Monday, November 21, 2011

Friday, November 18, 2011


Sigh. I have been achy with a sore throat, tight chest, and my chapped hands show the proof of excessive hand washing, worried I was going to get the baby sick. I remember asking my mom once: how do you handle being a mom and getting sick (I never remember seeing her sick in bed). And she told me, "you just have to do it." That is, life continues, through the aches and pains, you just have to do it. [Sarah, we are so German, too ;) ]

I am so thankful for the advice and the old adages that we all hear over and over. Yesterday was the babe's 2 month well-check-or-first round of shots day.

During pregnancy I tried to research and I hopelessly fell into the scary world of internet information. Most of which I found was anti-vaccine. I am a hypochondriac, I don't like medicine, I don't take any, mostly because I don't trust it. I don't know how it all works, and yeah, I feel like my, admitted, ignorance is alot smarter than years of research. Yet, being the hypochondriac I am, the slightest sniffle or cough would be enough to send me into the dark world of , "what if:" What if that could be the start of pertussis?! I knew we'd be doing vaccines at some point, but when? Would I ever feel okay about this?

Then at family night, I asked in semi-desperation my mother-in-law (then NICU nurse, now Nani to 12 grandchildren) "I'm scared about these vaccines--are they safe? Can you just tell me?" And she told me (also drawing from knowledge from her pediatrician husband, Dr. Poppa), it is scary, it's usually really scary for parents, but the vaccines are really safe. And then she said, what we all have heard before, but I never understood, "You will NEVER know what all the answers are." I will never know completely what's best for my kids. But I can only try. Processing this, I realize, I really do have a fear of failure--of making a mistake with my kid. And maybe that mistake would be too great. Unforgivable. But knowing my limits as simple housewife and mom, I feel so much more freedom in NOT knowing the answers. I just have to try.

So what did it look like for me to try? Reading on the 2 mo. vaccines, knowing the diseases they protect against, taking note of my initial reaction of said research and take it all to the doctor. This year for thanksgiving, I must recognize my extreme thanks for the care that our doctor gives to little Asa. I couldn't have been more impressed with him and his nurse when we went in yesterday. And it turns out, the shots I thought seemed extra important were the ones he felt were highest priority. He told us which ones we simply didn't really need right now and I feel we all left happy after that appointment. [Except for poor Asa; I have never heard the kid scream that high before--but he was a trooper and didn't seem affected by it at all, afterwards]

I am so glad to have relations that, rather than insulate us, make us seemingly more transparent. I am so thankful that we have help in this life, that there are those of us who are smarter, stronger than us, and those who need our help. What a wonderful place to be--to experience both roles. We have much to be thankful for.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

A Cry-A Rant. Forgive me.

At some point I think I told myself I would never write about any thing political. I guess because it's too controversial and because I recognize i am often times way ill-informed (i kind of give up--there is so much overwhelming bs out there and i get sick of it--and give up--) But as I get older, I am less apathetic, and more sure of some things.

Politics is our national religion. God fits in somewhere after the distinguishing factor of Republican or Democrat. I would argue alot of people would say "I'm a conservative christian" or "a non-judgmental lover of Love. (translation: I was/am/could be considered a Christian but don't judge me, for I am very involved with liberal issues)" I've been both. and they both fail. They both are stuck up in being contrary to one another, and faithful to their political party.

So I see all this hub a loo about these occupy protests and critics of said protests; and I can say the right thing to my right winged family and friends and the left thing to my lefty family and friends. But we all are so greatly misguided. Righties: I can show you verse after verse about the wrath of God and arrogant cheaters and about giving to the undeserving (the entire foundation of Christianity is the sacrifice made to the undeserving), etc... And lefties: I don't know, do you know what you want? I suspect some repaying evil for evil? What do you want and what will you do when you get it? Are you poor and want to live like the rich? How will we all get what we want? I feel the driving force behind political parties is to provoke. For example, I did it, you know, first by feeling defensive and theatened by the "hippy feminists" at a war memorial in D.C. when i was 17 and then again with my unshaven pits and gospel of relativity and all at 19. But I'm not convinced by any of it anymore and I know: It doesn't work.

