Oh yeah, July is SOON

May 7, 2010 at 12:42 am (Family, Parenthood, WJ) (, )

A couple of weeks ago, at 29 weeks pregnant, a thought popped into my head: “Hey, we probably need to do some preparation for this baby.”  Two weeks and a midwife visit later, I’m officially freaking out.

Since I haven’t posted much, it may not be so obvious that my body has trucked along in this pregnancy without nearly as much thought as I gave the first two.  I’ve certainly felt pregnant (and thusly tired) throughout, but this time my head hasn’t roamed to the baby(ies!) every minute or so.  Such things probably happen to most pregnant women dealing with the everyday needs of three youngin’s.  In most ways the distraction from the pregnancy obsession was a good thing, but I’m now realizing it did help get me in the right frame of mind for birth and a newborn.  Sort of like Braxton Hick’s contractions getting one ready for real labor.

Just to be clear though, I am still allowed to get annoyed when people say- “your pregnancy has gone by so fast!”  Um, no, I’ve felt like I was growing a baby every single day I was growing this baby.  All 216(ish!) days.

So far, what I’ve done for Apple is clean out half of Greta’s dresser for her clothes.  Not that I have any yet.  (I expect to get Greta’s back that went to my niece, but what if it’s a boy?!?)  Generally, baby clothes are usually extremely easy to come by.  More worrisome to me is our lack of a doula, a plan for our kids while I’m in labor, a birth tub, a car seat, all of the homebirth necessities, and a name we agree on.  Most importantly, I just don’t feel like I’m in the right state of mind for birthing yet.  I’m hoping that’s because I’m not supposed to give birth yet, and that it’s coming.  We’re signed up for an all day birth class, and last time that really helped me feel on the same page as Mark, ready.

In the meantime, there’s birthday parties for two six! year! old! boys! and their father, plenty of meals to prepare and wet panties to change, a preschool and kindergarten year to end, and a baby that needs to put her head down.


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Uno Bambino

December 12, 2009 at 5:37 pm (Parenthood, WJ) (, )

For the past month, I had become increasingly sure I’m growing two babies.  I was worried enough to ask my midwife for an ultrasound as soon as possible.  I’d never had one in the first trimester before.

Yesterday was the big day.  Within a few seconds of scanning, we had our answer- ONE baby.  One!  Healthy!  Baby!

She gave us a little  show of bouncing around.  Hopefully she won’t get too used to somersaulting (Greta’s resulted in a cord twisted and twisted around her).  At this point, we couldn’t see much of a face.  Even though she’s less than 1.5 inches long, she already has so much information stored inside her- all the characteristics I wonder about.  Will she grow brown hair, be laid back, and look more like Auden than Parker and Greta?  As I picture.  Will she be a she?  She will reveal her traits in time.

I have to admit, it does feel a bit anti-climatic.  I had it in my head I’d be calling people yesterday, with news of two or even three babies.  Freaking out.  I was all prepared for going into crisis mode.  Mind you, we don’t want more than one baby by any stretch.  And I’m not sure we’d survive very well.  One might test our family enough.  And a 2-1-3 family (twins, single, triplets) isn’t enough for a reality TV career.  Still, one single fourth baby seems so normal.  I guess we’ll just have to find different ways to be abnormal.

Greta just sat down beside me and started scanning her belly with a flashlight, looking for her own “baby”.  (She got to attend the ultrasound yesterday.)  A couple minutes later, she ran out and came back with a baby doll bib around her neck.  The speed with which she switches between pretending she’s a mama, pretending she’s a baby, and just being plain two years old has been baffling me.  Lots of processing going on in her brain!

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Prego my Eggo

November 20, 2009 at 6:33 pm (Parenthood, WJ) (, )

So here’s some news. Baby numero 4 is his (or her) way to the JaRuud house.

My head has been swimming for a couple weeks now, as has my stomach.  We haven’t told anyone but the kids and one friend, and I’m not one for secrets.  I feel the need to blab today.  Why not tell the whole internet?  And the few friends that read this!

This is the longest I’ve gone into a pregnancy (not far really, though- 7 weeks), without telling my family.  Why not?  Well, I guess I’m feeling a little teenage-unwed-mother.  Though I’m not unwed, and clearly I’m not a teenager.  Maybe I’m just feeling a little silly.  Three-quarters of my children weren’t planned!  Can’t you guys control yourselves?  I picture my mom saying the same thing as she did when I called her to tell her I was pregnant the first time:  “Whoa.  *long pause*  I better go get your dad.”

Here’s a looking-glass into some of the crazy brain twirling-

*A baby!  A sweet little ball whose curled up position shows me exactly the way he curled inside me.

