Friday, June 29, 2012

Movin' on up!

The scale, that is! :) James had his weigh-in this morning, and I admit I have been a little nervous about it all week. Last week's lack of weight gain was such a surprise to me (in fact, I had stood on our scale holding him/not holding him and we had thought he had gained...), that even though he had been eating well and we had weighed him at home, I had little confidence going into the appointment.

Turns out he gained 6 ounces this week and is 8 lbs. even! It's not his birth weight (which was 8 lbs. 4 ozs.), but our doctor just wanted to see significant gain and was happy. He said I can be more relaxed about feeding him - I was striving for every 2 hours during the day and every 3 at night, and can now just feed him when he's hungry. Granted, it will still probably be around the same amount of feedings, but I feel so freed by this! And it's been really hard to wake him for one of the night feedings, so dare I hope for a 4 hour stretch one of these nights soon?!

And see, James is pretty pleased with his weight gain too! This is at the pediatrician's right after the weight check:

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Worth the wait

Truth :)

Thank you Melissa for the onesie!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Growth spurt?

So I'm guessing (hoping?) James has begun his 3 week growth spurt today. Since 6:30 this morning he has been feeding every 1.5 hours with one significant nap that gave us a 3 hour break. That sounds like a growth spurt, right, even if it's a few days before he's 3 weeks?? It's just hard because I feel like I can't say for sure until after the fact when he's back to "normal," because what if this is his new normal?

On the upside, I am hoping that this is helping him pack on some weight before his weigh in on Friday!

And, a cute picture just for fun :)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Our birth story

I am still amazed and thankful that I was ever pregnant and that I gave birth. And not only did I give birth, I gave birth to James, the sweetest and cutest son who is more than I could have even dreamed of.

His birth was full of ups and downs, but in the end I felt like we were triumphant - the underdogs who made it against the odds!

I started leaking amniotic fluid at 2:30am on Friday, June 8. I wasn't really sure if I was peeing or if it was my water, so I went back to sleep and knew it would keep happening if it were indeed my water. Looking back, I am so thankful I went to sleep, and amazed that I was able to! I woke up again at 5:30am to some wetness but no leaking, and at 7:30am with more leaking. By then I was pretty sure it was my water and told my husband.

I called the hospital and they said to come in soon, but we didn't need to rush. My husband went in to work for a couple hours to tie up loose ends, and I showered, got ready, and tidied up the house. During this time the little trickles had turned into bigger gushes, and I was convinced it was my water.

We made it to the hospital by 10:30am. A nurse checked to see if it was amniotic fluid, and when she confirmed that it was I started bawling tears of happiness - it was time!! We were going to meet our boy that day or the next!! I started at 2cm and 0% effaced.

My water had been broken for eight hours but I had not started contracting. My hospital does not have the "you must deliver in 24 hours rule," but they don't want to risk infection and let you go too long. Because my body did not go into labor on its own at this point, I essentially had to be induced. This was a little disappointing since I knew it could be a longer labor, and the likelihood of a c-section was a little higher.

They started me on cervadil, and at about 11:30am I felt my first painful contraction - which is the time I count my labor as starting. My husband and I walked all over the hospital and grounds (always taking the stairs :) and hoped my body would kick in and start laboring. We were laughing and pretty relaxed, although the pain of the contractions grew significantly pretty quickly.

They wanted to monitor my contractions and the baby's heart rate, so I was hooked up to wireless monitoring. We were still able to walk around, but we had to stay in the halls of labor and delivery. During all of this time I continued to have frequent largish gushes of fluid, so I kept having to go back to the room to get a new diaper. They mean it when they say you will be surprised how much fluid there is!

At around 4:30, my water completely broke (thankfully I was in the bathroom for that flood!), and the nurse checked to see if the cervadil was still in. It wasn't, and I was 3cm and 50% effaced. It felt like decent progress but nothing to write home about. The doctor said I had been contracting too hard and close together from the medication for this stage of labor, which can put distress on the baby. She decided not to re-insert the cervadil or start pitocin to see if my body would "kick in" on it's own. I was still contracting and in a lot of pain so I was hopeful it was.