Nothing anyone is doing is working. And I'm kind of frustrated and annoyed and sad. I'm annoyed with christians that cry out on the streets that they have a right to work and to have health insurance, etc, I'm annoyed with christians that think "you just need to pull up your bootstraps, kids and you poor people." I'm frustrated by conscientious christians who argue for everything green and peace while they judge families who chose to have a flock of children. I'm frstrated by christians who dress up in expensive rags and shout about being the 99% from their computers and iphones bought on credit that's accruing more debt. I'm annoyed and frustrated and sad about christians who arn't pro-life and I'm equally annoyed and frustrated and sad aboutchristians who are "pro life" yet believe it's their right to carry arms and support capital punishment.

I guess that is what it is to live in America. To be constantly annoyed and arguing with each other. This is the way to keep each other on track (? there is alot of sarcasm in these past couple sentences). I don't know, it's exhausting, and maybe this is where Seth's mantra, "we're not a part of that story" is especially applicable. I don't really have to worry about all this--I can do what I believe is right. I can raise another flock in order to bring about the Gospel (don't be afraid--geez). And maybe this is where I can really rest in Jesus:

OH Lord, there is so much wrong with the world we live in today. I recognize I do just as much wrong by pointing my finger: you're wrong you're wrong you're wrong you're wrong. Deliver us. Help us not to contribute to the problems. Help us to bring about hope and peace (but not by making more turmoil). Oh come Lord Jesus, Come. Have mercy on us and forgive us. We've hopelessly lost our way. Help us to be bathed in the blood of the Lamb. Let us have Your mark.

Monday, November 14, 2011

A New Commitment

I have to begin cleaning out Asa's closet, because his clothes have become too tight. It's a task I don't really want to do: saying goodbye to his first clothes. And so I'm beginning to learn even more about this growing into adult thing, by watching my own child grow up.

Yesterday I felt even more like a grown up (in some sense) as I was confirmed at Christ our Hope--I am now an Anglican! (I really like having some concrete tradition that I can say wholeheartedly that I am a part of--it's like taking responsibility and charge, I guess, of my own beliefs--and hey after all the crappy dark years, I've wound back up in a beautiful community of Christian believers.) Standing up with my husband I felt I was making a commitment like the one I made a year and a half ago. I felt the same way when Asa was baptized last week. These events are huge, and they should be regarded along the same scale as the sacrament of marriage.

The liturgy of both events mark what it is we believe about being confirmed or being baptized. What is so profound about these events is not merely ritual and going through steps of tradition and religious practice (although I think alot can be said for adhering to tradition...) but what is built into the liturgy of the service. I grew up in an evangelical tradition, and I will say, there is alot of judgment passed onto some of the more liturgical Christian denominations--passing them off as cold, insensitive, communal? That is that an individual cannot possibly make a meaningful decision about one's faith if they're simply following steps in a ritual like confirmation or when a parent makes the decision to baptize a baby. And it's in that very individualistic thinking that I find a problem and thus liturgy is kind of my answer? Corporate worship. Christianity is not an individualistic faith. We depend on others to build us up in the Faith, and ultimately, we depend on CHRIST to save us. Where does the gospel of "me" factor into Christianity or into Christian worship? Should it? I think not. And I think that's where liturgy, call and response, whatever you call it, is so beautifully symbolic of this kind of faith. A dependence on something greater than ourselves! That's why when the Bishop said to us "candidates" yesterday, "Brothers and sisters" I'm moved. Every little word fashioned in the liturgy means something--that we are doing this together, that we are now a family in Christ due to the blood that he shed. Sure, we make those individual decisions to follow Christ (I mean not to minimalize this), but that is not the end. With confirmation, we pray that we remain committed to the decisions we have made and we profess them to an authority so we can be kept accountable by our True family, the church as we mature and grow within this new community.

The Bishop prayed this yesterday at the close of the Confirmation, "God has made us one in Christ. He has set his seal upon us and, as a pledge of what is to come, has given the Spirit to dwell in our hearts."

I am now committed to a community of believers, and with the help of our community we will, by God's Good Grace, will build up His Kingdom.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

A poem for a Mom

seth read this to me the other day. i thought it was lovely.

