Saturday night running

Last night I went for a run but not just any run. I was running the Miles for Miracles (satellite) run with two friends. I mentioned before that I would be doing this run to help raise money for Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome or TTTS. The main run was to be held yesterday in Ontario and we ran it here, in Nova Scotia.

After getting all of our little ones to bed….or at least calm enough to leave the house we met at 8 pm. We were supposed to be four mama’s running but one mama couldn’t make it. Sometimes you just can’t do it all.

I made “race bibs” for us with a picture of Jolene’s twins, our names and even gave us a number ūüôā Wearing glow sticks we headed out onto the gravel track which was 70% pitch black. The goal was to run an “almost 5k” (4.5k) as that;s what was planned in Ontario. I had worn my garmin to keep track of how we were doing. We ended up going the full 5k and not stopping once! Well done ladies!

Miles for Miracles Run 2013

Jolene is pictured in the middle (bottom photo) is the Mama to the twin girls AND a 3-year-old boy. She brought us a little goody bag: Wine, chocolate, granola bar and water. I brought granola bars and chocolate soy milk for us too!

Since we rarely get together without our children, we sat around for a little bit…chatted, ate and drank.

Congrats to Jolene for not only training over the last 2 months but finishing her goal run. Your twin girls and son have such an awesome role model and lots of fun adventures ahead.

See you next year Miles for Miracles.

Feeling Thankful: Miles For Miracles Race {join me please}

This weekend is Thanksgiving in Canada – one I am looking forward to as my side of the family will be together on Sunday.

Apple picking with my girls

Apple picking with my girls

I’m feeling very thankful and lucky that my husband and I have two healthy and beautiful girls in our lives. On top of that, I have a friend who’s lucky to have a 3-year-old son and twin girls…let me tell you their story.

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Just over a year ago while pregnant with Hilary, I found out a good friend of mine – Jolene – was expecting twin girls! TWIN GIRLS!!!!! She already had a handsome little fella, he is one of Lilly’s best friends.

Jolene had to be flown from Halifax to Toronto for emergency surgery around 22 weeks and then back home again in a matter of days. She then went into labour REALLY early with the girls being born at 30 weeks gestation. ¬†They had a long … long road ahead of them; being born at 2 lbs 9 oz and 3 lbs 4 oz they were pretty tiny. They are now around 7 months old and big girls that smile, laugh and challenge their parents daily ūüėČ

Twin girls

Twin girls

Look at these little girls…so tiny, so precious.

Jolene started running a few months ago in hopes that she could run her first…yes FIRST 5k race on October 19th. She’s been making the time to run every other night to run –> If she can find time, so can you.

So, WHY am I writing this?

Well, the group of four mom’s that I spent the first year of Lilly’s life hanging out with will all be running 5k with her on October 19th in Kentville, Nova Scotia. Once all our babies and toddlers go to bed we plan on meeting at 8 pm and completing the run together.

Also, I’m asking for your¬†donations to the Miles for Miracles¬†fund. The¬†run is fundraising money that will go towards the Fetal Therapy Program at Mount Sinai Hospital and the 5K race is held in Listowel, Ontario on October 19th.

If you are able to donate,¬†$5, $10 or more that would be AWESOME.¬†Oh, and run or walk 5k on Oct 19th ūüôā¬†All donations over $10 will receive a tax receipt.

Run Details:

The Miles for Miracles race was created by Jodie Tummers whose twin boys also had Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome (TTTS). Jodie also had the life saving laser surgery but sadly learned the next day that one of her sons had passed away. She has been raising awareness about TTTS and fundraising for Mt. Sinai ever since.

Note: I never blogged and asked for money before but this is near and dear to my heart, therefore I ask for your support if you are able to donate to this cause, I would greatly appreciate this. 

Will you join us?

Donation or running – leave me a message.

Miles for Miracles Facebook Group (Nova Scotia)

Anyone have twins, quadruplets, or more?

Don’t forget about MyRaceRagz giveaway.

How Do You LOVE Two Children Equally ?

On Monday December 3rd 2012, we welcomed our second daughter into the world and our lives changed for ever … for the better. ¬†We got home a few days after she was born and started what would become our new routine for new the family of four: Mom, Dad, big sister Lilly and baby Hilary … oh and Maclean too ūüôā

So many emotions. So many thoughts.  How am I going to do this? How am I going to feed the baby and manage a toddler? How am I going to love both ???? And equally? Oh My God, what have we done!

