Pregnancy has literally become a pain in the arse.
With Sadie, I was able to exercise normally and regularly right up until her scheduled c-section.
That included lots of walking, yoga, and even 5 mile hikes on the weekend.
With this nugget, a 20 minute strength workout and a short dog walk has me laid up for days.
My back, legs, and glutes are literally on fire.
I feel like I’ve run 10 miles at the end of each day.
It’s so frustrating!
So here are the things that count as exercise now:
Walking up the stairs.
Walking up the stairs with a 23 pound toddler.
Walking anywhere (slowly)
Hunting for Easter Eggs
Having a stomach bug (“burned” a lot of calories that day!)
Gardening (I hear it’s a great workout!)
Walking the beach
Nesting Cleaning the Garage (5 hours of manual labor)
I can tell that you’re wondering why these photos of me “exercising” don’t actually have me in them.
It’s called a partner workout.
So shut it.
I also wear a weighted vest all day to increase the muscle burn.
I just carry around a bunch of extra baby weight.
Speaking of baby, she’s apparently all snug in her home.
Heartbeat ticking away normally and kicking Dad when he tries to hug me.
At 36 weeks, we’ll start checking to see if she gets into position or stays
stubborn breech like her big sister.
I wonder if I’ll ever feel like I have “enough” time to do all the things I want to do.
Which is where mindfulness comes in.
Mindfulness is the practice of focusing on the here and now.
Mindfulness is not worrying about the past or stressing about the future.
I have known for a very long time that the research supporting mindfulness was growing, and I’ve even touted it’s praises to clients that would listen, but it was not something I practiced myself.
Until this year.
At school, the guidance counselor and I started a mindfulness based group to help kids with anxiety and self-regulation.
For the first five months or so, I thought it was “great for the kids” but didn’t feel like it was something that would ever help me.
I mean, I STILL couldn’t quiet my mind for five minutes despite months and months of practice.
I just figured it wasn’t my thing.
Until it was.
All of a sudden it seemed like it all started to click.
I was less anxious.
And even though I wasn’t great at quieting my mind for five minutes, the mindfulness practice was clearly helping me during the rest of the day.
You know who else is GREAT at teaching you mindfulness?
They truly teach you to live in the moment.
To stop what you are doing and enjoy whatever they are enjoying.
To stop because they need you to pay attention to something at that exact moment.
It might be to listen to their belly laugh.
To reassure them that you’re still there.
Or so they can show you the shoe that they just found under the kitchen table.
Kids are also really, really good at commanding your attention if you didn’t listen well enough the first time.
A series of progressively louder mom, Mom, MOMS! until you attend to whatever it is they need you to notice.
Why do kids get it so easily and yet it is so hard for adults?
When did we get so mixed up?
Is it pressure from society to be busy, busy busy?
Is it this idea that slowing down is somehow the same thing as being lazy?
Is it that we’ve become so self-important and yet so self-sacrificing that we can’t stop to breathe, enjoy the sensation of the warm sun on our skin, or just let our thoughts go for a few minutes each day, every day?
My favorite parts of the day are when I feel really in tune with the people around me.
When I stop to help Sadie learn a new task or take interest in the bird she pointed out that is sailing across the sky.
These are the moments that fill my heart and soul.
I’m not claiming to be the best at it, but I do know it’s something I want to keep doing.
And who knows? Maybe all this mindfulness will mean the new nugget will be born with a natural ability to stay calm, cool, and collected in a world with a lot of extraneous outside noise.
And maybe she’ll even sleep more peacefully at night.
That’s what I’m REALLY praying for.
PS! If you’d like to give this mindfulness thing a whirl, check out the website and APP called Smiling Minds. It can be tailored for young kids, older kids, and even adults! The meditations are short and sweet for those people who feel like there just isn’t enough time to squeeze one.more.thing. into the day.
I can not tell a lie.
The idea of raising a girl terrified me.
The idea of raising two girls is……..hard to even put into words.
I worry about what it means for a girl to grow up in a media driven world that wants her to
Idolize Disney Princesses
Wear all the pink
Play with “Brat Dolls”
Think math and science are hard
Get the longest eyelashes!
Burn that booty back into shape!
I worry about them having to navigate Facebook, friendships, mean girls, fighting, bullying, cyberbullying, unwanted sexual advances and really scary stuff like sex trafficking.
Do moms of boys worry this much?
It’s not that I would prefer boys or that I would ever change anything.
It’s just that sometimes I feel paralyzed with fear for all the bad things that could happen to a young girl.
And then your wise and worldly gestational 19 week old reminds you that girls rock.
I can’t think of the last time that I felt such pure, free, and unadulterated joy.
That everything was right with the world.
That I should just keep learning, growing, and doing my best to raise little girls that rock the world with their very existence.
I should have realized all of this already with Sadie.
The girl who loves playing with rocks, blocks, fish, bugs, worms, and farm animals.
The girl who refuses to watch tv (despite my best efforts!), who climbs everything with reckless abandon, who loves getting caught in the rain, looking at the moon, and pointing to all the airplanes in the sky.
Also the girl who plays with baby dolls, screeches at Mariah Carey decibels, and hugs stuffed bunnies.
