Mothering is Ministry

4 weeks left until we get to hold our baby girl, unless she decides to come early. Which at this rate, that may just be a possibility. We went to the baby doctor today and everything is still going great. Her heart rate is in the 130s still, my blood pressure is perfect, weight gain is perfect. I’m 35 weeks, and she’s measuring 36 weeks. We wound up having to be sent to the hospital after the doctor appointment because baby girl wasn’t moving as much as she normally does, but all is well. She looked great on the monitor and was perfect for the ultrasound. We got to see our baby girl’s face, and she is oh so perfect. We go every week now to the doctor, instead of every two.
Now since I have told you about the doctor appointment, I’ll catch you up on the pregnancy feels I’ve been having. I’ve been super emotional lately, and in a lot of pain. I can’t stand up longer than 10-15 minutes without both of my legs going numb. I am so hot constantly that I can barely do anything. This Tennessee heat is ridiculous right now, and it doesn’t help that our house only has window a/c units. Most of the time now I stay inside, and just watch tv or read, since it’s hard to do much of anything else.
Sunday, the 23rd, I turned 23. It was a pretty good day. It was super pretty outside, and I got to spend the day with Dustin, and my family. We also got to see his mom, sister, and nephew. We went to church then my parents and brother took us out to eat to Mexican. I couldn’t eat much, baby girl was kicking at my rib cage and making me not really want to eat, but it was still really good, and we had a great time. Dustin and I watched a movie on Netflix that night before falling asleep. We used to have movie nights all the time, but since he works nights now, it’s hard to do that. It made me so happy to be able to just relax in his arms and watch a movie. Then Monday, we went to Shoney’s for breakfast for my birthday, then walked a trail at the park. I was very proud of myself for walking the trail, and I was still feeling pretty good afterwards.
As you all know, I’ve been doing a lot of Bible study lately. Yesterday as I was doing the Bible study for our Sunday school lesson, I came across in my Bible some cool verses and information about breastfeeding. (Dustin bought me an awesome women’s study Bible for my wedding present when we got married).
-Breastfeeding is regarded as a satisfying bonding period between mother and child. Isaiah 66:11 “That you may feed and be satisfied with the consolation of her bosom. That you may drink deeply and be delighted with the abundance of her glory.”
-Breastfeeding requires a special commitment on the part of a mother to her child. Isaiah 49:15 “Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, Yet I will not forget you.”
-Weaning of the child-usually by the age of three-was an occasion for celebration, a milestone in the child’s life. (Genesis 21:8) “So the child grew and was weaned. And Abraham made a great feast on the same day that Isaac was weaned.” It was after weaning that a child was expected to receive the teaching of knowledge and doctrine. (Isaiah 28:9) “Whom will he teach knowledge? And whom will he make to understand the message? Those just weaned from milk? Those just drawn from the breast?”
-Breastfeeding was believed by many to be a natural , though not absolute, method of birth control since during the postpartum period, nursing tends to suppress a woman’s ovulation.
Also in my Bible, in the book of Isaiah, there is a little note that caught my attention. I am copying it straight out of my bible. I have a NKJ Women’s Study Bible, like I mentioned before.
More than a job or responsibility, mothering is ministry. Most assuredly it takes work. It means sacrifice. Children to not come off an assembly line , nor are they the by-product of an impersonal biological process: they are to be lovingly nurtured by their mothers(2 Timothy 1:3-5) Mothers divide time among their children but multiply their love for all their children. To this they add the care of the home, often subtracting many extras in order to do so. When Isaiah the prophet searched for an illustration of God’s constant love for His people, the best example he could find was a new baby’s mother(Isaiah 49:15). Mothers have enduring love that even the most trying circumstances or rebellious child cannot dim. As a mother lets go of her own life for the sake of her child, she is reminded of the depth and height and breadth of God’s love for her, and in a unique way she experiences the true joy of motherhood. This is a truth that will transform any suffering or sacrifice into reward and joy(1 John 3:16). God has a plan for mothers(Exodus 2:1-10). The high calling is an all-consuming task: in the morning, you can read God’s word to your child; at mealtime you are to give attention to meeting physical needs; as you are outside, you can teach your child about the beauty of creation; at bedtime you can pray for your child and give assurance. The reward is worth the effort.
Godly mothers are the nation’s greatest treasure, the Lord’s best helpers, and the most blessed among women.

