Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Keeping a Journal during Pregnancy

There are a few things I really wish now that I had done during my two pregnancies and births. The first one is that I wish we'd taken more pictures of me/baby during pregnancy, labor, and right after the birth. I do have a few for each child, but looking back I really wish I had more.

The other thing is that I wish I'd kept a journal. Not necessarily a formal one; I do have one partially filled out in a sweet book my sisters gave me when I told them my husband & I would be trying to conceive. I treasure that book, but now I also wish I had more of a day to day or week to week informal record.

In fact I started off well during my first pregnancy, but that only lasted a few weeks; here's a few of the entries:
October 13: Your first Maine hike – “The Roost” near Gilead, Maine. We had perfect weather: beautiful blue skies and peak fall color. I had a difficult time hauling us up the mountain.

October 16: I had my first real dream about the baby: we were at the doctors having an ultrasound done & the baby was very clearly a boy!

October 17: Our first trip to the doctor’s to get blood drawn. It was strange to stare down at the paper and see, under diagnosis, “pregnancy”!

There are tons of online journal websites, some baby-oriented and others not. And there are lots of blank books, and baby "fill in the blank" journals at bookstores.

Here are a few additional resources:

The beautiful Birthing From Within Keepsake Journal.

In the September e-newsletter, Birthing From Within's founder, Pam England, discusses the three kinds of knowing as "primordial knowing", "modern knowing", and "knowing thyself" - this is a terrific article, and also a good starting place for considering why/how journaling can be a helpful part of birth preparation.

The Week Fifteen Lamaze e-newsletter also discusses journaling, "Focusing on your thoughts and daydreaming about motherhood can be a great way to slow down and relax. Even if you don’t think of yourself as a writer, journaling can help make your feelings, thoughts and concerns clearer to you. Furthermore, spending time thinking about your growing baby starts the important bonding process even before your baby is born." This article also includes some journal writing prompts.

I've never gotten into the whole scissors/layout/stickers thing, but this scrapbooking website has some good suggestions for a pregnancy scrapbook or journal.

More good ideas here.

Here is a link to Wondertime magazine's journal prompts for young children.

And this is an intersting blog post "Journaling Can Provoke an Oxytocin Response".

Finally, if you want to read other people's journals, you can look online at pregnancy blogs, or go book shopping. A few of my favorite books are Having Faith, by Sandra Steingraber, The Blue Jay's Dance, by Louise Erdrich, and Operating Instructions, by Anne Lamott.

Christina @ Birthing Your Baby
Independent Childbirth Classes for Central Maine

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posted by Christina Kennedy at


Anonymous Pregnancy said...

In the stage of pregnancy,being a mother they are a lot of things to consider and to have a moment to cherish.I hope soon If am in that stage I could experienced the same too.

January 6, 2009 9:11 PM  

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