Only she who has breast-fed

Only she who has breast-fed
knows how beautiful the ear is.
Only they who have been breast-fed
know the beauty of the clavicle.
Only to humans the Creator
has given the earlobe.
The humans, through clavicles
slightly resembling birds,
entwined in caresses fly
to the place ta night where,
rocking the cradle of cradles,
the babe is wailing,
where on a pillow of air
the stars nestle like toys.
And some of them speak.
-Vera Pavlova

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

wear the 'scars'

My sweet boy slept for 6 1/2 hours last night. I was so awake when he woke up to nurse that I couldn't fall back asleep. My mind could not fall asleep.
It may be no secret that I have not always had the highest self esteem. During pregnancy I dealt with old demons as my weight escalated. Now after pregnancy and after child birth, similar thoughts emerge. They haven't been that bad, that is, not as bad as I had anticipated--I'm being fairly nice to myself and giving myself time. I don't really feel rushed to get rid of these "remaining so or so many pounds." But, in all honesty, I worry about not having enough time to "have my body back." You know, couples usually have another baby. And the cycle continues.
I don't want to make this a discussion about birth control or how ever many babies our particular family may have, but I do want to say that I realized I really want to hold on to this notion of "my body." My 24 or something year old body. My pre-pregnancy body. But I'm really realizing that I am only going to get older. And I give up my selfish desire to retain my youth (often through vain attempts). I will have more kids. And more importantly, I want more kids. But with more kids means, more nursing, more growing bellies, more post partum bellies; a body aging and weathering. It's all kind of frightening. That and becoming more "mom like" (as if that were a bad thing)makes me a little uneasy somehow--maybe my spirited and rebellious past is still desperately trying to hold on as my more conservative present becomes more and more of a reality.
And last night as I lay in bed wide away, pondering these things, thought about this long purple cardigan I got that looks cool but in some way, matronly. But who cares? It's handy, cheap, and completely practical. Now, what's not practical? My old clothes: like, unstructured shirts, dresses (not good for nursing), minis. And how about my old go-to hairstyle? Pig tails. Moms don't wear pig tails!
I'm exaggerating. I will probably wear all these things, but I am sensing a change. So watch out world [or watch out self] I may soon be pulling out some mom jeans and a very conservative cut.
I laugh partially because I'm joking, but mostly because does any of this matter, at all? What is the fear that lurks behind this mysterious "getting older" thing? I don't know but it certainly doesn't fit into any Christian narrative and so.....

5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. (2 Corinthians 10:5)

The knowledge of God being, in this case, 1. children are wonderful, wonderful, wonderful 2. I am a mother, I've followed the design of things, and it is naturally beautiful 3. We are raising new generations in the name of Christ. That is it. And I am already getting to wear the "scars" of the battles of motherhood. [paraphrasing from a friend:] I would certainly say that they're beautiful on anyone else, now, how about I say the same for myself.

Friday, November 4, 2011

my nighttime prayer

Having a child is like getting a crash course in patience and understanding. Last night, after nearly a week of our son's new routine of sleeping 4-6 hours at night (that means--waking up once during the night!), we woke up nearly every 3-4 hours. I feel exhausted this morning (hello coffee) and felt, frankly, pretty annoyed with our little bundle of joy--or as it was last night, bundle of snorts and gas and discomfort. poor man. I know it's only natural to feel annoyed in times like these. Being a mom, and being needed constantly is an adjustment--especially after you've had time to "adjust" and when your child decides to change up his pretty consistent routine :) haha
But being a mom, for me, is a big wake up call that, "it's not all about me." I always say in baby talk, "it's hard to be a baby." And though i'm just being partially hyperbolic during my moments of baby talk, I think it's true, it is hard to be a baby: you're forced into a cold world from somewhere so warm and tight, your mom is not a mind reader and cannot give you what you need simply because she doesn't always know what you need, and you have to deal with these new weird things like dry colorado air, and painful gas (Mr. A's mom eats a real healthy diet with lots of greens, beans, and garlic but lots of greens, beans, and garlic, means upset tum for baby). It's hard to be a baby. And though I may get frustrated when I lose my precious sleep, I have to remind myself that this baby depends on me, not because he's just a clingy new friend who I risk spoiling and compromising my values, (I think sometimes we like to think these sorts of things when we are confronted with losing independence--that somehow we are just spoiling this new stranger in our lives), but because...he's a baby and absolutely cannot do it without me. You may read this and be, like, duh. But this small distinction, having empathy for my small child rather than being defensive that he's like, manipulating me to get closer to me (I know that sounds crazy, but your mind goes to these when you're losing sleep and you're constantly needed) helps me to calmly (even--happily?!) get out of bed, and to give my child what he really needs. He needs to know I am there for him. And I love being there for him. I will be there whenever he needs; a kiss when he falls, a hug before bed, the reassurance that we'll take care of him forever. Wow, just writing that reminds me of this gorgeous lullaby that my friend, Leah, posted to my facebook wall. It's by My Brightest Diamond and is written for her son. Watch it.

