Archives for posts with tag: pregnancy

I wrote this piece specifically for a writing contest. Alas, I did not win. Such is the life of a writer. Moments of unadulterated joy and success followed by a dark pit of despair and failure. There are rarely middle moments of mediocrity. Or maybe there are, but they get lost in the whirlwind of highs and lows. In my younger years, I think this moment of failure may have destroyed a bit of me. I am sad, of course, but this is not the only thing I have going for me. It is part of the writer’s life. We don’t win them all. Not every reader will enjoy our writing. Maybe you will hate this piece below. I am not sure. I am not sure I care. I wrote it. It is true. It is honest. It is a part of my very being, always lingering behind my happiness. This sadness that engulfed me when my grandma died. A sadness that never quite leaves. It ebbs and flows throughout my day dreams and middle of the night over-thinking sessions. So here is a brief story about my grandma, her life and death. It is not the whole story, I need an entire book for that, but a glimpse into one of the relationships that shaped the woman I am. 

She Was Too Tired


My grandma and I were always close. Summers spent climbing the trees in her never ending yard. Was the yard really as expansive as I remember? It seemed to go on and on. Sleepovers with cuddles on the couch. “Grandma can you play with my hair some more?” The answer was always yes. Her long nails, scratching my scalp for hours on end. Was it really hours? I am not sure, but to me, it felt like she had all the time in the world to play with my hair. Tantrums ignited by having to leave the comfort of her walls. Six-year-old me even ran away from home. Riding my bike across town. Knocking on her backdoor. “Can I live with you? Mom and Dad won’t let me do what I want to do.”

I have this photo of her, my grandpa, and my firstborn son. Sitting on the couch, smiles on all their faces. He was six months old. The only child of mine she got to meet. As I was folding hand-me-down clothing for my youngest son, I came across the onesie from the photo. I stopped. My hands shaking. My stomach began to churn. Gingerly twisting the fabric between my fingers. Tumbling back in my memory to that afternoon. She was on the other side of my camera. Smiling at me.


When I was eight months pregnant with my youngest son, my grandma died. I was sitting in my backyard, watching my three-year-old son play in the sand when my phone rang.

When I walked into her hospital room, nausea enveloped by body. She was hooked up to so many tubes. A giant mask on her face. The hum of oxygen penetrating the empty spaces around us. My grandma, who I used to tell “you’s not fat grandma, you’s fluffy!” looked so thin and frail in that bed. The next few days were a blur. Me and my round belly, waddling back and forth from the hospital. Sitting by her side, with my grandpa, with my dad.

Then came hospice. We got her settled into her room. Everyone gone, only my parents and I remained. I walked over to her, leaned down, and kissed her. Whispering, “get some rest grandma. I will see you tomorrow.”

She took my advice. The next and last time I saw my grandma, whose very presence oozed warmth and grandma-ness, was in her coffin. Unborn baby in my belly. An unborn baby she would never take a photo with. An unborn baby whose middle name would be the very name she gave her own son, my dad. She was too tired to find out how the story ended. She needed her rest.


*Special thank you to my friends and personal editors who volunteered and helped me edit this piece. I am eternally grateful to you and your intelligently sharp eyes. Ashley, Taryn, and Amanda. A writer is nothing without a great editor. Thank you! Thank you to my mom and husband who both told me this was a great piece and are always cheering my writing on. I could send them a run-on sentence jotted on a gum wrapper and they would say it was great! Thank you for believing in my writing no matter what.* 

I am starting to get back to my old level of training. I have really started to push myself again. It has been a long year plus since finding out I was pregnant! One of the most difficult things for me to handle was the way my strength changed. It doesn’t matter how much I worked out while pregnant, the bottom line is, your body changes and with it so does your strength.

After baby arrives you are exhausted. If your child is anything like mine, you spent the first 20 weeks waking up 2+ times a night! Alexander has just very recently started sleeping through the night. When I say recently I mean within the last week! Someone or all of us have been sick once or twice a month since Alexander was born in October. Two bouts of strep. Two strains of Influenza. 5 ear infections. Bronchitis. Several colds. A couple sinus infections. Croup. I was still training throughout all of this. However, I wasn’t pushing myself like I used to. I was just tired. Sometimes sick. But mostly just tired.

