you may already be dreaming

31 weeks (last week)

I feel like I can't possibly get any bigger, but today I'm at 32 weeks, so I still have 8 to go, and only one way to grow - out! 
Today's my baby shower. I'm skipping church this morning . .  just relaxing at home. I worked late last night and couldn't get to sleep very well. Being huge makes it hard to fall asleep, especially when I wake up all over again every time I turn over. Yesterday a couple friends brought me a rocking chair, which I really wanted. It was a wonderful surprise! I sat in it and rocked for about ten minutes . . . long enough to worry my dog, who stood, whining, looking at me. Probably wondering how this chair was taking me so far away from him - I just sat there, staring out into space. Thinking about holding Finn, instead of only feeling him move inside me. 
God has blessed me greatly recently - he heard the desires of my heart and answered them. He's provided a way for me to stay home with the baby, so I just have to work until I take my maternity leave, at 38 weeks. I'm excited about leaving work. I can't yet imagine not worrying about brewing iced coffee, stocking the condiment bar, etc, but I'm sure it will be wonderful. Maybe a bit lonely, but hopefully I will reach out to community if I feel lonely. I have so many friends here who have expressed great interest in babysitting, or coming over to hang out with me and the baby. 
In a couple weeks we're taking a road trip to Michigan. I'll get to meet my pen pal for the first time, and attend her wedding. She and Scott have been friends for years, but I've never met her. We just write letters to one another. We'll also see a couple who has been really important in Scott's life, his good friends. I've never met them either, but I know they're great people. It will be a nice break from Missouri, that's for sure. 
Sometimes I feel so ready to have Finn in my arms that I forget about the labor part. The other day was the first time I doubted my choice to have a natural birth, simply because I felt annoyed at the thought of all that pain standing in between me and my baby. Truthfully, though, I'm still bent on natural birth, and I know the process will be wonderfully, though hard. A rite of passage, a step into womanhood, a shared experience between me and the baby. Just two months away . . . 


don't get lost in heaven

Need to get this all out so I can sleep tonight. 
Tonight in prenatal yoga we talked about our fears. Erica, our teacher, talked about how we as people, and as women, tend to just sweep our fears under the rug, because we don't want to 'give them too much energy', or 'make them come true', etc. She talked about the importance of acknowledging our fears, and sitting with them. We each shared with the class the fears we are experiencing, we cried and laughed together. This yoga class has grown me and healed me in deep ways, especially because my closest friends are not pregnant, and have not yet been, so I feel like a pioneer in the field of pregnancy. I shared my fear of feeling alone, because I have felt that often while pregnant, for a few reasons. The one I just stated, which is having no close friends experiencing the same things, has been difficult, but there are women I am acquaintances with here that just had babies, and they have been of help. Another is that Scott has been extremely busy with school and work. I am so proud of him for his hard work and his discipline, but I admit that I feel lonely more often than not. Our time together is very quality, and our communication has improved. I might even say we've managed to grow closer during the pregnancy despite our differing schedules, but I have felt lonely all the same. I fear feeling this for the next year, while he toils away at nursing school. I'm already looking forward to August 2009 when he gets done with school, and then he'll just have a job. Imagine that - Scott just having a job. He'll work 3 or 4 days at the hospital, 12 hour shifts, and then have the rest of his days free. He will be able to have hobbies and family life again. I'm excited for all of us for the future. Until then, though, he'll have school all day every day, work in the evenings or weekends, and studying in every spare moment. The plan is for me to return to work, because we'll need the extra money, and we'll need my awesome health insurance. That means finding a daycare, someone I trust, someplace convenient, not too expensive, etc. It means pumping and storing breast milk while at my job, because I won't be able to nurse every few hours on days I have to work. It means finding a balance between asking Scott for help with the baby and giving him the space he needs to study. This next year will be all of these things, and honestly, I am afraid of it all. 
What I really want is the financial stability to be able to stay home with the baby. I want to be at home and able to feed him every couple of hours, I want to take care of the house and run the errands and not have to go to a job where I make lattes for sorority girls. 
The cost of childcare would nearly negate the extra income I would make, and we'd have baby costs on top of that, so I don't know if it's worth it, financially, for me to work. My health insurance is better, though, and the only way we could make it without me working is probably if we took out more student loans. I wonder if it would be worth it. To me, there's no question, but it might be a different story for Scott, if he's the one having to work full time once he gets done with school. He and I obviously need to have another conversation about this. I have expressed my feelings to him before, but I thought that as time went by, maybe I would feel more peace about going back to work. I don't. I feel grief at the thought of having to spend the first year of my baby's life working instead of being at home with him. It just doesn't feel right to me. 
Enough. I could run myself in circles all night with these thoughts. I'd rather try to go to sleep, so I can get up early for work tomorrow. I'm praying for a miracle regarding our finances. I'm praying for a clear answer on whether it's worth the potential debt to have me stay at home and be with the baby instead of go back to work. I'm praying about what is wise, and not forcing what I want just because I want it, but knowing what is truly wise to choose.