This is the stage of pregnancy when it seems like everyone is saying how fast it went and how close I am to meeting the baby. And it’s so true. But in the middle of pregnancy, five more weeks sounds like an eternity. My first two kids were both induced past their due date, so I am trying not to even think this buddy might come early. Five more weeks.
It’s funny how with this third baby, I feel more emotionally disconnected from whoever this little boy might be. Evelyn and Thomas are so dynamic and mentally consuming that I haven’t had much chance to daydream about our third. The thing that has gotten me most excited is looking through their hospital and baby pictures, comparing it to how they’ve grown in just a couple years. I’m more in love with them today than I was when I was pregnant or first met them in the hospital. And that potential for love makes me eager for this new little one, whoever he might be. I wonder if other moms feel this way too?
On a recent date, Zach and I were talking about what we are grateful for this year. I think we both came on the date on edge from an intense season of parenting and work and anticipating the work to come with busy season and a newborn arriving at the same time. I know I have been complaining and tired from pregnancy aches and pains, and each day I feel wrung out just from keeping up with the kids. So gratitude was the perfect topic to cut through any sarcasm and negativity.
Last week marked one year in our home. In that time we’ve not only moved, but also both changed jobs and found out we were having another baby. It’s been a whirlwind of a year. I learned from our first home that it takes time to make a space feel settled and homey. After about three years in our little bungalow, it really felt like ours. Thanks to a lot of help and a little extra push from this baby’s arrival, this house is so much closer to what I pictured in my head than I ever thought it would be after one year. I’m incredibly grateful for home – the calmness that welcomes and blankets you each time you walk in the door. I cherish the memories we’ve made already and that we’ll get to welcome one of our babies into this house. I’m grateful for the neighbors who make our little street in the middle of the city feel safe and friendly.
Zach’s new job has been a blessing to our family, and it definitely did not feel like that when we first found out about the change in April. Our family and friends buoyed us through the hard times and gave us kindness after kindness. Zach and I weathered one of our biggest challenges as a team, and each year I grow to love him more. My mom especially has been such a huge support for me. I’m grateful that after all the teenage drama, she has become one of my dearest friends. And even a simple thing like this beautiful fall with warm days, stretching all the way to mid-November, feels like a gift.
Turning 30 this year was something I looked forward to, bringing a sense of permanency and gravitas that the 20s aren’t known for. I learned so much about myself, our marriage, work, and parenting in my 20s. It was a decade of introspection and winnowing down to what was important to our family to siphon off the excess. I hope that maybe we can rest a bit in the work we’ve done. Ironically, my 30th birthday was an absolute disaster outside of a fun dinner with girlfriends – food poisoning, epic night of both kids throwing up, a surprise pregnancy test on the eve of the end of busy season, and throwing out my back. Nothing like that to make you feel your age.
After all the whirlwind of change, I’m mostly grateful for the hope that remains in my heart. Some days it is harder to remember, and I still have some apprehension about the winter, postpartum hormones and hair loss, but expectancy and hope are like my light at the end of the tunnel. Faith is the underlying current that has been carrying us all year. While Zach and I have both gone through some of the stages of grief over all the unasked-for change, I am starting to see that God is crafting a better story than we would have ever chosen. He isn’t safe, but he is good.
Five more weeks, here we go. #getaftergrateful.
p.s. Gift Guides are starting on Monday!