If pregnancy were a marathon, the third trimester would definitely be the last six miles of the course. You can literally taste how close you are to the finish line, yet the end still seems so far away. And you hope you know what awaits you at the finish line - exuberance, joy like you have never experienced before as you finally get to hold your precious newborn baby in your arms. You finally did it, and the fruit of your labor is now yours to behold and enjoy!
But wait - let’s put the brakes on for a second and go back to that marathon analogy. If you have ever run a marathon before or endured any type of intense physical activity, you well know what it feels like at the finish line. While you are elated with joy and thankful that you have finally made it to the end, your body and mind have just been pushed to the limits and endured tremendous challenges through the process. Marathon runners must be proactive in caring for their bodies in the hours, days, and months following their race to ensure they heal and recover properly.
Pregnancy and birth are similar in that the body/mind endure dramatic transformations through the process of growing and birthing a baby into the world, yet as mothers, we often neglect the healing phase following childbirth. Part of preparing yourself for childbirth goes beyond the list of what to pack in your bag for the hospital. It takes a sense of knowing what you are going into and preparing yourself for the changes you will expect and allow yourself the necessary room/time for healing. You see, when it comes to pregnancy and childbirth, many of us get the sugar-coated stories or see the perfectly filtered Instagram squares. Yet, unless you have already been through it yourself, will come to find that childbirth and delivery is quite unlike anything you’ve ever expected.