When you were around seven years old, did you ever have one of those diaries which come with their locks and keys? You write everything that comes into your life even as simple as having ice cream while walking at the park. Feels good to reminisce.
Same goes with a pregnancy journal. You can write all of the joys and woes you feel during your pregnancy. It can be a way for you to keep your emotions in check or it can also be a great strategy so that there’s something you can use to look back on for the next years to come. Rebekah Bernard MD shares that, “One useful aspect of the journal was using it to remember the positive things in my life and practicing gratitude.”
For those who are still unsure of how to get started, what to write, and how to maintain a pregnancy journal, here are some of the basics of handling your pregnancy journal.
Make Your Own Notebook
To get an initial feel of writing your thoughts, start everything with a notebook that you are comfortable with handling. Get one and design it with something which will display who you are. If you are the serious type of person, you may opt to go with a simplistic design. However, if you are one of those women with an upbeat personality, just ready your colored pens and design all the way!
Decide On A Fixed Notebook Placement
It is essential to incorporate this habit into your daily life, and the easiest way to do so is to decide where to place your pregnancy journal. You may put it on a place you sit the most or you may also have it beside your bed. If you set it on a fixed spot and see it regularly, writing on it will most likely be part of your routine in no time!
Interview Other Mothers
If you are still hesitant in creating your pregnancy journal, try interviewing other pregnancy mothers on how they were able to handle their own. This time can also be a good chance for you to have a quick sharing of their pregnancy and birth experiences. This way, you will be more ready when your baby’s time comes.
All of the things you’ll learn from this community can be your first entry on your pregnancy journal! Your move.
Collect Pieces To Write
Some mothers might also feel a little overwhelmed when writing their first pregnancy journal entries. They don’t know what to write, and they don’t know how to organize their thoughts. If you are one of those women, make sure to read this carefully as we describe some areas you can write.
- Create A Letter To Your Child – Most mothers often forget to write about these kinds of things in their journals but most find this as the most intimate writing exercise of all. Close your eyes and think about the baby growing inside of you. Write a letter to this child. Make sure that you are honest from the beginning. You may opt to express your uncomfortableness of being pregnant, the happiness this setup gives you, or the fear that you feel in this situation.
- Write About Your Body – According to most pregnant mothers, their body insecurities get the worst out of them. “No matter how much they hate to admit it, most mothers-to-be struggle with their changing figure,” Ann Kearney-Cooke, Ph.D. points out. Because of that, it would be helpful for you to write about your body so that you won’t dwell much on the changes that are happening during pregnancy. Start by writing any your body part and state a reason why you love it. Be as specific as possible. Describe the exact profile – the shape, texture, color, and other things which will make you love your body more.
- Record Your Dreams – Some say that dreams reflect what you are feeling. Hence, make sure to write them down the moment who remember them. After recording everything, pay attention to the details of your dream and analyze everything. It might be a way for you to be able to explore your emotions further.
- Make It A Food Journal – A food journal can help keep track of your diet and the food you eat. This journal can be a way to control the cravings which are not healthy for your body.
- Share Your Fear – Pregnancy is a taboo especially for those first-time mothers. Aside from getting scared about the idea of childbirth, most women also face the fear of motherhood. Laura Riley, MD, who wrote the book Pregnancy: You and Your Baby, says that “It’s part excitement, part anticipation, and part pure fear of the unknown. But it’s also a time when some realistic concerns come to the forefront. And it can begin to feel a bit overwhelming, even for the calmest women.” Write down all the things that make you afraid – from your changing body, the giving birth proper, and parenting. Don’t worry. Writing them down does not mean that they will all happen. It will only make you foresee all of them, and this can also be a way for you to think about possible solutions when these challenges arise.
- Go By The Numbers – Aside from creating a pregnancy journal that is full of words and paragraphs, it might also be helpful if you go by the numbers. Record your baby’s growth, create a pie chart of what kinds of food make you nauseous the most, or keep track of the number of kicks your baby does per day. This record can give a little bit of refreshment from all the narratives that are happening inside your pregnancy journal.
- State Your Goals And Create A Timeline – Conduct a goal-setting session. Create a separate timeline showing when you’re targeting to reach these specific goals. These goals can range from your financial status to some areas of the growth of your baby. By creating this, you will be able to plan your future at least and have some inspiration in achieving it.
