36 Weeks

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All that happened last week was a lot of cleaning and some organizing of baby clothes and gifts. I’m getting kind of bored with these, to be honest. I feel like my stomach never looks bigger than the week before anymore. It is, according to the measurements at the doctor. But not very visible in these photos. 

How far along: 36 weeks

Gender: BOY!

Symptoms: In this week’s edition of crazy dreams, I dreamed he was born with very short legs and big feet. I may or may not have started yelling about our baby being a dwarf. Then I apologized to him for his tiny shins and the great obstacle this will be in his life. Quite dramatic and vain, my subconscious. Even if he is a dwarf, he will be a handsome one with a bright future. No worries.

Cravings: Crackers and cheese cubes.

Aversions:  Same.

Workouts: Yoga + Weights. I’m really hoping when the weight starts to come off there might be some new muscle under there. I can do more lunges, squats, and wall sits now than I could before I was pregnant.

Weight Gain: 39 pounds.

Movement:  He gets the hiccups at night and usually first thing in the morning. It’s cute but of course I am all about documenting and watching the clock because I read on Dr. Google they can be a sign of a compressed cord or a cord wrapped around the baby’s neck. His don’t last long enough or occur so frequently that it’s a concern but…high alert just incase over here.

Best Moment:  I didn’t see 1 second of rush hour traffic and it. was. glorious. My back feels better in general because I do a lot less sitting in a desk chair or in my car. I’m usually moving around the house and if I’m not, I can lay instead of sit. Something about sitting up just kills.

Not My Finest Moment: Everyone’s new favorite question is: Is your nursery finished? The answer is NO. Not even close. The second most popular question is Are you ready for this baby to be born? The answer is NO. Not even close.

I won’t get into the details of why this is so, because it just stresses me out. There is one Hail Mary Jesus Hallelujah way that we will have the nursery and guest rooms mostly set up (complete is impossible) before the baby is born, and that’s if he is late and I’m induced at 41 weeks. (My induction date is September 22nd at 7pm, by the way. They scheduled it yesterday in case he doesn’t come before then.) I have felt for awhile that he will be early, but I would not be surprised in the LEAST if he’s late. Because that’s how it works when it comes to me stressing out and trying to rush Ron. He tells me it will be fine, I tell him IT MOST CERTAINLY WILL NOT BE and then it’s fine. We get somewhere late and the food’s not ready or only half the people have arrived and he’s all See?? and I’m all This doesn’t count. But it does count because life rewards the chill far more often than it does the spaz. In this relationship anyway.

And yes yes YES I know. The baby won’t care. We don’t actually need the nursery to be done, or half the items on our registry to be bought. This has nothing to do with the baby and everything to do with ME and my hormones and general wish for SOMETHING IN THIS LOVELY HOUSE TO BE COMPLETE. It’s a process, furnishing a house. I get it. And I completely respect Ron’s timeline because a. it’s his money funding this campaign and b. he is able to afford more than ever I could, faster than I ever could, in much better quality, than I EVER IN MY LIFE could. So I just need to buckle up and hush. He’ll get me there, eventually. And I will be oh-so-very happy with the end product. I always am. Think engagement…wedding…house purchase…

So yeah. It will be fine. Also, on the upside, the longer it takes us the more likely we’ll hit winter season with retail stuff. Meaning we will be able to do a much better job with the arctic theme in the nursery.

In the meantime, if you are looking for a list of (boring, but work with me) things I am in control of that you can ask me about without watching me melt into a puddle of anxiety, here they are:

1. The doors.
2. The cabinets
3. The baseboards.

They’re all white and dusty/smudged and will probably be the death of me with children but I’ve got one shot at seeing them ALL sparkly clean at once and it’s now. THIS IS MY TIME, I WILL SEIZE IT.

4. The windows.

I can’t reach all of them and probably shouldn’t be on a ladder. But what I can get to with my feet on the ground, I will clean. It’ll be more than you think. We have apparatuses.

5, Meal planning.

I hope to start planning ahead with Plan to Eat, and getting a few freezer meals done so we don’t order out every single night.

6. Packing my hospital bag. It’s not done yet but I ordered a special weekender bag and it arrived yesterday so…I’m going to get on it! Help me people. What do I need? What should I leave?

