Ah, the joys of pregnancy.
It will be one of the most wonderful experiences of your life, people will tell you. Your skin will glow, you will feel the magic of life growing inside you, and you will receive positive attention from everyone you meet. You will also have an excuse to eat more (as you will be eating for two), and if you want to spend longer in bed, you can tell people it’s because you need the rest because of your pregnancy. What a joy it will be for you!
While there are undeniable benefits to being pregnant, not least the feelings of excitement about the child you are going to bring into the world, you need to know (if you don’t already) that it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. Being pregnant can be tough, as many a mom will tell you if they dared to speak about the negatives as well as the positives. After hearing the news that you’re pregnant, you need to prepare yourself for a bumpy time ahead (quite literally) as you near the day when you will finally give birth.
These are some of the hardest things about being pregnant.
#1: Morning sickness
Unless you have a stomach lined with stone, you are going to suffer from feelings of nausea during your first few months of pregnancy, as well as some serious bouts of vomiting. And despite being called ‘morning sickness,’ you might actually experience ill feelings throughout the day, so you need to have those sick bags at the ready.
Why do women get morning sickness? Experts suggest it is something to do with your hormones, with the increase of HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) causing feelings of sickness as it develops in your placenta. An increase in your oestrogen is also attributed to the problem. For many women, especially those who have a low tolerance to being sick, this is, short of giving birth, one of the worst things about pregnancy, but there are solutions. As is suggested in this article on cures for morning sickness, eating smaller portions and staying hydrated is supposed to help reduce feelings of sickness, so you might not have to suffer unduly. Thankfully, for most women, the problem subsides after the 16-week mark, so you won’t need to bankrupt yourself on sick bags (or fork out for carpet cleaner) indefinitely!
#2: Feelings of stress
And you thought your life before being pregnant was stressful! With worries about your baby and concerns for the future, you might be fraught with stress during your time in pregnancy. Being tired won’t help your stress levels either, as thanks to the discomfort of being pregnant, including feelings of nausea and a variety of aches and pains, you might not get as much sleep as you are used to. And your blessed hormones won’t help, because as well as contributing to your feelings of sickness, they can also cause your mood to change. You will be laughing one moment and then crying the next, with every other emotion known to womankind in between.
Thankfully, stress can be alleviated, although, for the health of you and baby, you don’t want to handle stress the wrong way. You shouldn’t pick up a cigarette to calm your frayed nerves, for example, and you shouldn’t comfort eat junk foods (despite your cravings) or take solace in alcohol. Instead, you should handle stress the right way. This includes taking part in exercise and getting fresh air, so get outside as much as you can, and go for a gentle stroll around the park or go for a swim. Get together with your family and friends too, and talk through your stress, while spending time having fun with them. And if you do have any concerns about your health or the health of your baby, remember that your doctor or midwife is only a phone call away, so don’t be afraid to pester them if you need professional support.
#3: Needing to use the toilet more
Here’s another reason why you are going to sleep less of a night time. Those trips to the toilet will become more frequent as your body produces more fluids as your pregnancy develops. This is because of a capacity increase in your bladder as your kidneys deal with the added waste that is coming from your little one. And because you will feel more pressure on your bladder because of the added weight you are carrying around with you, you will also feel the need to go to the loo more often.
Now, there is no easy advice we can give you on this matter, other than cross your legs and hope for the best! Okay, so that was poor advice, so this is just something you are going to have to put up with. However, if you can work out the position of the nearest toilets when you are out and about, then you might make life easier for yourself should you desperately need to go. You might also consider wearing an adult diaper just in case you sneeze and accidentally wet yourself. And if you would rather put aside the thoughts of wearing a diaper for yourself, you might also want to carry around extra underwear with you, just in case you need a quick change. It’s better to be safe than sorry, after all!
#4: Not feeling ready for motherhood
Especially if you didn’t expect to become pregnant, you might start to worry that you aren’t ready for the challenge. But even if becoming pregnant is a dream come true for you, you might still start to have those ‘what if’ fears as you prepare yourself for being a mom. What if I’m not a good mother? What if I lose touch with my friends? What if I don’t get time to myself anymore? What if I can’t go back to work? What if my baby hates me? And so on and so on and so on (feel free to add your own what if’s).
Now, we don’t have all of the answers for you, but you need to know that most women go through feelings of crisis while they are pregnant. These are usually compounded by feelings of tiredness, as paranoia can set in when you’re feeling exhausted. You might find yourself lying awake at night too, letting those fears circulate around your mind as you struggle to sleep. So, for starters, here are some tips on getting to sleep while you’re pregnant, as these should help you get the shut-eye you need for a refreshed and less frazzled mind. And know too that despite your fears, you probably have nothing to worry about. Chances are, most of your worries will start to disappear once you have your baby in your arms, as once he or she becomes a priority in your life, you will spend less time thinking about your worries and more time thinking about the blessings that your little one affords you. Still, talk out any worries you have with your loved ones, and if you have any specific concerns, there is bound to be useful advice on the internet, so do a Google search and put your mind at rest.
Being pregnant is a little like being on a rollercoaster ride. One day your emotions will be high, the next they might be low. One moment you will be tingling with excitement at the prospect of being a mom, the next you will realize those tingling feelings are signs of needing the loo again! These highs and lows are normal, but remember to always get support when you need it by talking to the people closest to you. Your pregnancy will be over before you know it and you will then have a lifetime of nothing to worry about (as if).
We hope this article was useful, but let us know your thoughts. And if you have any advice for any expectant moms visiting our website, be sure to share your wisdom with us.
Take care, and thanks for reading!