April 30, 2011

Perception VS Reality

There is no denying that parenthood is a life-altering thing. But not just because suddenly your life is filled with diapers and bottles and messes and discipline and all of those things you think of when you think about having a child. It is also life-altering ways you have no hint or foreshadowing of. More specifically, I'm referring to the way your perception of things change. Some of these changes are gradual, and some are extremely abrupt. No matter the speed or strength with which these perceptions change, however, I still find myself marveling, every time, at how much a child changes your world.

Audia was a planned baby. I can still remember chatting with Chris over beers about whether or not we felt ready for kids, and going over the details of both of our life goals and wishes and where kids fell into that. I remember the excitement I felt as we both came to the agreement that we were financially ready, both with steady, dependable jobs, and that we were definitely both emotionally ready for the "leap" into parenthood. Two months later we were officially on the road to becoming parents. Our plan was to stay in AZ for another 3-5 years, moving back to MN when Audia was getting ready to start school. I would reduce hours at work and Chris would arrange his schedule so that while we both kept our jobs, Audia would not need to go into daycare. We would maybe try again for another child around the time that we moved to MN, though plans that far down the road were flexible and up in the air. Then the recession hit right around the time Audia was born. I was laid off two months after her birth, and Chris' work all but slowed to a halt. We were forced to move across country to Minnesota, and in with my parents, when Audia was only 8 months old. Our plans drastically changed. Our perception of how our lives would be was in total limbo; to say that it was dramatically altered is an understatement. But thanks to some amazingly supportive family and to the unshakable friendship that our marriage is based on, Chris and I managed to get through the next year and a half of scraping pennies, job hunting, and living in extremely tight quarters with very little suffering. Not to mention the silver lining....Audia had the benefit of developing an extremely close relationship with my parents thanks to our living with them for 18 months, which is something that I will be forever grateful for. Admittedly, I've always placed having kids before home ownership and my career on my list of life goals because my parents are older and it's always been a worry of mine that if I wait too long to have children, they wouldn't have the chance to develop a memorable, meaningful relationship with them. Point is, that life path that Chris and I chatted about three and a half years ago is for the most part just a memory. But I like the path we're on now just as much, if not better.

A more recent and smaller perception change that I've had occur is my desire to have a May baby. Haha. I've always said that the last month I want to have a baby is May. May has always been a crazy-hectic month for my family, and is even more-so since I married Chris. We have mother's day, four family birthdays, our anniversary, and memorial day. Not to mention 3 friends' birthdays. So, no May babies was my rule. Now, however, that I am 34 weeks along and really feeling the stress this pregnancy is putting on my body, I am all for a May baby. Join in the fun, Callen! As long as you're healthy and ready to breathe on your own, of course.
I get asked a lot how I'm feeling. And my answer is usually "pretty good." For the most part, I feel fine. Except when I try to do any amount of walking that extends beyond from room-to-room in our apartment. Then all of the bones and joints surrounding my pelvis and the base of my spine start to groan, then whine, and eventually scream at me to stop. Something as simple as a trip to Target can render me pretty much immobile for an entire day. And don't even get me started on the pain that is generated by trying to roll over in bed. The SI belt that my physical therapist recommended helps (I think?) to a degree, but not enough. There is also, of course, the quintessential exhaustion and being short of breath constantly, and heartburn after eating more than a cup of food at a time. But those things really don't bother me that much. It's the pain that I am ready to be done with. And it's the pain that will probably keep me from getting pregnant again. Unless, of course, my perception changes with time (which I'm sure it will.)

April 27, 2011

Spring Fever

Spring has been a bit wishy-washy for us this year. I have been joking that Mother Nature has developed a sudden case of bi-polarism, and we need to find a way to get her to take some lithium to curb it. It'll be in the 60's and sunny for a couple of days and then we'll get SNOW. Seriously, Mom N. It's almost May. As much as I love the snow in the winter, and roll my eyes at people who complain about it then, I have jumped on the complaining bandwagon now. April showers are supposed to bring May flowers. When those showers involve SNOW, I am pretty sure that they are killing the flowers that we are supposed to be seeing in May. Not cool. So, we've been trying to take advantage of every warmer, sunny day we get by planning things outside. Since my last post, we've gone to the Zoo with N and A,


And took a trip to the playground with Grandma

Tried out Audia's new trike and played in the back yard with Grandma and Grandpa,

 And spent a good part of Easter playing in my parents back yard.

(among a few other un-photographed outings.) And while we have been having a lot of fun, it does feel like a bit of a tease. Especially for my poor Audia, who doesn't understand why we were outside playing in the warm sun on Monday and then yesterday and today we have to stay inside to play and put on our winter jackets when we go outside. Although I suppose it is a good lesson in flexibility.

April 6, 2011

30 weeks

I've said it a few times already, but I seriously can't believe how fast this pregnancy seems to be speeding by compared to my first. I'm already 3/4 of the way done, and that's assuming Callen sticks to his due date! (I have a gut feeling that he'll be early.) I am sure that a lot of it is because of how busy my life is with Audia, but I think part of it is also because I've been through it before. It is amazing how much more relaxed I am about things this time around, especially considering the fact that this pregnancy has been significantly harder for me physically. I can only imagine how much more relaxed I'll be in parenting Callen vs. Audia.

So, here I am at 30 weeks with Callen.

And here I was at 28 weeks with Audia.
Yah. BIG difference. I still, at 30 weeks, have not reached the weight I was at my 8 week appointment with Audia.

I've finished all of the projects that I wanted to get done before Callen's arrival well in advance of when I thought I would. I finally finished his blanket.
And I painted a canvas to put above his crib.

Audia, of course, wanted a canvas for her room, too, which I also did.

So now I'm out of projects 9 weeks ahead of schedule and am itching to find something new to tackle! Any suggestions? Having had something to keep my craft monster well-fed every day at nap time for the past 7 months, I suddenly feel lost without anything to work on!

In other news, Monday was the first time that we had to bring Audia into the doctor for an emergency consult. Considering that she's 2.5, and how distracted (I am trying very hard not to use the word c-l-u-t-z)she can be while running, that's pretty amazing. She tripped and nose-dove into the bench of a picnic table and I was certain that she broke her nose. No blood, but severe swelling and a healthy dose of bruising immediately after it happened. Luckily, the doc doesn't think it's broken, and though she said it would look worse before it looked better, it was looking much less bruised yesterday and today you can hardly tell that anything happened.

Spring finally seems to be shoving winter aside for good, so we have some fun outdoor stuff planned for the rest of the week and this weekend. Photos to follow :-)