In order to do this though, I need strength. And help. My nighttime prayer is always to boldly ask for sleep. And then, not only for sleep, but for the strength, endurance and patience it takes to care for an infant. And while these things are good, I most of all pray that I allow God to work through my inadequacies and weaknesses as a mom. That I rely on the True Strength that comes not by my own means and accomplishments but in being weak and being unable. I pray that I would give up what I think I need for the true help and strength that can only come from the power found in Christ. True rest can only come from Him, and I just pray that I am able to wait in quiet for what this means--for me, and my family.

Happy Friday, Happy Weekend.

Asa gets baptized this weekend!! Talk about an answer to prayer--this very nighttime prayer--for this community is the Body that helps make us strong in some way, shape or form. We are blessed.


Thursday, November 3, 2011

brad + ashley...engaged!

My dear friend Ashley just got engaged to Brad, and I couldn't be happier for them! I had the privilege of spending the evening with them as we went out and found the perfect fall backdrop for this beautiful couple's impromptu engagement shoot. Hooray for marriage, and hooray for Ash and Brad!

goofing off while i test the light...arn't they sweet?


so happy together ( and so happy we caught the yellow leaves before the snow!!)

Blessings to the couple as they prepare for marriage; this is such a special time!

Friday, October 21, 2011

common prayer

This was yesterday's prayer in Common Prayer :

Lord, you descended into the mire of this world to raise us up. Enable us to descend as you descended that we might rise with you to the beloved community of your resurrected life. Amen.

Come, Lord Jesus, Come.

Monday, October 17, 2011

asa 1 mo.

one month?! the babe is getting bigger and stronger and chubbier each day. happy day, Mr. A.

from this:
to this:

Mom and Pa love you.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Conversations with A Newborn


"Are you lookin all around, Asa? Are you lookin at daddy's desk?"

Asa's eyes like blue marbles shift from side to side; his jerky limbs swing up and down.

"Well, we have plenty of stuff to look at in here; it's like a crazy old grandma's house in here."

Asa responds with his infamous and way-too-loud-for-such-a-tiny-guy fart.

What are those weird things going in your mom's hair?"

Asa watches as pink purple and green curlers go up in my hair. Gives concerned look. Probably thinking: finish feeding me, lady.... Nope. Gives another mighty fart.

"Hi, Bubs. Do you like pears?"

Asa stretches and begins to cry. Probably thinking, "Mom, quit with the blogging, give me food."

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


It's been two weeks since Asa made his beautiful arrival into this world. And when I say beautiful, I wholeheartedly mean "perfect" or the way birth was intended to be. :) Rather than trying to forget my birth I enjoyed replaying it in my head, over and over. I have a couple friends who have asked about my birth story and I feel (just as I've done with the story of Seth and my Engagement story) I should document the details if only for my own benefit.

I will warn. This will be long. And it will be a birth story--which means--blood, sweat, swear words, etc. j/k

I was induced two saturdays ago at 7:30am--Asa had been measuring slightly small. Though my midwife wasn't concerned, the doctor at the clinic who read my ultrasound figured if something was wrong (say the placenta was pooping out) it'd be better to nourish him outside the womb. Induction was never part of my "plan" er.."preference" and I had to mourn as the days drew closer to the induction date without any signs of my body going into labor on its own (or rather, with many frustrating "false starts" or warm-ups). My midwife wanted to start cytotec (i was skeptical--i'm well aware of the scary reports about this drug) at night and give me an ambien so that i could sleep through the effacement process. Though cytotec was not something I would have chosen for myself--after frank conversation with my CNM I decided to trust her judgement as I had entrusted her for my care, while opting out of the ambien idea (ie getting induced at night and "ripening" overnight). I prefered to skip the sleep meds and labor and efface through the day--even though that could mean a long drawn out early labor process. It must have been maternal instinct but going in sat. morn. was probably the best thing we could have done...

