What I'm Digging
Published February 25, 2017 | By ashley english
It is late February, and I have the door open. That bears repeating-it is February, 2/3rd’s of the way through winter, and it’s warm enough both inside the house and outside of it that I can comfortably keep the door open to enjoy the fragrance of the forest, the abundant birdsong, and not have to keep getting up to let the cats and dogs in and out. It is strange, and disconcerting, and also very welcome, all at once.
I never intended to go months without blogging. I also equally never intended to experience the sort of challenging pregnancies that I do. We make our plans, and then we see where they go, right? Such is life. I love being a mother. I love the challenges it presents and the rewards it offers more than any other work I do. That said, I don’t have easy pregnancies. This one in particular, at 40, has presented even more uphill climbs than my first, when I was 34. Though I am active and spry, a pregnancy at 40 is simply different. I move more slowly, I started showing earlier. Oh, and I groan like I have never groaned and moaned before in my life.
But, BUT, here I am, at 22 weeks, with a very active, very wiggly, very kicky little boy growing. It is both a comfort and a totally strange thing to have another life present inside of you, to have your own body serve as host to another’s. I met with a doula yesterday, my dear friend Sabrina. We didn’t use a doula with Huxley, but relied on our midwives for the entire birthing process. This go-round, I’ll be using the obstetrician who saved my life after Huxley was born (you can read the entire riveting experience here) for all of my ob/gyn needs.
But, as I age, and being a ferociously independent person my entire life (some might say stubborn…this might be true…), I’m learning that it’s okay to ask for help. In fact, it’s necessary on occasion to actively solicit it. With this birth, I’m asking for help. For myself, for Glenn, and for Huxley, and Sabrina is the ideal person to offer it. She is wise and kind and empathic and comforting and lightening bolt smart, all at once. We chatted over tea yesterday afternoon at Dobra while our husbands and sons played together at a local park. Then we all went out for fried chicken. I left our time together feeling held, and supported, and acknowledged in a way I didn’t feel with my first pregnancy. Having an advocate, in the role a doula functions in, is a serious gift, to ourselves and to those we love.
In other, non-baby news, here’s a little smattering of this and that’s that caught my attention recently:
*A dear friend of ours passed away this week. He was, without question, one of the kindest people I have ever known. As my friend Nicole put it, “there are those people who light up a room, and those who light up the world.” If you feel so led, you can read his obituary here and consider a donation.
*This cast iron teapot warmer would be a lovely way to keep your Darjeeling toasty.
*Curious to check out this pack of all-natural food coloring with the season of egg-dyeing drawing closer.
*Came across a wintersweet plant several weeks ago. It had the most ambrosial aroma, much like honeysuckle, and there it was, blooming, in winter! Thinking of getting one for here in the cove.
*Like this small roundup from A Cup Of Jo of great podcasts to check out.
*It’s seed-staring time. Here’s a helpful guide for getting started.
*We’ve been trying to increase our intake of fermented foods here at home. Thinking of giving this kraut a go.
*Are you on Instagram? I love it. While I’ve been AWOL here since October, I’m there on the regular. Some of my favorite accounts to follow are Rudy Jude, Fox Meets Bear, House Inhabit, Floret Flower, Circle Of Pines, and Little Green Shed.
*For reasons I can’t really explain, I’ve had Bob Seeger and the Silver Bullet Band on my mind lately. I have no clue why. These things happen, and I try not to fight them. I was practically reared on Bob Seeger, The Eagles, and early Rod Stewart. Maybe it’s my childhood resurfacing while I’m pregnant. Who knows. I love Bob Seeger the way folks love Christmas. He’s kind of my litmus test for friendships. If you can’t hang with Bob, I don’t know if we can hang. I’m only kind of kidding there. Who couldn’t like this crooning?!
Alright, friends. A cold, wet front is moving in. I’ve got warm P.G. Tips in my mug, beeswax candles lit, a kick in my belly, and love for you in my heart.
Whatever you do this weekend, wherever you go, and whomever you do it with, may it be grand!!!
*Glenn took this image of Mt. Pisgah yesterday afternoon from the top of our road. Looking more and more like spring everyday.