24 Jan

Last night I had a difficult time sleeping. My spirit didn’t feel at peace and I had many unclear thoughts floating through my sleepy yet uncomfortable mind. I was ruminating on unformed thoughts, like words that balance on the tip of the tongue. I prayed that God would bring clarity to what he wanted me to understand, and he gave me a sliver of a revelation.

As an established adult with three children, I can see both the beginning and the end of life. I remember my childhood so easily, all the while foreseeing my children in adulthood with their own children, and I have come to realize the shortness of life. I spent a large fraction of my given life discontent, although I have been on a road for the past few years understanding the intimacies of a relationship with God and I have felt such fulfillment in basking in who God is and His love for me. Without going in to too many details, I can list things that I have not been content with throughout my life: My figure, my physical features, my expectations, my house, my parenting, my lack of knowledge, wisdom, and understanding, just to name a few extremely broad categories.

As I have conquored different giants within myself, I have encountered people who are  absolutely consumed by their discontentment and I have thought with some surprise, “You haven’t gotten that, yet?” However, I have realized that not everyone has sat in the same class of life as I, and as a result, I have had a clarifying revelation.

Last night among the nebulous thoughts in my spirit, I heard whispers of “destroy” and “destruction” and “be consumed.” They were chants of the darkness that I saw around a weak and frail body of believers. I felt paralyzed and feeble.  But just as soon as I started curling in to a ball, I burst forth like a ball of fire in the darkness and declared the word that Jesus came to give life, and life in abundance.

Upon waking this morning, I felt tired from my restless night. I still, at that moment, didn’t understand the many murmers of my spirit from the evening; all I could say is that I felt weird and uncomfortable and hadn’t slept peacefully, even though I prayed, “en paz me acostaré, así mismo me dormiré.” (Psalm 4:8 In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, Lord, make me dwell in safety.)

Throughout the morning I carried the echos of the night with me, and I felt as if I was in a strange land with a foreign tongue and I hadn’t been able to understand what was being said around me.

At church, my pastor breezed over a verse and paraphrased how Jesus came to give us abundant life. “Abundant life” kept reverberating in my spirit, like a string plucked strongly and left to sound. Thoughts slowly began to come together to coherence.

It is here that I have come to declare that those who call themselves believers have a form of godliness, but deny the power of the Creator of the universe. The devil has set out to destroy anything that he can place his hands on, and his destruction is the obvious and the obscure. He is delighted when those who claim to follow God focus so much on themselves and on their shortcomings that they ignore living an abundant life and are in a constant state of emergency within themselves. Their energy is spent on conquoring their giants that they have nothing left over to give others. I am here to say that Jesus conquored it all! He conquored the grave! You do not have to fight yourself; you have to surrender to Him. How much more effective can we be as Christians if we don’t have to focus our energy on putting out a dozen grassfires every day. God comes like a rushing ocean. Are our battles too much for Him? Stop battling and start surrendering.

A few weeks ago, someone was discouraged because “the church people” weren’t getting it. I said, “don’t waste your time ministering to church people. Jesus came to seek and save the lost.” While I agree with myself, this is the word to you today to live abundantly.

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

John 10.10















Baby’s Birth Day!

2 May

It’s a girl!  Baby girl arrived a few hours after my last log update!  I really was in labor, so I will continue on describing my day.

I posted the first half of labor day at about 2:15pm here (Part 1 of labor day).  After I did that, Fernando came upstairs and took a nap. I decided around 3:30ish that I wanted to take another nap.  I was debating between napping and doing some sort of activity to speed up my labor, but the nap won, and I am glad of my choice.

I don’t think I slept very long; it was probably about a half an hour. I don’t remember what I did right after nap, but I had a few contractions during my nap and they were quite strong.

