various updates

I really do not want to beat the dead horse of complaining about the 2014 Polar Vortex, but this week we can celebrate that overnight on March 3rd it stayed… above zero all through the night! I know, it’s practically the subtropics. After properly bundling up, I only lose feeling in my fingers when out for walks with Max now, not my fingers AND toes AND knees like I would in chillier temperatures.

The Max Update: 
This gentle giant weighed in at 35 big ones for his four-month checkup, and he is perfectly capable of getting anything he wants off the dinner table or kitchen counter. (I just found him licking the cutting board I had set in the sink after slicing a thawed venison roast into stew cubes.) For reference, his brother – our “second pick” from the litter and one of the bigger pups – is 23 pounds, so we are expecting him to be massive as an adult. He is fully house-trained (hallelujah) and when we keep him well-exercised, he is a delight to have around. My biggest fear right now is that I might love Max more than the baby after it’s born.

middlemax

The Baby Update: 
Surprised by that news? In a good way? Us, too. My official due date is July 31, but I am very determined not to be one of those people who complains about “still being pregnant” after their due date, so I’m trying to mentally prepare for going overdue at the height of summer. I’m also mentally counting down the days until reaching “viability,” where the baby would have a chance at surviving if I had to deliver early, and I’m only just now hitting the point where I don’t regularly dream about holding a baby while drowning in blood or planning baby funerals. I know the pre-term labor, NICU, stillbirth, infant loss, late miscarriage, etc., statistics, and my past experiences do not give me a “get out of the bad luck club free” card in any of those areas. I’m taking lots of medicine. I have to get lots of shots, which completely eradicate any “2nd Trimester Energy Surge” I was hoping for. I’m at a higher risk for future bed rest. I still don’t feel very “excited” most of the time, which I feel weird about. In some ways, even though I can feel it kicking and swimming around, this baby seems less real than the other ones. I’m frustrated that I’m quickly approaching another due date half-way pregnant and not all the way there — though several times before I have hit that milestone without being pregnant at all and I think that’s probably worse. We were supposed to discover the baby’s sex at my last appointment, but the baby was very modest and wouldn’t give us a peek of any private areas, so all we know for sure is that Aaron and I have a stubborn baby. (Please, stifle your laughter.) Lots of weird, hard feelings? Yes. But joy, too, and awkward jokes about pregnant ninjas when I have my black long-johns on, sighs when Max wants to sit on me to hug the baby bump, laughter during lighting-speed sprints to the bathroom, and high-fives when we find ways to save on future baby expenses. This feels scarier for us than it might for some people, but there is much love and grace in all this, and we are overwhelmingly thankful!

The House Update:
There will be pictures soon! But for now, we are exercising some mad domestic MacGyver skills and doing everything we can to fix a few things up for free. We’ve already installed new kitchen lights — which make the whole place feel better — and I have high hopes about my $3 bathroom redecorating plan for the upstairs bathroom.

The Rest-Of-Life Update: 
This probably deserves it’s own post as well, but we have been so blessed with a warm welcome to this area already! Being only a few hours away from our old town means we’ve had a few more friends-and-family connections, and being a bigger city means we’ve been reconnecting with old friends from Hillsdale, too. I hopped in to a community Bible study class right away, and we have tried to be really proactive about visiting  churches, which seems to be paying off. Our neighbors seem reasonably friendly despite the chilling temperatures, and Aaron is enjoying the work he does even though the commute is a beast in icy conditions. Still no favorite pizza crust!

So – that is how we are falling forward (sometimes more successfully than others) into the newness of these moments God has given. It’s hard, weird, scary, good, happy, sad, silly, annoying, lonely, funny, and exciting. Sometimes all at once, even. But those good parts are becoming more prominent and  I’m very thankful to be moving every day closer to spring!

“Oh, that we might know the Lord! Let us press on to know him. He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn or the coming of rains in early spring.” -Hosea 6:3

image (7)

(Looking forward to Spring for sure! It HAS to be coming. And everyone who knows how tall Aaron is should be impressed by this picture!)

7 thoughts on “various updates

  1. Abby, my husband and I graduated from Hillsdale with Jack and Caroline, and somehow I stumbled upon your blog. I so appreciate your writing and honesty, and will be praying from afar for your dear little family.

    • Thanks for stopping by and saying “hello!” It’s always a good time to connect with Hillsdale grads of another generation. I think it’s especially funny to swap stories and hear how much things change AND stay the same in just a few years. That’s a very special place to spend your college days and I’m sure in the years to come you’ll be amazed see how it equipped you for life in ways you would not have expected. Blessings to you & yours! xo.

  2. Love the quote from the Proverbs on your blog header, very powerful.
    Your writings are so beautiful and touching. I am very sorry about your loss, but hope this pregnancy goes well with God’s help and you will have healthy and happy baby.

    My second pregnancy was pretty hard; prayed whole time to make till 28th week, then 37th and happily, it went great. Wish you safe pregnancy and easy labour.

  3. Hi Abby. I just visited your blog today, Sarah Smith (Wisner :)) told me about your past experiences with miscarriages, I have had a couple myself. I am 20 weeks pregnant now, and still have trouble being excited even though everything looks very good. I really wanted to thank you for sharing honestly how you feel, it is encouraging to hear that my feelings/fears/dreams are not unique to me. (If that makes sense.)

    • Faith — so sorry to hear about your miscarriages. I’ll be praying for your baby! I still have to force myself to be excited, almost a fake-it-til-you-make-it thing, and I think it’s slowly working. It was really obvious to me from the way people talked to me in the early stages of this pregnancy that most people don’t really get what it can be like. (If we are so blessed as to have more kids, I will be very selective about who knows at first – with holidays and moving and family visits, the news sort of forced it’s way out. Not going to deal with that again, if I can help it!)

      You are not alone, and you are a good mom. Blessings to you and this little one coming!

      xo.

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