These last 9 months or so have developed a new pattern in our household: I'm usually awoken in the morning by my 4 1/2 year old climbing into bed with me at 7:15, when he rearranges my pillows and blankets so he can lay down and pretend to sleep for 10 minutes; then he gets really close to my face and whispers "I'm ready for my breakfast now."
He's a natural snooze button: the initial wake up, then 10 minutes until his announcement, then he gets up to get his bowl and fill it with cereal giving me about 10 more minutes before I waddle over to pour the milk.
The other morning, I woke up long before anyone else and enjoyed the stillness and solitude of dawn, like I used to on my early morning runs...only minus the run. My boy kept up his ritual, but whispering to his dad instead when he realized I was missing. Soon enough, he stumbled upon me in the living room, saying sweetly "When I saw you weren't in bed, I thought you were out running."
It was such a lovely reminder that my old routine wouldn't be traumatic to reinstate once the baby is born. I'll adapt to our changing family yet be able to keep the frame of who I am. And it gave me hope that, no, the strains of pregnancy aren't forever - I will become strong and invigorated soon enough. And my family will help me.