This post may be a little disorganized because I want to try to answer the questions people have already asked us, and this post is probably going to be VERY long... but I KNOW what everyone really wants to see are her very first pictures:
Maleah Kathryn Ball
Due January 27, 2013
Current Length: Approx. 6 inches head to booty
Current Weight: 7 oz
Here you can see the back of her head and her spine, and those little ridges are her tiny ribs!
Her little profile!
This is Daddy's favorite picture. She's looking right at the camera. Mama still thinks it's a little creepy!
The "potty shot"!! One of MANY she was so eager to give! I just love this picture because her little legs look like frog's legs!
Still in shock that we are the parents of a little GIRL!
I was SO worried that our baby wouldn't cooperate for the 3 o'clock appointment. I was MOST concerned with whether or not she was healthy, so I just reminded myself all day that I just needed to be content with finding out if our baby was okay - we could find out the gender later if we needed to. Three of my cousins recently had shy babies at their afternoon anatomy scans, so I kept preparing myself for the let-down. But, as soon as the tech put the ultrasound wand on my belly, Maleah was moving and wiggling and flipping around like CRAZY! And she gave us several glimpses of her girly parts! So much so that we actually didn't get a lot of still photos of her other parts!! In the video they gave us, we can see her little toes and fingers and can see her stretch out and curl up, flip, kick, and wave. We've only watched the video 4 times so far... ;)
It took only about 45 seconds for the tech to say, "It's a girl!" I know my jaw dropped, and I'm certain Blake's did too! I said, "Are you SURE!?!?" Blake and I just KNEW it was a boy. For a few weeks early on, I thought it was a girl because I was so sick and the heart rate was high. But, once I wasn't sick anymore, I just had a gut feeling it was a boy! So, needless to say, we were completely shocked. During the ultrasound, I just kept looking at Blake and looking at the screen in complete disbelief that WE are having a GIRL. We had already bought a few boy outfits on clearance!!! I had already picked out boy bedding, boy outfits, boy STUFF. But... it didn't take long to get excited about picking out GIRL stuff!!! We obviously would have been happy either way, we couldn't help but laugh that Surprise Baby surprised us again!
She looked perfect. No signs of anything to worry about. Her little heart looked great, her spine was the most beautiful spine I've ever seen (not to mention the ONLY spine I've ever seen!), and that little brain is probably halfway filled already with Daddy's history stories. She measured right on track for her gestational age and Dr. Ray said we can see her again in about 2 months if we choose to do the 3D/4D scan!
Our families are THRILLED! Most of Blake's family thought it was a boy, just like we did! My mom PRAYED we were having a girl because she already has two ALL BOY grandsons. She was over-the-moon excited and honored that Maleah is named after her...
...so, about Maleah's name! I'm just going to make a LONG story as short as I can: Blake and I decided to choose names several weeks ago. Our boy name was easy because we had talked about it before we even got married (I'll have to save it for later!). All I knew about a girl was that I really wanted her to have my mom's initials (MK - her name is Mary Kathryn). Originally, I thought I'd want to name her Morgan Kate. But, one day the name Maleah popped into my head - it was a name I have always liked, I just hadn't thought about it in a while. I texted Blake and asked if he even liked it and he said yes! I'm all about name meanings, so I looked it up and found that Maleah is a variation of the name "Mary" - my mom's first name!!! It also plays on my sister's name, "Leigh". So, it's like killing three birds with two names! We get to honor my mom, my sister, and me (since my first name is Kathryn) with this sweet little name for our sweet baby girl!
We are already SO in love with her and we are completely in awe of what a gift she is. The best way to describe how I feel is "unworthy". I pray for her (and us!) constantly; not only praying for her health, but also praying for the woman she is going to become. As soon as the idea of having a girl settled with me, I thought, "I have to start praying Proverbs 31 over her!". Blake and I believe Psalm 129, which says, "Like arrows in the hands of a warrior, so are children born in one's youth... blessed is he whose quiver is full of them." We are not a Quiver-full couple in the "traditional" sense of the word, but we do believe that God will give us the number of children that will make our "quiver" full. And it is our job to sharpen our children and set them out, like arrows, in the direction God is calling them. It is a huge responsibility, and we are just completely honored to be given this opportunity.
I can't wait to see this little girl in person, but until then, I am just enjoying letting her grow!
Now for the boring part: about ME! :)
Quick update on pregnancy:
- At one day shy of 18 weeks, I am feeling really great! I have FINALLY gotten back up to my pre-pregnancy weight and will hopefully gain weight steadily from here on out. I was really proud when I got on the scale and saw those magic numbers! I don't wish morning sickness on ANYBODY, but if you have it, I pray Zofran works for you the way it has worked for me!
- My appetite is great! The only MAJOR food "group" I can't eat = SWEETS! It gets worse every day. Somehow chocolate Teddy Grahams are okay, but anything sweeter than that is just plain gross. I wish this is how I felt about sweets when I'm not pregnant!
- The little bump is ever-growing and is still very low (which makes me look like I'm carrying a boy!), but it's starting to move upwards as well as out, if that makes sense. For my birthday, I got a pair of maternity jeans, two dresses, and two shirts from Motherhood. I can wear most of my old shirts, but most of my jeans are goners. I can still wear dress pants with the Bella Band, but the pressure it puts on my stomach when I wear jeans is too uncomfortable now.
That's all, folks!!!