Finding a New Normal & Showing Myself Grace in Pregnancy

To say these last couple of months have been a bit overwhelming (in all the best ways, obviously) – would be a pretty giant understatement. I don’t know how we manage to always end up doing everything at once (like that time 4 years ago when we adopted a puppy, moved to a new place, and I quit my day job – all within a couple weeks)!! This time we found out we were expecting twins, closed on our first home, and moved all within a few weeks during the absolute busiest time of our wedding season. As you can imagine, it was enough for me just to adjust to the new (amazing) reality of finally being pregnant… and with TWINS none the less… without adding all that other craziness on top of it!

I’ll be 11 weeks along on Thursday… and considering people seemed to LOVE sharing absolute horror stories with me about being pregnant with twins (thanks everybody!! haha), I feel like I’ve been fortunate to have relatively manageable symptoms so far. (Knock on wood!) That said, I’ve still obviously been dealing with all the usual first trimester symptoms: nausea/wooziness, “pregnancy brain”, and total exhaustion. I’ve had to learn to really listen to what my body (and the Little Buddies!) need and learned to let go in a lot of ways I never allowed myself to before.

I’ve been known to be a bit of a work-a-holic (which is natural when you work for yourself and LOVE what you do!) – so this new phase in our life has been beautiful and frustrating all at the same time. I find myself wanting to keep the hours I used to and stay as on top of things as I always have – but unfortunately (and fortunately) – I just can’t always push myself the way I used to. I’ve learned to show myself more grace… to let the blog sit quiet for a day if I just can’t manage to do that on top of everything else I need to get done that day for our business. I’ve eased up on working out – somewhat out of paranoia, but mostly because it was too hot and I was too exhausted. As a result, I’ve learned that it is okay if I don’t feel as strong as I used to right now, because I’m actually stronger in lots of news ways too – like the part about how I’m growing two humans inside of me. I mean… What?!  I’m learning to work smarter, and not longer (which I have an inkling will come in handy when I’m running a business with two little kiddos running around, yes?!).

I’m allowing myself more quiet time than I ever have before in my life and I’m finding so much more peace because of it. I’ve realized that I don’t constantly have to go-go-go and do-do-do. It is more than okay to sit on the front porch with Chloe for a bit and just listen to the sounds of the neighborhood. It’s okay to lay down on the couch and “rest my eyes” (as my mom likes to say :)) if the exhaustion is clouding my brain. I’ve gotten better at actually taking days off when my calendar is marked with a day “OFF.” (I knoooow. I always tried in the past, but inevitably ended up working at least for part of most of my days off.) This is partly because I’m much too tired to work the day after shooting a wedding now, and partly because we have so many fun home projects to work on together that work is further from my mind on a quiet Sunday afternoon than it used to be.

I know this season of life we are in is fleeting, and it is already flying by so quickly. We have wanted to be in this season for oh-so-long. We’ve hoped… and prayed… and dreamed of it for years and years… so now that it is here, I want to cherish it and soak it in for all that it is (nausea, exhaustion, and all)! I know this new ‘normal’ is only temporary and there will constantly be ‘new normals’ again and again in the years to come as we adjust to being new parents and all that comes with it… so I’m taking these lessons in grace and balance with me as we go – certain I will need to be reminded of them over and over.

I felt like I had learned so much about both of these things over the years since we have been working for ourselves, but these lessons are even more apparent to me now. In the past I would often find excuses to not show myself grace, or not allow myself balance… but now I am acutely aware that my number one priority is growing two healthy and strong little babies, and no late night email replies, blog updates, or Instagram posts are more important than that. So, with that in mind, we spent our Sunday off yesterday sleeping in and eating a late breakfast of blueberry pancakes, followed by some cuddles on the couch that turned into a family nap. Eventually we got to moving and worked on our front yard together until the sun set and we had to use a flashlight to see (haha!), before closing out the night with a movie.

It was the most peaceful day I’ve had in a while, and I dare say that it was not because I showed myself grace and allowed myself balance, but because I didn’t feel guilty that I had. In the past couple of months I’ve been allowing myself these things more and more, but I always feel a bit guilty when I do. I felt like choices I was making meant I was failing as a business owner or as a wife… when in reality – nobody else was thinking these things based on my decisions – only I was. So I’m going to do my best moving forward to embrace the balance … to cherish each moment we are in right now… and to not feel guilty about any of it.

(Here are some cell phone photos from front yard progress so far! I’ll have to add the most recent after picture later – because it was too dark to get one when we finished the new plants along the front walk last night – as you can see in the last photo of me totally filthy! haha)

Galleria Marchetti Wedding in Chicago by Christy Tyler Photography_0002Galleria Marchetti Wedding in Chicago by Christy Tyler Photography_0003

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Christy & James are Chicago based but happily travel anywhere in the world that beautiful love stories take them!