pregnancy pillow problems

this isn't really about my pregnancy pillow, which I borrowed from my sil because I strongly am trying not to invest in permanent pregnancy products right now. you know, seeing as I'm "advanced maternal age" and all this time around.

but it's about the 20 second rule. and don't ask me to remember what book it's from, but basically learning a new habit and establishing it you have a 20 second window that can either help get it consistent or squash it.

so if you want to watch less tv, you take out the batteries every time or put the remote in a far away place, so getting it started takes more than 1 second.

if you want to start a good habit you eliminate any obstacles that would take it longer to start, so laying out your exercise clothes for the gym in the morning, the night before. setting your package by the front door so you don't forget. etc.

I started the positive habit of making my bed every day that I wake up a few years ago. I love it. it makes me happy. I love seeing my room when my bed is made and I feel accomplished even if I actually don't get very much done in a day.

but lately my bed making has been stopped by the pregnancy pillow conundrum...

this pillow is a ginormous white u-shaped tube. it's amazing. it supports my belly and my back. it also is...huge. it creates a barrier between ty's body heat and mine. it also creates my own little cocoon. did I mention it is huge? it can't stay on the bed after it's made because, 1. it's huge duh and 2. it's weird looking. and it's heavy. that was number 3. and because it's heavy and I didn't find a place to put it, I stopped making my bed.

when I stopped making my bed every day it seemed ok because honestly, I'm going to nap later anyways, so why go through all of that work right? and it's heavy, don't forget. but because of that it stopped me from picking up around my room. and then it stopped me from caring about my bed and bedroom and it did cause me a lot of negative thoughts about how messy and yucky my room is.

so...20 seconds to fix this right? I decided I can take a few seconds and shove the pillow upright between my armoire and wall. and then make my bed and worry about nap time later. in all honestly it's probably stopped me from napping there, I just lie on the couch. and then my bed is made and I'm happy.

The extra 20 seconds it took to put away that blasted thing stopped me in my tracks. and it was such a simple solution. I do realize it takes less than 20 seconds to pick up the pillow and put it in it's "niche", but still...what a difference it makes to have it put away.  it takes 20 seconds to convince myself it's worth the effort, but that's par for course with about everything right now. "is it worth it to get up and use the bathroom? or should I just wait for when I have to go again in 10 minutes?" "is it worth making dinner tonight?" haha. the list goes on and on.

what do you want to stop doing or start doing? try the 20 second full and see if it works!

also, pregnancy pillows are amazing. here is the link for the one I'm "borrowing", (thanks Megan!)


pregnancy notes- 1st trimester

we now go to Cub Scout pack meetings, I know right? it came so quickly. and of course, Rodney loves it. last night at cub scouts I remarked that my friend's baby was spitting up, and an onlooker looked at my growing belly and asked, "are you ready for that again?" to which I happily and joyfully chirped the reply, "of course, why not?".

the energy in those questions and comments I receive now remind me SO MUCH of how I used to view pregnancy and newborns and toddlers and all the physically hard demanding parts of parenting. I saw everything negatively, as pressured, I was trapped, like it's a burden. maybe because I haven't had a screaming toddler for 5 years, or a baby in 8 years, or maybe because I haven't been pregnant over 12 weeks for 9 years, but I really don't feel that way anymore, and I'm not worried about it either.

I cannot express the joy, gratitude, peace and overwhelming peace this pregnancy has given me and blessed our home with since day one.

during the first trimester of this pregnancy I have been writing down all of my experiences and how different it is. I do believe some of it is because we've had such a long break, so a lot feels like the first time, but I also believe it's because of the positive mindset and tools I have in my emotional toolbox that help me stay centered calm and present.

For example:

WEEKS 2-8:
I always know when I'm pregnant pretty early, and this time was no exception. We had finally felt safe and secure enough to try again, and fully realizing it could take a long time to conceive again or never happen at all. I felt ok with all of it. I was a little surprised a week later when my boobs felt full on top and on bottom. That's always my first sign, regular boobage hurt before my period is just sore on top, not underneath. weird right? I also was tired already. For the first time in the history of my marriage, I did not take a pregnancy test until after my missed period. It was the strangest feeling, I knew I was pregnant and didn't feel like I needed a stick I put in my pee to tell me. I've never trusted my body like that before...ever. I always was taking the test at the earliest time possible, and plopping down $$ for the superdeeduperreliable test you can take 7 days before your period. This time I finally bought one after I missed my period just so I could show Ty. I think he knew already too without us talking. We were both surprised at the timing, "WHOAH, ok here we go" kind of feeling.

