Peter and I are so happy to finally share that we are expecting! Baby Hauschel is due August 8th. We are over the moon, but being pregnant in a pandemic has certainly been an interesting experience. From gym closures to vaccine restrictions, here’s what it’s been like to be pregnant in Germany’s COVID lockdown.
After a summer with few COVID restrictions, Germany entered “lockdown light” on November 2, 2020. However, it was quickly apparent that the measures were not enough to curb the rate of infections. On December 16th, Germany went back into full lockdown. We found out I’m pregnant smack in the middle of all this uncertainty. While the shutdown was initially only supposed to last until January 16th, I’m writing this in May 2021 and every thing is still closed!
I am SO fortunate to have had a very healthy, uneventful pregnancy so far. However, that doesn’t mean it hasn’t been challenging! Due to COVID restrictions, Peter isn’t allowed to come to the doctor with me. That means I am navigating my first pregnancy alone in a language I’m not 100% comfortable with. In a bigger city, I’m sure many doctors speak English, but not out here in the country! Luckily, my doctor has been very understanding. She doesn’t mind if I take videos of the ultrasounds for Peter, and she always takes the time to clarify if I have questions.
The pandemic also impacted how we selected the hospital I’ll deliver in. Visitors are not currently allowed in hospitals, let alone tour groups. We made our decision based on speaking with my doctor and Hebamme (midwife), virtual tours and recommendations from friends. Fortunately, Peter will be able to come to the hospital for the birth. As you can imagine, this is a HUGE relief!
Lockdown Light closed the gyms and public pools, so exercise during my pregnancy has been a complete DIY effort. In order to hit my goal of five 30 minute workouts a week, I go for walks with Chimi and use a handful of different fitness apps. I think it’s been going well! I feel confident and happy while still being sure I’m gaining enough weight.
Visitors and Visiting Others
Between curfews, restaurant closures and restrictions on how many people can meet, we haven’t been hosting or going out much with friends. While the cons seem pretty obvious, the pros of this situation include no unwanted touching of my belly or rude questions.
Personally, I haven’t seen ANY of my family since March 2020. Though I could have traveled to the US and re-entered Germany, the guidance was to avoid unnecessary travel. After getting pregnant, the risks seemed too high even though I’m desperate to see them. Fortunately, the EU has agreed to open back up to vaccinated Americans this summer!
So that’s how being pregnant in a pandemic has been! There’s still been a whole heap of good, even with all the craziness. Are conditions different where you are? Did I miss a topic you’re interested in? Let me know below!
To read more about life in Germany, click here!