Coping With Miscarriage #1 – MINDFULNESS

When I started OutOfHours blog I wanted to share my story of recurrent miscarriage and also help others in a similar situation if I could. So, with this in mind I have decided to write a series of blog posts about a few of the things that I did to help me deal with my miscarriages and how they may also help anyone going through recurrent pregnancy loss.

Please note – this blog post is based on my opinion and personal experience. Not sponsored. Not an ad.

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Aaaaaaand… Let go!!!

#1 MINDFULNESS

What is mindfulness?

Mindfulness is a mind-body approach to life that helps us relate differently to experiences. Mindfulness involves paying attention to our thoughts and feelings in a way that increases our ability to manage difficult situations and make wise choices [1]. Mindfulness is a well recognised within medical and wellbeing worlds and its application is wide and varied. There are also may ways to practice mindfulness from informal daily self-practice to more formal and structured courses.

My mindfulness journey…

I was probably at my lowest after miscarriage number 4 when two of my girlfriends visited me for the weekend. We got chatting about all things miscarriage-related and one of my friends suggested I try a mindfulness app to see if this could help.

“Why?” I thought. “I’m not anxious or depressed, I’m just grieving…”

But something resonated in me. By this stage I was willing to give everything (nearly everything) a go so that I could give my dream of parenthood a real crack. So I downloaded free trials of Calm and Headspace and haven’t looked back since!

I preferred the Calm App. I started with the guided meditations which were 10 minutes long and commenced their 7 Days Of Happiness meditations. I did these every night and yes I often fell asleep (but got some of the best quality sleep in a while so it was worth it for this if nothing else!). The Calm App also has meditations for stress, calm, anxiety and gratitude amongst several other topics. You can also access sleep stories, music, breathing exercises and gentle stretches as well as masterclasses too! (some of these may only be accessed if you pay subscription, but I am unsure of all of the exact details I’m afraid)

After practising regularly I felt different and surprisingly, my husband noticed a sense of serenity about me. I hadn’t even realised how tense I had become following our pregnancy losses but somehow practising mindfulness helped me to start healing my mind. I was eventually able to be grateful for the positives in my life and try to ‘let go’ of the heaviness that I had become laden with. My mindset was slowly, but surely changing and from here I could embark on a journey to heal my heart, body and soul.

TIPS FOR STARTING A MINDFULNESS JOURNEY…

  • Don’t be afraid to try something a bit different
  • Download a couple free mindfulness Apps – find one that suits you and then stick with it. If you like it then pay for the subscription (put a date in the diary to ensure you review your subscription and avoid getting charged automatically)
  • Practice when you can – even at night in bed is better than nothing
  • It may take some time to notice the benefits, so try to stick with it!

I haven’t practised regularly in a long time, but do still use mindfulness intermittently at times of stress and tension. I have also started to recommend the use of mindfulness Apps to many of my patients*. It can be quick and regular practice truly is effective – 10 minutes is really all it takes!

So, I urge you to give it a go. You have nothing to lose and potentially much to gain.

Do you have any mindfulness tips to share with me? Any more Apps that you would recommend? Please share the knowledge!

Big Love

Xx

[1] – Definition form https://apps.beta.nhs.uk/be-mindful/

*The NHS has an online mindfulness course for Β£30 which can also be accessed via the link above

 

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