Before a woman even realizes she's pregnant, those pregger hormones might be getting the better of her. Between the fatigue, morning sickness, and irritability, the heightened hormones are telling Mom-t0-be that she's with child, and is likely part of the reason she bought that over-the-counter pregnancy test (paired with the fact that she missed her monthly cycle). Hormones during pregnancy are in overdrive and can make even the simplest of situations spiral into a flurry of adult tantrums, meltdowns, and overreactions.
While pregnancy hormones can be blamed on a number of unexplained feelings – anger, sadness, full on b*tchiness – there are some feels that you can’t accuse of being caused by those pesky hormones. These feels stem from your brain, as opposed to your glands, so if you’re wondering why some hormones are getting the better of you, it could be the fact that you’re going to be a mother, and not because your body is producing a baby.
If you’re pregnant, are planning to become pregnant, or have ever been pregnant, it might be interesting for you to know that your feelings are pretty universal, and most of them are not because you’re hormonal. It’s even nice to know that these feels are natural, even if your out-of-control estrogen and progesterone can’t be blamed.
The moment you realize you’re pregnant is the moment you begin to doubt everything. You’ll wonder if you’ll be able to be a good mother and consider that you probably don’t have what it takes. This doubt can sometimes be crippling, but it’s definitely a feeling that hormones don’t have the ability to stir up. This doubt stems from the realization that you’re going to be a parent with unlimited responsibilities and a commitment that will last for eighteen (or more!) years. You’ll question if you’re even ready to have a baby, whether that be physically, financially, or emotionally ready. You’ll doubt you’ll be able to discipline your child or teach them life’s basics. You’ll doubt you can afford to feed them organic foods, while also buying them toys as they outgrow and get bored of others. And you’ll definitely doubt you’ll be able to maintain your Starbucks addiction on a mom’s budget.
14 Crippling Anxiety
Paired with the feeling of doubt, anxiety begins in your head (not in your glands). The overwhelming fear that can attack a new mother cannot be blamed on any hormone that is heightened by pregnancy. This sneaks up on women who let fear, pressure, and lack of control get to her, causing her to stress out. While it’s difficult to control feelings of anxiety, it’s best to keep those feels in check while you’re growing a tiny human in your body. Anxiety and stress are nasty culprits for causing harmful side effects to you and your fetus, and high blood pressure is just one of them. When you’re feeling anxiety in your pregnancy, it may not be blamed on hormones, but it can be controlled. Get a foot rub, take a bath, or talk it out with your partner. Even get away for a babymoon if you can. Anything is worth trying if it means a healthy, happy pregnancy.
13 Serious Insecurity
Aside from the mental insecurities of being a good parent, pregnancy brings on a whole other bag of different types of ways that you can feel insecure. The biggest insecurity (next to adequately handling motherhood) is the changes in your body. Between the additional weight, sweat, hair growth, and acne, pregnancy isn’t as beautiful as people claim it to be. For a new mom, these changes are especially hard to handle in the third trimester, and can cause her to retreat into her bed, rather than flaunt that burgeoning bump of hers. Another type of insecurity stems from the mental downslide that pregnancy causes. Fatigue, memory loss, and the literal transformation of your brain can temporarily cause your work to go downhill, which can make any hardworking, braniac mama feel like she’s losing her edge; a fact that is difficult to accept for moms who strive for the ultimate work-life balance.
12 Overwhelming Vulnerability
In all their pregnant glory, women who are carrying a child can feel hella vulnerable now that their body is housing a growing infant. You almost immediately go into protection-mode to keep that womb comfy-cozy for nine long months. Aside from your own desire to take a step back from seemingly wild activities you used to do (even if that activity was rearranging furniture twice a month), other people will also feel a need to protect and serve a pregnant woman. Everyone will ask to hold the door, carry your overnight bag or groceries, and tell you not to help, even in cases you would really like to offer some sort of contribution. Between all of this, it’s easy for pregnant women to feel helpless and weak. Before pregnancy, you were capable of anything. Now, you can’t walk down the street without feeling like you’re defenceless and craving your very own bodyguard.