At 8:00pm I was in a lot of pain. I asked to be checked because I wanted to wait until I was in active labor (4-5cm) before getting the epidural, and I was still only 3-4cm. I got in the tub hoping it would would ease the pain (I had heard amazing stories about the tub!), but it didn't work for me. After being in there only about 15 minutes I got out and asked for the epidural.

Around the same time the doctor decided to start the pitocin since I had only progressed maybe 1 cm in 4 hours. The anesthesiologist came really quickly and I was so ready! However, the minutes dragged on and the pokes in my back continued until he announced he couldn't find the gap in my spine and he'd "never had this problem in somebody young." He ended up making 3 different attempts, and as I sat there hunched over in pain I started to panic. Almost an hour later he gave up, did some other kind of anesthesia that would "hopefully help," and left me there... still in pain. I did feel some relief but not much.

This was the lowest point of my labor. My husband was mad and thought the the anesthesiologist was incompetent - and he had hated seeing my spinal area poked over and over. I was still in a lot of pain and shocked that I couldn't have an epidural - normally you hear about being flexible in your birth plan because you may end up wanting an epidural, but I've never heard of somebody not being able to get one! I had not prepared myself for natural labor, I didn't want to feel the pain, I was still only 4cm and felt like I had a long way to go, and they had just started the pitocin which I knew would make the labor that much worse. It depressed me just anticipating the pain ahead.

Even worse, though, was the fact that I felt like a c-section was a likely outcome for me - induction, not progressing much, water had been broken for a long time, etc. Normally women have an epidural for a c-section, but I couldn't. We had asked the anastheseologist if I could have a spinal if it came to a c-section, and he said no - it was administered the same way. So now I laid there in pain, imagining having a c-section and being put under general anesthesia - no hearing his first cry or seeing him. I laid in bed and cried. A few family members came in at this point, and I didn't even talk to them. All I could do was lay there. I felt like giving up.

My doctor came in sometime after this and I could tell she felt bad for me. She told the nurse to offer me some IV drugs to help, but I don't want those because I had heard they weren't super effective and got to the baby. I asked my doctor if she thought I would be able to deliver va.ginally, and she said she didn't know but if we had to go with plan B (c-section) we would have a healthy baby, so try not to worry about it. In my low state I felt like she was essentially telling me I'd probably need a c-section, and cried that much more.

Around midnight (4 hours after the failed epidural), another anastheseologist walked in my room. We were shocked because we had been told the other one was the only one in the hospital that night, so we jokingly call the second one the miracle doctor who just appeared out of nowhere. He said he had been called in to replace his colleague, and he had heard I had an unsuccessful epidural. He wanted to see if he could get it, and he got it on the first try!! Oh sweet relief!!

I was then able to sleep for the next 4 hours. They kept increasing/ decreasing/ stopping the pitocin at various points to find the balance of keeping the contractions from being too hard/ close together but also helping me to progress. At 3:00am they checked and I was 8cm, and at 4:00am I was 9cm! At that point I got hopeful I was going to dilate, and started thinking I might be pushing by 7:00am or so. At least I hoped.

But as the nurse kept checking, I stayed at 9cm for a really long time. She said the baby was still quite high, and that he was sunny side up based on how his head felt, which could be preventing him from being able to drop all the way and trigger my body to fully dilate. So from 4:00am-10:00am, I laid on my sides - switching every half hour - to try to get him to turn. But it felt like another point added to the c-section side, because if he didn't drop/ I didn't fully dilate/ it was dangerous to deliver him sunny side up that would be where we would end up.

