Pregnancy. It’s something as women that we rarely think seriously about until we are ready, but something we should prepare for well before we are actually ready to “try.” Even the thought of starting to “try” is nerve wrecking, but that’s why preparation is key. Nourish your mind, body and soul to prepare you for the most awe-inspiring and vulnerable time of your life. My best advice is to change your lifestyle and habits at least 12 months before you start trying (if needed) - having a healthy body and an open mind will allow you to navigate and enjoy the process of trying to get pregnant when the time comes. I am a mother of 3; I always wanted to become a mom. I got married at 32 and my husband wanted to wait a year before we started trying. I worked hard the year before we started, altering my habits mentally and physically in 3 main areas to better prepare for the journey ahead. Please note that this was my personal journey, and everyone prepares for and experiences pregnancy differently. Talk to your doctor and the women whose opinions you trust before deciding what works for you!
Mentally prepare yourself that you could be lucky and get pregnant right away like I did with my first two. Or it could be a struggle as it was with my third, and for many other women across the country. I was so fortunate with the first two, pregnant within the first 2 months with no complications. My third was a different story, and this is actually the first time I am sharing this, but I am choosing to do so to provide hope and support to anyone going through something similar. I got pregnant the third time right away (just like the others), but 7 weeks later, I unexpectedly miscarried. I was devastated, heartbroken and lost - I blamed myself, as so many women tend to do. Of course it had nothing to do with me, but it was still really hard for me to get over, and it took a long time to heal which caused me to try for years before I became successfully pregnant a third time. Everything happens for a reason, but my best advice to anyone trying to get pregnant, especially if there is the added stress of miscarriage or fertility issues, is to take up meditation. When there is so much out of your control, you need peace of mind knowing that all will be well, and that is what meditation did for me.
I attribute my mental and physical state of being, as well as incredible luck, as the reason I did get pregnant so quickly. Working out helps relieve stress and gets your body prepared for the most incredible journey ahead; creating a human, and the most challenging marathon you will ever take on; birth. My advice is to find something you love and make it a habit. Find a time where you can move, sweat, and connect to your soul to prepare to bring another soul into it. Making exercise a habit before you actually get pregnant is key, because once you get pregnant, it’ll be that much harder to motivate yourself when you are tired and nauseous all the time. Pelvic floor health is also key to a healthy pregnancy and recovery, so taking the time to learn about what that means, how you can exercise your pelvic floor well before pregnancy and throughout, is so important. Connecting to your body will allow you to feel good about where your baby is going to grow and get nourishment over the next 9 months.
I’m a big believer in balance and eating clean, but also living. If you need to change your eating habits, I recommend starting 12 months before you begin the process of trying to get pregnant because it needs to be a habit well before you get pregnant. If not, it will be very hard to make good nutritional choices when you are about to vomit and pizza is the only thing that sounds good (speaking from experience here). Think about the foods and beverages you want your baby to receive before you actually put it in your mouth; it’s really that simple. If you were pregnant right now, would you want your fetus to receive greens, chicken breast, grilled vegetables and water or a Big Mac and Diet Coke? See, you already answered your own question. Being mindful of the things you put in your body is all you need to do and if you can’t change your habits for yourself, I’m sure you can and will for your future children!
Conception and pregnancy is a miracle. I hope you find my tips and story helpful as you enter this next stage of life. Please comment below with any questions or advice - I wish you the best in your journey!