I had another OB appointment this week and all is looking well! I hadn’t really asked anything about the birth up until this point, so I figured I should ask if my OB was good with my hopes for the birth.
My biggest hopes: that I could birth in whatever position felt right to me (I usually birth on hands and knees), that I could move around a lot in labor if things were going well (I prefer to be on the ball or on my hands and knees when I’m having contractions), that the girls could be at the birth (this was their biggest request from when we found out I was expecting!), and whether we could do delayed cord clamping.
I was so thrilled to hear that she was super happy to accommodate all of my requests (provided both baby and I are doing well) and I’m hopeful to have another non-medicated, natural, really positive birth experience like I had with all three so far!
That said, I always go into birth with an open mind knowing that things can change and I will freely chuck all of my hopes and plans if medical intervention is necessary. But it feels good to know that my doctor is very much on board with my hopes for the birth.
I started to feel more pregnant this week. 😉 While I’m still feeling so good overall, I’m definitely noticing that I’m walking slower, waddling more, getting more clumsy, needing to take a lot more breaks, experiencing more swelling and heartburn (though lots of water and being super careful with my diet is still making such a big difference there!), and just generally experiencing more of the usual aches and pains involved with getting nearer to the end of pregnancy.
I’m nowhere near the “l’m miserable and desperately need to get this baby out!” stage (though that stage is probably coming!!), yet… and considering I still have quite a few more words to write on my manuscript rough draft and tasks to accomplish and to do’s to tie up in the next 6 weeks, I’m grateful that I likely have quite a bit more time until baby gets here (I usually go late).
This week, I was all about the cheese and beef. Gratefully, those are two things that don’t give me heartburn!
Weight gain: 24 lbs.
We spent Wednesday night at the Gaylord Opryland Indoor Waterpark with our youth group (Jesse and I both co-lead a small group in our church’s youth group). Jesse had fun doing the FlowRider and a number of the water slides.
I could only do the lazy river, but I still had so much fun watching my girls have a blast!
These girls bring so much joy to my life!
And then I spent Friday-Sunday at a retreat center in TN with around 130 other women who are part of our church’s Discipleship Intensive program. (This is my 4th year to be involved in this program. It’s such an honor to get to co-lead and walk with a small group of women through this!)
My Say Yes Season
“Say Yes!” This has been one of my life themes the past 8 months.
On the macro level, I’ve said yes to getting licensed as a foster mama, said yes to a 3-book deal, said yes to more speaking and travel, said yes to co-leading another small group for Year 1 of our church’s Discipleship Intensive program, said yes to being a youth group leader, and said yes to opening our home every opportunity we’ve had.
On the micro level, I’ve been saying yes to opportunities to hang out and do more fun things with the kids and Jesse — like saying yes this week to putting on a bathing suit at 32 weeks pregnant and laughing and waddling around an indoor waterpark with Jesse & Kaitlynn for our youth group’s indoor waterpark night or spending two nights sleeping on a cot in the tiny kitchen area in the small room that I shared with three other women at the retreat center this weekend.
In all of my other pregnancies, I stayed home a LOT. Yes, I had younger kids so it was harder to get out. But I also stayed home because it was uncomfortable to get out — you never know when heartburn or nausea is going to hit, you’re often dog tired, and walking and standing can be difficult in the last few months of pregnancy.
This time around, I committed from the get go that I would get up, exercise, shower, and get dressed every day — no matter how I felt. Except for a few rare days, I have kept that commitment. And I truly believe it has made such a difference for me. After all, it’s much easier to say yes to fun and adventure and going places when you’re dressed and ready for the day! 😉
I look back on the last 8 months and see how this commitment to “Say Yes!” has brought so many unexpected blessings and people and relationships and opportunities into my life. And I have a whole catalog of memories, funny stories, and life-changing experiences I would have missed out on had a stayed home and played it safe.
I’ve also gotten to see God show up in powerful ways and give me energy when I felt weary and I get to see Him multiply my time and strength on an almost daily basis. It has been stretching in the most beautiful of ways!
Important note: While this is something that’s been simmering on my heart to share for the past few months, please note that this is my season of life that I am in right now. This is not to make anyone who is in a season of quiet feel guilty nor is it something I’m advocating for everyone. It is just where God has ME right now.
And my season of life will probably look a lot different come April/May when our baby arrives. Also, in the midst of this Say Yes season, I’ve made sure to have daily downtime (I take a nap almost every day + aim for 7-8 hours of sleep at night.) and weekly Sabbath (I take Sundays off.) There is no way I could go at the pace I do without these regular rhythms of rest.