Well, one night I broke down and cried. I cried and I cried – seriously. So I grabbed a piece of paper to write down my thoughts (as any blogger does, ha!) and I passed the little pieces of papers over to my husband as I couldn’t even talk about it. I wanted him to know how I was feeling and we had a good conversation after he read it.

This is what I wrote about a week after she was born, I did not change any words.

Please note, I am not sharing this because I need a family member, friend or follower to write (or call) me to say that I’m doing a great job and not to worry. ¬†I am simply writing this as this is what I felt one day and now I am ready to share it. I know that I’m not the only one to feel this way.

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So, you have your first child and wonder what you did before her/him. You love her endlessly – to the moon and back … even when she’s too much to handle. ¬†You teach her to play, walk, read, eat etc. You changer endless (cloth) diapers, wash umpteen loads of laundry, clean up food off the floor, scrub stains from clothing, cuddle, hug and sooth her when she is under the weather.¬†You love her beyond anything you can imagine.

And then you have baby #2!!!!!

Lilly and Hilary February 2013 - so much love, xo.

Lilly and Hilary February 2013 – so much love, xo.

You prepare her to become a BIG sister for a few months and the changes that will come.  You know what to expect this time around but nothing prepares you for the love you have to split between 2 children.

How do you do it? ¬†How do you care for your newborn, who’s needs are so great yet continue to care for your 2.5 year old who’s needs are so much more … so different?

How do you split your love? Does it just happen?

Mommy guilt sets in. You feel guilty that you no longer have all the time in the world for your 1st child because baby #2 is here now. You don’t expect to feel guilty about your new family and lifestyle but somehow you do. You’ve made the change as a family but the guilt sets in.

Mommy guilt – guilt in general sucks. It means you feel you have done something wrong but in reality you haven’t. The guilt for wanting 5 minutes to pee on your own; the guilt of a healthy pregnancy/baby; feeling guilty for wanting to go for a 20 minute run on your own; or that you want to sleep all night long and not get up to feed your little one and last but not least the guilt when you see your first-born while at the hospital with your second baby and realizing her life is about to change whether she likes it or not.

Guilt sucks and it will suck you in if you let it. You put it on yourself, no one put’s it on You.

So, how do you split your love for two children? Is there a right answer to this question or is it just life and you make it happen? ¬†Do you curb your guilt because your kids are more important than feeling guilty? I don’t have the answers to the questions but I do have two children that I love dearly. ¬†More than I could ever imagine a few years ago. I love my life, my two daughters, my husband, family and friends. I couldn’t ask for anything more. Okay, maybe a little more sleep.¬†

Little sisters

Little sisters

So, I sit here writing about how I am going to split my love between our two beautiful girls and I figure it will let itself just happen over time.  Neither will suffer without love, neither will notice that I am trying to balance both a toddler and newborn, neither will feel loved any less. Neither will know I am trying to balance my love.

As for the guilt, I’ll get over that and lose myself in a good long, hard run one of these days and it will slide off my shoulders and into the path I just ran. I can’t stress over splitting my love for each girl but I can shower them both with love every chance I get. Sometimes together and sometimes on their own.

The best thing about having a toddler and newborn is watching our oldest shower her little sister with love. At one week old, big sister Lilly has given Hilary more kisses, hugs and¬†cuddles and love than a parent could ask for. She even sang Hilary “Happy Birthday” the night she was born with enthusiasm and gusto! Grandad caught it on video!¬†

I’ve never asked my parents how they split their love between three children. I’ve always felt equally loved by both of them. I am sure in time my thoughts on this topic will be nothing but that – thoughts – as I will have lost myself in our new lifestyle and splitting my love will just happen.¬†And that’s exactly what’s happening now, as I post this (March 2013).

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Again, I am not sharing this because I need a family member, friend or follower to write (or call) me to say that I’m doing a great job and not to worry. ¬†I am simply writing this as this is what I felt one day and now I am ready to share it.¬†

Do you have multiple children?

How do you “share” your love?

Your thoughts?

Postpartum Baby Belly Workout #sweatpink

Wow, today Hilary is 7 weeks old….that went fast.

I’ve started my arm workout today and it was really easy to fit in – even with both daughters at home (Lilly was sick). She was relaxing and Hilary was asleep so I picked up my 5 pound weights and did a few sets of each. Not sure if the bones in my back liked the workout as they kept making noises. Maybe it’s because they haven’t been worked out in a while.

