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I once heard a lecture wherein the speaker discussed how the human mind has an uncanny ability to focus its attention on anything but the present.  Often it ruminates on the past or shifts to the future, yet being fully present in the moment proves difficult.  He suggested gently reminding oneself that it is still right now, then to be there in the weight of the moment.

Of course, as my husband jokes, there are times when we want to say, 'unfortunately, it is still the now.'

While the concept of living in the moment is certainly not new and might even sound simplistic, the impact on my life has been profound.  I quickly discovered how often I divert my attention away from the present, my thoughts being elsewhere.  When I started reminding myself that it was still now, that I could only do what I was doing now, life became easier.   I no longer had to focus on all there was to do.  Instead, I shifted my attention to the one thing I was doing.   This mindset was especially helpful on the days when the dishes were piled high and the laundry even higher.  The days when my kids were cranky and Dan was working late, when I felt overwhelmed.   I place my awareness on whatever it is that I am doing, instead of on the heaviness of my expectations and the length of my To Do list.  When I do this, the day usually ends up going much more smoothly than the story I had playing in my head predicted.

Over the last few weeks, I went from feeling fantastic to experiencing severe discomfort.  As I move closer to birth, the laxity in my sacroiliac joint is making it difficult to walk.  My stride now resembles that of a duck... or a pirate.  My midwives believe the baby is likely transverse, so when I sit down something big and hard often wedges under my rib.  Experiencing pain is a sure fire way to bring you back to the present.  As much as I want to enjoy and soak in this pregnancy, being uncomfortable admittedly makes it more difficult.

Yet as Dan and I talked through this I realized there is a big difference between being present and romanticizing the present.  I can recognize the sacredness of this time, while admitting that it's not all rainbows and unicorns at every moment.  In the spirit of One Thousand Gifts, I can continue to count all that I am grateful for (because there is so much to be grateful for!) and accept what is.  I can look for the lessons to be learned.  Slowing down is an inevitable part of life with a newborn.  I'm getting some practice now.  As much as I do cherish this time, I'm not meant to be pregnant forever.   The discomforts of the third trimester encourage me to be open to the fact that this little one will soon enter the world and she and I will begin a new chapter together.  

I also feel a swelling of gratitude for the stability that we have as a family.  Sometimes I think about Evangeline's first mom and I wonder what her pregnancy was like.  Was it easy?  Was it hard?  Did she know then that she would not be able to parent Evie?  If so, facing those more challenging days of pregnancy would become substantially more difficult.   My heart aches when I think about it. 

We will continue to take things moment by moment.  Or at least we will try.


  1. Such a lovely post, my friend. My heart is with yours, trying to find gratitude moment to moment in the dailiness of life.

    So sorry that you have become do uncomfortable. This reminds me to pray for you.

    Clearly, God is at work, using this nesting time to teach you and remind you.

  2. what a profound post!!! I need to remind myself more often to be in the present and not thinking about the million other things my mind is racing to think is about the here and now and enjoying the little things(as my little won't be little forever)

    Sorry you are feeling uncomfortable, but as you said it is certainly a limited amount of time, and once she comes there will be moments you miss about being pregnant with your little one:)

  3. YOu have the right perspective Rachel. Enjoy those moments. You know this EXTREME CRAZY INSANE HEAT certainly doesn't help us PG mommies does it??
    Thanks for your encouragement on my blog. It has been soooo difficult for me to adjust to having another hospital birth after having such a beautiful homebirth. I continue to fight the "system", but pray I can labor peacefully : )

  4. Rachel,

    First: hang in there! You are in my prayers daily.

    Also: great post! I find I have no trouble "being there in the weight of the moment" right now, but I'm having a much harder time remembering that I am grateful. I'm getting too bogged down by the grind, and the mechinations of a clever, energetic boy. ;-) Thanks for the reminder!!!


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