Sometimes We Need to Let Go

7/28/17 10:30 am

Pregnancy is crazy. Emotional. Enlightening. Brutal.

But then again, is this very much different from life in general?

I stumbled upon a video on Facebook recently that really spoke to me and reminded me of our real purpose in life. We’re not meant to do this alone. We’re meant to depend on each other, and most importantly on God.

The Power of the Impossible – Blake Templeton

I try not to get too religious or preachy in my blog, but this is so close to my heart right now that I had to share it. One thing I would add on from my own personal beliefs is that we do have to take action and fulfill our “portion of responsibility” (Divine Principle, Sun Myung Moon), but from there, we have to have total faith that God will step in and bring us where we need to go; He will make possible whatever is the best outcome for us in any given situation.

Back to my pregnancy – I’m due on Monday, so I have about 3 days. My son was born 6 days early and then my daughter was born 1 day early. Up until two days ago or so, I was obsessing over when this baby is coming and if I should do anything to help speed him along (not talking induction yet, but through “at home” methods of ripening). I’m not even sure why I felt such an urge for him to arrive faster. I guess something to do with getting more and more uncomfortable and stretched out and therefore being too impatient and harsh with my two children at home (the ones outside my belly). But then I had this realization. Why am I trying to rush things? This baby will come when he’s good and ready. I think God purposely made it impossible for a woman to know exactly when she will go into labor (medical interventions aside) as a reminder that we can’t control everything in our lives, and we shouldn’t want to. Some things are better left up to God, Nature, the Universe, whatever you like to call it. In fact, it’s incredibly refreshing to give up some of the pressure and expectation that you put on yourself to control everything; to make sure everything “goes right” (as if you always really know what’s right). Sometimes, things just won’t “go right”, and that’s okay. Life is in its entirety a learning process. We’re not meant to “solve” it or “win” as if it’s a game, but just to live every day learning and growing and bettering ourselves one experience at a time. And in turn, helping others.

7/30/17 1:30 pm

So, if you read the time stamp up there, you’ll see that I wrote that bit a couple days ago. I had it saved as a draft. That same day, at 2:20 pm, my water broke, kick starting my labor, and my beautiful baby boy was born 3 1/2 hours later. 

What are the chances! 

Anyway, here I am now in my cozy little room. My hospital stay has been lovely – as it always is. As a mom, it’s incredibly refreshing to be able to lounge around watching TV and ordering room service (albeit in the pain of recovering from childbirth) in peace and quiet and have someone ELSE wait on YOUR hand and foot for a change!

I’m basking in the glow of newbornness. His smell, his gentle sighs, the little quivers of his body and pouts of his tiny lips.

The wait is over! He came on his own time. Perfect, perfect timing.

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Things I’m Going to Miss

So, I’ve been really trying to be present and appreciative and zen like; reminding myself to live in the moment and give my growing baby my undivided love and attention as often as possible.

This may be the last week I can really stretch my “appreciation” for this pregnancy though… As time goes on, I’m getting more and more to the point of “I’m so done!” Baby feels like he’s just going to drop right out.

But I want to be able to say I really cherished each moment (to the best of my ability in between pulling my hair out running after these other two) of this last pregnancy. So, every night, I take a few minutes to pray (My prayers tend to go like this, “Please help my children behave; please give me strength, patience, compassion, kindness, love, more patience…”) and read Scripture and try to get into Mommy/Fetus mode. To zone in and to connect. Tonight, I’m connecting through writing. Not thinking too deeply; just saying what comes to mind at this moment. With that, I bring you:

