How I Really Feel Being Pregnant.

I’ll be honest I’ve been struggling to put this post into words. Feeling confident within myself before getting pregnant was difficult. Now that I am pregnant, I feel as though my body confidence changes quite drastically day to day.

On Friday it was Valentines Day, Josh made plans for us to have a three course dinner at a local restaurant that I’ve really wanted to go to for a while. I got dressed up, put some makeup on and I was amazed at just how confident that made me feel.

I feel like I’ve waited for the best part of a month for this “pregnancy glow” and energy that everyone talks about. I definitely feel as though I have more energy than I did during the first trimester though. (Thank goodness for that!)

I’ve been feeling as though I’m not as happy as I should be during this pregnancy. I feel guilty for not enjoying it as much as I think I should be. In my mind I should be ecstatic about the new chapter ahead. I should love my body unconditionally for the incredible thing that it’s doing. I’ve been feeling really overwhelmed about the prospect of becoming a mum. It’s a scary concept! I’m learning to accept these feelings of uncertainty as normal. I’m learning to understand that it is a scary but exciting new chapter of my life. I’m currently waiting on therapy to help with these thoughts.

If you’ve followed me for a while or you know me personally, you’ll know that I’ve struggled with my mental health for a large majority of my life. Before getting pregnant I decided that I would stop taking the anti-depressants that I had been taking for about 2 and a half years. I worked alongside my doctor for 6 months to do this safely. I’m so proud of myself for getting to a place where I didn’t need them anymore. I’ve had a lot of therapy in the past, and that really helped me too.

Getting pregnant happened very quickly for us which I feel so blessed about. During the first trimester my emotions were like a rollercoaster. Although I have to admit that my hormones have calmed down a bit I have been having days (mostly moments) where I just cry or I get so overwhelmed. I’m told by my midwife that it’s normal?

I feel as though people don’t talk much about how pregnancy affects their mental health as they’re afraid of being judged or that people will think they won’t be able to cope when the baby gets here. For me, although I do share those fears too. I’m really looking forward to baby’s arrival and I’m so excited to become a mum. There are however moments that are overshadowed by my mental health, and the doubts and fears that I have in my mind. Because I’ve struggled with my mental health in the past, those fears and doubts are somewhat exaggerated and overwhelming to deal with. But I think that it’s vital to establish that having mental health problems does no way determine the type of person or parent you will become.

I struggle with my mental health and whilst being pregnant I’m almost vulnerable to having more intense feelings about how I’m coping, but thats okay. It’s so important to reach out and ask for help. It doesn’t make you a bad person and it certainly doesn’t make you a bad mum.

I hope to talk more about my mental health during this pregnancy and I would encourage others to do so too. ❤

Thank you for reading,

Hannah x

We’re Halfway There.

We are officially halfway through now. These first 20 weeks have flown by and everyday that goes by makes me more and more excited to meet our little one. ❤

We have been making lots of preparations for baby’s arrival so I will definitely be uploading a nursery tour.

The first trimester was pretty tough for me emotionally and physically. I was one of the lucky ones and was never physically sick but the nausea was unbearable at times, especially when at work. I suffered mostly with fatigue, mood swings and food aversions. Fatigue meant that when I wasn’t at work, I was mostly likely at home and in bed. Getting through my shifts at work were a struggle I tell you that! I’ve always struggled with mood swings but the ones I experienced in the first 14 weeks were exhausting for both myself and my partner. (Bless him, he’s put up with a lot so far)

  • Food aversions were mostly any hot food. I could only eat very little and often and it had to be cold savoury foods. I would often cook my dinner and wait for it to be cold before eating. Or I would live on plain breadsticks and plain crackers.
  • Food cravings: I didn’t have any weird or strange cravings like sponges or dirt. I did however start to crave cheese, (which is odd because I don’t like cheese) chocolate milk, cereal and watermelon. I think thats about it…

I’m feeling regular movements from baby and I just can’t wait for the day that Josh can feel them too. Going to work has proven to be a bit difficult, I’m trying to take it one day at a time though. Being on my feet all day means I’ve been experiencing some cramping and I’m left feeling utterly exhausted by the end of the shift. My midwife keeps reminding me to take it easy and have plenty of sit downs.

Yoga has helped dramatically with my lower back pain so I will definitely be keeping that up! I used to attend a yoga class at my local gym, I’m thinking about going back and attending again very soon. I’ve also been reading a lot about hypnobirthing, it really intrigues me so I will be giving that a go too.

I’m trying to treasure all of the moments that I have for myself because when little one comes along all of my time and energy will be going into looking after them. So for now, lots of lazy evenings, long bath times and casually reading my favourite books.

Thats it for now! I will be sharing my pregnancy essentials in my next post so keep your eyes out for that!

Hope you’re all doing well.

Hannah x

I’m Pregnant

It’s been such a long time since I’ve written a post on here, I’ve really missed it! A lot has happened:
– I’ve changed jobs, (yes, again!)
– Josh and I decided that we would try for a baby.
– Josh and I found out we were pregnant in October.
– In November we moved out of our small 1 bedroom apartment to a beautiful house.
– We spent Christmas in our new home.

I’ve decided that I want to re-start blogging again. I’m kinda anxious about getting back into it but I’m sure I will feel right at home in no time.

