Friday, November 20, 2009

Fashionably Late

Like most first babies, our little guy has decided to wait a bit longer than his due date to make his grand entrance into our lives. Since I am now 40 weeks and 1 day pregnant, we have officially started the waiting game. But, even as I say "officially," I know it's not actually official. Over the course of the first half of my pregnancy, I was given three different due dates, ranging from November 13th to November 26th, so I could be only 39 weeks pregnant at this point.

My midwives are going by the 19th due date, but have told me that if the 26th comes and goes, and the baby and I both look healthy, they won't be in any big hurry to induce. Which I am very thankful for. I'm of the opinion that the baby will arrive when he knows it's time, and who am I to rush him along just because I'm ready to meet him? Of course, if it looks like the baby is running out of amniotic fluid, my placenta is breaking down, he's not getting the nutrients he needs, or any other issues are going on that are threatening either of our health, then of course, an induction would be necessary and favorable.

I found out at my last appointment that the chemicals that start the labor process are released from my babies brain; not the female parts of my body, but from my baby. He's the one we're waiting on to tell us when the time is right. I think that's a pretty cool process that was designed by our Creator. Doctors and scientists have attempted to duplicate these chemicals but, thankfully, have been unsuccessful. Babies and the birth process are mysterious miracles and we as humans have messed up many aspects of it, hopefully this is one aspect we won't be able to duplicate.

Until we meet our little guy, I'll be attempting to enjoy every second of freedom that comes with not caring for every need another human. While I am so excited to meet him, I realize that our lives are going to be turned upside down, in lots of great ways, but they will never be the same. So I'm going to take long showers, spend too much time on the internet, take a nap when I feel like it, get an almost full night of sleep (minus all the obligatory trips to the bathroom), and lots of other things that won't be as easy with a newborn.

Another thing I'll be doing is trying not to let sarcastic responses slip out when I'm faced with all the, "You're still pregnant?!" and, "You haven't had that baby yet?!" comments that come from people I'm speaking with face-to-face. One of the things I've realized over the last 10 months is, if you're not sure what to say to a pregnant lady, know that, even if you don't mean it this way, many things could come across as hurtful and frustrating. A sincere, "How are you feeling?" or "You look great," are always a safe bet. Even if the latter isn't completely true, she enjoys hearing it because she most likely doesn't actually believe it herself. Coming down off my soap box now.

Stay tuned, we'll keep you posted as things progress!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Déjà Vu

These last few days of rain, wind, and gray skies have transported me back to Scotland.

Typically, this long of a stretch of weather like we've had this week would have quite the depressing effect on my demeanor, but this time it has a slightly comforting appeal to it. Don't get me wrong, I'm not wishing for weather like this to continue and I definitely am not preferring it over blue sunny skies, but now that we've had the chance to step away from constant dreary weather of Scotland, and have been exposed to a (somewhat) hot Virginia summer and a beautiful fall, I can appreciate it a bit more and not get so annoyed with it.

I think behind my contentment is the knowledge of a stretch of sunny skies and warmer weather that is right around the corner, a luxury we didn't have in Scotland.

I could get deeper about how this is a reflection of my attitude toward life and how if I could learn to appreciate the gray skies as much as the blue skies, and keep the perspective that there are always blue skies around the corner, I might just learn more from the rainy days and see the joy in all the seasons of my life, no matter how gray the sky is or how long the rain sticks around.

But instead, I'll soak in this gray, rainy day and reminisce about the great times we had in Scotland, and more importantly about all the incredible people we met who love us like their own family and who we miss terribly.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

38 Weeks, and a Realization

About a week ago, a funny thing happened. I saw my profile in a mirror and realized that for the first time, my big belly seemed normal to me. Up until then, I would see my reflection and be surprised or just shake my head in disbelief that this ever expanding belly is actually a part of my body.

It only took 9 months to get to that point, but I'm finally here. Having a child grow inside my body is such a bizarre, and incredible, experience, I can't even begin to explain it; and I never would've been able to understand what it's like without experiencing it.

So here we are, 38 weeks pregnant and two weeks to go until D-day. But of course, a due date, as everyone knows, is merely a suggestion, especially for first babies. Our little guy could decide to arrive any day, or it could be another four weeks from now. My hope is he'll arrive on the day that is best for him, he can take as long as he needs to grow and long as it happens during the month of November.

In the last week, I've been dealing with some pain in the hip/pelvic area. From what I've been told, ligaments are loosening up down there to prepare for this little man's arrival, which is one of the reasons for pain. Another issue I've been having is sciatica; apparently he's camped out on a nerve which is causing random shooting pains through my hip and leg and pain whenever I take a step. But I've talked to ladies who've had this kind of pain for 2/3rds of their pregnancy, so if it's only the last 3-4 weeks that I'm having to deal with this, I'd say that's pretty good and I'm super grateful.

I'm off to pack my hospital bag. I'm a horrible procrastinator when it comes to packing for a trip, I usually do it after midnight the night before a trip. That obviously won't work this time since I imagine the last thing I'll feel like doing in the midst of labor pains is packing a bag with all the necessities.

Here's where I could use your help: any suggestions from you mothers (or fathers) of items I definitely will want or items you took and definitely didn't need?