Monday, December 22, 2008

On Fear....

So....the other day a good friend of mine from nursing school just looked at me and said, "you look really scared. are you scared?".

Her words surprised me, because while I TOTALLY feel that way, I'm trying not to let people know that. I feel this expectation to be blindly ecstatic with visions of a perfect pregnancy and a perfectly healthy baby and perfect, perfect, perfection. Unfortunately, being in the field I'm in I see and hear a lot of stories and I know that bad stuff can happen...and I just feel scared that some of that stuff will happen to me and my baby.

Also...I feel scared of actually having the baby home with us after he/she is born. I am so nervous about how that will be and how will I know if they are okay and am doing the right thing. I'm scared of the exhaustion and the 24/7 need for me. I said about a month ago that I almost wish that Trevor and I didn't wait nearly 5 years to have our first child because I know how damn EASY and carefree these years have been. I do realize that I'll look back at those years and be thankful for our 1 on 1 time.

I also worry about how huge I'll get. I was already losing weight trying to get ready for a pregnancy....but then SURPRISE! It happened sooner that we thought. So now I'm all in a tizzy about how much weight I'll gain and being healthy and looking at that Shape of A Mother website and rocking myself to sleep at night.

I hope that these fears start going away. That I can start to feel more joyful and live in the moment of my first pregnancy.
Did any of you feel this way? If you did, how did you quiet your fears and just GO with it?

4 comments:

samantha jo campen said...

Bedrest and early labor aside, I wasn't scared to take the baby home or any of that. I felt ready.

And then he was home with us. That first night I had a major panic attack, hyperventilated and threw up. Then we went to our first ped appointment that next morning and our amazing peditrician looked at me, asked "Are you okay?" and I wearily nodded "Uh huh." He went into this schpeal about my ONLY job for the next 6 weeks was to take care of Theo. Nothing else. Everyone else was there to support me and would take care of 'the other not-so-important stuff' while I helped my baby grow and thrive. This calmed me down right away. And then Beth Fish @ sothefishsaid.com said once that as long as you keep the baby alive those first few weeks you're doing an amzing job, which is true. You know me and perfection--I was obsessed. But I kept him alive (and gaining weight OMG) and THAT was a blue ribbon for me. Because once the baby comes, priorities change.

Just keep him/her alive (which I know you can do!!) and you're doing a bang-up job. Honestly and truly.

As for the sleep deprivation thing, well, uh, yeah it sucks. No way around it. But maybe you'll have a good sleeper!

And you know I'm here for ANYTHING. Anything at all. Just like when you called me about eating tuna, you can call me any time you want/need to. I'll do my best to help!!! XOXOXO

madness rivera said...

Hey girl, congratulations!!!!

And heck yea, the fears calm down. They don't ever go away, but you learn how to quiet them, and live with the dull roar that doesn't ever leave.

Here are the two things that made me feel better: 1. Every doctors appointment made me feel better. 2. And every time I felt nervous -- which was A LOT in the beginning of pregnancy -- I'd chant in my head: healthy-happy-strong-baby healthy-happy-strong-baby healthy-happy-strong-baby, over and over. Every time a fear popped up I chanted that to make the rest go away. It did wonders for me.

Tracy said...

Hey you,
Well, starting with early pregnancy: while mine was planned, I was in the same boat as you as far as worring about weight and trying to loose before pregnancy. We were trying, but it was WAY faster than we expected (as in one try). I did worry about the weight gain, but I was more concerned with being healthy, both for me and the baby. So I followed the guidelines, tried to maintain a healty diet. That being said, I also didn't see the benefit in freaking out over everything I put in my mouth. I ate frozen meals, didn't microwave my lunch meat (although I didn't eat much anyway) and YES, I even ate a hot dog or two. My particular feeling on this was that to worry too much was causing more undue anxiety that neccessary.

As for complications during early pregnancy: I had no serious complications, but I was in the hospital a time or two for spotting/cramping, etc. And while inside I was very scared, having Jake and my family and friends as a strong support system helped. And suprisingly it helped a lot to tell people I was scared. I tried to not say anything, and then I realized I was obsessing internally. Once I got it out there, it felt much better.

Lastly, I was also scared bringing home the baby. After having a c-section, I was concerned about my recovery and the baby, and the sleep blah blah. But once we got home, I just kinda' 'knew' that everything was going to be alright. Also, Kristen -- you care for people for a living. There's a lot to be said about instincts; and if anyone has them, you do!! Trust yourself, trust Trevor and trust that you and your family will take care of each other.

Hope that helps. Also, I would reccomend NOT reading "What to expect" until after your 1st trimester. It's like their trying to scare you!

Take care and enjoy your holidays :-)

Kate said...

Oh Kristin, I feel like I could have written this post, I've had all of these same feelings. I think, I'm hoping, they are completely normal.

It wasn't until about week 20 or 22, when I started feeling the baby move that I stopped being constantly worried about something bad happening to the baby. Not to say it completely went away, I still have moments of worry, but the CONSTANT worry stopped. It was really hard for me in the beginning because when I told certain people that I was worried I could tell by their reaction that they thought I was being my typical Type A, worry wort, self. Unfortunately some of these people were even family. I quickly learned who I could talk to about the worry and who I just smiled and said 'everything is going great' to. I'm a pretty open person so this was hard for me but I think it was what I needed to do.

Another very hard part of this whole pregnancy thing for me was the weight gain. Oddly, the number on the scale has never bothered me, but I've struggled with body image for as long as I can remember and I've never been one to easily take or keep weight off. The hardest part of this pregnancy has definitely been having people tell me how big I am. I don't think everyone means for it to come across as badly as it does sometimes but I can't tell you how many people have looked at me and exclaimed "you are HUGE!" I wish I could learn to not take this personally, but honestly I'm not sure I'll ever be able to do that. I will say this though, I truly believe your body is going to gain what it is going to gain, regardless of how healthy you eat or how much you work out. That is just my opinion. Once I came to terms with that I've been able to enjoy the pregnancy more without being so concerned about every single pound I've gained.

The other thing that has me worried is the birthing process itself. I haven't even had the chance to think much about bringing the baby home because I'm too concerned with getting the baby out of me :)

I'm not sure any of this is going to help you, but just know that you are not alone in these fears. Try to enjoy your pregnancy as best you can and try not to put expectations on yourself. You are going to be a great mother! Again, I am just so happy for you and will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.