Tuesday, February 28, 2012

31 Weeks!

Is this really happening?! I cannot believe I am already 31 weeks! I have all three of my showers in the next two weeks and I am so excited to see what Titus is going to get from our friends and family. And on top of all the shower goodies we will be getting in the bedding, curtains, pillows, changing table pad, and wall decor (more on this to come) in the next week or so. I can't wait to get this nursery put all the way together! It's crazy to think that by the time Spring Break comes I will be 6 weeks away from delivery and everything will be (hopefully) completely ready for little man's arrival...

Pregnancy Update
How far along? 31 Weeks
Total weight gain: 20 lbs gained (on par to gain 28-30, depending on amount of Nutty Bars consumed in the next 9 weeks)
Maternity clothes? definitely maternity jeans and leggings (love me some leggings), and about 50/50 on tops. The major bonus to maternity tops are that they are long enough to cover my belly; if I'm wearing regular shirts they have to be reallllly long.
Sleep: I slept great up until about 28 weeks, now I just have trouble getting comfortable, especially when I get back in bed after peeing. My back hurts and it feels like my stomach alone weighs about 35 lbs... Unisom is great though! When I take it I sleep really great, but I don't take it very often because it can make me groggy the next day.
Best moment this week: Having a shower with my cell group girls! They are so sweet and got me some really great stuff!

Miss Anything? Coke and sweets... I've had to cut back since my glucose tests said my body doesn't process sugar well while I'm pregnant (and of course it is all I crave!). Also not having to wash my hands a million times a day! Since I've quadrupled my bathroom trips I also have quadrupled my hand washing, so annoying!
Movement: lots of movement! It has definitely transitioned from little jabs to rolling movements of elbows and knees and whatnot. And I'm definitely able to see him moving; if I set my phone or remote on my tummy it bounces with his movements.
Food cravings: Coke, asian food, strawberries, bananas, cupcakes (or really any cake, lets be honest), cheese bread and marinara
Anything making you queasy or sick: I'm really sensitive to smells in general, so anything stinky. Greasy Mexican food. Also green veggies? Normally I love cucumber, broccoli, asparagus, etc... but right now those all sound really awful to me! I do still like salad though.
Gender: Better still be a boy! 

Labor Signs: HA, no thankfully!
Symptoms: A little heartburn, backache, waddling, LOTS of peeing
Belly Button in or out? still in! The lip of the actual button sometimes makes it look like something is sticking out, but this button is holding on for dear life.
Wedding rings on or off? on-my hands swell occasionally, but only when I am walking and then they go back to normal.
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy-80%, Irrationally Sad/Crying- 5%, Irrationally angry- 5%, Just Plain Tired-10%
Looking forward to: getting the nursery completed. I will be so happy when I see a complete setup to welcome Titus home! I know I still have plenty of time, but the nesting has really kicked in and I'm definitely ready to get everything in its place...

Weeks 10-30

Monday, February 20, 2012

The Best There (almost) Never Was

I was reading an article today and this really stuck out to me:
"Consider the following:
  • A preacher and his wife are very poor and almost destitute. They already have 14 children when she finds out she is pregnant with the 15th. Considering their impoverished status and the excessive global population, should an abortion be recommended?
  • A father is sick. The mother has tuberculosis. They have four children. The oldest is blind, the second has already died, the third is deaf, and the fourth also has TB. The mother is pregnant again. Should an abortion be recommended?
  • A white man viciously rapes an innocent 13-year-old black girl and she becomes pregnant. Should an abortion be recommended?
  • A young, unmarried teenager becomes pregnant, greatly shaming her family. Although she recently got engaged, her fiance is not the father of the baby and he's beside himself with grief and anger. Should an abortion be recommended?
In the first case, John Wesley, one of the greatest evangelists of the 19th century would have been aborted. In the second case, Beethoven. In the third, Ethel Waters, the great African-American gospel singer. If the answer was "yes" to the fourth case, it just sanctioned the abortion of Jesus Christ."

This article only gave a few examples of women who were faced with a very real circumstance that might elicit having an abortion, but there are many more such as Steve Jobs, Faith Hill, Edgar Allen Poe, Tim Tebow, Jesse Jackson, John Lennon, Bill Clinton, Sarah McGlachlan... And this doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of all the wonderful people who aren't "famous" but have touched the lives of thousands of people.

-I didn't write this to slam Pro-Choice groups or even to try and convince anyone of anything. 
-I didn't write this because I am a Christian and the bible tells me that every life is valuable and worth saving.
-I didn't write this because I know what it feels like to grow a life inside of you and can't imagine stopping the breath of this little person.
-And I didn't write this because in my line of work I have done a lot of research about when life begins and scientifically I believe it points to conception.
-What I DID write this post for are the clients I have seen walk through the door at my job. Every day I meet women who are faced with terrible situations in which abortion feels like the best option and I would be lying to say their lives aren't extremely difficult. It is not my job to tell them what option to choose, my only goal is to make sure they leave our center fully educated on their options so no woman ever has to look back and say she made a choice out of ignorance. 