At around 4:30pm we were all talking about what our plans for the evening should be. I decided that it would be nice to just go to the hospital and see what the status of my cervix was. I wanted to know if I was still just 3cm, or if I was 4cm and could stay home until things got more intense, or if I was on the way to having a baby soon. At 5:00pm we started getting the kids ready to leave. We determined that a good plan of action would be to get everyone dinner close to the hospital, and then evaluate after dinner how I felt. We collected our last minute hospital bag items, and headed out the door around 5:30pm. During the drive, I had about 2 strong contractions. We got to Chick-Fil-A a bit before 6pm. I had another contraction right as we got out of the car, and I hugged Fernando. When we got inside Chick Fil A, I realized I could not eat. I saved tables while everyone ordered. During dinner I had a few contractions, and with one of them I said, “Ok, I need to go to the hospital. I don’t think I can stay here any longer.” Even though contractions were getting more intense and a bit more frequent, I remained until everyone was finished with dinner. I joked with Rebecca as we were leaving that if I’d had the baby at Chick-Fil-A, maybe she would get free food for life.

Fernando and I left the restaurant and Mom and Rebecca took the kids to our friends’ house, which was only a few blocks away. We arrived at the hospital and got buzzed in to the birth center. I said, “I’m in labor and I just wanted to see if I needed to be admitted to the hospital yet.” I felt a little silly because I waltzed in to the birth center and I know I looked like I was not in labor. However, right when I was on my way to a triage room I did have a contraction and had to stop walking two feet from the door. 

We got settled in triage and the nurse determined I was 5.5/6cm. I wasn’t surprised or sad at the news, but I did have to ask to clarify if I needed to stay. The nurse laughed and said, “Oh yes, you are staying!  I’m sorry if I didn’t explicitly mention that!” I wasn’t sure how I felt about being admitted. In my mind, I was thinking  about the fact that I had progressed about 3cm since my last appointment. With as slow as labor had been during the day, I was expecting to give birth the following day, Sunday, or even on Monday. The nurse also said that my midwife was on her way over. I felt kind of bad because I thought, “oh! She doesn’t have to come quite yet! I don’t want her to have to sit around waiting for me and my turtle-slow labor!”

We moved over to the birth room around 7:30pm. I was surprised that Mom and Rebecca hadn’t made it to the hospital yet, but I found out they stopped at the store on their way over(!). I remember thinking how big the birth room felt with just me and Fernando. We still hadn’t grabbed our suitcase and the lights were really dim. Mom and Rebecca arrived around 7:45pm, and our birth photographer arrived right after we got in to the birth room at about 7:35pm. It took me awhile to get the birth room to feel homey and comfortable. I determined that I liked having the lights pretty bright. Aunt Lori arrived a bit after 8pm with a coffee in hand for Fernando, and I was getting monitored from 8pm-8:20pm. Right when Aunt Lori arrrived, we started talking about some family things that were happening, and in the middle of her narrative, I got a very intense contraction, and I think I cried – tears of joy from being overwhelmed from the story, not from the pain – but either way it was very hormonal. After that specific contraction, nothing was a game to me anymore. I officially entered intense labor mode, and my contractions picked up to very frequent

I remember during this time that I went to the bathroom a lot. For some reason, the bathroom is a strange place for me during labor. With Emmanuel, I had painful contractions every time I squatted to go to the bathroom. With this baby, I immediately had a contraction right when I entered the bathroom… it wasn’t even when I was going to the bathroom. All of my contractions by this time were felt in my pelvis and cervix. Every contraction by this time during this labor felt like those painful contractions I had with Emmanuel only during the time that I would go to the bathroom and squat. I tried to lay down on my sides and my back during this time, and I discovered that contractions were worse in those positions. My last laying down position that I tried was with a peanut between my knee around 8:40pm and as I laid down during that contraction and began putting the peanut between my knee, I said, “Oh heck no!” and jumped up in agony.

