20 Mar Today’s Parent Magazine “The highs and lows of pregnancy.”
It was three o’clock in the morning. Anna Dewar, five months pregnant and utterly pooped from a series of sleepless nights, was prowling around her Toronto apartment. “I noticed my kitchen smelled overwhelmingly like chili,” she says. She figured the garbage bag was leaking and she’d just lift it out and change it. Surprise! “When I took the bag out, it just exploded all over my kitchen floor,” Dewar says. Chili splattered everywhere, and Dewar completely lost it. “I was in hysterics, crying,” she recalls. “Normally, I would laugh. But at three in the morning, totally exhausted, I was feeling like I couldn’t function and my life was over. It was a total overreaction.”
Although Dewar was beyond thrilled to be expecting her first child, she admits there were times when less welcome emotions like anxiety and discouragement temporarily took over. But mood changes are part and parcel of most pregnancies.
“In one day, a woman can feel happy, hopeful, elated, and then have a moment where she’s suddenly sad or worried, or feels very irritable,” says Michal Regev, a psychologist and family therapist in Vancouver. “That’s fairly normal.” It’s also fairly simple to put a few strategies in place that can help even out your mood.