Immediately after having Alexander I discovered I could barely do a bridge on my Reformer. I was so frustrated. Bridging is a staple in my training. It is a staple in my teaching. I could bridge until I collapsed. I could have a student bridge until they collapsed. I truly love the way bridging works the entire body. Imagine my complete dismay to discover my core strength was entirely destroyed and I could barely get my tail bone off the mat, let alone keep the carriage at the stopper.


That was then. This is now. Alexander is 20 & 1/2 weeks old. He will officially be 5 months on the 28th. I have started running farther distances. I have started to push myself while doing Pilates. I shake and drip with sweat. Planking is my best friend. I do some kind of plank every single day. My options are abundant with my mat, Reformer, WundaChair, Bosu, and Pilates ball. I could plank all day long if I wanted to.


On Sunday I ran over 4 miles. I haven’t done that since my first trimester of pregnancy. It felt amazing. It felt amazing because I pushed myself to be where I used to be. Yesterday I did an incline program on my treadmill. It had a nice plateau of incline. I smelled like a hockey player when I was done. I have never been happier! I ran 3.2 miles entirely uphill. That is the sweet smell of my fitness returning.

20 weeks postpartum

20 weeks postpartum

I can be very hard on myself. I pride myself on being and feeling strong. So when I struggle to do exercises that I used to be able to do without blinking, I can really feel defeated. I hear a lot “you just had a baby!” I recently asked my husband “Exactly how long is that excuse applicable? How long do you get to say that? I think you get a couple weeks” He told me I was crazy. Maybe. But I also don’t see anything wrong with expecting more from myself. I don’t see anything wrong with pushing myself to be the best I can be.

Lately I have noticed my strength returning. I am able to bridge much better. I can plank rather well. I can move on my WundaChair with greater ease than right after birth. I have noticed my C-scoop improving. My biceps are looking more toned again. I feel I have a lot of work left to do. My hips. My low belly. It will take time though. I am aware of that. I do feel that as I am getting more rest and making the conscious decision to make sure my workouts really work me out, the strength I want will trickle back in.

IMG_7983It is one of the hardest things in life, growing a baby and birthing it. It really changes you emotionally, mentally, and physically. I have done it twice now. It is not easy. You have to be strong in so many ways. For me, my physical strength and fitness helps keep everything else in my life strong. It is all so intertwined it is hard to see where one thing begins and another thing ends. Feeling strong and being strong keep me happy and significantly less stressed. As I am peeking at the end of the exhaustion tunnel, I can see glimpses of my old life and strength returning. And I am positively giddy about it!

I am a week away from my due date! Well tomorrow is exactly a week, but it is 3pm on Friday afternoon, so this day is basically over. Lately I have been thinking about all the things I am looking forward to doing when I am no longer pregnant. See, I LOVE my boys, but I am not a big fan of actually being pregnant. I make NO secret of that fact either. Pregnancy sucks. I don’t care how much someone wants to argue with me on that fact. I won’t have any of this it’s the most wonderful experience ever nonsense. Nope. I have done it because well, I had to in order to grow these two little guys.

So, without further adieu, here is what I am looking forward to doing when I am no longer pregnant:

