Pregnancy is a time for change. And for choices. And we're not just talking about whether you'll paint the nursery pink or yellow. "While you still have more time, re-evaluate what means most to you in life and what obligations you can let go of--for good," says Wendy Clarke Wilcox, M.D., M.P.H., professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City. Read on for some points to ponder at this crucial juncture.
Your marriage Pregnancy can be a very self-absorbed time, and women often forget about their significant other. "Remember, your relationship with your partner is the foundation for your child," says psychotherapist Tina B. Tessina, Ph.D., author of The 10 Smartest Decisions A Woman Can Make Before 40 (HCI, 1998). Make time to discuss your upcoming roles. What's your partner's greatest fear? What is he looking forward to most? Let him in on what you're thinking and feeling. Talk about how other couples work out the 24/7 demands of life plus kids. "It's easier to be objective when you look at someone else," Tessina says.
Your spirituality If you've been ignoring your spiritual side, you may want to consider it now that you're having a child. Spirituality doesn't require going to a church, mosque or synagogue. "Take the time to sit in your backyard and look at the stars, or light a candle and take a bath while reading an inspirational book," suggests Wilcox. "When your life becomes all consumed with the baby, it's helpful to sit back and think about the bigger picture."