Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Closing Chapter 2019: The hardships, blessings & onto 2020!

Oh 2019. You weren't all that bad. Really, you weren't. But when I think back on you, for some reason, only the hard times stand out.  Coming off of an amazing year (2018) it just seemed like there was a lot of bad days. There was a lot that happened that I didn't share from this past year. I guess not wanting to come off as whiny or a chronic complainer deterred me from divulging to the public... I know there are so many others out there facing worse. But I decided to write it all out here because this is my story and it doesn't mean that it wasn't real for me just because worse is happening to others. It doesn't mean that my hardships are silly because someone else has more to bear.

It was indeed a REALLY tough year for me. The beginning of 2019 started off good. We began the process of building our new house. Which was SO fun and exciting to do. Although a bit stressful, it was a new experience and we were happy to attempt it!  Ty and I did a fun little Valentine's trip, just him and I- to La Cantera Resort. Which thank God we did because we had NO idea how crazy the last half of the year would be. We had no idea that it would be the last alone getaway for over a year or more.  Ty and I started out on the crazy journey to look into a side-business: becoming gym owners. That took months to come together and still is a work in progress. I went on a camping adventure with Scarlett and her girl scout troop. Scarlett and I made a trip back to NY by ourselves to visit and pack things we had left behind. I got a new sporty Jaguar F Pace SUV and then we celebrated 2 fun birthday parties with the kids turning 8 and 4!!! We also added another GoldenDoodle to our family. We may not have done that if we knew we'd be adding another baby shortly after!! I was also in the BEST shape of my life! I was eating the most clean I have ever eaten, I was the most fit I had ever been!! I also felt the best I ever had mentally and physically. And thank God for that because everything was about to change.

Summer hit and everything turned upside down.

I found out I was pregnant.  Surprise!! The best kind of surprise you can get if you are on the fence of wanting more kids. And at 34, I was nearing that decision which was looking like no. But God had other plans for us. Baby number 3 was on it's way.
It was probably the most sick I've felt for such a long stretch of time. I went right from non-stop morning-day-night sickness, brutal fatigue to anemia.  Every time I felt like I was finally on the mend, I was mistaken.  Within a day or two, I'd be back to feeling like crap. It always puts a lot of strain on my relationship with Ty when I am pregnant. I guess I don't really feel like myself. I feel like I'm just waiting for the real "me" to return and that certainly plays into my relationships. Thankfully the first 2 pregnancies I only felt super sick for the first 4 months. This pregnancy, I wasn't as lucky. I felt like I had a short fuse 24/7. My moody temperament was probably due to hormones and the fact that I was couch bound for weeks. It is NOT easy for a person who loves to be so active, to be so idle. I don't feel like I was a very good mother for the last half of 2019. Or even a good wife for that matter. I feel as though I was just...surviving. I hope my family knows that I did the best I could for feeling the way I did. I hope they know that I am sorry for the absent moments or the sharp words. I can only apologize and make it up to them. Teaching my kids that life isn't always rainbows and butterflies, but that when we go through difficult times, we get back up and make things right.
Ty and I fought a lot during this time. 95% of this was me. And still I know it's not even my fault because my state of mind was not at it's best. Ty took over everything that I once did. Every meal, he cooked. Every bath, he gave. Every drop-off or class project, he did. Every silent night that I didn't say a word to him because I was so angry with how little I had accomplished....I hope he knows it had nothing to do with him. Those first few months I kind of went into this hibernation where I just didn't feel like myself or know who I was anymore. But then the sickness started to give up a bit around month 5ish.

I kept working out through all of that horribleness. I pushed through the pregnancy exhaustion for the first few months. I even prioritized this over spending time with my kids. For most of you, you may not know that working out and eating well is a HUGE part of my life and for many reasons. It is literally the medicine that helped me overcome some really bad anxiety and just feeling like sh*#. So to have this taken away from me was like taking away my medicine.
Unfortunately, soon after the morning sickness let up,  the anemia hit and it hit HARD.  I had this with my first 2 kids but not to the extent that I did this time and not so early on. It just goes to show how lacking something your body needs can impact you! I had some scary symptoms and it took a good while and some to get it under control. Working out was not even an option during that time. I could barely walk to the other room to work from home and then by the time I was done working, I was ready for bed. Mentally, this was a very hard time for me. I didn't get dressed, I didn't put on make-up or clean my house (which if you know me, you know my house dirty is not an option for long). I just kept my head above water, that was all I could do. All the while we were prepping for the gym, Ty doing mostly everything for that besides some design options and what little input I could give during that time. We moved into the new house on the first week of school and that was an adventure in itself. Kind of a blur now but that is a whole other story that I could tell you about involving a leak pouring through the dining room ceiling on day one!! 

I could feel my mental state and physical state sinking again- worse than the first trimester. Also if you know me, you know that I am not a big cryer. Never have been. Off and on during this pregnancy, there were definitely some tears shed in the closet with the door closed. Just complete exhaustion and defeat. And no one saw that. It was probably the only way I could release some of the stress since I wasn't able to work out- my regular stress reliever.

And so this is how 2019 was for most of the year....Hard. The last 2-3 weeks I have felt the best that I have my entire pregnancy. My anemia is finally under control and although I have those last month aches and pains, heartburn and insomnia, they are a breeze compared to what I've been through. The funny thing is,  through ALL of this, I have seen the blessings around me. And now that I am back to feeling like "me", I am able to acknowledge that. I saw my 2 healthy kids running around making me crazy with a messy house. Ha. I saw my husband who took on everything while I was out of commission. I saw the beautiful, brand new house we built go up brick by brick- room by room. The gym that we dreamt of for so long, finally becoming a reality!  I saw the little feet sticking out of my stomach with energetic kicks. I saw the gifts we were able to wrap up for our family and the food that went into the fridge for holiday dinners. I've said SO many times before that I see life as a book of chapters. Each one different and not always full of happy stories. This last chapter was so sweet and sour at the very same time. Funny how life works.
But I DO believe that great things are preceded by chaos. I do believe that 2020 will be a year of hard work, busy schedules and exhausting nights. But I just know that 2019 has prepared the foundation for us to have a blessed and wonderful 2020.

We are going into 2020 quietly. No crazy party or champagne-filled evening. No sequin dresses or confetti-filled rooms. As I look around, I know that next New Year's Eve,  everything will probably look much different. We might be having a big party or maybe we'll be watching fireworks. Maybe we'll be sipping cocktails in a room filled with people or traveling somewhere. But tonight, in this chapter, I'm sitting here next to a man who never quits me no matter how difficult I am. Watching him sip whiskey and rub my arm. Watching a couple of kids asleep before midnight under a Christmas tree still lit up in the corner of our living room-holding on to that last bit of holiday glow.  A few candles lit around a dark house. Some fireworks going off outside in the distance. And as I lay my head on Ty and close my eyes...a page turns and close out another chapter. For which I am so grateful for. There is so much to come and it's such a blessing to welcome 2020.

So what's ahead for 2020?? I can't say I know. But I have a feeling it may be an amazing year!! Happy New Year friends!!! Now we are off for a little family hike.

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