  • Bending over to pick something up. There will be so much room for activities!
  • Doing normal Pilates videos on Oh my GOD, there are so many that I missed out on over the last 9 months. It will take a while for me to get through them all. I cannot wait. After some postnatal ones, of course, but still, it is within reach!
  • Running. That first run will be glorious. I am sure I will pee my pants a little (a lot?) but I won’t care. I will be running.
  • Sleeping on my stomach. That is my favorite way to sleep.
  • Sleeping on my back for a prolonged period of time without waking up dizzy and readjusting.
  • Getting out of bed without it being a 5 minute process.
  • Rolling over in bed without it being a 4 step process.
  • Playing easily on the floor with Jackson AND Alexander.
  • Shaving my legs without trying to maneuver around the belly.
  • No more maternity clothes woot woot.
  • Shopping for new regular people clothes. Fall is my favorite fashion season. I have already begun browsing new arrivals online.
  • Not having constant false contractions.
  • Rehabing my separated pelvis so standing up doesn’t hurt.
  • People not fussing over “should you be doing/lifting/moving that?” I do what I want folks!
  • Not peeing every 10-15 minutes.
  • Not getting winded going up the stairs.
  • Running around with my kids easily.
  • No more belly butter! I plan to treat myself to a nice new sheet set since my greasy belly butter has stained a couple fitted sheets.
  • No more person sitting onto of my ribs, yes on top!
  • Moving like a 29 year old, not an 89 year old.
  • No more nausea (hopefully)
  • No more relaxin in my system. See ya later, sucka!
  • Every single prone position Pilates move.
  • Not feeling like a bloated whale every second of the day.
  • My thighs and butt returning to their normally scheduled programming (size)
  • Last but not least: Snuggling this sweet baby boy of mine whenever I want to.

Anything you would add to the list of things you are/were looking forward to after having a baby? 

I am smack dab in the middle of week 38! A week and a half away from my due date. Over the course of the last 38 weeks I have mentioned from time to time that this 2nd pregnancy is much different than my first. These last few weeks are no exception.

The last few weeks with Jackson were so boring. Nothing exciting happened. I was sitting around waiting every day for something to happen. Nothing! I went into labor at 40 weeks 3 days and delivered at 40 weeks 4 days. I didn’t have a lot of pre/early labor activity. None in fact. I opted for a membrane sweep around 39 weeks I believe. Even after that, barely anything happened.

With this pregnancy we had our preterm delivery scare and hospitalization. Since then, it has been nonstop action. I started actively and continually losing my mucus plug at 36 weeks 1 day. It has literally happened daily since that point. I have had actual bleeding. I have also been having contractions. Some just tightening, oh yay Braxton Hicks! Some are actually painful enough to wake me up in the middle of the night! However, they never stick around long enough to be in active labor. My OB just said, “yeah you are having contractions. Just call when they are 8 minutes apart for an hour.” Lucky me. I get to be in this first stage of labor for weeks.

It feels insane to me that I have been at both ends of the spectrum. I am not sure which I prefer. I did tell my husband last night that I am going to have this baby at home. Since my body has been on such a roller coaster ride I no longer trust any signs. I don’t time my contractions because it ends up being a waste. They just stop. I am not really telling my husband when they happen anymore, because they just end up stopping. I am never going to believe that I am actually in labor. He replied “you do know that as much as I joke about it, I am not actually a real doctor.” I said “You helped deliver the first, you have the basics down. We will be fine.”

I am just sitting around waiting now. No longer getting excited at any of the first stage of labor signs. I suppose sitting around is really not true. I am still staying active. I do rest a bit each day because I am in some pain, especially my pelvis. However, I am still working out. I am still doing Pilates, walking, and swimming.

38 weeks. Pilates on the Wunda Chair.

38 weeks. Pilates on the Wunda Chair.

Not that it is speeding anything up! I have even taken to having Jackson talk to his brother through my belly telling him to come out now! Jackson asks me every day if it is time yet. I have explained to him that it could be any day now. The wait is almost over. He is just as anxious to have a little brother as I am to have a little baby. Although, I am imagining the relief I will feel not having an uncomfortable belly full of giant baby and he is imagining the joy he will feel having a permanent playmate. We all have our priorities in life. Ha!

This isn’t the most candy coated post. I suppose you can blame the hormones, exhaustion, and soreness. I am hoping my next post will be an introduction to Alexander or his birth story. Keep your fingers crossed for me. If not for me, then for Jackson, since he really wants to meet his new little best buddy!

Playing with Alexander

Playing with Alexander

When I am out and about without Jackson, I often get the question “Is this your first baby?” I remember how much I would beam when I was asked that with Jackson. I would get giddy and excited to say yes to that question. It was all so exciting and new. I would be floating on cloud 9 thinking about all the possibilities impending motherhood would bring.

