Saturday, March 19, 2011

If I see one more lemon...

I'm not sure what's been worse about this pregnancy, the feeling sick all the time or the lemons that life has been incessantly pelting us with. I get that there's always going to be trials in life, but its just overwhelming when you aren't quite done with one battle and another one starts. Its basically a never ending list of bad days that have really tainted my pregnancy with a ton of terrible memories. I turn 30 this fall, and honestly? I'm pretty ready to say "good riddance!" to my 20's.

The custody battle with the kids hasn't ended quietly (she tried to disregard the orders again the 1st night we got a visit and our amazing lawyer had to put the fear of God into her.). I would be SHOCKED if she didn't keep pulling her crazy antics, since she's been pulling them with increasing malice and crazy as long as Sheldon and I have been together, but at least we've seen their beautiful faces again, and that was so great for our souls.

The most recent lemons we've been pelted with have been materialistic and financial. We currently don't have any cars. We've been getting by with just one for over a month since Sheldon's died, but then mine died, too, when we were 15 minutes away from the kids' school. We were going to surprise them with lunch and see them for the 1st time in 2 months. Needless to say, that sucked. My parents have been extremely graciously letting Sheldon drive my mom's Explorer and giving me rides to work. Then yesterday, my mom's Explorer crapped out, too. Tonight, he took his mom's car to work and hopefully, my mom's car will be fixed tomorrow and my dad can get back to work fixing Sheldon's. On top of that, we're waiting on tax money (which will be decreased thanks to my stupid student loans) to purchase a mini van. With about 5 weeks left, we're getting down to the wire and I'm getting pretty nervous about the situation. But God has never let us down before, so we have no reason NOT to trust His provision at this point.

Speaking of 5 weeks to go... I have a big baby growin' in my ever expanding belly! At30 weeks exactly, he was estimated at 3lbs 9oz in his ultrasound. They didn't estimate it on Wednesday (31w2d) at our weekly scan because they only do it every other week. But my doctor is pleased as punch with the way everything's going. I've gained 4 pounds total now (which I'm amazed at, especially considering how huge I'm feeling), my blood pressure is on the high side of normal, but he wasn't concerned (which I was also pretty amazed about), and everyone keeps gushing about how perfect Eli is. I mean everyone. The ultrasound tech, the nurse, my OB, etc. Its the best feeling ever. Thursday (31w3d), I went to see the high risk OB. I was a little bit nervous about it (and Sheldon went in with his feathers already ruffled) because we'd heard horror stories about how mean they get, how they were going to lecture me about my blood sugars (which aren't glorious these days...), tell me I wasn't doing things right, etc. It was a pleasant surprise. Yes, he told me my a1c and blood sugars are too high, but he just said it once and moved on, content that I'm seeing my endocrinologist and that we're working on it. He did an extensive ultrasound and did estimate the weight. We were expecting somewhere around 4 and a half pounds. Imagine our surprise when he said, "5lbs 2oz." BIG BOY!!! Thankfully, that's not excessively large, just puts him in the 80th percentile. He also used the word perfect to describe Eli, which keeps this mommy calm. He wants to check me again at 36 weeks (especially since my OB is planning on a 37 week induction) so he can consult on the healthiest delivery options for the baby. He said that if it looks like Eli's going to be 9lbs or more, he's advising for a c-section. He told us that babies over 9lbs run a higher risk of shoulder dislocation, so C's are easiest on big babies. Honestly? I don't care either way. I never have. When I was 19 and first diagnosed with diabetes, I started having doctors tell me I'd be delivering via C-section if I was able to have children (so really, be pregnant much less having a perfect baby is apparently miraculous). My mom had C's with my brother and me, and that also put me at a higher likelihood for having one. I don't have, and never have had, a romantic vision of vaginal delivery. I've never wanted a natural, pain-med-free delivery, so that didn't give me some evil idea about c-sections being the easy way out, against the way God intended babies to be born. I thank God for medical developments! I want to give birth the way that's going to put the least amount of stress on me and my baby. So my birth plan is to go in, have the OB's tell me which way they think is best and why (my doctor is AMAZING at giving us his reasons for stuff, which we have very much appreciated) and go from there. No stubborn clinging to a romanticized vision that I've turned into my birth plan. Nope. I'm gonna cry and bleed and end up with a beautiful baby with massive cheeks in my arms either way.

