Thursday, April 21, 2011

Our Sweet Baby Girl

Avery Lynn
born Thursday, April 7, 2011 at 10:12am
7 pounds, 8 ounces - 21 inches long

Perfect in every way!

There are so many things I want to write about her, but that will have to wait for another time.  The three year old just left for the zoo with his Daddy and Avery is/was asleep in her bed, so I must be wise and use this time to do things for myself.  Like eating...and showering.  Aah, the glamorous life of a mom with a newborn!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ten and counting

(This one is actually from today!)

(image from here)
I'm 10 days from my due date today.  That can be counted on just two hands.  I'm not excited or anything...yeah right!  I'm still being realistic though, and I'm not I saying that I can guarantee she will be here in that amount of time.  I realize it could be longer by a few days, but I'm hopeful it will not be.  Ten.  T-E-N.  TEN!!  That is all.



I'm 38 weeks today, which has me feeling...I'm not really sure.  It's been a long 38 weeks, yet it's also flown by so quickly.  I have friends who have never known pregnancy to last this long. I have friends who have gone much longer than this.  I have people who check in on me, people who (jokingly) request that I avoid certain dates to give birth, and people who are just as excited and antsy as we are.  They're wondering the same today the day?  It's the number one question on my mind at all times.  Some days, it consumes me.  (Like...the last few days!)

In just a matter of time, I'll finally know what this little one looks like.  Blonde hair?  Brown hair?  What color of eyes?  In our situation, there are so many unknowns that the suspense is about to send me over the edge!  I can't begin to guess about her features, her length, or even her size.  All I can do is wait.

A good friend recently reminded me that my life will not ever be as it is right nowever enjoy this time.  It's great advice and I'm trying to do just that.  To enjoy these last few days/weeks as they are, taking every day as God has chosen to give it to me.

Gonna Miss This

I've written a few posts on my personal blog lately and wanted to share them here to continue documenting our embryo adoption journey...ALL aspects of it.

MONDAY, MARCH 21, 2011

I'm waiting.  I'm anxious.  I'm impatient.  And I'm content.  Wait...what?!  Content?  I don't typically "wait" well for things (hence, the anxiousness and impatience), so I find it odd to look inside myself and find contentment too.   I'm on the verge of complete fulfillment of a dream I have literally had since I was a little girl.  It's so close, I can almost touch it.  Any day now, it could be 100% fulfilled.  I just don't know when that day might be.  (According to my pregnancy ticker, it's only 19 days away!)

So why am I content?  I'm just trying to slow myself down and remember to enjoy this time I still have.  On the outside, it's just our family of 3.  Me and my boy.  A mother of one.  On the inside, it's just her and me - and no one else.  Don't get me wrong, it's not that I don't want to share her or that I'm just SO physically comfortable these days that I don't want her to come out.  That's certainly not the case at all!  It's just knowing that after she's born, so many things will be different.

My boy won't have the attention he used to.  My love, hugs, kisses, arms, and lap will have to be shared.  A bit of freedom that I have gained with a 3 year old will be lost as we re-enter the infant stage.

I'll never again feel her move inside of me.  I'll never feel her stretch from head to toe and be able to complain at her that it hurts, insisting there's just NOT ENOUGH ROOM to do that.  She won't be in there to flip-flop around or to practice kickboxing as I'm trying to fall asleep at night.  I won't be the only one to feel her I do right now!

However, I will be able to introduce her to so many people who have been praying for her.  I will be able to gaze into her eyes and feel her in my arms as I take in her sweet smells, knowing that because of Him and His faithfulness, my body carried her safely through a full-term pregnancy and brought her into this world.  I'll be able to grant her big brother's current request to hold "baby sister" and allow him to give her kisses.  

song came to mind as I was thinking about all of this.  As a mom, it's always "gotten me", bringing me to tears wherever I am as I realize that there are times I DO wish certain days/ages/phases would pass.  But Trace Adkins is right -- I AM going to miss this.  All of it.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