Looking Forward To: I have one more shower this weekend. If you’re keeping count, that’s number FOUR. It’s absurd how loved you are, Little Man. 

 

35 Weeks
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Pregnancy So Far (up to 17 weeks)
God is on the Move (announcement)

35 Weeks

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Just because I’m done working at the library doesn’t mean we’re ready for you bud. We need you to be a jailbird for 5 more weeks.

How far along: 35 weeks

Gender: BOY!

Symptoms: Back and pelvic pain continue to worsen. It really feels like he is breaking my pelvis at times, hurts more than it did when I fractured it and I have trouble walking multiple times per day. A few days ago I started getting shooting pains while sitting down, that’s new. Also numbness and swelling in my hands and feet.

Cravings: Cereal. Starbucks Very Berry Refresher.

Aversions:  Same.

Workouts: Yoga + Weights.

Weight Gain: 38 pounds. Pretty sure all 2 pounds went to my backside this week.

Movement: He seems to recognize Ron’s voice now, and was especially active when Ron said Tesla at the NST. It was the funniest coincidence! He wasn’t reaching the goals they wanted at first so Ron said something like Better behave buddy or you’re not getting your Tesla. (They sell little kid versions of Teslas.) Immediately his heart rate rose and he started moving around. When he relaxed and his heart rate went back down Ron said Good job, keep it up and we’ll get you a Tesla. And once again he started moving and his heart rate went up. We tried saying Tesla one more time during that session and he did it again. He also started moving a lot when Ron said it at home once. It really has to be a coincidence but it cracks us up regardless.

He also does this thing where he moves to the front of my belly, then backs away. Ron calls it surfacing, like a whale. That makes us laugh too.

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Best Moment + Not My Finest Moment: I’ll combine them this week since leaving the library was both a happy and sad thing for me.

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It still feels surreal that I won’t ever be going back there, as an employee. When you work in such close proximity with people, the way we did in the children’s department, you can’t help but share your lives with each other. So to up and walk away from them was hard.

At the same time, I was ready. I don’t think I could despise a drive any more than I did the one from Carmel to Avon and back. And I love new beginnings, fresh starts. I don’t have a computer at home so I had been using the one at work for the last 7.5 years. It felt amazing to clear out my digital files and organize them on google drive. One of those long overdue tasks that I would have probably never gotten around to unless forced. I’m also really excited to finish some cleaning and organizing tasks at home.

But yeah. I cried a lot on the way home Friday evening. Part sadness from leaving my friends. Part overwhelming sense of guilt I suddenly felt at how fortunate I am to not just stay home with my son, but to be home for WEEKS before his arrival. Seriously, who gets to do that? And part relief at escaping the grind of that drive. I was a mess when I walked in the door and saw this: 

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Ron and I had been joking about my “retirement” for months. We both recognize staying home with children is no vacation, but we still like to laugh about my “Carmel Housewife” status. It’s fun for us to kid around because we know the stereotypes will be so far from reality, the mere idea of it is absurd. Therefore when I walked in and saw the balloons and silliness I did this awkward cry-laugh thing for like 15 minutes.

It meant a lot to me that he knew how bittersweet the day would be, and went to such effort to try and make me laugh. If you didn’t know better you might think he was mocking the situation, but it actually showed how much he supported me and I love him for that. <3

Looking Forward To: Weekly visits with my OB, they start next week!

 

Random:

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I bought these onesies for little man to wear when Ron and I are racing. Boomer Phelps wore the Team Daddy one to the olympics.

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Each year our church gives out new t-shirts during a sermon series called I Love My Church. This year they also sold onesies! We had to get a 12 month one because they were sold out of all the smaller sizes but that’s alright. It might fit him in time for baby dedication in May. Pair it with some baby blue jeans and a sweet jacket and he’ll look so suave. ;) 

image35 weeks. I decided it was time for a slightly different pose. I’ll combine it with 15, 20, 25, and 30 at some point. 

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Pregnancy So Far (up to 17 weeks)
God is on the Move (announcement)

34 Weeks

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Receiving maternity photos was the highlight of the week.

How far along: 34 weeks

Gender: BOY!

Symptoms:  Between my back and pelvis, I am never comfortable. If I sit or lay too long, my back tightens up and hurts like crazy. The heating pad is my new best friend, I even take it to work.