Thankfully I wasn't in pain all that time. We just kept praying and I tried to rest. I did think I felt him moving, and the nurse confirmed he was on his side at one point. Later she thought he was face down, and I just had a lip of a cervix left! Almost there! We also hoped he would drop down further so I wouldn't be pushing for 3 hours. As the morning progressed, I did feel an intense and uncomfortable urge to push. I kept telling the nurse, but when she checked that lip of cervix was still there. She said I could hit the button to increase the epidural, but I thought I might need that "urge to push" feeling to effectively push, so I held off.

At 10:00am, after what felt like an eternity waiting, it was time to push. He was still pretty high, so I knew we had a ways to go. I know it must be WAY more intense without the epidural, but even with it I was shocked by how uncomfortable/ painful the urges to push were and how hard it was to push! I guess I thought it would be easy with the epidural.

Pretty early during the pushing my doctor came in and felt my contraction and push. She commented to the nurse that my contractions weren't very strong and my push was not very effective. She increased the pitocin to get the contractions stronger, but as she left I yet again felt the c-section looming. But I was determined to improve my push and do the best I could.

I pushed for 2.5 hours. It sounds so cliche, but I couldn't have done it without my husband. It was so hard, but he really stepped up as my coach and encouraged me throughout. I also had an amazing nurse who really encouraged and guided me. Even still, I didn't believe I was going to deliver him until the nurse showed my husband his head. His head was there?! I pushed him down that far?! I was in happy shock!

The last bit is a blur. The pushing urge was so strong I had to push 4-5 times per contraction, even though the nurse had said to do 3 sets. Suddenly the doctor was in the room and they were setting up for delivery, but I was hardly aware of it because all I could focus on was pushing. And then, even more suddenly, he was out and lying on my chest. It was amazing and surreal! He was born at 12:32pm after 25 hours of labor.

My husband and I cried as I held him. We thanked God over and over. I still cry thinking about that sweet time. I cried when I said good-bye to my nurse because she had been such a cheerleader for me, and cried when we left the hospital to go home. Despite a number of lows, the overall experience is one I will cherish always. I am so thankful that I have a birth story to share and that my son is here!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

{two weeks}

From the two week mark, I look back on the first week and am amazed at how much we survived. :) I wrote about some last post, but I missed a few biggies: engorgement (oh my so painful!), sleep deprivation (to be expected but so much harder than imagined), and the postpartum hormones.

Giving birth, my own physical recovery, and caring for a newborn have all been so much more intense than I had imagined. Duh, right? I mean, of course it is challenging!! But I couldn't fathom how much so. Now that I have another week under my belt, I feel like I can be a little more reflective - and thankful - for surviving that first week. :)

In many ways the second week has been much easier. Our family help was gone (and very missed!:), but our church family started bringing us dinners 4x per week (SO appreciated!). We know our James better, can read his cues, and have established a bit of "the norm" - as much as you can when he is still unpredictable, at least. Most days I feel very content feeding him, which is what I feel like I do 24/7 at this point, and love kissing his sweet little face at any opportunity. I love having my husband home and am so thankful for his help and support!

Some highs and lows from the week:

*James is very much awake for a large part of the night. Our "routine" is that my husband stays up with him between the 9:00pm- 2am feeding, and then I am with him 2-7ish when we wake daddy up for morning cuddles (aka get up and help me with the baby). if we get him to sleep on any of those shifts we feel successful, and if we get him to sleep in the pack-n-play in our room - and all 3 of us sleep at the same time - we feel very successful indeed! That seems to happen about 50% of the time, and some nights we are too tired to even try. :)

* We ended up getting a SwaddleDesigns flannel blanket that has worked out perfectly! It is just the right size and he is such a content boy when he's all burrito-like in it. (sorry no link since I'm writing this from my phone, but there is a blue polka dot one on Amazon for around $15!)

