a last walk


One day about a week ago, when I was feeling particularly good, I decided to take a walk in search of my bees, wondering what plants they might be visiting now.  I paid for those steps that evening and the following days.  I don’t think I’ll be taking another walk anytime soon.  The weather is so beautiful though and it is hard sometimes to sit when I want to walk.  But I am realizing that it isn’t as hard as I thought it would be.  I get excited now about things I previously took for granted such as a clean bathroom or a dusted shelf (okay, maybe I always feel a little excited about clean bathrooms.)

Yesterday a friend visited for a few hours and brought dinner with him.  In anticipation of his arrival everyone worked hard to clean the house while I mostly knitted.  At the end of the day we had good company, good food, and the house was still pretty clean when we went to bed last night.  There was enough food left over for another night’s meal, and I am nearly finished with a big knitting project.

Jonny and I laughed the other night about our typically furious preparations for a new baby.  This time around that’s not happening.  The basics are just about all we can manage.  We’ll try to get cleaned up, but I doubt the bedroom’s going to get painted as I had hoped.  The girls’ bunkbeds probably won’t be built, and various other projects we had hoped to finish will fall to the side.  I’m realizing that I am really okay with that.  It will all get done eventually.  Everything does not have to be “perfect” before the baby is born.  Honestly, I am a little bit curious what it feels like to just have a baby in the midst of life’s chaos without that big “baby’s coming” home project checklist all scratched off.  It think it will be a great act of letting go, which is always good for those of us with perfectionist tendencies.  I’m thankful right now for where we are, because this is where we are supposed to be.

Comments

  1. Ginny, I love the pictures you took. I know the feeling about wanting everything to be perfect, but it’s good youcan let that go, just rest in God’s goodness and sufficiency in this imperfect world. I used to be a perfectionist too, and it was all about me controlling my world, rather than letting God be in control. Now, by his grace, I try to focus on what he wants me to do in this moment, this day, and let the rest go. My house is not always clean, but it’s clean enough and I think I’m more welcoming to visitors and at peace with myself.

  2. beautiful photos, and I’m glad you were able to go out and see the world!

  3. That’s so great that you’ve reached that acceptance. I have only three, but when the third came, I only needed one small corner of our bedroom ‘perfect’. With the first it was an entire room + closet. I can see how, if I were to have more, that there would be a certain peace about having her/him amid the daily chaos…besides you have all those ‘perfect’ knitted goods just waiting. What could be better.

  4. I’ve come to accept that perfect is a concept that changes with time, and sometimes drastically! 🙂
    Embrace the serenity. And thanks, as always, for sharing your lovely photos!

  5. Ginny,
    So beautifully written and just the words I needed to hear right now.

    Love,
    Taryn

  6. hi ginny…….”I’m thankful right now for where we are, because this is where we are supposed to be.” now that is a perfect family motto! love it. blessings to you and your lovely family.

  7. Bret always says we ought to invite company at least once a month just so the house gets a proper cleaning.
    Your bees are so pretty; what variety are they?

  8. I know exactly how that is with getting excited about something being clean. I think the one I get most excited about is having all clean sheets, pillows, everything on a bed. I can’t wait to jump into bed and snuggle into all the clean blankets. 🙂

  9. Good attitude! I think it’s a good lesson for all mothers, and everyone too. Truly beautiful photographs in this post! (sjn821 on Rav)

  10. When I was pregnant with our last baby I had a list FOUR pages long of all the things that had to get done before the baby arrived. And they weren’t all little things either. It was “gut the upstairs bathroom” and “repaint the porch” and other such ridiculous things. In fact, before I even had taken the test but had a suspicion I was pregnant I decided I absolutely NEEDED to paint one of the bedrooms because I MIGHT BE PREGNANT. I am an absolutely insane nester. My poor husband. He does well with deadlines so I think part of me uses that to my advantage as well 🙂 All that to say, it was exhausting. It felt great and I’m glad I did most of that stuff but I totally relate to that curiosity of doing it differently! So many of my friends don’t get anything ready until just before (or even after!) baby comes and somehow they survive. It would be neat to experience it that way, I think! I’m looking forward to at least for now, living vicariously through you… Prayers for you, Ginny.

    Also, those photos? STUNNING.

    • That sounds like our list: rip out rotten floor in front of living room window, replace window and build window seat, pressure wash and stain the house, paint exterior trim….etc. etc. So not happening!!! Jonny does well with deadlines too and usually so much gets done during my pregnancies, but this time he has too much to do at work in addition to having to manage way more of the household stuff that I usually do. I’m focusing on the fact that this baby will have a lot of hand knits to wear 🙂

  11. “Everything does not have to be “perfect” before the baby is born.”

    I am coming to this realization too. This is just my second pregnancy; with my first, I was finishing up my graduate degree (graduated two weeks after he was born!), so I didn’t have much time or energy to focus on preparing the way I wanted. This time around was going to be different-nursery put together and decorated, etc.

    Instead I am sitting here, very pregnant with twins and feeling like a time bomb, with little energy and a toddler to care for … in a house filled with boxes because we JUST moved, without a washer or drier so I can’t even start cleaning the newborn clothes. Time to let go of plans and embrace the reality of the present moment. 🙂

  12. When you aren’t feeling well you start to really appreciate the beauty in every day chaos. I get migraines and when I feel that ill I try to remind myself to just be happy snuggling with the kiddos when the house is a crazy mess around me! Enjoy this last time with your little family. Your beautiful baby will be here soon enough to mix into the controlled chaos.

