Despite having basically no income (I'm at the bottom of the barrel of student loan money), I made some investments in my pregnancy that are probably pretty necessary, somewhat out of fear. Eh. Sometimes it's a good motivator- when you see yourself moving quickly towards an unattractive demise (i.e. a midwife chastising you for gaining too much weight for the second time, a second degree tear, a nearly nine pound baby, and severe diastasis), the best thing to do is turn around FAST in the other direction.
First, I purchased one of the lovely books that Juliette de Bairacli Levy, the famed Gypsy herbalist that has had such a profound influence on other healers I've come to love, called Nature's Children. I had to buy it after peeking inside it on Amazon late last night and reading her wisdom on pregnancy and motherhood. It's simple. A family is only as healthy as the mother. She shares beautifully from her experience instead of theory her thoughts that a robust pregnancy, one where the mother stays physically active and alive, sleeps well, eats well, breathes fresh air and spends most of her time outdoors (such as the nomads she lived and birthed with) leads to a quick, often painless birth, as well as babies who are healthy and robust themselves.
Here she is with her Afghan hound, the breed she always kept by her side.
Ah, a breath of fresh air! What a philosophy to get behind. So simple, yet so removed from the lifestyle I've adapted even up here in the Black Hills, overwintering, sometimes over-eating, and generally loafing around.
So this morning I was determined to get up and get real, but of course, I perceived obstacles. I'm not in the frame of mind quite yet to fully appreciate walks alone around the ranch (perhaps when I have more of my own projects going on, the garden growing, the chickens scratching around..) The biggest piece of Julliete's wisdom I've taken to heart, mainly because I can actually FEEL the effects of having not, is exercise. My 30-week belly has really been pulling me down lately, but I've let it. Earlier, my solution was GaiamTV and the prenatal videos they offer, but when I went to renew my lapsed subscription, I found that- NOO!!- they don't play the beloved prenatal yoga video I found myself going back to over and over again. While they have gobs of other amazing content (like recordings of my favorite spiritual teachers such as Michael Beckwith and Marianne Williamson, plus, um, Jillian Michaels), I knew what I wanted and I wanted it NOW.
And I am PICKY when it comes to fitness/yoga recording. Any slightly annoying inflection of a host's voice and I'm out. I wasn't sticking around on GaiamTV if they didn't have what I wanted, to I went back to Amazon and just bought it. Fuck it. I'm worth it (and so is this little one).
That said, I really can't say enough good things about Hala Khouri's Radiant Pregnancy. As a doula and childbirth educator, I think that her approach to the sacred nature of pregnancy is gentle and not patronizing, and allows plenty of space for a mama to feel her way through her own experience (which is what a good yoga teacher does anyway). Plus she's a generally bad-ass lady. Here she is:
Now, if you can't get behind that, I don't know what you're doing on my blog in the first place (just kidding! welcome!!). I'm generally attracted to down-to-earth, fearless people, so I'm excited for Friday, when Hala Khouri will show up in the mail. I'll let y'all know how I'm feeling in about a week. My guess is that things can only improve.
Until then, I'm going to get dressed, get outside, and go shovel aged cow manure into buckets for my compost pile! I think Juliette would be proud.