Friday, 29 July 2016

Baby Kicks

I heard the baby's heartbeat for the first time last week - it sounded like a steam train! It was a magical moment. But feeling the baby move for the first time was probably the most incredible part of the week. Initially I thought it was just my stomach digesting all the food I'd eaten :) but soon it became clear they were little punches and kicks from inside. 

Experiencing first sensations of baby kicking
With each day and each milestone I feel more connection and more love for this baby. Its quite amazing how much I can sense myself changing and growing more protective of this tiny being in my belly. 

I'm also finally feeling healthy and happy again. The first few months have been pretty traumatic... morning sickness, headaches, parasites, but the worst part was feeling completely unstable - emotionally and energetically. Since April my world has turned upside down and I've had to totally change my perspective and attitude. Just assimilating all the new information that had been thrown at me (along with those wonderful pregnancy hormones) took its toll. 

People have understandably been asking me what I'm going to do, where I'm going to live, how do I plan to raise this baby...? The answer is "I don't know!" But I do know that I will figure it out. I have had to start over from zero a few times now and the one thing I know I have is strength...

I have experienced depression before, much like many people I know, and struggled through it on my own. Then last year I went through a period of having crippling anxiety attacks, brought on by lots of small things that when piled together created a mountain of stress that I just couldn't climb. Blackouts, heart palpitations, nausea and shaking were all coming up on a daily basis for me to deal with. Not fun.

During both these periods I felt like a failure. I thought I was weak to be unable to deal with... life! I felt ashamed and alone. Luckily this time I sought the help of a talk therapist who worked with me so that I could see that I wasn't weak at all. As I wrote down all the things that had happened over the last couple of years she showed me that people who experience anxiety actually have enormous strength and resilience. We have been able to cope with so much that we have broken through the ceiling of our capacity for stress, and flipped a switch in our brain to make our bodies react physically to the smallest of things. 

I think this is the body's way of telling us to take a giant step back and take the lid off the pressure cooker! Be kinder to ourselves - we are NOT machines! As someone who works with energy for healing, I also believe that illnesses like depression and anxiety can occur when our flow of energy is blocked and is not being channelled effectively. When we stifle ourselves by focusing on what we "should" be doing, rather than what we WANT to do.

I am so lucky to have the support of my parents, which has allowed me to take the pressure off myself and really process everything. I've been able to be gentle and kind to myself without (too much) guilt. My body, mind and spirit needed time, love and kindness to prepare... Although I have felt a change in me since the moment I saw the little peanut, it has taken time for me to catch up with my body.

As I write this I am being pummelled from the inside by my unborn baby. Sometimes these baby kicks make me jump they are so strong! The midwife mentioned I might start feeling flutterings like butterflies in my tummy when the baby starts to move... butterflies my arse! :)

Now that's a butterfly :)

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