Updated: Mar 12, 2020
I've received a few requests to change up my topics a little bit. While people were finding my posts about nutrition and other self care topics helpful, they also wanted to know a few other things like what do you do or how do you feel when you first find out you're pregnant? As some of you may know I'm the mother of three girls ( and one more on the way) Each time I found out I was pregnant there was a different reaction. My first pregnancy I was about to turn eighteen and I had no idea what the heck was going on. I thought that I was just suffering from some crazy stomach bug but then when I missed two periods I knew something wasn't right. I should have known that anyways considering I was eating pickles with peppermint. I would get one of those huge pickles and place a peppermint stick in the middle. It was absolutely delicious. (side note, now I hate pickles) I took a pregnancy test in my boyfriend's (at that time) bathroom and those two lines popped up. I was TERRIFIED! I was in my senior year of high school, he had already graduated a year earlier and was attending college, and neither one of us wanted to tell our parental units.
My mom flipped her lid! His family was a little more understanding. Neither one of them let us stay with them. That whole "you want to act you're grown and make grown folks decisions, then you're going to get out and be grown" went into place. He was working at the time and I immediately found a job. We were able to get a nice apartment in a high rise. How we pulled this off I have no idea. Any who, let's just say I grew up really fast. I was nervous about being a pregnant but I stepped up and took care of my responsibility. As soon as I saw her on December 24th 2003 I was instantly in love. Something about seeing that tiny little person and holding her in my arms changed me.
Baby number two I was twenty six and living overseas in Germany, thanks to the military. I had suffered two miscarriages and figured that maybe I couldn't have anymore children. Thanksgiving came around and I was eating so much, something inside me said that I was pregnant but I wasn't sure until, yes you guessed it. Those two lovely lines popped up. I was so paranoid that whole pregnancy. I had doctor's appointments every two weeks from the very beginning because of my history. Forty weeks and one day later I delivered an 8 pound baby girl with no drugs! That feeling of love filled me yet again.
Baby number three I was thirty one and back in my home town in Tennessee. I wasn't trying to get pregnant but I wasn't not trying either. I was at work and felt this sharp pain in my breast. I've only had breast tenderness during pregnancy and I hadn't even missed my period yet. But I was pregnant. I was excited and scared. My life had undergone so many changes before that and I was feeling so unsure about everything. I wasn't even sure that I wanted another baby. However 39 weeks later she came into the world and us making eye contact stole my heart.
Here are my top three tips for dealing with the news!
1. Talk about it!
It's ABSOLUTELY normal to have some doubts and concerns when you find out you're going to be a parent. You can talk to someone you trust about exactly what it is that's bothering you. You would be surprised at the fact that so many people have the exact same concerns as you. Even the ones that seem as though they have it all together. Many people have been there and experienced the very same thing. Others can share their stories and help you come up with ways to cope with what you're feeling.
2. Accept Where You Are.
Whether this was a planned pregnancy or not accepting the fact that you have concerns is important. Please don't feel the need to hide your emotions. Like everything else, this too shall pass. If you have to take a few days to deal with your emotions, do so!
3. Write down your concerns and deal with them one by one.
If you're worrying about support from friends and family, work, and what labor will be like, write these things down and tackle them one by one. There were times when I had a huge network of support from both friends and family. Then there were times when my family was not so supportive so I had to rely on close friends. Write down the names of people you know will be there and you know will support you. Don't be afraid to talk to them and let know how important it is to have their support.
Wondering what it whether you will return to work after you deliver or how much time you can afford to take off? Speak with your HR department to figure out things such as FMLA, short and long term disability, and whether your company has a maternity leave option. If you aren't working and depend solely on your partner's income, figure out a budget to determine how you will be able to get the things that you need. There are also programs around to help pregnant women and postpartum mothers. Do your research to find programs in your area.
Labor and delivery can go so many different ways. There are birthing classes that you can take that will help you prepare and you can also talk to women who have gone through the process just to get their take on things. Remember, we can't control everything in life and also remember your body will do what it needs to do to get your baby. Develop a healthy relationship with your provider so that things will be communicated to you if things start to change during labor, such as needing a c-section instead of delivering vaginally.
Finding out you're pregnant can bring on so many emotions. You can be in denial, you can have anxiety, you can be excited, you can have thoughts of not wanting to do this, or you can be so sure that you've got this. You can also have all of these emotions during the process. It's okay to feel whatever you feel. Just know and understand that you are doing something amazing, growing a life, the future, inside of you. Remember you're awesome and whatever you feel it's absolutely fine! How did you feel when you found out? Please feel free to share!
Until next time
Peace, Love, and Light
Certified Pregnancy Health Coach
"Pregnancy is the only time in life that you fall in love with someone that you haven't met."