I was very desperate to find something to relieve the pain from the pubic/pelvis/cervical pain during contractions.  I decided that standing up and leaning on something allowed me to survive the contractions, but I was very upset that nothing had improved how I felt during contractions. I didn’t want to just survive a contraction, I wanted to thrive during contractions! I had never had such difficulty getting through contractions before. With Hadassah, my contractions were textbook typical, and I felt them in my stomach. With Emmanuel, they were a bit more difficult, as I felt them in my stomach, plus I had back pain, and I had severe pain when I squatted, so to avoid the severe pain, I avoided squatting! With this baby, I didn’t even notice any discomfort in my stomach or back, I was just experiencing pure pain down below.

I was thinking about the differences in my contractions a bit before 9pm when I remembered that I felt relief with Emmanuel once Fernando started doing counterpressure on my back. Some birthing knowledge came to me from the corner of my brain about other places to do counterpressure. I told Fernando to squeeze my hips…When he did that during a contraction, I felt my first bit of relief. I went from having quite unbarable contractions to being able to get through them. The counterpressure did not fully relieve my pain, but I was able to manage. 

At 9pm, the nurse came in to monitor the baby again. All I could think of was how I was not going to lay down.  I did not care what they said! Luckily, the nurse just asked me if I preferred to be monitored on a wireless device, and I said yes! I labored standing up while being monitored, and contractions were coming very frequently. After I was done being monitored, I told the nurse I needed to get in the tub asap. Since contractions were difficult, the only thing left to do in my repertoire for dealing with contractions was a soak in the tub. The nurse went to prepare the tub while I labored. 

My midwife came to check me at 9:30pm, and I couldn’t believe I was only 8cm and she said the baby was at 0 station. I told her I wanted to go in the tub. The good news about being only 8cm was that I knew I could go in the tub, because if I had been 10cm I knew they wouldn’t let me in the tub.  I looked at the nurse and midwife standing side by side as they told me how dilated I was, and they had a weird look on their face and told me I couldn’t get in the tub. They said that if I got in the tub I would have the baby in the tub (which is against their liability rules). I looked at them, uncomprehendingly. I still had 2cm to dilate. How could I have the baby any time soon? I was going to die if I had to keep laboring how I was laboring!

A little after 9:40pm, I got in the bed and started laboring on my hands and knees. I remember some time around this time, my midwife asked me if I thought I would birth on my hands in knees. I told her I probably was, but I didn’t really understand why she was making me decide so soon. At 9:45pm, my mom and sister started rubbing my back. I didn’t realize it at the time that Fernando wasn’t around – he had gone to the bathroom. They were actually doing a really good job, but at some moment I needed Fernando specifically during a contraction and I yelled out, “WHERE’S FERNANDO?!?!!!!!!” I was really annoyed to find out that he was in the bathroom! 

At 9:55pm I felt like I wanted to start pushing. My midwife let me get through my contraction and she checked me and I was only 9cm dilated. I couldn’t believe I wasn’t 10cm, and I felt like there was no way I was going to make it through to the birth. 

From 10:00pm until about 10:15pm I was doing anything and everything I could to get through the contractions. I was counting, humming, and writhing. I was feeling a little tired being on my knees, and I realized that I had no choice since part of the bed had been removed. Rebecca came by my head and asked if I wanted my bag of waters broken. I said I wasn’t sure and I was so scared to get it done since my labor had been slow and I still wasn’t 10cm. I asked Jana in between contractions at about 10:15pm  what breaking my waters would mean. She said it usually shortens labor by about 30 minutes. I wanted to die when I heard that I might have to endure more than 30 more minutes of labor, so I decided to have her do it after my following contraction.

At 10:18pm Jana broke my water. I started really flipping out and the nurse firmly said to me, “Rachel, you are in control.” and I got myself under control. I immediately felt some slight relief, but I also immediately felt like pushing. After that contraction that happened when my midwife broke my water, I got a few minute break. With my next contraction, Jana told me not to push since I still wasn’t 10cm and had the cervical lip. She told me just push enough to take the edge off. I said, “baby is coming!” I felt like baby was still far up but that I was having the productive pushing feelings. She checked me after that contraction and said, “Oh, yep! You are ready to have the baby!”