An Update & Spiritual Encouragement for Birth

It appears that I often think about writing here the day before I have a doctor appointment!  As I mentioned last time, I was about to have another ultrasound -- at 32 weeks, our baby girl weighed 4 pounds exactly.  I can't even imagine what she'll weigh tomorrow at my 36 week appointment tomorrow, but I'm excited to see her!  It'll (likely) be the last time we see her until she's born...SO exciting!!  It occurred to me this morning that yesterday was March 9th...which means I officially can say I have less than a month to go...well...less than a month until my due date (4/9), at least!  I can't believe she'll be here and in my arms in nearly 4 weeks!  It felt like getting here took SO long and now I'm almost a little sad to see that our journey is almost over -- it's a bittersweet feeling, no doubt.

Anyway...the real reason I came here to write today was to share this link/blog with anyone who may be preparing to give birth like I am.  I ran across it a while back and thought it was a really great tool to take with me to the hospital.  I don't have the book she mentions, but I'll read through the rest of it (as she suggests) before hand -- AND it will be good to have on hand during the "tough moments" when I need some spiritual encouragement.  I hope it touches you like it touched me!

Scriptural Encouragement for Preparing & Giving Birth

Although my newest addition is already five months old, I know there are plenty of new babies in the oven ready to be welcomed into the world. I wanted to share the passages of Scripture, quotes and encouragement that sustained me through my natural delivery. It is not an easy task to give birth to a child, nor is it something we can do on our own strength. I believe the Word supplies us with much needed sustaining grace to enable a mother to proceed through labor and delivery. My encouragement for all you mom-to-be’s is to take a few hours or a day off in preparation for your new arrival to prepare your heart for labor. I have done this prior to both my deliveries and it has been amazingly beneficial. Just go to a coffee shop, sit by a river, lake or stream, and meditate upon the Word. Write out your fears and pray through each one. Ask the Lord to prepare your heart. He is so faithful to do so! I pray these truths would be an encouragement and blessing to all you expectant mothers!

Preparing for Birth

I find more often than not, that many mothers experience fear about going through labor. We may fear the pain, or we may fear complications. It is extremely beneficial to mediate on these Scriptures to help conquer those fears. Truth be told, where fear exists there is more risk of complications. Fear tenses our bodies and makes it very difficult to relax…an important detail in allowing our baby to progress down the birth channel. I encourage you to take any fear directly to the Lord and cast it at His feet.
Philippians 4:6-7 – “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” (NLT)
2 Cor. 12:9 - “My grace is enough; it is all you need. My strength comes into its own in your weakness. I just let Christ take over! And so the weaker I get, the stronger I become!” (NLT)
Further meditation: 1 Peter 5:7Isaiah 26:3 as written below.
I found the NLT spoke to me powerfully about the reality of God’s grace. It is enough for me! Rather than worrying, reflect on all those things you are thankful for. He has blessed you with a child! A true gift from God! When we fully give up our own will and strength, that is when Christ’s grace and sustaining grace will truly be evident and powerfully effect us.
“Birth is God’s time. It can’t be rushed or programmed to suit anyone’s clock. It is a time to simply be there, respecting the woman’s space and the natural rhythms of her body. Think of how time ceases to have relevance when you are caught up in the presence of God worshipping Him or when you are in love and spending time with your beloved. Time flies by and you barely notice. Birth time is the timing of nature. Who knows when spring will come? Can a budding flower be found open? Yet in time, these things unfold. So does birth. I sometimes suggest to my clients that they visit the ocean and see the rhythm of the waves on the shore. That right there teaches you, deep within, so much about the patterns, rhythms and power of labor.” – Julie Bell
Reflect upon the blessings of children!
Psalms 127:3 – “Children are a blessing from the Lord; the fruit of the womb a reward.” Don’t fret over the changes, the upcoming sacrifices, but rather rejoice in the gift and the Giver!
Deut. 28:4 – “Blessed shall be the offspring of your body and the produce of your ground and the offspring of your beasts, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock.”
Reflect upon His beautiful workmanship!
Psalms 139:13-14 “You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.”

