The day I found out I was pregnant will forever be frozen in time. My first instinct was to walk laps around the inside of the house. I just started walking and kept walking as I processed what was ahead. This was not planned so it was such a surprise! My mind was filled with delight and hope and shadows of fear. Fear of the unexpected and a path I had never walked down before. Yet, I felt so blessed that I had been given such a wonderful gift. When you have an autoimmune disorder, you never really know how your body will respond to pregnancy. I often questioned if it would even be possible for me to have children. Here, on this day, I was met with that reality and resounding YES. Yes, it is possible and it’s happening right now! I called my doctor to make the first appointment and waited for what felt like years before the day came. But, then it came.
Hearing that heartbeat for the first time brought me much peace. The fear whirling around started to settle after seeing our little one and talking with the doctor. My midwife along with my rheumatologist developed a plan for care, and things have been great so far for our baby and me. We are hopeful and excited for the next few months as I finish up the second trimester and finish out the third. The autoimmune issues have only tried to flare a few times, but it’s usually taken care of with a little extra rest. I’ve been proactive in taking care of my joints and preparing my body for this time. We also made the decision early on that we would celebrate this pregnancy and not fear anything to come or any “might-be.” It has made a huge difference for me. Instead of spending time worrying about hypotheticals or statistics, we have rejoiced and celebrated the little life we already love so much!
My Pregnancy Self-Care Routine
- Biweekly prenatal massages. Find someone who specializes in prenatal massages in your area.
- Prenatal yoga (group classes weekly and at home). I cannot recommend this enough! It’s a great time to connect with other expectant mothers and learn correct form for practicing at home.
- Walks outside. Vitamin D + low impact exercise for the win!
- Vitamins. I went the longest time without taking my prenatal vitamins. I’ve recently started taking them and notice a difference.
- Salt baths. Epsom salt eases aches and boosts your magnesium. Add some essential oils for added benefits.
- Quiet time to reading and writing. I love flipping through magazines right now. I also have started a Bible study on the book of James. It’s a great way to relax if you have a busy mind like me,
- Give yourself some grace to rest. Growing a baby is no easy task! I’ve had to learn to let some things go (hello wrinkly clothes) or allow my husband to help.
- Be joyful; fear less!
Whether your already a mommy or hope to be one, I wish you well on your journey!