Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Realizing My Mistakes

I got a facial today and it was just wonderful. I'm really trying to use good, but inexpensive products to repair the all the sun damage to my skin, especially on my face. The facial was a nice treat to tie this new regiment together. I've been doing this for almost a year. My husband and friends are impressed to see that I've consistently used my morning cleanser, lotion with SPF, and eye cream every day. I even use a night cream most evenings and a DNA repairing mask once a week.
I was a swimmer most of my life, and would pretty much spent the rest of my day after swim practice, at the pool. Combine that with years I spent as a lifeguard, swim instructor, and pool manager and you have a recipe for skin cancer. I have realized that even though I used sunscreen and used the umbrella on the lifeguard stand, I really didn't do enough and you are just started to see the effects on my skin. This last year I've been obsessed with putting sunscreen on Love Bug, even for short walks. Finally when she was about a month old, I thought, "Hey! What about my skin?" And there my new obsession was born. I'm trying to apply all the health and safety rules to my life, that I would automatically apply to Love Bug's in the quest to be the best mother I could be.

This is my progress so far...

Good things we were already doing...

1. We already used seat belts, helmets, and looked before crossing the street. We're big on safety, so no need to change that.

2. We also get physicals every year, teeth cleanings twice a year, and eye exams every few years. If there are any problems or other tests needed, we get follow ups regularly. Our shots are up to date.

3. Our final gold star is for lifestyle. We avoid smoke, and drink very moderately.

Some things I've changed this year...

4. Skin care- Using SPF on everyone in our family, even in the winter, and using repairing products on myself for the sun damage I have.

5. TV watching- My pediatrician in France recommended from the beginning that Love Bug not watch any TV until she is 2 years old. Sure enough, the American Academy of Pediatrics Book agreed so I instituted a no TV rule. Amazingly, I found that I got more done than I did even before I had a baby, found more creative things to occupy Love Bug, and we discovered some great new music, because we listened to the radio or CDs at least half of the day! Most of my friends still think I'm crazy, but check out this article about Baby Ein.stein videos and maybe you'll be convinced too. Only watching TV a few hours a week has changed my life.

Next are the things that I'm in the process of changing, but haven't quite accomplished yet...

6. Prayer- We are working to make prayer a family habit. I pray individually, as does my husband, but we need to pray at meals, at family activities, and make it a part of our day.

7. Healthy Eating- Love Bug eats wonderfully. Myself and B... not as well, but we're working on it. We have actually cut out soda and all sugary candy already. We still indulge in desserts and processed foods, but at a much lower frequency. It must be working because I've slowly lost about 10 pounds from extra 30 I was carrying after having Love Bug. (Yes, I gained 50 pounds... it's awful!) Our plan is to continue to cut these foods out, eat fresh foods, and drink more water.

8. Exercise- My husband runs, but I need to do more. I take walks, but we used to play tennis, rollerblade, and ski together a lot. We need to start making these things a habit again, because I want our kids to see exercise as a positive constant in our household and something fun we do as a family.

Where I'm not doing so well...

9. Sleep- I do not get enough sleep. Neither does my husband. I try and nap with Love Bug, but that's just to catch up on sleep we missed the night before. I need to come up with a plan and commit to getting better sleep.

So, that's where we stand. I had this as a list in my calendar, but wanted to share it with you. Hopefully I can keep you up to date on our progress... "as parents, changing our lives for the better, as we discover ways to raise our children well".

3 comments:

Cheri said...

You are doing such a terrific job - keep working at the healthier eating, especially with fruits and veggies.

Believe me, it's much better to get children conditioned to eating that way early. I'm speaking from a what not to do angle here!

carrie said...

Abbey,

Thanks for sharing your list with us. It's like the title of my post yesterday, there's "always room for improvement."

I have so many things I want to work on!

Susan said...

That is a great list! I am working on stuff too. I will be posting about that too soon. I am trying to cut my time on the blog!