We are 37 weeks now and getting so close to meeting our little girl!
This past week has been rough….I am done and it has been a hard week mentally and physically. My body is really tired and it is showing and I am in pretty considerable amount of pain and back again to not really sleeping because of the pain and my heartburn has gotten worse. But….praise that baby is doing well and our appointment earlier in the week shows a healthy baby and healthy mommy! We have another appointment this coming Monday and possibly one more after that before she is scheduled to arrive. I am just praying for strength….mental, and physical strength!
I have been wanting to write down some thoughts and experiences I have been having with this pregnancy and figured towards the end would be a good time to capture this journey! What I want to remember most from this pregnancy is the peace that surrounded it and how much more I lived in the moment and found such enjoyment in the present….which coincides with my New Year's resolution so it was nice to see it being applied.
We prayed and prayed and asked for God's guidance in having all of our children but the process that brought us to deciding to have a third baby was so peaceful and so in His timing. We were done with kids…sell the stuff….done. And then I started to feel a tug on my heart in the Fall of 2012 and before even going to John spent months in prayer about it. Finally, in January 2013 I felt that God was calling me to bring this up with John and that it was the right time to bring up the subject. I remember sitting on our playroom couch after the kids were asleep and I remember how warmly he received it (I really thought he was going to flip and just be adamant that we were done…end of discussion), how much peace I had that God would know work on his heart and that God would lead John to help bring clarity and wisdom to this and through John's leadership and prayer we would know if this was a direction our family was meant to do and if not that my heart would change. This was such a peace in knowing that the right "answer" either way would be revealed and in a perfect timing and with peace for each of us either way. And then I waited. We didn't talk it through over and over and over and over like we normally do things. I didn't pester John, bring up other friends having babies, instead, we waited. We went on a vacation to Bali and didn't talk about it, we lived life, we enjoyed our summer in Washington, we talked about future plans as a family of four and didn't talk about it and then when we came back from the summer, John said that he felt the same way and that he felt that yes, he felt we our family wasn't finished. It was a beautiful process full of peace and comfort in knowing that it would all be in His timing.
This pregnancy has been so much easier and enjoyable and a beautiful experience. Yes, part of that is because physically (especially when you compare it to Graham's) it has been easier but I strongly believe that the majority of it is because of where I have been mentally and emotionally with this pregnancy. I believe that my pregnancy with Peyton was probably similar BUT I allowed the stresses of day to day life, the unknown of being a first time mom take ahold of me and not enjoy and savor and embrace the beauty of this process. It was just over 5 1/2 years from when we found out we were pregnant with Peyton to getting pregnant with this baby and it is amazing how much of a better perspective I have had with this baby. And with Graham's pregnancy and how much it lined up with our interview, job offer and move to Saudi, I allowed that stress to shadow an already difficult pregnancy. Yes this time, I felt sick and nauseous but saw it as a beautiful sign that my baby is growing and healthy and knew that it would pass. Yes, I had cramping but knew it was manageable and my body telling me to slow down. Yes, I have been exhausted, achy, feeling huge, horrible heart burn but in all that have been able to see it in perspective for what it is. I am sure there are people out there who are able to see all that and have this beautiful outlook from day one of their first pregnancy but unfortunately that wasn't me. And this time it has been a sweet time of peace, thankfulness and a deeper appreciation of the journey that I am on at this time.
And yes, if I am being honest, I have had a couple of freak out days and break down and cry days this pregnancy (even had one around 34 weeks when I said I just can't do this….not really sure what I was expecting as a solution…) especially when I think about the fact that I am having a baby and a c-section in Saudi Arabia, the whole c-section process, the recovery and stay in the hospital and cultural differences that will be in effect and then the recovery at home and that I have two little kids to still care for and am away from our family. It is overwhelming, isolating and scary at times and all those emotions have hit me at the same time on a couple of days. But for the most part and 90% of the time, we have been at peace and feel a comfort and calmness despite the challenges. We are so beyond thankful for the community…the family….we have here that has been our support, our comforters and help during this pregnancy and have offered so much and I know their offers are more than just words and that they are our support system for me, the kids and John and will be such a huge help once baby arrives. We have prepared with freezer meals and asking for help from friends in transporting kids and caring for our kids but beyond the logistically coordination, John and I have felt a peace that it will be alright, it will be a beautiful experience that has brought us closer together and we haven't let the circumstances of having a baby overseas take over.
So, I guess what I want to remember from this pregnancy is that it was time in our lives where we saw His hand and His timing and a time that we grew tremendously as a family and as a husband and wife and it was a sweet and precious time of waiting for this new member of our family. It has been such a beautiful experience to be able to be pregnant again and experience this with such a more whole and better perspective, watch my kids be so excited about the changes to come and embrace them with ease and despite all the changes in where we are living and what that brings, it has been a sweet and peaceful time for our family and we are ready for the craziness of having a newborn…and being out numbered….to start!