You’re almost 3 months pregnant, you’re just getting through nausea and vomiting from the first trimester. You have been trying your best to keep your pregnancy a secret. Going to work, turning down night outs with your friends, secretly pouring out alcoholic drinks handed to you at events you have to attend or have previously agreed to join before you were welcomed with two lines on a pregnancy test.
You can’t wait for the first trimester to end so you can get rid of the stress that all pregnant women have in the early stages of pregnancy. Will I have a miscarriage? Will the blood work come back okay? Is everyone going to be happy I’m pregnant? Will I make a good mother? Am I ready for this? And the list goes on.
The stress of pregnancy starts the moment you are holding a positive test and honestly doesn’t end EVER. So it’s so important to practice self-care before and after your pregnancy so you can be a mother with a healthier mind, body, and soul.
Once you welcome your baby home it’s going to be really hard to learn the importance of self-care because all of your attention is going to be directed towards your baby. If you learn self-care, and witness the positive effect it brings to your life before your holding your little one then it will help motivate you to continue on with self-care through all stages of motherhood, something I wish I started with my first child.
We can be the biggest critics in our lives, and honestly that has nothing but a negative effect on ourselves. With my first child I was lost, tired, stressed, unhealthy, and depressed. I was trying so hard to please everyone’s needs but my own.
I honestly didn’t even realize the pain, and neglect I was putting myself through until two years ago when I was pregnant with my second child a little boy. Which came so quickly, I thought like with my first we would have to try for months and months praying for a positive result. Well no, it wasn’t like that, the positive test came the first month we tried and I was so excited to get that positive result and on top of it a little boy since my first was a girl.
What I didn’t know was that 6 months later I would be saying goodbye to my little boy before even getting to meet him. We found out that our baby didn’t have any kidneys, or lungs and wouldn’t survive in the real world. I felt like reality came in and hit me hard, for the first time in my life I needed to be there for myself and didn’t know how.
There was no one in my life but myself that could take control of the path I would choose to live after experiencing that kind of loss. I was always so busy taking care of my family and putting everyone’s needs first, never taking care of my physical, and emotional self.
Once I started practicing self-care I found so much about myself that I have forgotten about. I learned new things that I never even knew I was capable of. If you’re pregnant, thinking of starting a family, or just reading this because it crossed your screen. Please take the time to practice self-care.
I promise you’ll become the best version of YOU that you can be with adding simple but needed daily practices to your life. If you don’t know where to start I’m here to help you. Here’s a few tips for practicing self-care to ease into this new way of living! I promise if you start out with these you’ll open the door to a new life ahead of you.
- TAKE A MOMENT FOR YOURSELF
A good place to start is taking a 15-20 min break in your day. You’ll figure out what time of the
day will work best for you. For me, I found that waking up 20/30 mins earlier than my kids wake up was the best time for me to let go of my worries, and start the day with a clear head.
I would wake up brush my teeth, wash my face, and then head to the kitchen brew a cup of coffee (of course add a scoop of Bumped Up collagen) then head out back and just sit on my patio.
It’s so peaceful listening to the birds chirp in the morning, and just concentrate on your thoughts, accept them as they come in, and let them go. It’s my morning meditation before the day starts, before kids, work, and life gets in the way. It’s good to find inner peace to start your day with. The days I don’t do this I feel so rushed and unsettled the whole day.
- GRATITUDE JOURNAL
You know what they say anything written on paper becomes more powerful. I couldn’t agree more, starting a gratitude journal was one of the best things I could have done. Every night before I go to bed I write about what I’m grateful for from the day, and also what my goals are long term and short term.
It’s something to keep myself accountable but it’s also cool to see how far i’ve come along. when I look back at old entries it motivates me to continue on. Most of everything I have written down in my journal I have accomplished and have an immense amount of gratitude for.
Fitness is a huge factor in self care, and I know alot of us tend to say we don’t have time for it. I was one of those people. I always claimed I had no time to go and workout. Once I found “time” which didn’t just magically appear it was always there. I think I can say with confidence that fitness saved my soul.
First I started with just taking small walks around the neighborhood with my dog. I would come home and just think wow that was awesome, I really needed that.
Then those walks turned into jogs, and then jogs turned into me signing up at a gym.
I never had a gym membership, well I did once when I was younger but I never went. This time I actually went to the gym, and looking at my app and checking all my check ins just got me so excited about this new found glory in my life. I’m really doing this!
You just need to make time for it, it’s easy to push your personal needs to the side for your kids, husband, and work.
I promise you it’s more you then it’s them that’s stopping you. Once I started going to the gym everyday for 1-2 hours I expected my husband to start telling me I go to much. NOPE! instead guess what he signed up for the gym and we tackled this new life together, and it has been AWESOME!
- MINDFUL EATING
Of course once you find time for movement, and fitness you start noticing a positive shift in your life to the point where you are making changes anywhere you can. After I started becoming really into fitness it was clear to me that I needed to change what I put into my body.
I didn’t know this but once I found this out it made so much sense. “Our nervous system is controlled by our digestive system” . This totally explains why when you eat like crap you feel like crap. Being very mindful of what you eat is such an important role in self care.
Once I switched out processed foods with whole foods I no longer had those mid afternoon crashes. It opened my life up to so much that I never knew existed. My pantry completely changed, and even my family was happy about it. You can still enjoy all the meals you love but in a much healthier way.
I promise you there’s a healthy recipe for all of your favorite meals. The only difference is your body will be thanking you rather then burning out. Even for my sweet tooth followers there are so many healthy alternatives for all your favorite desserts!
This was actually one of the hardest changes for me to do, Im such an introvert at heart. I love to stay home with the family maybe occasionally go out to eat, or do some kind of local festival.
One of my doctor friends told me that I needed to go out and have a girls night occasionally.
This is something that I know a lot of moms don’t realize they need. BUT you need your girlfriends!
Once I started going out with my friends again and I don’t mean going out till the sun come outs even though we might have done that once because we were having so much fun. I just mean go out with your girlfriends for dinner, or meet up at a house and have a game night with some wine, anything that brings you together at a table.
This is what brought back who I used to be, I love my husband and my kids and I love spending time with them. But when I hang out with my girlfriends it just brings back so many memories on all the good times we had together. We can laugh for hours, and hours and don’t even realize how much time has passed.
This just completed everything I was missing in my life. I just became a happier person I felt like the old me, the me who used to be the life of the party. I love my new life as a wife, and a mother but that doesn’t mean that the old fun me needed to go away. I have to admit I’m so happy she’s back!
I never realized how much I missed her. My husband is just as happy as I am as well because this is the women he fell in love with a decade ago before I let life’s worries come crashing in and change me.