The first trimester of pregnancy is a profoundly transitional time for both momma and developing baby. Taking care of your physical, emotional, and mental well-being during this period is crucial for a healthy and positive pregnancy experience.
Physically, hormonal fluctuations may lead to symptoms such as nausea, fatigue, and discomfort. Emotionally, expectant mothers may experience heightened emotions and an array of thoughts and concerns related to pregnancy and motherhood. Self-care activities like relaxation, exercises, practicing mindfulness, activities that bring joy, and seeking support can all contribute to improved well-being. It’s so important to remember that acts of self care are not selfish, but rather an essential aspect of nurturing both yourself and your growing baby. Feeling grounded helps create a foundation for a healthy and vibrant pregnancy journey.
Nurturing your physical well-being involves adopting healthy habits that promote overall wellness. Tune into what feels good for your body when it comes to food, and how you feel while eating it. It’s best to eat a well balanced diet, providing your body with rich-nutrient foods. However, a lot of women struggle with morning sickness (which unlike the name does not always occur in the morning) and even the thought of certain foods can turn their stomachs. Know that whatever you’re able to provide your baby is okay, and these early moments of sickness should pass. If you do find yourself struggling throughout your pregnancy with balanced eating and staying hydrated, talk with your provider or a nutritionist to help figure out methods that will work for your body.
Rest is also vital during this time, and throughout all of pregnancy. Your body is doing wondrous things. Prioritizing your rest will help support your energy levels and your physical and mental self. When you feel tired, take a break. Put your feet up and breathe.
Paying attention to your emotional and mental self is essential during pregnancy. The hormonal changes and the anticipation of becoming a parent can bring about a wide range of emotions. It’s important to acknowledge and honor these feelings while also implementing strategies to manage stress and promote a healthy mindset. Developing acts of self care is truly a personal journey, as each momma is so different. Here are a couple of things that we personally love, and our patients have shared that they too have found helpful.
When I first became pregnant, I found myself loaded with angst for all that was to come. Something that truly supported me and my inner being was meditation. Meditation doesn’t always have to be this long drawn out stillness.. It can be a couple of moments with just your breath, a quick focus on your heart and understanding your ever changing emotional needs. If you do have the time, there are great prenatal meditations on YouTube designed for stress management, morning sickness, sleep support, womb health, etc. If this is something you find works for you, try to create some form of habit with it, whether it be first thing in the morning, when you need it throughout the day, or before going to sleep at night.
Drawing a bath
Something as simple as creating an extra luxurious bath can feel so good for your soul and help calm your visceral being. Taking the time for quiet and adding elements of candle light, herbs, oils, salts, and music can enhance that desperate need of pampering. When you focus on relaxation and calming your body, It does wonders for your mental state.
Let’s go into the depths of yourself. What is the best way? Journaling. Journaling can provide a reflection of your emotions and allow you to see yourself as you are. I know I personally have had troubles in the past with journaling, so following prompts can be super helpful. You can Google different prompts that would support you in whatever you’re facing emotionally. My favorites are sometimes the most simple prompts, such as “I feel the happiest when I…” Sometimes all it takes is a little push to help you find your own self expression.
Things that create joy
Everyone finds joy in different things. Some people love exercise like prenatal yoga, walking, or swimming. These can help release endorphins and help strengthen your body. Others would prefer reading a book, or something else that provides a “glitter” (the opposite of a trigger.) Find what makes your heart smile and try to incorporate that into your life as much as possible.
Connecting with your partner, friends or other expectant parents can also be a great form of self care. Talking, sharing space and stories can give a sense of comradery. Knowing you’re not alone in this journey is imperative.
Remember, self-care is not selfish, but a necessary aspect of nurturing oneself and your growing baby. Each journey is unique, so explore what resonates with you and incorporate self-care practices that bring you comfort, joy, and a sense of inner peace.
Written By: Ashley Jacobs