She’s sweet and sassy and everything that a girl can be.
As her interests broaden and grow, I can’t help but daydream about all the magnificent things these girls will do.
I only hope I can show them the world and that they can make their world everything they want it to be.
Rock on, girls.
Sadie is napping and I, for once, am not spending these quiet moments cleaning or sleeping.
I already feel like I need to apologize to number Two, because number One is keeping me too busy to blog with the same regularity as I did before.
Now I understand why there are so many more pictures of first children!
Now, there are no free hands to snap styled and posed pictures like in the old days.
Welcome to Second Child Syndrome, Thing 2.
The upshot is you will most certainly develop a wildly funny sense of humor in an effort to stand out as the youngest in the family.
I know because that’s my area of expertise.
Here’s the second pregnancy lowdown:
1. The queasiness has set in. Bleh.
2. I wake up feeling hung over every morning. Except I didn’t imbibe yummy libations the night before. Instead, I fell asleep at 7:30 with a cookie and Netflix.
3. All I want to eat is JUNK FOOD. Pizza, burgers, french fries. If it’s greasy and salty, make it a double.
4. I don’t have as much time to Dr. Google every.single.symptom. since Thing 1 is always in the go (See above). I guess this is good?
5. With Sassy Jane, we were able to get weekly ultrasounds practically from conception. It is SO HARD not to have weekly reassurances that everything is progressing normally. We won’t have our first appointment until 8 weeks and I’m not even sure they can check for a heartbeat with the doppler that early.
6. I have no idea what to expect at a traditional first OB appointment since we were with the Rolls Royce of Reproductive Specialists for the first one.
7. I already worry about being able to manage two. I can barely manage the first one 98% of the time!
8. I am LOVING the new degree of independence Thing 1 has developed. Now that she can get herself around and communicate more with us, life feels 200% easier.
9. “Easier” is a misnomer. Nothing is easy.
10. I ran out of thoughts. Time for a nap.
It is nap time and I have approximately 7.6 minutes to update you on the last 9 weeks. It’s more efficient to do this in list format and who doesn’t love a list anyway?
1. People who are horribly unorganized.
So here’s what you’ve missed in the last 63 days:
1. 61 days of extreme nausea. The kind that feels like those moments juuuuuust before you’re going to puke but you’re not sure if you’re reeeeeallllyyy going to puke so you just go hang out over the toilet and then you end up puking because of the visual cue of hanging over a toilet.
2. 59 days of meals that consisted of heavily buttered toast and waffles. Every meal. All day. I never want to see toast or a saltine again. Just kidding. Toast is glorious.
3. Halloween! Sadie dressed up as Cindy Lou Who from the Grinch and it was A-DOR-ABLE. ADORABLE! The concept of trick or treating was completely lost on her but Mom and Dad made out like bandits. Gluttonous, gluttonous bandits.
Sadie made her big reveal to the family that she is going to be a big sister! She wore a hot pink t-shirt that said “Big Sisters ROCK” and strutted her stuff all around the turkey. Several of our family members thought we were referring to our dogs but at least one (a newly initiated in-law) finally figured out the meaning behind the message. I would have taken a picture but I was deep in the throes of recap number 1 (see above).
Sadie’s grandparents came to visit and………..
I overshot that 7.6 minute nap estimate by approximately 6 minutes.
Be right back.
……..and she loved having lots of playmates! They played silly games and Sadie learned about 758 new gibberish words and 5 actual words. She now calls her Dad by his first name and tells us all when the dogs are misbehaving.
6. Baby, Baby, Baby
a. . Baby had a “dating” ultrasound. Everything is right on track for June 21st!
b. Mom had a blood test for genetic abnormalities in baby and to determine the gender.
c. Mom got to hear the baby on the doppler. Baby’s heart is beating strong at 160 BPM. (Just like big sister at the same gestational age).
7. The GENDER REVEAL!
With all of our family so far away, we wanted to do something special. What better gift for Christmas than finding out if this little nugget is a boy or a girl?! We hand painted foot prints on ornaments of silver and gold, packed them up in festive boxes, and sent them to our loved ones to open on Christmas Day.
I bet you want to know the color of that footprint, eh?
It was PINK!
Almost exactly two years apart.
If you blink, they turn a year and a half.
Life happens faster than the shutter speed on the fanciest camera.
I’ve written two sentences and I’ve already had to stop twice to wrangle a rogue toddler.
She thinks she’s grown because she can walk…..
all over the house and right into our hearts.
She’s training for the big leagues now.
Some of her adventures have included the zoo, the Children’s museum and the pumpkin patch.
I’m pretty sure we’re raising a strong
I can’t wait to see what direction life takes us next!
SADIE JANE’s List of Loves:
1. Helping with the laundry
2. Reading ALL the books! Animal books and “Moo Baa La La La”
3. Playing with the “DOH” (dogs)
4. Helping to clean the house with her mini mop set
5. Playing hide and seek…..with herself
6. Slamming doors in Mom’s face
7. Trying to swim in the toilet
8. Playing with rocks
9. Eating fruit. Any fruit. Only fruit.
10. Scanning the sky for airplanes