Ep. 165: Timing Your Next Baby

By: Cassy Joy Garcia
Fed & Fit
Fed & Fit

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On today's episode, I'm with reverse listener Erin about some potential things to consider when planning for more babies.

Journal Article: Autism Spectrum Disorder and Birth Spacing

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Episode 165 Transcription

Cassy Joy: Welcome back to another episode of the Fed and Fit podcast. I am your host, Cassy Joy Garcia. And we are back with another reverse interview. Today is going to be a really interesting conversation. I have personally been really looking forward to it.

We are joined today by Erin. Let me tell you a little bit about Erin. She is a Packer fan, born and raised in the great state of Minnesota. She puts her teaching degree to good use working in youth ministry, coaching at a gym, and very recently becoming a Beautycounter consultant. Woop!

This January, Erin and her husband welcomed the lovely Emma Joy into the world after a longer than hoped for journey to parenthood. Erin is passionate about understand how treating our bodies well physically, nutritionally, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, can bring us into more harmony with who we are created to be.

Ooh, I’m so excited to talk with you today, Erin! Welcome to the show!

Erin: Thanks for having me. I’m excited to chat.

Cassy Joy: Oh my gosh, me too! She’s been so patient with me. We’ve gone back and forth and had to reschedule a couple of times. So I really appreciate you carving out some time.

Ok, let’s jump right into it! These reverse interviews, I like to just hand the baton over. You’ve got the reins for the show. I know that we’re going to chat about one thing in particular, but if you want to share anything more about yourself, or dive in with any other questions. It’s all yours, girl.

Erin: Yeah! I’m excited to chat today. It’s funny. I’ve been listening to this podcast, the Fed and Fit podcast for a while. And kind of seeing your stuff on Instagram. And I remember it was like the picture; your pregnancy announcement of Gus and the little bun in the actual oven. It was probably pretty soon after that I realized I was pregnant. And I was like; oh my gosh! This woman is very similar to me, only in Texas instead of Minnesota. So it’s been cool just to hear about and kind of follow along as we had this pregnancy journey on a very similar timeline.

And actually, there was a reverse interview a couple of weeks ago where you talked about how you have some allegiance to the Packers, or whatever. And I was like; oh my gosh. That’s why we can be friends. Because the Packers are the best.

Cassy Joy: {laughs} They are the best.

Erin: Yeah. It’s funny, my 94-year-old grandmother; or she’s 95. I can’t remember. Is the reason I’m a Packers fan. So I’m technically, on my mom’s side, a first-generation Minnesotan. My mom was born in Wisconsin, my grandma is from Wisconsin. And my husband likes to say that she was a very good brain washer. So she got me on the Packers side young.

Cassy Joy: That is so fun. I don’t know if you heard this in that show, but we don’t actually have any ties geographically.

Erin: Right. But didn’t you say your dad bought shares for Christmas presents or something?

Cassy Joy: Yes.

Erin: Or did I make that up?

Cassy Joy: Nope. You nailed it. That’s exactly it. In case y’all haven’t heard the story, my dad was blessed with three daughters. And he is just the perfect dad for three strong women. Because we still tossed the football. But I remember me and my sisters, we love college football. We’re all Texas A&M Aggies, and I can really get into some college football.

But I lost a lot of interest with pro ball. Because I just didn’t have a direct tie. If I lived in Dallas, Texas, then maybe I’d care about the Cowboys. But I just didn’t feel an affiliation. So one year for Christmas, he’s like, I’m going to get my daughters to watch pro football with me! {laughs}

So he bought for Christmas; the Packers had opened up options to buy shares one year. And so he went and bought each of us, I think, one share, or half a share, or whatever the amount is. He packed it all up for us, and gave us a beanie. And now every year at Christmas, he gives us a piece of Packer paraphernalia. And it worked, because now I’m all in! {laughs} I’m rooting for those boys. So it was a lot of fun.

Anyway. I could talk about them all the time. But I’m really thrilled to chat with you today. And it does feel like we’re birds of a feather in a lot of ways. Now we work together, also, in the safer beauty world. I’m excited to chat about today.

So if you wouldn’t mind giving folks kind of an introduction of your initial inquiry.

