FAQ’s

F.A.Q. 4x over

F.A.Q.’s about our Baby Surprise

(P.S. it may be helpful to read my last post, first).

**When is your due date?

On paper, March 3, 2018.  but I think we all know that my babies don’t exactly like to come on time, or even on their own for that matter (save for Bea, God bless her).  Trying to go into it with an open mind and low expectations.  (Last time was hard because we were fighting with Bea’s birthday).  This one is actually pretty close to my birthday (March 1), yes, we have a thing for butting up to birthdays!  But I actually don’t mind, really.  I didn’t want the girls to share one, or even with a holiday for that matter, but my own doesn’t really stress me out.  There are no holidays within sight of that date (save for Valentine’s day, which is PRETTY EARLY) and I’m sad this was my one shot at a leap year babe, but not possible for 2018.  Oh well!

Also, funny story, after the initial shock and excitement had worn off from telling my family, both my mom and sister said, almost in unison, “it’s not due in May, is it?”  We all had a good laugh when we said no, that would not logically make sense.  But their fears were valid.  After having three babies added to our family in short succession, all within fives calendar days of each other, we are thankful to not have another May baby this time!

**I thought you were done?

Ha!  We did too. Heart, mind, and body closed off to the idea of a 4th.  It’s true that in the past we had thought we may have 4, but something changed in me after Sibby came along and I was able to emotionally close that door and move on.  N followed shortly after me.  

There were a lot of thoughts that went into this:

1) I don’t handle pregnancy, particularly the first 12 weeks and the last 4 weeks very well

2) MG is getting older and in a different stage of life.  It felt more freeing to follow that and move the other two girls into that than to hit the “reset” button in a few years

3) My body still had not recovered from Sibby’s birth (or the past 8 months of sleep regression), and I was looking forward to continuing down that path rather than start over with another pregnancy, plus, I knew it was physically impossible for us to get pregnant at this time without help and I didn’t want to seek that out (thankfully God knew better)

4) we liked the identity we had created as an “all-girl” family of three girls.  We had big plans for the three to share a room, and we had starting making long term plans about places we wanted to take our three and big moments we wanted to share with them.

And just to show you that we really had not planned this, if the above doesn’t convince you, we had also put down a non-refundable deposit on a vacation in April 2018 as well as signed up for a mini-marathon that same month.  This pregnancy was not on our radar :).

I think in some ways, it also felt selfish to have another.  Four is a large number and I felt incapable of loving four, little individuals, each with unique personalities, well.  I also worried about babysitters watching four and felt sure that no one would invite us over to their house for dinner (6 extra mouths to feed!)

I think it’s important to share that it wasn’t planned, at least not by us, because I believe in my heart that it is a miracle we are pregnant right now.  I still had the same infertility issues that had followed me after MG’s birth, making it impossible to get pregnant without some medical help for both Bea and Sib. 

Following Sib’s birth, I had watched my body closely to see if it would miraculously bounce back this time and up until the days I took the positive pregnancy test, everything was lining up to be just as bad as before, if not worse.

I was also breastfeeding during this pregnancy, which is a first for me, and should have hurt my chances even more.  

But in a way, it gives us a lot of peace to know that this decision was not ours, especially in the hard moments.  God foresaw all of this and still saw fit to put us in charge of raising another little life.  And for that we can only feel awed and grateful.

I hope you don’t find this deceptive, but I continued to write on my blog as if nothing had changed.  We found out about this pregnancy in early July and it took me all of that month and some of the next to let it sink in, process it, and be able to talk about it.  I guess I’m not one to be good with surprises 🙂

**Have you felt sick?

Y’all know my last three pregnancies were the pits, especially in the first trimester and this one has been no different.  Well, a little different.  Another amazing miracle of this pregnancy is that I have not had to supplement the progesterone hormone pills!  So this pregnancy has been more reminiscent of MG’s.  I am so grateful because even though I have felt like death many, many times over the course of 4-13 weeks, I have been given moments of breaks and relief from it, two things I did not have with Bea’s and Sib’s.  Particularly in the mornings, I would wake up feeling normal, even though I would need some carbs and a nap about two hours later.

