Back to You

by Susie Cortright

The stick looked innocent enough. So did those purplish lines - straight up and down, but ragged around the edges, which pretty well describes how I feel these days. I've got my feet on the ground, and my shoulders are square, but my mind isn't always focused. 

It was around 4 am, just me and my EPT. I was thrilled with the positive results (we have been "trying"), but the prospect of my first early-morning work session without caffeine prevented me from showing it. I shuffled into the kitchen where, instead of brewing a pot of coffee, which I usually slug myself before the rest of the family wakes, I poured a glass of ice water. I'm pretty sure I dozed off just waiting for the computer to boot up. Later that day, I had to pull over on the side of the road to take a nap. It was two in the afternoon. 

I can no longer rely on my mid-morning adrenaline surge, either. I'm not running anymore. (Turns out, my obstetrician prefers his pregnant patients to take long walks - not long jogs - at 10,800 feet elevation.) 

So, instead of relying on my usual energy boosts, I have had to take my own Momscape advice and focus on taking better care of myself. In my case, that means getting more sleep. 

Now, instead of relying on a 4 am alarm, I wake to my daughter cooing "Mommy" from her bed. When it's naptime, we tuck in together to read stories, and she often outlasts me. More than once have I awoken to her lying across my chest, flipping through the storybook I had drifted off while reading. 

As I've focused on getting more sleep, my body has begun to tell me what it needs. More water, 15 minutes with my feet up, a night out - all by myself. 

I once worked for a doctor who would marvel at how we will focus on caring for ourselves when it has a direct effect on our child's health (during pregnancy and breastfeeding). The rest of the time, we rush through life shifting from a caffeine buzz to an adrenaline high and back again. 

But when we take care of ourselves, we are better able to take care of everyone else. And so, as I put my growing family first, I will do my best to keep up. If you notice an occasional late newsletter delivery, a delay in a reply to your email, or a slight change in our format from time to time, please know things here couldn't be better. Chances are, I'm just taking it easy with my babies. 

This week, spend some time discovering what gets in the way of tuning in to your physical, emotional, and spiritual needs. How could you make your own life better? Maybe it's adopting a more active lifestyle, making better nutrition choices, seeking out more positive friendships, or improving your ability to say "no". This week, sit still for a moment and let your body tell you.