So, a few years ago I sent the following email to my cousin in LA:
“My dog got into a fight with a coyote outside my front door and I’m wearing jeggings from Target, so yeah, I’d say the move to suburban Colorado is going OK”
And you know, all kidding aside, the move to Colorado IS going Ok. Better than, even. (I love that there is wilderness for my dog to romp in; those jeggings from Target were, frankly, totally awesome.) It’s absolutely different than living in the middle of a city, but it’s become more and more clear to me and us that that the ‘different’ is also ‘better’. Colorado fits our family very well, and as long as I can keep my career momentum up and moving – which, so far so good – I suspect we’ll be here for quite a while.
Things ARE different, however. Example: This past weekend we went up to the Crested Butte area to get away and celebrate Mike’s birthday. Mike took advantage of the steps-away river to do many hours of fly fishing, and since our dog has not really embraced the concept that fly fishing is a solo sport – or, at the very least, a sport not aided by him splashing around – I decided to take the pup to one of the trailheads nearby and do a little hiking.
Now, we were fairly deep into the middle of nowhere. Crested Butte is five hours out of Denver, and we were 20 miles out of Crested Butte, so there was basically river and national forest land, and not much else. Which is my way of saying: given that I’ve encountered bears and mountain lions walking around my suburban home, it seemed likely there would be wildlife encounters hiking around the middle of nowhere, especially during bear season. So. The smart thing to do, of course, was bring a gun. Which is how I found myself with my .45 clipped to the waistband my running shorts, straining ever so slightly against my 26 weeks pregnant belly:
City Liz did not have a side holster. Or a .45. Or consider using either one of them (“I do not have a gun, let alone many guns, that would necessitate an entire RACK”). But City Liz also didn’t get to go hiking in Gunnison National Forest, which, frankly, is too bad for her.
(Side story re guns (I’m sure I’ve told this before?): When Mike deployed in 2008 we put all his stuff in storage and I subletted a tiny apartment from a friend so that I could live off just my salary and we could bank Mike’s pay, saving for the home we eventually bought. During one of our Skype conversations while he was deployed, we somehow started talking about guns and I mentioned: “Yeah, I don’t know how i feel about having guns in the house” and he goes “Well, there’s two under your bed right now, so I’d figure it out pretty quickly. [pause] Don’t you EVER clean?”)
(I *do* clean, JUST NOT UNDER THE BED WHO DOES THAT)
Anyway! So, yeah, as noted above, I’m about 26 weeks pregnant. (Maybe more. I don’t know: my doctors and I disagree on my due date by about 5 days, so they always think I’m about a week more pregnant than I am, and depending on how pregnant I feel on any given day I agree with them or not.) Anyway ANYWAY: It would appear that 26 weeks is when the wheels COMPLETELY FALL OFF THE WAGON w/r/t pregnancy activity. LAST week, my friend Laurel was in town and thought a fun way to celebrate her third trimester would be to hike the Incline. (The Incline: a mile trek up a mountain that used to be an old rail car route. The rail car is gone; the tracks remain. It is about 2000 feet in elevation gain in that mile, and then there is a four mile switch back trail on the back side of the mountain to get down.) And you know what? It WAS fun! We had a great time, made it up the mountain and down the switch back and felt great. Granted, it was SLOW, much slower than the other times I’ve climbed it (“other times” = once. I’ve climbed it one other time), but all in all it was a nice day and I loved catching up with an old friend and talking pregnancy and fitness and totally felt like myself, just a bit more lumbery.
Flash forward to the hike mentioned above, just a week later: I found myself out in the woods with my dog and my gun and thinking “What the hell? Why am I out here just WALKING? You know what what I’d rather be doing? SITTING. And NOT WALKING. MOVING IS HARD. THIS IS STUPID.
So. We turned back after a few miles and went back to the house, where I did this for the next many hours:
And yes, I know that activity is good for the baby, but you know what else is good? Literacy. Literacy is good for the baby.
(Speaking of that book: it was lovely, and I do recommend it, HOWEVER: I think I am too pregnant to have read it. It tells you right up front this is a story about a Jewish girl from Austria in 1938 who is sent to live in England as a housemaid because, well, you know: Jewish girl. Austria. 1938. And while it is a nice little love story and period piece and it gets very Downton Abby-esq, there’s also, you know… parents sending their children to opposite ends of the globe in order to avoid the horrific war that is coming! Promising them they’ll all meet up when in fact they know they probably won’t! Siblings ripped away from each other! Parents with no way to contact their kids! GAH! I’m not entirely sure why I thought a Jewish family in a World War Two themed story would end up with a happy ending (spoiler: …no), but nevertheless I found myself ugly crying at the end, all WAR IS HECK OMG. Having said ALL THAT, it *is* a good story and I did enjoy it, just… maybe not so much while pregnant, is the thing.)
Anyway. Maybe 26 weeks is the beginning of the end for pregnancy working out, maybe I’m just tired and needed to take a break. Who knows. We’ll see how tomorrow goes, and the day after that, etc. In the meantime, imagine me near a river in the woods, with my man and my dog, happy as I’ve ever been. It’s a good life, ya know?