be sure to come back tomorrow for Your Green Resource, I’d love to have you join with me! You can also connect with me on Twitter and Facebook!


  1. says

    Welcome back Emily! Congratulations! How right you are to say we shouldn’t compare. I was much sicker during my pregnancy with my son than I was with my daughter and I hate to say it, but she got to watch a lot of movies during that season. I couldn’t even read a book without it making the nauseau worse!

    • Emily @ Live Renewed says

      Thanks Alison! Yes, my TV is on much more often than I would normally like, but sometimes you just gotta do what you gotta do!

  2. Sarah says

    Congratulations! I love this article-describes pretty well how I’ve felt for the past few weeks since I’m also due in June. I’m eagerly awaiting the end of this season :) I am definitely looking forward to reading more in this series, the timing couldn’t be better!

  3. says

    Congratulations on your good news! I had a pretty rough first trimester. I dealt with it by doing very slow, relaxing yoga in a quiet room and plenty of rest. I struggled most with smells, so I spent a lot of time either outdoors or in a scent-free room (away from the kitchen!) I switched to fragrance-free everything and that really helped!

    • Emily @ Live Renewed says

      Thanks Kate, that is a great idea to do yoga. I definitely need to be doing more exercise, I’m sure that would help me feel better, but it’s just so hard when you’re SO tired!

  4. says

    First of all, congrats, Emily!! I had missed your posts, but I figured you just were focusing more on Babble (and that’s OK if it blesses your family more!). I hope for more children, but I cannot imagine the first trimester with 2 little ones! I let my older one watch way.too.much.tv during my first trimester with my second! Glad you are feeling better–and glad to have you “back.” :)

    • Emily @ Live Renewed says

      Thanks Erin! It’s good to be “back”! I did have to spend most of the little energy I had on Babble b/c that is my “job” now, but I definitely missed writing and interacting with all the wonderful readers here! The first trimester with two littles was definitely one thing that kept us from trying any sooner, and it definitely lived up to my worst expectations. Maybe that was part of my problem – I thought it was going to be bad, so it was – I always wonder how much our thoughts and expectations of something shape the way it actually turns out. Interesting to think about, but I’m definitely thankful that I’m through the worst! :)

  5. Esther says

    I just want to say that I really and truly know what you were/are going through! I am 17 weeks and I’m finally feeling more myself.
    I was very sick with #2 as well, but that time around I was very hard on myself and tried to hide how I was feeling. This time I DID give myself grace, and I asked for help. It was 10 times easier to get through those 3 months!
    Now I am focusing on the gift and miracle of new life and cherishing this special time.
    Congratulations to you!

    • Emily @ Live Renewed says

      Congrats to you too, Esther! Glad to hear you’re feeling better – it definitely makes it easier to focus on the joy of a new baby, I’m finally starting to be able to do that as well!

  6. says

    Congrats! I just gave birth to a baby boy a couple of weeks ago. I so wanted to to a pregnancy series on Eco-Babyz, then I discovered how little time I have between being exhausted and caring for a toddler – I never got to those posts! Looking forward to what you have to share and happy pregnancy!

    • Emily @ Live Renewed says

      Thanks Anastasia, and congrats on your sweet baby boy! I hope I have the time and energy to keep up with the posts! I wanted to post more about pregnancy when I was expecting my second, but we were in the middle of a very busy season of life then, and it just didn’t happen. I’m hoping to keep up with it this time around! :)

  7. Sciatica in Pregnancy says

    From the moment of conception the developing fetus needs lots of vitamins and minerals to ensure normal cell and organ growth and prevent congenital abnormalities. A pregnant mother needs adequate nutrition to grow both her baby and the placenta which is the life support organ for her baby.

  8. says

    Hi! I am so glad you are doing articles on natural pregnancy! Many moms need to be encouraged and informed of the “natural” means to childbirth, labor and delivery and the healthy, natural alternatives to take. I offer a free guide on my website for pregnant/labor/delivery moms to help guide them in ways to use all natural plant based products versus drugs. Thanks for reaching out and supporting moms to go green! Blessings to you and your little bundle of joy!

  9. says

    Congratulations! I look forward to your series.

    One of the reasons (though certainly not the only one) that I have just one child is that I was SO sick and SO tired–it was worst in weeks 4-12, but still I did not feel anywhere close to normal until the final month. One bit of advice that really helped me was this:

    When you feel bad about “not getting anything done,” look at the pregnancy book to learn what you ARE doing this week. Making eyes, for example, was very tiring! But my kid has beautiful eyes that work perfectly, so it was worth it!

    At one of the lowest points, I had an inspiration that was really miraculous, and thinking about that helped me afterward.

  10. says

    Hi there, just become aware of your blog through Google, and located that it is really informative. I’m going to watch out for brussels. I will appreciate in case you continue this in future. Many folks can be benefited out of your writing. Cheers!

  11. Jess says

    I know this is an old post but I had to comment. This post helped give me such hope. I’m pregnant for the 4th time (will be our 3 little one here in our arms though) and I am exhausted, nauseous and suffering from migraines. I can’t accomplish darn near anything beyond the demands of feeding, clothing and basic care for my 2 little ones (4 and 2 years of age) and my 12 hour a week job.
    Even as a 3rd time mom, knowing this too shall, pass I’ve been feeling so hopeless lately and this post relly helped thank you.

    • Emily @ Live Renewed says

      Thanks for sharing Jess, I can totally empathize with you, I was in a similar situation as you last year. I’m glad this post gave you hope, and I can tell you that it does get better!!


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