We also both quietly, and without communicating, were reserved and guarded.

I didn't want to get too excited. I didn't want to see the heartbeat or an ultrasound. I didn't want to make doctor appointments early, last year after my miscarriage I kept getting reminders for all of my pregnancy appointments and, bueno.

My whole goal this pregnancy is to trust my body and listen to it. I want to feel safe, secure and peaceful the entire time. For me that meant waiting to call to make an appointment until I was 8 weeks along.

Weeks 4-6 were just exhaustion. I drank a few more diet cokes than normal and started going to bed at around 9pm (sometimes 8:30!). My breasts started to feel full and tender, (very tender and very full) right away. I still felt fine around food etc, so it was pretty easy to keep to my normal schedule and it wasn't hard to pretend that I wasn't pregnant around the kids or anyone else.

Weeks 6-10 is when the nausea was full blown. It was exactly like my pregnancy with Rodney, just constant nausea but no puking. I had a hint it was another boy with this because the girls were constant upchuckage during these weeks.  When the nausea hit I was SO EXCITED.  I didn't realize last year that I wasn't really experiencing any real or solid pregnancy symptoms like this. Ty was so happy that I was sick, I was happy! It made my day to wake up and feel sick, I'm not joking.

As it's not my first rodeo, I knew right away I had to be prepared in the morning. I couldn't just get up, brush my teeth and meditate, pray etc. I would slowly get out of bed *so important, and walk straight to the bathroom. I would pop two prenatal gummy vitamins and slowly chew them. Some weeks I kept them by my bed so I could eat them before getting up. After that I always ate right away something with protein and carbs. My favorites were:

*greek non fat yogurt with cherries in it and some lakanto sugar on top.
*cottage cheese with red grapes and almonds
* slice of toast, buttered with jelly and scrambled eggs on top

After I ate I could start my regular morning routine. Another thing that helped with the nausea is my tongue scraper, I swear it helped keep a lot of the icky taste out of my mouth all day.

The best thing for nausea though? Was just accepting that I was nauseated. The only thing worse than feeling sick to your stomach is NOT wanting to feel sick to your stomach. I really think it affects you when you struggle against what I happening. I was able to stay centered and grateful my body was making extra hormones and taking care of baby just as it should, all I had to do was stay focused and calm. (somedays weren't so easy).

There were days when the heat started to hit, but luckily we had the most mild May and June. We had family come into town the end of June and we had 4 days in a row of swimming and travel and hiking in the heat. I finally had to tell my sister in law because it was frustrating how tired and cranky I was and just uninterested in staying up late. We still hadn't told anyone else though. I kept ginger chews in my purse, water and Diet Coke would help in the evening. Other than that, I felt puffy and squidgy but it wasn't noticeable to other people...yet.

Weeks 8-12

I had to eat around every 30 minutes a few bites of something to keep the nausea at baby. Week 8 I called the doctors office finally. The funny part when I called is she made my regular 10 week appointment with a nurse practitioner, and at 14 weeks I'd finally meet with the doctor. After I hung up I couldn't figure out why I was irritated. I finally realized it was because I've been "high risk" my last 4 pregnancies and had special treatment. Early appointments, blood tests, early ultrasounds, they would "squeeze" me in last minute all the time and hold my hand.

And here, after months and years of letting my ego go, letting the need to be special go, wanting and praying a healthy, regular pregnancy without special attention or needs...I'm finally having one ego missed a little bit of the attention. Isn't that funny? I laughed when I realized it.

Week 10-12 is when my pants were getting too tight, my hormones were full blown so I was constipated and gassy and cranky and going to bed at 8pm and sleeping in. Dinners were cereal, mcdonalds or frozen meals from the grocery store.  I think I drove into town once all summer for groceries. I was pretty much just stuck at home. I started to feel the duldrums of not wanting to travel or do anything fun plus constant nausea that made me worried. Luckily a good friend reminded me anyone would feel a little depressed after 2 months of feeling sick and tired. Bless her heart.