I still wasn’t sure how long it would take to bring baby down, but after a contraction I could feel baby’s head start to come out. However, everyone said they couldn’t see anything, so I felt really far away from my goal. In another contraction I really needed to know specifically how my progress was going and I felt like no one was communicating clearly with me. I said, “WHAT IS GOING ON?!” and baby’s head was halfway out, but I didn’t realize it at the time. With the next push, I did realize that baby’s head was finally out. I felt relief in knowing that all I had to do was get the rest of the baby out. I had finished the most difficult part.

On my next push, I expected it to be easier, but baby was not coming out! I pushed with all my might and needed all the coaching from the nurse to push the rest of the baby out. She finally came out at 10:24pm, just minutes after I got my water broken. I discovered the reason pushing her body out was so difficult was because her fist was right next to her head.

I just stood on my knees for a minute and I kept telling everyone I didn’t want to know if it was a boy or girl yet. I wanted to turn around and see my baby first and get comfortable. As I was looking at the wall, my chest felt really weird, like I had gotten the wind knocked out of me. I had to calm my body down before I could finally turn around.

When I turned around and saw my baby, she was so dark! I just thought, “Who are you?! How did you get in my womb?” I couldn’t believe how dark she was! I later realized that she looked black because of her lack of oxygen! Now she is pretty pink looking! They handed her to me and the blanket was around her bottom, and I opened it up and saw she was a girl!

After giving birth, it seems like a major thought that I always have is, “Oh! That was so hard!” It’s something that I kept repeating, and her birth was definitely the hardest of the three. I also remember thinking immediately that I would never be able to go through labor and delivery again, although a week later, I think I can do it! Each little bundle of joy is worth any discomfort!

1 day till due date

18 Apr

Well, today MIGHT just be baby’s birthday!  If not, I am pretty sure baby will at least be here on his/her due date.

I woke up this morning around 5am. I don’t remember if I went pee or if I had a contraction that woke me. All I know is that I had three pretty intense contractions in a row and decided that maybe I should start timing my contractions and that maybe labor was starting. I looked at my phone and saw it was 5:33am. I waited for my next contraction. And waited. I gave up on waiting for a contraction and just relaxed in bed like I normally do. Finally at 6am I had another contraction. I didn’t grab my phone to time them, but I had 3 contractions in 15 minutes. I decided to get up to go pee again and tell mom that I was maybe in labor. As I was peeing, mom was carrying a crying Emmanuel up the stairs. I quickly wiped and noticed that I didn’t have a chunk of mucus plug, but I did have lots of mucus when I wiped, if that makes sense. It wasn’t a chunk, it was just like a lot of cervical fluid. A lot.

I went to attend to my crying baby. Usually if he is crying in the morning, he says that he is so sad and it is because he wants mommy. But this morning he said he had an owie. Oh great. I latched him on and when I asked him where his owie was, he pointed to his ear. Oh brother. Not an ear infection!

I didn’t feed him for a super long time, and I don’t remember if I had any contractions while nursing him or not. I just remember he popped off suddenly (I think he had overheard something enticing), and he said, “Mommy! I’m HAPPY!” Sweet baby…

I grabbed some coffee, the kiddos were running around, mom was chatting with dad on the phone, and at 6:45am I was just thinking about how funny it was that I might be in labor, but I hadn’t gotten to tell anyone the story.

I went to the bathroom at 7:15am, and I think at this point I still hadn’t explained to anyone that I thought I might be in labor. I saw that I was having a bloody show, and yelled out excitedly, “There’s blood!!!!! I’m in LABOR!” Right as I was screaming, Rebecca came out of her room totally asleep, and I repeated my exciting news. The next few hours were quite humorous. I only had about 3-4 contractions an hour. I sat down after my excitement to drink another cup of coffee, and I was chided by mom and Beck for not rushing in to the shower first. I drudgingly abandoned my cup of coffee and showered first, since I was the priority person of the day. I spent a lot of time wandering around the house aimlessly while I was trying to get ready. I was trying to text my VIPs that I was in labor while getting ready and packing some of my last minute items in my suitcase. I knew I wasn’t ready to go to the hospital, but I knew I just needed to get ready and then spend the rest of the morning laboring. Rebecca and I had made appointments to get manicures and pedicures at 9:30am. I was planning on canceling the appointment, but then realized that with only a few contractions an hour, I had plenty of time to get my nails done. 