Honestly, worse than the nausea has been the fatigue.  It kind of put a damper on the summer because I almost had to nap everyday and also go to bed at 9pm.  That really cuts out a lot of my free time.  Getting lunch and dinner on the table everyday has been a STRUGGLE (ironically, mornings are usually the times I feel the best).  Thankfully, though N didn’t have a true summer break, his schedule was very light and he’s been a huge support to me (as he has been in all of my pregnancies).

It has also been a huge support to have my family nearby.  And I think that might be another reason God allowed us to have a fourth because we have such a good support system.  My sister (bless her, she has a 3 month old!) took the girls some and my mom did too, giving me moments to nap and breathe without trying to keep my energy up for the girls.

**Do the girls know?

Yes they do!  They found out at about 5 weeks actually, when we told my parents.  They were really cute about it and Bea kept saying, “wait, who’s baby is this?”  A valid question because Mary just had her baby, and really I did too! (Sib)

It seems like just yesterday Bea was praying for “Mommy’s baby tummy” (her cute 3 year old prayer for the baby in my tummy-Sib, which was still prayed many months after she was born). We finally convinced her to pray for “Aunt Mary baby tummy” and now it’s my turn again.

They did a pretty good job of keeping it a secret (other than blurting it out to some family–an approved, but still unexpected moment!)

**Speaking of Sib…

Yes, this baby and Sib will be my closest in age!  Less than 2 years!!  Twenty-two months apart, or actually twenty one depending on what side of the due date she falls on. Even though I desired that closeness my first go around with Bea and MG, I grew to love that 2.5 year spread and pushed it even further to 3 years between Bea and Sib. That was so nice for my body and also for the youngest child to have some time of maturing and independence before baby arrived, but we didn’t get so “lucky” this time.  We, more than likely, will have two in diapers, two in pacis, and two in cribs.  Crazy!

But, if I had chosen the spread, I don’t think I would have wanted to do a 3 year gap again, just because I was hopeful for a playmate for Sib (and the closer in age, the easier that seems to be to foster, at least when they are young).  I already didn’t like that she was 3 years behind Bea and with MG & Bea being so tight, I knew it would take a while for Sib to catch up.  I remember once telling N that if we have a fourth, lets do it close in age to Sib so that she can have a buddy like MG & Bea.  Then we both did the math and realized how soon I would have to get pregnant again to accomplish that and quickly did away with the idea.  But now here we are, and we are focusing on the positives.  Like a friend for Sib!

**Do you have a name and will you share?

Just like the last three times, we will keep our names REALLY close to our chests.  I will be devastated if the name leaks out before baby is born because I really enjoy the moment of the trumpeting announcement.  

That being said, we don’t have a firm, write-it-in-stone (or even embroider-it-on-a onesie) name yet. We are still climbing up and down our family tree, looking at different meanings and past moments of importance for our family as inspiration.  This has been the first time that we haven’t had a set name (for a boy or a girl!), but it’s been kind of fun to focus on in the interim

–Oh and by the way, it’s a girl!

I didn’t say that earlier but we found out on Thursday evening, August 24 that we are expecting girl #4!  I have to say I wasn’t exactly shocked.  The intuition was high for this one.  Maybe because I’ve only carried girls so I was already in that mindset, but I just had a really strong feeling that this was another one. My cravings were nearly exact.  My nausea was lighter BUT I wasn’t on extra hormones.  There were many similarities, and a few differences, but the thing that I always go back to is the Ramzi theory* at 8 weeks, and once again it proved to be correct for us. (*too long to explain here, but there is plenty of Google fodder if you are interested :))

–so how do you feel about all girls?

Well, some people don’t believe us when we say this, but we were actually pulling for a fourth girl. It just made the future easier to envision, plus all the clothes and toy hand-me-downs (and let’s not forget the matching!).  Of course, a boy would have been wonderful and we would have been so excited for something different (and he would have had a very close in age boy cousin who lives “down the street”), but in my heart of hearts, I was hoping for girl.  N would say the same.  We already get a lot of comments about “four girls”, “all girls”, etc, but we have embraced it and made it a part of our family identity.  And we love it.  We are so excited for this little girl to join the “sisterhood” and see who she most looks like and who she most attached to (and if it changes through the years).

