Friday, January 18, 2013

Baby Ball: Week 38

The end is near! I had a great doctor's visit yesterday and am looking forward to meeting our little girl in the next several days. I gained four more pounds, bringing my total gain to 26 pounds. I'm pretty proud of that number, but still a little in shock that I've gained eight pounds in just the past two weeks! All that ice cream must be doing it's job! The doctor said I have dilated some and am looking favorable to deliver soon, which was awesome news! She couldn't tell for sure if Maleah was head down, so we got to have an ultrasound and see this little kiddo's skull one last time. We didn't get to see anything else since she is so scrunched, but she does appear to have a pretty shaped head (and it is in the right position)!

Everyone asks me how I'm feeling. There's two ways for me to answer that question: lying through my teeth or being brutally honest. Usually my response is a mix of the two. :) In all honesty, I don't feel as bad as I thought I would at 38 weeks pregnant. But, I am definitely feeling the effects of carrying a full-term baby. Every time I think about listing my complaints here, I have mixed emotions. I don't mind sharing with the world some of the things that have been difficult for me. But I also don't want to hear the comments about how so-and-so had it worse, so-and-so had it better, or that I better get used to it if I ever want to get pregnant again.

Which leads me to my newest preggo-problem: Other People's Opinions. My friend Ashley Martin welcomed me to Motherhood by reminding me that the flood of other people's unsolicited advice won't stop when the baby's born. It will just continue throughout her life and I will have to suck it up and deal with it. It's really a tragedy that we judge each other's parenting skills so harshly and that we think we know better than someone because we do things differently. But, I suppose that's part of the job description and I'll learn to just grin-and-bear-it!

Blake and I have a long list of to-do's for this weekend in hopes that we are actually prepared for bringing a baby home. The biggest to-do is to finally install her car seat!! This has been on the to-do list for WEEKS and it just keeps getting bumped down the priority list! Now it's at the top and hopefully it will get done today or tomorrow. We've only had it since the summer, so you'd think we would have gotten it done by now!

This will most likely be my last post pre-baby. I can't wait to post about meeting her for the first time!!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Baby Ball: Week 36

As of today, there are three weeks and three days left until little missy's due date. So far it doesn't seem like she's really interested in making an appearance anytime too soon. She's still cookin' and I guess I'll let her finish up her time in the womb before she has to come into this cold, scary world!

I'll keep this brief because, honestly, I don't really feel much like blogging today! The jist is this: I've gained 18 pounds, am measuring right on track, and am making a tiny bit of progress towards labor. No clue as to how big Maleah is or if they "expect" me to deliver by January 27. The doctor was able to tell us that she's head down (they couldn't tell for sure last week). She hasn't "dropped" per se, but hopefully that will happen soon. Regardless of what happens, she'll be here by February 4 if I have anything to do with it!!

Pregnancy has had its ups and downs... mostly ups, but the downs have been pretty rough! The past few weeks actually haven't been so bad - I have been able to just take it easy and enjoy all of it. I've had some restless nights, some sickness, some backaches, but I'm learning to just embrace it!

I'm excited to see how the next few weeks unfold. And although I'm anxious to have Maleah here now, I can be patient..... I think!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Obligatory New Year's Post

It's a new year and I can't not write about it. I tried to stay away from writing this post, but it kept nagging at me. After blogging for nearly ten years, I'm practically required to write about the turning of the annual calendar.

At the end of 2011, I was rejoicing because the year was O-V-E-R. It was the toughest year in a long time. The wicked tornado that came through on April 27 radically changed the course of my life in just a matter of minutes. Our first months of marriage were scary, but everything ended up okay. I thought 2012 would be the year to really dig our heels in and enjoy the married life.

And for several months, 2012 was great! I had a great job and a permanent teaching position seemed definite. Until it wasn't. My contract with the board of education ended May 24 with no set-in-stone placement for the upcoming school year. And on May 26, I found out I was pregnant.

That should have been the happiest time of my life! But, it wasn't. I can't lie - although I was, of course, thrilled about being pregnant, I couldn't help but fear for how we were going to take care of this little life without me having a permanent job.

Interviews came and went... and deep down, I think word got around that I was preggo. I honestly can't think of any other reason why I went to so many interviews and got zero job offers. I had excellent recommendations, a 4.0 GPA, plenty of experience, and lots of heart... and I had a baby on board. But, it all worked out when I started applying at the University of Alabama. It took just a matter of days to get hired once I posted my application and I eventually was hired for a job that I love!! It's perfect for where we are in life and I love working for the University.

So, 2012 wasn't the year I thought it would be, but it was pretty amazing! We joined First Baptist and have loved getting involved there. We have formed lots of lasting friendships, met LOTS of new babies, and watched a bazillion movies. It's been a year of ups and downs... and of course, the best "up" was finding out we were pregnant!

As I look forward to 2013, there's really (of course) only one thing on my mind - meeting this little girl!! Her due date is TWENTY-FIVE days away. That's 3 1/2 weeks, folks! I'm trying to be patient, but it's oh-so-hard!!! Not much else seems that imporant now - just getting her here, taking care of her, and watching how she grows. Can't wait!

I can't say that I really have any resolutions this year. Usually I'm all about some goal-setting, but I think my resolution is to let go of goal-setting. Better yet, maybe I should take the word "productive" out of my vocabulary. I use that word frequently to beat myself up and I think it's just time I stop. It's great to be productive, to get things accomplished, and to have something to show for a day's work. But productivity can become an idol and in some ways, it definitely has become one in my own life. I judge my day based on how productive I was, which is just silly. Guess what? That's just silly.

So this year, I'm challenging myself to stop challenging myself. (Can I do that?) I'm just going to enjoy the wild ride that is parenthood and see how it goes. Take it easy and take it all in.