Things I’m not Going to Miss about Being Pregnant

  1. The stiffness/soreness in my neck and shoulders
  2. The extreme sensitivity of my right hip (I think it’s a pinched nerve type thing. Possibly sciatic nerve.)
  3. Pregnancy triggered hand eczema (started with my first pregnancy. Got it under control in this final pregnancy with diet restriction and creams! #Win!)
  4. Heartburn (all three, but I think my first was the worst)
  5. Lady issues (This is code because I don’t want to disturb anyone with TMI. Started with my second pregnancy but I have it TOTALLY under control in this pregnancy due to…PROBIOTICS! My God, this stuff is amazing. Absolute LIFESAVER)
  6. Aching bones in pelvic area especially when sleeping (and only being able to sleep on my sides! Argh!)
  7. Being swollen
  8. Having a sore butt and thighs after any drive longer than 30 minutes
  9. Not being able to bend down properly
  10. Numb wrists and hands (this is a totally new symptom that I never experienced in my other pregnancies. Started like 3 weeks ago and it’s super weird and disconcerting…hoping it goes away right quick after I have this little one!)
  11. Lumbering around like a cave man. So….heavy….
  12. Waddling around like a duck. I’m usually pretty good at avoiding this signature move, but as it gets this close, it’s hard to avoid…
  13. Feeling all the pressure of this growing being stretching me out and moving my organs out of the way. As a result, peeing all the time, stomach feeling smaller, lungs being restricted…
  14. Trying to keep two kids unharmed, fed, clothed, bathed, and behaved, while feeling all of the above. Especially bedtime OH MY GOD. We fell into the habit of all lying together until they fall asleep…(long story). But both want me to face them at the same time, they’re either fighting or totally distracted by everything, they take FOREVER to fall asleep, etc etc (I can’t wait for daylight savings again. The light seems to make a huge difference) ARGHH

Things I’m Definitely Going to Miss about Being Pregnant

  1. The kicks! And punches and hiccups and somersaults. It’s the weirdest, coolest, unexplainable feeling…a little human squirming around inside. And trying to figure out: Is that a foot? An elbow? Is he making a snow angel?
  2. Trying (and failing miserably) to take the perfect video of all the exquisite, excited movements. I swear they can tell when you turn the camera on. It’s like they get stage fright.
  3. Certain enhanced body parts…
  4. Lounging around with my older two as they rub/pat my belly, feeling his movements and giggling; pillow talking with them about what the baby is doing and what he’s going to be like
  5. Never being really alone; having a little sidekick with me at all times
  6. The excitement; the expectancy. What will he look like? What will he be like? How will the dynamic in our family change? He’ll fit right in like a missing puzzle piece we never knew we had and bring an overwhelming sense of calm and joy to our family. Right? Right?!
  7. Looking at people with doe eyes and having them offer me their seat or to cut them in line hehe…
  8. The right to act completely b*tchy now and again and be excused…
  9. The extra warmth and compassion from my husband – more spontaneous meals out, more cuddling (his hands are definitely my favorite to have on my belly), more attention, more taking the kids out so I can relax, just all around more lovin’
  10. Watching the perfectly formed (well, after he gets past looking like an alien) tiny black and white skeleton bouncing around on the Ultrasound screen
  11. Baby showers! I had to plan my own for my first cause no one thought to throw me one… Skipped it for my second. But by my third, my two closest friends here in NJ decided to plan one! Yay! It was really small, but it was perfect. Just sitting around catching up with friends, eating yummy food, opening presents (Yay free stuff!), playing games, and overall relaxing and enjoying good conversation. Nothin else like it
  12. Hearing baby’s tiny, yet strong and reassuring heartbeat on the Doppler
  13. People being more understanding toward me (i.e. not glaring at me as my 4 and 2 year old whisk by almost knocking them over, but just smiling knowingly and forgivingly). Not everyone, though. Some people are just dang harsh!
  14. Having that ultimate feminine silhouette. Despite the general weight gain, pregnant bellies are just so cute and endearing! And one out of every 30 photos is actually quite flattering!! Not to mention – absolutely no expectation to have a flat middle for once – Yay! I can relax and not suck it in for 9 whole months!

There are so many fascinating, incredible experiences and stages in life. Everything has a beginning and everything has an end. It’s bittersweet, but in a way, comforting. I wish all of you strength and peace, appreciation and love for whatever you may be going through right now. Every situation, good and bad, presents an opportunity for growth and a lesson learned. Every single experience makes us more human.

Welp! It’s an hour and a half past my bedtime! Good night!

Caffeine

So I’ve never been much of a coffee person. At least not a habitual drinker. I partake in coffee for the sake of socialization. I’m a social drinker. I certainly enjoy a Mocha Frappachino or a cafe mocha every now and then.

That being said, I’ve never experienced much of a reaction to caffeine. Never in all my 27 years have I noticed it making me more alert or keeping me awake at night (or any time of day for that matter).

Until last night.