I know that this blog has been a lot to read this time, but I have had a lot on my mind the past couple of weeks, and that passage just really got to me on breastfeeding and motherhood. I hope you all enjoyed it as much as I did, and do. God has blessed me with so much, and I thank him everyday for everything he has done for me and my family. Thanks to everyone who took the time to read this, and please comment what you think.

BNH

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Late night contemplation 

It’s one in the morning and I am still awake.  I cannot get comfortable at all. When I finally get comfortable on one side , I can’t breath and have to attempt to roll over to the other side. #pregnancyproblems

This post may be super scattered,  seeing as how late it is and my mind is half awake.  

We went to the baby doctor yesterday morning.  Her heart rate is in the 130s. She’s measuring a little bit bigger now.  She’s dropped and her head is in the birth canal.  My cervix is still closed , though.  Doctor said I will just have to pretty much deal with the pain until she’s ready to make her arrival.  So now it’s just a waiting game.  Me and Dustin are ready anytime.  We’re super excited to meet our baby girl.  And I’m super ready to not have this pain anymore. 

Oh , so since we got home from the doctors office , our dog , siel , has been constantly by my side.  Sniffing at my legs and stomach.  She’s never done that the whole pregnancy .  I was told dogs can since when labor is near.  I wonder how true that is.. 

I’ve been have crazy vivid dreams of going into labor.  They seem so real.  It’s like when I wake up , I feel like if actually happened.  All this stuff going on has me thinking hopefully our baby girl will be here soon.  Also , I may just be psyching myself out.  Dustin kept telling me this evening to relax.  He knows I have a lot of stuff on my mind.  I can’t help it.  I try to relax , but it’s just not happening. 

My 23rd birthday is next Sunday. Dustin asked me what I wanted.  I told him I couldn’t think of anything.  I guess that’s a sign of growing up.  I have everything I want , and need.  I pretty much just want to get stuff for Elizabeth.  So if anyone is planning on getting me anything for my birthday , just get like hospital stuff,  box of diapers ,  box of wipes ,  lotion , baby wash , toys. Stuff like that .  Stuff that doesn’t expire that will help us out.  

Our little dog, ava, is asleep beside me in the bed and is snoring louder than Dustin. But she’s so cute.  I love all of our fur babies.  

Well , I guess that’s all for now.  My mind is slowly shutting off , and my back and left shoulder are bothering me for some reason , maybe it’s the way I’m sitting.  So , bye for now.  Maybe I’ll actually write a better post tomorrow or sometime soon.

BNH

Braxton Hicks and Stormy Days

 

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I am absolutely in love with summer days when it’s sunny one minute, and stormy the next.  Especially when it’s just a lazy day at home with my husband and fur babies.  Today is one of those days, except for the fact that all morning since I have woke up I have been having Braxton hicks contractions.  They are staying it seems about an hour apart.  But goodness gracious.  I’ve gotten some housework done though today.  All of our laundry is done, dishes are done, and supper is picked out.  I’ve been doing good at keeping our living room and kitchen cleaned.  The other day I sanitized my breast pump, and all of Elizabeth’s bottles.  I’ve had such a great little mini vacation with Dustin, but he goes back to work tonight and I’m so sad.  It sucks not having him here at night.

I’ve been doing a lot of reading, and a lot of writing lately.  It keeps me calm and relaxed.  I’ve been using essential oils a lot, too.  Right now in my diffuser I have tea tree and lemongrass.  One of my fur babies seems to love it, she had fallen asleep on the couch arm beside the table that my diffuser is on. Lol.

This weekend was pretty good.  Sunday we went to church, then after church my daddy did our maternity pictures(I will be posting some) and then my parents took us out to eat.  Monday we went to my parents house for a small cookout and to shoot guns.  That was a lot of fun.  Yesterday, Dustin took me on a date.  We went on a picnic at the park and sat by the waterfall.  After we ate, we waded around in the water for a little while before we decided to go home.  When we got home, we just laid around and watched a movie and some shows on Netflix.  I know yesterday was the fourth of July, but one of our dogs is terrified of fireworks, so we stayed home because people were shooting them off all around us.  She was in Dustin’s lap most of the night.  She’s also terrified of thunderstorms, so that’s probably why the fireworks scared her so bad.