* Other than not sleeping at night, James continues to be pretty mellow. If he does get upset, he is soothed by his swaddle, being rocked/ bounced, sucking on a finger, the sound of running water or the hair dryer, and eating, of course. :) The running water one is hilarious because he screams his little head off when we give him a sponge bath, but then we hold his head next to the faucet to rinse his hair and he is instantly calm, alert, and content. :)

* The "baby blues" have been very real for me. This has been the hardest part of my second week, and at around dinner time most nights I have completely lost it and became a sobbing mess. Most of the time there is nothing very tangible to attribute it to, and usually I just tell my husband I feel really bad and don't feel like myself. In these moments I second guess everything I am doing/ not doing as a mom, and it just feels like PMS x10. The "baby blues"care supposed to subside around two weeks postpartum - and I didn't have a melt down today - so hopefully things are looking up. I also notice I am more likely to have a melt down if I am especially tired, so I am trying to be more diligent about napping throughout the day.

* At James' first pediatrician appointment last week at 5 days old, he still weighed the same amount he did when he left the hospital (8lbs. 4ozs. at birth, 7lbs. 11ozs. at discharge). It had only been a few days and my milk had just come in, so the pediatrician wasn't concerned. This week James has been a fabulous eater, exceeding the amount of wet & dirty diapers recommended, looking satisfied after meals with milk dribbling down his cheek, etc. imagine my shock at his two week appointment yesterday when the nurse put him on the scale and he STILL weighed 7lbs. 11ozs!! What?! Thankfully the pediatrician was very reassuring and says he has an intuitive sense that James is doing just fine and will put on weight by next week. I have a bunch of theories about the lack of gain (I was pumped full of fluids for probably 20 hours of my labor and very swollen afterwards - maybe his birth weight was inflated, maybe he will be long and lean like his dad - he did grow a 1/4", etc), and my mom instinct is that James is thriving. However, my main and all consuming job right now is to feed him, and finding out we have been "unsuccessful" was very discouraging and made it hard not up worry. I am now feeding him every 2 hours during the day and 3 at night unless he is hungry earlier (was doing 2-3 before based on hunger cues).

* Physically I am feeling almost back to normal. I still have a pooch for a belly but I don't think I look pregnant anymore. :) My only continued pain has been a sore left hip/ lower back, which seems random but I assume his from stretching ligaments and stuff while pregnant / delivering. Thankful to be feeling well this week!

* By the end of this week James has become SO much more alert! I love his cute little expressions as he just stares at our faces or takes in his surroundings. On his two week birthday I put a black and white dangly toy in front of him and he stared at it as though mesmerized! And I know it probably 'coincidence' like it is when he 'smiles' right now, but he did bat at the toy a number of times.

* James went out to lunch with us this week to celebrate our 7th anniversary. I actually got dressed up and wore make up. It took two outfit changed for James to get out the door, but we made it and the restaurant gave us a secluded table on the patio that was perfect. James started to fuss in his car seat, but I held him and he slept the entire lunch. Such new adventures for all of us!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

{one week}

It is hard to believe my little love is one week old today! In fact, a week ago at this time he was 25 minutes old, laying on my chest, and my husband and I were bawling our eyes out at the sight of our miracle baby. Makes me tear up just thinking about it.

Speaking of tears, my postpartum hormones have been crazy. Thankfully most of my tears have been the sentimental good kind of weepy, but I have had a few over the top meltdowns as well. So much has happened in a week I don't even know where to begin!

*So far his temperament has seemed to be on the easy end of the spectrum. When he gets upset he has been easy to console - he just needed to eat, get a diaper change, be rocked and shushed, or be swaddled. I feel like there has been little actual crying this week.

