GUEST AUTHOR: Michelle Stroud of By the Moon is a Reiki Master, Holistic Reproductive Practitioner trainer, and reflexologist, living and working in Belleville, Ontario, the traditional and unceded lands of the Wendake-Nionwentsio, Mississauga, Anishinabewaki and Haudenosaunee people. You can find more amazing information about pregnancy, birth, and energy healing and learning opportunities with Michelle at www.bythemoon.ca.
Morning sickness, pregnancy sickness, nausea/vomiting of pregnancy, emesis gravidarum, affects more people in pregnancy than not. Most people feel ill to varying degrees for at least the first trimester of pregnancy, sometimes longer. It's not uncommon for people who experience nausea and vomiting to later experience significant heart burn in the third trimester.
Why are so many people affected by sickness during pregnancy? Sickness during pregnancy has been attributed to increased estrogen and progesterone levels that occur during pregnancy. However, not all people who are pregnant experience nausea and vomiting and evidence hasn't shown people who experience nausea and vomiting during pregnancy to have higher hormone levels than people who don't.
Scientists have wondered if low blood sugar caused by increased demand from the fetus, hCG hormones and more sensitive smell are linked to morning sickness but there's still no clear explanation as to why some people experience sickness during pregnancy and why some people don't.
There is a long list of natural remedies that some people find useful to ease their symptoms. Eating regular sources of soluble fibre (like nuts) can help eliminate excess hormones sitting in the digestive tract after being eliminated by the liver. The soluble fibre absorbs bile and moves it through the digestive tract before it can be reabsorbed into the bloodstream. Sour or bitter foods help others, probably because they also gently stimulate the liver to support this process. Mint and ginger are common nausea remedies as well.
When sickness or heartburn are very bad, people will find relief from prescription medications that are believed to be safe in pregnancy. Others will receive no relief no matter what they do.
Why do some people experience such severe sickness during pregnancy while others experience none?
My experience has been that sickness in pregnancy can be a manifestation of suppressed fears. It's not uncommon when some people think about a negative outcome, fear a potential future event, or think about something that they don't want to happen, for them to stuff it away, to tell themselves not to think about it, or to distract themselves with another thought. If you are someone who is experiencing sickness in pregnancy, I would suggest you explore this possibility for yourself.
I have known someone whose fear was puking. She would start to feel nauseous but it would get worse because her bigger fear was the act of getting sick. When we worked through what her fear was, she practiced releasing the fear in a different way. If she started to experience some worry - nausea, before it built too much she would start an inner dialogue about how puking was just one way that her body purges negative energy. By acknowledging the fear and reframing the act of throwing up she dissolved the fear and her nausea disappeared too.
On a more significant note, I had a client who experienced repeated miscarriages, another possible manifestation of fear of the future. When we explored this possibility I asked her if when she is pregnant if she also experiences significant sickness and she confirmed that prescription medications couldn't even help the severity of her sickness in pregnancy. What were her fears? Her body responded and she had an emotional response as she expressed how fearful she was of her children dying or that she was destined to die in childbirth. When I asked her what her coping mechanism was when these fears pop in she shared her inner dialogue that included reassurance that everything was okay. Instead, we took a short time to look directly at her fears. What if? What would happen if these scenarios played out? I allowed her to go there in a safe space. She had a space to express her fears fully. A deep Reiki session helped her return to a state of deep ease and relaxation with a focus on giving special healing attention to the areas of the body where she felt a physical response as well as the known areas for the storage of fear energy.
Some of us are more prone to fear than others. I like to think of my fearful clients as my most creative, imaginative clients. They have amazing imaginations that create detailed stories, but unfortunately these stories are almost always terrible outcomes and obviously always future based. To live in a fear state is a future based existence. There are so many possible futures ahead of us that we cannot even know all of them. To attach ourselves to one terrible possibility steals us from the present moment and it prevents us from truly connecting with our intuition. To be present in this moment, to have a balance of stillness with our active lives, leaves space for intuition in this moment, a knowing of what is needed, a truer method of keeping ourselves and our loved ones safe.
It is my experience that energy healing and emotional support, with some techniques clients can take with them and practice themselves, absolutely does minimize and even eliminate pregnancy sickness. I absolutely believe and have seen that pregnancy sickness can be an energetic manifestation. There are other layers to this as well and it's always unique to each individual client. It's amazing the stories that they bring and how profound their healing experiences have been.