Another Day Down

I did it!

Well, technically, I've still got three hours to go before I can proclaim myself successful. But I'm feeling pretty confident, so I'm going to just proclaim it now. I DID IT!

No, I haven't had the baby yet. But that's what I did... I didn't have the baby today!

I know it would be a mother's dream to pick out the date and the circumstances that her child could be born in. I do not have that novelty. But ever since we found out that we were due April 4th, my first thought was, "Aww, I hope I don't have the baby on March 30th!"

Why, you ask?

Today was my sister-in-law's birthday. I really didn't want to have the baby on her birthday. I would have hated my sister-in-law to share! She's already a twin and will never have her own 'real' day, but I didn't want to add to it by making her share with someone else.

So, I did it.

Baby Girl, you can come anytime now. No problem.
Well... if I could just be bold enough to ask for one more favor... would you mind waiting until after this Sunday?

It's April 1st. April Fool's Day. I know it's not a real holiday or anything, but I'm not sure I could get anyone to believe that I WAS going into labor that day. Just another two more days. That's it. I'm honestly not asking for too much. Am I?
If our little one doesn't come on her own beforehand, we're planning a c-section to go and get her on Wednesday, April 4th. I'm embarrassed to admit that that is my aunt and uncle's anniversary. Their 25th anniversary. But I had very little to do with organizing the date for the c-section let alone setting my due date! April 3rd is my grandpa's 96th birthday, so I won't be able to do much with stepping on someone's toes. We'll see! Jack and Ben were born on our 2nd wedding anniversary, which also happens to be my good friend's birthday as well as my husband's uncle's birthday. Seems that we don't plan these things very well.

One day at a time!

I'm actually doing pretty well, as far as the final days of a pregnancy goes. I haven't had a ton of sciatic or hip pain in the past three days, which is a pure miracle, compared to the past few weeks. I had a little bit of energy to do some cleaning around the house this morning, but I stopped before I knew it was too much. I do get tired quickly and I don't even try and bend down anymore - it's just not worth the effort. Baby Girl is pretty cramped in there and lets me know how tight things are pretty frequently. Everyone is still maintaining status quo, hoping that even if the baby does give me signs that she's ready for her debut, we would all have enough time to get the boys to Nana's house and get me to the hospital. Bags are packed, plans are set and we're all just waiting to see if she'll show signs of being sick of her dark surroundings. I haven't noticed anything too major yet, so I'm hoping that means she'll be comfy in there for a bit longer...

or at least until AFTER Sunday night :)


Waiting on the Lord

At 38 weeks and 4 days pregnant, I am struck by an odd feeling. A feeling I haven't had in... well, I can't even remember. It's a strange feeling. One that I'm not entirely comfortable with. And I have no idea what to do.

I can't think of anything that needs to be done.

You laugh, I'm sure. But this is really odd for a former teacher, mother of twins and pregnant mommy!

For the past few months - since the day we found out we were pregnant - there has been a HUGE list of things to do. To prepare for. Organize the house, get ready for the baby, gather materials, brush up on information, buy/make birthday/wedding/baby shower presents through the month of June, the list has literally never ended. But trust me, I've really gotten a LOT done. My apartment has NEVER been as organized as it is in this moment. That was probably due to the fact that we found out we were pregnant on the day we moved in and I had absolutely NO energy to devote to organizing our new space, but even still, the fact that things are pretty organized is impressive.

Okay, now that I'm thinking of it, there are things I could do. Clean off my kitchen countertops. Scrub the toilet (because you know, you can never do that enough.) Back up the files from my harddrive onto my external drive. But instead, I'd rather think about everything being done. This is also not taking into account the fact that my husband has been the one cleaning and doing dishes; I am only trying to do the minimal lately since my energy level is so low after care for two toddlers during the day. Trust me. There are things I could do. I'm just choosing not to :)

My bags are packed. A bag is packed for my boys to stay with Nana and Papa when the baby arrives. Our plan is set in place and everyone knows what's 'supposed' to happen in case of a, b, or c. The baby's room is finished and her dressers are full. The boys' Easter baskets are stuffed, their outfits purchased and simple meals are planned for the next few weeks. Now, all I have to do is wait.

I've never been particularly good at waiting. I am a "dooer." A worker. I enjoy getting things done and have always taken pride in my work. Even if it's folding laundry, I get an immense feeling of satisfaction knowing it was completed successfully. And I joke with my husband that I used to consider myself a patient person... until I had kids. Then I found out I was really only patient with OTHER people's kids. HA!