* That said, the most difficult times for us in the first few days were our nursing sessions. He would clearly be hungry, latch on, but then get really frustrate, scream, and pull away. We would spend a lot of time comforting him and trying to get him to eat, and I was getting really stressed out that we might miss a feeding if he got too upset. Then on Wednesday I got a home visit from a wonderful nurse who was helpful and encouraging in many areas, but especially with breast feeding. James has a short frenulum (the flap of skin under the tongue) which can make latching on and getting enough food challenging, apparently. We knew about this at the hospital, but all the nurses there thought he had a great latch and strong suck, so we figured his frenulum wasn't as issue. But this nurse thought that might be the cause of his frustration, so she gave me a nipple shield to try and it has made a HUGE difference!!! Nursing has been a breeze now that I use it. (By the way, per our pediatrician we are going to go to an ENT and have his frenulum cut to help with nursing and avoid potential speech problems down the road)

* I love my squishy little newborn, and already cried that he is getting older. Yesterday when he was 6 days old I realized we would start saying his age in weeks soon and got all weepy. His cuddles, warmth on my chest , squeaks and grunts, and even his little cry are too precious.

* He is a happy little guy when he is swaddled, and the two times we have gotten a 2-3 hour stretch of sleep were when he stayed swaddled. However, I kid you not, my less than a week old baby kept busting out of his swaddle! The Aiden & Anais blankets seemed too stretchy - he could kick a lot in them and wake himself up. Most of the other blankets we have already seem too small for him, so we can't get them snug and tucked in enough... So he busts out. We have a miracle blanket that I thought would do the trick, but the legs are looser and he just stays awake/ wakes himself up kicking. We ended up going to a fabric store and buying a big piece of flannel, and had some success with it last night. I also have a swaddle me that was given as a gift that we haven't tried. Any suggestions?

* The first night in the hospital, James choked on some amniotic stuff that the nurses said was somewhat common in the first 24 hours. I happened to be awake and saw it, but I didn't know what to do and started screaming at my husband to call the nurses. Thy heard me screaming and came in before we could even call, and they suctioned him and he started breathing again. Seeing him trying to breathe but unable to - and feeling like I don't know what to do - scared me so bad. I followed the nurses out into the hall sobbing as they took him to the nursery for evaluation, trying to see if he was really ok. One of them had to escort me back to our room and help calm me down. In the 3 hours he was in the nursery that night, my husband got in the twin hospital bed with me so I could be held. I still cry about it when I tell anybody, and am teary eyed as I write it here. Needless to say, the nights have been really scary for me and I can't sleep because I feel like I need to watch him. One night I had the melt down of the century over how scary the nights are, and my husband and mother in law took turns staying with him in the living room and brought him to me to eat so I could get some sleep. That did help - I don't think I had slept but a few hours in those first 4 days, and every successful night calms me a little more.

* My little love makes the absolute cutesy faces! I could just look at him all day.

* Life is SO different now. I feel incredible joy at this new season of life that we have entered in to, but the amount of change and learning that is happening is also overwhelming at times!

* I love feeling like me confidence as a mom is growing. From how I hold him, to relaxing during nursing sessions, to being able to calm him... I see myself growing. I keep telling him I learning and he's learning, so we will have to be patient with each other. :) by the way, I really feel like he knows my voice, and just hearing me talk is soothing to him!

* He loves to suck (haha), and I think we are going to end up giving him a pacifier at the two week mark (our pediatrician said to wait 2-3 weeks). I was not very opinionated on the subject, but after seeing how calm he is when we give him a finger to suck on... I just think he will be so happy, as will mom and dad. :)

* Family help has been HUGE! I know we would have done it, but I can't imagine how we would have made it trough this week without family staying with us cooking, doing laundry, an being extra pairs of loving hands with the baby.

Those are some highlights of our week that I can think of... James just finished nursing and I'm going to try to get a couple hours sleep!

Saturday, June 9, 2012


James Stephen
Born 06.09.12 at 12:32pm
8 lbs. 4 ozs. and 20.5" long

All three of us are doing well but tired after a 25 hour labor. So thankful to God for our beautiful son and a successful delivery! More details to come, but I will say we made it without a C-section which I am thankful for.

Friday, June 8, 2012

My water broke!!!

Eek! It's time! It's time!

