Sadly, there will be no more babies for me. I've been blessed
with two healthy and beautiful boys, both now in the rhythm of school, sports and activities.
Our baby gear has long been sold or given away. But that doesn't mean I won't
always get giddy with anticipation when I see a friend who is newly pregnant.
Today, a friend
of mine revealed she is pregnant for the first time, and my mind swarmed with things
I wanted to tell her.
Here's what I want her to know.
1. Pregnancy is when you are at your most powerful
"All systems are firing!" I used to think to myself. It's when everything that has
not been asked to work suddenly has shifted into high gear. I was constantly
amazed at the changes and adaptations of my body as my babies grew. And my hormone
high helped me to love everyone and everything around me. Honor your body and
the amazing job it is doing.
Fat is great for brain
development. At least that's what I told myself as I ordered chocolate shakes
almost daily during my pregnancies. (I ignored the sugar content, natch.) Eat
healthfully, but also enjoy the eating for two. You are supposed to gain some
weight, so don't obsess over your own body. Obsess over the body you are
building inside of you.
3. Birth hurts
I've done it both ways—with the
assistance of an epidural and without. The benefit of the epidural is that it
hurts a lot less. I remember a lot more because I wasn't preoccupied by the
pain. The benefit of giving birth naturally, for me, was the knowing I had it in
me to deliver a baby just like so many millions of women before me had done. It
was the hardest thing I had or have ever done, but I'm happy that I was able to
overcome the pain to deliver my second child the old-fashioned way. And yes,
without drugs, I was up and walking around almost as fast as the Princess of
4. Ask for help
One of the biggest gifts in my
life is the time my parents (who live thousands of miles away) spent at my home
after I had my two children. They stayed for four weeks. My mom did all of the
laundry, my father fixed things around the house and mowed the lawn when my
husband returned to work. They made sure everything around me was taken care of
so my husband and I could give the attention we needed and wanted to give to our
newborn. If your mom or dad, or aunt or best friend can't be there for you in
that way, ask other moms for help. I would love to match baby socks from the dryer
or change a crib sheet.
5. It's not always going to be perfect
is messy, and it's not a job for wimps. When my children were small, those were
some of the hardest days of my life. I beat myself up when I felt as though I
had failed at being a "great mom," and rarely celebrated the days when I was
one. But, as they say, the days are long, but the years are short. It's so true.
I feel as though I blinked and my baby was turning 10 years old. Savor the
moments you can, take pictures and breathe.