After we determined that we were going to keep our appointments, we rushed around looking for mom’s car keys… since we were unable to find them we took our van. We arrived at the nail salon 5 minutes late. There were 3 people working, and 3 customers already getting worked on, even though they had only been open for 5 minutes. I sheepishly mentioned that we were here for our 9:30am appointment, and sat down to wait our turn. I figured that they wouldn’t honor our appointments, but within two minutes we were in the pedicure chairs. It was nice to get that done, but I was a little bummed when I realized that I had only had 2 contractions in about 2 hours of the whole mani/pedi experience. 

We arrived home and ate lunch. I had a pickled egg and cereal (for breakfast I’d had 2 scrambled eggs). I ran up and down the stairs 10 times in hopes to get something moving. In the early morning, I figured that things would get moving by midday, and that it was possible that I’d have the baby in my arms by 3pm or 5 pm. However, it was almost noon and things had slowed down, and I started thinking that baby probably wouldn’t arrive until the late evening.

After lunch, I decided to get my double electric pump out and I pumped for 20 minutes. I only had one contraction during that whole time. After I finished, I put Emmanuel down for a nap, and I had one good contraction while he nursed. I decided that I did want to nap, and I thought, “Oh well if it makes the contractions even more spaced apart.” I felt pretty helpless that things weren’t really moving. I took about a 45 minute nap but got some really great contractions during that time. In an hour of time, I had 5 really strong contrations. I’ve had maybe 2 or 3 since then, so I guess when I look at the numbers things are progressing, but it still seems very slow to me. 

I’m not timing my contractions officially yet. I’m just trying to count how many I have each hour. I am hoping that things pick up soon! I do think that once they get going that it will almost be baby time!

2-4 Days till due date

17 Apr

Ok, I better get this down, because I’ve been busy (…busy not being in labor, that is!).

I’ve been getting up and getting beautified in the morning, in hopes that labor will decide to come on when I am well rested, well dressed, and well made up with my hair and face. I think that is the most annoying thing.  I feel like I am getting ready for a date and I am just sitting around waiting for my date to arrive at my house to pick me up… And I’m starting to think my date is standing me up. Has that happened to any ladies? You get super beautiful and spend 2.5 hours getting ready for a date, and you get stood up? That depicts my feelings at the moment.

Two days ago, I just prepared the house (at turtle speed) for mom’s arrival.  I accomplished very little, but the house was presentable by the time she arrived. Nothing too exciting happened during the day. 

That night, I had a cortisol rush and was unable to fall asleep for several hours. After I finally fell asleep, I only slept for maybe 2 hours, then I woke up and was unable to sleep. I decided to get out of bed at around 3am and read. I finally got a bit drowsy and thought I would have success falling asleep, so I returned to my bed at 4:30am. I was unable to fall asleep until after Fernando got up for work, which was at 6am that morning. I finally drifted off to sleep and was awakened at 6:40am by the sound of the children chatting with each other in the monitor. I was so bummed that I got woken up, and I was beyond exhausted for the entire day. And because I was so tired, I skipped the coffee (because I just couldn’t even think in the morning). 

Yesterday, 3 days till my due date, we went to my prenatal appointment. Right before leaving for my appointment I lost a big chunk of my music plug. I was dreamily wishing that I would arrive to my appointment and be at 5cm and baby would come that afternoon. 