 Luckily it was summer time, but even the kids a few times were like, "why don't you wake up early anymore?" or "why don't you go outside anymore?".  Nice things about kids is that they are pretty selfish and self centered so they didn't notice too much how different I was. My hardest job was taking them swimming. We had all of these grand plans to take the to the Mesquite rec center fun pool and my mom and dad's pool all the time, but the heat. Oh...the heat. If I got too hot in the car just driving to the pool, the nausea was intense the rest of the day. So bless my kids' hearts, we maybe went swimming 5-6times? maybe?

I finally started taking unison and b6 at night around week 10 for the nausea. This helped tremendously for the next day. I took that until week 13 when I realized I was feeling better. What I did notice is that the unisom caused me to be more stuffy than normal (another early pregnancy sign for me is stuffy nose). And I mean, so stuffy I couldn't sleep. So getting rid of the unisom was awesome.

At week 12 I felt a little sigh of relief that things were going well. The 10 week appointment showed everything "textbook perfect" with a strong heartbeat and good ultrasound to check for twins. I could have SWORN my boobs were big enough already for twins. hehe.

I didn't feel out of the woods for surrendering that this was really happening, and still felt myself staying cautious and reserved. We still hadn't told the kids or anyone else. I did enjoy just Ty and I knowing another spirit was growing and coming to our family. It was a special time.

My meditation sessions totally stunk during this trimester. But...I still kept at them. I still showed up every day. I could see how my hormones made my thoughts go around like a plastic garbage back in a dirt devil. Just all over the place, kind of how they used to be before I started meditating. But I was patient and just accepted this is how it is.

For me, having a healthy pregnancy after two losses has been almost like surviving a plane crash. You're in the hospital, and a little wounded and a lot tired, but you just feel so grateful to be alive. You feel guilty complaining about anything because you know of all the other people who didn't make it through the crash. Who lost family members. You realize the odds of this miracle happening are pretty slim, so you just keep your mouth shut and count your blessings. Ty was most patient with my hormone fluctuations. He smelled HORRIBLE to me from week 6-12. I couldn't stand his breath or his touch around 75% of the time. He helped out a ton in the kitchen with food and groceries and dinner. He rubbed my feet and smiled and we both secretly hoped in our hearts we wouldn't have to experience a loss again, but also didn't want to get too excited about the baby.


you win some, you lose some...but it's all winning

the past few weeks have been full of amazing progress and super energy highs and just, well, awesomeness.

unfortunately those highs seem to have little companions following them around that bring a few days of lows.

I shouldn't say a few days, but I've started to really learn about progression. yes, I've read it in my self help books and even in the scriptures, we have cycles. we do really well, then we are humbled, then we choose again to refocus, then we do well and yada yada yada.

but knowing, and then living through it are two completely different things in my humble opinion.

I taught the largest meditation class I've ever taught in st. George a few weeks ago to 25 women. I was super nervous, as it's only been to small groups. I also knew the women there had been through extremely difficult life challenges. And I didn't know how well the message of meditation and mindfulness would be received.

lately I've had small hints that a LOT of women are ready to change their life. and not by a new diet, or new workout routine or by any other way other than tapping into the true source of power first...God. and the only way to reach that power is through your surrender and looking within.

and after my last two meditation classes (where I basically just tell my story and how meditation has changed my life) that small hint was confirmed. people (especially women) are READY.

  • women are tired of relying on drugs to sleep through the night, or even fall asleep.
  • tired of relying on medications to get us through the day, and stay sane (nothing wrong with meds, I am not anti-meds, I'm anti-using meds to numb instead of problem solve)
  • tired of numbing our emotions with food, exercise, drugs, drinking, prescription meds, tv, drama, gossip etc.
  • tired of feeling like there is more to life.
  • tired of just plain being tired.

I was humbled to share my small story and to teach a little about mindfulness and meditation. It felt amazing. I was inspired and more motivated to share and help others.

and then...the me monster will follow. you know, the less than, everyone is better than, don't try cuz you'll go crazy again kind of me monster? yeah...her.

I also realized that old feelings were being brought up to be felt and processed. really old feelings. and it's been really good to feel them, learn from them, and let them go. most of them have been super important for my parenting journey and gave huge insight into where I was holding on, where I needed to let go and where I needed to just plain change.