Today we are, like I said, having pretty much a lazy day since he has to go back to work tonight.  Playing video games, watching Netflix, etc.  I’ve been contemplating working on my writing more, and thinking about taking some free online classes.  I really want to write a novel.  I need to eventually get my printer from my parent’s house.  I used to write constantly.  When I was in high school, I had like 200 some odd pages in a book, but I didn’t like it so I threw it away.  I would work on it in school, and when I would get home I would type it out on my computer.  I want to get back into it.  That’s my dream, and Dustin wants so bad for me to follow it.  It’s just so hard sometimes to get motivated to write.  That’s why I started this blog, to help me get back into writing.  So far it’s been working, but I still have writer’s block when it comes to writing fiction.  It’s like I just go completely blank when I try to think about stuff to write about.

Thank you so much for the comments everyone left me on my last blog.  It helps so much!  I didn’t realize how much stuff that the hospital actually gives you to take home.  I thought you had to bring all of your stuff.  We go back to the baby doctor next Wednesday.  I will be 33 weeks and 4 days.  It’s getting so much closer.  I feel like I’ve been doing really well at watching what I eat, and Dustin helps me a lot.  I guess I will see when we go back what the doctor says.  She’s been so active, and she loves listening to music.  She loves it when Dustin puts his hand on my belly and talks to her.

Again, feel free to comment!

BNH

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Planning for Labor.

32 weeks tomorrow.  Excited? Check.  Scared? Check.  Overwhelmed? Double check.

So 2 days into my barely any sugar diet, and that’s all I crave.  All I want is a blizzard from Dairy Queen, and a chocolate chip frappe from McDonald’s.  I’m going to fight it, though.  I know it’s not healthy for me, but it’s so hard.  Sweets is the only thing I’ve been craving since I’ve been pregnant, and now that’s the one thing I can’t have.  😦  But it’s gotten me cooking more home cooked meals.  Tonight we are having chili with bacon in it (per Dustin’s request).  I feel like a whale.

So, to the title of this blog, planning for labor.  We already have our birth plan figured out, and we’ve already talked to our doctor about it.  Now it’s time for our hospital bags.  Too early?  I don’t think so.  Especially not as much as I’ve been nesting.  (It’s getting bad, trust me.)  I have her diaper bag completely packed, and I’m almost done with mine and Dustin’s bag.  I only need to invest in a few more things for our bag.

Elizabeth’s Bag:

Car seat(DUH!)

Swaddle blanket

Receiving blanket

To go set of shampoo, lotion, baby powder

Diapers

Wipes

Rattle

Socks

Mittens

2 onesies(one newborn, one 0-3 months)

Coming home outfit

A pair of leggings

Sleeper outfit

Diaper Rash Ointment

Pacifier

Bottle(I know I’m breastfeeding, this is just for pumping)

I think that’s all that I put in her diaper bag.  I’m not sure if that’s all I’ll need, or if it’s too much.  But I would rather be safe than sorry that I had too much instead of not enough.

Mine & Dustin’s Bag:

2 pairs of pajamas for me

A pair of pajamas for Dustin

Flip Flops

Nursing Bra

Robe

Nipple Cream for Nursing

Shampoo Kit

Extra Hair bows

Going Home Outfit(Leggings and T-shirt)

Going Home Outfit for Dustin

Socks & Boxers for Dustin

Chargers for phones

Pen & Notebook

Boppy Pillow

Toothbrushes & Toothpaste

Pads

Like I said, I’m not finished with mine and Dustin’s bag.  I’m not completely sure of what all to bring, seeing as how I’m not sure how long we will be there.  Dustin isn’t wanting much for him, he says he will come home to grab stuff if need be.  Any moms out there want to tell me what all they packed in their bag and baby’s diaper bag?  I would love all the information I can get.

