One Year Ago & Why I Am So Glad I Ran Through Pregnancy

Oh my goodness.  I blinked and a year went by.  One year ago on August 6th, little Mary Katherine came into our world.  We didn’t know what we were having and the moment we saw her our lives changed forever.   Then I told Rock that girls are super fun to buy clothes for (which is totally true!).

Mary has changed our lives in so many ways.  At first, I thought we would never sleep again.  Then she started smiling, and crawling, walking, and talking.  It really does get better!

I often hear people say that they didn’t realize how selfish they were before they had a child.  I have to disagree.  I believe that you are meant to enjoy time doing things for and learning about yourself.  The same is true that you need to spend time living with roommates, living on your own, and then living with a partner or spouse.  Each of those steps in life changes you and makes you appreciate the next one.

Before we had Mary, my husband and I could procrastinate all morning and then pop out of the house on a whim to go for a run.  It was fun.  There were times when we argued about the other’s pace, or loud breathing, or preferred routes.

When I was pregnant with Mary, I was the one whose pace slowed.  I was okay with it, but it changed the dynamics of our running.  Rock did his run and I did mine.  Sometimes we ran similar routes.  Sometimes we did our own thing.

I loved running while pregnant.  It of course kept me fit.  But I felt like it was a special one-on-one time that I had with my little one.  I didn’t want to over exert myself, so I used my conversation pace to keep things in check.  I would chat with our baby and tell them how excited I was to meet them and to someday go on runs in the stroller.

It was a time for me to prepare for what was to come.  However, even with the best preparation, you can’t really “prepare.”  Until you have your first child, you just never truly understand how much a baby will change your life.  I still have moments where I stop and think, “Holy crap.  This is 24/7.  This is all about Mary and we are just living in her world!”

Mary6

It is okay.  I love it!  It has been amazing watching this tiny little thing that was born almost a month early, grow into a big girl who is in the 90th percentile for her height.  First she was crawling and then suddenly she was walking.  She loves food and will eat just about anything you put in front of her, except for noodles.  She eats sushi (just vegetable rolls) and any fruit or vegetable.  I watched her eat 20+ blueberries at dinner last night!

Mary1

Recently, we have started using the jogging stroller for much more than walking to the grocery store.  We often coordinate one of her naps with a run in the stroller.  Remember those times that Rock and I would argue about pacing?  Running with a stroller slows you down.  And it is amazing!  It isn’t about the run.  It is about us being able to do something we love, and together again.  It’s about us doing something as a family.

From the moment Mary was born, I have continued to run.  Running through pregnancy allowed me to bounce back pretty quickly, and I am super grateful for that.  But what I am most grateful for is that for as long as our little girl will remember, her parents ran because they loved it.  They workout because they love being healthy and they do it together.  While I may never be able to fully shelter Mary from the social stigmas of  “perfect bodies,” what I hope that I can do is show her how a healthy relationship between food, exercise, and how we perceive ourselves can truly work.

This has been the best, most exhausting, and rewarding year of my life.  Happy Birthday Mary.  Thank you for teaching me so many lessons that you never realized you ever possibly could.  As I said when you were born, I am so thrilled to be known forever as “Mary’s mom.”

Mary5

12 thoughts on “One Year Ago & Why I Am So Glad I Ran Through Pregnancy

  1. Happy Birthday Mary! Has it really been a year???
    I really hope that I wil be able to stay active throughout pregnancy. Well, I really hope that I will have the opportunity to try!

  2. Happy birthday – I still look at the first birthday pictures from our two college age goons and am amazed at how the time went by so fast!

    “I often hear people say that they didn’t realize how selfish they were before they had a child.”

    Ugh. Sorry, but those people really tick me off!

    I remember people (OK, somewhat my brother but mostly wife’s sister) who would constantly tell us things like “you don’t know what tired is …”, “you don’t know what busy is …”, “you don’t know what broke is …” and on and on.

    And it didn’t matter – when we had an apartment it was because we lacked a house, pets and kids. Then after the house it was pets and kids. Then because we got a cat first it was because we had the wrong type of pet (and still no kids). Then when we had ONE kid it was because we didn’t have two. Then we had two (by now it was just her sister), it was because they weren’t in school … then middle school … then high school … then driving … then college …. arrrrrrrrrrgggggggggghhhhhhhh!

    😀

    But while they were telling us what we ‘didn’t know’ after both having a child within a year of marriage (actually pretty much all of our extended families did this), we were spending the first 4+ years married just enjoying each other and building a life that makes us look forward to the ’empty nest’ we’ll have in a few weeks.

    You have a gorgeous little girl who is just growing up WAY too fast … enjoy it and enjoy all of your life – as a single person, married person, and parent. It is all part of who we are.

    • Thank you! I always look forward to reading your comments. What you say is so true. It isn’t being selfish. It is a time in your life. Each one changes. All of it is different and meant to be experienced when the timing is right. And we often have little day over that timing!

  3. I always knew you were going to be a great mother, and it makes me so happy to watch you, Rock, and Mary through parenthood. She’s a lucky lady. It continues to get better! You’ll be able to find more of yourself as she gets older. Love you guys!

  4. Pingback: You Can Be Like Fine Wine & Stinky Cheese | Running On Healthy

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