Cassy Joy: Welcome back to another episode of the Fed and Fit podcast. I am your host, Cassy Joy Garcia. And I am so thrilled to bring you today’s episode.

Today’s show is made possible because of our friends at Thrive Market! Thrive Market is an online market place on a mission to make healthy living easy and affordable for everyone. You can shop for thousands of the best-selling organic foods and natural products at 20-50% below traditional retail prices.

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Erin: Yeah. So, I had heard about some interesting research that kind of talked about correlation between gaps between pregnancies; too short of gap, or too long of gap between pregnancies. Researchers are seeing some correlation between that and some higher autism; or autism spectrum disorder rates in the population.

Actually, my mom is a clinical nurse specialist. Which is a Master’s level nurse in mental health nursing. So this was in her professional journal that she gets as a part of her work that she does. And she, just throughout my pregnancy was always forwarding me things about pregnancy or whatever. Very much with the caveat of; read this if it will service you. Ignore it if it causes you more anxiety.

This was one of the things that I thought was interesting; that people are starting to ask those questions about why we see some of those higher rates of things in schools. I know just being around teenagers in the work that I do at the church, we know that there’s a lot more diagnoses in terms of autism spectrum disorder. But also just ADHD, anxiety, depression, all those kinds of things. Seem to be really high right now.

So it is interesting to kind of ask that question of why. And I think this could be seen as; maybe there’s something about how our bodies react to and are depleted by pregnancies, and how long they take to recover from that. And it’s kind of maybe a newer thing that we can actually think about controlling how the gaps between our pregnancies. With all that goes into modern medicine; where as before we maybe couldn’t have as much control over that. Maybe now we can, if we choose to introduce certain things into our bodies.

Cassy Joy: It’s a really fascinating conversation. When Erin first emailed me this, I had never thought of it. And it’s definitely something that pinged a light in my brain. Because if we can, we would like to keep having more babies. And I kind of; after having one baby, I’m like; well, let’s go ahead and have 12. {laughs} Because this is awesome.

I’m joking about 12, but definitely more. My husband, he’s probably in ear shot right now, and may have just cringed when he heard me say that. It’s a very, very interesting topic of conversation. And essentially, I’m going to read you guys the lay summary. And I will link to this article on the show notes for today. So if you head over to www.FedandFit.com and pull up the show notes for this episode, we’ll have this linked there.

But the summary that they’ve got, it’s called the lay summary, is that:

Autism Spectrum Disorder and Birth Spacing

We investigated whether the amount of time between pregnancies was associated with autism spectrum disorder or other developmental disabilities in children. ASD (autism spectrum disorder) was increased in second and later-born children who were conceived less than 18 months or 60 or more months after the mother's previous birth. Other DDs (developmental disabilities) were not associated with birth spacing.

So it’s really interesting. And of course, if you click on the PDF, you can read the full analysis. Or the full story. But it’s fascinating. It seems they tested; the sample selection, they started with 3200 children. So it’s a really wide based. And it’s interesting. I encourage you guys, if it’s something that you are curious about digging into.

But it brings up an interesting question. Because I’m definitely not an expert on these things. And at this point, Erin could probably teach me more than I could offer to the conversation. But it does bring up a really interesting topic of conversation. And that is wellness for our bodies going into baby making. And I had my dear friend, Liz Wolfe, on the podcast several weeks back, now. So go ahead and scroll through the archives.

We had one long conversation, which I broke up into two episodes. One was preconception best practices. Really, what to do to prepare your body for pregnancy. And the other was pregnancy best practices. What are some of the things we can do to keep nurturing a healthy baby. And a healthy body for mama.

And, Erin, I don’t know if you’ve run into this in your circles, as well. It’s interesting because these aren’t; wellness and really thinking about filling up your nutritional tank before having a baby isn’t something, I don’t think, that comes to the top of the mind for a lot of folks. When they think they want to go ahead and just start having kids, they say, “let’s just start doing it! Let’s make a baby. And the body will figure it out.”

And while that is true for a large part of it. We think about breastfeeding, right? Breastmilk is a perfect food. And even if your diet isn’t perfect, breastmilk still finds a way to have a really great, complete nutritional profile for your baby. I think the body is very similar. But there are areas where we really do need to supplement with strategic nutrients. Whether that comes from food, or from a supplement. As you already said.

