The thing about viruses is that they happen at the most inconvenient times possible – and that’s exactly what seems to be happening within this COVID-19 pandemic. Point blank: I’m not scared about catching the virus. However, I’m very anxious about how the USA is responding to this pandemic – especially with the possible quarantine. The area I live in has already shut down basically everything except the grocery stores. Which makes me wonder… how should I prep for the last ten weeks of pregnancy during a pandemic?
I’ve been looking at a bunch of those “Third Trimester Check Lists” lately. Hitting that big 30 Weeks mark has been truly terrifying, all too real, and a bit overwhelming. For both good and bad reasons, of course. In any case, I figure it’s time to make my own “surviving an outbreak checklist” and really tweak it around top priorities. The thing about pandemics is that they don’t come and go according to your schedule! So I’ll set up a plan into three different categories:
- Prepping My Mental Health
- Preparing My Body
- Setting Up My Home
This will be my survival guide for the next ten weeks as I figure out how to accustom myself to spending the rest of my pregnancy during a pandemic.
#1: Prepping My Mental Health
Pregnancy during a pandemic is honestly stressful. The thing is…stress isn’t good for baby Ariella. So in order to combat this, it’s important that part of my 10 Week Prep includes tons of mental health care. That’s why I’m so glad my Nana gave me a pregnancy journal at my baby shower last week. Regardless, the best way to truly prepare is to ask yourself: what should I do for ME to prepare my mental health for having a baby? This is how I came up with the first three things on my checklist:
Join A Few Online Mama Groups
It’s important to remember that you’re not alone. Everything that I’m going through right now, another mama is going through or has already gone through it. That’s why I deem it necessary for us to stick together! However, social distancing is a very polite thing right now. I don’t want to carry to someone, and I don’t want someone else to carry to me. During this pandemic, I believe that the online world will thrive greatly. So get on Facebook and find yourself a group of mamas to vent to, share with, or support! I’ve personally joined a couple of Due Date Groups of mamas, all due in May this year.
Do Some Journaling
As I said before, my Nana got me this very cute pregnancy journal that I can pass down to my baby when she’s old enough. It’s a really great concept! So I think the next part of my plan is to take some time each day to write a little bit in a journal.
Catch Up On Pregnancy Books
Part of easing my anxiety is creating peace of mind for everything that’s going on in my life. Since we’re all practising social distancing, now is a good time to catch up on those pregnancy books and articles that I haven’t gotten around to reading yet!
#2 Preparing My Body
This one seems like it’ll be the most difficult through the pandemic because everything around me in shutting down – including prep classes. So, fingers crossed my Breastfeeding Class doesn’t end up cancelled. Regardless, here are a couple of things on my checklist to help prep my body for having a baby and caring for it:
Labor Prep Tea
It seems surreal that I’ll be giving birth to a baby sometime within the next ten weeks… so I need to prepare my body for that! This company, called Pink Stork, is a women-owned brand that makes products to help women in every stage of her life. From teas to vitamins to bath products, they honestly have thought of everything! So, of course, I wanted to try out their
Daily/Weekly Stretches + Small Workouts
All doctors recommend for you to stay active unless you’re experiencing swelling or pain and avoid strenuous exercise or strength training that could cause an injury to your stomach. However, as long as your careful and exercised BEFORE pregnancy, you can really do any workout you were already doing before.
Staying Active – Benefits for Mom:
- Improved cardiovascular function
- Weight gain management
- Reduced muscular and skeletal discomfort
- Decreased lower extremity swelling
- Reduced risk of developing gestational diabetes and hypertension/preeclampsia
- Improved and stable mood
- Shorter labour
Staying Active – Benefits for Baby:
- Lower body fat
- Improved stress tolerance
- Advanced neurobehavioral maturation
Creating healthier habits now makes it easier to commit even after Ariella gets here. But eating healthier during a COVID-19 outbreak is an increasing struggle as people raid the grocery stores to get a hold of anything left on the shelves.
I’ve been trying to prepare by having snacks pre-setup—hummus and pretzels, hummus and veggies, orange and apple slices, etc.
Setting Up My Home
Okay, maybe I’ll take it back about prepping my body being the hardest part. The thing is, nothing about my house is ready for a body. There’s still SO MUCH to do, and I don’t even know where to begin. Here are some of the things I need to somehow do during a quarantined time:
- Move. Yeah, that’s right. With just ten weeks of pregnancy left – I need to move into a bigger place that supports having a baby.
- Babyproof. Step two, after moving, is babyproofing the new place. Outlet covers, dresser secures, tv mounts – you name it.
- Set Up A Nursery. I get it! I’m behind! I still have a crib to buy, walls to paint, pictures to hang. It’s all turning into one big mess!
- Clean EVERYTHING. If you haven’t listened to the news yet, you should be doing this anyway. And thank you, God, for nesting anxiety! This is one thing I’ve already started on. You are wiping down all the baby things, packing them away in storage to keep clean, etc.