Waiting for baby
What a year it has been, spending quite a bit of it pregnant! As I sit here and write this, I’m nearing my 38th week of growing this little girl inside of me. I wanted to reflect a bit on this pregnancy, since it has been a wave of changes, emotions and struggles.
Ara and I found out on May 13 that we would become parents and we sat shocked for …longer than I had thought would be the case. We had both decided it seemed as good a time as any to see if expanding our family was in our future—but getting confirmation that it was indeed happening was a shock to us. After seven years of marriage, of just us TWO, it was hard to believe we’d be bringing a new, unknown piece into our life that we’ve worked so hard to curate. Now, nine months into growing this little human inside of me, I’m still in shock that we are losing the “two” of us. I know in my heart that Ara and I both have so much love to give this new little baby and it will be a beautiful addition to make our family three (or five if you count our first fur babies). But my mind is definitely reeling these last few weeks in savoring up all the time I can with just the love of my life.
During the first trimester I struggled daily with morning sickness (week 6-16) and I felt like I was in such a fog. I was taking it day-by-day and trying to feel somewhat human through all the fatigue, vomiting and tiredness. I am so thankful for Ara that he was superman during this time of the pregnancy. He stepped up in every way possible for our house to continue running and to keep me functioning during those hard weeks of sickness. He’s not known for being the chef in our house and I’ll always remember the day he concocted the most amazing “summer pasta” on a day I actually felt like eating something other than cheeseburgers or hash browns. Once I hit 18 weeks, I felt utterly amazing—what a change from those 10 weeks in the first trimester! We did the majority of our travel during the second trimester and I’m so glad we made a point to travel to so many places during that time. Every place we visited, Ara and I found each other discussing whether our daughter will be excited to hear she’s been to all these spots while “inside” or if she’ll be upset that we went before she could really enjoy them. Our hope is that when we tell her stories of all the places we visited with her while she was growing inside, that it will instill a spirit of adventure and travel.
In the last couple weeks, it has set in that I will be adding a new title to my name: mother. I even asked Ara last night, “How will I be a mom?!” I’ve spent the last 31 years just being Liz and I’ve never made such a big jump into a role before. Labor aside, there’s so many unknowns when welcoming a baby and taking on the role of a mother. It seems wild to me that people do this every day and it seems like such a natural transition for so many women. I’m so thankful and feel utterly blessed to be surrounded by so many friends in our local community that are walking this motherhood journey with me. I have two amazing neighbor friends who are beautiful examples who emulate a Godly motherhood. I also have been blessed with two close friends here to walk this pregnancy journey with—and made several more during the pregnancy. From symptoms to baby products, to sharing in each other’s joy when finding out baby’s gender—I had no idea how amazing this community of friends would uplift me during this unknown time of transitioning to motherhood. Many friends and family back in the US have commented that it must be hard to start a family while we are abroad, but I can’t help to think that it’s completely the opposite. I feel extremely uplifted and loved by our community of friends that have become family here to help as I make this journey into motherhood and as we become a family.
The big question lately has been, “How are you feeling?” as I near the end of the pregnancy. I find that so many people say they are so uncomfortable when they get to this stage and late in the game of pregnancy. I actually have been feeling pretty good! I’m trying to love on my body the best I know how at this point, attending weekly prenatal yoga, getting prenatal massages (game changer!) and some chiropractic care. I think all those combined have helped my body adjust to growing this little human inside of me!
As Christmas and baby girl’s due date of January 6 approaches, Ara and I are hunkering down at home and excited for a little down time before she joins our family and we introduce her to her kitty siblings. We can’t help but wonder how many days or weeks are left before she arrives. This whole time I’ve been telling everyone I think she’s going to be early. My sister had her boys early and my Mom had my sister and I early—so that must mean I’m bound to have her early! Well, currently she seems pretty happy cooking and no signs of coming early. We also have been joking for awhile that we hope she comes before 2019 so we can get the tax break for this year. Many people have guessed she will arrive on New Year’s Eve or New Years Day but I’m hoping to not watch the amazing display of fireworks that happen here in Germany from a hospital window. I’ve been following along in a devotional that a friend gave me called “Waiting in Wonder” and the passage from last night couldn’t have been more fitting for our current stage of waiting: