Saturday, March 15, 2014

Fresh :)

Here's our newest, over the first few days. Born March 13 2014 at 2:38 AM. Birth story to follow.

Note the intense pride in The Caterpillar. (Here's pictures of The Caterpillar when she was first born, for a fun comparison! Definitely sisters.)

Monday, March 10, 2014

Almost Not Pregnant: A 9 Month Recap

I'm 41 weeks and 2 days pregnant - or as I'm now calling it, "almost not pregnant". After a welcomingly busy - albeit way-too-cold - winter, sprinkled with a few weddings, a big bridal show, a small bridal show, new work & the dreaded trudge of taxes, the second half of this pregnancy really flew by quickly and left me with blogging at the bottom of my priority list. As you know, baking bread has been my creative outlet aside, and that's been good enough for me.

But I thought that I should probably pay some homage to this pregnancy on my faith & family blog before it's over. Because, in 4 days, it's going to be over. That's when the calendar says I'm going to be induced. Either that, or some miracle of miracles is going to move things along so I can get this job done naturally. I welcome either option with open arms and the grace God gives at the time He gives it.

So this pregnancy: here's a recap.

Either people were nicer, or I got better at ignoring them.
Probably the second one. When I was pregnant with The Caterpillar, I felt like everyone had some kind of comment relating to my weight gain / having-kids-young life choice / child's gender / name decisions / how I should proceed with my life. It really weighed me down and quite frankly got exhausting - especially considering I was planning a home birth, and apparently everyone and their uncle has an opinion about home birth.

Now that I sit to recap the last 9 months, I can definitely argue that this time around, I cared far less what people had to say about what: home birth, hospital birth, natural, induction... if you don't have anything nice to say, it goes in one ear and out the other quicker than I had thought possible. Chances are, if you sent me an article about childbirth or parenting, I didn't read it unless I asked to see it first. Sorry. I generally smile/nod to name submissions; thanks random stranger, maybe I will name my child after you. And I am owning the fact that I gain 50 pounds while I'm pregnant*, and I will have seconds on dessert, TYVM.

I stayed on top of my iron levels.
Last pregnancy featured a lot of lying around in guilt, wondering why on earth I was so gosh-dang lazy. Turns out that I wasn't lazy at all, I was severely anemic - a condition not reserved exclusively for straw-haired teenagers which is what I had always assumed. This time around, not only did I rock the world at finding iron supplements which work for me (Flourodix wasn't absorbing no matter how much Vit-C I consumed, but I found a better & cheaper alternative that required no follow-up dietary work!), I learned a thing or two about grace.

Grace: God has it for you, you should give it to yourself. You're doing great.

[Cue heavenly chorus, make reasonable goals that you can meet, and give yourself a little love.]

Also it helps that sometime in my third month of pregnancy John decided to become un-vegetarian and developed a (possibly unhealthy) obsession with homemade burgers.

I had pelvic pain like a boss.
My birth with The Caterpillar was so fast that I have a lovely wider-than-normal gap in my symphasis pubis, resulting in Symphasis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD), which is a fairly common ailment treatable with physiotherapy or (my choice) chiropractic care. But until you smarten up and get help with it, simple things like walking, getting in / out of cars & bed, and sleeping, are made very painful. It wasn't until I was 8 months along that I thought, "hey, maybe I should get some relief!". Next time I'll know better.

I didn't go into labour at 40 weeks.
So here's a little lesson it looks like I'll be learning for some time: Apparently, my children are not exactly the same as one another. Whaaaaat? Nobody warned me. I have to learn a new person again?

The Caterpillar, already quite clearly a Type A at almost 2 years old, decided she was ready to come on the night of my due date. Like clockwork, she just arrived. She's been pretty routine-oriented since (don't count sleep in that statement) and her birth story makes perfect sense considering the little person she's becoming. She's awesome. Fully awesome. I adore that girl.

And for some reason, that was what John and I were expecting this time around (we know for sure this one's going to be fully awesome, too): a 2 AM water-breaking wake up call resulting in a 10 AM baby, at 40 weeks 1 day. And it was looking that way - or better yet, early!: at 39 weeks on the dot, I went into early labour. But then it stopped. And a few days later, I went into early labour again. And then it stopped. And three times more since then, and here we are at 40 weeks. Twice the midwives have said "Tonight! You'll have a baby by the end of tonight!", and twice I proved them wrong.

As it turns out, I may have had more than a few scars to heal (emotionally I mean) that I hadn't addressed after the whirlwind that was The Caterpillar's birth & recovery: another story for when this all pans out. The good news is that God has done a hard work in me the last few weeks that have healed 2 years of bitterness and anger, yes, but 2 years of fear that I hadn't realized was buried somewhere in my psyche. I fully believe in the connection between my mind and my body, and I think that my mind wasn't in agreement with my body about the next steps to come. I feel confident now that I'm on the same page with myself and will be able to move forward. Thank you Lord, that these two girls are unique already, and that this has brought healing full circle.

I've enjoyed it.
Okay sure. So five weeks ago I proclaimed to my husband in the most Soap-Opera-esque dramatic outcry you could imagine, "I'm done, I'm just done, let me have this BABY". At that moment, I didn't enjoy it. Actually, there were more than a few moments where I didn't enjoy it. But despite that, despite those ugly moments of fed-up-ness, I've enjoyed it. Pregnancy is good. I feel like I'm not done. (Well, maybe I'm done this one.) I feel like I could do this again, that I want to do this again. The fun and joy of watching The Caterpillar grow into a little person, and the pleasure I take in watching Baby 2 roll around my belly as the days go on, are irreplaceable. I want this. I want it again and again. I'm grateful for it and I don't take this pregnancy for granted: it's a gift that I need to thank God for daily - sometimes over and over again as I lumber around my house like Snuffleupagus. And I've enjoyed it.

So 4 days. Let's do this.

*This number is literal.