Obviously, this time around the answer is “No, this is my second baby. I have a 3 & 1/2 year old too!” I am so excited to meet Alexander. I cannot wait to kiss his face and his little baby feet. The feeling I get when asked that question this time around is a touch different. I would equate it with utter pride. I feel so proud to answer no to that question. It makes me feel empowered and strong. I have this sense come over me that feels as if I should say “I have done this once before and I am choosing to do it all over again. I feel strong. I am a strong, confident, content, happy mom.” Empowerment to the 2nd degree.

I don’t doubt that I can do this and handle having two boys running around. I understand we will have great days and bad days. Just having one child has taught me that. When it is a great day I always make sure to tell Jackson “I am having such a great day with you.” We get to say that a lot in this house. He says it too. We acknowledge our bad days as well. They happen. We move on though. Let’s have a better day tomorrow! Sleep will help!

I enjoy being a mom. I never hate it. I never feel totally defeated. Frustrated, angry in the moment, slightly annoyed, sure those emotions happen at times. I have a fast rebound rate though. I think I was born to be a mom. That is where this confidence over adding another to the mix comes from. I know I can do it. I believe in myself. I know I am strong and can multi task. This has been my favorite job ever. I know I can adjust my schedule to fit in the things I want to fit in. I prioritize things that I want to accomplish. Each person is different, so other parent’s priorities may be different than mine, but I think that is the key to parenting. You literally cannot do it all every single day, but you can try to do the things that matter most to you and your family.

While I may not get teenage girl giddy over questions about what number baby this is, I do get the feeling of “I am momma hear me roar. I got this.”

My sweethearts

My sweethearts

I am lounging on my couch as I start this post. Not necessarily because I want to be lounging around, but because I am supposed to be lounging around more. 

Wednesday I went to my weekly OB appointment and follow up ultrasound. The appointment was at 11. I expected to be home by 11:45 the latest. Instead I was sent to the hospital by my OB and immediately admitted for further tests. The reason I was having a follow up ultrasound was because they have been monitoring my amniotic fluid. Well, the results of this week were 5.8. Which is borderline immediate induction low. Below 5 and they would have induced me being 35 weeks along. 

I was tested for a break in my water bag. That came back negative. Well, all 4 tests for that came back negative. They put my on IV fluids and there I stayed. I wasn’t supposed to get up for much more than to pee. The plan was continuous IV until Thursday morning when they would give me another ultrasound. If my amniotic fluid was 8 or higher I would be released. 

I happened to have fallen the previous Saturday. I was playing soccer in my driveway with my son and husband. Nothing intense as Jackson is 3 & 1/2. Just normal kicking the ball around. I went to get the ball and my foot got stuck in between one of our brick pavers. I fell down. I landed in a lunge (yay Pilates!!) So my left knee took the brunt of the fall. My belly next to my right leg, which didn’t hit the ground. I was fine. I stopped playing and went inside, but there was nothing to worry about. I did mention it, just in case. Turns out, I should have kept my mouth shut. The labeled me a FALL risk because of it. I had awful obnoxious signs on my door and I got a lovely accessory. IMG_7749

Even my husband laughed at me for this. It was so over the top. A non pregnant person would have wiped out too. The tip of my foot was literally stuck in a hole! I probably went down better than most people because I am in such good shape. I made my opinion on this heard. That I thought it was absurd! 

My sweetheart came to visit me after school. I was so happy to see him. He really cheered up my day. I missed him terribly after he left though. I certainly would have preferred to be at home snuggling with him over sitting in a hospital bed pondering the fact that in a few hours I may have a premature baby.

My sweetheart

My sweetheart

Things were a little boring after he left. My husband stayed with me. My mom took Jackson to our home and spent the night with him. I didn’t sleep much more than an hour all night. Labor and delivery beds are NOT comfy for overnight sleep, especially if you are not in active labor about to meet your new baby. Plus, my separated pelvis was highly irritated from sitting and laying on the rock hard surface. I listened to two babies be born. I listened to my unborn baby’s heart beat on the monitor. I listened to different mediation tracks on Spotify. I worried about what the morning would bring. I had a nightmare about a garish blood draw. I finally gave up around 6:30am and got up for the day. 

