Hand to Hold's Official Blog: Written by Parents for Parents

Listening to Your Body During a High-Risk Pregnancy

Source: Freedigitalphotos.net // Nenetus

Source: Freedigitalphotos.net // Nenetus

When my first pregnancy complication began (even before I knew I was pregnant), it set the tone for a very anxious experience. Throughout the duration of my high-risk pregnancy, I was extremely stressed. With one complication coming up after another, bed rest beginning at home at week 6, anxious became the new normal. I didn’t know how to be pregnant and not stressed and overwhelmed.

I became hyper-vigilant about what was happening in my body.

What does that pull or twinge mean? Is that pain a sign of something bad happening? Should I call the doctor?

I soon realized that the answer to those questions were in me the whole time.

There is no amount of Googling or searching on forums that was going to give me an answer any more accurate than the one that I already had. Before anyone else, I would know when something was going wrong.

The more tuned in I was to my body, the more I realized that it was always talking to me.

My pregnancy was a crash course in realizing that our bodies speak to us in different voices.

Whether you call it your gut, mother’s instinct or intuition, your body is communicating with you in different ways. It may be difficult to hear or trust this voice initially; however, bodies are always telling us what’s happening and what we need to do about it whether we like what they’re saying or not!

There are 2 main voices: a loud one and a quiet one.

Sometimes your body’s voice is loud. It sounds like your body is shouting at you, talking fast like there’s an emergency. It’s trying to get your attention with red flags and warnings. You can almost hear the sirens going off in the background.

That is the voice of anxiety. Of your fears. Your worries. This voice is designed to make you feel like what you are thinking or feeling is true, even when it’s not. It’s meant for you to take action so you can make that voice and that feeling to go away even when there’s nothing you may be able to actually do, which adds to that feeling of helplessness you may be familiar with.

The problem is that many times that voice is wrong. It’s trying to convince you there’s a problem when there isn’t one. Unfortunately, acting on a worry or fear only drives the anxiety higher.

That’s why I started learning to trust the other voice.

It’s the voice of calm and reason. It’s a voice that sounds almost like a newscaster delivering the 6 o’clock news.

It’s quiet, objective and firm. It’s a voice that tells you in a cool, calm, collected manner something isn’t right.

In its calmness, this voice carries a tremendous strength.

It’s a voice I teach my clients never to ignore. But it’s a voice you can only hear when you quiet the loud, anxious one.

During my pregnancy when something was actually wrong, which happened very frequently, it was this voice, not the anxious one, that told me immediately. Every time I listened to it, I was right. Something actually was wrong, even to the surprise of my doctors.

By learning the different voices of your body, you can significantly reduce the stress and helplessness that you feel. You’ll feel calmer instead of feeling at the mercy of your anxiety. You learn to tune out the emergency voice and tune into the voice that actually reporting an emergency.

As I share with every single one of my clients, your body will tell you what to do. You will know when something happening. It’s all about learning how to listen to the right voice.

Parijat Deshpande About Parijat Deshpande

Parijat Deshpande (CA) is a micropreemie mom and the leading high-risk pregnancy expert who specializes in helping women stay pregnant as long as possible, even if they're facing pregnancy complications. Parijat is the host of Delivering Miracles® and is a clinically trained therapist, a women’s wellness expert and an experienced speaker on the impact of stress on health and wellness.

Comments

  1. I don’t care when this article was actually written; G-d led me to find and read it exactly when I need it most.
    I am pregnant with my fourth child – my first pregnancy being completely normal, my second anything but. I delivered twins (children 2 & 3) at the end of my 28th week of pregnancy, and the last nearly 3 years have been one long roller coaster ride. NICU, doctors, machines, illness, therapy…. it doesn’t end. They are almost 3 years old and although they are doing wonderful for 28 weekers, we are still dealing with mini-crises all the time. And now I’m pregnant again – and very, very scared. I’m being monitored by my high-risk doctor pretty frequently, but still, every time I feel something, every time I do anything that I know I shouldn’t (how do you take care of 3 little ones without lifting things and climbing the stairs a hundred times a day??), I get terrified. Will I end up on bedrest again? Will I have any of the complications I had last time? Only time will tell.
    Thanks for writing about that voice that I should be listening to – that calm and quiet voice. And for reminding me to stay calm. Getting stressed out is certainly not helping me… Like I said, this was the perfect time to find this article. Thanks, Parijat!

    • Hi Lee,

      Thank you for sharing and I’m so glad you found this article at the perfect time and that it was helpful for you! You’ve been through so much, it’s completely understandable that you would be feeling stress during this pregnancy! If you’d like more resources on how to manage your stress during your pregnancy, feel free to head over to my website (parijatdeshpande.com)! Take good care of yourself and wishing you a long, healthy pregnancy this time around!

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