This weekend Jeremy and I hopped in the MINI with one small shared duffle bag, a bottle of water, and my go-to snack of raisin + goji berries + walnuts, for a quick jaunt down to Austin, TX. The purpose of the trip was to celebrate the launch of Well Fed 2 (written by my client-turned-friend Melissa Joulwan, photographed by her husband David Humphreys, and designed by Braid). But I have to admit, after what felt like a draining week, I was really looking forward to spending 12 out of 24 hours in my little car (new! and with cruise control!) with my main squeeze and hours upon hours of TED Radio Hour to catch up on.
We paused between learning about success, exploration, and unfair wealth distribution from brilliant minds to load up on sugary kolaches (a pastry similar to a danish with fruit jelly loaded up in the middle) at the Czech Stop in West, Texas – which despite it’s name is actually just north of Waco. The Czech Stop is a dingy gas station, like most gas stations, with clean-enough bathrooms and brown brick tiled floors like McDonald’s used to rock in the 80s. But it’s something more too. It’s a huge bakery that allegedly employs most of the town. Jeremy and I dominated 4 kolaches between the two of us before even hitting the on ramp for I35 south. And we did a repeat on the way back up I35 north too. You might be thinking “Hey! That doesn’t sound paleo. Or healthy.” I was judging myself too and falling into a sugar coma when Jeremy reminded me that while West, Texas kolaches are far from healthy they’re totally worth it.
We spent the evening in Austin sharing dinner with friends, old and new. The next morning we grabbed a bite with Becky Murphy of Chipper Things (who you definitely need to be reading / following) and nerded out together over all the TED talks we had been listening to on the way down. Oh! And on the way to brunch I found my dream house – a hobbit looking fairy tale abode that happened to be directly across the street from an old victorian house that Elijah Wood owns (f’reals). Oh! And I saw a man walking a pig. So … the day was starting out pretty promising. We hit up IKEA on the way home and stocked up on tea light candles and decorative throw pillows. We made it home just in time to make dinner and catch our favorite Sunday night shows.
Kolaches, friends, hobbit houses, pigs on leashes, and Swedish shopping aside, it was so nice to hit the road. Only driving at 70MPH was I finally able to slow down.
P.S. These photos are from my Instagram feed. You can follow me over there right here.
Yesterday morning I was waiting in the chiropractors office trying to not to cry. But you know how sometimes holding it back feels more like an invitation for tears to make their way down your face, past your chin, and down into the cleavage you never had until just a few months ago? Yeah. So that happened. I got out my iPhone and looked at my calendar to figure out a more appropriate time in my schedule for a self-indulgent melt down but I was already booked solid. So … the chiropractors office would have to do.
I tried to pull out all the tricks. I excused myself to the bathroom, stared myself down in the mirror, and told myself to get my act together. I pinched the fleshy space between my pointer finger and my thumb. I made a mental list of things I was grateful for. I asked myself “what’s the actual problem here?” Which made me even more upset – because really nothing, other than the minor inconvenience of having to take my brand new car to the shop, was really wrong. That’s when I had the thought “Maybe I’m crazy.” Or maybe I’m just pregnant and a surge of hormones + a nice dose of “OMG. A baby! In just two months!” got the best of me.
And I think that’s the case. Because this morning I woke up feeling a lot lighter. Baby boy was jumping around in my belly, which was cuddling up against Jeremy’s, and I got a nice dose of “OMG! A baby! In just two months!” but instead of feeling completely overwhelming it felt completely … complete.
Field Notes & Other Observations
• I’ve started Hypnobirthing classes with my doula to prep for the actual labor & delivery of this kiddo. It’s all about birthing without fear and going into a relaxed and meditative state while your laboring so your uterus can do it’s thing. We’ve been given 20 minute guided meditations to listen to daily. Without fail I tend to fall asleep 5 minutes in. Maybe I’ll just sleep through my delivery? Heh.
• Now that I’m really showing, I’m surprised that nobody ever offers to let me cut in the bathroom line. Maybe I never realized before I was pregnant how dire a knocked up lady in a bathroom line can be.
• The baby has moved positions. He was head down with his back going up along my left side for a few weeks. Now I suspect he’s breech with his head up in my ribs, body down my right side, and legs kicking me straight in the hoo-ha.
• I had the best maternity shoot with my friend Misty Bradley this last weekend in the Wichita Mountains. I maybe almost got arrested posing half naked in a field of buffalo. So … can’t wait to share those photos! (Sneak peek here).
Anatomy of an Outfit:
T-shirt – American Apparel (Jeremy’s)
Bralette – Target
Pants – A Pea in the Pod (Maternity)
Boots – Fiorentini + Baker
Necklace – Shop Good (this pretty much hasn’t left my neck since I became pregnant. Now I like to think it’s charged with lots of good energy for the baby.)
I’m sure you got the message to just “be yourself” from your mom at a very young age. Now the message of “be authentic” and “be real” is the rallying cry of creatives and bloggers everywhere. But what does that really mean?
In my one-on-one coaching for creatives sessions I’ve had the pleasure of talking to very real, very authentic live-what-you-love dreamers and doers. But they’re afraid. They claim to be scared of putting their most real and authentic selves out there. But my hunch is that’s not what they’re afraid of at all. When you really know who your are and where you stand you most likely have the kind of confidence it takes to put yourself out there.
Being who you are isn’t scary.
