For the past 7 months, I have struggled to be consistent with content. Not only did I move and my life changed drastically, but I was constantly stuck feeling like what I had to say wasn’t good enough. Several times over, I’ve drafted blog posts only to end up deleting them because I felt like they weren’t interesting or “trendy” enough. I’d frequently ask myself, “why would anyone care or be interested in this?” I forgot the most important part about my blog – it’s just that.. MY BLOG. I forgot that I started my blog as a place to express myself, only to find that there are so many of you who have experienced the same things I have. I made the decision today to get back to writing my truth, not because it’s trendy, but because its real.
Just a short while ago, I announced my pregnancy in the first vlog that I’ve dropped in awhile. I was so excited to share the successful news, given that I have also shared my struggles. Throughout the video, I shared information about the physical struggles I’ve been facing, wanting to offer insight into my pregnancy. What I didn’t share are the challenges that I have been facing mentally and emotionally, for fear of being judged. I realize now that the mental and emotional side of my narrative are just as important, if not more. As a woman and a young adult, there are so many challenges and insecurities we face within ourselves on a daily basis. When you add the fact that a little human is growing inside of you, imagine it becoming 20x worse.
Prior to becoming pregnant, I feared that being a mother might never be an option for me. Now having become pregnant, I worry every day about making it to full term or that my baby may suffer from a developmental or physical challenge. Each day I walk by the mirror feeling less and less like myself – less attractive, less motivated, not as strong – less of Alexis. The thing no one tells you is how stressful becoming a first time mom can be. It is easy fearing that you’re not ready, you’re not doing enough, or that you have no idea what you’re doing. I spend most of my day worrying about what kind of mom I’d be, afraid that I won’t be able to give my baby all the things he/she will need. Suddenly, stability and finances are the forefront of every thought and it is frustrating feeling like things aren’t falling into place fast enough.
No one tells you that you become anxious and scared, never knowing what decisions are the right ones and feeling misunderstood. You aren’t you anymore. There isn’t much time to focus on everything you needed or wanted prior to getting pregnant because now you are focused on not letting your new little human down. I find myself needing my mother more now than I ever have. We have always been close, but I find myself drawn to her more intensely. It feels like she’s the only one that sees me and gets it. Without saying much, she hears me and knows what it feels like because she’s felt it.
Two of the biggest things I’ve learned in this tough time are:
- Be Good to Yourself. Take a break from all the feelings, thoughts, and expectations of yourself AND others. Allow yourself to feel, even when it offends others. Stop apologizing for what you are experiencing. Forgive yourself. Do things that will make you happy first (no one can take care of you, like you).
- Build Your Mom Village. There is comfort in surrounding yourself with a group of strong woman who share your experiences, offer meaningful advice, and encourage you when you can’t encourage yourself.