Baby #4: First Trimester Pregnancy Update

In case you missed the Instagram announcement, Dan and I are excited to be expecting Baby #4 sometime this fall/winter. Our due date is December 19th, and our doctor has high hopes that we’ll make it to 37 weeks this time (a TERM baby!) which would put Baby’s birthday around the end of November (November 28th).

At our initial doctor visit, I was less than six weeks along but we could see a tiny little heart beat pulse on the ultrasound machine. I’ve never had an ultrasound that early before. It was hard to recognize our little girl/guy.

The first question everyone asks when they hear the news is: “Are you going to find out this time?” You may know already, we found out ahead of time that Abby and Lydia were girls, but we waited to be surprised with Paul. I loved being surprised and Dan didn’t mind the wait, so we’re waiting again this time. I guess you’ll all just have to wait with us. I have an inkling suspicion that it’s a girl, but, for the record, I’ve been wrong with every single baby so far. 😛

So far, this pregnancy has been the most difficult, with more nausea and food aversions than my other three. Then again, I’m also chasing around three Little Ones this time and I don’t get nearly as long of naps. I’ve been particularly disgusted by lentils, and for several weeks I couldn’t tolerate most foods. There haven’t been a ton of strong cravings, mostly little ones: ice in my water, nectarines, and simple sandwiches with tomato, mustard, and lettuce. I’ve felt well enough to handle breakfasts, but then I’ve been unable to eat much of anything come lunch time. After nap time I’ve felt the worst, and I usually haven’t felt better until after the kids are in bed. Then Dan teases me while I make whatever sort of dinner sounds good to me at the time. Lately, I’ve had a humongous craving for cottage cheese.

I had my second prenatal appointment at eight weeks and everything looked good. (That’s the ultrasound in the Instagram pic.) My third appointment was at twelve weeks, but Baby was measuring closer to thirteen. That was also my pre-op appointment for a minor surgery performed a week and a half later. It’s the same surgery I had with Paul, and the procedure that will hopefully help me carry this baby even longer. My next appointment isn’t until July 12th (17 weeks).

So, other than the difficulty eating, this pregnancy really is flying by. The kids keep me so busy and our summer is just so full of activities, that right now I’m distracted enough that I’m not counting the days. I’ve been trying to cook and freeze meals here and there, but it’s been nothing compared to last time because I’ve been struggling to cook much of anything anyway. Hopefully we won’t really need those freezer meals until after Baby is born!

Pleasant Surprises: 29 Week Pregnancy Update

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Well, after the last update I wasn’t sure I would make it to this one! But, here we are, two weeks later and Baby is still staying put.

After the last ultrasound and prenatal appointment, Dan took over the household chores and I resigned myself to sitting around all day. By the end of the first week I was getting pretty bored. On Saturday, Dan let me ride along to the library and to Meijer and sit in the car while he picked up books and some groceries. These Saturday outings have since become a highlight in my week. Is that sad?

In fact, last week Dan wasn’t feeling particularly well so we stayed home from Bible study on Wednesday. By the time Saturday rolled around I realized that I hadn’t stepped foot outside the house since Sunday. Yes, I certainly have been taking it easy.

To fill my time I have been clearing out our old computer (it runs much faster now) and reading a lot. Some books I read by myself, some books I read out loud to the girls, and some books I read out loud while the girls play. I’m not sure they’re really listening to the stories but when I stop reading Lydia corrects me, “No, read louder!”. Dan and the girls have also been hearing the stories of all my reading during our meal times.

Every morning Lydia prays that God would “please help Baby not be born today”. Every morning and evening I pray the same. And every night Dan prays that Baby would not come during the night. Someday we’ll be happy to receive Baby, but not yet!

Last Wednesday I had another checkup and we were thrilled to find out that some of the “labor is approaching” signs have actually reversed themselves. We’re doing about 14 different things to try to keep baby in there and at least one of them seems to be working! Baby, for the second consecutive ultrasound, is measuring 2 weeks big.

Here are the pictures from our appointment. The top picture is Baby’s abdomen, which we measure to get a guess on Baby’s size. The bottom picture is Baby’s face (forehead on the right, chin on the left in the shadows) looking right at you. It’s a little hard to tell, but the most prominent part is Baby’s nose. (I’ve found that it’s much easier to decipher Baby’s face if you actually turn your head to the right).

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Friday was a huge milestone, the gestation when Abby was born. Yes, Baby made it successfully past the 28 week, 4 day mark and then yesterday to the 29 week mark. Lydia was born at 30 weeks and 6 days, which is in less than two weeks. If the ultrasounds are correct and Baby really is two weeks big for his/her age, this Baby could be the biggest one yet.

So there have been a lot of exciting developments. Our next appointment isn’t until February 16, when Baby will be 31 weeks. Our doctor will actually be on vacation February 8 – February 14, so we are earnestly hoping Baby does come until after he gets back.

Here are the latest numbers:

2 days until my oldest sister is due with her Baby!
6 days until Baby reaches 30 weeks.
9 days until my other sister is due with her Baby!
12 days until Baby reaches Lydia’s birth age, 30 weeks and 6 days.
13 days until our next appointment.
20 days until our goal, 32 weeks.

(Yes, all three of us sisters are pregnant at the same time and only time will tell what order our babies are born in!)

On one hand, each day is an adventure. My belly is stretching so much more than ever before that it hurts every night and often during the day. Baby hardly has room in there to move around, and when s/he does it’s not at all comfortable for Mommy. All of the aches and pains are good reminders that Baby is making it longer, but also good reminders that Baby could come any day or night.

On the other hand, life it pretty uneventful. We sit, we read, we lay down, we take naps, we go to bed early. And by “we” I really mean me and Baby. Dan is working like a madman trying to do everything he does, everything I used to do, and more. As crazy as things are for him and as exciting or boring as things get for me, we are thankful for each day that Baby is not in the NICU and we are trusting God to keep Baby safe and warm for as long as possible.