On the other hand, if I walk or move around too much, shooting pains will hit my pelvic bone and take my breathe away. It’s very similar to how I felt while running at the beginning of pregnancy. I used to have to stop and stand or walk when that pain hit, and obviously I eventually quit running altogether because it wasn’t going to get better. I was afraid it would be unavoidable by the end of pregnancy, and I was right. It’s even a little more intense now than it was then. Ron and I were at the Castleton Macy’s looking at bedding on Saturday when my pelvis spazzed. I was a pathetic hobbling mess trying to get out of there. So I think I’m going to try one of those maternity belts. They have mixed reviews from friends who have tried them but it’s worth a shot I suppose.

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I’ll be going with the one on the left. Unless I wind up totally debilitated, I refuse to hassle with the monstrosity that is the thing on the right. 

Cravings: Cereal. Starbucks Very Berry Refresher.

Aversions: I’m about ready for coffee but I still can’t even think about that veggie potato from McAlister’s, incase you were wondering. GAG.

Workouts: Yoga + Weights. 

Weight Gain: 36 pounds. After last week’s crazy 3 pound fluctuation early in the week, I decided now would be a good time to start weighing myself ONCE per week, on the same day, at the same time. So Saturday mornings. This Saturday morning I had only gone up 1 pound from last week’s Saturday morning. The fluctuation really was a fluke it seems, so that’s good. 

Movement: More or less the same it’s been for the last month. He was KILLING me at church this weekend though. I started to get a little hot and panicky for a minute because he was pouncing on my bladder and we were sitting in the middle of the row with people on both sides and people in front and behind us. I felt like I might need to get up and go to the bathroom but I had visions of myself falling on people’s laps because I’m not so graceful with a violent basketball on my stomach.

Thankfully he did finally calm down enough that I could pay attention to the sermon. Ron pointed out that our worship music is super loud, and it probably wakes him up. Maybe that’s why he’s so active during services. In that case, I might listen to the worship in the atrium where it doesn’t vibrate the ground, and then come in afterward. See if that makes a difference in his behavior/how well I’m able to pay attention. 

Best Moment: We got our maternity pictures back, and they are exactly what I had hoped they would be. Our photographers are amazing. I shared about 30 on Facebook. Even if we’re not friends, you should be able to see them if you care to. They’re public on my profile. Otherwise here are a few favorites:

View More: http://coryandjackie.pass.us/karen-maternity

View More: http://coryandjackie.pass.us/karen-maternity

View More: http://coryandjackie.pass.us/karen-maternity
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Karen Maternity-0051

View More: http://coryandjackie.pass.us/karen-maternity View More: http://coryandjackie.pass.us/karen-maternityView More: http://coryandjackie.pass.us/karen-maternity

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All of the photos where you can see the heart ring mean a lot to me, but this one is my favorite. I’m not really one for props in pictures. Some people use balloons or signs or other things to symbolize babies they have lost. I wear that ring every day (well, when my fingers aren’t swollen) and for me seeing it in these pictures is a perfect, simple way of acknowledging Brave.

View More: http://coryandjackie.pass.us/karen-maternity Karen Maternity-0023
I truly couldn’t be more grateful to have these photos. At this point in pregnancy I feel big and uncomfortable and the farthest thing from pretty. I wasn’t sure it would even be possible to like photos of myself right now, but I love these. They are beautiful and I can’t wait to hang a few on the walls of our home.

Not my finest moment: I did pretty good this week. We will be cutting it close with getting paint and carpet done before I go into labor and that gave me a couple moments of anxiety. Not to mention it’s highly unlikely the nursery will be picture-perfect complete before our tiny sir arrives and that bums me out. But not all hope is lost. As long as he doesn’t come early we *should* still be able to finish the main floor of the house, and his nursery. I just have a feeling he won’t stay in the full 40. I hope I’m wrong.

And I know, we don’t really NEED anything to be complete. That’s really just a want. It will all come together eventually. 

Looking Forward To: This whole busy week! I have a breastfeeding class tonight, and an appointment with the NP tomorrow + our weekly NST. Ron is on call today so he will be off tomorrow. Hopefully he doesn’t work all night and will be able to go with me. If he can, we’re going to stop by the carpet place afterward and put in an order + maybe pick out some area rugs before I go into work. Tomorrow night, we have our birth and baby class. Wednesday I’m visiting a friend before work, then working late.

