The morning sickness – more like all day sickness – is almost over.
Jill Dillard, 23, who announced her pregnancy exclusively to PEOPLE in August, is now happy to reveal that as she nears the end of her first trimester, she’s finally beginning to feel better.
“The last couple of days I have had a little bit of a break from the craziness of morning sickness, more like all day sickness, and that has been a blessing,” Jill, the daughter of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, tells PEOPLE.
Jill – whose wedding to Derick Dillard, 25, will be featured on this season of TLC’s hit reality show 19 Kids and Counting, airing Tuesdays at 9 p.m. – says that the support of her mother, Michelle, 47, has helped as she’s struggled through nausea.
“I ask my mom a lot questions,” Jill says. “I’ll ask, ‘How do you feel at this point?’ and ‘What did you do at this point?’ Her morning sickness wore off about now, and she started feeling better. She told me she was craving sour stuff and then she didn’t want sour stuff. I am still kind of in the middle.”
For the first time since discovering she was expecting, Jill says she’s finally feeling well enough to cook again.
“I made taco soup, tater tot casserole and pumpkin bread,” she says. “The pumpkin bread was something I was craving. It was good. I asked one of my friends to text me her recipe and she did and said, ‘Never stand in the way of a pregnant woman and food.’ It was wonderful to be able to cook again.”
One thing that hasn’t changed? Her husband’s careful attention to her pregnancy, she says.
“Derick is so good,” Jill says. “He brought me breakfast in bed yesterday.”
The newlyweds are now ready to start planning for their new arrival, expected in the spring.
“Next week is my second trimester, I am so excited,” Jill says. “Now that I am feeling better, we are going to start getting things ready for the baby and start thinking of names seriously. Finding out the gender soon will help with that.”
Jill says that she and Derick chose to reveal their pregnancy early after they prayed about it.
“Most people, the reason why they wouldn’t share pregnancy news early, [they] are afraid of miscarriage risks,” she says. “We prayed about it, and the film crew asked us if we wanted to wait. But we knew we would share if we did miscarry. We believe that life is precious no matter how young and you would still want to remember that baby.”
“So many pregnancies do end in miscarriage,” says Jill, “and there are lots of women who grieve the loss of babies in private and don’t have support.”
For Jill and Derick, sharing their lives and faith openly is a conscious decision, she says. And sharing their pregnancy joy is something she’s glad to be doing. She and Derick have decided to forgo birth control and leave the number of children they have “up to God.”
“I feel so blessed,” Jill says. “Pickles are still close by, which is a Duggar thing, but I won’t be going through as many as I used to.”