11 Severe Boredom
Nine months is a long time to wait to welcome your first baby, especially if you’ve been trying to conceive for months, or even years. The waiting period between doctors appointments and ultrasounds can seem like it’s taking forever when you’re anxious to check up on the little one even only a few days after seeing your little boy or girl on the grainy, black and white ultrasound screen. Between check-ups and waiting until your maternity leave starts, boredom will strike in the early months, when you realize you can’t even go out and do many things nowadays. Fatigue and morning sickness is only a couple of obstacles, but add not being able to eat your favourite foods, drink your favourite cocktails, or even workout the same way, it doesn’t leave much for the mommy-to-be to keep busy. And if you happen to be the not-so-lucky mama who gets put on bedrest, boredom will become your sole emotion.
10 Horrible Humiliation
There are many cases throughout the duration of your pregnancy where you could feel humiliated. Pregnancy brings about a level of shame that by the time your baby arrives, you’ll be numb to any sort of embarrassment. But in the meantime, you’ll be examined so closely you’ll wish you could hide your face under a pillow to deal with the intense level of exposure. From peeing in cups to being probed, there’s no room for primping or presentation. You’ll want to shave and shower religiously to maintain your freshness, but hemorrhoids and exhaustion will make you forgo the lather and rinse and opt for the couch and duvet instead. We can’t forget about the weird bowel movements and unpredictable flatulence that pregnancy brings. When you let one rip in the middle of a meeting, you’ll be cowering and trying to hide your flushed face.
9 So Much Gratitude
The experience of pregnancy isn’t all negative feelings (although it can seem that way sometimes). One of the best feelings you’re going to experience is that of gratitude, and no pregnancy hormone is going to cause this overwhelming feeling of being #blessed. You’ll thank your lucky stars and the high heavens for allowing your body to house a growing baby you can call your very own. You’ll feel grateful towards everyone you’re surrounded by – your partner, your doctors, even your friends for being so generous, supportive, and patient throughout this new and curious time in your life. You’ll want to thank everyone which such genuinity that even the pizza delivery man will feel touched by your heartfelt gratitude. The only time you can blame your gratitude on your hormones is when you start crying from the moment of thanking someone, but the appreciation is 100% legit.
8 Intense Fascination
Pregnancy is a super weird and amazing time for women, and no amount of hormones will create that deep sense of interest in what’s happening in, and to, your body. With every week that progresses in the nine months of pregnancy, there is something new to discover or learn. This is why new moms are obsessed with comparing their little ones to various sizes of fruits week after week. They check their baby’s growth religiously every seven days (and might even read ahead to know what to expect for the following week). Between the expansion of their wombs to the strange desire to cry at every life insurance commercial, mothers-to-be can’t help but be interested in the wonder that is pregnancy. They’ll shelve their novels for books on pregnancy, motherhood, and fetal growth, familiarizing themselves with all the knowledge they need to make it through the final months of pregnancy and ease into motherhood.
7 Overly Optimistic
Pregnancy comes with so much hope and possibility, you can’t not be filled with joy and a positive outlook when you’re expecting. There is so much to look forward to, and you’ve only got a few months to plan for it all. Between choosing the baby outfits, nursery decor, and stocking up on diapers, you can daydream about the day you’ll meet your first baby and all the fun you’ll have together. You’ll look forward to the smiles, the giggles, and even the rough nights (especially if it means getting to snuggle up and comfort your little one). All that positivity and excited outlook is infectious, which is probably where that infamous “glow” actually comes from. The pure optimism is what’s radiating from each and every pore, along with an abundance of other hormones. But hormones aren’t the cause of such happiness – the embracing of a new and enriching chapter of your life is.
