Today you saw the baby for the first time via ultrasound. You were overwhelmed at the visible proof of a small life growing inside you. Two days ago, the baby kicked so hard you yelped out loud in the middle of a meeting. And then there was yesterday, when you reached your breaking point: If one more well-meaning elderly woman approached you to rub your tummy at the grocery store, you were going to throw the nearest canned good at her head.
Writing down this incredible time in your life creates a memory capsule for you when first kicks and odd cravings are a thing of the past, for pregnant friends as they experience their own version of the journey you are now taking, and for your unborn children when they become old enough to marvel at what you are now going through.
Additionally, a pregnancy journal allows you to maintain a space that is by, about, and for you. Sometimes it seems as if your friends, family, and co-workers have lost sight of who you are. You are no longer Sally the good listener, Sally the creative problem-solver, Sally the interesting and unique individual. You have become Sally the baby machine. Through daily journaling, you can reconnect with all parts of yourself—not just vital baby-related statistics, but also thoughts, emotions, fears, and expectations about your relation to the child soon to be born.
If you've never kept a journal, getting started can be daunting. Try establishing regular journal topics from the very beginning—items that can be noted consistently throughout your pregnancy. Here's a good list to get you started:
- The date
- Your weight
- What you're craving
- How you're feeling physically and emotionally
- Dreams you've had
- Current events that are interesting and noteworthy
- Thoughts/feelings you've had about the baby
Including these topics will document your changes over the course of your pregnancy and provide a point of departure for more in-depth journaling.