It’s interesting. Have you encountered anybody in your circle that this is top of mind for them?

Erin: I don’t know, necessarily. It’s interesting. I feel like I’ve shared this information, and kind of the reaction has been, “Oh that’s interesting.” And then not really a whole lot of reaction. And I think that probably is because we all; we don’t really talk a lot in this country about family planning, in general, and what that looks like.

The whole business of, you have to wait until 12 weeks to even share that your pregnant. There’s just a lot of things that I feel like; I’ve never lived in another country, but I’ve heard it’s different in other countries. Just about fertility and the wellness aspect of fertility. Or when you're trying, or when you start to try. It’s not as much talked about in this country.

And it’s also the hard question. I know there is so much that goes into planning your family besides just your body being physically ready, like you were saying, Cassy. And I think those things are easier to think about. We have a car seat that’s not expired yet, so we should get two uses out of that car seat. We stopped paying infant rates for daycare. Daycare for older babies is a little bit cheaper. So I think maybe we think of more those practical things about money and kind of the stuff. The physical stuff we need to have in order to be prepared for a second child.

I know, me personally, I didn’t really think about what it looked like to have my body be ready to conceive until I kind of mentally was like; yup, we’re going to try having a baby. And it didn’t happen the first month.

So me being a more type A planner person, it was like; ok. What am I doing wrong, and what do I need to change? Which is not a helpful mindset. But that led me to learning a lot about the body in general. And it’s just so interesting, this idea that it really does take a lot of tiny, tiny components. Molecular biology is all over the place in terms of conception.

And my husband and I, personally, we always made this joke. But it’s kind of true. It’s like; let’s get baby number one to two years old, and then we’ll kind of decide at that point. Which kind of falls in line with this research.

I don’t even know what question I was answering. I just started talking, and now I don’t know where to go! {laughing}

Cassy Joy: {laughs} We are the same person.

Erin: {laughing}

Cassy Joy: {laughs} Oh man. That’s interesting. You know, Austin and I; y’all brace yourself. I feel like this is going to be more of a conversation kind of show. But Austin and I; we definitely would love to have kids quickly. Have our kids really looped closely in age. So much so that I have a book on my nightstand right now; it’s the birth order book. I forget who wrote it. But it’s only been sitting there staring at me for a full year. You’d think I could remember the author’s name! If you Google it, it will absolutely come up. There’s only really one guy out there talking about this right now.

But, we would love to have kids back to back to back. And thinking about it as a nutritionist; that being my field. I do understand, through practice, and through my work, and also through my own self-study, you could call it. Even going to the gym, we think about glycogen levels. We need lots of muscle glycogen, so that we have energy to burn in a workout. Right? So that’s why we try to eat carbohydrates within a certain window after a workout so we can replenish that muscle glycogen level to be ready to go for the next workout.

And this is just the closest correlation I can draw. So I think about that; and then having a baby, taking prenatal vitamins a good year before we actually conceived Graysen was a priority of mine. Really trying to clean up certain things. I ate more chicken livers, more spinach. I started taking in different kinds of food. Avoiding other kinds of food. I try to avoid things with food dyes. Things that I really wanted to fill up my nutrition bank, versus taking in things that were going to depleted it.

Now, granted, of course I still enjoyed margaritas and wine. But I didn’t go quite as crazy with them. Not crazy; but I wasn’t quite as indulgent as I had been previous parts of my life if that makes sense. All things within reason is what I thought. And it was really trying to prepare my body, to make it as healthy as possible, to make a healthy baby.

And also on the beauty front; right? On the skincare front. Wanting to reduce my toxic load as much as possible by cleaning up the ingredients I was putting on my body.

And maybe you know this. But I forget the number of toxins they found in cord blood; infant cord blood.

Erin: Oh, I don’t know. But I can imagine.

Cassy Joy: Oh, you would really resonate with this. I don’t have it top of mind. Somebody listening that’s also a Beautycounter consultant is yelling at their radio right now! {laughs} But I want to say it was upwards of 100-plus; more than that maybe. And it was not somebody who lived what they would have considered a toxic lifestyle. It’s just that we encounter so many toxins through just physical exposure, environmental toxins, things we’re putting on our body, and also the things that we’re eating.

