What is mindfulness for pregnancy?
The meaning of “Mindfulness” can have many different interpretations. For me, it is simply paying attention with the intention of being present and aware. It is taking a loving interest in yourself.
Of course there are plenty of nuances and deeper aspects of mindfulness, especially when it comes to mindfulness for maternity. That is what I’m here to discuss.
My mindfulness journey started long before my husband and I decided to conceive.
It actually started with food. I had struggled with a very unhealthy relationship with food and my own body for some years, and finally mindfulness was where I found my relief.
The practice of Mindful eating opened the door to bringing mindfulness into other aspects of my life. I found myself more mindful in my relationships - calmly observing patterns, thoughts, and emotions that normally would have wreaked havoc. I became more mindful in my work and in my social interactions, and even with the mundane aspects of life.
I quickly learned that paying attention and taking a real interest in myself made life easier, healthier, more peaceful, and more joyful.
Of course, I wanted my experience of maternity to be easier, healthier, more peaceful, and more joyful as well.
From the decision to add to our family, through conception, pregnancy, birth, and beyond, I knew that mindfulness would play a major role in how I navigated this beautiful transformation.
These are just a few ways that I incorporated mindfulness into the journey:
It’s easy to let our thoughts, worries, and frustrations run wild when we’re pregnant. Not only does trying to conceive and pregnancy kick up a host of new emotions and experiences, it also tends to kick up many of our past traumas, stored emotions, and subconscious patterns.
Meditation was one of the best tools I used to stay mindful about all the different things surfacing in my mind and reality.
Taking a quiet 10-30 minutes a day to yourself helps you to recognize what you’re feeling so you can either release them or take note of what might need a bit more work.
Your inner world plays a huge role on the developing baby, and meditation is a great way to bring peace to that world and the environment that your little one is receiving its first impression of what this world is like.
This was KEY for my husband and myself when choosing a healthcare provider for my pregnancy. I needed to know that I was given options, information, and free-choice throughout the entire process.
Because of this, I chose to have my prenatal and birthing experience at an independent birth center with skilled midwives who advocate for a natural and empowered birth experience.
Mindfulness in this case was being mindful and informed about the choices I make regarding my pregnancy, birth, and the care of myself and my child.
I did (and continue to do) a ton of research, I discuss with my midwives and husband, and make choices that I feel confident and knowledgeable about.
Allowing myself to follow a more mindful approach to maternity helped me to never take anything at face value and to pick and choose what felt right for me, my baby, and my family.
Put simply: don’t be afraid to take care of YOU. You’re doing an awfully important job that is 24/7 work for your body.
This means listening to your needs, resting when necessary, taking time to process and reflect on your emotions and experience, treating yourself to things that feel good, spending high quality time with your partner, asking for help, and doing the challenging work of healing your body, mind, and soul so you can be the best mother for your child.
Taking care of yourself in all these ways is the truest way to take care of your baby at the same time.
As I mentioned, your internal world has a massive effect on your baby. Our thoughts, beliefs, fears, anxieties, emotions, traumas, and unresolved resentments all have an energetic vibration associated with them.
When we experience or store any low vibrational energy without minimizing or resolving them, they quite literally CHANGE the environment for ourselves and our baby.
A good example of this is a woman who feels guilt or disgust with herself. After working with hundreds of women to regain their health and happiness, I can tell you that this is extremely common.
These feelings of guilt, shame, and disdain for oneself actually create low vibrational energy to be stored in the body - which in turn becomes stored in the developing child and ingrained as subconscious patterns and beliefs that will manifest as the child grows up.
For me, energy healing has been an invaluable tool before, during, and after my pregnancy. This type of work helps to release the low vibrational energy from my body and to prevent a lot of negativity from re-entering.
Loving oneself literally translates to loving your child. What you feel, think, believe, and experience is directly felt, thought, believed, and experienced by your incredibly impressionable baby.
Energy healing, especially what my husband and I practice with one another and our clients, is one of the most important things I could do to give my child and myself the healing and highest vibrational environment we both need to thrive.
There are plenty of ways to incorporate mindfulness into your journey through maternity. I want to hear from you!
What is your favorite way to stay mindful and healthy during this transformation?