So we got in right away, and I am given my saline lock (seriously, worst part for me--I nearly passed out--had to have oxygen and everything--and i've been so good during the pregnancy, you know, with all the blood draws) and administered the cytotec. I was 1 1/2 cm and 50%. My midwife came back around noon and checked and I was 70% effaced with no change in dilation. But it was good news that the cytotec was working the way it was supposed to. (we were warned induction could either work well (with only cytotec jumpstarting labor) or that we'd need other things ("interventions") to encourage dilation (the "balloon" or pitocin) and that it could last until monday morning. AH! (Though I am sooo thankful to have a care provider who was in no rush to get Asa out or to begin pitocin) I was given another dose of cytotec and was told she'd return at 4:30 to check me. My doula, Kate, encouraged me to take a nap at 3:00 since the possibility of laboring through the night was very possible. At 3:30, after having really manageable menstrual-like cramps from the beginning of the day, started having them strong in my back--I "breathed through my contraction" for the first time and things progressed extremely quick after that. Unfortunately, all was back labor--right in my tail bone! OW! but I was fortunate enough to have an incredible nurse, doula and seth to take care of me. My nurse suggested a TENS unit which I had entertained the thought of but kind of forgot about during pregnancy. It's a handheld machine with electrode-like pads that you put on your tum and back and you control these tiny shocks that interrupt the pain receptors and thus the pain you may experience. It sounds crazy, but it got me through the waves. I had contractions that were coming one after another from the very beginning. At 4:30 I was checked and was 6-7cm and 90%. Labor got very intense but my doula really helped guide my breathing so I was able to stay on top of the contractions (by really surrendering to them :). Because of the back labor, the toilet was my favorite spot to be. I moved there one last time around 7:30 and had a couple contractions, but then I automatically started grunting. My midwife showed up right in time. I guess she said, "there's the head!" Then my water broke. I think it was then that people encouraged me to get up to go to the bed, but as I started I could feel his head down there and I kind of fell down to my hands and knees (on the bathroom floor) and pushed through my contractions. Midwife was great and seemed completely fine with me not moving, though the nurses seemed concerned that we were remaining in the bathroom. There were moments of frantic activity as I concentrated on pushing and resting through the contractions: people ripping the TENS unit off ("we don't want any shocks!") and someone holding the doppler continuously on my tummy. But it was only like 10-15 minutes of pushing and he was out. SOOOOOO crazyyyyyyyy. Seth caught him and I pulled him up through my knees. It's incredible that as I recall this moment, all I can ever remember is muffled sound, bright bathroom light beaming on our little boy, bright eyed, looking all around, covered in vernix. Seth was right there with me, he was tearful, I was not; intstead I was completely stunned, pain-free, and completely overwhelmed by everything that had just happened. The baby nurse took him to be cleaned up. Asa had to be under some oxygen for a tiny bit because since he came out so quick, he didn't have time to have all the fluid squeezed out of his lungs!
As I returned to the bed to recover (lots of shaking--hormones do weird things) I noticed the clock I had unconciously been watching all day was missing off the wall. I asked, as if it was really important that the room had changed, "where is the clock?!" Apparently the baby nurse had it brought in to record the time of birth--the giant wall clock--which seemed kind of silly to me.
Once all was said and done, with Seth and Asa in the nursery, and me recovering with Kate, our nurse answered the knock at the door where my mom and sister were out in the hall. The nurse said, "um, brooke, your mom is wondering if your sister can come say hi." (Mind you, no one knew I had delivered yet--last they heard, I was 6-7cm....) I turned to Kate and we knew it was time to announce the news, completely uncoordinated and disorganized. My mom came in, and I said, "do you know what has happened? I had him. He's here." I thought Mom was going to need to sit down--she was shocked, and Kate ran out to announce the news somehow to Seth's parents.

