I – Four

I, you are four today.

I can hardly believe it’s been four years since one of the roughest and darkest nights of my life as I labored you into the world was forever redeemed and brightened when you were finally in my arms. Our beloved rainbow baby, our precious light-bearer – we are celebrating all you are today!

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Little R Update – 40 Weeks!

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How far along? 40 weeks today!

Total weight gain: I’ve lost a little bit and remained stagnant for the past couple of days. It’s looking like I may top out at 35 lbs gained for this pregnancy.

Food cravings: Still protein, warm cozy drinks, comfort foods like soups and pasta.

Anything making you queasy or sick: Only stress, for the most part.

Symptoms: My poor pelvis is done. My muscles are constantly pulling from the weight and the extra strain of him being dropped. I’ve taken to calling my back “rice Krispies” because it snap, crackle, pops all the time! I’ve had another bout of false labor, with scattered braxton hicks every day. Still unending heartburn.

Mood: Very very done. I also have a lot more peace and hope regarding this birth than I have had yet, so I’m very thankful for that.

Sleep: Still not great nor horrible.

Dreams: None that I remember.

Kicking Patterns: Still a chill little dude who occasionally starfishes all his limbs out. He will also occasionally settle part of his body on my sciatic nerve, which is all kinds of uncomfortable.

Labor Signs: Not much except another bout or two of false labor. He seems pretty comfy at the moment, so I have a feeling he’ll be a couple of days overdue at least.

Appointments: I have my 40 week appointment tomorrow, which will include an NST (non stress test) and an AFI (amniotic fluid index). Both of these tests are noninvasive and will make sure Little R is healthy and my body is still a healthy place for him.

Preparations for baby: Both our bag and the girls’ bag is essentially packed, with the few things that would need to be thrown in right before we leave assembled and ready to go. The Christmas tree is fully decorated, and most of the other decorations are up. We’ve made progress on getting the house cleaned (or at least cleaned enough, at this point). We are just about as ready as we can be. =)

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Hopefully, the very next blog post will be introducing Little R. We can hardly wait to meet our son!

Little R Update – 39 Weeks

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How far along? 39 weeks, 1 day!

Total weight gain: Nearly 40 lbs. This is the most I’ve gained with any of my pregnancies – one of the many ways this pregnancy has been different from the girls! My weight gain has definitely slowed over the last week or so, so we’ll see if I pack on any more. =)

Food cravings: Protein, smoothies, raisin bran crunch, nearly anything comforting and full of flavor, earl grey tea lattes. Veggies still always sound good. =)

Anything making you queasy or sick: Not lately, thank goodness!

Symptoms: Terrible SI joint/pelvic pain. It’s not the SPD (symphysis pubis dysfunction) that I had with Little I (thank the LORD), but I still have enough extra relaxin in my system that my pelvic joints especially go out of whack within 24-48 hrs of being adjusted. Lots of heartburn, a few bouts of false labor, and generally feeling like a beached whale. =)

Mood: A bit stressed. We still have lots to do, but the nesting has really kicked in for both Ry and I and we’re both praying/hoping that we’ll be able to knock out the last few things on our to-do list before Little R comes. Getting things on the list checked off is a big emotional lift for me, so I’m hoping to feel better and better as the week goes on and we continue to get things done.

Sleep: It’s been hit or miss. If I can get my brain to quiet down, I’ll get 3-4 hours of sleep (I think) before needing to wake up fully to very slowly and painfully turn over, where I hopefully sleep/doze for another 2-3 hours. I’m trying to nap/doze for an hour or so during the day while Little I naps, and when I can manage to do so, it really helps my mood and energy.

Dreams: None lately that I can remember.

Kicking Patterns: He is still a chill little dude for the most part, although he does party-hearty around the 12 o’clock hour, be it noon or midnight. Then it’s like he’s playing jump-rope or something! He will occasionally try to starfish all his limbs out, and of course, my pesky uterine walls get in the way, so he tries to push them against me harder . . . I’ve had to actually smack my own stomach/his hand/foot a time or two to get him to stop. I know. I chuckled about it too. =) However, he has not done the kicking up under my ribs like N did, nor the boxer punching to my nethers like Little I, so I’m very grateful. He has, for the most part, been very kind to his mommy in utero.

Labor Signs: I finally had my first bout of false labor a few days ago. I have a history of at least 3-4 bouts of false labor before the real thing, so I was waiting for them to start. I’ve had another bout of false labor since then. Little R also dropped yesterday, which was great in the sense that it’s so much easier to take a deep breath and I can eat more! Not so great in the sense that he has settled heeeeeavily into my pelvis, which is cranky anyway. I keep telling myself it will not be much longer, it will not be forever!

Appointments: I had my 39 week appointment today, and it went well. I am between 3-4 cm dilated, 50% effaced, his heart rate was great, he is head down, and my blood pressure was great. I tested positive for Group B Strep, which makes me 3 for 3. I’m not thrilled about this as it means I will be hooked up to antibiotics for 4 hours of my labor. I labored much quicker with Little I than N, so I’m hopeful to get the full 4 hours in without being fully dilated, otherwise I will have to labor through the contractions fully dilated and not be allowed to push (yes, it happened. It was as fun as it sounds).

Preparations for baby: Things have slowly but surely been getting done. So far, lactation smoothie mixes, padsicles, cookies for nurses, labor aid materials and a few freezer meals have been either made or purchased. We’re probably halfway through getting the hospital bag and the girls’ bag packed. Rock n’ play, baby seat, and swing covers have all been washed and just need to be reassembled. We’re hoping to finish the Christmas decorating tomorrow. We need to wash our car seat covers and the infant insert, finish cleaning the apartment (as best we can with two littles), and grab a few more nursing essentials and few clothing items for Little R, which I hope to do tomorrow. My new pump arrived today. Whew, just reading this list makes me feel better. We really have gotten a lot done, and there’s just a bit more left to do. =)

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It’s still so surreal to me that I’ll be holding my son (my son!) so soon. Please pray for me as his delivery nears. There were a few traumatic things that happened during and after Little I’s birth that give me a lot of anxiety as I head towards another birth. I need and ask for prayers for peace and that I will place my hope and trust in the Lord where it belongs.

I can’t wait to meet you, Little R!