At my appointment, we discovered that baby is presenting posterior, something that literally happened the night before. Baby had been facing my back but looking toward my left side for at least two months. S/he did not move out of that position, and days before I’m supposed to give birth, s/he decides to move to a less favorable position!  Silly baby. Midwife recommended hands and knees and cat/cow exercise. I felt boarderline depressed and frustrated when I learned that baby had moved. I thought, “If only baby had come one day earlier, things would have been better!” I have since come to terms with baby’s position (as of yesterday). I can still birth this baby. I can trust baby. I can trust my body. Babies can move! I feel like this is a test in my trust in my baby, my body, and God. 

Also, the juicy cervical news disappointed me for some reason. I only advanced 0.5cm from last week. I was 3cm yesterday and was 75% effaced. I know 3cm is more open than 2.5cm, but I feel like at this rate I will be pregnant for a few more months.

After my appointment, we headed to the mall.  My sister was determined that we were going to “shop this baby out.” I did spend quite a bit of time walking. Rebecca was wearing her pedometer and supposedly walked almost 5 miles yesterday. I was pretty pooped out after our day shopping. The fun part for me was that I found a top that I plan on wearing during labor, and I also got a light bathrobe for labor. Not only can I wear the robe in labor, but I really needed a light bathrobe for summertime. I wear my giant bathrobes all the time! 

Last night I decided to follow my bedtime routine a little bit more strictly, and I also took some benedryl. I slept really well, but I woke up around 1am and had period-like cramping in the style of contraction waves. They would come on every few minutes and last for a few minutes. I got up to pee probably 3 times in less than two hours. I also had several stronger contractions sprinkled in, and I kept expecting to see a bloody show. I didn’t think that I was in labor at the moment, but I thought, “Oh, I bet this means that I will be starting labor and having a baby in the next 24 hours!” I decided to go to sleep, which was easy to do thanks to the benedryl, and I figured if I kept getting woken up by contractions, that it would mean that I probably had begun active labor.

I slept fitfully the rest of the night from 2am-ish until 7am. I felt happy and refreshed in the morning. The weather was absolutely crazy, so we decided to abandon our shopping plans for the morning. It was snowing, sleeting, hailing, raining, and thundering. By late morning, mom and Rebecca went shopping and I stayed home with the kids. They got home right after I put the kids down for a nap. The only thing I did while they were gone was run up and down the stairs 10 times, and hands and knees, and dance with the kiddos.

In the afternoon, Rebecca and I set out to look to exchange out some of our body jewelry. I got a pink nose ring with a bigger stud than what I had before. Then we went to another place because Rebecca decided she wanted to get a tragus piercing. That took a really long time, but the bonus is that after 5 years, I added a little bling to my tragus piercing and exchanged out my dull silver ball with a pretty iridescent pearly one. 

After we changed out all our bling, we headed to a nail salon by my house to get a pedicure. After spending forever trying to figure out which colors we wanted, I sat down and realized it would be a super long wait until we were able to get our pedicure, and we only had about an hour until dinnertime. We decided to make an appointment first thing tomorrow morning. Rebecca was quite distressed that I might end up not pedicured for labor, and I said, “If I go in to labor and don’t have a pedicure, I don’t think I will be complaining at this point!” After that, we quickly walked to the grocery store next door and grabbed a few things plus a Starbucks coffee. We got home, ate dinner, hot pie, and ice cream, then played with the kids. That has been my day/past few days!

5 days till due date

14 Apr

Today I woke up and my immediate thought was how well I felt!  I laid in bed for a good 15 minutes, trying to decide if I had been healed of my infirmity. Nose? Feeling clear and not bone dry. Throat? Clear and happy! Sinuses? (wiggling my facial muscles) Free of obstruction. Body? Refreshed; not achey. Slight discomfort in the pelvis. Ear? Feeling better than when I’m not sick! After using great momentum to throw my legs in order to exit my bed, I realized that I still had slight congestion in my sinuses, but it felt like nothing I couldn’t handle!

