Friday, August 07, 2009

Gratitude and Self-Analyzation (again)

It's been nine days, and I feel as if #5 has been a part of our family for decades. Without effort, he's become immersed in the routine; he fits perfectly.

And our routine, dear reader, is as busy as ever.

Super long story short: My kids have been taking private swimming lessons this week from my SIL's mother at her home starting at 8:15AM (they are 15 minute private lessons). This means every morning, I have been up by 7AM (regardless of the previous night of nursing), showered and dressed, with the kids ready for swimming and out the door by 8AM.

Irony? I'm LOVING it.

I'm a morning person by nature --yes, I know, it's not fair, and it's weird, etc. --and so being up at out of the house by 8AM feels amazing. And having a shower every day? Holy cow, it feels fabulous--I may have to do it every day!
Don't tell.

Now, of course, I could not have done this without a part of my life I have tried so hard not to feel guilty about: my easy recovery from childbirth. Oh, and a good baby. See, all five of my children have been good nursers and sleepers. All five childbirth recoveries have been good --in fact, each one has progressively gone faster and gotten easier.

Why the guilt: I know this is not really fair all around. Childbirth itself is not cake for everyone, and many have complications --not to mention the recovery period. Most women have at least one colicky baby --I have never had one. Most women find the adjustment difficult, and just the idea of waking up by 7AM and showering, let alone taking all five kids to swimming lessons thereafter, is absurd and/or terrifying or in the very least, not even plausible. And I get that. I do. I know it's not the same for everyone. Or easy for everyone. Nor do I believe it should be. Although I would love to grant the easiness of this to every woman... although that might defeat the whole "every one's trials are different" thing, seeing as we're supposed to learn from our trials and all that jazz and whatnot...but anyway, you know what I mean, right?

So, I have some guilt. Just enough to realize I'm amazingly blessed/lucky, though. Frankly, dear reader, my gratitude knows no bounds. But at the same time, I'm not going to let the guilt stop me from continuing to enjoy this new stage of my life. In fact, here's a list of some things I've been able to do in the last nine days since giving birth:
*The swimming lessons thing
*Going to the store (with just 3 of the kids, though)
*Walking to the school/park with the kids (and walking back)
*Going to Enrichment last night
*Doing 6 loads of laundry/dishes each day/sweeping/bathrooms/floors/blah/etc.
*Helping Brandon clean the laundry room and install our h/e washer/dryer set that has been sitting in our carport for over a year
*All that other stuff I have to do every day (nursing, diapers, kids, meals, etc.).

Although, meals have been brought in every day this week, and holy cow, has that been awesome!

OOH! Which reminds me! I think most of this easy recovery is due to the fact that I had been so healthy when I got pregnant, and then continued to stay active, eat well, and drink a lot of water (although I know other factors weighed into it). In fact, instead of staring down 40 pounds to lose, it's less than 20 now. I'm so happy about this...!

Anyway, my conclusion is thus --oh, wait. I have no conclusion. I'm just happy and grateful things are going well.

P.S. Apologies to those of you who have to wait forever for me to reply to Facebook, email, and blogging messages. This is the one part of my life I haven't been able to squeeze back in --at least not in the way I would like to. I know I shouldn't have to apologize for it, but I am very much like Elizabeth Bennett, you know --I can't stand the thought of my friends out in the world thinking ill of me. It's true! Thus that Plato quote up there on the right --you know up there on my sidebar? I have it there for me, dear reader...


FoxyJ said...

I sometimes play the 'comparison' game in my head, trying to balance the hard things in my life with the hard things in others. Like my husband works at home and doesn't travel for work. We eat every meal together as a family, every day. He's always here when I need him. Sometimes I do feel some guilt about this too, because I know other people don't have it that way. But I also have really bad birth/recovery experiences. I'm already making arrangments with people to be here for the first few weeks because I know I'll barely be able to get out of bed.

I don't think it neccessarily 'evens out' or that we should compare ourselves, but I do think we should feel gratitude and not guilt over the good things in our lives. It's hard sometimes not to feel that way though when others don't have the same things we do.

PS--My mom had five kids very close together, and all at home unmedicated just for the ease of recovery. As a kid I really liked it because our lives were hardly disrupted by her having a baby.

Annette Lyon said...

I'm so glad things are going so well. I know you've had your hard times--I don't begrudge your having an up time one bit! (Although me and mornings will never be friends. Just sayin')

Laura said...

Cheryl! That is awesome that you are able to get up early every day and shower and function! ... and with 5!!!! I struggle with just one. But it's good to hear that you can do gives me reassurance that I can do it with two. I've been a lazy bum in my last trimester... (I blame it on this Houston heat and humidity that makes it feel like it's 108 degrees outside and you never stop sweating PLUS being pregnant on top of that) ... it is pure torture. Every once in a while I just need a little motivation, so thanks for your post, it helps me feel like I can make it! :)

Gio, Judi and Boys said...

I am so glad that you are doing well. You neve cease to amaze me! Now I really do wish I had gone to enrichment night so I could have seen you! I will stop by to visit. Maybe next week after our San Diego trip!
Be glad for the good times and enjoy them!

m_and_m said...

No guilt, I say. Gratitude is good. I'm one of those who has had hard recoveries, and I think it's awesome that you don't. I want to say you deserve it, but I suppose there are others who do and don't get it so easy.

But I do think that this is all a blessing, and thus, gratitude is great. And I'm so glad that you are being blessed for these choices. You know how I feel about that...about your faith in having children when sometimes people/the world/the culture around us wants to say that you are crazy.

Love you.

Julie said...

It's always been fairly easy for me, too. I feel guilty until they turn three an then it all comes full circle. :)

Amanda D said...

There is certainly nothing for you to feel guilty about. You did what you needed to do and now you are reaping the benefits.

I'm glad to hear that things are going so smoothly. Enjoy your weekend!

Alison Wonderland said...

I'm so glad that things are going so well for you and I absolutely hope that they continue to do so, but if they don't... well, be ok with that too, ok?

I really don't meant to be such a downer but this post reminds me so much of how I feel sometimes when I'm on a big upswing. But for me it inevitably swings back a week or so later. That used to bug me but now I try to go with an "enjoy it while you can" kind of attitude. So, enjoy it while, well you know.

Susan M said...

You go, girl!