As an expecting mom, you are already dealing with anxieties surrounding delivery and motherhood. Now in this time of COVID-19, there is a whole new layer of stress to navigate. Your well-laid plans that you had for delivering your baby may be significantly altered.
Remember though, that you are resilient and resourceful, and you have professionals, family and friends who are ready to help. My suggestions for you? Focus on what you can control, practice at home before the big day and trust in the amazing care you will receive from your birthing team. Here are some key points to keep in mind:
- Talk with your provider about their current policy regarding birth partners and/or doulas being present in the delivery room. If you were planning on a doula, ask them about virtual support services, which can be very effective! Tell them what you are worried about and let them calm your fears with information.
- If you are worried about delivering in a hospital, you might want to investigate alternate options for birth, such as home birth or a birth center. You will need to see if your insurance will cover an alternate location, and you will need to find a provider, like a midwife, to support you at home or a birth center.
- Speak with a therapist. This is an incredibly trying time. Therapists are amazing and can provide you with tools to help you cope. And, there are many services that offer virtual therapy appointments. Reach out for help immediately if you feel like hurting yourself or others.
- Practice at home with your birthing partner and by yourself. Practice your breathing and your bearing down. Try to bear down without holding your breath but rather focus on exhaling forcefully. This will reduce the chances of perineal tearing.
- Prepare your home to receive meals: have a friend, family member or your partner set up a Meal Train. Set a cooler on your front porch so people have a place to put a meal without coming into your home.
- Consider creating a schedule or a parenting contract with your partner. With most people working from home, it will be important to understand your expectations of each other, when each partner is available to be a parent or when that partner needs to work.
- Stay healthy: hydrate (shoot for 60-90 oz per day), eat your veggies and your protein, get some daily physical activity if you can, and remember to breathe.
- Stress management: develop a daily routine of deep breathing or find a meditation app that you can follow.
You will do great! At the end of the day, the goal is to have a healthy baby that you can take home and love. Trust in yourself, your healthcare team and your partner.
Looking for more guidance?
There’s so much content out there on pregnancy care and even more for infants, but what about you? What should you expect for your postnatal health? When should you reintroduce certain activities? What are those “no one told me” scenarios that can be avoided?
Boost your confidence and ability to handle whatever comes during delivery and after bringing Baby home with my new e-course, Self-Care Survival Guide for Expecting Mommies. Launch date: May 2020