Last night at 2:30 I woke up and felt a small leak of fluids. I definitely wondered if it was my water breaking because it seemed unlikely that I would pee myself laying down and sleeping. However, when I went to the bathroom nothing else happened and I did have to pee, so I started doubting. Our birth class instructor had said if you're water is leaking it will keep happening, so I went back to bed to wait and see.

On the way back to bed I did have another tiny leak of fluid, so I changed my underwear and got in bed. I went back to sleep expecting contractions to start or more water to leak but nothing happened. I awoke again at 5:30 to pee, and after peeing felt more wetness. Was that still pee?? It was such a small amount - more like dampness and a small wet spot on my underwear - that I just wasn't sure.

I went back to sleep and woke at 7:30am, and again felt wetness when I went to the bathroom. I called labor and delivery and described what was happening, and they said to come in and get it checked, but as long as I felt the baby move I didn't need to rush. My husband went into work to wrap a couple things up, I showered,tidied up the house, and ate some cereal. During that time I experienced two larger gushes of fluid so I became fairly certain it was indeed my water!

We got to the hospital around 10:30am and they confirmed my water did break! We are having this baby!! I started dilated at a 2 with the cervix low and soft, but not effaced (still thick) Unfortunately I had not started contracting since my water broke, so I am essentially being induced to at least get things going hopefully. They inserted cervadil at 11:30am, and I did start having mild contractions pretty soon afterwards. Praying my body kicks in to gear and gets going! My hospital does not have a time limit per se on when the baby needs to be born after the water breaks, so at least we don't have that time pressure.

Soooo excited and thankful I can hardly stand it!!!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Dream due dates and waiting

Today is the first of my "dream due dates" -'s like 6+6=12. :) Since the day is half over and I feel zero labor symptoms, I don't think he's going to be born today (which is perfectly fine). Other dates I like are 06.09.12 (counting by 3's) and 06.12.12. I generally like the even dates before the 12th, too. I would definitely be happy if he came any day, but it's been fun to dream.

It's been a tougher week emotionally. Thanks for understanding that these last weeks of pregnancy are psychologically tough. I don't know why this last bit of waiting has made me feel crazy! To add the hormones and struggle with patience, my husband has also been working a lot. He has been part of a huge six month project that, of course, is ending this month and I have been nervous about the timing all along. He is planning to take 3 weeks off once the baby comes (which I am so thankful for!) and his work knows this, but he wants to plow through a ton of work before hand. We're trying to find balance and compromise, but it has made me extra emotional. I want the baby to come not only because I am excited to meet him, but also so I can have my husband back! It's just difficult timing. :(

But I rest in the knowledge that the Lord knew and planned the this amazing pregnancy, the timing of my husband's work project, and has already determined the date of our son's birth.

A prayer for our son today:
For you have been my hope, Sovereign Lord,
    my confidence since my youth.
From birth I have relied on you;
    you brought me forth from my mother’s womb.
    I will ever praise you.
I have become a sign to many;
    you are my strong refuge. 
Psalm 71:5-7

Monday, June 4, 2012

38 week OB appointment

I just got home from my OB appointment and am thankful to report another uneventful one. (I didn't even write about the 37 week one because it was only a few days ago, I didn't see the doctor, and there was nothing to even say about it). I would rather have uneventful than discover anything concerning, so I am trying to be thankful and patient! I'm measuring at 36 weeks now that he's dropped (I was always exactly on track until he did), and his heart rate was in the normal range. I did get a brief ultrasound, but he wasn't facing out and my doctor wouldn't guess his size, so even that was uneventful.

My OB doesn't do cervical checks - at least not yet. This is probably a good thing because I really do think it would make me crazy thinking I was either going to go into labor soon or discouraged that I wouldn't....even though from what I have read the state of your cervix does not indicate much in terms of when labor will actually happen. That said, I felt a little sad leaving the appointment today because I got the sense that my doctor doesn't think it will happen any time soon, and she made a point to tell me to schedule my next two appointments (which I actually already had scheduled). I think deep down I was hoping for some info at my appointment today pointing to labor, although I don't even know what that would be. But instead I left feeling like I should get comfortable for the long haul here. I feel silly even writing this because I am not even that close to my due date, there's no way to know when labor will start, etc, etc, etc... but I'm just a little blue about it right now.

