In an effort to keep my children alive while swimming this summer, but also simituniously putting my sanity on the line, my little two kids have swim lessons this week. Back to back.
My kids take private lessons, so we pack a lunch, head to the house where lessons are, and while the first kid is swimming, we eat lunch under a beautiful, large oak tree. Then, the kids swap out, and whoever went first eats and the second kid swims and we hang out under the tree.
it's June in Alabama. So, sometimes, most of the time, it's almost always hot. Yesterday, we sat under the tree, sweating our tushies off. We didn't really feel bad about it. We had a great lunch. My oldest and I even got up to walk a little because it was hot and thick and, plus, Fitbit steps. But, again, it wasn't too bad, no one even complained about the heat. We made some memories.
Today, however, it's breezy, comfortable, even enjoyable. We marveled at the wind, sprawled out in the sun, even, and we laughed and had a great lunch.
Neither experience was bad, just different. We had a lovely lunch both times, even if we were a little sweatier the first day.
It's still the same tree, the same routine, the same lunch, the same kids, the same ants and bugs and it's even still June. But, it is different today. We notice, more, how uncomfortable it was yesterday only when we compared it to today.
It reminds me of something a mentor doula of mine said to me once. Not exact words (it's been a while and a few kids) but to tune of "just because you make different choices for another birth doesn't negate your good feelings about a previous birth". I love this truth. Love it.
Because, y'all, I can't even tell you how many times I hear or read stories from women who start to feel bad about a previously good experience due to outside forces (or people) or new knowledge. Heck, I was one of them!
My first vbac was one of the.most.amazing. events in my life. But, yet, there's no way I'd chose the same things now that I did then. But, that doesn't take away how amazing it was! It just makes it different, and me more knowledgeable.
So, second, third, fourth time mommas, I'm talking to you. It's ok to have good feelings and memories from your previous birth while wanting something different for this baby! Your first birth doesn't have to be traumatic for you to want something better next time, use a doula, or make different choices either! If your previous birth was a great moment for you, embrace it! Be thankful for it! Tell it to others!
In in the meantime, we have swim lessons again tomorrow, too. I have to admit, though, as much fun as we had on Monday, I'm kind of hoping for another windy day. And that's ok.
Tracy Abney is a certified birth and bereavement doula serving Huntsville, Madison and other parts of north Alabama.