I also had a lot of triggers of the "should" laws that people are still passing around, especially about family. and yes, I'm going to share some of that here.

4 years ago when I began seeing a therapist for cognitive behavioral therapy, the negative messages I had in my head about "SHOULDS" and "SHOULD NOTS" were almost killing me. they are what had destroyed my mental sanity and kept me miserable for a very long time. much too long. with help from my therapist I began setting boundaries for my own sanity and emotional well being. and stopped believing the should/should not society rules that are just plain bananas.

the general guidelines are this:

"if it harms me or my family, then I am NOT participating/going somewhere/inviting someone over/or doing something/talking to them etc"

"if it doesn't harm me or my family, then I WILL."



Regardless of what other people will "think" or "say". (yes, this included my parents and siblings and in-laws.)

at rock bottom I could not afford to give one second to managing other people's emotions anymore. I had been doing it my entire life and it ruined me.

My priorities now? my kids. my spouse and most importantly MY WELL BEING come first.

I know, it sounds radical. it sounds selfish. it sounds just plain horrible.

but let me tell you, it has been AMAZING as I implemented the following steps:

  • I cut out negative people out of my life. (it doesn't matter if we are related or not- (sorry, not sorry)

  • I cut out negative media/music/entertainment out of my life.

  • I no longer will go to something if I know it's going to drain me emotionally, energetically, spiritually etc.

  • I no longer choose to spend time with people that make fun of me, or my children, or make fun of other people who are a different/race/culture/poltical affiliation etc.

Here's the thing, stopping all of these things, it's not that I feel I am better than negative people/situations, it's because I have completely stopped living that way. Living that way made me depressed and suicidal. And that's because living that way is wrong, it's not who we are. We are love and light and compassion. And even though negative thinking and living make you feel like crap and make you want to not exist, negative thinking and living are addictive.

So hanging out with people/situations/media that are negative for me would be like an alcoholic going into a bar just to "hang out".

It's too easy to fall back into my old way of thinking and living, "that the world is out to get me", "that life sucks", that "I can't wait for this to be over or that to start and then I'll be happy" and "everyone is an idiot" mindset.


Life is beautiful and a precious gift. We can have peace and joy and harmony every. single. day through choices and perspective.

I love my choice to be a mother and am working incredibly hard to teach them how to have a happy and positive life.

I don't want to keep yelling, but deciding to be a full time mom that teaches positivity and love? THIS IS THE HARDEST JOB I'VE EVER TAKEN. it's like swimming upstream, or learning to write with my foot.

it's going to take a long time, the pay stinks, and that's ok.


And I know I've made plenty of people mad (or my self care has been a trigger inside them for anger). But guess what? If you are a negative person and all you want to do is complain about everything and everyone and then brag about yourself or bait me to feel sorry for you, I love you enough to not be around you. I love you enough to let you hit rock bottom. I love you enough to show you what self care and self love really means.

Gone with the wind are the days of suffering to make other people happy. Of sacrificing so people think better of me. Of putting myself down to make others feel better. Of comparing my life to other people's lives. Of feeling less than or better than.

I know who I am, and what I am made of.

which means I know who you are and what you are made of.

Which ultimately means I know you can change your life too.

and as each person declares the creative rights to their life and happiness and well being, it lifts just a little bit of the world's health and happiness and well being.

God's love and miracles are all around you, waiting for you to decide to let them in. Waiting for you to ask Him and let Him in.
If you want to be really want to make people happy, choose to be happy first.

You being miserable does not DO ANYTHING. and that thing, deep down, that you believe about yourself that makes you feel you only deserve to be miserable is NOT TRUE.

it just isn't.

so I take the good days, and the hard days. and I keep going. because I know this is worth it, and if just one person every day feels a little hiccup of courage, that maybe life doesn't have to be hard and miserable? that maybe they could actually be happy?, well, then I'm grateful my struggles help. I'm grateful they lift. I'm grateful for all that I've been through, because it brought me here.

and right now, right here, is pretty amazing.

*side note- just because I haven't texted you back and/or called or visited doesn't necessarily mean you are negative, it might be because I'm a mom of 4 kids that are in 800 extracurricular activities and I also love to spend time with my husband first. so yeah, double check first ;)*
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