So here is why this article about women choosing life and those babies growing up to touch our world really hit home for me: I have counseled women who are victims of rape or abuse. Others have been left by their man or family to raise a child on their own. Some clients would have to give up something important (reputation, education, friendships, money) in order to chose life. I speak with women who are drug addicts, have felony records, and most often, women who are just plain-old heart broken. Some of these women choose abortion, a few of which feel confident in their decision and others who feel deep regret and sorrow over their choice. I don't judge them, I know their hearts were heavy and their situations difficult. Instead, I pray for God to heal any hurt they may gain in this process and call them to make sure they know they are loved anyway. But after two years of counseling women who are in crisis pregnancy situations, I have never, ever, had a woman who chose life over abortion and told me she regretted it. I'm not saying there has never been a woman who has, I'm just saying in my large pool of data I've never met one. I've had tons of emails and phone calls with updates on these sweet babies and how they are the most joyful part of their mommy's lives, but I have yet to have a woman say she wishes she would have chosen herself over her baby.

(sigh) I know how some of you are going to take this post, and I thought about that before I published it. Please know that I respect your right to your own opinion and I fully believe you are entitled to think whatever you want (as am I). If you say you support abortion, my response is going to be, we live in a country where you have a right to think your own thoughts and I am so grateful for that! So let's skip the argument and agree that freedom is wonderful :) 

Friday, February 17, 2012

Guest Bedroom Wall Art

In the process of preparing for Titus, we have been cleaning, painting, reorganizing, and changing around spare bedrooms. Our guest room became the nursery and our office became a guest room, which of course I had to redecorate! Thank goodness for Urban Outfitters who makes incredibly cheap duvet covers which made for a quick flip!
     I didn't have much wall space in the guest bedroom to decorate (it is also my workout room and the dog kennel room), but I did want to do one large piece of art on the very big blank wall by the window. My friend Courtney gave me the idea to do 4 large canvas' in colors that matched my new duvet, so I decided to take that idea and run with it. 

Step 1: Decide what I wanted to write on the canvas' and put down stickers to paint over and peel off later. I went with It Is Well because 1) This might be my favorite hymn of all time, and 2) the lyrics matched my new woodland duvet cover! (deer, racoons, trees, etc. I promise it is cuter than it sounds-no camo included)

Step 2: Find out how many stickers/letters I would need and how I would want them organized on the page. I knew I wanted all the words to be toward the center of the the canvas' as a whole, so I just needed to make sure I spaced them in a way I liked.

Step 3: Place stickers on canvas

Step 4: Paint canvas'

 Step 5: Let dry overnight, then peel off stickers. Okay, TRY to peel off stickers. But guess what? I put my sticky stickers on too well and they wouldn't come off... So what I ended up doing was painting over the letters instead, which worked out really well because it gave them a slightly 3D effect to the words off the canvas. 
Here is what I think would fix it: Next time I would paint over the canvas in white paint THEN put the stickers down. The stickers directly on the canvas made it impossible for them to peel off all the way.

This is what it looked like when I tried to peel the stickers off

Impromptu fix! Just paint over the stickers :)

All four completed with paint!

Step 6: Hang on wall!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

3D Ultrasound... Cool or Not Cool?

When we decided we wanted to do a 3D ultrasound of Titus I immediately knew one of two things would happen: 
1) I would look at it and go, "eh, it looks pretty much like every other baby ultrasound."
2) I would look at it and because I knew it belonged to me I would see Garland and I in that tiny face even though it didn't really look much like us at all.

I thought I would be more like 95% option 1 and 5% option 2, but surprisingly, I was probably more like 70%/30%. While I definitely thought he looked like a generic baby for the most part, I also noticed right away that he had some pretty full lips. This was so fun because Garland and I both have healthy sized lips and I knew this was definitely something unique to Titus because most babies don't have much fat to go around at 29 weeks, so lips aren't usually super defined by this point. He also looked like he could maybe, just maybe have Garland's nose. It's really too early to tell, but it was fun to guess!

Overall, here is my synopsis: It was difficult to get a good picture. It has to be the perfect storm of the baby turned the right way, the placenta and umbilical cord out of the way, and nothing floating in front of him. We had to go back two times (the first time he wouldn't even budge and face the camera) and we still didn't get a lot of great pics. My ultrasound tech is sweet and has offered to try a third time next week, which is so nice, but I hate that it so difficult to get a good picture that this is necessary. Overall, I say this was a cool experience but for the price (3D is not covered by your insurance), I don't know if I would do it again.

But here is the fruit of this hard work, anyway! I will boldly say I have the most handsome looking sepia colored blob in all the world.

Face (umbilical cord is the string covering up his left eye)
leg and foot (seeing toes was actually really cool)
 Full lips!
 Ten tiny toes! I love this picture
 Garland's nose? I think so.