Bea will no longer be our true middle child, she will now share this trait with Sib.  And we like that we are swinging back over into an even family as it could mean easier room sharing and buddying up without anyone getting left out (at least in theory).

The odds were not in our favor to have four of the same gender, but we feel pretty “lucky” the way the dice rolled this time.

-smk

School house FAQ’s

Here are some common questions that arise about our house:

So a school house, you say? yes, it was originally a one room school house, built in 1869. The couple we bought it from, we’ll call them the B’s, purchased it in 1989 and turned it into a live able house. Something I appreciate about them is they kept the integrity of the building and didn’t compromise it by changing the exterior much, if at all. They did add a garage but used old brick from a hospital built around the same time frame that had been torn down. The addition (to my eyes) is seamless.

So how many acres is it 9!!!!

And what will you do with them? well currently 6 is being rented by a farmer who grows crops on them. That is fine by us because right now we have no business farming or attempting to take care of that much land. Later down the road we may turn the land into some kind of profitable revenue or we may build another house on it or we may just use a portion of it for a large garden and animals. Just not sure yet but having possibilities to dream about sure is fun!

So are you going to home school now? haha, very funny!

Bats? no!!!!

And just for fun, here are some things going on in the world the year our house was built:

-the beginning of women’s rights
-Ulysses s Grant became the 18th president
-the periodic table was presented
-the first transcontinental railroad was built
-Cincinnati red stockings become the first professional baseball team
-the first lethal steam car accident; first mechanically propelled accident
-first game of college football
-North Pole was discovered
-Jesse James robbed his first bank
-the Wyoming territory gives women the right to vote: first vote of it’s kind in the world
-war and peace published
-DNA discovered
-Henri mattise was born

If those walls could talk….

-smk

FAQ’s

Not that I think I’m some sort of celebrity with a FAQ section,

but the truth is, as soon as you announce your pregnancy, you tend to get asked a lot of the same questions.

Like:

1) How are you feeling? Terrible.  Can I be honest? Absolutely terrible.  I’ve been nauseated morning, noon, and night since 5.5 weeks.  I’ve had a few days of reprieve in recent weeks, most notably around weeks 9-10, but it came back with a vengeance last week.  Consider that this reprieve came after 32 days of feeling like I was on the verge of food poisoning.  I hate to complain, but seeing as how I haven’t been able to vomit out all of my sickness, I’m going to vomit out my feelings.  Even my “good days” aren’t in reality all that great.  A good day is waking up feeling normal, eat breakfast, two hours later feel nauseated.  Eat whatever carbs are on hand that haven’t already been deemed adverse in order to slay it.  Repeat every two hours.  This must be timed well with bedtime otherwise,  tossing and turning will be met with a rolling stomach.

 

But that is considered a good day because I don’t have to function with the constant nagging feeling that I am going to vomit everywhere.  Add onto this: extreme fatigue, raging hormones, and eating things that the inside of my body rarely sees.  These things mingled together have put me in somewhat of a depressive funk.  I just haven’t felt like myself in weeks.  And that has surprisingly(?)  caught me off guard. However, the light is at the end of the tunnel.  This trimester ends on Saturday and it can only get better from here, right?

 

That is my honest answer to that question, however, I hope it doesn’t diminish the fact that this pregnancy was so desired and longed-for.  I know that there are many women who would do anything to have a bout of morning sickness.  I feel you. So please don’t take this in any way as ungratefulness.  

 

2) Were you sick with your first? Yes and no.  With MG, I got sick on the exact same day, 5.5 weeksinto it.  I threw up a lot more in the beginning, but I think that’s just because I didn’t realize that eating somehow curbs the puking.  It’s a very weird thing.  I just don’t remember it lasting this long or being this intense.  Maybe that’s because I wasn’t chasing around a toddler at the time or maybe it’s because this time I was on a progesterone supplement (which they say magnifies your symptoms)  Or maybe it’s just because it is the second. Who really knows?  It’s a very strange thing.