My last day at work will be April 1st, and I will spend the 3 weeks between then and Eli's arrival nesting like a fiend. Lately, every time I've woken up with the nesting urge, I have to work and come home just drained. I'm there for 3 hours and feel wasted afterwards. Its a combination of not having a tremendous amount of energy as it is and the raging stupidity and ridiculousness I deal with there just draining me. I can't WAIT.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

sweet relief

Ahhhh... it feels really good.

My blood pressure has been on the rise a bit here lately. Not high enough to be pre-eclampsia, but high enough to raise eyebrows and make me afraid of bed rest. We've very obviously attributed these spikes to the stress we've been plagued with. But as of today, life is calming down and becoming so much more beautiful. Today, our custody battle ended. And it ended very much in our favor. The best part is that we get the kids back. We get to get things back to normal just in time to make them all crazy. But I'm over the moon elated and can't wait to hug and kiss their sweet faces.

I'm also about to eliminate the other needless stress in my life: quitting my job. I'm going to spend the last month of my pregnancy spending all my energy (and there's really not that much of it...) nesting and getting ready for my little bundle of cheeks. Oh, based on his ultrasounds yesterday, he has HUGE cheeks. I love it. I have chipmunk cheeks, my niece had 'em, he's one of us.

I'm really eager to settle into my new life, where my job is to care for my baby, care for the big kids when we're fortunate enough to be a family of 5, cook dinner, and wash clothes. I'm even getting a minivan to fully secure this role. I'm not sure how long I'll be able to stay in this role, but I'm blessed to get it as long as I will.

God is good.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

T-minus 8 weeks

I have officially hit 29 weeks. That means I have been aware that I'm pregnant (and, yunno, throwing up) for 26 weeks. When you say it in weeks, it doesn't seem that long. When you say "for 6 months", it sounds longer. When you live it, it feels like infinity.

I'm excited. I'm starting to get nervous about a few things, mostly nursing and the changes it will bring to our time with the big kids (who we are still desperately missing, but hopeful that after court next week, will be getting back to some semblance of normalcy with.) Emotionally, I'm so ready. I don't really sleep more than 2 or 3 hours at a time now, so the sleep deprivation isn't that scary. One of the perks of being a [step]mommy and not just a new-mommy-in-waiting is that I have been able to reflect on my experiences with them, which helps me prepare for the challenges ahead. I am sad when I think about all the things I wish I'd done differently so far, and grateful that God gives us opportunities every day to be better, to love better. The way that those 2 kids have changed my heart has shown me so fully that God called me to motherhood, and I'm humbled. Whenever I get frustrated with them, He inevitably reminds me (not instantly, but eventually... when I'm ready to hear) what a huge privilege He's given me, trusting me with these people that ultimately belong to Him. That should be terrifying, but somehow it's not. It gives me perspective to see how I need to shape and change my own walk, how I can live my life more completely for Him, by His standards and teachings, to better model it for them. We are so deliberate about modelling marriage for them, showing them how a couple is meant to love. They see us argue, and they always see us make up. We strive to show them our imperfections and are intentional about telling them that parents aren't perfect, that we make mistakes, but that we try our best and that the only perfect person is Jesus. This is true for every type of relationship they will have in life. Relationships are not the only thing we are commanded to model for our children, so I have lots of opportunities for growth! As much as I'm excited to cuddle and kiss Eli, I'm also excited to teach him to pray, to apologize when he's wrong, and to have a heart that longs for Jesus. The day Cherie was baptized, I was crying. To watch this little person that I love so much declare her love for our Lord and her desire to live for His glory was huge! I can't wait for the day I see my sons do the same, and I know I will be just as teary and joyful.

That really wasn't where I was planning on going with this entry. I was planning on gushing about how we're pre-registered at the hospital, that Eli's healthy and great, and how the plan right now is to be admitted on Easter Sunday to get things started and give birth on Monday, April 25th. I want to nest, and thankfully my heartburn has been obliging and letting me do tons of laundry and organize things to start situating Eli's stuff. But I got distracted with by the most important and rewarding aspect of motherhood. I mean, the simplest moments of joy are when they smile at you, when they hug and/or kiss you, hearing them laugh, etc. But the eternal joy is being a part of showing your children the most important thing in life: God. That's the mission field God has called me to, and I am a very willing worker.

So, yea. We'll celebrate the resurrection of our King, and then we'll celebrate the birth of our precious gift from Him. Sounds like a pretty great way to end the month of April, doesn't it?