Yesterday morning I woke up at about 5:30am experiencing cramping in my lower abdomen. I have had a teensy bit of mild cramping off and on in general (very minor - like a 2 on the pain scale, and some days none at all), but this was enough to wake me up. I laid there wondering...could this be the start of labor?? I stayed awake and did feel some strong tightening of my belly come and go in waves, but it was not consistent and there was no more pain. So I went back to sleep, and nothing else happened. I guess these are just the experiences of my body getting ready for labor, but my body sure does try to trick me! :)

A few of you have asked if I will post when I do go into labor, and I will! Thankfully I can post from my phone so I can at least give you a quick head's up that we're at the hospital, and also announce his arrival.

Friday, June 1, 2012

{38 weeks}

38 weeks

Size of baby: leek (approx. 19.75" and 6.8 lbs.)

Total Weight Gain: +35 lbs
Continuing symptoms: slight nose congestion, back ache if I stand too long, acid reflux (less this week!), aches, pains, and discomforts (especially while sleeping), infrequent but increasing Braxton hicks (experiencing more and sometimes I feel a little crampy with them!), charlie horse leg cramps at night, really tired, frequent urination, stretch marks, snoring, skin tags, hot
New symptoms this week: Numbness in my left hand at times (particularly my pinky)
Maternity Clothes: Still feel the most comfortable in dresses, but I did try to add some variety into my wardrobe and managed to squeeze into my maternity jeans...

Sleep: I haven't experienced any insomnia this week (yay!) and the acid reflux has decreased. However, I am getting up 2-3 times a night to go to the bathroom and am so stiff and sore. I feel like it takes me five minutes to roll over! And my sleep in general feels more restless. But I can't complain - I'm sleeping decent overall.
What I'm Eating: My appetite feels relatively normal.
Cravings: Yeah, still ice cream :)
Movement: I think he is big enough that I really can tell what body parts are where most of the time now. He pushes his bottom out of one side and stretches his legs out on the other and it feels so strong! His legs also kick upwards sometimes, too. He does flip from side to side, although tends to prefer keeping has back/ bottom on my right side more often.

Labor Signs:
He has dropped and is head down (yay!). I really think he dropped at 36 weeks and 2 days because his movements felt lower that day. I am also feeling some pressure, although I certainly don't feel like there is a bowling ball between my legs. I just feel heaviness. Experiencing more Braxton Hicks and even occasional crampiness. It's funny that this is the one time in life when cramps are good and exciting. :)

Special pregnancy moments: It's JUNE!! The month we have been waiting for!! I really was hoping to have a June baby, and since I can't go more than two weeks past my due date he will be born in June. It is currently the month of my baby's birth - eek! :)

Loving this "any day now" territory and all its hopeful anticipation! However, as my husband put it, we now feel like we're in a bit of a time warp now and he will never come. We've been waiting a LONG time for him (9 months or 4 years depending on how you count!), but these last few weeks look endless. We are praying we don't get impatient!

There were/ are quite a few pregnant women in my church expecting at the end of May through mid-June. As a friend put it, it feels like we were all lined up waiting for our turn to dive off of a diving board, and now suddenly I am nearing the front! So far, ALL of them have had their babies before their due date which is surprising to me. Part of me wonders if that leaves me to be the one to help the statistical odds and and go PAST my due date - oy! I know it doesn't exactly work like that, but seriously stop having your babies early! :) I think there is only one left who was ahead of me due June 9, and one due a couple days after me...

Counting down: 2 weeks until my due date, and 4 weeks (at most) until this boy is in my arms!