Pregnancy Dos & Don’ts: All the unsolicited advice
For the entire time I was pregnant I likened it to my cancer journey – you get plenty of unsolicited advice and fear-mongering paranoia don’t do this, don’t eat that, eat this ton of supplements, eat all these vitamins, buy this, buy that. 🙄
It was the only thing I could relate to as well – you’re somewhat anxious and always looking forward to the next scans so you could see what’s going on inside your body. Can’t believe my luck, I got away without any symptoms or pains. The whole long list of pregnancy pains sounds like chemo side effects and I was dreading reliving chemo memories.
I felt encouraged that if I managed cancer and chemo and the years of lingering side effects with chronic pain and menopause, I could suck it up for a couple of months. Instead, chronic pain reversed itself. A rebirth of sorts when hormones were balanced again and I wasn’t feeling 75.
I’m sure everyone has had their share of unsolicited advice and comments. “Oh, you’re small for 6 months!” “Are you sure you’re not having twins?!” Same same but different. I used to get “oh you don’t look sick, you don’t look like you have cancer.” “oh, you look great bald (and bloated).”
Thanks, appreciate all the kind thoughts and gestures, but everyone’s on their own journey. I don’t take offence as I think everyone comes from a good place with good intentions. However, it can sometimes be so overwhelming with people telling you what to do all the time and causing a jerk response of what you shouldn’t be doing.
Of course, common sense will tell you not to do extreme sports as a layman and not get dead drunk on a daily basis while pregnant.
Your body, your health, your pregnancy/cancer. Be your own advocate. A close friend even turned into a Chinese Medicine expert with no qualifications and was chastising my eating habits.
I was seeing a qualified doctor specialised in Traditional Chinese Medicine in particular managing hormones (she fixed my menopause and acne) Dr Ruth Lee at Balance Health is definitely someone you want on your team. Professional, kind and caring and usually err on the side of caution, a little against my gungho mentality after surviving cancer. I trusted her and made adjustments to my lifestyle which she recommended.
I drank a cup of coffee every day because it sparks joy and helps me feel great. Data proves that non-caffeinated doesn’t make a difference. My Obgyn said two cups max a day is fine. I had a sip of alcohol occasionally to taste some exceptional wines.
I drank like a fish in my first trimester because I didn’t find out I was pregnant till I was 10+ weeks along and to get over the initial shock that week, I drank some more because I felt like I really needed it.
I also did taboo things like go for a series of 10 sound baths of gongs and crystal bowls during my first trimester because I didn’t know I was expecting and continued through my second trimester until Dr Ruth told me to stop immediately. Ooops. I really enjoyed the south therapy and it kept my energies vibrating high and I felt awesome. And I defied this advice because I felt better for it.
Also, every person seem to have an opinion on how you will birth. Theage old argument of a C section vs vaginal birth. Suddenly, everyone is a midwife/obgyn advocating natural birth without epidural – and alot of these folks have never given birth. We have science and we have medicine in the 21st century, why not listen to the qualified professionals – whatever is the safest and best way for the baby and mother to bring the baby into this world.
Now that I’ve been through an elective C section, I wonder why people suffer and labour through it all when there is a short cut. That’s just my perspective and I’m glad I went with the advice of my obgyn – the safest best way to get the baby out. The wound still hurts but it’s completely bearable and it doesn’t alter daily life at all.
I think like with cancer or any difficult times in life, mental state is so important. Fear is such a crippling feeling that just overshadows everything and that’s all your subconscious and consciousness can hang on to.
I’ve been working hard to exercise gratefulness in life and to embrace all the good that’s happened in my life – sometimes it’s hard to believe after shitty things have happened. And I suppose with an unexpected pregnancy, and a healthy, insanely cute pet human, I should continue to focus on feeling well, vibrating high than worrying about the million possibilities of what could go wrong – I’ve been there with cancer, it’s very exhausting and you lose so much time living.
The monk Venerable Tenzin Drachom who leads my dharma meditation class once said that once we get over the fear of death then can we fully live our lives. There is no fear and this is a cycle of nature of change, and that’s life.birth plan, birthing, c section, giving birth, health, life, motherhood, preg, pregnancy taboos, vaginal birth