  13. Such beauty in those photos! I don’t know how you do it. I just saw wooden bunk beds in Craigslist yesterday. FYI!

  14. I must admit I was one of those mothers who had to have it all “done”. When our 4th daughter came we were trying to sell our house, so everything had to stay clean. It was hard, but I did manage to have a little corner of our room decorated for her.
    My second daughter has a tendency to be like me, only a little more intense about having it perfect, but my oldest who just delivered Luke on Saturday has just let things be. She works full time and this is #3 and even though she is my artist and does fabulous things, Luke’s room is not yet finished and she is ok with that. In fact the rocking chair is not even accessible yet to nurse in!
    It is driving me crazy, but like a trying to be good mother, I am letting it go!

  15. I’m in the same boat. Since preterm contractions have landed me on medication and bedrest, the long list of things to do before Baby arrives has sort of gone out the window. Two more weeks until I can get up, 7 weeks until Baby is due. We’ll see how long we makes it after I get up! The bare minimum is getting done around here, but my 2 year old is being well taken care of, so that’s all I can really ask. Best of luck to you!

  16. Yes Dear Ginny, You are doing the most important work just where you are and your little babe will be happy to be in your arms and with his family. The rest is details, that coming from a momma who can’t ever let go of the details but I have been where you are and you are doing great!

  17. I had the long list of things to get done while pregnant for my 5th child. I work well under pressure so most of the list was still not finished at just 2 weeks before due date. But I wasn’t concerned, I was overdue 7 days for my 4th pregnancy and 10 for my 3rd….I figured I had enough time. Well….after spending an entire day at the beach and playing in the big waves and walking miles along the shoreline just 2 weeks before due date, my baby decided it was time to come. I woke up the morning after the beach feeling like I had been run over by a horse and badly sunburned….and going into labor. I kept telling myself that this was just false labor, but it wasn’t and my long list of things to get done, never got done. After my beautiful baby boy was born I looked at my list and just laughed at it….he didn’t care if the house was spotless or if his room was decorated or if my garden was all harvested. He just wanted to be held by his family that loved him so much and nursed by a mother that was at peace with the mess and the unfinished list. My baby is a year old now, and I think there are still things on the list that aren’t finished. I guess a new baby teaches us what really matters in life.
    You have a beautiful family, I love following your blog. Thank you.

  18. I needed to read this today. No, not a baby on the way, but so many irons in the fire that I want finished NOW. You are so right about perfectionists! Your heart is beautiful. Thank you for sharing. Even your photograhy encourages me to rest. *hugs*

  19. We did that with our last birth. We just couldn’t get it all done so we didn’t try. She just showed up one day, and life returned to “normal” pretty fast. It was surreal how normal it was.

    I totally know what you mean about wanting to do things and then totally regretting it when pregnant. Ugh, that was about every day in the last weeks of some pregnancies. You seem so much at peace, though. I’m happy about that.

  20. What a beautiful butterfly that is – amazing that you were able to get those shots. Glad you’re having peace with the way things are now. 🙂

  21. Those pictures are beautiful! And don’t sweat not having everything ready for the baby! It’s not like he/she will notice! 🙂

  22. I am very guilty of fretting over To Do lists and ticking off checklists and I am also trying to let go. After an important event (or actually even something that seems minor to others – lol!) I have looked back and wondered why I got so worked up when it really didn’t matter. I spend so much energy on this sort of stress and I am really trying hard to change. I think it is a great thing that you are doing this too – its very liberating even if it doesn’t come to some of us naturally. Lily. xxx

  23. Hey, I used one of your images to link to your blog today. If that’s not okay, I’ll take it right down.
    http://peerieflooers.blogspot.com/2013/09/i-love-blogging-and-i-love-reading.html

    Cheers and love

  24. beautiful pictures of course. Yes, it is good at times to be in the position where not all can be done according to how or what we wish it. I’ve been pondering this today actually; how when we can do more do we do things not according to us but according to God and His mercy and when we can do little, to whom are we looking? Thank God we do have One to look to. We are praying for you and baby….

  25. That picture of the bees on the blue box provided me so much calm just now.
    <3
    Jessa

  26. Ginny, I just enjoy your blog so much. Thank you for sharing so honestly. Although we are different in some ways, we are similar in many more, and your thoughts resonate with me in a very meaningful way.

    I am struggling with the desire for control and perfection…and I only have 1 child. I love the way you prioritize your children and work to be present with them. That is something I am working towards.

    So many blogs have fallen off my radar, but yours has just gotten better for me. Thanks again 🙂

    Anna in OK

  27. Wonderful pics of the insects!! I remember when my last baby was born (18 years ago!) – I was home from the hospital in less than 24 hours (natural birth, but in the hospital), and the house was just as messy as it was when we left. It was OK! My best to you!! When are you due? Soon?

  28. Preparing for a new baby is fun. But one of the best things about home birthing, for me, is that the baby can be born amidst the chaos. One day he/she’s on the inside, the next, on the outside. And that’s that. The siblings go to sleep, go to visit grandma, and when they wake up/get home, there’s a new family member making noise. Seamless and not dramatic, exactly how I like it. (also, with paternity leave, my husband gets more done in his time off after the baby than before but still, there are some things that just HAVE to be done 😉 ).

  29. I hadn’t realised you were pregnant so when I read “I took a last walk” I thought something *awful* had happened. I’m so relieved, and congratulations! (I should probably read your blogs more closely but your photos are always so beautiful I get distracted!)

    I’m sure everything will be fine, but good luck!

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