Yoga for 2: Prenatal and Postnatal Artwork
Season 3 - Episode 2

Honoring the Changes

10 min - Talk
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Maria shares a talk about her experience with pregnancy thus far—her struggles, lessons she has learned, how her yoga practice has adapted, and how she has ultimately has allowed herself to ride the waves of change.
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Feb 14, 2017
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(waves crashing) Thank you for joining me today. Today is a talk and I'm mainly gonna be talking just about the changes and honoring the changes throughout pregnancy and sharing a bit of my story and my journey of how, I've dealt with some of them, and where I've had challenges and et cetera. So I'm at 26 weeks, a little bit beyond 26 weeks, but basically 26 weeks, so I'm just about to start my third trimester. And my beginning of pregnancy, before pregnancy actually, I had a pretty consistent or stronger practice, and once I got pregnant, I, you know, I had heard all these stories about a stronger woman who I respected, looked up to, who had, done their practices throughout pregnancy, and I always thought that I would be one of them, like I would continue to go, and just do my practice, and then I got pregnant, (laughing) and my first two months, like up until eight weeks, I guess I felt, I felt okay except I was really tired, but I didn't have any morning sickness, and so I was thinking oh I must be one of the lucky ones who's not gonna sick. And then eight weeks hit, and it was just over. (laughing) I was nauseous, vomiting, I had a horrible taste in my mouth that would not go away, made it difficult to even drink water because the water tasted metallic, and I was just exhausted and, definitely didn't have food cravings, so everything I had heard about how fun it was to eat during pregnancy, I was not looking forward to eating at all, so I just, I obviously didn't go my mat very much.

I think I made it to my mat maybe, five, six times from eight weeks until, even before that really, from like four or six weeks until, until I was at about 18 weeks. And so during that time I was struggling a lot with feeling guilty. I actually felt a lot of guilt, I felt disappointed in myself that I couldn't maintain my practice, and even beyond that I also felt a bit like is this something that I should be working through, like should I not be giving into how I'm feeling right now, and just pushing forward with my will, and doing the practices, or is it something that I should be honoring. And it's tricky because sometimes when you push forward, and you work through things, those bad feelings do go away, and you shift your attention, and you shift your focus. And so a few times I tried to get on my mat, and I tried to take that approach but, what happened was I would get off my mat, and I would just be completely depleted for the rest of the day, and I couldn't, I had a really hard time sticking to my other commitments, with work or family, home life and, so I really needed to make a choice of what was the Yoga here.

It highlighted for me what was the real Yoga here, is it being so stuck on having to follow the system, and stay on this path, (chuckling) or was it being more flexible and allowing myself that, room to change and grow and let this being come in to my life, and these new changes set. And so I obviously chose that later path, I chose to take a break from my practice and really only go to my mat when I honestly felt inspired. Like I'm ready, I woke up, I slept well throughout the night, and I'm ready to go to my mat and move. And when I did move of course, I moved at a much different pace than I had ever before, because even though at that point I really wasn't showing, I, you have this awareness that there's something happening, in your uterus. (laughing) You can feel that there's a baby growing, I had some bloating et cetera, and it didn't really feel appropriate to be muscling through or engaging too much in that area. And so I, also found that there was a lot of benefit in me sleeping.

I was having a hard time sleeping throughout the night, so I would let myself sleep until I woke up in the morning, 'cause sometimes I'd be up for three or four hours during the middle of the night, and a lot of times that can just happen because of the hormone fluctuations, and I also found incredible value in just taking long walks, like I would walk my dog, and take her for three to five mile long walks, which felt great, and I, I would do the elliptical at a gym, which is something new for me, and I actually think that my tendency is to be very flexible and a little hypermobile, and I think that the walking and the elliptical, varying it up for me was really helpful because it helped stabilize some of my joints, so I wasn't going into my full range of motion and flexibility. And so we really have to give ourselves permission and allow ourselves to kinda ride the waves of changes, during this process and, not really be attached to who we were before, because not only are we someone different, every second, every minute, every day, but now it's not only our energy, and it's not only about what we need, but it's also about what this growing baby needs and furthermore what are lives need to look like in order to support this new change. And then we also wanna, for me it was really important to kinda look at where I was being hard on myself, and judging my myself, and not loving myself, and my truth, and if I was doing that to myself, how else do I express that out in the world for other people where my heart on, my husband or would I could I be potentially hard on my child? And I don't want to create that, so I had to look at how I could be gentler with myself, and my husband amidst all the hormone fluctuations, that was a little tricky, (laughing) and so that I can really come from a place of love, because for me that's the one gift that I wanna give to my child unconditionally. It's to me the one contract that I have, is to love her throughout whatever stages she's going through, ups and downs and whatever that looks like at any point of time.

And there was a day that I went to actually a Prenatal Yoga class, and it was really really touching for me. It was a room full of women, the teacher was beautiful and, just being in that supportive environment of not only the women, but the women with child, (laughing) and the women in similar places as I am. I didn't realize it would, it would touch me the way that it did, and I actually was crying out of nowhere for no reason. Some of it I can blame on hormones but the other part was just really that it was like, they were tears of joy, love and gratitude. I felt such a sense of gratitude for where I live, when I live, and who I'm surrounded by, and the amount of support, that we have today as women, if we're looking for it, and if it's what we want, with resources online and journals, and videos and classes, we can really connect with other women who are in a similar place, and it was really comforting for me to be in a room of other moms, who also had Yoga practices.

Then another thing that just strikes me as, the fear that come up during this process too. Fear of the unknown, fear of the changes, (chuckling) fear what life will look like on the other side, fear of finances. There's all kinds of things to be afraid of, and our culture almost can support that, it almost wants us to feel afraid, and there will people who will even be talking to me from a place of fear, and a lot of times what I've had to do is actually just shield myself, like of course acknowledge them, and thank them because in their heart of hearts, a lot of times they're coming from a place, where they wanna help, but that fear actually can leave an imprint on my subconscious and so I've had to just you know, listen, but not listen, not really take it in, because in the end of the day, it's all unknown and every single person will have a completely unique journey. Our practices will be different, our lives will be different, our experiences will be different, our bodies will change in all sorts of different ways, and comparing ourselves and our journey to anyone else's journey is, is really useless, (laughing) because they're, they're nowhere near similar. And so honoring our own unique experiences and enjoying it as much as we can and even the challenges, there's always a lesson in the challenge.

So, the more that we can open up, to whatever those challenges are showing us, the better the experience will be and the happier the journey. So, I hope that you all have beautiful journey's, and I thank you for listening to me, and maybe tuning into some of my episodes. I hope that they can help provide you with some of the support that I've felt really gracious and a lot of gratitude to have in my journey, so thank you and enjoy. Namaste.


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