Trading Board for Baby

Winter Wonderland in Whistler, BC

Racing down the alpine corridor shifting my weight toe-side to heel-side and back again, I effortlessly weave past crowds of skiers.  Powder sprays behind my snowboard as I shout, “Wahoooooo!”.   I navigate the impressive Blackcomb Mountain as heaps of snow blanket the already white trees and fresh tracks.  My board slices through bumps as a knife through warm butter and I whiz by blue and black trail markers without a second glance.

My mind grapples with these fantasies.  Today is the perfect powder day.  A day I should be shouting out in exuberation at the speed and ease and fun of snowboarding in a white out.  I’ve boarded on days like this before and it is AWESOME.  I want so bad for today to be the same.   Yet, I’m apprehensive.  I’m aching.  I’m tired.  And it’s only the first run.  Correct that, it’s only half-way down the first run.

Ski School at Blackcomb Mountain, Whistler, BC

Resting on the snow, I give myself credit for trying.  It’s not even three months since my c-section and only a few weeks since my doctor permitted me to do anything more than walk, even climb stairs.  I’m not sure what I expected my body to do today with so little postpartum therapy.  But, my husband had handed me his lift ticket, saying, “It’s your ski vacation too, honey”, and I couldn’t let another powder day pass without gearing up.

I agreed to a winter excursion to get our older kids in ski school.  I knew I wouldn’t be spending a lot of time on the slopes, but I thought maybe I could manage a day or two.  I was especially anxious to get back on the mountain since I was denied any downhill adventures last year after learning of my pregnancy only days prior to our big ski trip.

Afraid to push my body too hard, I call my husband to admit defeat.  He persuades me to give it another try, “The first run’s always the hardest,” he reassures me.  I pick myself up and timidly finish the run, worried my knees, back, abs or something else will give out along the way.  I gather the courage to take chair lift again and try to convince my lift companion, and myself, that it’s good to be back.

Mom and Baby in Whistler, BC

The second run of the day surprises me. I make it down with far fewer stops, no major falls and I actually get a tinge of excitement for the next run.  By the end of the third run, however, my legs are so tired and my mind so doubtful of my body’s endurance, I decide there is nothing more that I want to do than get off this mountain and cuddle up in front of a fire with my newborn baby.

My husband and I swap lift ticket and baby at the hotel.  As I peer into the bright blue eyes before me, the mountain out the window at my back, I snuggle up right where I belong.  There’s always next season.