We have decided on skin – to – skin right after she’s born, and delayed cord clamping.  We’re wanting people to text or call before they show up to visit.  No kissing on her hands or face.  ALWAYS wash hands as soon as entering the hospital room and before you hold her.  She’s mine and Dustin’s first born, so our preferences come before anyone else’s. I know I sound crazy, but like I said, she’s our first born.  My nerves are going crazy.  Only Dustin and the hospital staff will be in the room when I’m in labor.  We don’t want anyone to post anything on any social media sites until we announce her arrival first.  Visitors are welcome though.  Just let us know in advance.  I’m wanting to breast feed, and we want this time to bond with our baby girl.  Thanks in advance to everyone who acknowledges our wishes, and to everyone who is in our lives:)

Thanks to my amazing sister-in-law who gave me the idea for this blog.  It turned out (hopefully) better than I thought it would.  If anyone has any other ideas on what I should write about, just leave me a comment!

BNH

Raising Batgirl

31 weeks and 5 days into my first pregnancy.  Now things are getting tough.  Tougher than the beginning.  Middle of the second trimester it became easier, the sickness went away, I had so much more energy.  But now it’s slowly going away.  My energy dwindles day by day.  I’m still able to eat good.  My back hurts all the time, I can barely get out of bed in the mornings.  I get headaches super easily.  That’s what’s hard on me.  Anyone who knows me, knows that I am absolutely obsessed with reading.  Right now, when I read too long in one setting, my head starts hurting and my eyes start burning.  It’s such a depressing thing for me.

We had our baby doctor appointment today.  Blood pressure is perfect, my weight gain is perfect.  Her heart rate is now in the 130s, so it’s slowing down just a tad bit.  I’m measuring exactly 31 cm.  The only thing we are concerned about now is being able to do a normal vaginal delivery.  Reason being, I am 4’10” and Dustin is 6’4″.  When I was born, I weighed 8 pounds 4 ounce.  She’s concerned about that.  With me being so small, she wants me to completely cut out all sugar from my diet, so we can hopefully make sure that Elizabeth doesn’t get too big to where I can’t have a vaginal delivery.  I don’t care to have a caesarian section, but I don’t want to have to go through one if it can be avoided.  With Dustin working thirds and that being our only source of income right now, I don’t want to have to go through a C-section and have more of a recovery period.  Also, I really want to experience a vaginal labor.  So as of now, we’re thinking I may not be able to carry the full 40 weeks.  So I’m a mix bundle of emotions right now.

I just started my new breastfeeding book.  Ina May’s Guide To Breastfeeding.  I just finished the prologue, and I am already hooked and ready to learn as much as I can.  I know I just started, but I do highly recommend any soon to be mom that is thinking about breastfeeding to buy this book off of Amazon.  Right now, it’s only a little over $8, and I’d say it’s worth it.  I also have amazon prime right now, so I had two day free shipping.

We’re also having to decide on birth control, because we’re wanting to wait at least a year before we decide to start trying to conceive again.  My baby doctor recommended the copper IUD because it contains no hormones, and as soon as it’s removed, you can start trying to conceive that day.  I’m thinking that’s the one I want to decide on, but if anyone has any recommendations, please feel free to let me know.  I would love all the information I can get.  It seems like now since I’ve been pregnant, all I’ve been doing is researching stuff.

I know this was a shorter post than usual, but I’m still getting the hang of writing a blog.  I’m really enjoying it, I just need to get more followers.  I would love to hear what people want to read about, and what everyone thinks about what I have wrote about so far.

BNH.

8 months.

Today I am 31 weeks, the starting of 8 months.  Only 9 more weeks, give or take, until we get to meet our baby girl.  We are both so excited.  I still don’t seem to have many cravings, except for sweet foods.  Other than that, I can pretty much eat whatever.  She moves around constantly, and now I’m at that point where sleep is getting hard.  Last night while I was trying to sleep, first she got the hiccups, and she had them for quite a while.  Then when I laid up against Dustin’s back, she started pushing at him.  It’s so hard to roll over now, that changing positions is not fun, and I try not to do it too often.  As I’m writing this, she’s pushing out on my right side.  She normally stays toward my right rib cage.  She loves when daddy talks to her, and puts his hands on my stomach, she starts kicking now right away.  We go see the doctor on Wednesday, which I am so excited about.  We’ve got everything pretty much done, I just need to get a couple more things.  I have her diaper bag ready, I just need to get my hospital bag ready.  Last night, I ordered a breastfeeding book(I promise to tell you what I think about it), and a set of essential oils.  I also decided to get Amazon Prime.  I don’t know how much I’ll use it, but I’m hoping with Elizabeth here, it will come in handy with the 2 day free shipping.  I need to decide on which breast pump I’m going to get, because I am planning on going back to work part time after she’s about 2 months old.  The only things we really need now specifically for her are a crib mobile, bottle warmer, and a couple more toys.  I’d say she’s pretty much spoiled.  My cousin April bought her the outfit for her newborn pictures that I am absolutely obsessed with.  It’s a handmade Hello Kitty outfit.  I can’t wait to see her in it.  My mom got her a dress to go home from the hospital in, which is adorable.  After she’s home from the hospital, I’m going to make a shadow box for her bedroom wall.

