One of my mentors in college just had his first child. The image of the baby lit up my Facebook feed, like an oasis of redemption amidst hordes of anxiety-inducing COVID-19 news. After all, babies are referred to as “bundles of joy” for good reason—the relentless continuity of life will always, always be a triumph, which is especially poignant now as the pandemic continues to hound the world. Yes, it is true that health workers far and wide are weighed down by the outbreak, but they still stand as more than just virus-fighting professionals: They are also constant witnesses to new life, as babies are born every single day.
The arrival of a child, even with the pandemic in the background, is nothing less than a profound miracle. I can only imagine the strain of preparing for parenthood during these trying times. But, if my mentor’s joy is any indication, it seems that having been blessed with a child is an infinite reward in and of itself.
To gain more insight on what it’s like to prepare for a baby amid the global crisis, Preview got in touch with Tricia Gosingtian and Kryz Uy, dedicated creative professionals and mothers-to-be. When asked what helped her the most during her pregnancy journey Tricia answered: “Being able to talk to other moms-to-be! I’ve had so many meaningful conversations with them over the course of the past 9 months.”
“Trust your baby. Trust your OB. Reach out to someone if you need reassurance,” she added. So, to all of you who are expecting a child a soon: You’re not alone!
According to Kryz, pregnancy during quarantine isn’t easy. “[I have] to self-medicate symptoms sometimes because we are not able to see our OB for regular check-ups. [I also have] anxiety attacks due to everything happening and my crazy hormones,” she said.
Meanwhile, Tricia contemplated the parallelisms between her pregnancy and the current situation. “Every day is never the same, and there’s so much uncertainty that you can never be truly ready for. I am confronting a lot of different feelings all at the same time, but remembering to trust the process (including the people around me and the healthcare workers who will be helping me deliver my baby) keeps me grounded during these trying times,” she said.
“Focusing on what I can control keeps me from unnecessarily panicking during this pandemic. There’s actually a lot of COVID-positive cases in my barangay, but I see everyone’s doing their best to contain/manage it in their own capacity. I’m inspired to do the same,” said Tricia. As of writing, she is at 38 weeks, which means her delivery date is coming soon. “My baby is going to be a true quarantine baby,” she said.
On the big day
“Overall I am well, and the baby is healthy. We are lucky. However, I can’t shake the uneasiness of not knowing where I’m going to give birth, not being able to see my OB, or possibly not being able to have my husband or mom with me during labor,” Kryz said.
In line with global efforts to keep hospital spaces as spare and sterilized as possible, a woman in labor is only permitted one legal companion, while only essential staff will be present during the delivery proper. “I had to come to terms that my husband will not be able to be with me during labor and delivery. As a first time mom, the thought is truly daunting, but I realize that I’m not going to be 100% alone. I trust in our frontliners completely!” Tricia said.
On drawing strength and keeping calm
Apart from her career as a blogger, Tricia also runs Hinhin, her fashion label. In addition to caring for herself during her pregnancy, she’s also had to make adjustments to her work strategies amid the pandemic. “I personally don’t have enough emotional bandwidth to create content at the moment (besides my once-a-week maternity OOTD) as well as push any retail agendas (with my personal business) since I don’t think it’s the right time. But I don’t take it against other people who use this time to be productive and post light-hearted content. We’re all coping in our own ways,” she said.
“I quote my own tweet: “This is a pandemic, not a vacation. You can’t gaslight people into thinking they’re the problem because they’re not spreading ~*good vibes~*. It’s okay to voice out your concerns and fears. Sure, we all have different ways of coping, but let’s try to stay away from toxic positivity. This being said, I allow myself to feel angry, scared, or anxious during these times. I tell my baby that these things happen. It’s not always going to be sunshine and rainbows. How we overcome challenges is what’s important. Nowadays, I draw strength from the thought of one day being able to contribute to a new world where my baby can enjoy his freedom.” she said.
Tricia also recommends trusting your child, who is as much a part of your pregnancy as you are. “I talk to my baby boy every day. I ask for his help to show me the way as he will be my source of strength and direction when I deliver,” she said.
Your loved ones can also be your most valuable motivators! According to Kryz—who is currently in her third trimester —her husband’s support and love have been most helpful during this season. “My husband always seems to be there for me and know what to say or do,” she said. (If you want to learn more about her pregnancy journey, you can check out her YouTube channel, where she also posts lifestyle, beauty, fashion, and travel vlogs.) When asked what advise she can give to pregnant women to find themselves restless, she said, “Cry it out if you need to. Take deep breaths. After you let it out, let it go and move on.”
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