Actress, author, and cohost of daytime's The Real, Tamera Mowry-Housley is the body-confident, funny, and opinionated pal every mom-to-be needs. She talks unfiltered to AB about her pregnancy and the arrival of baby number two.
Do your homework
"When I was pregnant with my son, Aden [now 2], I acted as if I were preparing for the biggest test of my life. I read everything. I didn't want to be surprised. When you feel that way, you can start getting depressed because you think, 'Am I the only person who is going through this?' "
Be prepared for heightened senses...
"I feel so sorry for my husband, Adam. He wears cologne, and when I'm pregnant I can't stand its smell -- or even the scent of his deodorant. He takes a shower before bed."
...and crazy dreams
"My dreams get worse when I'm pregnant and close to my due date. I dream my baby's going to just pop out and fall. But everyone tells me dreams like this are normal."
Appreciate how neat your house is now
"I remember being in Aden's nursery before he was born, making sure everything was clean and tidy. I was with Tia [Mowry, my twin sister], and she started chuckling. When I asked her why she was laughing, she said, 'Enjoy the room and how it looks now, because once you have the baby, his stuff is going to be all over the place.' Of course, she was right!"
Be patient while shedding baby weight
"After Aden, I thought I'd have my flat stomach back in a month by nursing. But I didn't! I wondered, 'What is wrong with me?' But my pediatrician said that there are some women who keep on 15 pounds when they are nursing, while others burn fat like crazy. I could not lose the last 15 pounds until Aden was weaned."
Don't compare your bump with others
"Every woman carries pregnancy differently. I carry big. It doesn't matter how much I eat or exercise, I make big babies. Also, I showed a lot sooner with this second baby."
You're more tired the second time around
"When you're pregnant and have a toddler, you are sleepy all the time. With my first pregnancy, I could nap whenever I wanted to, and I had fewer dishes and clothes to wash. And while getting to the gym is hard in general, when you're a mom, it's so difficult. Plus, while everyone else may be kinder to you when you're pregnant, your toddler doesn't take it easier on you at all. You have to keep up!"
Playdates are good for the mamas, too
"Tia's son, Cree, and my son, Aden, are the cutest when they're together. When the cousins see each other, that's when Tia and I actually get a break, because the boys don't want us -- they just want to be able to play with each other."
Originally published in the July 2015 issue of American Baby magazine.