Ahhh…The Joys of Pregnancy
You are in the midst of one of the most amazing, overwhelming and fragile times of your life, constantly thinking of the little life growing inside you. Everything is in constant change. You’re busy getting the baby’s bedroom ready for occupancy, researching baby gear and slowly purchasing the enormous number of essential items required for one tiny little bundle. On top of all that, your belly is constantly growing, your emotions are going haywire, you’re feeling anxious about what’s happening and probably feeling a lot of anxiety of not being prepared when the baby arrives…and those haunting thoughts going through your mind…what if he arrives early and you’re not ready! Does this sound familiar?
During your first trimester, the sudden flood of the hormone Progesterone makes you crave naps. This hormone helps regulate your reproductive cycle and also makes you feel tired and run down.
Are you dreaming more? Are your dreams more vivid than normal? Are your dreams strange and peculiar?
Blame it on the hormones
Hormones…they affect your emotions and anxiety. Hormones also impact the way your brain processes information. HCG, the pregnancy hormone, or “Human Chorionic Gonadotropin” (HCG for short) is produced during pregnancy from cells formed in the placenta.
- Intense or more anxiety driven dreams
- More vivid dreams, ones that you can recall easily
- Erotic dreams
- More frequent dreams and possibly even
Another cause for your dreams is interrupted sleep. As your pregnancy progresses, normal sleep patterns are disrupted due to frequently waking up to pee or maybe just being uncomfortable. This waking affects your REM sleep. REM, rapid eye movement, sleep is when you dream and the more REM is disrupted – the more frequent you dream.
Every person dreams 1 1/2 – 2+ hours each night…everyone. But, rarely can we recall much of what we dream. Pregnant women, however, can recall their dreams more frequently and in greater detail.
Several studies have been done on the dreams of pregnant women and they’ve even been broken down into themes or types.
For example, one study done on dreams during the 2nd trimester suggests, if you dream about your baby as either a boy or girl: “A dream experience like this usually means that the pregnant mother is curious about what her child will look like, whether the baby will be a boy or girl and what features the baby will inherit from her and from the father. These are usually positive dreams although sometimes a mother will dream about her baby inheriting an undesirable characteristic.”
Psychologist and dream expert, Patricia Garfield, author of “Women’s Bodies, Women’s Dreams” says pregnant women see their babies in about 15% of their dreams while other researchers have reported an even greater number of vivid baby dreams during the 3rd trimester. Some can see their baby’s face in their dreams and the degree of accuracy proves to be uncanny.
Stress is another side effect during pregnancy for both the new mom AND the new dad. You both may have concerns about finances, how a baby will affect your jobs, the cost of day care and the added expense of raising a child.
No wonder you’re having dreams!
What can you do?
If you have trouble sleeping at night…
- Add a little exercise to your daily routine. It boosts not only physical but mental health. Take walks outdoors when the weather is nice, but don’t start any exercise routine that your body wasn’t used to before you became pregnant.
- Eating before bed may trigger a nightmare.
- Try some breathing exercises and meditation before turning in. This calms and clears thoughts in your mind and helps to put your brain to rest, allowing you to relax and drift off to sleep.
- You really need 8-9 hours of sleep every day. If you don’t, you can get stressed out which is a cause of nightmares.
⇒Did you know… Sleeping on your left side improves the flow of blood and nutrients to your baby.
According to CNNMoney and the USDA, the cost of raising a child through age 17 is over $233,000 and this does not cover the cost of college. This figure was calculated for a child born in 2015, so tack on a few more dollars to bring that figure up to date. Tack on another $13,000 if your kid won’t graduate high school until age 18. And… if you have an athletic child, there could be major expenses involved with his/her sport of choice, especially if travel is involved for tournaments, private lessons, equipment, etc. etc. Oh, and don’t forget the clothes!
So…according to these guys, you can expect to spend $12,350 – $14,000 per year, on average, to raise your child. Of course, a certain percentage of this figure includes housing, etc. which is already covered in your annual budget. Personally, I think this figure is quite low, particularly if you take into account the cost of day care and possibly private school through high school.
The “sticker shock” of having a baby and raising a child is just that…a shock. But it’s all good and worth every
penny dollar along the way…if you do it right. You’ll get through it and down the road when your little one is grown and expecting her own baby…chances are you’ll close your eyes, look back over her growing up years and wish you could turn back the clock and do it all over again. Trust me.
And that is what I wish for you,
I welcome your thoughts and comments below and would love to hear about your craziest pregnancy dreams so we can all chuckle together. Please like and share with your friends.