What timing, right? Whether you tried for months or just got lucky, there is no way you could have foreseen a global pandemic cropping up in the middle of your pregnancy. I think of my English soccer coach back in high school who, at such an inopportune moment, would have shouted, “My God, you’re having a ‘mare!” or “Unlucky, that, unlucky!” What else is there to say, Mamas? This is where we are right now.
If you are pregnant during the Covid-19 outbreak, please accept a virtual hug from a stranger and read on for a few ideas to help you through.
First and Foremost, Take Care of Yourself
How often have we heard, “all that matters is a healthy baby?” Well, actually, a healthy Mama is pretty important too. Now is the time for an abundance of appropriate caution–but you don’t need to stress out about it. If wearing a mask and gloves feels best to you, by all means, do it. If you feel better having groceries delivered, do it.
The point here is to think through the logistics of each thing you need to do, make choices that keep you safe, and then try not worry about it. Worry is a part of every pregnancy, but that particular pitfall has grown all the wider in this moment. Knowing that you are doing your best to avoid exposure will help keep it at bay.
Our physical, emotional, and mental health are crucial to the health of your baby. While utmost caution is appropriate, now is not the time to slack on exercise, healthy food, and good rest. If you are in a place that still allows you to go outside, and you can do it safely, by all means, get out there! Walk, jog, ride a bike, most importantly get some fresh air if you can, and keep moving.
Remember, being strong and healthy only makes bringing a baby into the world easier. If you need or prefer to stay indoors, prenatal yoga is a great way to move your body and relax your mind.
As for food, if you are someone who relies on restaurants quite a bit, you might want to reconsider having take out frequently. Each plate has been cooked and delivered by someone else, thus increasing the risk of exposure. Furthermore, restaurant food tends to be higher in sugar and salt than what we normally prepare at home.
Lots of fruits and vegetables, and simple food at home can keep baby growing and help you be fit for labor. Incorporate immune system boosters such as garlic and fruits high in Vitamin C as much as you can. Good nutrition is essential to a healthy labor and delivery, particularly if you are one of the many women now opting to birth at home.
Also an essential: good rest. Quick, sleep now before the baby comes! It goes without saying that good sleep is a boon to our health. Make sure you are getting yours, and if working remotely means you can sneak naps into your day, by all means, take advantage of the situation!
Many things are out of your control at the moment, and it is likely that you are facing some hard decisions. But you can control the way you care for yourself, so extend yourself an abundance of good choices, grace and love.
You deserve it!
These three women share their stories, read how they are staying safe and sane during this coronavirus pandemic.