5 weeks to go…

I suppose there’s been a countdown clock going for a while, but today I hear it ticking pretty loudly. 5 weeks to go… 35 days… 16 more work days in my office… holy cow.  It’s like you spend your whole pregnancy thinking this is taking forever – and then all the sudden it’s almost over and the overwhelming feeling of all that’s left to do engulfs you. I’m there.

As I write this I’m hanging out in a hospital waiting room as my husband is in surgery to repair a hernia (a new occupational hazard, I suppose). And so hopefully our household has no need for heavy lifting for a while… yeah, there’s that.

Sometimes life is so busy that you don’t take the time to sit back and think about the enormity of certain situations or bask in the joy of others. And so while I can get caught up in the fact that the nursery’s not finished and all the Christmas shopping I’ve got to do… and ponder how in the heck I’ll be able to wrap presents on the floor in my current state of largeness… what I forget to focus on is how my whole life is about to change in 5 short weeks. In 5 weeks, I’ll have a daughter, Blake will get his daddy’s little girl and Brogan and Beckett will have a little sister. We’ll go back through sleep deprivation, our schedule will get thrown out the window and we’ll be switching from man to man coverage to zone (as my aunt who has three kids pointed out to me this weekend). But all those things will pale in comparison to the amount love and contentment we’ll feel knowing our family is complete. It’s pretty overwhelming when I really think about it.

With just weeks left to go, I also find myself feeling humbled by all of our blessings. Pregnancies don’t always go perfectly, and there are hundreds of far worse reasons I could be sitting in a hospital waiting for my husband to get out of surgery. But I’m thankful that we’ve had a healthy complication-free pregnancy, and that this is a simple outpatient procedure. I’m grateful that my boys are happy and healthy… and that we are surrounded by supportive friends and family who have already started to go out of their way to help us out. And so despite all of the chaos in our lives, the things that really matter are all good.

So I’ll keep reminding myself of these things over the next few weeks when I wonder how it is all going to get done… or when I complain about my lack of mobility or how uncomfortable it is to sleep. And regardless of how prepared we are, come December 17th (and hopefully not sooner!) we’ll get to meet Miss Berkley… and we are so, so excited!

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The Perks of Being Pregnant

I’m going to just go ahead and say it – I like being pregnant. It agrees with me. I don’t get too sick, or too tired, or too moody. If you’re reading this and you’re a miserable pregnant person – I’m sorry. Don’t hate me.

To elaborate further, there are certain things about being pregnant that I love… parts I wish I could take with me post-pregnancy. Here goes…

The ability to rock a fat stomach. Oh yes, when you’re pregnant, the pooch becomes an accessory! You can flaunt it, accentuate it, dress it up and certainly don’t have to worry about covering it up. Since after my last two pregnancies, I spent a lot of time trying to hide the mommy-belly that followed, it has been liberating (to say the least) to wear tight clothes proudly!

The desire to want to clean. all. the. time.  The theoretical me is really organized and keeps a really clean house. The real me sucks at these two things. The pregnant me, however, has found some deep, deep motivation to constantly pick up and put (and keep) my house in order. My husband wishes this part would stay around too. I can’t say I blame him.

The maternity pants. When I was pregnant the first time, I remember clearly being in a Motherhood Maternity dressing room, trying on maternity clothes and being a little depressed at the thought of wearing them. And also depressed at the thought that I would get big enough to fit in them. Wow – what a wake up call. I put it off as long as I could, but when I finally retired the rubber band that was holding the buttons on my normal pants together and surrendered to the maternity pants, I could not believe I had waited so long.  The maternity pants I’m referring to are the over-the-belly variety. Seriously one of the best articles of clothing ever invented. You spend most of your life trying to fit your stomach in pants that are too tight, and then all of the sudden you get some with an elastic stomach and it is just awesome. This will be one of the saddest things to retire after this baby is born… if I retire them. It may be handy to keep a pair for Thanksgiving. Hmmmm.

The boobs. Really, do I need to explain this one any further? Just awesome!

Eating for two. I would consider myself a pretty healthy eater (most of the time). But the quantity of food I consume is just stupid some times. My co-workers accuse me of the hollow-leg syndrome. Seriously, I don’t know where I put it. That’s the non-pregnant me. The pregnant me does the same, but in an unashamed and entitled sort of way. Don’t look at me crazy for eating my entire 2-pound Chipotle bowl – I’m eating for two!

Getting the say in the food selection (and eating whenever I want). There is something about being pregnant that people automatically defer to you for what to eat. “Where do you want to eat?” I ask. “Wherever you want, you’re the pregnant one,” they say. “Do you mind if I reschedule our meeting, it’s right in the middle of my lunch,” I say. “Sure thing! Would hate to keep the pregnant lady hungry!” they reply. Why, oh why, can’t the world appreciate the non-pregnant me’s need for food too?? Even if it’s fleeting, I will spend the next 5 months relishing in this one for sure!

I think there are more… but one of the downsides to pregnancy is “pregnancy brain” (a for-real condition) which has caused me to forget the rest of my list. Oh, and this condition also causes typos. So any typo you see on my blog is directly attributable to this – even the posts prior to this pregnancy because pregnancy brain lasts until your kids are at least in elementary school, so it was probably left over from one of my prior pregnancies. But I digress.

