I'm writing you to you feeling so much better than I was in my first trimester—thanks to changes in hormones, and also some of the tools I'll be sharing with you in this post.
I've recently had to remember so many of the techniques I learned years ago when I was feeling totally uncomfortable in my body everyday... tools I've been passionately sharing with my clients over the past few years.
In pregnancy, I am reminded how debilitating and distracting it can be to feel uncomfortable in your body ALL THE TIME, so I want to offer a few of my favorite ways to help us feel comfortable in our bodies NOW, no matter where we are in life, and no matter how much we love our bodies (or don't).
1. Comfort happens in the present moment
Don't wait for feeling good to happen later, or when you've lost weight... it's a sensation that we can only experience here and now. I used to tell myself that I wasn't worthy of feeling good or comfortable until I lost weight, so I'd buy myself extra tight clothes and suffer as a way to punish myself for being so "fat." Or, I'd keep myself uncomfortably tense and hunched in an effort to hide myself. All this did was make my body feel afraid, uncomfortable, and encouraged it to hold onto padding to protect itself.
2. Focus on what feels good now
Try to see if you can find one part of your body that feels okay in this moment. It could be your big toe, your pinkie finger, your chin or your chest—it doesn't have to be anything big. Just focusing on the feeling of okay-ness (even if small) can help amplify a feeling of comfort throughout the body.
3. Warm water heals
Most human bodies love warm water. So if you're feeling uncomfortable in your body—especially if you feel sick after a big meal, instead of berating yourself for overeating—draw a bath or make some tea. The soothing effects of the warm water will help ease digestion, stress, or discomfort, and allow your system to let whatever you're feeling pass through with more ease.
4. Wear loose, comfortable clothing
Like I wrote above, I used to punish myself with tight clothes. I also used to mentally punish myself by holding onto clothes that no longer fit as motivation to lose weight. Wearing loose, comfortable clothing is such a simple yet profound way to instantly help our bodies feel more at ease.
5. Slow down
Our body's natural rhythm usually enjoys a slower pace than how many of us are inclined to live these days. In simply slowing our breath, our movements, and maybe even our thoughts, we can begin to add a little bit of spaciousness in the body and mind that can feel really good. Plus, when we're moving more slowly, we have more access to what's present, which is where comfort and feeling good happen in the first place!
The bottom line is this:
You're allowed to feel good here and now, regardless of what you've accomplished today, how much you weigh, who loves you, or how much you love yourself.
P.S. This past year, I started spelling my name "Ali" because I liked how simple and easy it was. However, I'm feeling called to return to the spelling "Allie," as my mom named me.
In preparing to name my child, I'm so moved by the motherly role of giving a name. I'm in awe of the power involved in the naming process of one's child, and what it means to carry, birth, and name.
I want to honor my mother's own process, and the way it connects her and me to a never-ending chain of parents naming their children. It feels really right for me to return to Allie as I weave my own little one onto that chain.