My breakfast left something to be desired. I was pretty disappointed with my burnt toast. I didn’t order anything else except fruit. I ate the toast. But it tasted like it looks. 

mmm burnt toast

mmm burnt toast

We were supposed to be waiting until 11 for my next ultrasound. I kept counting the hours. How many more I had left. I finally switched to sitting in the rocking chair. Ahhh sweet relief for my pelvis. The nurse came in shortly after. It was just past 10am. My primary OB was in the hospital and changed my ultrasound to right that minute. We were thrilled. Again I was constantly sending mental vibes to my uterus, “please be at 8 or higher. Please” I laid there watching the screen and the face of the tech, trying to determine the results. I saw him type very low centimeter results in all the scans. 1 here 2 there. In the back of my brain rationalizing, they must add that all up. They must! Finally he told us “It is looking like it is 8. Yeah 8.”

I was hopeful on the ride back to my room, but ultimately it was up to my OB to decide what to do. Almost 3 bags of fluids and I was just at an 8. Not 8 point something. Flat 8. We sat in our room waiting. Finally the nurse came in and said “The gods must be with you. You’re being released!” 

That was the fantastic news. The bad news. I am not out of the woods yet. We have a follow up ultrasound and appointment on Monday. It is likely that I will be closely monitored from here on out. Also, I am not allowed to exercise anymore. I am not on bedrest, but I am supposed to take it easy in general. I can do normal every day activities. I have to watch what I lift. I am not supposed to lift Jackson unless it is absolutely necessary. 

Monday will determine what happens next. I will be just over 36 weeks, still not full term. It will help to decide how often I have to see my Dr, how often I need an ultrasound, if I need to be sent back to the hospital for more fluids, or if I need to be induced. It is a big day, that Monday.

I am not good at sitting still. I hate it too much, actually. I am pretty upset that I cannot exercise anymore. I do not know the last time I went this long without working out. 8 years? I don’t know. My husband is treating me like a porcelain doll. Another thing I hate. I am very independent. I don’t like being overly babied. I hated being pushed around in the wheelchair. You have read my feelings on the fall risk situation. I like to do things for myself. It is hard to take a break. I insisted on grocery shopping myself today. It is a normal every day activity. I didn’t lift one grocery bag in or out of my car though. I went to Old Navy for comfy yoga pants to lounge in. If I have to be lounging, I want to be able to wear something comfy. I also got a pedicure. That was the only thing I didn’t have to defend to my husband. He is fine with spa treatments, since you sit around being pampered. As I was leaving for my pedicure my husband said “you have almost used up all your allotted walking time today” He was hoping the Dr would put me on bed rest or at the least very limited activity. I have explained to him being told not to exercise is a prison sentence for me and that since I can do normal every day activity he has to give me some room here. That being said, I have been taking sitting down breaks. Compromise. 

That is where I am this Friday afternoon. Sarcastic, annoyed, and well, frankly, a little worried deep down. I don’t want him born prematurely. It is a hard balance. I want to be my normal exercising active self but I don’t want to cause harm to my little spitfire. Wish us luck on Monday. I am going to take it easy this weekend. Other than Tae Kwon Do for Jacky, we have no plans. I will be trying to not be a cranky lady who hasn’t been allowed to workout. I am trying to adjust to my new normal. 

I am in the middle of week 34. It is crazy to think that this baby boy could be here in 5 & 1/2 weeks. 

34 weeks 1 day. I can't wait to put all of these belly kiss photos together.

34 weeks 1 day. I can’t wait to put all of these belly kiss photos together.

Realistically he will be here sometime in the next 6 weeks. I am hoping for 5 1/2-6 weeks, not sooner. Big brother Jackson was born 4 days after his due date. He thrived. He was alert from the moment he left my body. Born with wide open eyes. This is the first photo of him I shared with people. 



See, very alert just an hour or so after he was born. I want the same for this sweet boy. Healthy, strong, alert. So I am fine with waiting past October 4th if I have to. But either way, 6 weeks will fly by with a 3 & 1/2 year old to keep me busy. 

