Archive for the ‘pregnancy’ Category

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Of babies and barren wombs

December 8, 2010

Wow, Sew‘s live-blogging during her birth and prompt post of her labor story from the hospital has put me to shame! I did not even have a computer in the hospital. And I have been so slow to find words and computer time to tell the story. But I love that awesome picture of Sew during labor, sitting in her hospital bed with the computer, smiling … makes me think I should have had an epidural.

There are babies everywhere. Some have come early and some a bit late, but there has been a huge rush of babies in the last few weeks in the once-infertile blogosphere. I was the bearer of one of those babies. If you check out my babycentric blog, you can see many pictures of my new son. He was born Thanksgiving night and is healthy and doing well, thanks be to God. I am posting near-daily photos on that blog for the benefit of my family, who are all dispersed up and down the east coast and demanding daily updates about the new member of the family.

So, it’s an exciting time for those having the babies, but I keep thinking about all those still waiting and how hard it probably is. And although I am thrilled to be home with my new son, I still get confused and angry. In church on Sunday there was mention of Elizabeth, ” she, who was called barren.” I smiled and looked at the baby next to me.

“With God, nothing is impossible.”  But then I asked God, “really?!” What about all those friends waiting so much longer, for whom things seem really impossible right now? What about them!?

And I lifted you up and pray that with God, all things are possible for you.

I was privileged to pray for many bloggers during my labor. For those of you that shared your prayer concerns with me, thank you for sharing with me and inviting me into your lives in that way. Admittedly, my labor was a bit more difficult than I expected and I may not have prayed as much as I had wished. But I carried your intentions — and they carried me — through the first four hours. My water broke — all of it — which made contractions start in a rather severe manner — close together and pretty strong. I had my list of prayer intentions, and I cried out for you as I leaned over on the bed or my exercise ball.

I pray for God to relieve your suffering and send a child into your life very soon.

My wait was shorter than many of you, but I find I am very, very grateful for that gift of infertility. Of course, it’s easier to be grateful for the years of crying and waiting now, once you have a baby at home, right? I know. But for me (and it certainly would not be this way for everyone!), I now see that time was crucial to make me a better mother, friend, spouse, child of God. Taking care of another human life is hard, especially for someone who tends to be as selfish as I do. I am much more grateful for the opportunity to give up my life for this little one now, knowing how hard it was to get here… Did I not long to be awoken at 4 am for so long? And how many others are still waiting?

I wish *everyone* was posting about babies right now. I am praying for all those still waiting. I still find it hard to trust that with God, nothing is impossible. But I know I should. It is the season of Advent, a time where we celebrate waiting and expectation. A time where we celebrate miraculous conceptions and a little baby who was the hope and savior of the world. A time when we celebrate how God came in great humility to be with us, to share our suffering.  Come, Lord Jesus!

 

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Still alive (and kicking!)

July 14, 2010

What happens when an infertility blog gets pregnant? Well, in my case, I guess it goes silent. I had not even realized it had been so long since I had updated until a dear blog friend emailed me to ask if everything was OK. Life has been very busy, overwhelming at times. And I’ve been at a loss for words on what to say about pregnancy on an infertility blog.

I do have one post strictly about infertility that I will do next! But otherwise, I guess I should just embrace that what I am dealing with is pregnancy … and write about that.

I have read much about the difficulty in transitioning from infertility to pregnancy, and it has definitely been hard for me. On that first morning when I got the positive test, I thought it would be easy. While riding my bike to work, I started weeping, thinking of the enormity of this change of events. And I had this overriding calm that this baby was a gift from God and all would be well. I just knew it. I rejoiced.

That lasted about 24 hours.

Then, the Voices In My Head started drowning out that comforting voice of God. And I spent the next — oh, 15 weeks? — in fear. I was sure I was delusional, perhaps not even pregnant. I was worried about the baby. I feared every possible kind of miscarriage — and there are a lot of them. I hesitated to tell friends about the pregnancy because I was so scared, I did not know how I would deal with their joy. But with every medical appointment, I got a little more confidence. First I saw the gestational sac and the little heartbeat. Then we heard the heartbeat. Then I saw the tiny baby — a real baby! Then we bought a heart-rate monitor for home use, because I am paranoid enough I need to check and make sure the baby is alive about once a week. So far, so good.

If my prayer life had been better in that time (sorry, God — I really, really am), I am sure that would have helped even more.

Once my placenta started doing its thing in the second trimester, I no longer had to take prometrium. I no longer need to call the awesome nurses at Dr. S’s office. I have not had blood drawn in 6 weeks — the longest I’ve gone without visiting a lab for probably two years.  Now I am just a normal, low-risk pregnancy. It is really wild!

We are 21 weeks and a couple of days today. More than half-way through this pregnancy! I had a minor break-down last night, realizing that I “wasted” much of the pregnancy being worried. I love, LOVE being pregnant (at least the second trimester). But I have been afraid to enjoy it. I am going to try to reverse that now. I really want to relish every moment — especially since I do not know if I will ever be pregnant again.

I’ve gained about 10 lbs so far. I was sporting a pretty awesome beer belly (without the beer) for a while, but over the past week it has developed into what I think of as an undeniable baby bump (undeniable to me — a stranger might not be certain.) It honestly shocks me every time I see it. I get a glimpse of myself in the mirror or a window and think — who is that pregnant woman with my head? I bought two stretchy-waisted skirts from athleta (love!) and have been surviving with those, bella bands and some borrowed items from my sister and a good friend. I bought my first maternity clothing item 2 weeks ago. It still felt a little daring.

We are planning to wait to find out the sex of the baby. For the time being, we’re calling him/her “Pavo” (or “Pavito” … or sometimes “Pavita,” which is not a real word but gives it a feminine ending). It means “turkey” (or “little turkey”) in Spanish. Turkey because the baby is due around Thanksgiving. And the turkey is a very noble bird. Funnily, baby goes by “Donovan” at work — my coworker named him/her thus when we watched a World Cup match together (after Landon Donovan, soccer star). It was rather sweet.

And here is where we get to the kicking part of “alive and kicking” — I can feel Pavo move! It’s awesome. It felt sort of like fluttering or like something playing with my nerve endings for a while. Now I get what seems like a big jab every now and then. I actually gasped yesterday once when a kick surprised me. I’m not sure how much of it is the baby itself, or what might be Braxton-Hicks — sometimes it’s such a big feeling, I wonder if it is the latter? But I like to think Donovan is practicing to be a soccer star. S/he sure got excited during the Spain vs. Germany match! I assume it was early enthusiasm for the Spanish team. Ah, so proud of the wee babe already.