It sounds disgustingly selfish -- "me first." Those who know me know my life is a whirlwind and it's rare that I just sit down for the sake of sitting down. My hectic lifestyle caught up with me last week, as I dealt with running a million miles an hour, battling a particularly intense episode of allergies (a new and exciting development as I approach middle age!), and... oh, yes... building a tiny human being. By Friday morning, my head hurt so much I could barely see straight. I took off from work a couple of hours early to try and fix the problem; later, I discovered it had probably been a "caffeine headache," as I hadn't had my daily allotted small soy latte. Saturday, I was up before the sun, to get our oldest to school (marching band competition) and then head downtown for our city's first mini-marathon. I wasn't running (despite a desperate longing to do so), but there to support a friend and her husband. He was running his first mini ever, and raising money for the American Cancer Society. (If anyone wants to see a truly inspirational story, visit www.indianasnewscenter.com and watch the segment titled "Man loses 100 lbs. to run...") Anyway, after cheering on runners for the better part of 90 minutes, I headed home, only to start experiencing noticeable Braxton-Hicks contractions. Nothing will make you sit up and take notice faster than an unexpected contraction when you know darn well you've been burning the candle at both ends. I rested, but still had a weekend full of places to go and things to do around the house. Late Sunday afternoon, after hoisting a full laundry basket upstairs for folding, I realized I had officially reached "overdone" status. I ordered myself to lay on the bed and do absolutely nothing for the rest of the evening except drink lots of water and watch TV.
I realized my standard operating procedure for everyday life had to change. As much as I'd like to think I'm able to handle anything thrown my, I have to admit I have different limits these days. I found myself so busy taking care of everyone and everything else, it apparently slipped my mind that there's a little one inside me who needs me more than anyone else right now. So, this morning, I let myself sleep in an extra hour. I enjoyed an actual breakfast (made by my wonderful husband) rather than grabbing a bagel from the fridge to eat at my desk. I got to work at 9 rather than 8, and the world didn't come to a screeching halt. Amazing.
Taking an extra 60 minutes out of a busy day to focus on myself is still an uneasy concept for me to wrap my arms around. But as disgustingly selfish as it sounds, it was worth every last precious second.