So kind of keeping all that in mind, I spent a year trying to make my body as healthy as possible. And you know, it could have been related to that, and it could not have been related to that. Why the pregnancy was so easy, and why she’s so healthy now. And we didn’t get pregnant right away.

Part of that was I had no idea when I was ovulating. {Laughs} No clue. But I was such a stick in the mud I did not want to take an ovulation test because I wanted to be like; “No, it just happened.” {laughing}

Erin: {laughs}

Cassy Joy: Which it didn’t. And it wasn’t until I actually did use those ovulation tests. I think it was on my fourth month. And I knew I ovulated every month. But I thought; what the heck is going on? I was ovulating a good week before I thought I was.

Anyway. I missed that window. But as soon as we figured that out, we conceived Graysen. And again, it could be because I finally figured it out, and it could have been that was just when it was supposed to happen. And she’s just the baby that she was supposed to be. But, we try to control what we can control.

So having said all of that, after she was born, Austin and I put our heads together and we thought; because we wanted to be parents first before we really decided how big of a family we wanted. And it’s going to be contingent on the next baby and the baby after that. What if we have a baby who requires a heck of a lot more attention and time than Graysen. Heaven forbid something happens.

So we’re trying to play it by ear. But if we do want to have more kids, we’ve got to squeeze them together. And I thought; well, ok. Break out the chicken livers, because I’ve got to replenish those levels! Really, I was thinking I was going to be able to take a little bit of a break. And again, I’m just jabbering. I don’t know if I’m providing any value here. But it really did. All of a sudden, when I realized that based on my age, Austin’s age, and the family that we would love to have together in this way, our plans at least. We all know how far that goes. But we’ve got to have babies pretty close together.

So this article really struck a chord with me. And what it reminds me; it’s not that I’m digesting this information, because it’s so easy. Like your mom was saying; if it doesn’t serve, then don’t read it. {laughs} What a wise, wise mama.

I encourage everybody listening; if you don’t think this will serve you, then don’t read it. If you can read something with a grain of salt and take away maybe something that could benefit you. The thing that benefits me and my positive takeaway from this article is it reaffirms that I need to really be diligent about topping off the levels, in a layman speak, of my nutritional reserves. And keeping my body as healthy as possible in this year-plus, year and a half after the birth of our first child. Because those stores will replenish naturally over time with a healthy lifestyle. But I think it’s going to require more diligence if we want to have kids together. I don’t know. What do you think?

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Erin: Absolutely. I think the thing that I felt hesitant to put this information out; or share it with other people. The old adage in psychology is correlation is not causation. So it’s not saying; I don’t want any mama or hopeful mama or to-be mama or pregnant or whatever to be like; “Oh no! My kid is going to be on the autism spectrum because I had kids only 5 months apart.” However long the cap in pregnancies is.

Because we know that there’s so much else that goes into it. And we can control some things in terms of our toxic load, and the toxins that we let into our environment. But we can’t control all of those. This isn’t the garden of Eden. So there are toxins. And we’re going to be exposed to them. We can control some of that, and we can’t control other things.

And one of the things that I’ve just been thinking a lot about recently is that idea of; what is the toxic load of stress? Because we know that stress is felt in our bodies, but also physically held in our muscles, and our posture. And I’m doing Brianna Battles pregnancy and postpartum athleticism training right now.

Cassy Joy: Good for you!

Erin: Yeah, I’m really excited. It’s such good information. Every time I go to sit down and work through the course; I’m like, oh my gosh. I feel like 18,000 knowledge bombs are going off right now. It’s such good information.

But all that to say is that if having babies closer together is going to reduce the amount of life stress. Because of whatever reason. Then maybe that’s more beneficial. And as long as you're replenishing those nutrient stores as you can, great! Go for it. If there are other mom’s; I have heard of friends of friends. Their kids are 5 years apart, because they really could only afford daycare for one kid at a time. So once one kid went to kindergarten, they could have another.

And I think we’re learning as people more about families look very different for everyone. And just because I grew up with one sibling who was 3.5 years age difference from me, and I think that’s perfect, that doesn’t mean that that’s perfect for everyone.