We made a lot of progress this past weekend on Alexander’s bedroom. It is practically done. All I am waiting on is my new glider. It was set to arrive at the end of August, so tick tock. But the major things are all completed. 


Crib, bunting, and garland

This was the first thing I had completed. It was all by its lonesome while we waited for a situation with the dresser we ordered to be fixed. I am so excited about his color and pattern schemes. I have had some fun mixing different patterns and colors. It feels so fresh in there. 


Hand painted sign and toy basket

I painted that sign for him. It is one of my hobbies. I don’t paint as much as I would like but I do from time to time. My favorite things to paint are things for my boys. Jackson has an assortment of paintings. This sign in particular is special for Alexander. It is from the song that inspired his name. I fell in love with the name Alexander because of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros’ song Home. I had to incorporate it into his room somehow and I solved the problem of creating my own painting. The basket is a Colonial Mills rope basket. I have a few of those throughout his room. I also have a couple from Target. I went with the woven basket theme for storage. 

Speaking of storage….



This is his walk in closet. It was the only bedroom closet on the 2nd floor the previous owners did not have redone at The Container Store. I felt I had to spruce it up a touch. I simply lined all the shelves, 9 total, with chevron shelf paper. It took a bit of time to cut them all down but I am very happy with how it brightens up his closet. Those grey baskets are the woven ones from Target. 



This dresser was an adventure. It took us over a month to get all the pieces from the company. I won’t go into the long story. It looks really nice though. I am obsessed with that lamp! I had to have it. It is by Zutano. I purchased it off of Amazon. The curtains are from Pottery Barn Kids. They are blackout curtains. Grey chevron. They are lovely and do a great job of blocking out the sun. The blue basket is Colonial Mills and again the grey is from Target. The floating shelves are also from Target. I like Target, ha! The seat turns into a bassinet and we may use it in our bedroom for a little while. We will see. Jackson was in his own crib about one night after we got home. But this chair easily switches from a bassinet to a seat while baby is in it, so it will be perfect for use around the house. 

That is where we are with Alexander’s bedroom. Once my glider arrives and I get my pouf and side table I will share that set up. All of his clothing is washed, folded, and put away in his drawers. He has newborn diapers, wipes, tons of blankets, and swaddlers. We are using Jackson’s infant carseat. I have our new Joovy Sit N Stand stroller. That hangs out in our dining room. 

Carseat, Joovy Sit N Stand stroller, and a carseat cover from Etsy

Carseat, Joovy Sit N Stand stroller, and a carseat cover from Etsy

I am also obsessed with this carseat cover. I love it. Being an October baby in Chicago, I am guessing he will get a lot of use out of it. 

I even have my diaper bag, which I definitely treated myself to. I decided that since my whole world is now men, that I would get a diaper bag that screams me and is truly for me, reflecting my style. IMG_0015I have an obsession with Kate Spade everything. Not just diaper bags. I keep this sweet thing in the plastic wrap in the shipping box. I haven’t taken even one tag off yet. I have considered starting to pack it a bit for the hospital. That will probably happen in the next week or so. A small secret? I definitely got this during their recent flash sale. So not only did I get a perfectly me diaper bag by my favorite designer, but I got it at a steal of a price. Triple score. 

And now, we wait out the next handful of weeks! I cannot wait to cuddle with both of my little boys. 



I have started and failed to finish several posts this week. It has been difficult for me to get into a good writing flow. They were all very long posts but they just didn’t seem right to me. They all were incomplete as well. I have had a lot on my mind but the words just won’t form correctly. Today, though, I am going to try a bit harder.

Yesterday evening I was thinking to myself that I would really enjoy it if I had a rainy day tomorrow. A day to just slow me down a little bit. A reason to stay inside, cuddled up with my sweetheart. A day where I could use the bad weather as an excuse to not run errands, go somewhere fun, walk to the park, or whatever ever else came up. 

For over a week I haven’t slept through the night. Last night was no exception. As I lay in bed I considered a walk to the park with Jackson today. No workout, take a rest day because I haven’t taken a rest day in over a week either. But a nice 1.5 mile walk and maybe some swimming. My brain was active as I lay in bed considering all the things I could do today. I finally decided to get myself up for the day, having stayed in bed a bit later knowing I didn’t plan on fitting in a workout. Alexander started slowing moving around, then kicking. It was time to start my day. 