Right now I am sitting at my kitchen table writing this, while Dustin is mowing our yard.  Then we are going to my parent’s house for a small cookout, before Dustin has to go to sleep, since he has to work this weekend.  I hate when he has to work on the weekends, but I’m so proud of him for doing everything he can for our little family.

I’ve been very interested in learning about essential oils.  Right now I have one diffuser, and three essential oils: breathe easy, happiness, and lemon.  I have 6 coming in on Monday that I ordered off Amazon.  They are: Eucalyptus, Lavender, Orange, Tea Tree, Lemongrass, and Peppermint.  I’m super excited on trying them.  I’ve been doing a lot of research, but anything anyone wants to tell me about them, please do.  I’d like to learn all that I can.  Maybe one day I will be able to purchase the Young Living set, but right now I’m not able to.

We had VBS at my church this past week and it was a lot of fun.  I learned a lot, too.  We had Dustin’s nephews.  JW, 3 years old and Tristan, 6 years old.  They seemed to really enjoy it.  I’m glad they did.  I will definitely be bringing Elizabeth next year, I can’t wait.  She will be around 10 months old when we do it next year.  I’m wanting to help teach again.  Maybe next year I will know more about it, and be able to do more.  I’m still a beginner when it comes to the Bible and God.  But I have a time allotted for bible study everyday, and it makes me feel so calm and at ease.  It’s just so hard for me to know where to start.  Doing VBS this week though, has helped me a lot.  It’s made me realize that I do want to learn as much as I can.  Before I always just slacked off, thinking it was no big deal.  But to me now, it’s a very big deal.  If I don’t pray before I go to sleep, I toss and turn all night.  I know God gave me Dustin, and he blessed us with our Elizabeth.

 

Until next time,

BNH.

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Always Be Thankful

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Me and Dustin are never ones to ask many people for help.  Yeah, if we NEED someone, we will ask our parents, or VERY close relatives.  But I’ve learned a very important lesson these past few months; let people help you, and always be thankful for the help you receive.  You never realize how hard things can get until you reach that point.

     As you know, me and Dustin have our baby girl on the way, and we just moved into a new house.  Well, new to us.  Anyways, we’ve lived in our house for 2 months, and it’s just now becoming our home.  Because of our family, friends, and church family, we’ve been able to get the things we have needed since we’ve moved in.  I never knew how much stuff we actually needed.

     As with us having our little girl on the way, everyone around us has been such a huge help.  She is so loved by everyone already.  If it wasn’t for everyone helping us, I don’t know how we would have gotten everything that we have now.  Dustin’s sister gave us a baby shower with our friends and family.  Our church family gave us a baby shower, too, just this passed weekend, and we are so blessed to have so many supportive people surrounding us.

     An update on baby girl:  she is doing great.  She is very active, constantly sitting in my ribcage.  The past couple of days, it feels like she’s been doing cartwheels in my stomach.  The heat of the summer has already been getting to me pretty bad.  Today I’ve been doing  a lot of work on the house, and I got too hot.  It felt like I was never going to cool off.  Finally I did though.  Dustin has been such a huge help the past few days, I am so thankful for him.  Somedays I feel like I don’t tell him enough how much I appreciate him.  While I was gone yesterday for the baby shower at church, he cleaned up the house for me.  Just little things, but the little things that he knew I noticed, and he knew would help me out because I hadn’t been able to get around to cleaning them.  I’m so lucky to call him my husband.  Even with him working thirds, he still does everything for me that I need him too.

Now I’m going to post pictures of our kitchen, so far.  And of Elizabeth’s room.  Her room is not near done, yet, either.  We still haven’t decorated.  We are working on getting a bookshelf in there this week, and we just got the crib set today and haven’t put it up yet.

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