This picture was taken the day before I packed up my car and moved to the other end of the continent – for the second time in my life. I remember telling my mum to “think of it like 24 weeks“, 2 semesters at grad school in Vancouver, then I’d be back home.
4 years, an interesting job opportunity – actually, 3 of them, and now with a husband and baby on the way (well, the husband is already here… ) I’m sitting in our living room, staring out at our unobstructed view of the mountains and inlet, missing my mum as much as I did the day that I moved. Probably more.
Sunday was Mother’s Day in North America
. I’m going to use this week’s post to list some of the memorable reasons why my mum is the coolest, strongest, most amazing woman that I know; and if our daughter has a good mum, it’s 100% thanks to what I learned from mummy.
1) passion for learning and love of reading.
My mum taught me to read when I was 2 years old – she made flashcards out of construction paper, sat on a big chair in our family room with my while I worked my way through “who wants duck feet
“, and protected me from my possessed Speak n’ Spell
(seriously, the thing had evil running through it… We could take the plug out, remove all the batteries hide it in the closet and it would still wake me up late at night demanding that I Spell “View”. She set an amazing foundation for learning and exploring. Thank you mum
2) love of being active. When I was a little girl, my mum was a square dancer and aqua-fit teacher; she became a certified aerobics instructor, teaching step aerobics (among other classes) when she was in her 40s, came with me (drove me, actually!) to line dancing classes in her 50s, and continues to be physically active on a daily basis. Thanks to my mums example, I danced competitively for over 15 years, was a lifeguard, rowed for my university, and have ran several marathons and other long-distance races. I’m a healthier, happier person because my mum instilled the priority of being active in me at an early age, and our daughter will certainly benefit from that. Thank you mum!
3) love of volunteering.
My mum was a volunteer with Girl Guides
in England and Canada for over 30 years, making an irreplaceable difference in the lives of, literally, thousands of young women – many of whom she saw at least two generations of as they moved through the Sparks, Brownies or Guides groups she led. She was a volunteer for the YMCA
long before she was a staff member (which she still is now), and is a lifelong volunteer and active member of her Church
. Thanks to my mum’s example, I continue to volunteer
and our daughter will be encouraged to give back to her community with her time as well. Thank you mum
4) strength and compassion. This one will be tough to write… My mum hasn’t had things always go very easy, or as planned. Her entire family is in England, and Canada was only supposed to be a “2 year stopover” for a job opportunity for my dad. Almost 40 years later, they’re still here (sound familiar?). But that’s just the beginning. We lost my brother to a car accident when he was only 27 – and I was 9. After suffering, literally, the worst thing that can happen to a parent, she still woke up the next day to be a little girl’s mummy. How is that even possible? As years have passed, she has also lost her younger brother and sister long before “their time” (whatever that means) yet she remains joyful, with intense love. She has supported her children through broken hearts and broken bones, remaining encouraging and optimistic. She’ll say it’s because she’s English, and that’s what you do. I say it’s because she’s incredible. If I can be a strong and supportive mother for my little girl – even if she decides to move 3,500 miles away one day (or twice). It’s because I learned to be that way from my mum. Thank you mum!
5) commitment to family and tradition. Regular visits, regular emails and calls, crafts and meals together, talking with each other about how things really are and having absolutely no doubt when someone is hiding something. Board games, variety shows, quality time. My mum gets family. My parents house was – and remains – a place where my friends felt safe and comfortable visiting, sleeping over at, and even running away to. My mum is always welcoming, genuinely interested in the lives of my friends and I, and Everyone loves her. If I can have a home where our daughter feels comfortable welcoming friends who will feel like they are part of the family, it’s because I learned from my mum. Thank you mum!’
And theres more… of course there’s more. And there will be much, much more as my mother welcomes her seventh (!) grandchild into the world this summer. She can’t wait to meet you, mummy! She’ll love you. Just like I do – not just on Mother’s Day, but every day.
Dressing at 29 weeks
Check out this
fun little shift dress (if you can get past the sight of that bely button. holy cow – the thing has a life of it’s own. You should see it when I laugh or cough – it’s like the panic button in an underground chamber at the white house!). I wore this fantastic little dress to Church and out to lunch on Sunday. It’s a fabulous neutral that i’ll be able to wear post-baby and well into the fall, supur soft, stretchy and breathable, with a little bump definition. I still have yet to invest in (or even try on) a pregnancy body-shaper. When I see pictures like this, I wish I had. Part of the wonderfulness of well-designed maternity clothes is that they stretch with you and offer body definition (as opposed to relegating oneself to 9 months in a cotton muu muu); however, that comfort and flexibility of clothes designed to stretch with you and bounce back into shape (as you we do!) comes with the definite clinginess to All those curves. and I can’t help but note that mine could use a little extra-control under those lovely, conforming textures. Okay – i’ve only talked about it for about a month, but this week I WILL get a body shaper to try under my next dress!
life at 29 weeks.
baby size: a 15-16 inch, three pound (or so) squash.
mummy size: 5 foot 11.5 and 174 pounds. It was 1/2 price frappuccino week at starbucks last week. Need I say more?
changes: I definitely feel lots of hiccups, kicks, and (as of tonight) have started saying “yikes – baby on bladder! baby on bladder!”
what else: no crib yet. more and more people are saying “if she comes early, and sleeps in the car seat for the first night or 2, she won’t mind”. I’m starting to buy into that a bit. Also, tomorrow this little bump will be making it’s third appearance on TV in the last month or so. I’ll try to post it after it’s up!
next week’s post: continuing group prenatal classes and fun questions from Ken – hurray!