Cassy Joy: Absolutely. It’s so funny how those things are different. My sisters and I are all 2.5 years apart, and there’s three of us. And my husband, Austin, is; gosh, what is he? 15 months apart from his younger brother. They’re very, very close in age. And he’s, I think, 4 years apart from his older brother. Austin is in the middle. And growing up, the three boys. He’s close and of course adores both of his brothers. But he and Carson, his younger brother, were so close because they were so close in age.

And it’s funny because it’s true. My bias coming in was, 2.5 years is the perfect number! {laughs} and he’s like, “What if they’re just kind of,” What are they, Irish twins? He loved that. And I am easily talked into just about anything. {laughs} So I’m like, yeah!

Erin: It’s funny. I was in a dance company at the college that I went to. One of the girls in the dance company, she is one of three girls, and they’re all 2 years apart. And her father, I believe, was a professor of psychology; developmental psychology, I think. So when they were young, he would literally have stories. This child is in this stage. Two years later it’s this. So it was this perfect at home psychology experiment.

Cassy Joy: That is so fascinating. It’s kind of like the wonder weeks. If you track that.

Erin: Yeah.

Cassy Joy: Oh gosh, it’s so fascinating the things that we can know now. That’s interesting. And you're right, it’s such a personal decision. And I had never thought about that as well, that you just brought up. The added component of stress, and what that does physiologically to the body. Of course, I understood it. But when you think about it in the context of pregnancy. And does that make you in a healthy state, to possibly conceive and carry and build another baby. It’s really interesting. It’s a really interesting topic.

Austin and I going into having babies, we knew that. Because we both are business owners. We knew that we wanted flexible careers, but we do still want to work in our careers. So we have childcare. For a good chunk of the week. And she’s here right now, and she’s lovely! But that reduces stress significantly. Because I’m not having to work while also holding a baby, and juggle that, and stress about that every single day. I’m able to segment my time.

So it’s interesting that you bring that up. Because I never really thought about that as a portion of it. But I can see that if I were feeling more stressed. And not everybody is tuned into knowing when they feel stressed. But I think if I felt like I was feeling more stressed, then I think I would probably want to wait a little bit longer.

Oh, this is so interesting! I’m not going to arrive at any nugget. There’s like the yellow brick road here, it doesn’t go anywhere. {laughing}

Erin: Right. Well I feel like that’s the same thing with so many wellness factors, if you want to think about it that way. Everything from nutrition, to how you move your body, to if you have a spirituality component. Everything is so different, and works together differently for each person.

I follow Balanced Bites and Diane on Instagram. And I feel like she’s been putting so much content out right now. That’s just like; this is what works for me. And we say this in the safer skincare world, too. This is what works for me. It may not work like that in your body. But this is the information I have, and this is what I know about this recipe, or this skincare product, or this way of moving. And this is how it affects me. And then it’s up to each person to get to know their body in a way that they can begin to understand how those different factors affect their body. Which is such an ominous task.

At the gym, we really coach people to listen to their body. And we’ve realized recently; how do we model what listening to your body is? What does that actually mean?

Cassy Joy: Mm-hmm. It’s almost like seeing a color you hadn’t seen before. Or someone turns on a light in a room, and you realize; oh, there was an elephant in that corner.

It is. You're right. Learning to listen to our bodies. And you know, as a nutrition coach, the thing that comes to mind in that conversation is; that’s why I’m such a big believer and advocate for not a diet. I like to call them a feel-good reset. Because I think; I can relate to it right now. Right now in this moment.

I just took a food intolerance test. And I got my results back. And it turns out I’m currently; because these things are a snapshot in time. I’m currently highly reactive to eggs; whites and yolks. Cheeses, so different types of dairy. What else showed up on there? Those are two of the big ones. And I’ve been eating a lot of eggs, and a lot of dairy. And a lot of cheese. Because it’s such a good; nutritionally I’m thinking, if I’m going to snack and indulge in something, might as well make it really high quality, high fat, good dairy. Good dairy makes good dairy. {laughing}

Erin: {laughs} Yes.

Cassy Joy: For breastfeeding. And man, I hoped on that train. I was strapped in. But, now I have these tolerances come back. And it just reminds me; gosh, do I remember what feeling good feels like right now? Because if I have these major intolerances currently to these foods. Which could be for a number of reasons. But if I go ahead and go without them for a little while, am I going to feel good, and I’m not going to realize that I didn’t feel well.

