The torture of the First Trimester: Why it’s way more agonising than birth…
Okay, lets start from the very beginning. Maybe you tried for a baby for months, maybe even years, or maybe you’re one of the lucky ones who had that,
”What?!...Already?...Really?!” kind of shocker moment, or perhaps this pregnancy was a complete (happy) accident, (ahem), I mean surprise!
You peed on numerous plastic sticks, some from the Pound Shop; some from Boots, (just to make sure the Pound Shop ones weren’t dodgy) and you may have even splurged on one of the fancy digital versions just to see the result in actual text. There may have been shock, excitement, tears of joy and maybe even tears of disbelief or absolute terror. Then once you’d calmed down, stopped shaking, wiped the tears and looked at the stick/s for the 758th time, it all became mightily real. The magnitude of the situation kicked in…Shiiit! You’ve got a teeny tiny blob of cells inside you that is actually going to grow into a mini human, (and you can’t even down a triple GnT or large Sauvignon Blanc to celebrate and/or calm the nerves)!
So, you trundle along to the doctor, who probably bursts your bubble ever so slightly by not really giving much of a damn that you’ve just excitedly/ nervously/ awkwardly uttered those massive flashing gigantic great big strange sounding words,
“Great,” They say, flatly, “Congratulations”.
”What? No test? No pee sample? You mean you’re just gonna take my word for it?! I’ve got ten positive tests in my handbag don’t you want to….just look at one?....no?....oh….okay then.”
They routinely, without showing an ounce of emotion or joy at the news you’ve just given them, book you in to see the midwife, and you leave feeling a huge anti-climax. You come back three days later and get a slightly warmer, more positive response from your midwife. She swizzles your dates round on her funny little cardboard swizzler to see how many weeks you are, asks you a few weird questions, and takes your blood pressure. You’ll probably pee in a very small tube (which you may even get the pleasure of keeping for nine months- times are hard). You’ll get your shiny plastic Pregnancy Pack and be sent on your merry way.
You may as well have had a tag punctured into your ear with a number on it, as now, (Congratulations), you’ve entered into the Baby Factory of routine, protocol and ‘high risk until proven otherwise’ style testing, scaremongering and statistics. You’ve entered into the longest, most nerve-wracking wait of your life, the wait for the 12-week scan. In the next few weeks you’ll probably feel like utter crap, even if you get away without vomiting into hedgerows on the way to work, and dry retching into the bin if you’ve been more than an hour without food, you’ll still feel pretty rank. And the worst thing is of course, you can’t even bloody well tell anyone! You can’t even wallow in your own exhaustion; you have to pretend that everything is fine; you’ve just decided to quit caffeine for your health, Okay? And my god, that urine infection really is lingering on, those antibiotics are so damn annoying, stopping you from going out and getting trashed with your friends, especially at this time of year!
Right, so you haven’t even had your scan yet, and everywhere you go you hear of miscarriage, missed miscarriage, defects…the awful, devastating, heart-breaking things that can (and quite often sadly do) happen to pregnant women, and I’m sure you know someone who’s been through these things, maybe you have yourself- I’m so sorry if you have.
All this worry is totally normal. The First Trimester is so fragile, an amazing miracle, but that little life is so precious, so vulnerable. The agony of not being able to see what is going on inside you, the constant worry and judgment of yourself is immense. You can't physically feel anything moving yet, and there what you think maybe the start of a bump is just probably bloating! The massive responsibility you feel for growing this new tiny life is such an intense and all consuming feeling, and yes, this part of pregnancy is, to a certain extent out of your control, and that, my friend is what makes the First Trimester so flippin’ hard. You're hormones are going haywire, and there is nothing you can do about it.
So you get through the constant knicker watching, analysing your every breath and each crampy twinge, watching what you eat, the relentless nausea, hormonal head-mess, painful hugs from your well meaning friends and family as your boobs feel like they’re gonna spontaneously combust every time anyone comes near you…
Phew! The pure relief of the first scan! Exciting! You get to see your little bean on the screen, maybe you’ll hear or see the little flickering heartbeat and in that instant you’re in love; Madly in love and elated by the site of some fuzzy grey alien creature on a screen; Your actual little baby- it’s really happening- you’re pregnant! Woohoo!
Then what? Oh yeah…more statistics… nuchal measurements, Downs Syndrome risks, blood tests, more peeing in your special little pot, and more waiting, nervously, anxiously for the results…
When all that’s over, stop. Breathe. Relax, be kind to yourself.
It’s time to start loving your pregnancy, loving your body, and begin really trusting the amazing job it's been doing all by itself, and will continue to do. It's also time to get thinking about how you’re going to prepare for the day your baby enters your world on the outside!
The most thorough, positive way you and your partner can prepare is by booking on to a Mellow Mumma Birth Preparation & Hypnobirthing workshop!
There are many daunting hurdles during pregnancy, all culminating in the really big one; Birth. You see, these worries and fears may seem very real and scary to you now, but they needn’t. You’ll figure out very quickly on a hypnobirthing workshop, that you’ve inherited these fears, self-judgements and anxieties from society, and they’re not useful or productive in any way.
Unlike the agonising First Trimester, your birth experience is not beyond your control, far from it, or it needn’t be anyway. It’s now time for you to take charge of your own body. It’s time for you to regain confidence in your body’s innate ability. In the same way you trusted your body to instinctively protect, and nourish your tiny baby for those first 12 weeks, you now need to give yourself permission to let go of the fear of birth and get ready for what should be the most empowering, incredible day of your life.
I'm now taking bookings for January, February/March and April. Book before 31st January to take advantage of my 2016 prices!
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