Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Delusions of Miniature...

30 Weeks Pregnant and Delusional

So maybe you've heard about the gorgeous weather we've been having in Britain?  Apparently we're one of the warmest countries in Europe right now, which makes me feel a little sorry for all the people who spent money on trips to Spain and Italy for the Easter holidays.  It seems we've skipped right to summer, which is fine by me.  The only thing is that I've never been pregnant in the summer, so I don't have any appropriate maternity clothes.

In my mind, this was fine because surely my normal shorts and things would fit with the aid of a bella-band.  So when I went to get dressed this morning I dug out a cute pair of khaki of shorts and naively tried to step into them and pull them up.  Yeah, they wouldn't budge over my ass.  The button gaped a good 5 or 6 inches away from the buttonhole.  Welcome aboard the SS NotGonnaHappen.

I mean, really.  Who was I kidding?  I'm 30 weeks pregnant, why in the world I thought I'd fit into a pair of my skinny girl (ok, healthy, average girl) shorts is beyond me.  I can't roll over in bed without a very deliberate though process and series of synchronized actions, but somehow those puppies were going to fit?  Reality check for one, please?

The good thing is that I don't mind gaining weight in pregnancy.  I'm growing a human- it comes with the territory, so this makes it easy to laugh about.  In the meantime though, I guess I better go and do a little shopping.

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Perspective please...

I need it!

I know I haven't written much in the past week.  What with Iwan turning one, and me turning thirty you'd think there'd be loads to write about, and there is.  It's just that with all that's been going on in the past week, I've been left with very little time to write.

And lest you think it's all party party party over here, the biggest time suck of all has been a nasty little virus called Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease.  Iwan came down with this little gem over the weekend, and is just now getting over it.  Poor baby!

While I'm sure my son would argue (if he could) that the most difficult thing about this illness are the mouth sores that made it impossible for him to eat solid food for a couple of days, I, on the other hand, would say that the waking up at night is the worst part.  This is where I need a little perspective.  The me of 4 or 5 months ago would laugh in my present face for complaining about this.  Iwan was notorious for waking up 3-4 times a night until he was about 8 months old, it was really hard but we dealt with (how we dealt with it is another whole post entirely- I'll get to that someday. Promise!).  Since then, G and I have become accustomed to Iwan sleeping 12-13 hours, with the only little peeps heard over the monitor being the contented little snuffles of a blissfully sleeping baby.

But this week he has been waking once or twice in the night because he doesn't feel good.  Totally understandable.  But here I am, dragging myself around as if I've spent the night mainlining tequila with Charlie Sheen.  Again, the me of 5 months ago is shaking her head.  For her, waking once or twice would have been a huge sleep victory.  Granted, she wasn't pushing her 30th week of pregnancy, but still...

I spent a couple hours this morning wondering if I'm going to be able to deal with a newborn again.  I mean, of course I am, but this week has been a little reality check.  I guess it all comes down to expectations.  I would never expect my newborn baby to sleep through the night, so that makes it much easier to deal with the constant wakings.  But when I put my one year old to bed, expecting to snooze right on through, it's much more of a shock to the system when the monitor starts blinking a few hours later.

Here's hoping that little mister feels better soon, and we all start getting a good night's sleep again.  At least for the next 10 weeks or so!

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

On Turning Thirty

I turn thirty this week, and I'm actually quite excited about it.  Since Iwan's birthday is the day before mine, I spent my birthday last year in a hot and crowded maternity ward trying to come to grips with both breastfeeding and hormones that made me dissolve into tears when I realized I'd forgotten to pack a specific pair of pajama bottoms.  So I'm looking forward to celebrating a little differently this year.

I was discussing turning thirty with my husband yesterday, and he asked "when you were little, what did you want your life to be like by the time you were thirty?"  I will say, one of the many reasons I love G so much is because he asks me questions like this.  He challenges me to consider my life from other angles, often revealing a new perspective, for which I am (usually) grateful.  When I had thought about turning thirty it was always through the lens of the present, I had never considered what my past self would make of the life I'm leading today.

The present me puts a lot of pressure on myself about the future.  The present me also holds a certain degree of guilt for being a stay at home mom.  I know that sounds kind of ridiculous, since you always hear about working moms feeling guilty, but it's the truth.  While I love that I have the opportunity to be home with my children, there is rarely a day that goes by that I don't think about the time and money that has been invested in my education, the career goals I set for myself, and this drive I've always had to achieve, achieve, achieve!