In those contexts; what does listening to your body look like or sound like? I think it has to involve some sort of a feel-good reset. And I’m not saying everybody needs to go out and take a food intolerance test. But the foods that you know aggravate you.

For example; I know that wheat aggravates me. It gives me headaches. It makes me feel really puffy and bloated, and I just don’t feel well. So I don’t eat it. But if I were eating a lot of it right now, and that had become my new normal. The chronic headaches, and the puffiness; that would just be, this is how I feel. And I would have a hard time really listening to my body. Was I feeling really bad today, or just kind of bad today? So going without it would be my feel-good reset. And then from there, I could make informed decisions of listening to my body going forward. That’s just what came to mind there.

I feel like it’s similar when we think about preparing our bodies for baby making, in a lot of ways. Figure out what our baseline feel-good is. That includes stress, and hydration, and sleep. How rested we are. And then go on from there.

It’s also interesting; Erin I don’t know if you’ve encountered this much at all. But ladies, after we have babies, and we’re thinking about more. Whether it’s one years, two years, or five years down the road. For whatever reason, every single one of my personal baby acquaintances. {laughs} Moms with baby acquaintances. {laughs} It sounds like I have 12 friends that are all infants.

These women who have had children; I have not talked to a single one who didn’t have a goal of getting back into shape before the next baby. You know? And that’s something else to consider. Even though this conversation of today’s yellow brick road doesn’t necessarily lead anywhere solid. I think it’s worth throwing into this conversation about preparing for the next baby is; really restricting ourselves, and forcing these brand new bodies into an old body mindset. The way we used to look at our bodies. Forcing it in there.

We can get there, but at what cost? And having suffered from body dysmorphia, and eating disorders in the past. Granted, it was 10 years ago, but that doesn’t make it any less real. I can see that temptation. It’s hanging like a carrot on the end of the stick. I know how to get my body to change. But at what cost? Right? Because I know it’s not going to be ultimately promote wellness for me in the long run. I know that it could potentially impact breastmilk supply for my daughter. Which is a priority. Because we’re able to do it, I’m going to keep doing it as I can. And I know what could also be the cost is depleting nutrient reserves. Nutrient stores for potential more babies to make use of.

And so I think it’s just an interesting thing. If anybody out there is listening, and also thinking about when maybe to plan for the next baby. I just want to throw that out there, because I don’t want it to be an unseen or unspoken of issue. We have this temptation to go crush it in the gym, and to diet, and to see if we can get our bodies back ASAP. Whatever back means. And I don’t know that we always consider what the cost is.

Erin: Totally. I heard a talk once. I can’t remember if it was a sermon or a business talk, or what kind of presentation it was. They presented this idea of seasons. And that if you're in a season of just having delivered a baby. Then your body is just in a different season than it was when you were preparing to look awesome in your wedding photos. Or whatever it may be. And there’s joys and then there’s grief in every season that we’re in. Whether that be; I know for me personally the joy is that my body did create this baby. And that was something we really wanted for a long time. And that’s really joyful.

I honestly remember looking in the mirror after she was born. Very soon after she was born just being like; that body that I see looking back at me, created and delivered; birthed a baby.

Cassy Joy: I’m going to cry. That’s so beautiful.

Erin: And the grief is that I can’t go into the gym and do my five-minute kettlebell test and get over 100 reps like I used to. In this season, I don’t need my body to do that right now. There will be a time where if I choose to have that as a goal again, that’s awesome. But right now, it’s all about how we choose to treat our bodies in this season. And knowing that how we choose to treat our bodies in this season will impact what our bodies are able to do in the next season.

Cassy Joy: Absolutely. Amen sister! I love it. So beautifully said. I love it so much. It’s exactly what it is. I told Austin the other day; and I posted about this on social media. Maybe Graysen was two months old. About buying clothes for this season of my body. Because I didn’t know what to expect. It’s not that I had unrealistic expectations. I didn’t have expectations, I just didn’t know what to expect what my body would do after having a baby. And because I didn’t know, I thought; maybe it will go back.

