Third baby is different.
You're not so obsessed with weekly updates on how big baby is compared to an obscure vegetable. You don't have to spend hours researching the best car seat, stroller, bottles, or myriad of other baby gadgets, and that also means you don't create an elaborate baby registry. You're time with your other two "babies" (who happen to be 3 and 4 years old now) fills your day as you cart them around to the beach, museums, parks, grocery stores, and Grammy's house, so you hardly have time to think about all the baby prep you should probably be doing.
So here we are at 37 weeks gestation (full term!), and I am finally writing down some thoughts about this pregnancy. With Grace, my first baby, I wrote weekly blurbs and posted them by trimester. I wasn't nearly as diligent in my second pregnancy with Madelyn, but I do think I wrote a few updates throughout the 9 months. But Baby Macey #3 has gotten the short end of the stick when it comes to recording the ups and downs, dreams and fears, and crazy moments of this pregnancy. I think that is just what comes of being my third rodeo.
The first people I told were actually my daughters, Grace and Madelyn. I went straight from the positive pregnancy test in the bathroom to the living room couch where I brought my girls close to me and told them, "Mommy has a baby in her tummy!" Grace's eyes got all big and she squealed with delight. I'm pretty sure Maddy was like ,"Cool," and then went back to playing. So when Andrew came home, I had to restrain Grace from screaming it as he ascended the stairs. He sat down and I gave her permission to tell him the news. He was so excited! And Grace continued to love telling everyone she met that Mommy was expecting a baby. The news got out quick (but I don't really believe in waiting for a later date to tell anyway).
First trimester was ROUGH. I was sick a lot, even more than my other two pregnancies. It felt different, so Andrew and I were sure we were pregnant with a baby boy. Surprise, surprise, around week 16 we went to a gender reveal ultrasound and found out that baby would be another girl! We were honestly shocked. But Grace and Madelyn are thrilled to welcome a little sister to the family. They touch my belly daily and tell the baby how much they already love her. It is really tender.
Baby is a wiggly worm. When she is awake, I sometimes rub some peppermint oil on my tummy (to help with heartburn) and she will go crazy! It's like she is on a roller coaster in my belly. Grace has been able to see and feel her move a few times, and her eyes get all big as she realizes that Mommy really does have a baby in her tummy! I think it has helped make it even more real for her.
Unmedicated Labor Prep
So another way this pregnancy has been different has been in my preparation for actual delivery. I may not have spent hours researching baby products, but I have definitely spent even more hours researching and reading about natural birth.
I feel so empowered and knowledgeable. I took an online class (its called Pain Free Birth), which happened to be gears towards Christians. It was really cool to learn about how women's bodies work in pregnancy and labor to help get out babies earthbound, and it was even more meaningful to see all of that through the lens of God's perfect creation and plan for us. I have also learned a ton about different birth options, and I even had a few weeks where I looked seriously into home births with a midwife (unfortunately, it wasn't a good fit for us this pregnancy for a few reasons, but if we get pregnant again Andrew and I would highly consider it). I've learned about popular hospital policies, informed consent, vaccines, breathing and relaxation techniques, birthing positions, the changes in my body during each stage of labor, and so much more. Am I still nervous about facing an unmedicated birth? Yep. But am I also full of faith and excitement and power from all the things I have learned in the past few months. HECK YES!
I asked some of my family members to pray and fast for my upcoming labor and delivery: that my and my baby's bodies would work properly, that the medical staff could be supportive and helpful, that my birth team could feel guided as they help me navigate through the experience. My mom commented, "You seem more anxious about this birth. You have never asked me to fast for your birth before." I thought about it and replied, "I'm not more anxious. I think I am more aware of how much I need heaven's help in this process. In my studying, I know there is a point in labor close to when baby will be born where it will be really intense. I might feel like I want to give up or that I can't do it. I know that that is the moment where I need to give it all to Heavenly Father and rely on Him to pull me through. I can only do so much to prepare, but in the end I will need to put it all in His hands. That is a powerful and humbling thought. So this pregnancy I am trying to be more prayerful and in tune with the Spirit's guidance as I prepare for labor."
So here I am at 37 weeks. I had barely started packing my hospital bag, but today I felt some contractions and it pushed my butt in gear. I spent the whole day prepping freezer meals and throwing needed supplies for the hospital into a suitcase. I still have a ton I could do (and should do) before baby arrives, but honestly she can come any time and I'd be fine.
Although, Andrew and I are supposed to go the the Imagine Dragons concert next week, and a baby coming before that would definitely create a snag in that plan. haha.
Andrew and Maichael
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