So tell me, what type of content would you like to see from me?

Be sure to follow me over on Instagram too:
https://www.instagram.com/paint_me_a_smile_/

Talk soon,
Hannah x

It’s Been Quite A While.

Well hello there, it’s been such a long time since I’ve uploaded onto this blog. There are many reasons why I haven’t, the main one being, life has just kinda been a bit crazy!

A few weeks ago I started a new job and I’m loving it so far! The staff are so lovely and they really have made me feel part of the team.

I can’t believe that it’s almost September! Where is this year going?

I had a lot of fears and anxiety about uploading on here again. After giving it much thought I just figured that I didn’t really have anything to loose. Besides, I really miss my rambling thoughts!

Tomorrow marks a pretty big day for me. It’s the day that I’ve been waiting for for a good 2 and a half years, maybe a little longer than that now that I think about it. It’s the last day that I will spend on anti-depressants. I will be 100% medication free! I cannot believe how much my life has changed. Of course I still have bad days, and I still find myself rattled with anxiety. But for the most part, life is great! It’s been an uphill battle but I wouldn’t change it for the world.

I’ve started going to the gym more too. It’s doing wonders for my self-confidence! I’m also doing tons of reading. I’m currently reading Becoming by Michelle Obama, she’s such an inspiration! OH and also, I don’t know how I could possibly forget this! My sister has moved down to Kent. How amazing is that? I’ve been loving spending more and more time with her.

So that kind of sums up what I’ve been up to.

What have you guys been up to? I would love to hear all about it.

-Hannah x

Update | Canterbury | Holiday Haul

# We All Have A Story.

After seeing this hashtag going around on Twitter this morning I just knew that I had to get involved. Created by The Blurt Foundation. I’m all about things like this, it’s such a fantastic way to get people talking about mental health. Raising awareness about mental health needs to be taken more seriously than it ever has done before. It’s important that people feel that they can reach out without feeling pressured or embarrassed.

I came across Me and My Mental Health Matter’s Blog and loved the questions they used so I decided that I would answer the same questions on here.

When did you first notice your condition?

I think I was first aware of my condition from the age of 13. I didn’t fully understand or know exactly what it was. I just knew that I didn’t feel ‘right’. I didn’t fit in, but not in a ‘normal’ typical teenage not fitting in way, as many people around me felt thats the phase I was going through. I knew something was wrong and that I didn’t feel right.

It wasn’t till the age of 18 that my doctors finally gave me the ‘depression and anxiety’ label.

When did you first get help for your condition? 

I first saw a school councillor at the age of 15. She helped me with stress management. That was the first time I was introduced to breathing techniques and meditation.

I saw three different therapists throughout my time at University. As well as a crisis team and sought help from the A&E department.

Do you take medication?

Yes. Over the past 6 years I’ve taken it on and off. At the moment I take two different dosages of Venlafaxine. It’s the only one I’ve been on that’s worked. Before Venlafaxine, no medication was working so my doctor referred me to a psychiatrist and they doubled my dose. I’ve been on this dose for the past year and 8 months. I will probably be on them for the rest of my life, but to be honest, if they help me live my life then I am okay with that.

What do you miss out on because of your condition?

In short, yes I do miss out on some things. But, as I get older I realise that my life is what I make it. Travel makes me anxious at times, but I take small journeys to challenge myself.

Would you get rid of your condition if you could?

No. I don’t think I would. It would have made my life a hell of a lot easier, but I wouldn’t have the acceptance and compassion for life that I have now. Yes there are many situations that make me anxious. There are days I feel like I can’t face the world. There are days where I feel like I can’t ‘do life’ anymore. But, I keep fighting. I keep living each day as it comes because I might feel depressed and hopeless one day but the next day I might wake up and be happy.

We All Have A Story. It’s your story and everyones is different. Keep fighting and pushing for what you want in life.

Life is so worth it.

Much love,
Hannah x

Monday Must Have.

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Good morning, I hope that you all had a great weekend!

Today I wanted to share with you a hand soap that I picked up from the poundshop last week.

Love Parma violet sweets? Then this is the hand-wash for you! I can’t get enough of it.

What is your favourite scent of hand-wash?

Much love,

Hannah x

P.S.  I still have some bubblegum flavoured hand-wash in the cupboard.

Lets Talk: The Mental Health Community.

Hello and welcome.

Today I wanted to share with you a new video that I’ve uploaded talking about the online mental health community.

Much love,

Hannah x

Hello August.

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Hello again, it’s Hannah here.

Today I wanted to share my August goals with you guys!

  1. Progress with doing yoga for stress management and flexibility.
  2. Upload more consistently on my blog and Instagram.
  3. Cut back on caffeine.
  4. Read two books.
  5. Treat myself more kindly.

What goals are you setting yourself this month?

Much love,

Hannah x

 

I’ve Come So Far.

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It has taken me years to be brave enough to walk around comfortably in a t-shirt.
I walked around Calais last weekend in shorts and a t-shirt.

It was such an achievement for me! 👍🏻💛

⭐️ Your mental health does not define you.

⭐️ Your scars do not define you.

⭐️ Your struggles are a sign of your inner strength.

Keep being you and you will go far. Work on accepting who you are and where you want to go. Make no apologies for who you are and just do your best!

Much love,

Hannah x