We wanted a gap between our kids, but even if we were to rush getting pregnant again (and have a healthy, full pregnancy this time), our children would have at least a four-year age difference. Isaac has stopped asking whether or not he’s going to be a big brother, and has given up talking about a baby at all anymore. And although I’m definitely not considered old by any means, I feel my own biological clock ticking.
All this is to say that Ben and I are absolutely planning to try again, in our own time. We’ll know when it feels right, and we’ll follow our intuitions. But in the meantime, there are a few things I’ve been doing to prepare for as healthy of a future pregnancy as I can hope for.
Therapy. As soon as we found out we had miscarried, Ben and I knew it would be essential for me to see a counselor. I started seeing someone after the procedure, and it has helped hugely to talk to an outsider about life. Two of the biggest takeaways I’ve gotten from therapy: Writing and meditating are non-negotiables for me. If I don’t do them, I will backslide.
Self-Care. In addition to writing and meditating, I’ve found that my introversion necessitates time for just me. Some days this comes in the form of exercise (I am finally back to my morning walks!); others it’s jumping in the ocean or cooking a meal for family and friends while listening to my favorite songs. Either way, it’s been pivotal for me to take time for myself and connect inward.
Creating. I truly believe that the process of creating a human being internally is similar to the process of creating externally, so I’ve been focusing on creating something every day. Food. Art. A lego building. Earrings. Whatever. I don’t want to lose that connection to my inner creative goddess… so I make sure to honor her every day.
Teas, Infusions, and Tinctures. Both before and during my last pregnancy I drank a ton of red raspberry and stinging nettle infusion for strengthening the uterus and nutritionally supporting my body’s needs. I’ve started back at making a quart of each every other day and drinking at least a cup of each infusion. I’ve also started gathering herbs from the garden (mainly lemon balm and mint) and creating our own refreshing teas. I’ve never been a caffeine person, but I feel it especially important to reduce my caffeine while we think about pregnancy again. Lastly, I’ve continued to take chlorella daily. Of course, prenatals and fish oils are taken daily as well.
I worry that I won’t ever be fully ready to put myself in the vulnerable position of pregnancy again, but I trust that it will happen as it’s meant to, and that – as a family – we’ll be able to handle whatever life gifts us with next.