No matter how much you hate pregnancy now, you just might miss it later. There’s a lot to hate—sore boobs, weight gain, unpredictable puking—but it doesn’t seem so bad once baby arrives.

The last three weeks of pregnancy feel longer than the first eight months. They should really say pregnancy is 37 weeks plus an eternity. Once you reach that magical term date, every hour that follows feels like another year.

Feeling your baby move never gets old. There really is no getting used to the amazing flutter from within every time your baby moves. It’s like she’s saying, “Hi, Mom; we’re in this together!” Yeah. Try not crying about that.

Don’t stress about weight gain. A lot of people struggle to lose it. I’ve had three pregnancies and gained 55 pounds every time. If you focus and work hard afterwards, it’s possible to lose the weight. Or, just enjoy your new mom bod. Eat when you’re hungry and don’t stress about the scale. You’ll feel like yourself again soon.

Those wild hormones can make sex better (and worse). Sometimes, you’ll look at your partner like a hot fudge sundae with extra whipped cream. Other times, they’re an anchovy sandwich. Both are normal.

Everyone will have an opinion about your birth plan. Want to go natural? “You’re crazy.” Planning a C-section? “Is that really necessary?” Getting an epidural? “Do you really need one?” Ignore them all. Do what you feel and exactly what you need. No one knows your body better than you, and no one should be making those decisions but you and your doctor.

Expect at least one freak-out per pregnancy (probably more). Having a baby is life-changing. If you didn’t have at least one minor breakdown, it’d be odd. It’s normal to be scared, but it doesn’t mean you aren’t going to rock motherhood.

Your relationship with your dog is about to majorly change, so give him a lot of love while you can. Yes, Duke is your baby now, but when your newborn comes, he’ll have to share the love. You’ll still adore your pooch, but his days of being top dog are sadly numbered. He’ll be okay, though: Soon, he’ll have a toddler to play with!

You’ll look back at photos of your pregnant self and think you look beautiful. It sounds cliché to say everything changes once you hold baby in your arms—but it does. Every time you see a photo, you’ll marvel at your glowing hair and skin and all the love growing inside you.

You’ll cry at every baby commercial that airs for the entire nine months. Pregnant mom-to- be, thy name is emotion. Embrace it. Keep tissues handy by the TV and let the tears flow. That’s what motherhood’s all about.