But exploring who you are supposed to be is an act of courage.
Then add to that the age old question of “who am I?” and you run the risk of becoming a self-doubting and second-guessing hot mess.
Being who you are is:
• Owning your experience
• Sharing your stories
• Being an authority of your self
• Giving others permission to love (or hate) you
• But either way, standing firm in your beliefs
• Making claim to things you like
Exploring who are you supposed to be is:
• Knowing you don’t have all the answers (and that’s okay)
• Getting specific about what you want
• Asking “what if…”
• Embracing change
• Taking action on new ideas
• Trusting your gut
Writing & blogging is a really great tool to not only capture who you are but to shape and share who you are becoming. When you can be who you are and live out loud you can more quickly manifest who you are supposed to become. You will not only inspire but you will be inspiring – simply by, just like mom told you … being yourself.
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P.S. If you like this post you might like my DIY Coaching for Creatives Email Sessions. It’s 4 emails x 4 weeks (16 emails total) for just $40. Complete with worksheets, exercises, mantras, meditations, and to-dos for time management, decision-making, and strategies for living more of what you love – in work and life. You can learn more about what you’ll get and purchase anytime here.
Jeremy and I rarely say “I love you” out loud to one another. The words themselves are said maybe twice a year. And when we do say “I love you” it’s not super dramatic or even romantic. In fact, it’s usually during random moments where life in general is feeling really damn good – and we’re just so grateful to be on the ride together.
So, life lately has been busy. I would say wildly productive but if I’m being completely honest between tight client deadlines, midwife appointments & birthing classes, physical therapy, workouts, grad school and a thesis, a teaching stint at a local university, plus time for family and friends, Jeremy and I are both feeling a little spread thin. Oh, and then there’s the whole emotional (and literal) weight and uncertainty of adding a baby to the mix in two short months. A check engine light, the constant reminder to update my operating system, and a frustrating “conversation” with a customer service robot who doesn’t seem to understand what I’m saying (yeah, I’m talking to you Paypal) is enough to make me lose my composure altogether. And this kind of shit-losing-over-nothing-and-everything-all-at-once kind of vulnerability is reserved for pretty much Jeremy’s eyes only. And yet, he still loves me. Even when robots hurt my feelings and send me into fits of irrational tears.
But Jeremy doesn’t reassure me by saying the words. Some days, “I love you” is a pint of salted caramel gelato in the freezer and an extra tight squeeze. And other days, nothing says “I love you” louder and makes my heart more full than opening the medicine cabinet to find a brand new head on my toothbrush.
How do you say “I love you” without saying “I love you”?
Over the past 6 months I’ve shared a lot about the insecurities and weirdness that comes with pregnancy. But I have to admit that at 30 weeks (3/4 of the way there!) I’m starting to get really excited about becoming a mom. MOM. It’s an identity I never truly thought would be my own. This transitional phase that is gestation often leaves me feeling uneasy, impatient, and between identities. But that said, I’m truly grateful for the time this pregnancy has allowed me, to grow into and embrace the new role of mom.
I was never sure if “mom” was a job I was cut out for. It was never my top ambition or priority in life … But now I can say with certainty that I’m going to be a good mom. I don’t believe that I was born with the calling to be a mom, but I can feel it in my bones (and belly) that I’m fully equipped and ready to be this kiddo’s momma. I’m also beginning to feel more secure that my role as “mom” will not strip away my identity as I know it or obliterate my drive to do things like run a business, share my stories (and help other people share theirs), climb walls, lift heavy things, and shake my booty from time to time.
So, I’m beginning to understand that things, like my desires and identity, will change with parenthood. They already have. And I’m so glad.
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Field Notes & Other Observations:
• The baby rolls and rumbles have become more pronounced kicks, jabs, and scrapes. In fact, sometimes I feel like my uterus is a pumpkin that the baby is trying to hollow out. It’s also crazy to watch. It really is like that scene from Alien.
• I would have never guessed that one of the more nagging pregnancy annoyances would be the bottoms of my new awesome boobies touching the top of my belly / ribs. It’s sticky, sweaty, and something this flat-chested girl has never experienced before now.
• People have started asking me if I’m rubbing oil on my belly (to avoid stretch marks, I assume). The answer is no… I haven’t. I’ve always been bad about moisturizing. But I have been dry brushing daily to help bring circulation to my skin.
• Sleeping has become increasingly uncomfortable. I wake up often in the middle of the night with a rock hard belly and mild overall discomfort in my abdomen. (The midwife says it may just be an “irritated uterus” from a full bladder, but that it’s really nothing to be concerned about.). Often, by the time morning rolls around I don’t even feel pregnant and could manage to sleep in if it weren’t for working and living life as normal.
• I’ve lost my appetite and can’t quite eat as much as normal. I’m going to assume this is because my stomach is in cramped quarters.
• BUT that said, I get pretty ravenous right before bed and often have to have a midnight snack of walnuts, raisins, and goji berries.
• I’m still working out 5-6 days a week. Even though some movements are becoming more difficult, I feel more confident working out now than I did in my first and second trimesters.
• I’m beginning to have very vivid dreams about the baby – in my dreams I’m madly in love with him but am always forgetting how to feed or diaper him.
Anatomy of an Outfit:
Shoes – Eastlands
Jeans – GAP (Jeremy’s)
Sweater – Obey (also Jeremy’s)
Tank – GAP (Maternity)