Second trimester sanity-savers

I am solidly in the third trimester now {where has the time gone?! I have a feeling I’ll be saying that a lot from now on} and thought I’d share some things that carried me through the second trimester. They say that the second trimester {weeks 13-28, approx.} is when you’re supposed to be glowing, at your peak of comfort and happiness and all that good stuff – I definitely enjoyed the second trimester more than the first, but hey, it wasn’t all sunshine and daisies!

Here are some things that I enjoyed and that helped me stay more comfortable during the second trimester.

{side note – I started writing this while I was still in the second trimester, but man, baby brain is no joke. I’m 34 weeks now!!}

Pregnancy pillow

It’s always on the list of “pregnancy must-haves” you see floating around Pinterest – the incredible pregnancy pillow! I really didn’t think I’d need a pregnancy pillow. I thought for sure I’d be fine with just an extra pillow between my legs and one under the bump, and was adamant I wouldn’t need to spend the extra money! Well, after a few mornings of waking up feeling achy all over and getting annoyed with the pillows in the middle of the night, I gave in. We got the Snoogle, which is basically a body pillow with curved ends so you can get allllll kinds of cozy. It feels like the perfect big spoon but doesn’t get too hot even in the summer heat. The pregnancy pillow is a game. changer. Also, my husband is jealous.

Clothes that you feel good in

Similar to the pregnancy pillow, I was going to try really hard not to spend money on a lot of pregnancy specific things, like maternity clothes, because I kept telling myself it was SUCH a short period of time. But no, as weeks went by and the belly started getting out of control {along with other things like my butt lol} I realized that I had to buy a few new pieces to accommodate all those changes.

Motherhood Maternity is a great place to start – they have just about everything in a maternity style – shorts, pants, dresses, work clothes, swimsuits, bras, basic tees and even underwear. Some of the stuff isn’t the best quality, so if you can find a store near you, that’s your best bet for figuring out sizing and fabrics, but they have fast shipping and good online coupon codes, too.

Gap Maternity had lots of good workout gear, and if you pay attention to the coupon codes they give online, you’ll rarely have to pay full price for anything. In the second trimester, before I got too big, I LOVED these leggings, especially while working out. It felt like a comforting hug to my stretching belly.

For jeans/pants, I actually found some great stretchy jeggings at Kohl’s. They look like real jeans and have a fully belly panel, which is what I prefer. They have a fair selection of other maternity stuff in store, too.

A lot of my LulaRoe actually worked really well for me, at least through the second trimester. All of my dresses, like the Carly, Amelia, and Julia, were really comfy and flattering to the bump. The Carly is still one of my favorites in the third trimester. Leggings are an obvious go-to, but I started to grow out of my usual legging size towards the end of the second trimester! Unfortunately some of the tops started to get a little tight towards the end of it, too, but I liked wearing an Irma top with jeans for a comfy second trimester outfit.


The first trimester, with all of its unknowns, was fairly stressful to me. I thought all that anxiety would just melt away in the second trimester, but surprisingly, it stuck around. Was that a kick? Shouldn’t I be feeling more movement by now? Will everything be ok at the big 20 week anatomy ultrasound? Just a few thoughts that kept popping around my head. I found this meditation app, Expectful, towards the end of my first trimester, and really enjoyed using it to calm my wild thoughts. It’s a pregnancy-specific guided meditation app, with lots of different meditations to help you through the various stages of pregnancy. Yes, you have to pay for it every month, but it was so helpful to me when I needed to re-center my mindset.

Compression socks

Hello, swelling!! As the temperature heated up outside, my ankles and feet decided to grow to twice their size. Suuuuper fun. Half of my shoes don’t really fit anymore and I feel like I have permanent cankles.

Usually, for normal pregnancy swelling, people recommend that you put your feet up as much as possible, drink extra water, cut the sodium in your diet – but none of that helped my swelling significantly. Massage is fantastic, but I can’t expect my husband to be there to constantly massage my sad sad feet!

