Today marks the 41st week of pregnancy for me with our 2nd baby. I do feel like I have been pregnant for-ev-er. :-) I won't deny that. I know that I really haven't been and won't be. I feel like "this is the longest I've EVER been pregnant in my LIFE!" but as this is only our 2nd child I don't know that I can proclaim that too loudly. ;-)
The past week or two have certainly been more trying, physically and emotionally. My emotions haven't been terrible, there was one weekend where for a day and a half I just wanted to sit down and cry "just because." The rest of the time I am just exhausted almost all of the time.
Not as a way of complaining, but more just sharing and recording for my own sake, most days I feel like I am barely going to survive. Some mornings I wake up and think "there's no way I can have the baby today, I'm too tired!"
Sleep eludes me several hours each night and if I try to nap in the day I rarely fall asleep very deeply or for very long at all, I just lie there dozing and resting (wishing I could be sleeping!). Saturday and Sunday mornings are my catch-up and recovery time when it comes to sleep. I don't have to bust out of bed early to get Daniel's breakfast and lunch, so I can stay asleep and get a second cycle of good sleep. I have not checked for sure, but I think I usually fall asleep the first time at night around 1 or 2am... then I usually HAVE to get up about 4:30 or 5 and it takes me a bit to fall back asleep from a bathroom visit. Then on workdays the alarm starts going off around 6 or 6:30, so not really any time for another good "sleep" in there. Without feeling guilty about it, I do not bust myself out of bed Sunday mornings so we can get to Sunday School because that is ONE day that I can sleep more and not feel dead all day long.
The other downside to the past 2 or 3 weeks of this journey has been that my back has been bothering me more and more. Especially if I lie on my left side, for some reason my back just doesn't like it very well. But I get weary of being on my right side. :-) So in the mornings I cripple out of bed and creep around for most of the morning until my back gets most of the kinks out and then I'm a little better for the rest of the day. Susannah goes in circles around me quite a bit lately, and I feel like it takes me 5 minutes to get from one side of the kitchen to the other! I have been going to the chiropractor weekly for the last month or two, and that really helps.
Between lack of good rest, back pain, and feeling like an over-inflated beach ball that an elephant is sitting on, no, it has not been easy lately. Many days I feel like I simply cannot go on. I cannot move another muscle. I cannot bend over or squat down to pick one more thing up off the floor, or lean and stretch to wash another dish, or figure out one more meal to eat. Multiple times each day though, I just pray for God to give me strength and grace to get me through the moment. Through another few minutes, another hour, another day. And He does. And I make it. I have Scripture verses taped to my cupboard door, and the lyrics to the hymn, O Love That Will Not Let Me Go, taped up at the kitchen sink. I find comfort and identity in the 2nd line "I rest my weary soul in Thee!" as well as throughout the rest of the song.
A few good things that have come from being pregnant this long...
I was able to attend church this morning which was a surprise mini-concert and then message from Steve Green. If the baby was already born (and hadn't come extra early), I probably would not be up to going to church yet. This morning was a HUGE blessing to my soul and I'm so glad that I am still pregnant so that I could attend.
I have been keeping the laundry caught up and the floors better picked up. :-) I am working with Susannah very purposely helping her keep her toys picked up when she finished playing with them, or before naps and bedtimes. (Plus it's SO much easier for her to pick them up than for me to!) We have had more time to implement "room time" into most of Susannah's days where she plays in her room by herself for 20 minutes (we started out with just a few minutes and worked up to 20). This gives me a chance to sit down a catch my breath, close my eyes if I really need to, or give my undivided attention to a task (which will soon likely be one of the baby's feedings).
A continued blessing for this pregnancy is that the baby and I are continuing to do great. I still am not experiencing any swelling (aside from the big beach ball, of course!), my blood pressure and heart rate have been great, and baby continues to pass with flying colors each visit as well. Now if I could just have a little more lung room to breathe deeply again!!
To close out this update, which will most likely be my last pregnancy update before the baby comes, here is a picture from today. Officially 41 weeks pregnant. Yes, it was 51° when we left for church this morning and I wore short sleeves and no jacket. :-) And yes, I do wear jeans to church lately!! I grew out of my (non-maternity) skirt around 37-38 weeks (rather, I had it hiked up as far as I dared hike it and it was getting too small to fit around and over), and as I have never found a maternity skirt I like, I figure a couple Sundays wearing jeans is not going to hurt anything. (And it helps that in our church some dress to the nines and others dress in jeans, so I'm not an oddball wearing jeans. :-) )