It's hard to know where to start after a nearly three-year hiatus. Life got really busy there for a while, and I realized that I don't like blogging about things I haven't figured out yet. I plan to talk about it all someday, but the short version is that my kids and my marriage needed absolutely all of my attention. We find ourselves in a different season of life these days, so different that we even decided to have another baby. I'm nine weeks and four days pregnant today(11 weeks 4 days if you count like the doctors), and I want to start keeping some records about this pregnancy. It's been so different from my pregnancies with the boys in every possible way, and I want to remember.
First and foremost, we planned this pregnancy. Aaron has always wanted at least four kids, but after having the boys I honestly felt like I could never do it again. Not the pregnancy or birth part, the intensity part. I felt like kind of a wimp sometimes, but then people(including my sisters) would tell me that my oldest child was more work than all five of their children put together, and I found that reassuring. I didn't stress or agonize over having "only" two kids, because our days were so full-on all the time that there really wasn't room for anything else. I felt like I was living on the front lines and I could only deal with what was in front of me right that minute, and the idea of taking on more of anything seemed absolutely impossible. In the words of Jim Gaffigan, "just imagine you're drowning, and then someone hands you a baby."
Well, I don't feel like I'm drowning anymore. I spent a lot of time figuring out what Jack needed to flourish, and while it literally took years of appointments and therapies and trial-and-error, we finally have a protocol more or less dialed in for him and I'm thrilled to report that he's doing a pretty good job of winning at life. As things started improving for Jack and we were able to lower the DEFCON level of daily life, Aaron and I started talking about the possibility of another baby. I kept thinking that if we ever had another baby, I would wait until I really really wanted one. So we talked about it and I waited for Baby Fever to strike, and I even considered becoming a doula because I like supporting women and babies so much, but I kept waiting and no Baby Fever was forthcoming. I still don't have it, and that's okay. I'm just not a Baby Fever person.
What I do have is a desire for a bigger family, and there's no getting around the fact that to have a bigger family, you have to make some babies. I don't regret the break. Jack will be 10 and Matteas will be a few weeks shy of 8 by the time this baby is born, which is a pretty big gap. I can't imagine going through what we've been through the past few years with a baby to take care of, and a pregnancy at almost any other time would have felt really overwhelming. Now, I feel prepared and happy. Joyful. I did not feel like that with my first two pregnancies, and even though I love my boys more than anything in life, I'm so grateful for the opportunity to experience such a well-supported pregnancy this time around. I had to skip a lot of the fun stuff with my first pregnancy, and this feels kind of like a do-over only better because now I'm older and wiser. I've been buying myself cozy sweaters and leggings, taking naps when I need them, appreciating the fact that Aaron does the dishes every night, and taking long baths while reading pregnancy magazines(which, by the way, have vastly improved in the eight years since I've been pregnant). With the recent and miraculous addition of Diclegis to my self-care regimen, I'm not even nauseated anymore. Sleepy, but not nauseous.
So that's where life is at right now. I have my first appointment with my midwives on Monday, which is one of my favorite parts of being pregnant. Very soon I hope to have a more substantial baby bump, so that I actually look pregnant and not like I have a tiny beer belly. People get more excited about baby bumps than beer bellies.