 

3) Do you have any cravings?  Just like last time, cravings and aversions both.  Cravings come on strong and must.be.satisfied.asap.  Mostly to comfort foods: mac and cheese, biscuits and gravy, avocadoes, peanut butter, turkey sandwiches, pb&j’s,  cheese.etc.  The most surprising has been mayo.  Not like I want to eat it plain or anything (sick!), but I want it on sandwiches and find myself dreaming about things that are made from it.  Surprising because non-pregnant me sees mayo and wants to gag.   But somehow it becomes not only acceptable, but desirable come pregnancy.

Once a craving has been obtained, and deemed desirable, I must have it one other time.  And one other time only. After that, the craving has officially been satisfied and I do not want to see it ever.again.  Aversions have been to meat, vinegar-y things, sweets that aren’t sour, and anything with a strong odor.  Most unfortunately, this time of year I usually gorge myself on PSL’s, Reese’s pumpkins, and copious handfuls of mallow-creme pumpkins.  This year, I haven’t had a single bite/sip.  Not even a candy corn.  I think I’ll buy a couple of bags on clearance and save them for when I am finally in the mood.  Such a shame to be sick during this time of year.

4) Does MG know that she is going to be a big sis? Nope.  She has absolutely no concept of it.  She is a sweet and nurturing little soul to her babies, so I’m really hoping that trait pays off.    Worthy of note: recent time spent with a few newborns definitely shows some jealousy issues springing up.  Trying to figure out now how best to handle this.  Any advice?
5) Are you going to find out what you are having?  YES!  No part of me wants to wait.  I want to find out early and often.  Which always leads too…

 

6) Do you have a preference?  I’d be lying if I said I/we didn’t.  I’m sure I’ll share more on that later.

 

7) Do you have any inklings? Yes.  More on that later too.  But let’s not forget, I was wrong last time.

 

8) Do you have a name picked out?  Of course!  I’m too much of a planner to leave that one to whim.  In fact, shortly after MG was born, I felt the burning desire to name siblings for her.  Only because I wanted to make sure I would like them for a lengthy amount of time.

We are both highly attached to our girl name and have settled on a boy name too.  I also have two alternates, one boy and girl.  Have I ever mentioned how I have a peculiar fascination with baby names?  I’m sure I’ll touch on that later.  Until then, we’ve decided to call it Mayby (and if a certain pop song did NOT just make its way through your head, consider yourself a winner in the pop culture wars!  seriously, I am envious)

 

9) Are you sharing it?  Uh-uh.  Nope.  Sorry.  Just like last time, we will keep you in suspense till the bitter (and considering the way my body loves to be pregnant), I do mean bitter end.

 

10) Will you consider the epidural this time?  Consider it?  Yes.  Beg for it again?  Probably.  To say I haven’t been more than a little preoccupied with the thought of back labor and lengthy pushes again would be a lie.  Last time was different.  Last time I was blissfully naive.  This time, I have to have a solid gameplan in place or else I’m going to spend the next 6 months paralyzed in pre-labor purgatory.  Part of that gameplan has been to switch doctors to a practice that will give me up to two weeks before forcing an induction (of course pending on the baby’s and my health) and to a hospital that will allow me to have access to a birthing tub (not to give birth in which is illegal here, but to labor in).   The birthing tub is my focal point.  It is the one thing I did not get to try last time and I think it would have made a world of difference in my pain management.  At least that is what I am hyping myself up with.  Second babies come faster and easier…right?  RIGHT?  Did you hear that, Mayby?  Mama is counting on you!

 

Thanks for your interest (whether intentional or not!) friends,

Personal note: Of course now that I have shared my  exciting news, I have a whole host of new topics to discuss!  But my basic blog philosophy will remain the same…I’ll still be sharing glimpses of our life, new mama advice, cute pics of MG etc.  Plus, I really want to share the entire story of our Mayby.  I’m working on it, but I still need some time to do it justice.  So hang in here with me as I interrupt our regularly scheduled programming with some pregnancy-related stuff.  But know that I‘m still the same Sweet Mama K.  Just with a little spring in my step and bump on my belly 🙂