Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Baby 3 Pregnancy Journal: Week 36!

 Note: I'm publishing this a week late. I'm currently 37 weeks along. :)

This baby deep inside me, ever so small, is a child of God. A child that God game to me to take care of whether for a day or for years. That care began at conception. Whether he or she lives or dies each day I am with him or her is a gift and has purpose with eternal consequences. My baby is now a part of my life, my testimony. -Brenda Rodgers, "New Rules for Announcing a Pregnancy"

How Far Along? 36 weeks!

Most of the baby's systems (from circulatory to musculoskeletal) are just about equipped for life on the outside. Though the digestive system is ready to roll, too, it hasn't really gotten a work out yet." -What to Expect When You're Expecting, 4th ed. 

Baby Size? 

Weighing about 6 pounds and measuring around 20 inches tall. -What To Expect When You're Expecting, 4th ed. 

We'll have a final ultrasound at 37 weeks to look at his size. I'm not too reliant on this measurement as it's just an estimation and known to be wrong. (Annelise was estimated to be an entire pound bigger than she actually was!). At this point, we at least know that the baby is likely not going to be "too big." The OB is estimating him to be in the 30s%, which is considered healthy but small. (Annelise was healthy, but small at birth). Neither one of us is concerned and acknowledge that I simply have small babies (good for delivery by my small frame! haha). 

Gender? It's a BOY! Huxley Nathaniel R., I am so very, very excited to meet him soon!

Belly? Seriously, how much bigger can this belly get?! 

(Social etiquette #1- Making comments about someone's face shape, cheeks or size is highly inappropriate, especially during pregnancy. Regardless of relationship (acquaintance, friend, or family), keep all comments to "you look beautiful" or say nothing at all. 

Social etiquette #2- I'm not self-conscious of belly size. However, I do feel it very rude to comment or worse share with others regarding a woman's pregnancy size. Again, just say she looks beautiful or say nothing at all. Certainly never share a photo with regard to a person's size. That's just odd and uncomfortable for everyone. ;) )

Sleep? Not so much. I toss and turn most nights. I frequently get pretty stiff or sore, and will get up just to move around a bit. 

Symptoms? My joints and back are revolting! Mostly, my back is aching from the all-forward carry of this baby plus the need to still lift and carry the other children and continue to work within our home. 

Clothing? The belly has exceeded the capacity of the bands on my pants! The pants still fit, but the bands are now too tight against my belly. If I'm going out, then I'll fold the band down a bit but then have to constantly pull up on my pants to keep them up. haha. If I'm at home for the day, then I've been wearing a single pair of yoga capri pants. It's not ideal, but with only three weeks left to go I'm going to make whatever is still available work. haha

Movement? We've been trying to go for a walk around the neighborhood whenever possible. I've resorted to waiting until David's available in the evenings to go for a walk so that I can avoid lifting and pushing the double stroller with the children. We don't get to go daily, but when we do it's so nice to be all together!

Baby Movement?
     I believe he may be the wiggliest one of all at this point! We're definitely at the point of deep breathing through some of his big movements. He still has some mighty powerful kicks and has a special way of finding the gap between my abs. haha 

Food Adversions? None. I love food...perhaps too much. haha

Food Cravings? Ah, too many desserts lately. yikes! We had Christmas last month and now birthday month, and so the yummy treats have been plentiful. 

What I Miss? A bit fewer aches and the ability to rest comfortably. That time will come soon enough though. 

What I'm Excited About? (I'm not sure when it happened but at some point this question was accidentally omitted and then the entire questionnaire copy and pasted without it!) 

      I'm so excited to simply meet him. I keep thinking on the possibilities for what he'll look like or what his personality will be like. It's interesting that when you have one child you can't imagine any other combination. Then, you have a second and she is completely different than your first. Then, another child poses potential for yet another combination of characteristics. They are each so unique and so very special. Will this new baby be like either of his siblings or completely different as well? It's absolutely thrilling to get to experience getting to know each of these individuals. I'm so very grateful to have the privilege of having all three of them!

What I'm Nervous About? 
     Believe it or not, all this time we've been anxious about a preemie situation. Now, we're beyond that point and concerned about another over-term situation. There's not much allowance in the medical OB realm for overterm babies. I'm afraid that if he doesn't come on his own and they won't induce with a VBAC, then we'll end up with a scheduled c-section. I'd much prefer a VBAC. Hopefully he'll decide to come on his own soon!

How Am I Preparing?
Adorable little puffy vest
 outfit is part of the priority list,
 right? ;)
      Some wonderful friends recently offered to watch the children for us as a trial run for when Huxley arrives. We've been getting together with them weekly so that the children can become more familiar with them, which has really been a big help. The children also getting to have some time with them without David and I around has been an even bigger help. I'm feeling so much better about they being comfortable and well taken care of while we're at the hospital greeting Mr. Huxley. I'm so grateful for this family who has so wonderfully heard our concerns about the children not being accustomed to outside care and has done so much to help them (and us) feel more comfortable by gathering frequently before the need arises. This has been my prayer throughout the pregnancy. This couple..they're amazing. 

     We've made it through peak season/Christmas, Tennyson's birthday celebration, and now I feel like I can move on to focusing on baby preparations. I mainly need to make sure we have my hospital bag packed, the children's away bag packed, and the house kept stocked and tidy. I have a list of other little tasks that also need accomplishing still (like finding my nursing cover, washing bottles and pacifiers, finding the bassinet portion to the pack n play bed etc). My sticky note reminders around the desk are lining up! hahaha

     We're still getting some meals prepared, but not near as many as I had hoped for originally. It's just challenging at times to find extra time to complete extra tasks. We'll at least have a few for when he arrives. We may still end up with a lot of cold cereal breakfasts and sandwich lunches though. haha. 

Other News/Thoughts? 
     At this point, we've once again achieved a "normal" baby and "normal" pregnancy. David and I are convinced that this outcome has nothing to do with interventions, but, instead eliminates our first experience as the standard. In other words, we no longer believe in such high risk status or need for interventions. The first pregnancy with numerous complications, preterm delivery, and growth restriction was, in our opinion, an anomaly. Without the need for extra appointments, interventions and worries our determination of this being the last baby has begun to sway. (I've always left the decision for starting or continuing our family up to David. It's very, very important to me for him as the father to want a child not just deal with it.) It seems as though we've become open to the idea of this baby being the last biological child or perhaps next to last. One thing we do know is a lengthier space between pregnancies & children would be desired. As much as I do enjoy aspects of the children being closely-spaced, there is a degree of greater difficulty in physically sustaining close pregnancies and parenting all little ones simultaneously (ie everyone requires very hands-on care and attention at the same time). We'll revisit the matter in a couple of years. I personally feel much more at peace with an option remaining open for either choice. (However, if this baby ends up being delivered via c-section (but hopefully not!), then that will certainly influence our choice since it is putting my body through major surgery yet again.) 

4 more weeks to go until we meet Mr. Huxley! :)

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