It can be hard seeing physical changes happening to your body, all before your eyes and so quickly too. It's only natural that being pregnant causes your skin, belly, waist or legs to change shape and texture; those parts you may have been quite fond of before becoming pregnant.
You might find those dreaded stretch marks creeping around your tum, your ankles swelling up to represent tree trunks (pic of my swollen ankles below), or the sudden appearance and unwelcoming of thunder thighs, but you're not alone. Between 75% and 90% of pregnant women get stretch marks - and with the help of products such as Bio Oil, which I'm currently plastering on myself daily, they can fade and become almost non-existent.
Last time I weighed myself, which I haven't made a habit of whilst being pregnant, I had put on over a stone. However, whilst putting on one, two or three stone may seem a large amount, it's quite normal for pregnant ladies to put on this amount of weight. If you think about the weight of your baby as well as the amount of extra fluid you are carrying around your body, it more than makes up for this.
I have to say that I do struggle some days in terms of the physical changes happening to my body. I hate that my clothes don't fit me and that I can no longer see my feet, but this isn't forever. It's all for a good cause. An incredible one in fact!
It's not only physical changes that might knock our confidence whilst pregnant. With the crazy hormone changes going on, you might feel that you become particularly stressed, depressed or anxious. All of which play a huge role in the way we feel about ourselves and have the potential to affect our daily lives and relationships. Luckily, I haven't suffered from any of these through my pregnancy, but know friends who have. If you're really feeling the emotional hormonal changes and it's affecting the way you feel, make sure you speak to someone, whether that's a family member, friend or even your midwife. It helps for the people around you to understand what you're going through and how you're feeling. A problem shared is a problem halved!
You might be one of those pregnant mummas who haven't really changed physically, apart from the belly which is bound to get larger as your baby grows. For some women, you get the "Is she pregnant, Isn't she pregnant" question floating around people's heads. I've had a lot of "What a neat bump you have" and "You're blooming" comments. What does that even mean? Is that just a polite way of saying you've put on weight?
But just you, YES YOU, remember, no matter whether you're confidence has been knocked physically or emotionally, you've got one of the most exciting things happening in just a few weeks/months. Soon you'll be holding that bundle of joy, full of total and utter love, the kind you've never felt before, and the things you've been through in your pregnancy may not matter anymore. Just think, women go on to have more babies, so it can't be that bad :)