4 reasons why pregnancy was easier in my (almost) 40s.
"Elle, you make pregnancy look so easy! How do you do it?"
I’ve been hearing this a lot over the past few months, probably because I’m 39 and there’s still a real stigma around becoming a mom in your late 30s and 40s. I think that, because I’m *ahem* more mature, there’s an expectation that I should be tired all the time, be crazy hormonal or just generally look and feel like crap.
The thing is, it actually has been an easy pregnancy – a lot easier than I thought it would be. But truth be told, it's taken a lot of hard work to get to this point.
Obviously, I can’t speak for every woman who’s having a baby later in life – every woman’s journey is going to be unique. But I can share my own experience and “secrets” as to how I’ve been able to enjoy a happier and healthier pregnancy at 39.
Being in a loving relationship – with myself.
The biggest difference between being pregnant now compared to when I was pregnant in my 20s is the fact that I’ve made self-love a priority. That means being a parent to Elle first and cutting myself some slack. Because I recognize that I’m not perfect, I forgive myself when I make a mistake and I’ve given myself permission to ask for help when I need it. (Ironically, I think that embracing your imperfections is ultimately what ends up making you a perfect parent!)
Life experience, patience and confidence.
I’ve been through enough by now that I have a healthier perspective when it comes to my life and my pregnancy. In other words, I’m not gonna freak out over every little thing. Instead, I take life as it comes instead of dwelling on the past or stressing about the future. Believe me, when you cut the stressors out of your life, it makes pregnancy a lot more enjoyable.
Getting healthy in mind, body and spirit.
Eating mindfully and exercising regularly has made a HUGE difference in how I’ve felt throughout this pregnancy. When I was in my 20s, I was in a toxic relationship, wasn’t working out and took to eating for comfort. I ended up gaining 40 pounds (which looks like a whole lot more on someone who’s only 5’3”). I felt like garbage. This time around, I was determined to eat better and treat my body with the love and respect it deserves. It also helps that my husband owns the best gym in Toronto FORME Fitness where they emphasize a holistic approach that combines strength training, nutrition and proper supplementation. I’m a huge fan of supplements now because I’ve felt the benefits. They’ve been a game changer when it comes improving my energy levels and making sure my baby and I are getting all the nutrients we need. Definitely worth the investment.
Surrounding myself with beautiful people who love and support me.
I’m incredibly lucky and so grateful to have such an amazing group of people in my life to keep me grounded. Knowing that my husband, my daughter and my wonderful friends and family are here to support me and act as my own personal cheerleaders gives me a tremendous amount of inspiration.
For me this pregnancy has been less about age and all about attitude. Whether you’re growing a human inside of you or not, you’d be amazed how energizing and comforting a healthy and positive attitude can be.
Do any of you moms and moms-to-be have any other “secrets” to a happier and healthier pregnancy you’d like to share? I’d love to hear them!