Other than that,¬†I haven’t been doing much in the way of exercise. I took the girls for a short walk (in the cold weather today) but haven’t managed to get out for a run. We are still working on Hilary taking a bottle and have only been successful once. Life sure is busy with a new-born and toddler even when our oldest goes to daycare, my 24 hour day go by fast so I need to fit in short workouts here and there until I can get out running.

I am fully committed to working out and running since I got the A-Okay from my Doctor last week. I recently came across this little workout and am putting it into action, as I have a little baby belly to get rid of before I start moving into some intense workouts.

Check out the video/workout: Dr. Oz – The Baby Belly Workout. It’s only 2:20 long and easy to do anytime of the day.

postpartum belly tiger stripes

What workouts did you do postpartum?

Did you jump right into workouts or build up over time?

How did you fit in your workouts with a newborn (and more children)?

Postpartum Life

Well, it’s been 1 month since sweet Hilary was born – hard to believe! I took a little break from blogging in December as it’s busy with a newborn, toddler, company, Christmas and being on my own but I’ll slowly get back into it AND start working out and blogging more about that too! Oh and the photo’s are not flattering but whatever, I just had a baby.

Week 1:

Dec 3rd ¬†Hilary was born and I instantly lost 20 pounds. No, she wasn’t 20 pounds. More like 7lbs 14oz but there was blood loss, fluid loss, the placenta etc. Of course this day I was rather sore from giving birth naturally but I wasn’t prepared for the strain on my muscles in the week to come.

As I mentioned in my birth story part 2, I use the bed railings as a way to “help” push the baby out. Stupid idea! I guess I just needed to hold onto something and pull. Well, my arms and back muscles were all strained for a full week. My abdominal muscles ached with great pain also from pushing sweet Hilary out. I was a little concerned but knew it would get better over time.

Anna - 1 week postpartum

Anna – 1 week postpartum

Week 2:

It’s amazing what a week can do. I started to feel better exactly at the one week mark…still sore from giving birth. Common – I just pushed a watermelon out of my body. My arms, back and abdominal muscles were sore but not painful aching.

Around day 10 I managed to fit into my normal clothing! No more maternity clothing needed at this point! BONUS! As for weight loss I was down 28 pounds (I gained 42 pounds with Hilary!!!!)

Anna - 2 weeks postpartum

Anna – 2 weeks postpartum

Week 3

Christmas was upon us and family visiting from England. It was a great holiday but busy. Lilly was a little off track and challenging to get to bed and for her to listen to us. It’s a work in progress. I also gained a few pounds back and that’s okay the bad eating has slowed down and will stop soon.

Hilary and I are having challenges nursing. (With Lilly it took us 2 months to get her to latch properly because she was born premature). Hilary was ready to eat when she came out but we still had a few problems. We have a great lactation consultant here and we’ve been to the¬†Osteopath¬†once – they work¬†miracles!

Week 4:

I sit here writing this post as quickly as I can because Hilary is napping for who know’s how long.

I’ve done NO exercise at this point and with the holidays I’ve gain a few pounds back but that’s okay I’m still in my normal clothing. I actually feel great about what I look like and physically too. Exercise is on the horizon and running isn’t soon far off.

Exercise plan: start walking at an indoor track next week (as it’s bloody cold out for a newborn right now), Running to start towards the end of January and getting more focused in February, good old Jillian Michael’s DVD’s and some weights/abdominal exercises. I’ve been writing down my fitness goals and new year resolutions and will blog about those soon.

Hilary is over 9lbs now, eating well and sleeping well too – lucky us.

No one tells you how hard it is with 2 little ones and apparently I forgot what it’s like to have a newborn. I’ve had to figure out new ways of managing both of them at the same time, which I’ll blog about soon….it ain’t easy.

Anna - 4 weeks postpartum and Lilly.

Anna – 4 weeks postpartum and Lilly.

Hilary’s Birth Story – Part 2

To get the first part of the story, check out Part 1 here.

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Hilary’s birth story – Part 2.

I started pushing as my body had decided it was time to get things moving on. This was by far way more painful than it was with Lilly. I later learned after Hilary was born that she was face up – which usually means major back pain and also more painful. I’m sure glad the waited to tell me that after she came out!