I went to work and accomplished very little. I am feeling like I only have two speeds: turtle speed, and snail  speed. I decided when I woke up that I was going to take my time getting ready. It was so nice to not have to shout frantically, “Hurry up!” or “Fast, fast!” or “Let’s go!” at the kids this morning. We just did our thing and I kept my blood pressure down. 

Climbing in to the backseat of the van to buckle and unbuckle the kids was a task today. I lost the pep in my step to jump easily in to the back seat. I am comforted by the fact that I do not have to buckle or unbuckle those kids any more while pregnant!

I have been mentally distracted today as well.  I have been daydreaming about what my mom and sister are doing and feeling, and imagining the next 24 hours. In my imagination, I see myself cleaning the house somewhat leisurely, all the while my mom and sister are driving westward in to the setting sun. 

I also feel absolutely exhausted today. Everything feels like a huge chore. I meant to make a to-do list while at work today, but I couldn’t even do that. It is difficult to explain. I don’t necessarily feel tired. I just feel like I can’t make my body move the way I want it to. I would much rather just crawl in to bed.

Speaking of my bed, after my kids took an eternity to eat lunch and I put them in bed for a nap, I decided to forego trying to start my afternoon with a nap, and I opted to turn on the Relaxation track from the Hypnobirthing: The Mongan Method book’s CD.  If you have read any of my previous posts on hypnobirthing, you will note that I have an electronic copy of the book, which was great to get access to the reading material, but I suspected for along time that I was missing out on a CD that was mentioned a lot in the book. I actually decided to borrow a copy of the book from the library, and I discovered that the book does come with a CD! There are only two tracks on the CD; one is a relaxation track, and the other is about welcoming baby. I actually have not listened to the second track. 

I love the relaxation track so much. There were a few times that I woke up in the middle of the night and couldn’t get back to sleep, or a few afternoons I was feeling too accelerated to sleep, and I turned on this track and felt incredibly rested and relaxed in only 20 minutes. Words are such a powerful thing!

I really only have a few things left on my to-do list, and I am trying to decide if I want to do them tonight (with the help and mental support of my darling husband), or if I want to leave them for tomorrrow. They are:

  • Vaccuum upstairs and downstairs
  • Wash kitchen linens
  • Wash pillows and backpacks on delicate cycle
  • Put away the 4 baskets of clean laundry
  • Wash kitchen floor
  • File filing cabinet junk
  • Online shop – I need to get nursing nightgowns and amber dropper bottles for my placenta tincture I am planning on making (yep, not only am I encapsulating my placenta again, I am making a tincture, too!)
  • Tidy up the storage bins which are in our downstairs living room – right now I have girl and boy newborn clothes out and washed, and I just need to make it look… nicer.
  • Make the downstairs bathroom useable (I have been using the shower to store stuff, but I just realized I’m going to have a pretty full house of people next week, so I think I need to clear it out).
  • Clean the main bathroom. Ask mom to scrub the tub, though.

Mentally, I feel ready for baby! I will actually venture to say that I want baby out now. But, I do want baby to wait until my mom and sister arrive. So, baby, please start making your appearance in the next 24-48 hours. Thursday morning at around 10am would be a perfect time to begin labor. Can you check your schedule and confirm your availability? Thanks.

Oh, and check out the picture. Is it just me, or do I look ridiculously pregnant?  And this was T-2 minutes until I crawled in to bed, so that is why my bed is a rumpled mess still.


6 days till due date

13 Apr

Tonight, I feel like my belly and my abdominal muscles just cannot stretch any further. I feel very maxed out.

Last night, while sleeping, I noticed a distinct difference between my ease of movement at the moment compared to just 24 hours earlier. I was struggling to move from side to side. I struggled to get up to go to the bathroom. And while I was struggling, I felt the extreme cracking sensation in my pubic bones. It is almost enough for me to feel like complaining, but not quite. 

Another symptom I forgot to mention was that for the past two nights I have been getting up to pee a lot. I think I got up twice one night and three times another night. This is a big increase for me, as I had several beautiful weeks of not getting up once to pee!  It is a truly miraculous thing to sleep the whole night through while in the 3rd trimester.

