What kind of changes can you expect throughout your nine months of pregnancy, and how can you cope with them?
Mood swings and crying
Feeling terribly emotional both very happy and quite desperate is very normal during the first trimester of your pregnancy. Many women first find out they are pregnant because they find themselves crying for no apparent reason, or because they are suddenly highly aggressive. Your new hormonal cocktail may take a lot of getting used to. People might wonder why you've suddenly turned into a b*tch, so you may just want tell people that you are expecting. Many women find that their mood swings and crying are at their worst during the very beginning of their first trimester.
That doesn't mean that things will be back to normal during the rest of their pregnancy, however. Later on during your pregnancy, you'll still be under the influence of hormones. You may also be worrying about the preparations you need to make for your baby's arrival. Women who are going to move house, have trouble with their employers due to maternity leave, or have family issues may be especially stressed. You can attempt to fight pregnancy mood swings by making sure you get enough sleep, and by eating a very healthy diet. Also, don't be afraid to pamper yourself a little. You are growing a whole new human, after all! Get a massage, take a few days off work, and enjoy having lunch with your friends. Include your partner in your pregnancy as much as possible yes, that definitely means sharing your fears and venting. He'll have to understand.
You may find that you start noticing things you never paid much attention to when you are pregnant too. You may turn to mush when you see a baby, or even a kitten. That's your maternal instinct kicking in. This is a great sign that your pregnancy and your emotions are progressing the way they should be. You may also feel compelled to prepare your home for your baby as best as possible, by buying compulsively or obsessively and repeatedly ironing baby clothes or cleaning the baby's nursery.
This is called the nesting instinct, and it hits many moms to-be somewhere around the second or third trimester of their pregnancy. The nesting instinct is apparently nature's way of making sure your new little one will have all his needs met. Don't attempt to fight it, and enjoy it instead unless, of course, it involves something dangerous like balancing on a wobbly ladder.
Some pregnant ladies really do seem to transport themselves to that proverbial pink cloud. Many people believe this is exactly what pregnancy should be like that you should be happy and dreamy all the time. Don't worry if you don't feel ecstatic round the clock that's completely normal. But if you don't seem to enjoy anything any more, feel hopeless and are not at all looking forward to your baby's arrival, you may be dealing with prenatal depression.
Women who have negative feelings all the time should get in touch with your healthcare provider, especially if they feel like harming themselves or their baby. Prenatal depression is a real medical condition, just like postpartum depression. It is nothing to be ashamed about, and probably caused by pregnancy hormones. You and your baby definitely deserve help, so don't hesitate to talk to your doctor.
As your labor and birth approaches...
You may grow increasingly impatient because you simply can't wait for your baby to come. Your body has ballooned to an unprecedented size, and you can't tie your shoe laces any more. You can't sleep comfortably and you can't even walk properly. Those are some excellent reasons to want to be done with your pregnancy already, but you are also simply looking forward to meeting your little one. At the same time, most moms to-be are at least a little anxious about giving birth. You may be worried that the pain is going to be more than you can handle, or that there will be some kind of complication. This is completely normal. Rest assured you will get through labor and birth, one way or another!