I suppose I miraculously discovered the magical threshold. Turns out I’d just never tried drinking enough coffee. Or enough on an empty stomach. Or enough while pregnant? There could be all kinds of contributing factors, but all I know is, after having a medium Frappe Mocha from McDonald’s (which honestly looked to me like it should have been called a large – what was that like 4 cups worth? At least 3…) around 4 pm, I could not for the life of me turn my brain off come 11, 12, 1 in the morning. I started to really worry that I was somehow starting to develop insomnia (which I’ve heard from friends can be really annoying and sometimes scary). I lay on this side, I switched to that side, I sat on the rocker, I turned on the AC, I turned off the AC, I took a break and browsed my phone for 10 minutes, then tried it all again, all to no avail. My mind was racing a thousand miles an hour. On top of that, my baby was excitedly performing a full on acrobatic routine in my belly. I started to worry that I had really messed him up… And then my worry continued on to other things…if I was really prepared for labor and delivery, if I would be strong enough, if I would have him prematurely, if something would be wrong with him, if something is wrong with me, Can I handle 3 kids? What am I gonna do? What if they all fight every night and NO ONE. EVER. sleeps?!! Luckily, as if on cue, my son woke up and came to my room and lay next to me. That was actually surprisingly comforting. Kind of snapped me out of my little panic attack. I held his hand and my anxiety dissipated. Of course I still couldn’t sleep… and just as I was finally drifting off a while later, his sister came to join us (*sigh… what else is new…), which woke me up again and got me started again on this seemingly endless cycle. I think I ended up actually falling asleep around 3 or something. Got a good 3 and a half hours in! Hooray!

All in all, a learning experience. I FINALLY get what all the fuss is about! I finally understand how powerful caffeine is and how it affects people. I’ve also resolved to NEVER do that to myself again.

Note: Before you pounce on me, I know it’s not advisable to have that much caffeine on any given day while pregnant (I repeat; I did not know this medium would be such a large medium…). Up to this point, I have strictly abided by my midwives’ recommendations of no more than 2 cups of coffee a day, and I very rarely even have that. Caffeine from chocolate? Well, that’s another story…

Other note: If you think that cup is as funny as I think it is, you can find it here.

Third and Final Pregnancy Bucket List

Soon after I found out I was pregnant again, I created a list of things I wanted to do this pregnancy that I never got around to (or never had the energy to) during my first two pregnancies. Just for fun, I thought I’d share with you the items on that list:

1. Exercise every other day (eek! I’m definitely not exercising every other day at this point, but generally twice a week which is still better than what I did with my first two. *fistpump*)

2. Gain within 25 lbs and no more (ok let’s not talk about this…)

3. Limit sugar and wheat (they cause hand eczema breakouts and other annoying pregnancy symptoms. Oh and fat. Doin pretty good on the wheat, not as good on the sugar…)

4. Take Pinterest-worthy pregnancy announcement photos (Check!)

5. Take cute gender reveal photos (Check!)

6. Do daily Scripture reading (failing badly at this one)

7. Take progression photos – same spot, same angle weekly (haven’t missed a week!)

8. SPOIL myself – for once in my life (or recent life that is), buy something cute for myself and no one else, stop by Starbucks just because, let people help me, ASK for help, etc.

(Excluded all the other good stuff every expecting mom should do like get good sleep and take prenatals)

While we’re at it, just thought I’d add a few bullets on…

Things I’ve Never Wanted as a Pregnant Woman, Ever:

1. To have strangers rub my belly

2. To have photos taken of my naked belly (at least not to be shared by any public means)

3. To have children (including my own) poke my belly like I’m the Pillsbury dough boy

4. To have people who don’t know me give me instructions on how to behave during pregnancy

5. To put earbuds on my belly so my baby can listen to music (sorry if you’re into that! Just never made any sense to me)

6. To wear a two piece swimsuit anywhere past the first trimester (ok the latest was 16 weeks but that was with my first when I didn’t show much at all yet)

7. To hear how enormous I am/how I look like I’m due any minute or to be asked if I’m absolutely sure it’s not twins (for the record, I’m gonna get bigger, guys – a LOT bigger. Trust me; I’ve seen it happen.)

8. To have artwork done on my pregnant belly (no matter how famous or talented the artist)

9. To pop Tums every 4 hours, pee every 30 minutes, groan and moan when trying to get comfortable enough to sleep, pant up and down stairs, go on a sushi fast (God I miss sushi), watch obsessively and cry as stretch marks slowly develop, be exhausted by 4 pm, etc etc…

Sigh. Pregnant life.


Hanging in there at 32 weeks! So close and yet so far…