Imagine my surprise as I waddled into my kitchen, not greeted by the usual beaming sunlight that radiates through the massive set of windows we have. I was greeted by grey sky, rain, clouds, and utter wetness outside. My heart skipped a beat. My rainy day! I hadn’t even checked the weather forecast yesterday. I had no idea rain was coming. I just wished it would, to force me to slow down a touch. As I sit here and write I am accompanied by the sounds of rain falling on my skylights. Heavy raindrops writing their own song. Jackson is still asleep. He likes to sleep late on rainy mornings. There is no sun radiating around the small space around his blackout blinds. 

I am not sure what we will do today. My dishes could be washed. I was too tired last night to wash the ones from dinner. Legos are already spread across my kitchen table. Except for the small area I am afforded for my meals and well my laptop I am typing on now. We have a ton of books we could read. I have a new big Ninja Turtles coloring/activity book we could make our marks on. Maybe we will do all of them. If he keeps sleeping much longer, there won’t be a nap today. Especially on a day where we don’t wear ourselves out playing outside or going on an adventure. 

As I sipped my coffee earlier, watching the rainy day, I couldn’t help but thank my Gma (that is what I called her a lot). I can’t help but feel like she may have had a hand in providing me with exactly what I needed this week. Forcing me to slow down a little, her girl who is always on the go. Thanks Gma, you did me a solid. 


View from my kitchen

I am a bookworm. I have been since before I learned how to read. I have vivid memories of my mom reading to me when I was a little girl. After learning how to read, I couldn’t put books down. I would spend hours in the library deciding on which books to check out next. It was always torture that I could only take a few at a time. My grandma would take me to the library with her and we would spend hours? there. To me it seemed like hours. I am not sure how long it was in actual time. As a child though, I was in that magical wonderful place for what seemed like an eternity. In college I spent a lot of time studying in the library. If I had time in between classes I would head there to read, study, work on things, or just be there.

I have worked to pass that on to Jackson and soon Alexander. Their book collection is extensive. I even have a book box where I add new books all the time and Jackson gets to pick a new book rather often. Last night I decided to grab two new books that I wanted to read to him. One of them is titled If I Could Keep You Little.

I bought this book a while ago. I read it in the store and cried. The premise is a mom who would love to keep her child little but knows she would then miss out on all the great things they did as they grew. I think this is my number one struggle as a mom. The idea that one day my boys will leave the nest. That one day I will have to let them go play outside in the big world without my hand a few inches away. I try to not be a total helicopter parent. I don’t hover constantly, especially in our home. I let Jackson play on his own. But outside, in the big scary world? He is only 3 & 1/2. I am not ready to let him wander. I don’t have to be ready quite yet, but one day I will.

The tantrums and arguing back can be hard. The bad days where we all don’t seem to sync up can be rough. But that is not the hardest part for me. With those moments I have about a 2 second rebound rate. I never feel defeated or that it drags out to the next day or even the next moment. Sometimes I can reset with just 20 minutes. It is the letting go that I know I will struggle with more and more as my boys grow.

Having a new baby on the way 4 years after we were expecting Jackson has proved that. I have seen now how much I have let go over the past 3 & 1/2 years. Much to my surprise. Things changed a little every single day. I do it, but it doesn’t mean that it was easy. To be honest, I usually still feed Jackson dinner. He can do it. He prefers me to help him. Much to my husband’s eye rolls. But one day he won’t want mommy to scoop his food and feed him. I will probably be trying to convince him to sit down and eat with us! Those are the kinds of things I think about. While I am saying “But Jackson, you are a big boy, you can feed yourself, right? You do it at breakfast and lunch!” In my head I am just perfectly fine with scooping that pasta into his mouth for him.

