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Sydney Jane

Sydney Jane

Dear Sydney,

These are your last days as a baby. Saturday, your first birthday, marks the beginning of your toddler years. Cliche as it may be, this year has flown by. Around this time last year I was at the doctor getting my 39 week checkup. I had been having tons of Braxton-Hicks contractions but didn’t really pay attention to them. We spent our last night as a family of 3, September 22, putting Reid to bed and having our good friend, John, over for dinner since I had made a pretty kickass lasagna the day before. I started having contractions, but I could mostly talk through them and they weren’t incredibly painful. I don’t think John even noticed. But I didn’t eat much at dinner, which should have been a sign that your presence was imminent.

On the morning of your birthday, I woke up and got Reid ready for school like usual. Again, some contractions, but nothing crazy. Once we got in the car, though, I started paying more attention. Reid asked me questions (he is very chatty, your brother) and I couldn’t answer right away because I was breathing through the discomfort. In all honesty- I probably shouldn’t have been driving. But I was in denial because your brother was 5 days late (and was only born due to an induction) and your due date was 6 days away. I was still walking, talking, cooking, crossfitting. Surely you weren’t on your way! When I got home, I called your grandfather and asked him to pick up Reid from school. I told him “I’m not in labor or anything, but it hurts to drive.” Silly me. I let our doula, Rachel, know what was happening. She laughed and said it sounds like early labor and to pay attention. Your dad asked if he should come home at lunch and I said no, I’m not in labor. This is probably a false alarm. You know, as I continued to have regular contractions every 5-7 minutes.

Your dad did come home around 11, and I told him that he should go grab Reid from school since he was home. I also started to consider a visit to the hospital- just to make sure. My dad was on his way over to take Reid back to your grandparents’ house once he got home from school. And in the 40 minutes that it took to pick up Reid, things escalated. QUICKLY. I couldn’t talk through the contractions anymore.Your poor grandfather walked into the house to me rolling around on the couch, moaning like a cow. I think I scared him but at that point, I didn’t really care. I called your dad on his way home and scream-asked when was he coming home? Luckily he was 3 minutes away. That seemed like too long. We got in the car against my will – I said it hurt too much to move, let’s just have the baby here – and drove to the hospital. Longest 20 minute ride of my LIFE.

I got a mini-epidural at the hospital after waiting about 90 minutes. I could still feel contractions but they weren’t as painful and I was happy again. Then, it started to wear off. I asked for another dose and the doctor told me that I was too close and would be pushing soon. That was NOT what I wanted to hear. Rachel had met us at the hospital several hours earlier and suggested I roll onto my side to see it that would help things move along. And boy- did it ever. I rolled onto my right side, and 4 contractions later you were here. Both your dad and Rachel started putting gloves on as they yelled out the door “I think we are ready!” The doctor nearly didn’t even make it in to catch you! We were so happy to finally meet you. I was exhausted and elated at the same time.

You are one of the happiest babies I’ve ever met. You also have one of the worst cases of FOMO I’ve ever seen. You love people-watching and playing with Reid. No matter what he does, you laugh. You adore him. You still hate naps but have slept through the night since about 3 months, so I’ll take it. You’ve developed a habit of crawling around with toys in your mouth like a dog. You have zero stranger-danger, and give almost everyone a smile. In your early days, you HATED the hours of 8pm-10pm and would cry for 2 hours like clockwork. Until a couple months ago, you didn’t like baths. You love climbing and stairs. You are easily entertained as long as there is something to look at. You have beautiful blue eyes that grab nearly everyone’s attention.

This year has been a wonderful challenge. Thank you for bringing unprecedented joy into our lives. I love you with my whole heart.

34 trips around the sun 

34 trips around the sun 

I turned 34 over the weekend. It was a pretty tame event- being on this elimination diet cuts down on a lot of party favorites, like champagne and cake. I ended up tweaking a paleo recipe and made my own damn cake-  carrot cake layered cheesecake. It. Was. Phenomenal.


It was so good. I couldn’t believe it! And, my family liked it too, and they are not ones to experiment with alternative flours or gluten-free anything. So that was definitely a win.

It was kind of weird to celebrate without my usual indulgences though. I’m a big fan of “go ahead, it’s your birthday.” Although I have trouble putting the brakes on- it can turn into “go ahead, it’s your birthday weekend/week/month” and things kind of snowball from there. So, aside from my little cake detour, there wasn’t anything off my elimination diet plan. And the birthday cake didn’t have any ingredients that were not allowed, but the honey/maple syrup content was higher than I should have had in a day.

But hey, it’s my birthday. 🎉

This past year has been a good one. I spent half of it pregnant, which was worth it for the end result but not something I care to do again, especially during the summer. We did some traveling, mostly for weddings or to see family, and expanded our own family from 3 to 4. There were some rough moments (see: third trimester during the hottest summer in years, also threenager tantrums) but overall things were good.

This upcoming year I would like to focus a little more on myself. That sounds kind of selfish, but I spent about 90% of my brain power thinking about Kirk or the kids. I’m currently writing this on my phone from nap jail (aka the glider in the nursery) because Sydney won’t sleep without being held this afternoon and my tiny girlfriend is a hot mess without a nap.

So yeah, I don’t do a lot for myself. I’d love to meet a friend for coffee or a drink more often, maybe actually blow dry my hair more than twice a month, get manicures regularly, that sort of thing. I find myself wanting to do things other than talk to people shorter than my hip, and that is ok! I felt a little guilty at first, because I chose to quit my job and stay at home. But I think that 34 is the Year of Sarah (not unlike the Summer of George?). Looking forward to what this year has in store for me (starting with a cooler summer and a drink by the pool)!