With a global pandemic and contested election going on, it can be easy to get caught up in the fear and anxiety it creates. Finding your footing to feel stable and peaceful can be challenging right now. Add to that the darkness of winter (it gets really dark and gray outside here in Oregon) and the stress of the holidays, and it can feel even more difficult.
Pregnant. Excited? Nervous? Overwhelmed?
So many emotions are experienced when you see those two little lines on that pregnancy test. You spent nine months preparing to welcome this little baby into your life, trying to think of everything you might need. So why do you feel so down? How can you feel thankful and blessed while also feeling hopeless? While these feelings are very common postpartum, 2020 has heightened those feelings for many new parents.
COVID Has Changed Pregnancy and Postpartum for Parents Everywhere
This year has made the experience of pregnancy, delivery, and postpartum times look very different. For many moms this year, isolation and loneliness have been common feelings with attending doctor’s appointments alone, skipping baby showers or having virtual or small baby showers, canceling gender reveal parties or having them virtually, not being allowed visitors in the hospital, and potentially not having visitors over to meet your baby at home. Not having people bring you meals or hold your baby while you sleep or not being able to introduce your baby to parents or loved ones has increased new mom’s levels of exhaustion and made many unsure of how to safely ask for help from others. If you feel stuck between trying to advocate for your mental, physical, and emotional needs while trying to make the best decisions for your family with COVID-19, you are not alone.
Holidays, New Year, New Unknowns
The holidays can function as a magnifying glass for the struggles and pain we feel throughout the year. With holidays approaching, you may feel so blessed with your new baby while also feeling a loss for what you had hoped and dreamed for this holiday season. The need to overcompensate may be present to make up for the typical “holiday magic” or maybe you have no desire to celebrate because this year just doesn’t feel right. Where are you are on that spectrum?
How can you cope with these changes?
One helpful tool is to come up with statements that you can say to yourself that acknowledge your feelings and frustrations while also allowing you to accept the reality of current circumstances. This could look like, “I accept the moment for how it is” or “Although my emotions are uncomfortable, I will get through it”. By acknowledging and accepting your pain and current circumstances, these statements, called radical acceptance, allow you to see that fighting your pain is only making it worse.
Mindfulness matters. Check-in and get real with yourself.
This year, I think that being mindful of your current mental and emotional state is vital. If you are so tired from sleep deprivation and the constant state of being needed by your baby or other kids, then maybe this is the year to do less and just be. If you need to look forward to something or want to try a new tradition, then take an easy, simple step in that direction. This holiday season; give yourself the gift of grace. While 2020 brought you a beautiful blessing in your child; you have also grieved normalcy and connection. Take care of yourself and reach out for help when overwhelmed.
CONSIDER ONLINE THERAPY IN OREGON
Our Clackamas and Hillsboro based counselors are excited to work with you, wherever you are in Oregon. Anxiety, stress, trauma, depression, and conflict do not have to rule your life. We can help you get back on track in a way that aligns with your faith and values. When you are ready to start online Christian counseling in Oregon, follow these simple steps:
- Learn about our therapy team in Hillsboro and our caring counselors in Clackamas
- Schedule an appointment with your preferred therapist, or contact us with questions
- Begin feeling more calm, confident, and peaceful, from the comfort of your home.
OTHER MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES AT LIFE DISCOVERY COUNSELING IN OREGON
No matter what you want to cover in online therapy, we know that you may have more concerns to talk about. Or, you might know someone else who does. If you are in Clackamas, Happy Valley, Damascus, or Hillsboro, we can help you in person at one of our comfortable therapy clinics. Christian counseling is the cornerstone of our approach to therapy. Not only do we see adults, but children in counseling too. We also work with depression treatment, anxiety therapy, trauma therapy and PTSD treatment, relationship issues, marriage problems, and postpartum counseling. No matter where you are in the state, we can provide the support you need. Once you’re ready to start, we’re ready to meet you. Let’s connect!
About Megan, the Author
Megan Coggins is a Licensed Professional Counselor and writes about anxiety, trauma, postpartum and pregnancy issues, and relationships. She is a skilled and caring Christian therapist in Oregon.