Waiting is a difficult place to be. I remember wondering if I would ever get married. At the ripe old age of 24, I felt like I was destined to be an old spinster. I mean, really, most of my friends were married or at least had a steady boyfriend then. I had neither! Is it me or is this feeling exaggerated in Christian circles? Looking back, I am sooo grateful for that period of waiting because it helped get me ready for what was to come. I think I even appreciated it more because I didn't get it right when I wanted it. But in the moment, the waiting was so difficult.

That's where I am right now. I'm taking comfort in a verse that brought me peace when I was waiting for my husband to find me.

"Wait on the Lord; be strong and take heart, and wait on the Lord." Psalm 27:14

I'm humbled that the Psalmist thought this idea important enough for him to mention it twice. Oh, how soon we forget. God is in control. He is strategically putting pieces in the correct order. Waiting for the perfect time. So that in the end, we will be richly blessed.

There are parts of me that feel ready. But the bigger part of me is not. I am confident that the Lord wants to use how many more days we might have until our new little one arrives to prepare my heart, my family and my home to accept this new gift.

So I guess I DO have something to do: be strong, take heart and wait on the Lord!

**I've been blogging namely to my family blog lately because I didn't think you were all interested in hearing every little thought that pops into this pregnant lady's head. If you're interested, you're welcome to view my thoughts there: http://andymindysauer.blogspot.com. Thanks!


19 Days and Counting

Nursery is pretty much ready.
Hospital bag is pretty much packed.
House is pretty much ready for our baby girl.
And yet, I don't know that it's fully hit us that we'll be having another baby in less than three weeks. Nineteen days or less, actually.
The other night, I was browsing online for information about how much our little one is growing at 37 weeks. They tell me she's full-term and full developed. Now, she's just putting on weight. That my uterus may start to drop in the next few days/weeks and since this isn't my first pregnancy, there's a good chance she'll come early. The site suggested packing your hospital bag and making sure you were preregistered at the hospital.
Say what?
Why did no one tell me about preregistering? Or at least remind me?
It hasn't even been three years since our boys were born and already, I've forgotten relatively important information! So after yesterday morning, I can now add and check off "Finished preregistering at the hospital" from my list.
As good as it feels to get this stuff done, realizations like the one I had last night about preregistering make me nervous about what else I might be forgetting. If I forget to bring something to the hospital with me, not a big deal. Andy or my mom can always get it. But what if I forget something big, like what the heck I'm supposed to do!
Going through our little one's (very very pink) laundry, I'm struck by how small everything is. How am I supposed to hold a newborn again? How are you supposed to change those diapers when they are just so incredibly small? Will she latch on? What if I don't eat/drink/sleep enough and my milk doesn't come in when she needs it most? What if...? What if...?
Gosh, I sound like a first-time parent, don't I? I'm not, but I kinda feel like I am. These are obviously silly things to think about much less worry about. And I would be lying if I said these questions fill up my mind all day long. They honestly don't. Just in those few quiet moments of the day when I think about bringing our little one home. Into our home. Our lives. And I just wonder how it will go. Our family will be forever changed.
One thing I'm confident of, though. Well, two things actually. We are not the first ones to go through this. And second, we WILL emerge triumphant (albeit, not without our own little struggles, stories and learning experiences throughout the way.)
One step at a time, right?


Doing What I Know

Time is ticking away. I just can't believe we'll have our little one on this side of the womb in about three weeks. Or less.
Baby belly at 36 weeks, 5 days (taken March 11th)
Our Baby Girl at 36 weeks in 4D. Isn't technology amazing?
Can I tell you what I've been up to? Well, you know, other than growing another human while also caring for two active toddlers? Going to weekly OB appointments and trying to maintain my house?

I've purchased and made ALL birthday gifts, baby shower gifts, bridal shower gifts through the month of June. And a few for July. For someone who enjoy putting gifts together by hand, this is quite an accomplishment. My cousin and my brother are getting married. Two of Andy's cousins are pregnant with their first child, as well as two of my friends. There's just too many good things going on to use the excuse, "Oh, I couldn't do what I normally do for you. This is just a busy season for me." It feels really good.

We're also almost done with our Things to Do Before Baby Arrives List. We've put the room table, washed the clothes we were so generously given and have diapers waiting for her arrival. We made headboards for the boys' room (well, more like 'bed bumpers' - I'll post a picture soon!) and hung up some more decorations on their wall. We utilized a wardrobe in our bedroom to put much of the clutter in that was lining our floor. And I did a huuuuge big sweep of the boys' toys and our stuff in the basement to give away at our last MOPS meeting. All in an attempt to be ready for our little one. In many ways, I feel like our house is finally feeling like our home. We're finally getting it to where we've wanted it to be.

