A year ago I was a totally different person.  I was that person for 33 years in different permutations, phases, hair colors, jobs, and countries, but still pretty much me. Now I am someone completely new. I think it has taken me the entire year to figure out who the hell that is, but I'm getting there.

In any case I can tell you that the end of my previous life was really uncomfortable and I spent the remaining few weeks lying like a beached whale on the sofa staring at my feet, which looked like two blowfish. I wasn't necessarily ready to be a mom, but I was really ready to not be pregnant any more.

I keep trying to remember what I was thinking, who I was in those last few days a year ago and what I would go back and say to the old me now.  Maybe something like " This will be the hardest year of your life and mostly not fun, pretty overwhelming, exhausting, and frightening, but you will survive it and things will get better, more joyous and less terrifying.  You have the most amazing husband and family ever. Your kids are going to be incredible people, but not who you ever expected. Oh, and your feet will go back to normal."
Close to the end
Yes, that's my belly, with our little mascot reaching the summit
Oh my God, for real I look like I'm going to give birth to a full grown Sumo wrestler
Our last meal on the way to the hospital was at IHOP (International House of Pancakes for you non- Americans).  Sam's totally giving me the side eye!