Updated 2019: For many pregnant moms, welcoming a baby can be a difficult challenge to get through. Here’s how to stay positive during pregnancy and times are tough.
I know I’m not alone when I say your pregnancy can get tough. For you, it might be caring for your toddler when you can barely walk, thinking of financial bills to come, or coping with health issues. And when it rains, it pours—bad luck seems to invite even more bad luck.
I hardly have bad luck in life, but it seems to have barged right through the door as I near the end of my twin pregnancy.
You see, I endured several discomforts throughout the pregnancy, like being sick five times, to double the fatigue and nausea, and even struggling to gain enough weight to ensure these babies are a healthy size.
Now, however, I’m faced with more challenging complications.
Besides coming down with a PUPPPs rash, I now also have cholestasis, yet another itch-related pregnancy complication. (Why I have two itch-related complications that have nothing to do with each other is beyond me.) But unlike PUPPPs, cholestasis poses a risk to the babies, which means I have to visit the doctor three times a week to monitor their health. It also means I deliver no later than 37 weeks.
From physical complications I never imagined, to worrying about how I’m going to afford all this, I’m having to learn how to stay positive during pregnancy.
How to stay positive during pregnancy
It’s been a whirlwind of madness in our home, to say the least. I have a three-year-old to care for and a husband battling bronchitis. I’ve been ready to give up so many times and wallow in self-pity, but remind myself that these babies rely on me to stay positive.
As much as I wrote this article to help you, I also wrote it for myself, as a reminder to stay positive during pregnancy, especially when things aren’t going exactly smooth:
1. Focus on the positive
One of the best ways to ease worries and anxiety is to think about something else, even for a short while. We are where our attention is, so the more we focus and dwell on our problems, the more we seem to invite them. Beside, no one ever felt good staying stuck in negative emotions, obsessing over every detail.
For me, distractions might mean watching a funny show or playing games on my iPhone. (Yes that’s me playing Scramble with Friends and Draw Something at 3am.) I’ll hang out with my three-year-old and talk to my husband and mom about topics other than the difficult pregnancy.
Find even the smallest positive thing to be grateful. And I mean small—it could be the beautiful clouds in the sky or that you were able to get a morning appointment with the doctor. These positive parts of your life are there, often in abundance, if we pay attention to them.
In my case, I’m fortunate that the babies remain healthy despite the complications, and that I’m in competent hands with my doctors. My son still loves to kiss my belly, and heck, I even have a disabled parking placard so that I don’t have to walk too far.
2. Have a good cry or vent
At the same time, maybe you just need to get your emotions out of your system. While you don’t want to stay miserable too long, it’s also not healthy to bottle up your feelings.
Accept the emotions you feel, whether it’s the guilt of not being grateful that you’re even having a baby, or the worries of how you’ll manage once she’s born.
I find solace in online mommy groups dealing with similar complications so I know I’m not alone. I also email my friends the latest updates for their support.
3. Tell yourself these challenges are temporary
Is this permanent? Of course not. Change is constant, which means everything in life—both the highs and lows—come and go.
This frustrating stage in your life is temporary, even if it may not seem like it. Pregnancy itself has a deadline, down to the date. While the ensuing newborn days will be crazy, you don’t have long to wait before these complications are over.
And if you’re worried about parenthood in general—in other words, what comes after the pregnancy—know that even that stage is temporary. Yes, you’ll be sleep-deprived and your routine will be disrupted, but the newborn season also ebbs and flows and is never permanent.
4. It’s all for good reason
I’ve always felt that our experiences in life help mold us into the people we need to be. For instance, bad relationships in the past can teach us about what we want in a partner, and poor decisions help us grow into more mature adults.
Look for the lessons to be learned in this particular season in your life. What can this difficult pregnancy teach you, what lessons do you still need to learn? How can you grow as a human being to overcome these challenges? And what opportunities are available that never would had you not been right here, right now?
Even the annoyances and hassles serve their purpose. However much of a nuisance frequent medical tests may be, they’ve ensured my health and those of the babies. I’m reminded that the sacrifices are worth the trouble when I eventually hold two baby boys in my arms.
In other words, remember your “why” to help you plow through even the toughest days.
Last night I cried from the discomforts of carrying twins and having these complications. It isn’t easy and was nothing like my singleton pregnancy. I was just about to be the biggest cry baby and mope for the next few weeks.
But then you wake up the next day and realize that there’s still goodness. We can focus on the positive things in our life that can be so easily obscured by our obsession with the negative. We can release our emotions and come to a healthy place of acceptance, whatever the feelings might be.
These challenges are also temporary, so that no matter how difficult, scary, or frustrating it is, your pregnancy will soon be over. And that we can find the good in all of this, from realizing how far we’ve come, to remembering our “why.”
Because at the end of the day, I have an amazing family—plus two little ones on the way—worth holding on for.
Get more tips:
- What Every Mom Needs to Know About Her Second Pregnancy
- How to Survive a Pregnancy with a Toddler
- 8 Tips to Save for Maternity Leave
- 9 Signs You’re in the First Trimester
- What Are the Signs to Stop Working During Pregnancy?
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