6 Terrifying Fear
Occasionally – between all the happiness, tears, and mood swings – fear will creep up on an expecting mother. Since you’re going to be a first-time mom, it’s super natural to feel scared of this massive change in your life. If being afraid of every unknown pain during pregnancy and fearing for your unborn baby’s safety wasn’t enough, you’re probably also going to fear the day you go into labour; will it be painful? Will I need a C-section? Will my baby and I survive? You’ll fear things that you never thought possible until pregnancy occurs. Of course, you’ll also fear the fact that your life will never be the same once you have children. You’ll fear losing touch with your friends, not having time for your hobbies, and even losing the connection between you and your partner. And let’s not forget about the day the hospital tells you that you’re ready to take the baby home. There’s nothing scarier than that first drive home.
5 Sooooo In Love
Carrying a child has a way of bringing out a natural desire to nurture and comfort and share. Other than the love that’s growing between you and your partner, you are also growing a deep affection for your soon-to-be baby. You will have so much love that you can sometimes get emotional from it (but that’s your hormones taking this feeling to the next level). Even if the love you feel for others remains absolute as you discover and wait out your pregnancy, it’s a feeling that can’t be replaced by hormones, nor can it diminish it. Love is constant, but you might just find you have room for more of it as you start to imagine a bigger family. Pregnancy has a way of bringing people closer together; families, friends, you and your favourite food delivery guy. While pregnancy might cause love to grow, it’s definitely not created by those hormones.
4 Seriously Lost
Between the first time you pee on a stick to the first appointment you have, right through to when you take your newborn home, you’re going to have moments where you feel slightly lost. While pregnancy definitely is to blame for this feeling, the hormones are not. Feeling lost is to be expected when your life is about to take on a whole new meaning and you’re going to have to adapt to new responsibilities and living in a way that has been foreign to you until now. You might wonder what your life will become – filled with diapers, binkies, doctor’s appointments, and spit up – and whether you’ll be able to hold on to a shred of your old life. Since your life will now forever be tied to another human beings, feeling lost in who you are now and who you will become can easily distract you from accepting this new challenge, but just know that all moms-to-be are feelings the same feels.
While there will be many days throughout your pregnancy where you’re going to feel less than hot (*cough* first and third trimesters), there will be more than a few days where you’re going to feel like Wonder Woman, and people will definitely take notice of this new you. After the morning sickness and fatigue subsides and your appetite returns, so will your pride and desire to flaunt your blossoming shape. Your rosy-cheeked, dewy glow is on full display, as are your growing assets, including your hips, bosom, and bottom. We can’t forget that you’re fully embracing a side of womanhood that takes a heck of a lot of strength to endure, which makes you feel untouchable and uber feminine. While you’re pregnant, trivial things such as fad diets and bikini bodies no longer take priority, which can be a huge relief to body conscious ladies, allowing them to open up and feel comfortable in their own skin.
Between all the fear and doubt, going into your pregnancy is pretty overwhelming, so it’s not uncommon for women to feel like a big noob. There is so much that women don’t know when it comes to those nine months and the parenting years that come after that, so they turn to a lot of different sources to try to learn it all in as little time as possible. When trying to absorb this information, they turn to people they can trust in asking for advice and answers to all those questions. Their own moms and doctors are the first people they talk to and are willing to accept any answer these seasoned vets give them. The next place they’ll turn to is the Internet and other moms (even if it’s their hairdresser) to learn about the details. While all this trust is great in theory, it’s best to put all that trust in yourself and know that your instincts are what will guide you through this pregnancy and motherhood.
There’s no better pregger feel than that of anticipation! The best thing about this emotion is that it is not just experienced by the mom-to-be, but by everyone – family, friends, co-workers. Everyone is getting ready to greet the growing baby. Anticipation is one of the feelings that your partner and you can share in together and talk about. You both have countdowns on your phones and on your fridge, and it’s not just the due date you’re looking forward to. Every ultrasound is also a chance to get to know your baby a little bit more (and you just love listening to that healthy heartbeat), so you’re darn right you’ll be waiting for those appointments just as eagerly. While this feeling of anticipation fills your belly with something you just can’t shake, hormones are not to blame, and the best way to know that is the fact that you’re not experiencing is alone.
Sources: Psychpage.com, Parents.com