Giving Birth

Isaiah 26:3 – “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you: because he trusts in you.” Keep your mind on Jesus and the peace that passes all understanding will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus (Phil 4:7). Focus your mind during your labor…do not let it stray to focus on the pain and process, but rather on Jesus and His sustaining grace. This verse really spoke to me while preparing for my birth. I memorized it and quoted it to myself throughout the most challenging moments of my delivery. It was such a blessing.
1 Peter 5:7 – “Cast all your cares upon Him, for He cares for you.”
Faith and Perseverance
Hebrews 11:1 “Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen, it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.”
Proverbs 3:34 “The Lord mocks the mockers but is gracious to the humble.” The Lord blesses those who put their trust in Him, not depending upon their own strength, but humbly acknowledging their Source!
Hebrews 10:35-36 - “So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! [A baby!] Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that He has promised.” (NLT)
I am walking in God’s will when I demonstrate patience! It brings great reward! My little one is coming!
James 1:3-4 “For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.” (NLT)
This birth is one means of God working to grow me in maturity and endurance. I will be stronger in my faith if I rely completely upon Him to accomplish His good work.
Psalm 40:1 – “I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and He turned to me and heard my cry.”
Psalm 119:165 - “Those who love Your law have great peace and do not stumble.” Store up the truth!
This final poem was a blessing to read as I prepared and welcomed my new little one!
Gift from God
I give thanks to You alone
Who sits on the throne
To loan me this precious gift
And to call it my own.
May I always see, Lord
In every waking hour,
Your majesty and grace
In this delicate flower.
Help me, O God,
To guide and preserve,
This wonderful blessing
to love and to serve.
-Doran Richards
For further encouragement, I strongly recommend the Christian Childbirth Handbook. It was a huge blessing to me! The poem and quote above by Julie Bell were found originally in this book.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

(Almost) 30 weeks

It's been a while since I've updated this blog, but there hasn't really been news to post.  It's SO hard to believe I'll be 30 weeks on Saturday.  In my first trimester (and even into my second), I was feeling so sick that I was SURE it would take forever to get into my third trimester.  Now I'm there, and I feel like 10 weeks just isn't enough time.  I have a doctor's appointment tomorrow with another ultrasound to measure our baby girl.  Last time, she was 2 pounds, 8 ounces, so I'm excited to see how much she has grown in just three weeks!  Things are going well but I think I've started to feel the third trimester slump that you hear about.  I went through a couple weeks where I had a few days in a row that I'd feel tired, followed by a few days that I felt my energy again.  Lately, however, those days of energy have been non-existent.  (I'm sure our 3 year old running around is not influencing that AT ALL!)

As far as preparations go, her room is painted and the furniture is set up and in place.  The bedding is here and I have "hand-me-down" clothes sorted, but nothing is washed.  I have a plan for what's going up on the walls, but it requires some assistance from my husband so I'm stuck playing the waiting game until the weekend.  I was feeling a bit overwhelmed by all that needs to be done before she arrives, so I started a "to do" list and I feel much better.  Even if everything doesn't get checked off before she's born, it still makes me feel better to know it won't be forgotten!

Much excitement going on around here as our time gets closer and closer.  10 weeks may seem like a long time, but for me...not so much.  OHMY, OHMY, OHMY!!!  I can hardly wait to see what our little one looks like...and I'm wishing we'd paid for one of those 3D ultrasounds to get a sneak peak.  I guess *some* surprises aren't so bad.  :)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

18 Weeks and Counting...

As of today, I'm officially 18 weeks along!  I had an ultrasound on Thursday, where we found out there will be lots of pink in our future...IT'S A GIRL!

Due to the fact that she is not genetically related to either my husband or I, my doctor sent me for a comprehensive ultrasound.  The technician felt it was a bit early to be doing one, (she prefers at least 20 weeks) but she tried her best.  I have to go back in 4 weeks to finish it up, partially because the baby would not flip over so she could complete her assessment, but also because certain things (like her heart) are just not big enough yet for them to truly evaluate it.  (I must say, I'm not upset that I get to spend another half hour of my life looking at the little princess growing inside of me!)

God, You are so amazing.