One could say I’m in the naive stage – out of the first trimester funk – not too uncomfortable yet – sleeping most the night. And they are probably right. This, my friends is the blissful part of pregnancy. And sure, I miss sushi and beer. A lot. But since this is the last go-round for this pregnant gal, I am focusing on the perks and trying to appreciate them more than I did before. So bring it on heartburn and stretch marks and swollen ankles! Me and my big-boobed hungry self in the stretchy maternity pants – we’ve got this!

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The Truth about the Gender Question

Boy or Girl

One of the questions most asked of those who are expecting a child is “do you want a boy or a girl?” It’s an interesting question. You get to make a public declaration of your desire and then you get a 50/50 chance of either getting what you want… or not. And then when you already have two boys, the question morphs a little to “you want a girl this time, don’t you?” Now there is the PC answer (happy, healthy, etc.), and then sometimes there’s the real one. And by the way, who doesn’t want a happy and healthy child? As if having a preference on the sex indicates you’ve bypassed the ultimate desire of wellbeing… but I digress. I know no one means harm in the question, and by no means do I find it offensive, but it can be a little awkward. Because the truth is that yes, I want a girl. And I know there is a 50/50 chance I’ll be eating my words. But if I was writing up the “perfect” life for myself, this third child would be a girl. I mean, don’t most people want to get to experience what it’s like to raise both a boy and a girl? But the funny thing about writing out your “perfect” story – sometimes you get it wrong. Two and half years ago when I was pregnant with Beckett (and before I knew he was a he) I would have answered girl too. But if things had gone according to my plan, I wouldn’t have this precious little boy, or perhaps this opportunity to have a third child. So it’s a good thing, that despite all of my “planning”, it’s not my plan guiding my life. So I answer girl this time too, but there is an asterisk. I want a girl, but I know that a girl may not be in God’s plans for me. I may be meant to be the mom of three boys, and I am okay with that. In fact, I’m more than oaky with that – I will embrace that reality and never look back. But who knows, a girl could be in the plan too.

We find out what we’re having next Saturday, by the way.

Blake and I decided we had to know as early as possible with this pregnancy. There are countless opinions about discovering the gender – find out or wait until delivery… how early to find out… how to spread the news, etc. This will be our third time to find out via ultrasound. For me, being able to refer to the baby as a he or she, and with a name, has helped me to bond with the pregnancy (so we won’t be holding out on the name till the end either). This time there is a little more anxiety because we know it is our last time. I am truly just anxious to know what our reality is so that I can focus on being excited about it… versus getting wrapped up in my plan if that’s not what’s meant to be. We’re not planning anything fancy for the reveal – we’ll find out in the ultrasound room (with our boys), and after calling our parents it’ll be Facebook/blog official within an hour I’m sure. We aren’t real good at keeping these things a secret.

6 days to go… but who’s counting.

We’re Expecting… Again!

As if there wasn’t enough craziness going on in our lives right now, it’s about to get crazier! Yes, we decided to have another baby, and I’m happy to report that I’m 12 weeks along today. Baby #3 is due right before Christmas, and we couldn’t be more excited.

Those of you who have read some of my kid-related posts may think I’ve lost my mind. Well, perhaps. But I’ve always wanted to have a big family, so I have chosen to be blissfully ignorant where all the impending logistical challenges are concerned.  Yes, I will have 3 kids 4 years and under. Yes, I will continue to work full time. Yes, grocery shopping will be an even bigger pain in the butt than it is now. Yes, I’ll sleep less, have a messier house and spend a fortune for another couple years of diapers. But despite all the really good reasons not to, we decided that a big family is worth the sacrifice. And if we were going to do it, we decided the sooner the better. We were afraid that if things got “easier” (more sleeping, less diapers, etc.), that we may not want to go back to the life with a newborn/infant. But luckily, things are not yet easy, and so while we’re still in the trenches, we figure we might as well go back to battle.

We made the decision to have another baby before Blake planned his career change, but I have to say that it is going to make things a lot, lot easier. He’ll be home more and not too far away, which will be a significant improvement over his work situation the last two times. It also works out that he got a new truck a few months ago. A big truck. A truck that can easily fit 3 car seats in the back. Hello daddy chauffeur. I, on the other hand, will have to get a new vehicle. And eventually, we’ll need to get a bigger house. But you know what? That’s all okay by me.

I experienced two early miscarriages while trying to have this baby, and so as I enter my 2nd trimester we are counting our blessings. Those experiences have given me a newfound appreciation for the fact that it’s not always easy to conceive. It’s a perspective that I didn’t have after my first two easy pregnancies. But as I sit here today, I am more thankful and humbled than ever before that I am growing another little life.

So if you’ve wondered why I haven’t posted as much here lately, this would be the reason. It’s partly because I’ve been exhausted and just want to go to sleep after the boys go to bed… and partly because this is such a big thing going on that I felt a little unauthentic writing about my life and not including it. But after the miscarriages, I really felt like I should adhere to the “12-week rule”. But now that we’ve passed that milestone, let the pregnancy posts commence!

Well, here we go! A new chapter in our lives that promises to be an adventure. We’re excited and thankful and probably a little naive. But we’re on the way to being a family of 5, and I couldn’t be more happy about it!

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And I have to give credit for the photo idea to my husband… one of the many reasons why I love him.