Tuesday, July 23, 2013

My First Dream of You

Hello, my first born child.

It is currently 4:55 AM. I don't normally get up until 5:40ish, but today I was wide awake at 4:36. I had a dream about you and then I woke up and remembered almost every detail. I don't want to forget this dream, because it was so sweet (and so scary). So sit tight and let me tell you a little story...

In my dream you were born via water birth. (In real life, Daddy and I haven't decided on water birth or not, yet) I remember pushing and then all the sudden.... There you were! You were a boy, weighing 10 pounds, 1 ounce and 21 inches long. You were smiling and talking (though now I can't remember what you were telling me). Only I could understand you, but your Nonnie thought she could, too. Oh, she was there when you were born. I don't remember Daddy being there, but he probably was and I just forgot.

Anyways, I was standing up and walking around right after you came. We left our bathroom (where the pool had been set up) and walked out into the living room. But in my dream our living room at home turned into Oma & Opa's formal living room, and that's where everyone was waiting to meet you. Oma & Opa were there. Grandpa was there, making fun of my elementary school singing group, The Caroleers (who knows where that came from). A friend from elementary school was there, Amanda Todd, and a girl named Amanda Morris was there. I have no idea who Amanda Morris is, but I'm thinking it's probably Mommy's friend from work whose last name is Harris. Dream typo? I don't know. Those are the people whose names I remember writing down, but I know there were more. I think Carol was there and someone else, but I can't remember now. Everyone loved holding you and talking about how big you were. It began to occur to me... How did I get such a big baby out of me without any medications??

The whole time I remember bits and pieces of seeing our midwife clean up, make our bed, open the blinds, cook some type of herbal something-or-other for me to eat, and work silently in the background. I know this isn't an accurate portrayal of what our midwife will do in real life... But somewhere in my noggin that's what I imagined, I guess? I just remember trying to stay out of her way. Oh, and that when I saw her cooking, it wasn't in our kitchen, but in Grandpa & Nonnie's kitchen. It was there that I asked her about placenta encapsulation and if she offered that service. She told me to put the placenta in our deep freeze and we could send it within a week to her mentor to process.

So basically that's my dream. I can still see your big smiling face (which I know won't be the case when you're actually born). I can still hear your sweet little voice talking to me (which I definitely know won't be the case when you're actually born). I can still see the scale saying 10 lbs, 1 oz. (Dear God, I don't know if I'm ready for that to be the case when you're actually born).

I'm so happy I had this dream. However weird it may have been... I feel closer to you and feel your presence inside of me more than I did when I went to bed last night. So for that I'm thankful. I can't wait to meet you, little one... And find out just how big you are!

Love you so much,

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Week 6 Thoughts

I mean, nobody asked for my thoughts, but why not share them?

  • Chances are, if you plan something before 10 AM and expect me to be there... You had better be my work and paying my salary. Otherwise, I physically cannot get out of bed. 
  • Wonder how much flack I'll get for wanting to give birth naturally. Wonder how much it'll hurt my feelings to hear negativity. Wonder if I won't care at all. I wonder... 
  • I am so unbelievably, indescribably, out-of-control excited for this little blessing. Occasionally I have a complaint (or two or three or four) because pregnancy is NOT what I expected... But I could not feel more blessed or happy to be given this gift. 
  • Feeling blah all the time has made me appreciate just how little I feel sick the rest of the time (when I'm not pregnant). Now that I constantly feel gross, I have to remind myself, "you are NOT sick. You are pregnant. There's a difference. This is NORMAL." Because my tendency is to freak out, stay in bed all day resting, and not do any house work. (Okay, I probably just threw in that last part because I really don't want to do any house work)
  • My husband is Superman, I'm convinced. He buys me all the pineapple, thin bagels, and ice cream I want and never complains. He also has become very good at reading my pouts. All I have to do is pout his way and he knows exactly what it is I need (and then gets it without me even asking!). I think it's a magic trick, but I haven't figured out the secret yet. 
  • Current symptoms: interrupted sleep, exhaustion, frequent bathroom trips, reflux, mild heartburn, breast soreness/tenderness, mild cramping, minimal spotting, outrageous up/down emotions (including bursts of sobbing lasting 20 minutes to 2 hours), bloating, gas... POOR JOY TO BE AROUND, I tell ya. (More like poor Braylen)

Saturday, July 13, 2013

And Baby Makes Three!

Well, the cat's out of the bag... We're expecting our first child! We one hundred percent could not be more excited (or scared or anxious or overwhelmed). Just to recap, this is what's been going on before we made the big reveal:

On June 27th, I woke up like I've done on countless other mornings... with the intent to take a pregnancy test. I figured it would be negative and I'd slip back in to bed for a few more minutes. However, a part of me wondered... Will this one be "the one"? My period was a week late... I felt like I'd waited long enough!
So I "administered the test" and waited some more...

(3 minutes is way too long, btw)

And there it was. Faint. But there was a second line.