So before I know it, it’ll be my last day at work. My department is taking me to lunch at McAlister’s on Friday, where we will take a selfie with my selfie stick because nobody really likes the photo from my baby shower, ha. Then I’ll take a before photo of my desk, put the rest of my items in a box, take an after photo, and post all three photos on Facebook, with a country music caption. Because that’s what I do.

It will be sad, but I’m ready.

Random:

I found a book that combined my love of polar bears and running. It couldn’t be more cute or perfect!

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And I started packing up my junk at work. 4 more days.

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21 Weeks

20 weeks
19 Weeks

18 Weeks
Pregnancy So Far (up to 17 weeks)
God is on the Move (announcement)

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PAL: Two Weeks Notice

 

She’s fighting back tears, she’s fighting back years
Of the only life she’s ever known

Two weeks from today, I will walk away from my career. A line of work that began in August of 1999, at 15 years old. In that time I worked very hard. I earned a Masters degree. I served on the state conference planning committee, and as conference presenter, for multiple years. I can’t count the number of storytimes I performed, teen programs I planned, or professional development workshops I attended. I’ve invested over half my life into this field, and part of me will always be a librarian.

But it’s time to go.

But there’s a future that’s bright in the dead of this night,
And all she’s gotta do is go

I’m trading it all in for the role of housewife. Carmel housewife, to be exact. A rich, snobby, trophy with a nanny and a maid and no real responsibility. I’ll be dependent on my husband, and what I lack in skills and intellectual substance, I’ll make up for in size 0 jeans and rock hard abs. You know, from all those hours spent at the gym avoiding meals. And my kids.

Or not.

At all.

The dues Ron paid in medical training now afford us the ability to live on one income, and we’re grateful for that. But our alignment with the stereotypes end there.

I’ve chosen to stay home not because I’m lazy or lack ambition, but because in my heart I know that’s where my God given gifts will be best spent.

I only get one shot at this life. At being a wife, and a parent. If I don’t have to juggle a full-time job alongside those roles to make ends meet, if I have the opportunity to spend my days maintaining the house and raising our kids, I’m going to take it.

But won’t I be bored?
Are preschool teachers, daycare providers or nannies bored? What about janitors or cooks? Or administrative professionals in charge of managing schedules and appointments?

Won’t I feel like those degrees went to waste?
Is it a waste to know that if my family needs me to provide monetarily I will be able to obtain a position with decent pay and benefits? (The answer is no, it’s invaluable)

This choice is not for everyone. Some can’t swing it financially, while others find a passion and purpose in their careers that can’t be surpassed by the fulfillment they would find staying home. I completely respect that. I’m sure there will be days I wonder if picking up cheerios and stepping on legos is really what God had in mind when He made me.

But in the quiet, when I’m alone and listening to that still small voice, the answer is obvious. Home is where I belong. Maybe I’ll eventually make a little money from writing, or a side hobby. Maybe I won’t. Maybe I’ll go back to work when the kids are in school, or maybe I’ll pursue volunteer goals. Maybe this is just for a season, maybe it’s forever. I don’t know.

All I can say for sure is right now, this is the direction I need to go.

And turn the radio up 
Roll the windows down
She got an open road
Ain’t no stopping her now

But first I have to say goodbye to my second family, and home away from home.

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I have had it so, so good for the past 7.5 years. This department helped me grow as a person and a professional, and the chemistry we have as a crew…it’s irreplaceable. I pray that my successor fits in and does my job even better than me. But more than that, I hope he/she never takes these coworkers for granted.

It’s a little surreal that there’s a baby on the way. And that when I leave work on August 12th, I will only be back for occasional visits. There’s no stopping time though, both those life-changing events are coming at me full steam. I’m excited, of course. Beyond relieved to stop making such a dreadful drive, and so ready to look into our sweet baby’s eyes. Still, as with most great change, these final days are a little bittersweet. I’ll miss the undivided time with my husband and sharing work and life with these ladies.

While I can’t wait for what’s ahead, I will always look back fondly at what I’m leaving behind. 

She’s got the pedal to the floor in her hand-me-down Accord,
And the only thing that’s left to do
Is catch a couple green lights and those baby blue eyes
Will leave nothing in that rearview
But love, nothing but love*

Dust, Eli Young Band
*slightly modified