I feel a sort of slow panic rising in my chest. I’m 37 weeks pregnant—that’s considered “term.”
The baby could come any day now.
I’m torn. Obviously I’m excited to meet my child, but I’m worried about what’s coming. A tiny little human completely dependent upon its mummy and daddy to care for it. What if we get it all wrong? What if we have no idea what we’re doing?
I’ve been waiting months for this day to arrive, but what if it’s nothing like I envisaged?
I snapped at the dog today for treading mud through the house—what if I can’t control my emotions with a crying baby and I turn into a big crying mess myself?
What if the baby is crying and I don’t know what to do?
What if I’m crying and I don’t know what to do?
What if? What if? What if?
I’m taking it easy these last few of weeks and maybe it’s the lack of distraction that’s bringing this worry to the surface. That’s the way of the human mind, isn’t it? We keep ourselves so busy and distracted that when we’re really faced with what’s racing through our heads it can be a little shocking. And then we just want it to go away—go away without having to deal with what’s there.
This can be really confronting for people on the yoga mat. In a 90 minute class there’s a lot of time to become aware of the chatter in your mind. You might be shocked to recognize just how poorly you talk to yourself, or how judgemental you are of the people around you. Maybe you suddenly realize how much you worry about things that are outside of your control, or just how much that comment your boss made three weeks ago is still playing on your mind.
Of course when we slow down off the yoga mat the result can be the same. Suddenly we have some space to see our thoughts and they’re not always what we’d like. I know I’m a little disappointed to find fear and anxiety there at the moment, when what I’d really like to feel is excitement. Mind you, with the charge of hormones racing through my system, it’s quite possible that’s how I’ll feel tomorrow or even in five minutes!
So, what should I do? Well, first I’ll tell you what I did do.
I put on a load of washing, did a bit of internet surfing and contemplated more housework. I tried to keep myself busy. Then I realized that what I was doing wasn’t going to help. I need to face up to what I’m feeling, not bury it. It’s not wrong to feel this way, but I was making it wrong by trying to escape it.
Now I’m sitting with it. It’s not particularly comfortable, but I know that it will pass. By recognizing what’s there I can face it; if I turn my back on it, it’s likely to creep up on me like a masked villain. I’ve faced the feelings and even though they’re still there, they don’t feel quite so powerful any more.
Editor: Brianna Bemel