Pregnancy can be an exciting time and a scary and emotional time, usually a combination of all three. Hormones surge in the early stages and can take you on a roller coaster of emotions. Self-care is the key to surviving these ups and downs, in a world of social media it can be difficult to measure up to the glowing images of pregnancy that we see posted across our feeds. The truth is that very few of us actually glide through pregnancy this way, in reality, most of us are glued to the toilet bowl for the first three months!
As part of our new Wellness Wednesdays, we asked Sisters Ruth and Jessica Morris, who founded the award-winning Baboo Box two years ago and were recently listed as one of the top 12 parenting subscription boxes by the Independent, for their top tips to self-care in pregnancy. With boxes for every trimester, offering pregnant women pregnancy safe products, specific to each trimester we felt they were likely to have some brilliant suggestions. And they didn’t let us down! So here are their top 5 tips for self-care in pregnancy:
1) It's ok to not be ok -
Accept the journey that you are on. Accept that you might not feel that pregnancy glow and your hair might not have that much talked about shine. It's ok to feel emotional and scared, it's ok to eat chocolate and cry. Find a friend or family member who will listen without judgement and be honest, sometimes just talking about our feelings can make us feel better. Keeping a journal can also be a great way to process emotions, in the second-trimester box we have included a little note-book so you can get your thoughts and feelings down on paper.
2) Sleep patterns will change -
Again, everyone will experience different sleep patterns, some will feel exhausted and sleepy all the time whilst other people will be unable to sleep and this will continue to change throughout your pregnancy, follow your body's signals - if you feel tired try and get some sleep, if you can't sleep there are a few hacks you can try such as having a cup of sleepy tea or using a sleep mask to block out the light. The second trimester Baboo Box is filled with products to aid sleep in pregnancy.
3) Relax -
Think about what relaxes YOU. Is it going for a long walk whilst listening to a podcast, is it curling up with a good book or taking a nice long bath. Make sure you take time out for yourself every day, it's not selfish, you are growing a baby and that is hard and important work.
4) Connect with your partner -
Pregnancy can sometimes be quite isolating for both parties. You may feel that your partner doesn't understand what you are going through and perhaps your partner really doesn't know what to do or say! Massage is a great way to reconnect, whether that's a gentle foot massage on the sofa or a full body massage to release the knots and aches and pains is up to you. You can read more on the benefits of massage in pregnancy and labour here. Allowing dad to be part of the journey is important, Commando Dad is a great book for new fathers and contains easy to digest information on how to hold a baby, how to support your partner etc. Commando Dad is just one of the products in the Dadoo Box, which is a survival kit for new dads.
5) After the birth -
Again take time out. Allow people to help where they can, allow your mother in law to bring round a lasagne or your partner to sit with the baby whilst you sleep for an hour. Take a long hot soak in some relaxing and healing bath salts, watch your favourite box set and don't worry about the housework, Focus on you, because if you are relaxed and well, then your baby will be too. And if you are struggling mentally remember there is no shame in seeking out professional help.
Baboo Boxes are available as a full subscription or can be ordered individually. Take a look at the full range here www.baboobox.co.uk