From the day you first pee on that stick through to the day you give birth, it's crazy to think that this is just the start of life as a parent.
The experience of pregnancy and parenthood is so different for each woman and is influenced by so many different factors. From the rollercoaster of emotions and physical changes you go through, to the quality of relationships, support, financial security, social networks and so much more.
And if all that doesn't freak you out, then thinking about the fact that you have to eventually teach a human child about life? What, how can I do that when I haven't even got it figured out? Hec, I remember having a freak out at the fact that I was responsible for naming my child. Really, how can I choose the name that will follow them for eternity? Am I really capable of this?
With all of this to think about, it can be so easy to set unrealistic expectations for ourselves and feel inadequate. What we have to remember is that we were made for this!
I struggle to grow plants, but the fact that my body has been given all it needs to grow a human? That is next level. Let's focus on the things we are capable of. There is so much of love and light to share, and the very fact that we get to share it with our own is nothing short of amazing.
This is not to say that the struggles we go through aren't real. So always allow yourself to be supported. You're are too important not to be prioritised. Reach out to family, friends, other parents, your GP or other mental health care professionals. Feeling low and scared is not a load you need to carry alone.
Do what you can to stay healthy. Sleep, eat well and move regularly or even get outside for fresh air. Even 10 minutes of walking is shown to boost our hormones that promote a positive mood. But ask for help! As the old saying goes, it takes a village to raise a child. So find your tribe, and lean on them. Community is the key to purpose, and your purpose as a parent is everything. Don't you forget it!
For trusted national support networks, clink on the following links to find what you need:
Photo credit: @shaniquebuntyn