Here I am, 30 weeks pregnant with our little baby boy Louis. Though our whole family is eager to meet him, I am thrilled he is where he should be; growing in my belly.
We had so many scares this pregnancy. In the 6th week, I had some troubling spotting that I mentioned in our pregnancy announcement. During the second trimester at our 20 week sonogram we discovered Louis had a partial blockage in his ureter, causing urine to back up into his kidneys. I don't know which was more overwhelming: the medical jargon we had to learn in order to understand his birth defect or the emotions that followed. Those first few days after finding out consisted of many tears, seeing many doctors, and trying to come to terms with what it all meant.
Though I had many, many fears, and voiced all of them to Stephen (sometimes hourly), naming the "bad outcomes" freed me from actually being afraid. I found it most helpful to just process everything by talking it through with him. He consistently reminds me to stay in the moment, to be grateful for our boy, and to place his condition in God's hands because there is truly nothing we can do to fix it. Every mom knows how helpless you feel when control is out of your hands.
After I dealt with the emotions, I accepted what was ahead with peace. I began to see this unexpected news as an imperfect situation that I need to steer through, rather than a punishment or "bad karma". My family still needs me, and quite frankly, I needed as much distraction from my fears as possible, so I really shifted my focus to homeschooling our 3 year old daughter, keeping my body healthy, and gathering as much strength as I can from prayer, time with friends and family, and reading (I recently devoured Girl at War and Bringing Up Bebe).
Though we had to switch practices and have consultations with multiple doctors, we have finally found wonderful care with doctors that really believe in me and in Louis. Belief is so powerful. Our doctors consistently cheer us on when our weekly sonograms show his normal growth and development, and good amniotic fluid levels. They have assured me that I can try for a natural birth like I had with Cecilia, as long as Louis is stable! Also, the hospital where we are giving birth is "Baby Friendly" so we will get to have plenty of skin to skin time and encouragement from the staff to breastfeed.
The second trimester was tough to navigate, but my energy levels were incredible. Thanks to the Bulletproof / Paleo Diet and my commitment to keep my sweets intake to a minimum, meaning no refined sugars or loads of fruit, I have successfully avoided Gestational Diabetes. My weight gain has been on track for what baby needs, and not much more, which is a massive difference from the 60 pounds I gained with my daughter. I did experience a bit of lower back pain, which was minimized with a Snoogle pillow, pregnancy support belt, and hip rocking (cat-cow in yoga). Additionally, I found out I have something called a Dynamic Cervix, which means it changes in length from one moment to the next, so on some sonograms it looked shortened (which is how it looks before you give birth) and other times it looked completely fine. I had to take some supplemental progesterone hormone, but my body was not reacting well to it. After some online research, I found out that Magnesium and Selenium deficiencies can remedy it, and much to my doctor's surprise, the supplements worked.
Now that I'm in the third trimester I have so much relief that we have made it this far, and without needing surgery while pregnant to correct Louis' condition. Nesting has most definitely begun, just ask my delivery guy (hello, Amazon Prime). My hospital bag is packed. Our logistics plan has been sent out to family to be prepared for Louis' birthday; we even pitched in to get a carseat for my parents so the child exchange can be seamless. We are getting "ahead" in homeschooling, soaking up solo time with Cecilia, and trying to rest as much as possible before the dreaded sleep deprivation. I'm full of gratitude for the community (though not geographically close) that has come together to support us and lend a hand. It is SO good to get back to creating content for this website, and I hope you will continue to follow along with me in this journey.