.ups and downs.

We are 37 weeks the day after tomorrow, so it’s a definite UP to have made it full-term! I wouldn’t expect Dragon to make his appearance for a few weeks yet, but it’s anyone’s guess as to when that will be.

And in the world of literal “ups,” B was up from 2:50-5:50am last night. I’m not sure if he’s sensitive to the time change, the impending birth, or he has something else going on, but I’m telling you that the child was a.w.a.k.e. He wanted to turn the lights on, eat breakfast, play his drums, and tell me stories. He pulled every piece of felt from his felt board basket and separated out all of the sea creatures. R was up with him for the first hour and a half trying to get him back to sleep. I just caved and played from 4:30 until he couldn’t keep his eyes open anymore sometime before six. He’s a funny sweet creature (even in the middle of the night). R and I both look a little “night of the living dead” at this particular juncture. Between winter colds, sleepless nights, and daylight savings, we’re the epitome of ready for a newborn (sarcasm).

The Ups:

  • We bought Bram a realistic newborn baby doll in advance of Dragon’s arrival. It’s been such a pleasure to see the ways that he cares for her without any direction. He rocks her, wears her, nurses her, and wants to sing her songs and read her stories. He’s growing much attached and shows a lot of sweetness and concern for her. It’s heartening to think that some of these instincts will spill over into his interactions with his baby brother, though I have the sense to know there will be good and bad.1530354_10152193580742870_1690624185_n
  • B’s musical education has grown this week. He had a visit from one of his babysitters from last year, and she brought her slide trombone for him to play. He was mesmerized. And in the same week, he had a visit from his music mama Madeline AND the chance to play a full-sized black guitar and a recorder at our friends’ Eliza and Katie’s house last night (look for the Dragon-belly photo bomb in that last picture)! Big wins all around!
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  • And in big kid news, he had his first haircut this weekend. It was a very minor trim, but he had started to get a little mullet-y in the back. Still, it’s amazing how much such a subtle change can make him look so much older. He’s really showing so much new independence every week it seems.
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The Downs:

  • We’ve had a few prenatal hiccups over the last several weeks. It seems we’ve dodged a fair number of pregnancy bullets that could have really complicated our birth, but, for now, we’re in the clear. Dragon has flipped to head down, and, I think, anterior, which is a distinct relief after worrying over a breech presentation for a few weeks (breech would spell automatic cesarean in our geographic area). Since I’ve been tracking it for the last six weeks, my blood sugars have been stable overall. So there’s no reason to think that I have true gestational diabetes (also a relief). Then we had a bit of a pre-eclampsia scare at our 36 week visit (two high BP readings and some protein in my urine). All of the subsequent lab work came back within normal limits, though, so we just have to keep an eye on things for the duration of the pregnancy (which we would be doing anyway). My BP does seem to be creeping up, though, which isn’t the most comforting thing in the world. If I did develop true pre-e at this stage, we’d likely have an induction. It’s not an ideal birth experience, but we’re full-term and otherwise healthy, so I trust we’d make it through intact. I did just find out this morning that I am Group B Strep positive, which I’ve spent the better part of the last two months trying to eradicate from my system. It’s a disappointing diagnosis, but, in light of all of these other scenarios, it feels like small potatoes. I’ll need to have IV antibiotics in labor to protect the baby, so we’ll have to go in a little earlier in active labor than we probably would have otherwise. That said, I’ll take a heplock and a part-time IV pole over a breech baby or pre-eclampsia any day. Still, it would be nice to just have smooth sailing from here on out. We’ll see…
  • I was reading an article about potty learning the other day and the author suggested some external factors that could contribute to potty regression. Namely, getting a new sibling, moving, and starting preschool. I had a moment of panic when I realized that B will likely experience all of these events over the next 7-8 months. Then, I extrapolated that out to include my own panic at getting through these milestones (including finding a new job for me) and I began to think I might have some regression of my own (hopefully not of the potty variety). Really, though, this staying in town thing is coming with a lot of new to-dos. Finances are t.i.g.h.t. right now, so finding a better job really takes top priority (or, you know, second to the new baby), but we’re also excited about selling our house and getting into something bigger and permanent. R went to an open house for a perfect-for-us home yesterday. It’s hard to know that’s on the market right now, but that we just need to sit idly by before listing our home. But we just couldn’t handle the cleaning, showing, and finagling to sell a house until the baby is home and (at least) a few weeks old.

I know this makes it sound like the downs are more plentiful than the ups, but it really doesn’t feel that way most of the time. They just take more consideration than the easy parts of our daily lives. That’s a pretty good place to be right now. It’s funny to think of the people we were in this post as compared to now. In some ways, I envy those two for their sleep and their daily showering and their rampant optimism (and their snow-less backyard and immaculate housekeeping). But in oh-so-many ways I wouldn’t trade places with them for the world. I feel more of my life now, more confident, and more whole. I trust myself as a parent, as a laboring woman, as a spouse. I trust the healing power of time. I trust these boys. Despite everything the last four years has brought to our table, both good and bad, I trust more than ever before.

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6 thoughts on “.ups and downs.

  1. Willa has been doing the 3am to 6am wakeful dance off and on for the past three weeks or so. Since they are so close in age, maybe it’s a newly two year old thing? Here’s hoping for the both of us that it settles down soon. Love the picture of B and his doll and congratulations on making it to the home stretch!

  2. Sweet boy! And E has been up a lot, too–we’ve been saying time change. Last time she was up every hour, on the hour from 1-5. Ugh. Sorry about the Strep, but you’re right–that’s much less of a nuisance than the other problems would have been, so hopefully it’s all smooth sailing from here on out! We’re waiting on potty training until the brothers arrive, since I don’t want to put in all the work just to have her use it against us (one of our friends’ daughters reacted that way and it was not pretty). I’m sure you’ll find an awesome house for you as soon as yours is sold. The market is just starting to open up for spring now, so in a couple months all of the houses that people have been sitting in all winter will go up for sale and buyers will come out and you’ll sell yours fast and find a great one to move into. :)

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