Mamas on Bedrest: Worry Busting

January 14th, 2013

I’m tired.

I spent a large part of the weekend worrying about some pending bills, and by the time I sat down to my desk today to address them, the issues had resolved themselves! I had worried for nothing and am now sleep deprived as well. Lesson learned? I’d love to telly you yes, but I have yet to truly kick the “worry habit”.

Worry is such a precarious thing. On the one hand, we all intellectually know that worrying serves no benefit. As the saying goes, “What can you really change by worrying?” I worried all weekend and on Monday morning, the situation had not initially changed. My worrying had had not effect. When things did resolve, all my worrying and not sleeping had been for naught. I tried not to worry, but I have to say, I have a very vivid imagination and I had all sorts of outlandish outcomes for my situation from the mundane to “the boogie man” coming to get me ran through my head. When it really came down to it, I was afraid of the unknown and worried that whatever happened, I wouldn’t be able to handle it.

I imagine that many of you mamas are in a similar situation. I worried with both of my pregnancies as I became pregnant with each of my children following a miscarriage. When I was pregnant with my daughter, my first, I would move around holding my stomach in my hands-as if I could somehow prevent losing the pregnancy in that way. I spent a lot of frantic nights worrying about her and in the end, she was born prematurely at 36 weeks, 6 days.  I cannot say that if I had not worried she would have stayed in longer. No one can say that for sure. But I did go into labor with her and given the information from my previous blog post, I have often wondered if my worry did in fact cause my cervix to ripen, for labor to begin and for her to be born early. But now with a healthy, sassy 10 year old I don’t think it really matters.

But I want to put this out there to you all as a potential worry buster. As I was stressing myself out this weekend and my mind was cooking up all kinds of crazy scenarios, the thing that calmed me down the most is when I confronted my worry head on. When I came into my office this morning, I sat down, looked at my bills, looked at my finances, looked at a couple of other responsibilities and decided to get clarity. I checked my balances on my bank accounts and my bills. I made a couple of calls and found out that I actually had more time than I thought with a couple of items. With that, I only had 1-2 things requiring immediate attention. I then sat down and contemplated what could be moved/pushed back/ borrowed from/etc…And I found that I did in fact have some funds that I could tap in the event of an emergency. With that realization, I felt much better and proceeded to do a few other tasks on my to do list. When I returned to my computer later, funds that I have been awaiting had been deposited in to my account. Now nothing will be late and I don’t have to do the “financial shuffle”.  I worried in vain.

Now you may be saying, “But my baby’s life is at stake.” I hear you. I’ve been there. But worrying won’t help your baby and may quite possibly harm him or her. What I learned from my own most recent experience is that if you can anticipate the outcomes, you can make concrete plans which often alleviate worry. So for example, if you are worried about preterm labor, ask your health care provider at your next office visit what would be the possible outcomes if my baby were to be born today? The information may be hard to take, especially if you are in the 20-26 week range. But knowledge is power and you can at least mentally prepare in the event of preterm labor; pack your hospital bag, plan how you’ll reach your partner, how you’ll get to the hospital, who will take care of your older children, etc… So that you don’t have to ask at each office visit, you can check out websites like WhatToExpect.com and BabyCenter.com. Each of these sites provide week by week information about fetal growth and development.

Some mamas are worried about their finances (boy can I relate!) being on bed rest. If that is the case, sit down with your partner, with your check book, your accounts and see exactly where you are financially. If you anticipate being short for payments, call the providers of services. They will likely work with you if you have an account in good standing. I have found that most providers would much rather have some payment than no payment!

If you are worried about childcare if you are admitted to the hospital (and not already there), seek and secure childcare now. See what help you can get from family and friends, and then supplement as necessary from fee for service sitters.

I think you get the picture. My mother used to tell me that worry is imagination misplaced. I think that there is a lot of truth in that statement. When I was able to ground my fears in reality, I was able to release the fear. And I am not oblivious to the fact that there are some instances where worry is somewhat justified. As you are looking at your situation and your options, there may not be good options. While I won’t say go ahead and worry, I will say that these are the situations about which to put your energy. And always remember, we are here to help with our coaching program for mamas needing assistance or if you need a quick review, you can have a one time 30 minute Complimentary Bedrest Breakthrough Session. Learn about both on our website or send an e-mail to info@mamasonbedrest.com. I also encourage you to use our Facebook Page (for non private items) as the mamas there have come up with some great tips and referrals. And if you still find yourself worrying and anxiety ridden, do discuss your feelings and concerns with your health care provider. You may need to consider consulting with at therpist. Perinatal depression is real and many women suffer in silence. This is extremely detrimental to both mamas and babies! Help is out there, please seek it! Again, if you are unsure, ask your health care provider for assistance.

I hope this helps! Here’ s to not worrying!!

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