Monday, March 31, 2014

Lombok - as a family of four

We just got back from our first holiday, alone, as a family of four. We had traveled to the US and also traveled around Western Australia with my parents, but we hadn't done it alone. And believe it or not, it was so not that bad. It was fun, even!

We went to Lombok, an island next to Bali in Indonesia. We went when I was seven months pregnant with Samara and again when she was four months old and this time. We have loved each trip there and found it to be a deeply relaxing and beautiful place.

Since we hadn't been on holiday in a few months and I was nervous about how it would work with both kids in one room, we kinda splurged and stayed in a place nicer than we usually go for. When I saw Jeeva Klui on Trip Advisor, I told Matt that we were going no matter what. And it was just as good or better than I expected. For the first two nights we had our own two storey villa with a private pool, an outdoor bathtub and shower and another bathroom and shower inside. It was so nice to put the kids to bed and then have the downstairs and outdoors to ourselves. (Thanks to Shana for the tip to put the baby to bed first and then put Sam to bed quietly - it totally worked!) The resort had a beautiful infinity pool right at the ocean, which made for unbelievable views and not a lot of motivation to leave!

Our first day we ended up calling Effendi, a driver whom Deeksha and Rajeev had introduced us to on our first trip there, and he took us up to the monkey forest. But when we got there it was pouring, so we keep driving and he invited us to his home. It was fascinating to see his super modest home, meet his lovely wife, inlaws and children (two of the three). They were soooo welcoming to us, preparing coffee and even knocking down a young coconut from their tree for us to drink. Samara's description of the visit today was "Everyone was trying to carry me." They were, and she was a champ. At some point I think she was so overwhelmed with all of the attention, she just started running back and forth from one house to another. On the way back we got stuck in major traffic for a Balinese/Hindu holiday - hundreds of people were walking down the street with their prayer paraphernalia, and we didn't move for about 45 minutes. It was beautiful. Sam was waving out the car window at everyone and most people actually waved back or at least pointed and smiled.

The second day, after the second night, we had to switch rooms (we booked only a few weeks in advance, so they were full...), so we decided to leave the hotel in between. We drove to a beautiful temple on the water and spent the entire rest of the day at the pool and beach, relaxing. It was absolutely perfect. (ooh - as I noticed my previous post - the woman at the spa made sure to tell me that I can't get a massage if I'm an expectant mother. Thanks, lady.)

We are working on our return trip...

In other news, not much has been going on, as we have been deeply into our routine. Sam is becoming much more of a kid - able to do so much on her own, have great conversations, excellent questions...she's so much fun. She's swimming with her head above the water as well, which makes my life less stressful while swimming with both kids. Elie is extremely mobile, has a particular fondness for balls and garbage cans, loves to eat (ANYTHING!), is sweet and a bit clingy and still sucks at sleeping during the day. But it turns out he's a really easy baby. Life has been good.

Photos aren't in order but I'm too tired to organize. Sorry!
Effendi's wife and Elie (sooooo tired Elie!!!)

Effendi's mother in law and Elie

Preparing coffee for us

Effendi's daughter

Effendi's father in law

Seeing us off

Stuck in holiday traffic - but it was beautiful and entertaining. Sam waved to everyone

Balinese/Hindu temple visit

Checking out the temple

Major crash on the porch of our second room

Family photo!! (thanks to our new friend, Lucy!)

Both kids in the ocean...for a minute at least. But Elie didn't like the waves and Sam said the shells were hurting her feet.

They preferred the pool

Morning walk on the beach

Our own private pool! With white noise from a waterfall, even, so Elie could sleep

Sam running up and down in the village

Check out the Balinese white dude

Chillaxing, rolling around the couch

Daddy daughter moment

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

PSA: Just Don't Ask Until You're SURE

If you see someone who you think might be pregnant, unless you have heard from that person or a super reliable source that they are indeed pregnant, please don't say anything about it. As I have had this experience three times in the last five days, it's starting to get to me.

All incidences have happened in yoga clothes, which are tighter than my normal clothes, so that can be a bit of consolation. Thursday evening in yoga class I had a new teacher, and at the start of the class, with about sixty people in the class, she looked at me and said, "Are you...are you pregnant?" I knew what was coming after the first part, as I had seen her looking at my belly before class. I should have interrupted her before she said the word, but I kind of wanted her to say it so that I could say no. At that moment, I wanted her to feel bad for asking. Not nice, Melanie. But not nice, yoga teacher, either. Right after that we went into breathing and relaxation "let everything go." Right - other than the question you just asked me, which sat on me the whole class. I did not let it go.

Then I was on the train home that night and a young woman stood up and pointed me towards her seat. I said, "no, thank you." She pointed again and said, "please." "No thank you," I said. Finally she pointed again and said, "I insist." "I'm not pregnant." She sat down and didn't look at me again.

Today waiting for my yoga class to begin I was speaking with a young American woman. "When are you due?" I must have mis-heard. "What?" "When are you due?" "Oh, I'm not pregnant, but don't feel bad, you're not the first to think I am. You're not even the first this week." She felt awful and even apologized again after class.

People have graciously offered me their seat on the train for the last three years, though not as often as it's been the last few weeks. I usually just kinda laugh at it and move on, accepting that I don't have and will never have a flat belly (and I never had one either...let's not pretend). Last week I was annoyed that it was socially acceptable for people to assume this or ask - blaming the askers. But the one tonight put me over the edge. It gave me motivation during leg lifts and other core exercises during the class. It will give me motivation with my diet (which is extremely healthy but could make a few changes) and maybe even to start doing some cardio (though I'm not sure when).

But - really - I just want to carry on, with my body as it is, doing what I do, without people bringing it up. Yeah - I had a baby six months ago. Out of my life, six months is nothing. But six months of having that baby out of me is a long time. Should my body look more like I was never pregnant? I don't fucking know. But I also don't want to care, so stop bringing it up. Just Don't Ask Until you're SURE. It's bugging me.