The pregnancy glow. That pinnacle of your pregnant self. Your skin shines brighter, your hair grows thicker, and people say lots of nice things about you.
I believe in the concept of the glow. I even have friends who genuinely seemed to sparkle with their pregnancy. It’s just that, unfortunately when I was pregnant, I missed the memo about the shine hand-out. I’m pretty sure I was busy throwing up in a corner.
Maybe it’s being sick that’s taken your glow. Or maybe being tired. Or maybe fear, or worry.
Whatever it is, you deserve to shine. These are some things that helped me to re-discover, if not a full glow, at least a dull shimmer.
Do nice things for yourself
It’s easy to get swept away planning and preparing and purchasing. All those things are exciting and well worth your time. You just need to make sure that you have some time for yourself as well. Do something that makes you feel good – get a massage, go for a swim, make someone read books to you. Ask your partner/mum/next door neighbour to sing you lullabies. Whatever helps you to relax and feel special. If you’re feeling good, chances are it will lift the whole mood of your household as well.
Ask for help/ talk to someone
Pregnancy can be really hard, and hormones can make you feel crazy. Asking for support – in whatever form – doesn’t make you weak. If you don’t feel up to the normal household jobs, or if you need someone to watch your toddler, it’s okay to ask for help.
According to Beyond Blue, one in ten women experience antenatal depression. If you’re stressed or struggling with your pregnancy and need someone to talk to, Beyond Blue has a 24 hour hotline you can call.
Don’t compare yourself with other people
For me, the subheading to this point is ‘don’t kick your sister in the shins’. My sister and I were recently pregnant at the same time. While I was hugging the toilet bowl crying, she was pretty much skipping in fields of daisies and looking like a princess.
Did resenting the fact that she felt great make me feel any better? Not really. All it made me feel was guilty, because her having a relatively smooth pregnancy is actually something to celebrate.
Comparing to people who were worse off than me wasn’t much better. It made me think maybe I should be tougher, or I shouldn’t be complaining so much.
I’m sure there are other pregnant people who feel better than you. There are probably expectant mums who feel worse too. Comparing where you sit on the scale of how you’re feeling is unlikely to change how you actually feel.
Everyone is different – and every pregnancy is different too.
If all else fails, buy some bronzer
You might not have that pregnancy glow, but you are growing a human. You deserve to shine, even if you have to make it happen yourself. You might feel crap – but you are amazing.