As far as my illness goes, I felt bad upon waking up this morning, but I also felt well rested, even though I woke up at 6:30am. The kids stayed asleep until 7:15am and almost 8am, and then we just hung out in my bed for awhile. Once they were done snuggling, we had breakfast, we tidied up the kitchen and they were playing pretend. They happened to label me as a dragon-dinosaur, which left me feeling slightly offended 😉 I felt like a lumbering beast.

After the kitchen was cleaned up, I put a VeggieTales video on for them and took a nap. My nap was only about 20-30 minutes, but it felt really long! I still didn’t feel much better after napping, though. After the video, the kids played outside, then I got lunch together. I remembered that I had some bone broth in the freezer, so I defrosted that, chopped up some raw garlic, and spiced the broth with salt, pepper, and a dash of hot sauce, and drank in the delicious and healing liquid. 

After lunch, the kids both actually fell asleep during nap time, and I drank some tea and rested. I was quite surprised that I was unable to fall asleep, but I felt so amazingly well after the broth, tea, and the elderberry syrup that I took, that I felt borderline well! I did a little bit of administration stuff for work, and then I contemplated folding laundry, but I anticipated that we could watch one of our shows this evening and I could put clothes away while watching. However, it is already 8:30pm, and it is about too late for me to want to start watching an hour-long show.

I felt pretty optimistic this afternoon because I feel like I might avoid getting a full blown sickness. Plus, I kept my house clean ALL day long. The kitchen stayed clean from morning until evening! Plus, my clean sheets are just extra beautiful and my decluttered areas make me feel so much more peaceful.

Tomorrow I go in to work, but I am planning on leaving later and taking our time getting ready to go out the door. I’m not even sure if there is much more I can do, since in my head I planned tomorrow to be my last day to go to work before baby is born. And, I had the goal of getting everything done for my “maternity leave” by last week. I guess I did a good job of meeting my work goals since I won’t have much to do!

7 days until due date

12 Apr

Today we skipped church since I am not feeling well and the kids are still a bit under the weather. 

We had a leisurely breakfast together, and Fernando was on kitchen duty all day long. I can’t even tell you how wonderful it was to hardly do a dish and to not get up a million times to refill cups with milk and look for extra napkins. At about mid morning, I colored my hair, showered, and Fernando took the kids outside to play while I rested in bed. I just laid in bed but did not sleep. 

At noon, we reconvened for lunch, the kids got a bath, and took a nap. Once the kids were settled in their rooms, we both took a nap. When I had woken up this morning, I felt worse than I had felt yesterday. However, after my afternoon nap, I felt really refreshed and like my body was healing.

After naptime, I did some laundry and ate a bunch of chocolate. I am still at this moment craving chocolate like crazy! I reorganized the hospital suitcase, adjusted the infant carseat straps, decluttered our microwave stand (which is our problem area for clutter), decluttered our bedroom, and made up the bed with our extra set of sheets. Tomorrow, I will just have on my to-do list vacuuming and putting away laundry. Honestly, both of those tasks might just wait until Tuesday, depending on how I feel. My first priority is to lay around as much as possible and kick this cold to the curb. So, my to-do list for tomorrow might change to include drinking tea, taking a warm bath, and napping!

Today I felt about 3 more intense contractions in one hour. I compared my belly pictures from just before delivery with all three pregnancies, and based off of past belly pictures, I still have a bit to grow. My belly has felt enormously heavy all of a sudden in just the past two days. I also forgot to mention on my last update that the bones in my pubic area feel like they are expanding. Actually, they kind of just feel like they are cracking, but we will make it sound more pregnancy-official and say that they are relaxing and expanding. It still isn’t enough for me to complain about, but today I felt a burst of readiness for baby. I think that having the golden hour of cleanliness in my house paired with feeling mildly rested made me feel adventurous to tell fate that I am okay with baby coming tonight.