“Self-care isn’t always chocolate cake and trips to the spa. Sometimes, it’s meal planning, going to bed early, or letting go of a bad friend. It’s forgiving yourself for not meeting your own impossible standards, and understanding that you are worthy. Always. Self-care isn’t just luxuries, but a means for survival. “
– Whole Self Health
Here at Adoption Choice of Colorado, we pride ourselves on providing the most empowering information and advice possible, the most useful tips and tricks, and the best overall support. Over the past few weeks, we’ve talked about the importance of nutrition, exercise and sleep during pregnancy, which are all great places to start when it comes to providing self-care during your unplanned pregnancy. This week, we are talking about self-care.
As pregnancy can be very tough on your body, it is paramount that you take care of yourself to ensure the health and safety of you and your baby. Here are some tips about self-care that you may want to include in your daily regimen, as well as other resources if you need outside support during your pregnancy.
No matter how you practice self-care, make sure you have healthy and realistic expectations in place. Not only in how you’ll care for yourself right now, but also how you’ll continue to do so post-birth and adoption. Keeping up with a normal routine pre and post-pregnancy will help you stay balanced. It is also important to know what self-care looks like to you, as it is different for every person. There is no right or wrong way to practice self-care during your unplanned pregnancy.
Keeping Up with Positivity
Positivity is essential to a healthy self-care routine and is beneficial in many ways. It helps you maintain a healthy, optimistic mindset and attitude about yourself and your pregnancy. It also helps sustain an uplifting environment pre and post-pregnancy. Keeping positive allows you to weed out any of the negativity in your life, your current environment, your support system or lack thereof, and with your own self-talk.
1. Your Environment
Whether it is your physical or intellectual environment, make sure the spaces you choose to be in are positive ones. That they aid in your positive outlook and self-care routine. For example, there are thousands of mommy blogs, Instagram’s and books that talk about the “perfect” pregnancy. In truth, though, there is no such thing as having a perfect pregnancy, which can breed negative and unrealistic expectations. Instead, be a part of community spaces or support groups you can relate to as a birth mom; therefore, building a healthy, non-comparison environment that supports you during your pregnancy.
2. Who You Surround Yourself With
Not everyone will be supportive or compassionate about your decision to place your baby for adoption and may give you a difficult time about it. Most often, this reaction comes from a place of not understanding. Yet, having an unplanned pregnancy and making the choice to place your child for adoption is an intricate process and unique to every individual. So, in cases like this, it’s completely ok to have a set of responses ready to go. These will provide you with an emotional barrier and a way out of an awkward or unpleasant conversation if need be. Unfortunately, having this exit strategy in place is necessary. But know that it’s also ok and healthy to limit your time around those who do not view your decision positively. Because, if you allow too much negativity into your world, it can cause undo hurt and stress.
3. Self-love and Positive Self-talk
Learning to see yourself in a positive light is an endless journey and requires lots of effort on your part, as well as healthy amounts of support. However, when you have the first two down — putting yourself in a positive environment and surrounding yourself with positive people — positive self-talk becomes a whole lot easier.
In need of some inspiration to boost your self-talk? Try out these suggestions.
- Say out loud every day five things about yourself that are positive or things that you love.
- Get rid of anything that makes you feel negative or comparative about yourself and your pregnancy.
- Talk positively to others about yourself and your pregnancy.
Along those same lines, here are some ideas on how you can practice self-care during your unplanned pregnancy. This list is non-exhaustive, but can help you become inspired. If you think of something else that would work for you — go for it:
- Practice self-love and listen to your body — whatever that looks like for you
- Pray or go to church
- Join support groups
- Pamper yourself — take a bath, get a massage, or get your toes done
- Spend time with others
- Go to the movies or do any other hobbies you enjoy
- Guilt-free napping — don’t feel bad about taking naps; listen to your body and take that nap if you’re tired
- Meet your snuggle quota — your four-legged loved ones can help with this and reduce your stress
- Schedule regular appointments — such as dentist appointments, annual doctor appointments, counseling etc.
Other Resources and Support
Oftentimes, there is an idea that pregnancy is a ray of sunshine all the time; however, a number of birth moms experience prenatal depression and anxiety. If you ever have concerns about these things, or just feel off, make sure to talk to your doctor. It is not a sign of weakness to ask for help. At times we all need extra support, so don’t be afraid to seek advice, therapy, medication (as long as it is approved by your doctor), or even support from family and friends — whatever it is that you may need outside of other forms of self-care.
Here at Adoption Choices of Colorado we also provide support in the form of free counseling and other resources such as financial and legal options, adoption plans, etc. We are always here to help, especially when it comes to helping you feel positive about your unplanned pregnancy and the choices you are making.
Self-Care during Your Unplanned Pregnancy
Self-care is an important tool to have in your arsenal. Self-care is imperative to a positive and healthy pregnancy; however, self-care doesn’t have to be a practice that you implement only during your unplanned pregnancy. It can be something that you continue in order to form a lifelong habit.
Adoption Choices of Colorado
Adoption Choices, Inc. is a private, non-profit adoption agency licensed by the state and leader in the adoption community. We have been assisting birth parents, children, and adoptive parents in Colorado since 2002. Our staff has a genuine commitment to providing an empathetic, empowering, and progressive experience to all involved in the adoption process. For more information on adoption please contact Adoption Choices of Colorado. We can be reached via our website or phone 303-670-4401.
Support Adoption Choices
Adoption Choices, Inc. is partnering with Crowdrise, a fundraising website for nonprofits, to help our adoptive parents and birth parents with much needed financial assistance. We understand that expenses keep clients from fulfilling their dreams. Both with birth parents making a plan for adoption, and with adoptive parents growing their family. It is our mission to provide financial assistance through grants and scholarships, awarded annually in November, in honor of National Adoption Month. Funds assist adoptive parents with matching and placements, adoption finalization and helping birth mothers improve their lives through higher education — and much more.
However, we can’t do it alone. Please read up on our programs and donate money where you are able. Your donation will make a huge impact.
About the Author
Taylor Tsakopulos, the bestselling student. She has interned locally in Denver and internationally in Dublin, Ireland, taken classes/workshops and worked odd jobs and yet always comes back to being a student and the desire to learn or create.
She is a jack of all trades (i.e. a Gemini). She is a Denver-based writer, creator, artist and student. A graduate from Metropolitan State University of Denver (MSU).
When she isn’t creating content she’s off dancing and hiking. Always chasing after new things and experiences. After living and working in Europe, she is hungry for more.
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Pregnancy self-care: 8 ways to look after yourself while pregnant. (2018, April 16). Retrieved March 2, 2020, from https://www.houseofwellness.com.au/health/tips/8-ways-to-look-after-yourself-during-pregnancy
Self-Care During Pregnancy. (2016, November 29). Retrieved March 2, 2020, from https://www.babyandcompany.com/self-care-during-pregnancy/
Kitchens, Tia. (2020, February 14). 7 Handy Tips for Self-Care During Your Unplanned Pregnancy. Retrieved March 2, 2020, from https://www.adoptionchoicesofnevada.org/self-care-during-your-unplanned-pregnancy/