Ryan Shepard
About Author
November 29, 2022
 in 
Mom Life

Here Is How I'm Mentally & Physically Preparing For Another Baby

I can't even believe I'm writing this honestly. After welcoming Nola into our lives, I truly couldn't picture having another baby for a long time. For one, I was and remain, deeply in love and lowkey obsessed with my Nolie. But truthfully, the majority of the reason I literally shuddered at the thought of getting pregnant again was because adjusting to motherhood was incredibly hard for me.

Of course I loved my baby, but becoming a mother, experiencing a shift in my identity and encountering changes in my marriage was a lot. Frankly I barely made it out of that intact. But over the course of almost two years (I cannot believe Nola will be 2 in February), I've begun to sing a different tune. My marriage is feeling stronger than ever, my kiddo is getting less baby like and needy every day and I truly want her to have what I had as a child: siblings I was and remain very close to.

That means I'm feeling mentally and physically well enough to begin to entertain the idea of getting pregnant again, gahhhh! I've started implementing some practices, supplements, and other things into my life that I believe will help support my body and my brain in order to have an incredible pregnancy. I'm sharing just in case you find yourself in the same space. I obviously can't promise this will get you pregnant, but these are things that I believe helped get me pregnant with Nola and additionally, things I wish I had tried and used during my first pregnancy.

+Taking Prenatals

During my first pregnancy, I took Ritual's prenatals and I really liked them. I only had to take 2/day and they put flavored tabs in the bottles which gave my vitamins either a lemon or mint taste. But, this pregnancy I wanted a different approach so I'm currently taking Perelel's Conception Support Pack. I went with Perelel because I loved the fact that their vitamin packs have been developed by a panel of OB/GYN's and fetal health experts. I also appreciate that they have different pill packs geared towards different stages of the motherhood journey. For example, I'm currently taking their conception support pack because I'm trying to get pregnant. They also have packs for each trimester and even for recovering after birth. They even have a vitamins for folks who are going through the IVF journey.

I take my pills every evening because that's what works for me, but they can be taken any time of day.

+A Wellness Practice

Before I found out I was pregnant with Nola, I didn't even consider what a wellness practice would look like to me. The need for one became very clear postpartum when I was struggling. Since then, I try to commit to meditating every morning and evening before bedtime. I use Aura, a wellness app geared towards mental health. In the mornings, I try to do a 3-5 minute guided gratitude meditation before Nola wakes up and our day gets started. At night, I usually listen to a sleep meditation recording to drift off. I don't think I've ever actually gotten through a full night time recording without falling asleep. The app allows you to filter through what you need so that it can be most impactful. I love this app and have recommended it to all of my friends.

+My Fitness Journey

This is something I've committed myself to these past 2-3 months. Currently I take Solidcore twice a week times and hope to continue to do so during my pregnancy, as long as my doctor says it's safe. I tried to do yoga but it was just too slow for me and solidcore is more my speed with the trendy workout studios, great playlists and challenging instructors. I'm starting to feel so much stronger in my body which will be super helpful when I'm carrying another human.

+Therapy

For me, therapy is essential. I found my therapist in early 2019 just before Shep and I got married and I adore her. We have weekly sessions where she pushes me to examine unhelpful thought processes and just in general keeps my perspective in tact. My first pregnancy was really hard on me mentally. We were deep in the midst of the pandemic, I was cut off from my family and my daily scrolls through social media had me convinced that either I would die giving birth to Nola or something horrific would happen to her while she was growing in my belly.

It was a really dark time and thankfully I was able to get back on antidepressants which took some of the pressure off. This time around, I know what to look for and already have systems in place (like therapy) to make sure I'm feeling my best leading up to and during my next pregnancy.

+Diet & Alcohol

Y'all know I love a good drink and I'm not planning on stopping until I find out I'm expecting. That being said, I am taking it a little easier on the booze. No more 2 cocktails at the end of the night (every single night) but I'm also not abstaining from drinking completely. I love wine and I'm basically cutting back pretty significantly on hard alcohol but allowing myself a glass or two of wine when I want it.

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