As each contraction started, I would suck back as much gas I as could and then push. For some reason I decided to hold on to the hospital bed railings above my head and was pulling down on them as hard as I could. Why? I don’t know, I guess I thought it would help me push the baby out. Well, the only thing it did was give me strained arm and back muscles for a week afterwards. Bad idea. With Lilly I held onto Sai’s index finger through each contraction – not this time, I think he was secretly thankful.

At one point in between contractions I remember giving everyone a thumbs up to say that I was doing okay and my thumb shook uncontrolably…I then said “this F#$%ing HURTS! They all had a good laugh. (Hurt was an understatement but they got the point).

I pushed for about an hour and then she was out and on my chest just like that at 3:07 am on Monday December 3rd. I looked at my husband and he said “it’s another girl”….and of course the tears started. I couldn’t believe how much she looked like Lilly – it was crazy.

We stayed in the delivery room (I forgot to mention this was the same room as with Lilly’s birth) until 6:30 am and then off we went to our private and extremely small/awkward room. We were all exhausted as we had no sleep since Saturday night/Sunday morning.

Hospital Room

Around 7, my husband decided to head home and get Lilly so she could meet her little sister. By 8:30 am, I decided it was a good time to get up and get moving around so we walked around the maternity ward a little and back to our room. I saw my husband and Dad and realised that Lilly was with them and I started to cry…

I couldn’t believe how emotional it was to see my big girl knowing that her life was about to change with the addition of her little sister. She was so excited to see us! HILARY, she shouted and gave Hilary her monkey. It was love at first sight for Lilly, an extremely proud big sister.

BIG sister Lilly

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Monday Dec 3rd

Lilly left the hospital with my Dad to head to the sitter’s as we wanted to keep things as normal as we could. She sure wasn’t happy about leaving us but managed to settle once she reached the sitter’s house. We on the other hand visited with my mother and father, tried to sleep a little, cuddle with our newborn and I took a shower. Oh my, that shower made me feel like a million bucks.

Monday night was a little more challenging than I had expected. We decided my husband would go home and help my Dad with Lilly and give her a little normality to her night and morning. I on the other had fed Hilary almost every hour from 7 pm until 2 am with no sleep in between. It was rough. The nurse ended up taking Hilary out of my room and cuddled with her so I could get an hour worth of sleep – that helped a lot. I did this again at 5:30 am for just over an hour. With Lilly we had to wake her every 3 hours to feed, pump etc because she was premature, however with Hilary it was feeding on demand which was a completely different concept and I don’t think I was prepared for her little cluster feeding session. We managed to live to tell the story ūüėČ

Tuesday Dec 4th (my husband’s birthday)

My Doctor came by at 7 am to check things out and see how we were doing. She asked if we wanted to go home later that day after some blood work was completed or stay another night. I decided to go home. Again, with Lilly, we stayed in the hospital Sunday night until Friday afternoon – it was the longest week of my life and I did not enjoy being there so long. When I had the option to leave, I took it. We left around 2:30 pm on Tuesday and went to buy a birthday cake for my husband to celebrate his birthday and Hilary’s ūüôā

Hilary going home

Hilary going home

Though this birth was longer and more painful it was completely worth it in the end. I had a natural birth, my family Doctor delivered, we had great nurses, my husband was there, Lilly was happy and safe with friends and family and we had a healthy 7 lbs 14 oz baby girl. It couldn’t have been a better experience.

Hilary Elise Dec 3rd 2012

Hilary Elise Dec 3rd 2012

The End.

Don’t forget to check back for my postpartum post in a few days.

Happy New Year!

Wow, hard to believe that another year is hours away!

2013, what will you bring us?

It’s been a great year for our family, lots of changes – good and bad.

A few things Piper’s Run was up to in 2012:

  • I was a single parent for 7 months while my husband was away in PEI. He was studying to become a Paramedic (Mission accomplished). Lilly and I made a few trips to beautiful PEI.

 

My top 3 favourite Motivation Monday’s:

Pinned Image

  • And, of course the arrival of our second daughter in December, Hilary Elise:

Hilary Dec 3rd 2012 - A

It’s been quite the year for our family and Piper’s Run. A big thank you to those who have followed us and¬†commented on our posts. We are sure looking forward to 2013, setting new goals, running¬†lots, trying new workouts and new adventure with our girls.

Happy New Year from Anna at Piper’s Run.

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