preggo lady
Practical Living

Winter Pregnancy Wellness: Finding Joy In Seasonal Challenges

It’s December now, we are officially in the winter season! As winter weaves its frosty tapestry across some part of the world, there is some undeniable magic in the air. This enchanting and charming season can come with its own set of challenges. Sometimes people get depressed with the cold weather and shorter day times. Luckily for me, I’m originally from Taiwan and currently living in California, so snowy weather challenges are not exactly on my to-do list! Most of the time winter doesn’t bother me much; in fact, I’m one of those weirdos who gets excited for more than just the holiday season- I’m talking winter excitement, baby! 

Now, I don’t mind the cold., but there is one annoying thing I need to worry about – the stormy rainy season in California. As someone managing rental properties for homeowners, the high winds and wet weather might cause some unwanted damage. Just the thought of what could happen sometimes gives me anxiety. Argh…

New Challenges

Anyway, despite the potential rainy hurdles, I’m usually thrilled for the winter, and it’s not just about the holiday season. Typically, during this time I pack my bags and travel back home to Taiwan. However, this year, my winter routine has been disrupted, all thanks to my pregnancy!

My mom is overly concerned and doesn’t want me flying around, even though I’ve reassured her that my doctor has approved travel until I’m 7 months pregnant. So, no more babymoon, the Frankfurt Book Fair, and Taiwan is off the travel itinerary. Now, with my expected due date getting close, winter is taking on a whole new meaning for me. I feel trapped. Most of the time I am uncomfortable and in pain, and I haven’t been able to sleep for a while. People are worried about me getting cold, and that my life has become boring. The mix of cold weather and pregnancy has brought a shift in my mood! Now, I may relate to “Winter Blues.”

How do I plan on surviving this winter? Don’t let winter blues and pregnancy beat you down. Instead of resisting the cold and darkness, embrace the unique experience! I will share my tips and plans with you! Hopefully, I will not just survive but thrive during this hurdle. 

Maximize Natural Light Exposure

I’m not a daylight person. This year, I noticed that limited daylight might cause some of the winter blues for me. For me, I make an effort to maximize your exposure to natural light. I open most of my blinds during the day and try to sit close to a window! Getting exposure to natural light helps regulate your circadian rhythm and it can boost up your mood. If you want, take a jacket and do some walking around your neighborhood during the daytime as well.

Stay Active, Safely

Exercise is an excellent mood booster and it is also highly recommended during pregnancy too! I’m really bad at keeping up with my exercise. Especially now during winter and with a giant tummy, exercise is much less appealing! Don’t be like me! Being a lazy bum is not going to improve things for you. Look for pregnancy- friendly exercises that you like and just suck it up and do it! Keep up your exercise can also help you to have a better and easier delivery.

Socialize and Stay Connected

Being pregnant can easily lead to becoming socially isolated especially during the winter months! However, staying connected with others is very crucial. Combat this by planning gatherings with friends and family. You can have your gatherings in person or virtually. Personally, I prefer in person; I feel virtual events still isolate myself from the world! I need to go out and change my surroundings; that’s how I keep my wellness. You can also join some expecting mothers group on Facebook or your local community. Since everyone is expecting, you can share your current struggles and experiences with each other. Supporting others can also be one of source of comfort and joy during this tough time! Another tip is to stay away from toxic people. You don’t need negative energy around you. It’s bad for you and your baby! 

Create a Cozy Nest

If you are someone afraid of the cold, you can make your home into a haven of warmth and comfort. Invest a little money in a soft blanket you like and some candles. I would suggest using natural and unscented candles if you are pregnant because the scent might make you nauseous. Pick a spot that you find most comfortable, and you decorate with your favorite items that make you happy. When you feel uneasy, you can just stay in that cozy nest to boost up your mood or calm you down! This is not just for your emotional well- being but it’s also good for your baby’s development. Happy mom, happy baby!

Calming Mindful Practice

As your pregnancy develops, some people might have more unwanted symptoms that cause discomfort. Don’t let your pregnancy experience become daunting and dreadful. Incorporate some mindfulness techniques into your daily routine. Whether it’s meditation, yoga or breathing exercises, those simple practices can help you manage your stress and anxiety. They can also help you sleep better as well. I use the Calm app as my white noise machine when I can’t fall sleep. Another tool I use is: Meditation for inner peace. It’s just a 11-minute video with yoga with Adriane! Be curious, try all the mindfulness technique you find, see what you like, and start incorporating those exercises into your daily life! 

Plan Indoor Activities

If you feel trapped at home because of the winter months, your pregnancy or both, that means it’s time to explore new hobbies or revisit old ones that you used to enjoy! I haven’t had time to read for a while due to my busy schedule and now that I’m close to my due dates, I’ve been picking up my reading and also searching for reading lists for my baby. I’ve always been a non-fiction reader but with my pregnancy, I have been adventuring into illustrations, picture books and fictions! That’s also a new discovery!

Another old hobby I picked up was journaling and practicing my writing. The pandemic has changed my work environment a lot; many tasks and meeting are all scheduled on digital platforms, calendar, and project management programs and that made me stop using my planner and fountain pens. Now that I have more daily life tasks because of my baby’s arrival; I started using my planner to do my lists. Also, the feeling of writing calms me down sometimes when I am having mood swings. Engaging in hobbies really help maintain a positive mindset! If you don’t have a favorite one yet, it’s the perfect opportunity to explore one now!

Seek Professional Support

If the winter blue or pregnancy- related emotions become overwhelming, don’t hesitate to seek professional support. You can reach out to your insurance provider to see what kind of services or help they offer. I remember at my beginning of pregnancy, my insurance provider reached out to me monthly to chitchat with me to ensure my mental health is in a good state. They also provide wellness tips to me to help me navigate through some difficulties time. Therefore, don’t be afraid to seek professional support. A therapist or counselor can help you cope with your unique situation. Everyone has different issues; there is no shame on asking for help!

Winter can be lonely! Combining pregnancy may be stressful! Don’t suffer by yourself. Don’t be shy to reach out to your loved ones; they can be your biggest support to help you deal with your challenges! I hope my tips can help you navigate with winter blue and the emotional struggle of pregnancy! Stay positive and enjoy your little cozy nest you build for yourself. Winter is not just a season full of cold and darkness. It’s also a perfect place for you to create new memories and discover new interests or even build new connections. Don’t hide yourself from the world! Come out and enjoy your new adventures.

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