In this time of slowing down while on maternity leave and stuck inside due to the virus, I’ve been trying to find things to help keep me relaxed and happy. I’m a person that tends to get down when confined, especially if the weather is not great enough to enjoy – the winter blues. Here in Northern Michigan the weather in March and April is hit or miss. Some days are beautiful and sunny and 60 degrees while the next day it could be 30 degrees and snowy. You just don’t know what you’re going to get in the spring months!
To try and combat the seasonal blues and frustrations with confinement, I’ve been practicing more self-care and personal development. In a previous post I talked about habits that I’m trying to build and some are more catered to being pregnant right now. Here are a few ideas to make pregnancy feel extra enjoyable no matter what trimester you’re in.
- Take a bath – this has been my top favorite self-care task to take a few times a week. I stocked up on some Epsom salt with lavender essential oils and with that, a great smelling candle lit, and a good book, it makes for a very relaxing time.
- Paint your nails – obviously as the belly gets bigger the toes are out of reach but instead focus on your fingernails. Having painted nails just leaves one feeling cleaned up and fancy. In normal times a mani-pedi would definitely be called for but being in quarantine gives you a chance to use all those polishes you’ve bought and don’t use!
- Lotion up – A good smelling lotion can make you feel like a new person. After I take my bath or shower I apply Belli Elasticity Belly Oil liberally to help with dry skin but to also smell good and just feel relaxed. This is the perfect time to do a little massage and really loosen up tight muscles or achy spots. I’ve found this helps especially with my restless legs at night time. In the mornings I apply Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Lotion for extra stretch mark protection.
- Listen to a podcast – to me podcasts are one of the top forms of self-development and self-care there could be as it helps with growth and perspective. I only listen to two pregnancy related podcasts called The Pregnancy Podcast (a source for evidence-based information about pregnancy symptoms, complications, options for birth, and more) and Built to Birth (a podcast by a Californa-based doula who interviews and shares women’s empowering birth stories).
- Get outside – fresh air and sunshine can do wonders for your state of mind. I always feel so much better after I sit out on my deck for a little bit with a cup of tea or a book to read. The weather hasn’t cooperated as much for this one lately but on the days it does I take full advantage of it!
- Move your body – even if it’s just a walk around your block or some stretches in your living room, moving your limbs loosens you up and just overall can make you feel less achy and improve your mind set. Being on maternity leave now I try to stretch every day and sit on the exercise ball to help my hips out.
- Improve your sleep – one of the best things I’ve purchased for this pregnancy was my body pillow. It’s shaped like a C so I can snuggle up in to it or have it cradle behind me and it has been a game changer for comfort, especially as my belly has gotten bigger because it can provide support for it.
- Drink lots of water – this one is definitely overstated but it’s true. Drinking lots of water is both good for you to stay hydrated and to build up the baby’s amniotic fluid. I’ve been super thirsty this pregnancy, probably cause I have two babies’ fluid to build up, and I can chug down ice cold water like it’s about to run out.
- Keep a pregnancy journal – as soon as I found out I was pregnant I went on to Amazon and bought this pregnancy journal to start documenting everything. Of course at the time I didn’t know there were two babies in there so there is only one journal (they’ll just have to share it when they’re older) but between writing down my thoughts and feelings and starting this blog, it’s been so fun to go back and read our journey together.
- Spend time with your significant other – this one is easy to do being in quarantine but I’ve found that spending some quality time with my husband helps to improve my mood and allows us to bond over our babies while they’re in my belly. If this is your first pregnancy, like it is for me, enjoy the alone time together!
Those are my top 10 pregnancy self care ideas that I’ve been implementing during my pregnancy. Hopefully they’ll help give you some ideas of things to do for yourself during this quarantine time and practicing social distancing.
What is your favorite pregnancy self-care task to do? Let me know in the comments!