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Healthy Stress and Breakfast Cereal

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One of the best parts about being pregnant is the Self-Care Mandate.

As in, now that you are a baby incubator, you need to not stress out and eat right. For me that has boiled down to the fact that nothing happens when I get home from work until after I have had my afternoon sit and a bowl of cereal.

I am working my way through the cereal aisle, revisiting all of my old favorites from when I was a kid. Last week was Kix. Now we’re working on Frosted Mini-Wheats…but the healthy variety.

It’s a pretty good routine.

The forcing myself to sit down and decompress part. Not the giving in to baby’s cravings for breakfast foods part (although that’s a good thing too).

Stress management has never been something at which I have excelled. My senior year of college I had three jobs on top of some 15 credits a semester and justified that working that much was a fine thing particularly since I never worked more than 15 hours a week at any one job. Never mind the fact that if you added them all up I probably logged an easy 20 -ish hours in a week. I had it under control, so it was all good.

In high school, I quit ballet after 10th grade because that was the one thing I felt I could part with. Marching Band only lasted for 3.5 months. Theater only took up time when we had a show going on. French Club was pretty low stress in that all we ever did was plot coups of our own elected officials and sell candy. I mean, it’s not like my work for yearbook was any big deal. It was one of my extra-curriculars at school and school work counted as a regular part of my day. Right?

I like to think of my high school self as driven rather than over-committed. Involved, rather than a bad manager of my own time.

My folks probably worried about me a lot more than they ever let on.

On the one hand, I didn’t have time to get in trouble. On the other hand, I wasn’t friends with people who got in trouble. I hung out with a group that was similarly academically-inclined. Our idea of a wild party usually involved sleep-over study sessions and eating too many marshmallows.

Yep. Real teen rebel here.

I like to think that my time spent being driven and involved led to me having an early understanding of what types of positive stress I need to thrive (side projects as a distraction but also being able to decide who gets my time). That, and I can handle the pressure of working on deadline like it’s a coffee break.

If time travel were possible, I would probably steer clear of ever meeting my high school self.  She turned out just fine without me.



New Addition

I’ve been a little distracted recently. And by a little, I mean big, life-changing kind of distracted.

We’re going to have a baby.

Okay, really I’m going to have the baby and my pirate mister is just along for moral support and trips to Kroger for cravings runs (Seriously. Who craves baked potatoes? Apparently I do.).

But I like to think of it more are a we thing because Owen and I are a team. We even like the sound of the word.

All of a sudden though I am looking at the way we live and wondering how we’re going to make this fixer-upper house work with a small person crawling around. Granted it will be a while before the kidlet will be that mobile, but thinking about all that still needs to be done around the house is now extra daunting.

I am doing my best to not be stressed out during my pregnancy by basically ignoring stressors. This avoidance strategy has always worked in the past.

For example:

The green space that is our weed-infested lawn needs to be mowed?
Meh. Not if you don’t go outside when it’s daylight.

Do I actually have clean socks for tomorrow?
Probably. That’s why my sister sent me a box of socks as a care package right?

It’s better this way. I think.

Between now and the end of April 2013, this will be transformed from a space that is sparsely used, to a kid-friendly bedroom to grow into.

Gender neutral colors and a Tardis bookshelf for starters. My writing desk/craft desk will have to find a new home. As will the drying rack actually. But those are minor details.

This is going to be brilliant!