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My Preconception

We are seldom able to prepare ourselves for the major events in our lives. The things that truly change us are often unexpected and as a result, we are not prepared for the major alterations these kinds of ‘surprises’ can bring. Pregnancy is one of these life-altering events and if you have the luxury, taking advantage of the preconception period can make a major difference in the way pregnancy affects your life and most importantly, the health of your future child.

Whether you are actively trying to conceive or not, women should be aware of the importance of making healthy lifestyle choices throughout their childbearing years. Preparing your body for pregnancy is not as daunting as it sounds as the process is the same as incorporating healthy habits in your every day life. Daily exercise, a balanced diet and strategies for stress management are all common sense ways to stay healthy whether you are trying to conceive or not. Incorporating these behaviors into your lifestyle and even making them a daily priority is the best way to begin your pregnancy journey.

Taking the time to consider the financial, practical and emotional preparations for becoming parents is not as easy. The image of a glowing newborn and the happiness that you and your partner will experience is certainly based in fact, but ask any seasoned parent and they will tell you the reality of starting a family can be considerably more stressful. After modifying any bad habits you may have such as smoking, drug use or drinking, sitting down with your partner and developing a realistic ‘baby plan’ is crucial. There may be no way to prepare yourself for the incredible change having a baby will bring to all aspects of your life, but even being aware of this fact will make a difference in the first chaotic years of parenthood.

You may also want to consider the possibility that you could have some difficulty conceiving. When planning to start a family, many couples take for granted that they will be able to become pregnant easily. The reality is that one in four couples will experience some degree of infertility. Establishing open communication between you and your partner during this preconception period will help with any fertility struggles you may experience. Develop an awareness of your options should you find yourselves unable to conceive and be comforted knowing that very little stands in the way of starting a family whether you actually give birth or adopt.

The moment your pregnancy is confirmed great changes begin. Your lives, time and energy become something that will forever be shared and all the responsibilities you have take on a new importance. Taking advantage of your preconception period by planning for these alterations will benefit you and your child. Think of it as building a nest for your new family, padding it with your physical, emotional and practical preparations.


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