I went to the living room and said "Umm... Braylen, can you come here?". He came into the bathroom and I said, "Well, I think we're pregnant" and handed him the test. He stared at it for a few seconds and said "it's definitely darker than the last time!" (when we had the false positive test) and then, in true Braylen fashion... Pointed out a pimple on my chin.


ADD does not fade with age, just FYI.

Anyways, immediately he asked for a "redo" response and hugged and kissed me. Then we got ready for work and went on our merry way.

Though, how the heck do you concentrate after getting THAT kind of shock at 6:00 AM?!

At lunch time, I hurried down to CVS and bought two different brands of tests (different than the type I took the first time). Once I got back to work I took them and voila... Two different tests with two very clear plus signs!

Based on whattoexpect.com and advice from a nurse friend, we calculated that we were about 7 weeks along. We made our first prenatal appointment for July 5th.  We were going to wait until 7-13-13 to tell our families, but I NEEDED MY MOMMY after the first week of symptoms and stress at work, so we would up telling my side of the family on the Fourth of July. It wasn't at all how we planned (I had grand schemes to take video/pictures of their responses), but it was intimate and sweet and my mom cried, so what else could I ask for?

However, my appointment on the 5th didn't go quite as planned. Once we got there, the doctor also figured (based on the date of my last menstrual period) I was about 7 weeks, 1 day. Which is far enough along to see something on an ultrasound, so much to my surprise, we went right to the ultrasound room! I was so excited to see Little Dot for the first time!!

But when all was said and done, she couldn't find a gestational sac... anywhere. The lining of my uterus was thickened (as it should be for a pregnancy), but there was no sac for Baby to grow in that was evident on the u/s, which, for 7 weeks along.. There most definitely should've been. The doctor sent me down to the lab to have blood drawn to check the level of hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin or the "pregnancy hormone" that increases significantly during the first part of pregnancy and is what's detected on a home pregnancy test). The doctor could see my anxiety about not having the u/s go off without a hitch. She reassured me that depending upon what my blood level is, it might just be that we're not as far along as we thought. She didn't say it, but of course my mind deduced that it's either that or we lost the baby. 

So when they called us 2 hours later with the results of the blood test to tell me my hCG level was 550 (much much much lower than it should've been at 7 weeks), my mind went to the worst possible scenario. I thought we lost the baby. 

The nurse told me to come back on Monday morning to draw my blood again and see if my hCG had doubled, as it should, and we would go from there. So from Friday to Monday, we pretty much had no idea how to feel. I think that's probably the most anxiety and sadness I've ever felt in my life. I also think that's probably the most I have ever prayed for anything in my life. Every spare moment I was in prayer that God would give us strength and patience to get through whatever it is we were going to go through. I knew whatever would happen is out of our control and we needed to rely on Him for strength to keep going. We had so many people praying with us, I could never begin to thank you all individually. We told Braylen's parents on the 5th about the pregnancy, though it was a much different kind of news than we thought. We expected to show them an u/s picture and make it a big, happy surprise. Instead, we told them with fear and uncertainty and requests for more prayer. 

Monday morning came around and I got to the lab as soon as the doors opened. Of course they didn't have my paperwork, so I had to wait another hour for the OB office to open. After that, it took less than 10 minutes for them to call my name and draw blood. Last time, it took them less than 2 hours to get back to us with results. So when I didn't hear back from anyone until lunch time, I started to panic. I decided to go down to the doctor's office and wait. I knew they were going as fast as they could, but it made ME feel better to be there. Within 20 minutes, the nurse came out to tell me... 

My hCG went from 550 on Friday to 1800 on Monday!!!! 

We made an appointment for another ultrasound for the next day, Tuesday July 9th, 2013. Braylen and my mom took off work to come with me again, which was so nice. We went right for the u/s room again because by that point my hCG would've been over 2000 (which is what it has to be, at least, to see something on u/s). As soon as she started, this is what we saw: 

That hole in the middle at the top is the gestational sac!! That is exactly what we were hoping to see!! It's right where it should be (in the uterus) and is currently measuring at about 5 weeks... Though it's still too early to date it well enough. 

We went from extreme anxiety/sadness over the weekend to over-the-top joy and thankfulness for this sweet little blessing!! I literally have never been happier about anything in my entire life. I've also never been this scared of losing anything in my entire life. But I know and have faith that God's timing and His plan are absolutely perfect. If anything, the [almost] scare we had last weekend reiterated that 10x over. It is impossible for me to do this without Him... Without His strength, comfort, and patience. I am so thankful that he brought us that milestone to go over because it showed us just how much we need him and just how important prayer is in our family. 

Today Braylen and I will be baptized. We planned to do this long before we found out about Little Dot, but it means even more to me now. There aren't enough words to express how I feel today. I am so blessed to have the opportunity to be baptized in front of our family and friends. I am so blessed to be baptized with our first child growing in my belly. I am so blessed to be baptized alongside my husband, my best friend, my partner in life, the father of my child. 

Today is a beautiful day.

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