June 17, 2019
Reframing Your Thoughts About the Final Weeks of Pregnancy
By: Cara Terreri | 0 Comments
The funny and frustrating thing about the last few weeks of pregnancy is that you never truly know you're at the end until after you give birth. Why does this (seemingly obvious) thing matter? Because the difference between one, two, or three weeks when you're oh-so-pregnant can be the difference between feeling mildly tortured and feeling like you're stranded on a deserted island infested with mosquitos in 100 degree weather with no rescue in sight. Truth.
Of course, that's just the nature of birth -- exactly when you go into labor is a big unknown, which is why those last weeks in pregnancy can feel so difficult. It's the waiting and the not knowing. Also the exhaustion, the body soreness, the heartburn, the ramp-up contractions... you get the idea. The good news is, people have been enduring this for... well, forever. So you've got that going for you. But none of this is very helpful when it comes to coping. Surviving is one thing. Feeling good about it, is another. Here are a few things you can do to not only "get through" the last weeks of pregnancy, but maybe even enjoy it.
- Create a mantra that helps you get through tough moments. Repeat it daily, hourly -- whenever you need it. Maybe it's "I will not be pregnant forever" or "I can do hard things." Say the words you need to hear often and out loud -- you'll be surprised at how it helps!
- Relish your belly and your pregnant body -- it will soon be very different. Soak up the magic of feeling life grow inside you. If you're too miserable to do this, that's fine too. Not everyone has the same experience, and sometimes, it's just too physically difficult to try and feel good about your pregnancy.
- Capture these moments on camera. Whether you have professional maternity photo shoot, set up your camera's self-timer, or ask a friend or partner to take candid shots, make a point to photograph some of these last and most pronounced images of your pregnant self. Even if you don't enjoy seeing yourself pregnant, your soon-to-be older child will love seeing pictures of you when you were pregnant.
- Remind yourself that you are currently getting more sleep at night than you will when baby arrives... even if you're tossing and turning and getting up 4x a night to pee. Sorry, but it's true.
- If you have been enjoying the extra attention you've received during pregnancy, soak it up now. When baby comes, that attention shifts -- dramatically.
- Find something in every day to look forward to that doesn't include the thought, "Will I go into labor today?" Even the tiniest thing like "Oooh, I get to go grocery shopping today!" can help take your mind off a never-ending pregnancy.
- Find ways to feel good. What kinds of things make you feel good? Lunch with a friend, your favorite dark chocolate, comfort food casseroles, a massage or foot rub, watching a funny movie, listening to your favorite album, a nap, dip in the pool, sex, having someone brush your hair. Indulge in the things that bring you pleasure, big and small.
- Spend time with people who support you best and boost your mood. These are your "people" and they know best how to get your through hard times.
- Spend time outdoors every day. Being outside in nature is proven to boost your mood and lighten your thoughts and feelings. Even if it's only for 15 minutes.
- Do non-pregnancy-related things. Go out on dates; take up a new hobby; organize your home filing cabinet -- do things that take your mind off of the obvious.
The home stretch of pregnancy may feel long, but in the grand scheme of life, it's so short. You can and will get through it. If possible, try to take small, daily moments to enjoy these final weeks. You may just find that it helps.
TagsThird Trimester Last Weeks of Pregnancy