It was the perfect birth. No amount of planning could have made it as good as it was.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Really, Any Day Now.

nothing too exciting today. but for the record:

How far along?
39 weeks plus, and i'm done.
How big is baby? last week's appointment they said he's kind of small. 6lbs 9oz. But everything looks fine and good according to the ultrasound and biophysical, so this is me being okay with trusting the doctor's opinions and not worrying about our peanut of a child.
Boy. I get a precious mini-Seth. I always said I wanted a million of them.......
Weight gain?
When I get weighed, I look at the ceiling, so, I have no idea. But according to how i look, I think it's probably in the 30ish range.
Symptoms? My stomach cramps, and tightens, and my round ligaments send shooting pain down my side, but nothing gives me an Asa.
Food cravings?
It was nutella, then french toast, and I've satisfied them all. Now I'm not really craving much. If anything maybe some good cereal--it's like I'm reverting back to the first trimester.
Sleep? Relatively good. I wake up during the night but if I can sleep till four, I can usually drift back to sleep. If it's before four I lay awake for at least and hour and a half. I have no idea. Movement? Oh he loves to move. alot. to the point where I think he's going to bust through the skin. it's a bit uncomfortable.
Stretch Marks? none, yet. but i've begun to itch so I'm not holding my breath for a second.
Belly Button? the top part is out, bottom part is flat. it's so weird
What I am looking forward to?
alot. i really want to see this squirmy little guy. and dress him up and walk around with him in a sling right next to me alllllllllll day. but i also want to lay on my tum, and hug with my whole body. im looking forward to breastfeeding. and going into labor. and pushing. kind of everything that gets me away from pregnancy.
Pregnancy Moments with Seth: I just love and will miss Seth's flabergasted expression when he see's my stomach twist and shift, and "good griefs" when Asa kicks HIM!

Belly Photo: i look and feel just like this *scary* picture

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Now, things can happen.

Sometimes I'm in a state of disbelief that I'm 38 weeks pregnant. That I can honestly say, "i should be able to make it, unless something else, say a baby comes up (or should i say, "out?")"

The nursery is done. All the essential components are finished, maybe not all things are put up or put away, but, we finished the cabinet. Thank you to all who contributed, especially since I couldn't do any of it.

Alrighty Asa, we're ready for you.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Waiting Game

It's a wednesday morning, and we just got back from our 37 week appointment. I've had a beautiful pregnancy and even though i know that being pregnant and having the baby inside is easier than having the baby outside....I am utterly miserable. I feel like I have hit the limits of my patience and I am kind of driving myself crazy. I want to meet our little son so badly, I want to see his face, I want to go through the adventure of giving birth, and then all the challenges of parenthood. With every contraction and tightening, with every kick, I start playing these mind games about when he'll come. Is this labor? It could be? Maybe this is the start....
The thing is, labor probably has started in a sense, my body is preparing for what it needs to do, but my temptation is to want to speed up the process. Sometimes, in these times when I'm hit with the reality of "this could happen anywhere from now until three weeks from now," I selfishly"get" why women would elect to schedule an induction -- YET at the same time this is another example of why pregnancy is another example of God's amazing creativity in design. How better to learn the disciplines of patience, of welcoming the unexpected stranger, and of simply being still, resting in His creation. I have been created to give birth a certain way, and Asa has been created to come out a certain way :) I have to surrender my own plans about what should be happening and when it should be happening and just go with the design. As simple as it is this is another opportunity to live Jeremiah 29:11 "11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

I am blessed to be able to partake in the blessing of motherhood and pregnancy. Intervening with the design is not proper, and I just have to remember, if nothing else, I've waited nine months, I can wait another week or two ;) Oh, and also, that I am doing the work I've been given to do--to grow a baby. Now it's time to rest in this work, knowing doing it is good.

I am participating in a miracle. I can wait another couple weeks....but I'm allowed to complain about my waddle.

ps.[Funny pregnancy thing week 37--I have a weekly outfit. With each new week, I have grown out of what previously has fit. So I get creative with my wardrobe, pick out one or two outfits and wear them all week. This week, it's a black dress with a belly band worn as a tube top. Next week will probably be Seth tank top with stretchy pants....oh man.]

