What has been your favourite thing about being pregnant this time around?
My favourite thing about being pregnant this time is that I have finally learnt once and for all to let go of any expectation of myself and go with the flow more rather than push myself to be doing what I think is “right”. Every pregnancy (and I’ve had a few now!) is totally different! I had plans of sticking with my healthy diet and literally could not keep a thing down until after 20 weeks other than chocolate croissants! (I do not have a sweet tooth normally at all!!) I am a regular, avid exerciser and was not able to do any activities again until 20 weeks as I am classed as high risk due to age and some recent history .. and then it was just too hot and/or I was too tired and that’s ok … I’ve watched my body amazingly grow this beautiful little baby of ours and appreciated the miracle and not berate myself for what I feel I couldn’t do this time around because I know I’ve got plenty of time afterwards to heal and recover. I’ve learnt it’s also to say ‘no’ or not feel guilty that I haven’t had the extra energy to put into other things and that true family and friends completely understand and continue to support you. It’s been a nice change to disconnect and not feel as pressured, to just concentrate on making this baby and my family. As a result, I’m 39 weeks and feeling extremely heavy and tired ~ normal late pregnancy feels that I am super blessed at this stage to have! My Dr has been my mentor throughout this journey as it hasn’t been the “easiest” and one thing amongst many of her pearls of wisdom was to “simplify everything and concentrate on the most important project you have ~ your baby growing inside you”. And honestly for me I love the feeling of movement and kicking even though it’s getting pretty strong now it hurts!
What is your number 1 tip for nourishing you and your baby?
Once you are past your first baby it becomes trickier to find time to nourish yourself and your little one when you are running around after the rest of your family (husband plus three boys Tom 18, Sam 17 and Archie 3), working etc but in all honestly it becomes even more important so I tried to concentrate on little simple things that are easy to do, not necessarily daily but regularly from home if it was “one of those days/weeks”. For me, I made the time to start reading every night even if it was just one chapter and of course your read over your cards, especially for the moments I was struggling and needed an extra shot of inspiration! A cup of your favourite tea or a coffee either with a close friend or on your own. Organic products for face and body. Lighting candles and having a fresh bunch of flowers around the house. A full body massage or treatment a couple of times during the pregnancy and keeping up with regular hair/beauty appointments as they really make you FEEL like a million dollars again when you aren’t feeling great at all! One of my biggest saviours for the first half of the pregnancy was lots of beach time with my family it felt so good to be submerged in or by the salt water splashing around with those I love the most! I would also recommend a nightly leg and foot massage from your husband once you sit down together at the end of long, busy days ~ BLISS!
Which of our cards speaks to you the most and why?
"Being pregnant over 40 in general is not for the faint hearted! This is actually my 7th pregnancy. The fourth within the past 18 months. I lost three precious souls literally between my 42nd and 43rd birthdays. The first was a big enough shock as I fell very blessedly easily with my three boys and had no complications other than I don't labour and need Caesars but you get to a point with that too that as long as your baby arrives safely in the world it doesn't matter 'how'. Don't get me wrong I was already so grateful for those gifts and even though I had never experienced the level of heartbreak I have now I was certainly empathetic to other women's struggles in their quest to have a child of their own. All three were at different stages and a different experience of loss. By the last time, during my 43rd birthday week I walked out of Sydney Ultrasound broken in a million pieces - my body was a mess hormonally and otherwise, mentally I was a wreck from so much stress on every level (there were other personal issues going on too) and my heart had been smashed to smithereens like I was In a permanent state of raw, vulnerable grief. I took the advice of the professional, amazing people who had been looking after us "this is the hardest thing to do, you need to get yourself in a place mentally where you can cope with anything .. nothing you are doing is wrong, not the intense exercise not anything but try intense meditation and you will get to a point where you can't take anymore of this or you will have a new baby in your arms". I listened to them and the bottom of my heart and soul. I remembered who I am and what I am made of and that I didn't want to look back and I wish I had tried just one more time .. I didn't listen to the negativity said to my face (and behind my bank) by close family and friends - this was my journey, life path. I focused just on this quest and my family - it's all I had energy for .. I saw a naturopath, had Bowen therapy and reiki, took up yoga (which I ended up obsessed by), I did Pilates as much as I could and still went running and boxing without smashing myself doing so. I thought I ate healthily but I did a stricter clean eating 8 week program and lost a bit of the weight the pregnancies and hormones had left behind! Six months later I felt amazing, stronger than I had ever been and I fell pregnant again! The fragility and vulnerability set in .. on top of that I was so sick from day one, I couldn't exercise, I couldn't eat .. then we lost my beautiful Grandma (Nonna) I have the most special relationship for my whole existence and my no 1 fan especially when it came to "trying again. The grief again hit like torrential waves I was sure I would lose this precious life inside me - we hadn't even gotten to the "safe" mark yet - though I wondered if I would ever feel safe during pregnancy again .., this is where your entire box of cards comes in .. they are so powerful and resonated with me on so many levels .. not just one card but the whole box, it was like a little meditation session especially when the fear that sits permanently, lingering would get out of control and I needed some calm .. they are soothing, comforting, strengthening and inspiring. They reinforce our relinquished trust in natures most incredible, powerful force - recreating life. To trust in our own power and bodies and know that we have the strength to endure anything to keep and protect our babies safe. They don't call Nature a Mother for nothing - the storms, rainbows, sunshine, turmoil .. the beginnings and the ends all magically beautiful in their own right. All seeds for the most incredible growth and change - the real meaning of life.At 26 weeks I relaxed. I embraced everything about this little miracle growing so happily and well inside my body .. I am as I said relishing in the feeling of life inside me again (must be a boy can kick!) and cannot wait to look into their eyes in just over 3 weeks!! Thank you for being such a big part of this incredible journey of love."
What are your plans for your birth?
This will be my fourth caesarean! I am currently packing my hospital bag and trying to include some calming, organic products for myself and baby to use (as I said it really is the little things that make us feel the best!) ~ I am hoping to arrive at the hospital feeling relaxed, calm and not too exhausted so I can feel soak up those first few days in the newborn bubble and not miss a thing!
What are you most excited about when baby arrives?
Just to hold this beautiful, healthy little baby of ours earth side in my arms and fall in love all over again! To know I will have finally completed my precious family. The last two years has been a very long and challenging journey on all levels to get to this place right now ~ emotionally, physically and mentally so it feels even more significant than ever ~ I’m just really looking forward to enjoying our family in every way. I cannot wait to start getting to know our new little addition and finding out whether I will be the Mum of four boys or a little girl, either way it will be the most wonderful surprise as it really doesn’t matter as long as they are healthy which is why we chose not to find out ~ the love for your own child is like no other! A friend said to me a few years ago that there aren’t many surprises left in the world of this calibre and it’s so true!