But when G asked me this question, all I could think of is that when I was a little girl I mostly wanted to be a mommy when I grew up.  Actually, when asked "what do you want to be when you grow up" I usually answered with " a mommy/pediatrician/actress/astronaut."  I think at one point my goal was to start some sort of commune where everybody would have to live like it was 1850, and I would be the doctor/mayor/mommy.  But that was when I was on a huge Laura Ingalls Wilder kick.  So, yeah, I've always had pretty big dreams, but being a mother has always been a huge part of those dreams.  G's question reminded me of this and put a smile on my face.

I needed that little reminder that we are not defined exclusively by what we do right now.  I much prefer the idea that who I am is a crazy concoction of the dreams of the past, the reality of the present, and the hopes of the future.  It's all swirled up, and probably doesn't make a lot of sense, but it's me and it's pretty good.

In the first 30 years of my life I've worn lots of different hats, and I'll probably wear even more in the next 30. But that's the neat thing about hats, they can be interchanged, packed away, brought back out and dusted off.  You can try on new ones to see what suits, and what's just not a good look. Right now my favorite look is "mommy", and I know that's going to be a staple for the rest of my life.  I'm pretty sure there are going to be loads of embellishments added over the years.  I mean, thanks to my freakishly large head, my hats are custom made, baby.

Monday, 4 April 2011

Real Easy Giveaway **Winner**

The winner of the Real Easy all-in-one minky nappy from BabyKind as chosen by Random.Org, is comment number 19, Working Mama!

Congrats Working Mama- you have 48 hours to get in touch with me to claim your prize (!

Friday, 1 April 2011

I need to buy mascara

I really do, you guys.  It's getting dire.  And lest you think I'm using you as a glorified shopping list, this post does have some sort of a point:  Like I said, I need mascara.  This is something I have thought of almost every day for the past few weeks as I'm doing my makeup. Each time I pull that wand out of its increasingly dry and empty tubular home, I make a little note in my brain to pick some up next time I'm out.

Problem is, my brain no longer labels this information as vital.  As soon as I step out of the bathroom the mascara is shoved out of the way to make way for far more important stuff, like "OMG, why is my child sucking on an open container of lip balm!"

Poor mascara, there was a time when she and her cosmetic compatriots were able to sit comfortably in my mind as I went about the day.  I even made trips to the pharmacy just to buy them.  To be honest, that thought kind of boggles my mind now.  The thought of hopping in my car by myself while it was still daylight, driving to a pharmacy and buying just one item- an item meant to make me look pretty no less, and not something somehow involved with baby poop- radio cranked up, and windows rolled down, just seems so alien now.  Perhaps I'd even drop by Starbucks, or have a browse around Target, by myself.

It's not so much that these things happened, it's that they happened without a second thought.  It's not inconceivable now that I could carve out a few hours for myself to buy beauty products or get a cup of coffee, but it is inconceivable that this would be a spontaneous occurrence.  The trip would have to involve a discussion with my husband about when the baby was last fed/changed/exposed to sunlight, and would most likely also involve an element of practical multi-tasking (I would probably need to pick up milk, bread, and baby wipes).  And, unlike my 26-year-old self, I would relish the outing as a major event, rather than a quick to-do list cross off.

I have spent some time wondering if this is how some new parents begin the process of letting themselves go. Step one, run out of mascara/whatever makes you feel "put together" and mean to buy some more.  Step 2, constantly forget to buy new mascara, realize you can live without it.  Step 3, run a few quick errands in your pajamas. Step 4, your friends nominate you for "What Not to Wear."  It's a slippery slope, my friends.

I love my son, and I love how my priorities have changed since becoming a parent.  But, I also love feeling good about myself.  And, for better or worse, something that makes me feel good everyday is putting on real clothes and little bit of makeup.  For some people, it's making the bed every morning (quite obviously not the case here, if you were to have a peek in my bedroom), or finding time for exercise.  I think the whole idea of letting yourself go means deciding that this thing that makes you feel like you can take a backseat to life's other priorities.  I'm going to try really hard to keep that from happening.  It may not be earth-shattering, but I'm going to go write "mascara" on my shopping list.  Right after I scrape dried mushed banana off the sofa.