Friday, August 12, 2011

I haven't written in a while. It could easily be that rather than sitting and collecting information and digesting and trying to make sense of it through writing, I have been really busy with preparing for our little son's birth. I've been nesting for weeks--making curtains and crib dusters and mobiles. They're nothing pretty but I'm really proud to have spent my time doing them myself.
I've noticed, as the months go on, Seth and I changing. As strange as this sounds I have seen our parental instincts surfacing as we engage with the children (and get this-animals) in our lives. From noticing Seth's super creative ways of interacting with our nephew during his birthday to my vigil watch over changes in my dog's (yeah, DOG's) behavior, I think we're slowly gearing up for this new stranger entering our lives.
I don't like the idea of preparing for welcoming Asa into our lives by having to say our final goodbyes with the life we know now. Maybe its because I'm overwhelmed enough as it is by the huge change having a kid will bring that I don't think it's necessary to have my "lasts." Maybe I want the "lasts" to happen without celebrating them as being "the last time doing [whatever] without a baby in my life." It's not like I'm kissing parties or bars or girls night outs goodbye. It's not like I need one final fling with my husband. As with marriage, where life changed, yet it changed for Good and it just was, I feel having a child will be similar. Things will change, but our lives have been moving slowly in this direction anyways. If I was to feel entitled to be independent (which as I write that word out--I'm sure I still feel this entitlement deep in my bones) then, yeah, motherhood would be a miserable existence. Just as marriage would be if I felt I had the right to be independent of my spouse. But you know, I don't really strive to buy into the our culture's strange obsession with independence.
Instead of saying "goodbye" to our lives, Seth and I are striving to make changes to our household--one of the biggest has been to keep the Sabbath. We hope to work well during the week and keep Sundays open to visiting with friends and family and rest. The other day we put another condition on our Sundays and I discussed with Seth something that has been convicting me as of lately. This condition involves no idle internet time--but I admitted that I felt that maybe I need to take some time from facebook. [doesn't everyone say the same thing?] At least, something needs to change. I don't know how I feel about posting everything about our growing family, especially after he comes. Which is difficult, as I love that about fb--the ability to share with people (as some of my closest friends live furthest away); I think I just need more restraint. This also calls into question what I want to do with photography (as that is also why I like facebook--it's a good discipline for me to always be shooting and making silly 'albums'). All this might include using it less or writing more or shooting with film or becoming alot more picky about my pictures and what I choose to show.
In all, it's an attempt at actual relationship. To people experiencing our family not by my words or how we look on film (or digital files) to what we do in action. How we interact with the world and community around us. Besides, the older I get (I know--I'm still pretty young) the more old fashioned I get (read: what's the point of style and fashion? why are there iphones? why are there kindles? i'll stop there, i don't want to get in trouble) and I want to keep my heart content with the limits we are faced with and I want Asa to know that we are content with the way we live--that it's okay to embrace these limits. Protecting my own heart by using my time wisely and on good things will hopefully keep our family from at least some of the pressures of the world.

I'm 35 weeks pregnant today. He's coming so soon. And I really just can't wait. I'm off to go sort baby clothes (for the third or fourth time :) in the nursery. Speaking of nursery: We are finishing up the final touches. The biggest project? Sanding, Priming, and painting our armoire. Thank goodness I have some help. :)

Inspecting one of Asa's [creepy] books

She's super Nani.

Happy Friday!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

What an Afternoon Off Looks Like

I am a student, once again. And being enrolled in a 4 week class in the middle of July means I can see August approach, with the promise of September (baby time) on its heels. Today I was able to do the work around the yard and even some photo work in addition to my linguistics readings.

Here's what I did after class and before our 30 wk appointment. [Fun note: I asked our midwife if she could tell where baby was situated and she said his head was down. Seth got to feel and in maybe a bit of disbelief exclaimed, "wow! it's big" and Lani joked, "well, don't tell her that!!"]

I spend at least some of every afternoon collecting our raspberries. Does anyone want fresh raspberries?

We have our own onions. I think I'm happier about this than Seth is.

Decided to do my own maternity pictures.

After pregnancy, I'll miss the nails.

Hydrangeas make me happier than any rose.

Although it doesn't look like it, the nursery is coming along--look at Seth's amazing paint job!!


I can't wait.