Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Things For Which I am Thankful

When life is crazy and confusing, it's nice to just stop and think about all the things there are to be thankful for in my life and in this beautiful world. The past few days have been very emotionally draining. My flesh wants be angry with God, to find him guilty of forgetting about little old me and my need for a job. But my Spirit knows that this is the time to worship Him, to recount His blessings, and to rest in His goodness.

So, I started thinking about things for which I am thankful. And I wanted to share. :)

1. The not-so-great insurance I have. It may be not-so-great, but at least I have something to help with the cost of pregnancy. 
2. Bethel Church's worship albums. And hymns. 
3. Daydreams of holding our new baby in just six short months and singing the sweet words of those songs and hymns over that tiny little life. 
4. The way God instantly begins moving when I finally submit my will to His.
5. A husband who dotes on me (spoils me may be more accurate).
6. The affection of my furry babies. :) 
7. The encouragement, prayers, and support of friends in a time when it feels like life is against me.
8. Uno. Even though I lose almost every game. 
9. Coffee. Well, Zofran first, then coffee. 
10. Time to rest, time to breathe, time to reflect. 

I'll stop at 10 today because I'm tempted to write that I'm thankful for my DVR, which has kept me company in the wee hours of the morning when I can't sleep. Okay, okay.

11. The DVR, which keeps me company in the wee hours of the morning when I can't sleep. 

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, "Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances for this is God's will for you who belong to Jesus Christ." 

Monday, July 16, 2012

The Scary Security of the Sovereignty of God

Like most Christians, I struggle with the idea that God is sovereign. That He is the orchestrator of life and that all things happen under His command. And that when bad things happen, He is somehow working them out for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).

When we found out we were expecting, I had to come face to face with this struggle. The idea that by the time we got the "big fat positive," everything about our baby had already been determined was overwhelming. Pregnant moms spend hours upon hours figuring out how they can do everything just right so that they will produce a healthy baby. But I already knew that the health and development of Baby Ball are in God's hands. From the color of BB's hair to the makeup of its DNA to its personality - already determined by our loving Creator.

There are things I can do to help BB's development - take vitamins, sleep on my left side at night, avoid roller coasters and high-contact sports, and so on. But at the end of the day, it is God who is in control. And trusting Him that He knows best is the scariest and yet the most secure experience yet.

It's scary because I know it's out of my hands. That doesn't stop me from taking care of myself and the baby. It doesn't stop me from applying to every single job that opens up. It doesn't stop me from praying for the miraculous. I have to do what I can do and let Him do the rest. And sometimes, He tells me to stop doing. That's even scarier, but it usually ends with amazing results!

But it's secure because I know it's in His hands. Knowing that He has always been faithful to me is the best reminder that His sovereignty is pure. I trust that when hard times come, He is going to be faithful. Not because of anything I have done, but because the glory will be His in the end. And when all is going well, I often find myself in awe of his favor and mercy. I rest easy in the sovereignty of God because I know this life is fleeting. My treasures are in Heaven and as long as my perspective stays on the eternal, I can be at peace with whatever comes my way.

I guess I should put a disclaimer that, as far as we know, BB is perfectly healthy. I don't want to scare anyone into thinking this is a post about grappling with bad news. We have only had good news, and I pray that continues. I also don't have any bad news about the job hunt (although I don't really have any good news, either!!!). But these things have just been on my heart... trusting God, trusting His will, and knowing that He is forever faithful.

Isaiah 55:8-9 ~ "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the Lord. "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts."

Psalm 71:20 ~ "Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up."

James 1:2-3 ~ "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance."

Friday, July 6, 2012

Baby Ball: Week 11

I promise I won't be updating weekly, but we had another appointment today and I decided I want to update with each appointment (once a month). So... consider last week's post a freebie!

Not a whole lot has changed since last week. But, there are a few exciting changes!!

Weeks: 10 weeks, 5 days

Weight: 112 and some ounces (-5 pounds from starting weight)

Cravings: Fruits and veggies! Yay! Potatoes, corn on the cob, zucchini, squash, celery, watermelon, strawberries... that's as adventurous as I've been so far, but it feels good to be eating fresh foods again. Salad is also making a comeback, but it depends on the day. My appetite is still not 100% back, but I feel like I'm slowly working my way back up to eating the way I want/need to. 

Aversions: Still turned off by beef. We walked by the beef case at Publix earlier and I couldn't even LOOK at it! Meat in general is not appetizing, but I can tolerate chicken or pork. 

Struggles: Constipation. It has finally started to cause some discomfort, though it really isn't that bad. I'm also having a hard time sleeping - I wake up around 2 and usually can't sleep again until 4. 

Triumphs: After many suggestions regarding prenatal vitamins, I finally settled with taking 2 Flinstone chewables a day and taking a DHA supplement at night. It's working perfectly!

Bump: It's not a "bump" per se, but my tummy is definitely expanding. Most likely it is due to bloating more than anything, but it's there! I'll post a picture next time... it's still not really noticeable to anyone but me and Blake. 

Symptoms: "Morning" (aka: All Day) sickness is starting to slack off a bit, though I'm hesitant to say that in fear that I'll jinx myself! I am still taking the Zofran, but I can usually wait a few hours into the day before taking it (and I've found 1/2 pill works well some days). I have more energy than I did during weeks 5-9, but I still need a nap/rest in the afternoons!

Gender: Still think it's a boy. Although the baby's heart rate today has me wondering if it might be a girl! :) 

So today's doctor visit was an exciting one!! We got to see Baby Ball (BB) again and could clearly see the little heart flickering away. BB measured about 2 inches from head to hiney and the heart rate was 179 beats per minute. Here's the first public viewing of little Baby Ball:

That's the head towards the top. The two little white circles around the middle are its hands, then the torso, and it's legs are curled up a bit at its bottom. I was hoping we could see it move, but the tech said it was probably sleeping. The doctor said everything looked absolutely perfect! We won't get to see BB again until the gender reveal ultrasound at the end of August or beginning of September. Next visit, we'll just get to hear the heart through the Doppler. 

Today the pregnancy became more real than ever. Seeing the baby take shape (rather than just being a blob, like last time) is just amazing! The whole time we were in the ultrasound room, I kept having to remind myself that this is our baby, not someone else's! It's a heart-stopping moment and hearing that speedy little heartbeat reminded me that everything is as it should be. God planned, ordained, and crafted this little baby and He knows what He is doing! 

So, there's the scoop on BB for now! I'll update again on the topic in one month... maybe sooner if I can't contain myself! :)