-Oh, we can so not afford a baby right now.  Before I had babies, I was disillusioned into thinking children were not expensive.  I’d buy used clothes, used toys; our bottom line would barely be impacted.  Silly me.  Those kids actually eat!  They require a bigger car, a bigger house.  Clothes and toys are not the half of it.  When I was single my default I-don’t-want-to-cook-dinner was a slice of pizza and a beer from the pizza joint across the street for about $8.  Now that meal for us is about $40 (minus the beer for the kids), and it’s not across the street in Suburbia.  And our annual income is now less than when I was eating the $8 pizza.

*A whole new JaRuud person.  Judging by the lovely gene combinations Mark and I made with his siblings, he has a great chance of adding to the world in the wonderful ways of imagination, silliness, creativity, and happiness.

-How am I ever going to handle four such creative, opinionated, messy, LOUD individuals on a daily basis?  I’m having trouble with three.  Trouble might be the wrong world.  I don’t think anyone else would say I’m having trouble.  I get compliments on my kids all the time.  I do have a hard time feeling I’m doing a good job at this motherhood thing.  Adding to the load can’t help.

*Baby smells.  Breathe in.  Breathe out.  Calming baby smells.

-How in the world do those moms of 10 kids manage to be pregnant while raising the other 9 kids?  I am having serious trouble coping.  I am drained of energy.  I’ve agreed to turn on the television many more times than I’d normally.  My patience is way under par.  Mt. Foldmore is growing and I have zero ambition to tackle it.  The nausea has set in, and all I want to eat is bagels and cream cheese.  Fruit and veggies have been lacking in my kids’ meals because I don’t feel like eating them.  Thankfully Mark has picked up a lot of the slack, but I feel sooo guilty.  He didn’t sign up for this.  Intentionally.  Then again, neither did I.  Intentionally.  Back in my first pregnancy I kept a detailed journal every day.  In my second pregnancy, I intended to do another journal, and wrote a couple days.  This time I know I won’t, but it’s nice to refer to the first journal.  I wrote back then, “No one tells you beginning pregnancy is so taxing.”  At least I know this is normal for me.  I also know with that pregnancy nausea got significantly better at 9.5 weeks.  Just a couple more weeks then.

-Lurking is the thought:  This pregnancy feels a lot like my first one.  The one with twin boys.  I’m praying the similarity is carrying a male, not carrying TWO.

*Sibling relationships are amazing to witness.  Kids in big families bond like none other.  Learn to give like none other.  Four is such a nice even (and square!) number.  It’s been my favorite number, since high school, when I decided it should be the default guess on any math or science test if I didn’t know the answer.  I’m pretty sure somewhere waaaay waaay in the depths of my mind I knew this would happen, I knew this is right.  Greta won’t be the odd one out anymore.  All three are really excited.  Auden and Parker have known for a while that you need a part of a man and a part of a woman to make a baby.  For around a year that satisfied them, but one day recently Auden asked how those two pieces get together.  Boy how they laughed at my answer.  I asked them at dinner after I knew I was pregnant, “Do you guys think we should have any more babies?”  They got excited even then, “Oh yes.  Make one right now.”  I said, well that’s something mamas and daddies do in private.  “OK, we’ll go upstairs then!”  They meant us to make a baby right then, in the dining room.  I’m sure that’s where some babies are made, but none of mine!  We decided just the next day to tell them, and one said, “You made one ALREADY?!?”  Now they think we’re having a baby because they told us to!

*Maybe I will get to have the non-interventive birth I always wanted.  (Twins are a crazy birth experience, and Greta was a c-sec.)

-I am so done with baby stuff.  Bouncers, bottles, toys, gates.  We had a lot less of it than some families, but it’s pervasive.  Now it’s going to creep back into my house.  I don’t worry too much though.  Most anything, if I don’t want to let it in, doesn’t have to come back.  Babies need a lot less than they get, in terms of stuff.

*What I’m not worried is the baby itself.  We’ve got that part down.  Nighttime nursing, diaper changing, those tasks don’t scare me.  Wear the baby, sleep with the baby, sing to the baby, occasionally give it a bath, that’s all good.  I’m a lot more apprehensive about the year we have 7, 7, 4, and 1 year olds.

We’re adjusting.  We’re accepting.  Hopefully I won’t regret later announcing this in a less than 100% positive way for the whole world to see.  I’m being honest.  It’s hard for Heather not to be honest.  I think that’s why I haven’t told many yet.  I’m working up to an honestly positive spin on this.  A new baby.  A fourth baby.  I think it may be just the blessing, just the balance our family needed.  Exciting indeed!

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