Still Swimming?

Do (or did you) get asked if you are “still…” doing something while you are (were) pregnant?  Are there things you wish you could do still, while pregnant, or wished you could while you were?

It seems the near end of the third trimester brings about a whole other set of questions.  ”You’re still…?” or “Are you still…?”  With Susanna, I was pretty much living a quiet life in a small and new town.  My circle of human interaction was far smaller than it is with this pregnancy.  I didn’t experience the “still…” questions.

Just this week I’ve been asked in a few e-mails if I’m still swimming.  A few others have commented more directly on it.  One of my beloved swim mates told the front desk people that, “I’m convinced she’s going to give birth in the pool.”

The same day that my swim mate said that, as I was completing a solid 2400 set, I thought, “Wow… I never did this with Susanna.  There’s only a few more swims to go and I’m really doing it.”

Athletics weren’t my strength in school and growing up.  Swimming has always been my love.  With Susanna, my body did not tolerate chlorine at all.  To be able to swim this late in the pregnancy and this consistent (after five weeks off in the summer and lots of ups-downs in life) is a blessing and a gift.

I’ve pondered if my water will break in the pool.  If we might avoid a repeat C-section due to the swims.  I don’t know.

When my swim mate shared her comment, and I followed with my above-noted pondering, she lit up.  She and another less frequent swim mate were fully on board to my going into labor in the pool.  While I noted the cleanliness factor and other perceptions, their love and support was felt.

To have this amazing group of women observing and encouraging my health, the health of our daughter, and pregnant activity in general is wow-some.

So, yes, I’m still swimming.  Still hitting goals.  Still keeping pace.  Still feeling completely famished post swim and eating a massive amount.  Still enjoying long, warm showers after the sets.  Still doing yoga in the pool to open my hips.  Still saying, “thank you..” on each lap to count.  Still embracing the feeling when my body is enveloped in the water for the first moment.  Still varying my sets.  Still doing what I love and feels right.

What are you still doing?  What do you long to still be doing?

A Newborn Photo Story

Did you take photos of your newborn or do you plan on it?  What was the set up behind it?

A little disclaimer- E is still safe inside.  Plenty of activity.  Lots of strength.  All is well.

The post resumed-

Two nights ago I chatted with Scott about my concerns regarding newborn photos.  About what the images say.  About when, where, and how to share the first photos of E.  About the message we want to send.  About storytelling in photos and in words.  About using our strengths and combining them.  About photos of newborns that we’ve seen that make us go, “huh?  What?”  About honoring our daughter.  About staying true to us.

Much like the sunset silhouette maternity photos, I have ideas for the newborn photos.  For the first images that we share. For when they are shared.  I’m realistic in that one series or a photo from an envisioned series will take some coordination and prayers… some weather blessings if you will.

I also understand and accept that family and friends are curious.  That this world is a highly visual world and images are important to people.

As we talked, as we listened, and as we questioned, we came to a point of stillness, a place of peace.  We heard our hearts and we left the to-be-taken photos at a point of continued prayer.

For us, images are more than just a picture.  The first image of a child sets the story, the opening scene or pages, for his/her visual life captured by others.  The child has no say (in theory or practicality) over the image(s) a parent or other chooses to share.  For us, being aware of the images and the story are hugely important.  Details matter.  Images and words blended with grace are key.

For me, too, there’s a matter of caution.  There’s a level of protection and a desire to be with my family, away from social media. There’s a true likelihood that I’ll have a repeat C-section.  If so, it’ll be different than a C-section after 36 hours of labor, after being awake for over 48 hours.  If so, I’d like a different experience, one in which I remember consciously being with my daughter versus being drugged up and just wanting to heal, yet grateful for Scott’s loving our daughter.

As a result, we’ve agreed (at this time) on combining a single line of poetry with a non-face image.  Hopefully this will happen, yet, you never know.  Our views might change.  I just feel that the first 36 hours are crucial to protecting our family…to establishing our bond of love, of healing, and of compassion.

In time, there will be other images shared.  Yet, I’m not willing or wanting to do the “standard hospital baby photo.”  Scott understands.  He likes blending our strengths (my images, his words) in sharing our daughter with the world.

Of course, as I noted before, I’m realistic.  I might not have a repeat C-section.  I might have a long labor and delivery.  Any number of other factors might happen.  Yet, our vision, our communication, our listening, and our hearts will guide us.

The story of our daughter, of her newborn photos, are very important to us.

What makes a good newborn photo to you?  What images or elements do you like to avoid with newborns?

 

Are you a fan of the simple, the big, or the other?  What are you celebrating? Saturday Sips continues.  Today we’re celebrating and sharing the simple.  The wonderful bits that make up the sprinkles of life’s ice cream or cake.

  • Going to the freezer for one thing and discovering another.  On Thursday I went to the big freezer for ice cream, which I really didn’t need but kind of wanted.  When I opened the freezer, I noticed it was off.  Fortunately the mass amount of food in it was still very cold and in totally-edible condition… and the freezer was back on in a few minutes.  Thankfully my desire for ice cream or who knows how long it would have been before we discovered it, as we had no plans to go to the freezer for another day or so.
  • “I’ll be back in 5 minutes… oh the light!”  While prepping for burning a bunch of limbs and plant material, I looked down the street toward the ocean.  I saw the light, sped inside, and told Scott I’d be back in 5 minutes.  A few minutes later, we shifted dinner a bit, and we were all down on the ocean’s edge.  Oh, the light!

oct-sunset2

  • One other swimmer.  Sometimes I really love the pool to myself. The silence.  The serenity.  The stroking.  During a swim this week, there was only one other swimmer.  He commented that a particular day of the week is quite quiet and we’d be the only two.  He’s a fabulous man with much history.  The bliss of a still pool was incredible!
  • Cleaning the garage.  The relief of having a garage that is far better organized is huge.  We did this last Saturday and I’m in love with it.
  • These reads.  Amy’s OWS race report- I love the past paragraph! El Mundo Marino- a book we read so often that I have it memorized and still love it!  Even better is Susanna’s understanding of it and “pinza” movements.

How is your weekend?  On what are you sipping or sharing?