I made it through the book this time without crying. I didn’t even choke up when I read it to him. I even was able to point out similarities in his life and watched a big smile beam across his sweet soft face. My lap has less room these days. My belly is getting big. Less than 2 months to go until I have two boys squirming for space. But each day we cuddle on Jackson’s old rocking chair and we read books. We adjust every day to that growing belly. I suppose that is what parenting is. Every day you adjust to the changes just a touch. You have to wiggle something over to make room for something new and different. Some new skill, ability, task, thought, need, or want. Sometimes it happens without you even realizing it. When did my belly get so round? When did Jackson have to learn to sit differently on my lap? It wasn’t in one fell swoop. We grew together.

How I long to keep my boys little. Even looking back on infant photos of Jackson, which I have done more and more lately, I wonder, how did he grow into this boy? As we tucked him in and he had to show me one last fancy trick before being snuggled under his blankets I just watched his face. The book fresh in my mind. He used to be this squishy little infant, with a personality, but certainly not this specific personality. When did he grow into this little boy and leave that squishy infant behind? When did I stop using onesies? When did my world revolve around themed tshirts and pajamas? Spiderman adorned my sweetheart from head to toe last night. No more sweet baby blue footie pjs for him. He used to fit into all the clothing I have purchased for Alexander. Now, you couldn’t get a foot in some of those.

But, like that book tells me, if I kept him in those, I would miss out on him calling to me as I left “Mommy one more hug and kiss. Hugs and kisses are my favorite.” They are mine too sweet boy, whether you’re a newborn or a grown man. They will always be my favorite, in every stage you pass through.

Our growing family

Our growing family

Yesterday was my very first run while 8 months pregnant! Over 31 weeks along. I cannot express how much joy that brings me. I set a goal for myself to run throughout this entire pregnancy, until this baby boy is delivered. I know that is a rather big goal, as you never know what can happen on this 40 week journey, but it is what I have wanted to do.

When I was told about a month ago that my pelvis is separated, I really thought my running days might be numbered. I didn’t really speak of it in those terms, but in the back of my mind I was slightly panicked. This wasn’t my plan! However, I have good days and I have bad days. I am seeing the Chiropractor two times a week and it has helped immensely. On bad days I behave myself and I skip running. I turn to Pilates and swimming instead. Sometimes, even long walks with my older sweetheart. Yesterday was a good day, so I hopped right on that treadmill of mine. I have had to give up outside running because of the hills. Hills really can flare up my pelvis, which continues to separate even after being readjusted. My OB said this was likely going to continue to happen until after I give birth. At which point, when the hormones have cleared my system, she thinks it will return to normal. Even walking up a hill too quickly can cause some pain. So I modify.

I feel thankful to be a Pilates instructor. It has helped me to adapt to my situation. I am comfortable with modifications and understanding how the human body, specifically mine right now, works. It really touches into all aspects of my life. I understand anatomy. I read voraciously about all aspects of what I am dealing with, about Pilates, running, prenatal fitness, really anything I can get my eyeballs on.

Yesterday while stretching after my run, I could see how my right leg was aligned differently than my left. It was crystal clear to my eye. Which helped me to remember to change my gait and positioning to try to help the situation. I am feeling good again this morning. Nothing flared up from my run and swim yesterday. It is a good day. I was going to get another run in until I discovered that for some reason we do not have any water pressure this morning. Not just low water pressure, but literally, none. Nothing comes out of an faucet. I am taking a rest day at this point. I am not sure when my actual last one was. If I can’t shower I don’t want to be run stinky, I would rather try to be less stinky all day! Ha! I am sure I will get into the pool at some point though.

I have wanted more control over this pregnancy. I was so unsure with my first. I had no idea what to expect or what I was getting myself into, good and bad! I felt a little blind and nervous. This time around I feel so confident. I feel like a seasoned veteran. Things have been entirely on my terms. Same with my labor and delivery plans. I want it to be on my terms as much as I can this time. I am not afraid. When I walk into that hospital I won’t be scared like I was with Jackson, thinking “I don’t think I can do this!” Nope. I know I can do this. I have done it before. It is no big deal. It was over before I knew it. I wish I had this mentality with my first, but you live and learn. In order to grow we must experience. With this baby I do what I want. Please add a sassy head shake to the end of that sentence.