The following is a letter I wrote myself about 5 years ago. I came across it recently when I was sorting through the Notes app on my phone. I keep an absurd amount of notes at any given time – song and blog ideas, quotes, lists, reminders… a little bit of everything. And I suppose I felt the desire one day to contemplate what my future pregnant self might need to hear. It was really cool to read… almost a time capsule of sorts.
It wasn’t something I intended to be for public viewing so it’s written a bit carelessly; It pains me not to edit it… but I won’t. I’d like it to remain as authentic as possible. I found reading this to be such a comfort, and it made me smile. It’s also inspired me to write another letter to my future self – to new-mum-me. Perhaps there will be something comforting, familiar, and warm in reading my own advice and opinions for the mother version of myself.
Written sometime in 2015…
Dear Pregnant Me,
Firstly, congratulations. I’m not sure if you’re excited or your scared… or both! But either way, congrats are in order.
Being that this is a letter from your younger, less-wise, less-knowledgable (and probably less-tactful self) I’ll ask in advance for your good humour whilst reading my letter.
I am proud of you for this commitment. I know that it’s something you’ve struggled with on and off for years and that you’ve wound up here is amazing and admirable.
I am nervous for you… I’m nervous about how we will react to a changing body, about what changes will occur – physically, mentally, hormonally…
I am scared about how this will change our life. About unfinished business and travel. I’m scared that I haven’t accomplished enough. I’m scared I won’t be a good example. I’m scared that I am bringing a child into a world that has so many scary things. So I hope that you are braver than me. Well, I KNOW that you are braver than me.
I am fascinated and totally psyched about this tiny human wiggling around in there. And poking it periodically. As a body/anatomy nerd – this will be the opportunity of a lifetime.
I am mourning for you the loss of wine, sushi and a full-on yoga practice for a duration of time.
I have never doubted your ability to meet this challenge face on and do a great job. I think you will do a great job as a parent. You will have some shitty days as all do, but I think you have gained a lot of knowledge – and hopefully even more at this point. Patience will be your lifeline and your greatest friend… please tell me you’re more patient than I – because we will NEED to be!
Here’s my advice for this pregnancy… (as an unmarried, childless person that really knows nothing)
- nap as often as you want to. Seriously. Like every day. I mean it.
- Eat sensibly.
- Meditate. Can you try to work this in regularly? (I’m *still* trying to get into a groove right now. Maybe I’ll have this figured out for you by then)
- practice yoga (modify where you need to… but don’t leave the mat behind)
- exercise sensibly
- take care of you… do things for yourself, be selfish, spend your time exactly the way you want to – let no one tell you differently.
- Keep close friends close.
I am concerned about you post-partum.I am nervous about your reaction to your physical body as you have a bit of a rough past with your self image… I am scared about unfinished business and how it could play into this. So please, please be mindful – and take the extra care that’s needed for your mental health. Be patient with yourself. Take time and continue to do what you need to support yourself. Also, don’t read into that new-mom stuff too much. EVERYone has an opinion these days and that judgey crap does nothing good for the soul. People raised babies perfectly well before Facebook and Pinterest. I fully believe it’s possible to continue to do so without it.