A few days ago I shared your favourite posts from 2016 but I thought I should do a little personal reflection...
Oh twenty-sixteen, you were one wild ride.
I entered the year with an optimistic outlook as per usual (my #2 strength is positivity after all!) This was the year I was going to meet my baby...the one I was waiting for, the one I had dreamed about.
In January we found out we were having a boy. Now although, I had a feeling it was a boy, the news was hard for me to take in (I shared more about this in my post, "You're having a boy!")
I remember thinking some pretty irrational aka CRAZY thoughts...What do I do with a boy? How do I talk to a boy? How am I going to be a good mom to a boy? All I ever knew was taking care of little girls! But boy, (no pun intended lols) did those thoughts fly right on out as soon as I met Luca. I honestly couldn't imagine anything different and am secretly wishing for 3 more boys (lols...honestly I'll be so grateful with any gender!)
The rest of the year kinda blended together...a lot of good stuff happened like...
- James and I enjoyed a little baby moon in Ucluelet. Love that rugged west coast
- At work, we held our 7th Illuminate conference! We also attended the couple's retreat that our church puts on and got so rocked by the speakers! Looking forward to this years...it will be our first night away from Luca!!!
- Our bathroom reno got started and almost finished...except for the shower. From 38 weeks pregnant until 5 days postpartum, I had to kneel in the bath, turn the tap on with a screwdriver and then either have a bath or shower under the water coming out of the pipe...not ideal but it was so worth it. I still love that bathroom so much, James (Liira Developments) did such an amazing job.
And then the biggest moment of my life came...my little lion arrived on his due date (making his type-A mama very happy.)
Oh man, birth in itself was one WILD experience (Read Luca's full birth story here) but nothing could prepare me for becoming a mother. There's that saying that you hear and hear and hear but I never truly understood it until I had Luca...
“Making the decision to have a child - it is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body. ”
― Elizabeth Stone
I know I talked about it on here before (like in this post!) but I experienced some intense anxiety after having Luca.
He was a bit jaundice & lost almost 10% of his birthweight. Those two things are VERY common but no one had ever talked to me about them before...or maybe I just never listened. So those first early days I was feeding him every two hours..aka at night I would sleep for 1.5 hours, feed him for 30 (ps. feeding a sleepy jaundiced baby is not for the weak) and then go back to sleep for another 1-1.5 hours. Life with a newborn is CRAZY...but thankfully I had a baby who would go to sleep.
He gained back steadily but my anxiety stayed with me. I remember going for walks with James and just crying and crying. I didn't want to leave the house because I was so afraid that something would happen to him and also the fact that I would have to nurse in public. Nursing was also a tough one for us...it took about TWO months until we got the hang of it.
I convinced myself that every grunt (and he grunted alot!) meant that something was wrong. I would watch him all the time to make sure he was breathing. And then he started crying and crying and crying. He turned out to have reflux which sorted itself out with some meds and time.
Those early days were so HARD. I was so emotional. I had no idea what I was doing. And I had no control. I think that last one was the hardest pill for me to swallow. I'm a control freak and for once in my life, I couldn't control the outcome. My only option was giving up control to God and asking the Holy Spirit to guide me as a new mom...and oh how God showed up. I also had mad support from friends and family...it's a rough time being a new mom, please reach out to someone!!
I also experienced a lot of loneliness in the summer. I'm crazy extroverted, talking to people all day at work and all of a sudden I was at home ALL day ALONE with a baby who isn't the greatest conversationalist.
James working a lot of jobs + people being away made for many moments of loneliness. Knowing it was only a season gave me comfort.
Once September hit, it got a lot better as people were back and Dream Women started back up at church (a weekly women's group with lots of moms!)
Oh, I also turned 30 this year!! My friends threw me the greatest party and spoiled me rotten. I am soooo blessed. I also feel like a legit adult now, lols.
My sister had my niece Amelia exactly one month after Luca and it has been so amazing to be on mat leave with my sister...my niece is the cutest...I love her to pieces!!!
October - December was a complete whirlwind! In October we went to San Diego as a family of three and it was the greatest. Luca was 4.5 months and it was the greatest age to travel. I have some travelling with a baby posts in the works, so look out for those soon!
Christmas was especially sweet this year. For once in 10 years, I wasn't working! I got to slow down and really savour the season.
I grew soooo much this year.
I feel more efficient than ever...which seems a bit odd but honestly I now feel what took me 2 hours to do takes me 30 minutes. I'm realizing how precious time is...especially nap time lols.
I feel like I was stretched more than ever before and I'm so surprised that I'm raising a tiny human!
Every single day I look at him and still can't believe he is mine. I carried him, grew him, birthed him and now I raise him to one day release him into this world (!!!!!!!!!!!!)
Becoming a mother has been one of the most amazing things I have walked through but I want to be clear here, becoming a mother has not "completed me". I am only complete in Christ. Being his daughter is still my #1 calling and this year I'm looking forward to finding the balance between motherhood, being a wife + going back to work. It's going to be a challenge but I know God will guide me and give me the grace I need. Sorry for all the rambling...it was one heck of a year!!
Here's to 2017...the best is yet to come.