In came the suggestions of compression socks – this is a thing for old people, right? Apparently not! Yes, there are the kinds you can get at the drugstore or even prescriptions from the doctor for super intense ones, but you don’t need to go there right away. I tried two different brands that I found online – ProCompression’s Marathon socks, which are geared towards runners, and Comrad, which are more geared towards people that spend all day on their feet, like nurses. I liked them both, but had to get a few different sizes and return the ones that didn’t work – they needed to be tighter than I expected for me to see any difference!

a VERY good look to walk the dog, featuring compression socks!!

PS – If you want to try Comrad, you can use this link for $5 off your order.


Again, “they” say you’re supposed to get an amazing boost of energy in the second trimester – I did feel more energy than in the first and can feel my energy fading in the third, but that boost was WAY overstated in my opinion.

It can be so easy to use the excuse of pregnancy to just sit around and relax, but honestly, movement can be so helpful to ease the aches and discomfort of your body going through so many changes.

Walking is the easiest place to start, but I had a hard time wanting to get out in the gross Ohio humidity. Luckily our local rec center has an air conditioned track you can use for free! Give me a good YA book on my Kindle, and I am set.

If you’re looking for something a little more intense than walking, I’d recommend checking out barre or pilates classes. I did Pure Barre before pregnancy, and tried my darnedest to continue barre through pregnancy. I failed miserably with that during the first trimester, thanks to having zero energy most mornings. But I made myself get up and go to class at least once a week for most of the second trimester, and part of the third trimester. It was SO important to ask the instructor for help with all the modifications – it can feel depressing to not be able to do as “complete” of a class as you’re used to, but safety during pregnancy exercise is key. After class, I always felt better than before.

“baby on board” barre socks!

I wanted to try prenatal yoga, but most classes in my area are held in the evening, which overlapped with my work schedule. I’d like to say I tried to use some of the MANY online yoga videos at home, but that would be a lie. I’m too lazy for that. I would recommend gentle stretching at the least, though, or buying an exercise ball to gently bounce on to ease those growing pains! I had bad pelvic pain from about 12 weeks to 22 weeks for some reason, and the exercise ball helped loosen up my hips and make it easier to walk up and down the stairs.


I will DEFINITELY be writing more on this in a full post, because I can’t stop raving about hypnobirthing – funny, because I haven’t actually given birth yet, but it’s already given us so much.

First, I know what you’re probably thinking – this sounds crazy! Getting hypnotized to give birth? Do they swing a pendulum in front of your face? Super crunchy hippie stuff… but I promise it’s not actually that wild. It’s just training your body to get used to deep relaxation and to use coping mechanisms like that during labor and birth in order to have a positive birth experience for both you and baby. More on it here.

Ben and I really enjoyed our hypnobirthing course that we took smack dab in the middle of the second trimester, and it made us feel SO at ease with the whole birth process. It was really nice to do relatively early on in pregnancy, because it’s the kind of thing that gets more comfortable and natural with practice. The course came with recordings of positive birth affirmations to listen to, which I am mildly obsessed with. They always calm me down when I’m feeling unsure about all this baby-making stuff, and are SO helpful to reframe the way I think about birth.

I would also highly recommend checking out The Positive Birth Company’s online course if you can’t find a local instructor – the price is wildly low compared to in-person courses, but you get so much out of it. The founder wants to make hypnobirthing more accessible to everyone, which is awesome. It’s got about 6 hours of videos, a course booklet, recordings, and lets you access a supportive Facebook group where you can read loads of positive hypnobirth stories. Pretty fantastic!

I know I will have a LOT more to write about in relation to the third trimester – my diagnosis with gestational diabetes, dealing with the PUPP rash {sooooo fun}, getting the house ready for baby, packing my hospital bag, etc. – so wish me luck in getting those written before the baby actually arrives 😉 you can always find me posting on Instagram if you’re getting impatient for blog posts!