I am currently 29 and going through my first pregnancy. For the longest time I felt as though I wasn’t ready, we weren’t ready, there were still things I needed to do. I wanted to wait until we were in a better financial state, until we had a home we planned to stay in for longer than 2 years, until I finished school or at least got close to the end. You see I am a planner. It’s part of my anxiety. I do not like surprises and I do not like feeling out of control. Planning helps me feel like I have some sort of say in what is going to happen and organization in that way helps ease my anxiety. And while there is absolutely nothing wrong with being organized and planning….you honestly cannot plan every detail of your entire life. It’s just not the way it works. I know this yet I have spent nearly all of my twenties doing just that….planning.
When I found out I was pregnant it wasn’t necessarily planned, however, my husband and I had decided we no longer needed to be as cautious anymore. He has an amazing job, we bought a home we plan to be in if not forever for a very long time, I am nearing the end of my schooling. Having gone through a miscarriage in my early twenties I think we just assumed that it would take a while to get pregnant. We were wrong. It was within a matter of weeks moving into our new home that we conceived. I was SHOCKED. Not that I wasn’t happy, because I was, but I also felt this wave of anxiety come over me. Oh boy…it’s happening. There is no turning back now. This is REAL. Up until that point the thought of having children was almost like a fairytale that we would visit on occasion. It sounded fun. We knew we wanted to grow a family. But we weren’t quite sure when the “right time” would be. Turns out..there really is no right time.
Then comes good ol Coronavirus. Now on a regular day, not pregnant, this would be something that naturally would make my anxiety soar. Now adding my pregnancy hormones and worries on top of it. You guys…this has been a battle for me. So I have complained, and vented, and shared all of my deepest fears. I am a feelings type of person and HAVE to get those feelings out through conversation or I will explode. It’s been rough. And I am certain I haven’t been the most positive of people so far during pregnancy. But I really tried to sit down the other day and talk with God about this. I tried to quiet my mind and figure out….what is this situation trying to teach me?
All that could come to my mind was.. You don’t have to plan and be in control of everything. Control does not equal happiness.
I recognized the issue that has been plaguing me for years. I feel so out of control in so many ways. Out of control of my own body, my emotions, and now my daily activities even. No wonder I am struggling. And I am sure there are others out there who feel this exact way.
I truly believe the lesson I can take from all of this is that sometimes it’s okay to not be in control. To take things one day at a time. To SLOW DOWN. To not get so worked up over things I can’t change or fix immediately. To go back to the basics of what really matters and get back in tune with my priorities. As a new mom there is this pressure, at least one that I feel, to know all the info out there. You’re constantly being given advice on so much. Should you vaccinate? Should you not? Is co-sleeping okay? Will you let your kid cry it out or will you carry them around 24/7? Will you be a stay at home mom or take advantage of day care? Do you plan to breastfeed? If so are you going to cover up or fly free without a care? SO MANY THINGS I have never even given a second thought about until I became pregnant. And then it’s like everyone in the world who is a mom or currently pregnant feels the need to weigh in on your choices. And don’t get me wrong of course its amazing to have resources and people to talk to. I often ask for advice and get some amazing tips! But theres also a lot of advice that comes without me asking. A lot of judgements I already see people throwing at one another. And it’s like why? Aren’t we all just trying to do our best and get through motherhood the best way we know how? I mean the average person does in fact want what’s best for their child so does it really matter how she goes about doing that or what her family decides will work best for them?
I’m learning that my worth or value as a mother is not dependent upon the opinions of others..nor is it dependent upon how organized or planned out I make things. It’s time to let some of that go and focus on getting in tune with my body, my emotions, my husband, and my baby. And while some days that may be harder than others…I will always come back to this realization. When things get hard and I want to cry and my anxiety is going crazy…I will remember that it’s okay that I am not in control of whatever situation I may be facing. Control does not equal happiness.
I have no idea how long this pandemic will last, or what impact it’s going to make in the long run on life as we know it. I have no control over it. I also will have little control over who my baby will be. They will be their own person , who while yes will need my guidance, will most definitely not benefit from having an overly controlling mother. So maybe that is what Coronavirus and this whole pandemic is preparing me for. To help make me softer towards this little one that is about to enter the world in 2 short months. To be more open and embracing of change and the chaos that comes with parenthood. And to find my happiness in the small things that really matter.
To all of my expecting mamas out there.. we’ve got this. One day at a time.
The Maven Life