I've been a little quiet lately, which if you know me either means I'm angry, or that I have something so big going on that I can't talk about it.
Happily, it's the latter. I'm pregnant!
As you can imagine, being pregnant has affected nearly every area of my life. Nutrition and exercise required some tweaking, because the first couple months were a little rough with nausea and exhaustion. It was manageable if unpleasant, but it helped me learn to be flexible and just do what I could and not sweat the rest. I have more energy these days and the nausea has passed. Fewer food aversions too, which is nice. When I was super nauseated, vegetables sounded like a hate crime, and I couldn't stand them raw or cooked. I mostly drank them in green smoothies, to give the baby some nutrition. I love fruit, and have been craving juice, which is funny. I eat a lot of cheese, crackers, yogurt and oatmeal. I also have a lot more fiber which is great for baby, and also pretty decent for my cholesterol.
Now that I'm in a better space physically, I've been cooking and meal planning more often. I find that I'm eating a greater range of nutritious food, and not getting as fussed about the stuff that used to bug me. It feels good to be less obsessed with how my body looks, and I hope it lasts, but who knows. Body dysmorphia is a life long process.
I'm also back to getting consistent exercise. When I was flat in bed, napping after work, exercise was totally not on my mind. The return of energy means that I can get back to the movement I love. It's interesting - a lot of folks seem to assume that exercise is easy for me - and I'm sure, physically, I have some privilege there, sure. But to be honest, it's as hard as it's ever been.
Part of it is that I challenge myself, because I'm someone who gets bored easily, but also: exercise is just hard when your body is sore or it's cold or you have mobility or health problems. It's always a mental struggle to get myself out of whatever cozy situation I'm in and just go. But I do it—for my health and my baby's health, and because I love lifting a bar. I remembered that this week when I was at CrossFit, doing 5 x 5 light deadlifts. I just love lifting weight, knowing I'm strong enough, finding out how my body works. It's when I'm most embodied. Well, that and yoga. I’m going to find a prenatal yoga class soon too.
All this to say that I'm feeling pretty good about my health. I reactivated my habit tracker. I had given myself a break for the first trimester, but this week I turned it back on gladly. I like the daily reminder to check in with myself and stay true to the balanced habits I'm trying to cultivate.
What I like about it is that I've made remarkably moderate habits. No "run 5 miles at dawn" or "eat only green vegetables". It's just eat until I'm close to full, then stop. Exercise. Don't eat food that doesn't satisfy me. Get good sleep. Meditate. All pretty sensible stuff.
I honestly think this daily habit check-in is the answer to being a healthy and fit person effortlessly. This goal is kind of big anyway, since it's a lifelong process. But I think I've found the answer. I'm being pretty healthy, while still having some needed indulgence (that's homemade fudge sauce on ice cream, next to the kale, above), and it doesn't feel stressful or crazy or lame. It just feels good and interesting, which is the balance I want to strike.
This baby is already teaching me to let go of control. I don't have much control over the kid, over who it will be, or what it will do. Or even how this pregnancy and delivery will go. I'm okay with that. I made my peace with it early on. I didn't want to be locked into conflict between letting the kid become themselves vs. my own expectations for the next 18+ years (and forever, really).
I think getting pregnant was one of the best things to ever have happened to me, honestly. And I'm grateful for it. Even if something happens and it doesn't work out, a small risk, but one that I think about sometimes, I'm still thankful I got this experience.
See you in a couple months baby. I can’t wait to meet you.