I had a great response to my first blog post about my experiences as a woman expecting her first child. I read the comments with interest and was relieved that it wasn't just me feeling this way most of the time. Knowing it's not just you is a big part of keeping your sanity I've noticed during pregnancy.
I've given up with maternity wear (it's a myth and only comes out at full moons FYI), most parenting books just leave me more confused or annoyed and I have yet to decide on a more appropriate response to belly rubbing than just plain 'GET OFF!' I'm not even sure I want to?
But I'm loving a few things and I thought I'd share them as I wish in a way I'd found them without being pregnant. They've reminded me of life's pleasures and maybe they will you too.
With all the medical intensity I've had along the way, I knew I wanted something for me; an hour in my week that no one could interrupt and would help me prepare for the birth and beyond. I tried a class. It was awful and I despaired. I left feeling dejected and a failure that I didn't have the option of birthing in a pool and instead would have to give birth in a ward with strip lighting and a medical team on hand at all times.
Then I found Yogita London and my teacher Jen who quite frankly I would propose to if she wasn't already spoken for. She is calm and soothing without being patronising and she doesn't cross the line into crappy gender stereotypes EVER. I'm not lectured and made to feel I have to have a natural birth. I feel empowered to make the decisions I have to make and use her strategies to help me and my giant (who she thoughtfully included in a session) prepare for the birth and beyond.
I wish I'd been doing Yoga forever too. I'm not very good at relaxing. Spa's and meditation classes and all those other forms of relaxation make me immediately tense. I'd rather spend a weekend moutain biking than slipping around in dressing gowns as relaxation. At last, I've found someone who can help me focus and be calm. Amazing.
Ok, they were always there but I admit, I've tended towards the company of men or 1:1 female friendships rather than large female groups. I grew up with the boy next door and was tall and sporty so I always felt out of place with groups of women talking about magazines or fashion. I'd feel lost and out of depth with most women and even now have a select group of women I love and adore because they are fiesty and intelligent and we talk about politics, boobs and new books. Since announcing that I was expecting though I've been in awe of other mother's generosity: clothes, equipment, books, information and gentle encouragement. This from women I may have shied away from previously. I'm realising the shared female experience is an incredibly strong thing.
So there's my rays of sunshine. There are others like my ever playful baby, kicking and experimenting while I'm trying to concentrate on some writing or editing. It's been fun and the word seems to be spreading not to touch THAT pregnant lady's belly, lest she bite you......