If you’re still doing the emotional loop-de-loop, you’re experiencing a bit more than run-of-the-mill hormonal fluctuations now that you're housing a fully functioning placenta that's producing its own hormones.
You may be feeling overwhelmed for a variety of personal reasons, especially if you weren’t planning this pregnancy and your life is on an unexpected trajectory that ends in motherhood, baby poop and sleepless nights.
On one hand, you have this amazing new life growing inside of you which is exciting if not unbelievable... and on the other, you’re dealing with your own rapidly changing life and body whether you’re ready or not.
To add to your sense of disconnection and confusion, many of your bodily changes are so gradual you barely notice them at first and then suddenly they’re impossible to ignore. Some symptoms are internal or mysterious enough to induce bouts of anxiety, not to mention the pains and aches that litter your daily background of bodily sensations with no warning or explanation of the cause.
Add to that the fact pregnancy increases your progesterone levels which increases GABA (a relaxing neurotransmitter) in the brain, you might even be feeling a bit of a brain “fog”, making it more difficult to get a grasp on how you’re feeling and why you’re struggling to get onto an even keel emotionally.
Pregnancy is riddled with tiny and serious sources of anxiety and excitement that can congregate and produce bouts of emotional cycles in the most rational minded of women. Yes, mood swings are a normal reaction and not to be a further source of anxiety!
Take a deep breath slowly. Inhale a nice calm lungful of good air and hold it in for a pausing second before letting it out.
The mood swings you’re feeling are partially fueled by elevated hormone levels -- including cortisol (the stress hormone) as well as your own personal sense of control (or lack thereof) over your pregnancy and life and how the two may be in conflict.
If you’re feeling chronically stressed and anxious and can't seem to combat these emotions via yoga, meditation, journaling, exercise or other relaxing activities, don’t be too proud to seek help from friends, family or ask for advice from your caregiver on a possible treatment plan.
Whatever method you choose, it's important you dig in and figure out a plan to combat your various sources of stress and anxiety so that you can enjoy your pregnancy rather than feeling like a crazed woman on a crying jag who’s about to burst into song and dance shortly before falling asleep.