I was telling some of my friends at playgroup how much I was working to finish before our little one arrived, and they just laughed. "You're going to need some downtime," they told me. "You're going to wish you had an excuse to get to the store to buy a birthday present." I suppose they're right. But here's where our thinking differs. I had twins.

When the boys were born, I didn't get a break. Oh, I had help. I don't know how I would have gotten through those first ten weeks without the support of my mom and my husband. And a great many people that made us meals. But namely, I'm the mommy. And the ultimate responsibility fell on me. I had to feed them, burp, clean, then pump. If I had extra time in the day, I would take a nap. Or perhaps I would make myself something to eat and then take a nap. If I had a whole hour, I might have been able to add a SHOWER to that list. Now THAT was luxury. I was working to care for two newborns at once. You fed one, fed the other, changed one, changed the other. And after I got them both to sleep, I'd set my alarm to do it all over again in a half hour.

So when people say, "One newborn is going to be a breeze for you!" they may be right. But I honestly don't know. I only know what it's like to care for two at once and let me tell you, that's no joke. I can only do what I know. And for right now, that means doing everything I can to clear my schedule so I can exclusively care for my little one. And my two toddlers. And my husband. And my house. And myself, of course.

With everything that's been done, there's only ONE thing left to do. And it's driving my mom CRAZY that I haven't done it yet. Pack my hospital bag.

I'll get right on that.


Less Than One Month

It's happened every week since we found out we were pregnant. I get dreamy, thoughtful, grateful and extremely humble.

Calculations tell us that the baby ages another week on Wednesdays, according to my menstral cycle. So on Tuesday nights, I lay awake in bed, thinking about the baby and how she will age another week the very next day. Eight weeks becomes nine weeks, eleven weeks becomes twelve weeks. Sometimes, 40 weeks feels like forever. Especially when we were only six weeks along, I was sick as a dog and we couldn't say why. But now at the cusp of 36 weeks, 40 weeks just doesn't seem long enough.

With the boys, each week was a blessing. We had no idea how long my body would be able to rent space for two little ones, so my doctor was extra cautious. He took me out of the classroom by 20 weeks and I had the rest of the time to... well, rest. I didn't have any other kids and my husband still went to work every day, so it was just me and the boys. In utero. Eating, sleeping, and growing. I remember hoping they stayed inside until I had my next doctor's appointment. And then I'd start looking forward to other growth milestones... 24 weeks... 30 weeks... 34 weeks... 37 weeks. Each time, I'd be grateful they were still cooking inside and wondered how much longer I could handle my new tenants. They were born at 38 weeks. And don't you know, I had reached each of the milestones I was hoping for! (I even made it to the month of May, which I was really hoping to do!) We didn't spend any time in the NICU and I got to take them home just three days after my OB snatched them out from inside of me. That was God's mercy, for sure. It's not uncommon for many mothers of multiples to have to evict their little ones from utero much sooner for many different reasons out of their control. I've often thought it fitting that the Lord would use your child's birth as the very first time you realized how little control you really had over that little one! 

Tomorrow, we will be 36 weeks along. My computer tells me that in four days, the baby will be considered full-term. How can that even be possible? Didn't we just find out we were pregnant? This pregnancy has been so different than how it was with the boys. I was sick this time around and have had minimal sonograms and appointments for my "normal pregnancy" versus the High Risk pregnancy with the boys. I feel like the baby is breech because of how she moves, whereas the boys were always head-down and constantly getting at my ribs. There's only one baby in there and she has sooo much more room to move around than the boys ever did! And perhaps the biggest factor: I have two other toddlers. I'm not reading books about breast-feeding or taking classes at the hospital. I'm researching opinions on potty training, strong-willed children and introducing a new sibling to the family! My days are filled with paint, PlayDoh and playdates. Sooo different than the first time around.

So as I lay in bed tonight, my mind wanders to the next milestone: 36 weeks. Woah. She'll be here in less.than.one.month. I'd love to make it to the month of April (our due date is April 5th) but of course, my body wouldn't mind if she wanted to come sooner! We've come so far in a relatively short amount of time. We'll get to meet our little one very soon and I'll forget what life was like before she joined our family.

In less than one month.