Wednesday, July 28, 2010

More precious than gold

I keep meaning to blog about my latest doula effort, but at my follow up meeting with the new little family they passed me a letter of reference that, really, says more about the experience than I ever could. Yes, they paid me cash, but I feel so much richer in so many other ways because of attending this beautiful birth. This was a hypnobirth, a fast birth, a stunningly beautiful, healthy, normal birth. Their words:

(edited for names, etc.)

A short time before the arrival of our second child, we decided we wanted a doula. Time was short (three weeks until the due date), and we quickly interviewed a few ladies whose names were given to us. Ms. Caddywumpus (ok, guys, they didn't really write that, I changed it) was one of these.

We connected with her almost instantly and knew that she would be a great fit for us. We had no hesitation asking her to join us on this journey. It felt really good to have an extra support alongside us. This was our second baby and we wanted to do everything within our power to make this experience a more positive one. We felt like having a doula with us empowered us even further to be prepared for what was to come.

Now that we've had our daughter, we can say for sure that it was definitely worth it to have her there. It was helpful and affirming and positive in every way.

Ms. Wumpus brought a great mix of professional and personal touch to her support of us. She has an energetic and calming presence, is knowleable and willing to address any and all issues that arise, and was available at a moment's notice. We felt quite comfortable discussing anything with her. She possesses every quality needed to thrive as a doula and we would recommend her to anyone without hesitation.

Thank you so much for your part in welcoming our daughter. It was our pleasure to have you alongside us for this memorable and special experience.


It makes me teary to read it again.
Namaste, y'all.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Falling back in love

It's no secret that I hibernated this winter. The return to the pavement, free weights and generally not eating/drinking myself to near bursting every night has been slow, annoying and rather painful (only in the pycho sense, not physically, although six months sans yoga is starting to show).

On Saturday I did something that I've often scoffed at - a cleanse. Let me state, for the record, that I don't believe in crash diets, juice diets, magical "cleansing" of our bodies. Our bodies cleanse our systems every single day and I really don't believe for a moment that drinking nothing but lemon juice and cayenne pepper is going to magically rid you of gall stones.

All that said, I have employed the services of a holistic nutritionist, one that is educated, level headed and rational. And, yes, she recommended a liver cleanse and I'm doing it. WTF, you may say. But this cleanse is really nothing more than more conscious eating with a few added vitamins and herbs on the side. THAT I can wrap my head around.

What this cleanse means is a few things. No booze at all, no red meat, minimal caffeine (but not none!) lots and lots of bright, colourful veggies and fruit, whole grains, lots of water, more fibre and 30 minutes minimum of exercise a day (see? I told you it's totally rational). But it also means no eating past supper, as I have to take my vitamins on an empty stomach at least three hours after eating but before bed (oh, tricky!) and it means actually thinking about what I'm putting in to my body.

And after three days, I've fallen in love with delicious food again. My typical pitfalls have always been: lack of exercise and too many carbs (which means too few veggies). Nothing major, but taking this leap of faith and swallowing some milk thistle has put me back in touch with the lovely things that grow just up the road at the market garden.

Case in point, today I made the most stunning salad. Three kinds of lettuce plus new spinach, pumpkin seeds, avocado, fresh raspberries, cooked, cool quinoa and a mustard/maple dressing I made up yesterday.

Holy doodle, I'm in love.

This new love, of course, only marginally makes up for the seven mile run yesterday that should have been nine or the two pound weight GAIN this week. But, whatever. It's the small things everyday that matter more, right? Right?

As an aside, Ms. Jen P is doing what I wish I could and packing up her family to move to the farm. I'm proud of her, jealous of her, but mostly, I'm sad she's moving an entire province farther away. Good thing my in-laws live 10 minutes up the road, Jen, or I'd be pissed at you.

Go on over to her blog and wish her a fond farewell and happy move, won't you?

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Plugged ear of exertion

If Steve in a Speedo can have a vein of approval, then I can have a plugged ear of exertion.
I've noticed, from time to time, that my left ear gets plugged/poppy and annoying when I'm working out particularly hard. Usually that means during track workouts or a tempo run (yes, I've actually been doing both), and sometimes it happens just during a regular old run. It's how I know I'm actually getting the blood pumping. It's how I know I'm nearly spent. It's usually accompanied by me talking myself into just finishing another few minutes because at this point I want to quit.

Today (and this is me climbing back on the wagon) I ran 8 miles. Sure, I should probably have done this weeks ago, seeing as my half marathon is a measly 8 weeks away, but whatever. Life has no rewind button, so it's onward and upward from here, OK?

It wasn't a hard run, really. I wanted to average 10:15 to 10:30 minute miles and by mile 3 had to tell myself to slow it down (I ended up averaging 10:14 and felt strong until the last .5 miles. go me!).

A few things I thought about during this run:
- 8 miles used to seem forever. Now I loop around until I get it done and it's no biggie. Maybe this is a sign that my fitness is slowly improving again.
- iPods really do read minds (this isn't news, but I did think about it)
- Black cats in tall grass look a lot like skunks
- That realization can make you run REALLY fast up an embankment
- Shade and flat ground makes the first 4 miles much easier
- Finding saskatoons on a run is always a bonus. At mile 7.5 out of 8 they're a bloody godsend

And finally
- I didn't get the plugged ear of exertion until 7.6 miles in to my run.

Woot woot!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Toy butter, dragons and Afghan food

Things I never thought I'd say but have now, in all seriousness, simply because I am so blessed to be a mother:

"Butter is not a toy."

"No, we don't put dragons in our vagina."
"Or our bums."

"We don't touch poop. We stomp on it."

"Don't drink from the dog's dish." SIGH. "Whatever. Go ahead."

Everything is now "special" in order to appeal to Chou. "Here's your special dinner!" "Mummy bought you special panties!" "Here's your special chair!" Why is everything an exclamation! Because it's special!

I am so tired of special.

Oh, and the Afghan food? I'd never had any until tonight. It's amazing. As is the tea. It's too bad the country is essential a crater that people fight over or I'd want to go visit.

Next blog: How I managed to climb back on the wagon. To which I am clinging to for dear life, but still, I'm on there.