Create Tabs For Your Journal
Most mothers do not do this. But, it is a recommendation to at least split the journal up in regular intervals. Some opt to go with a monthly one. Bu, others prefer to do it per trimester to visualize the experience on a larger scale. Creating tabs in your pregnancy journal will enable you to reminisce specific experiences easier since you’ll know when to look.
Stick to a specific writing schedule. You may opt to write on it every after breakfast or before going to bed. Although it is to be planned alongside your schedule, keeping a pregnancy journal should not feel like a chore; instead, it should feel like the responsibility of a mother.
Print Your Pictures
It’s also a good idea for you to paste your first baby picture at the front of your journal. No, it’s not the picture during the moment you gave birth, instead, it’s the baby’s ultrasound picture during around its 6th week!
Aside from this, you may also include photographs of your body’s development pictures of memorable experience and people while you are pregnant. Remember, pictures speak a thousand words; hence, including photos inside your pregnancy journal can show a more realistic story of your experiences.
Embellish It With Physical Items
Instead of just focusing on pictures, why not add other significant items that you want to keep. Examples of this may include a tissue paper with scribbles of baby names, invitations to your baby shower, or even congratulation cards from family and friends. Putting these symbolic items to your pregnancy journal can be a great way to preserve this in the years to come.
There are various ways on how to manage your pregnancy journal. Others even prefer to have it digitally stored. In this way, they can put a little flair to it by adding audios and videos. Nevertheless, a pregnancy journal is the best way to write down your thoughts, moments, and experiences throughout your pregnancy. Not only is this a great strategy to save the best memories, but it can also be an excellent approach to connect and express your love to your child.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best pregnancy journal?
Keeping a journal is helpful in documenting milestones and moments during pregnancy. It will be nice to look back after a few years and reminisce about the beauty of the journey. There are different pregnancy journals to choose from to suit your preference. The list of pregnancy journals include What to Expect Diary, Pearhead Pregnancy Book, Expecting You, 40ish Weeks, Bump To Birthday, The Belly Book, Pregnancy Journal: A Day-To-Day Guide, My Pregnancy With Sofie La Girafel, and When We Became Three
What should I write in my pregnancy journal?
A pregnancy journal should be complete with details including the number of weeks pregnant and what you did for the week. You can also include the details about how you feel and how the pregnancy is going. It is important, to be honest in with the pregnancy journal, including doubts and worries about the pregnancy. It will be more visual by adding photos and other mementos from the pregnancy.
How do you fill out a baby memory book?
You can fill the baby memory book with different memorabilia about the baby. You can include pictures of the ultrasound, the pregnancy test, baby shower, and the delivery. You can also include weekly pictures of the baby to document the growth and changes in the baby. Also, include the baby milestones of the different first times.
What is BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth?
BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth is a collection of peer-reviewed journals about the aspects of pregnancy and childbirth. It has open access. Submissions are welcome on different topics including maternal health, trends and sociological aspects of pregnancy and childbirth, breastfeeding, and of course pregnancy.
What is a pregnancy journal?
A pregnancy journal is a documentation of the pregnancy journey which is a great way to remember the moments and how it felt. It can include photos, mementos, milestones, and how the pregnancy felt.
What’s the best pregnancy book for first-time moms?
If you are looking for books on pregnancy to best learn from, here are the top-recommended ones to check: Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy, The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, What to Expect When You’re Expecting, The Girlfriend’s Guide to Pregnancy, Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth, and Expecting Better.
How do I start a baby journal?
You have to decide whether you are going to do your journal traditional (book/notebook/scrapbook) or digital. You can then divide the journal into three trimesters to easily tell each one apart. Fill it as soon as you confirmed your pregnancy and do it religiously.
What’s the best app for pregnancy?
There are apps that can help you keep track of your pregnancy including your diet, your baby, check-up schedule, contractions, and other related things that may concern this journey. Apps that you may want to try are Pregnancy Tracker: Baby Bump, What To Expect’s Pregnancy & Baby Tracker, Himommy Pregnancy Tracker, Preglife, Pregnancy Tracker & Baby App, Ovia Pregnancy Tracker, Pregnancy +, and Sprout Pregnancy.