When it first happened, you were excited about it. When those two lines appeared right in front of your eyes, images flashed in your head of what it would look and feel like to hold your baby in your arms.
Now, all you can think about is everything that could go wrong.
What if you’re not a good parent. What if something happens to the baby. At your next appointment, are they going to tell you something is wrong?
You wonder why pregnancy is different for you. Did your friends, family, and co-workers experience the same anxious thoughts and feelings? Pregnancy was supposed to be a happy time.
You’re not alone. Here’s how to cope with anxiety during pregnancy.
You’re caring for an entire other person through your own body. Give yourself a little patience and grace. Your body is going through a lot of changes, and pregnancy is not easy.
Treat yourself like you’d treat your friends, family, or co-workers. Imagine what you’d say to them if they were worried or anxious about pregnancy. Now, look in a mirror and say it to yourself. It’s easier said than done but think about yourself and your needs for once. Make sure your needs are being met so that you can care for yourself and your child.
Just because someone you know may have seemed like they had a perfect pregnancy doesn’t mean they actually did. There’s no such thing. You only saw their highlight reel, not the full 9 months.
Tell someone about how you’re feeling. Knowing you’re not alone can be a huge relief. Whether you choose to tell your partner, a friend, a family member, or a co-worker, they’ll be able to offer you the love and support that you need. They may be able to share their personal experience during hard times as well.
Getting your body moving can be a great way to burn those negative thoughts, emotions, and feelings.
Moving your body is one of the best ways for you to manage stress. Your activity level will depend on your training prior to pregnancy and how far along you are. Make sure you talk to a doctor before trying a new exercise.
Some lower impact options are walking, jogging, yoga, or cycling.
Practicing mindfulness is a great way to deal with anxiety, no matter what is triggering it. Anxiety from pregnancy is no different.
Mindfulness teaches you to focus on the present moment. By grounding yourself in the present moment and avoiding any negative thoughts or worries about past or future events, you’re able to push a lot of the anxiety you may be feeling to the side.
Mindfulness techniques could include activities like yoga, meditation, or deep breathing exercises. Don’t knock it until you try it! Try a few techniques out and find what works best for you.
If you notice your anxiety is starting to impact your daily life, it may be time to reach out for additional support. Anxiety during pregnancy is completely normal. Reaching out for help sooner rather than later will be what’s best for you and your baby.
You don’t have to go through this alone. If your anxiety is becoming too much to deal with on your own, reach out to us to schedule a consultation. Our caring therapists at RAFT can help you come up with an action plan and ways to better manage your anxiety so you and your baby are back on track to be as healthy as possible throughout the remainder of your pregnancy.