Because you hear these women who say; breastfeeding, I just shrunk right up. {laughs} That’s not the case over here. Five months in. My body is definitely not a fan of doing that. And I’m so glad that at two months, I went and bought clothes that fit me. Because now I still have a wardrobe. I think I’ll look at these clothes and be like; those were the clothes for that season of my life. And maybe this season, if we are able to have more babies, will last a good decade! You know? That would be incredible.

But you're right. This is just the season we’re in. This is the season of not restricting. Of ultimate wellness. Of really nurturing mind, body, and soul. And creating the foundation for really healthy family. That’s the season I’m in. It’s not the season to go into the gym and to crush it and to see if I can get my body fat down, and to see if I can peek at some abs, and to get a good tan. It’s just not. That feels like a million miles away right now.

And that used to be something I really loved doing. I really loved eating well and kind of seeing how to manipulate body composition in the past. And like I said; part of that was a disordered eating component. Another part of it was I was just darn curious. And I don’t have that in me right now. What’s in me is to just be well. And to embrace and enjoy where we’re at for this season.

Erin: Totally.

Cassy Joy: This has just been the best!

Erin: It’s so true. And I think especially having a daughter. I just think about; I was reading, I don’t remember where I was reading it. But that idea that daughter’s watch their moms. And I don’t want my daughter to be like, “Mom looks at herself in the mirror and looks sad.” Or, “Mom gets on the scale and looks sad.”

What I’m doing now, when she’s 5 months old, is setting up a pattern. Just trying to have all those behaviors in the house be positive. From vegetables being exciting to, I don’t even know what else. Trying to eliminate some of those things that a young girl could look and see; mom has a negative reaction to this thing that has to do with her body, or her health, or her eating. And tried to make eating, and nourishment, and full body wellness a positive thing for her life.

Cassy Joy: I love it. Oh my goodness! She is just the luckiest girl to have you as a mom.

Erin: Aww.

Cassy Joy: That is so sweet. I cannot thank you enough for coming on today’s show. I really enjoyed today’s conversation.

Erin: Yeah. Thanks so much. It was fun to chat with someone in the exact same season right now.

Cassy Joy: We are. We are in the same season. And as such, I highly recommend the blue jeans from Athleta. I don’t know if they still make them, but I’m wearing some right now. And they are so stretchy, but they’re still skinny jeans. It’s kind of like; they’re not quite jeggings. But they’re close.

Erin: It’s interesting; literally 20 minutes before we talked, I was listening to the most recent episode of Girls Gone WOD. And Claire was talking about these jeans from Athleta that they say, “We’re not saying that you should do yoga in these, but you could.” I wonder if those are the same jeans you're wearing.

Cassy Joy: They’re the same jeans! Because on the board, it said, “Jeans so great, you could do yoga in them.”

Erin: {laughing}

Cassy Joy: That’s so funny. I’m wearing them right now. These are the perfect seasonal jeans.

Erin: Good to know!

Cassy Joy: Oh my goodness. Well, thank you so much for joining me. And everybody else, thank you for joining in and listening. As always, you can head over to the blog to read the full transcript from today’s show. We’ll also link to that journal we chatted about. As always, we’ll be back again next week. You guys have a great week.


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  1. Erin says:

    I absolutely loved the last 8 minutes of this episode when you talked about seasons of life and that its ok for life and our bodies post partum to look different from prepregnancy. I really struggled with that after my first pregnancy and being newly pregnant with my second child I really plan to keep your words in mind. Thank you for being such a positive voice for all the mommas out there!

  2. Kate says:

    Great podcast, thanks. Optimizing health before getting pregnant was something I put a lot of work into prior to both my pregnancies. It was much easier during my first pregnancy and I was happy with my hormone levels as shown by blood tests prior to conception. The second time around it was more difficult. Despite excellent nutrition, supplements, plenty of rest, exercise, etc, etc I still wasn’t getting the blood test results I was after. For me it came down to managing stress and regaining a sense of purpose. I took a career break after having my first baby to be a full time mom and work for my husband’s business because that was the best option for us as a family and meant I could spend more time with the baby and be there for every moment. I would work while he slept. However, it took a toll on my sense of purpose and caused stress, which showed up in my blood tests. I’m now enjoying a healthy second pregnancy and in the process of building my own business again. I will have a nanny to help out with the next baby and not try to do everything myself. Much happier to have this balance.