Maternity photos and third-trimester diary

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My wonderful friend Brittany Evans recently captured another chapter in our pregnancy journey with these maternity photos! As promised in my last post, I am sharing them here along with another quick update on pregnancy and life to fulfill my ever-present need to ramble. She also featured a few of her favorites on her own blog post, which you can see here.

0-2As for that update:

I waddle now. I have SPD (Symphis pubis dysfunction) and it is worse on some days than others. I’m still trying to figure out whether exercise exacerbates the pain or helps; I honestly think it completely depends on the day.

Christian recently came up with a reading list for himself before the baby gets here that includes books with child-rearing topics, personal betterment practices, and that are just overall educational about fostering success and intelligence. I think it’s so cute (and smart!) how prepared he wants to be. He just re-read The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell as part of this list, and now I am reading it. 0-3

 

We are still trying to decide on baby girl’s middle name, and keep going back and forth between a few different options that we like. We think we know her first name for sure – and have for so long now – but who knows, it could still change when we see her!

I cannot – and I truly mean cannot – stop eating chocolate. Yikes. Christian keeps diligently trying to get me to eat something like an avocado (“Omega-3 fatty acids babe!”) whenever I am about to open a Reece’s peanut butter cup, but alas,  I am rarely persuaded. Or should I say dissuaded.

I’ve been obsessed with Youtube
“labor and delivery” vlogs and “life with a newborn/ newborn essentials” videos throughout my pregnancy0-5, and they have honestly been so helpful as well as entertaining, and make me feel like I’m somehow preparing myself for what’s ahead even while I’m merely sitting in front of my ipad. I think it’s so cool that some people are willing to open up their private worlds to the public like that, because it can truly help make you feel so understood and connected to someone who might be in your same circumstance, even when you’re unable to find that same connection in the geographical location or physical space you occupy.

Some of my favorite Youtube channels/youtubers these past few months have been Olivia Zapo (so much good baby content), Kitty Cotten (for baby essentials), The Hypnobirthing Midwife channel, Wildbird’s and Sollybaby’s channels (for babywearing tutorials), any video with Dr. Harvey Karp (aka the baby whisperer and Author of “Happiest Baby on the Block”) in it, and a ton of random Youtube vloggers who have shared their labor and delivery vlogs on the platform. I’ve also loved SarahBethYoga for my prenatal yoga routines.

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I’ve had a really wonderful pregnancy – with minimal morning sickness and discomfort in the first trimester, a renewal of energy and positive, excited emotions during my second trimester, and a good start to my third trimester.

But months 8 and 9? I can’t lie: They have been pretty uncomfortable. Some days are of course better than others and I will wake up feeling normal – less like a beached whale and more like myself. But on the ‘bad’ days, I feel large and unsightly and just itchy and sore in my own skin. It’s a strange sensation, because your body really feels foreign and cumbersome. This part is more what I imagined my entire pregnancy would be like based on movies and what I remember hearing from pregnant women growing up, and yet, you really can’t imagine the sensations and strangeness of it all until you experience it for yourself.

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I also wanted to share something that I find difficult to describe, just for the sake of honestly. I cannot, somehow, get it through my head (at least visually) that an actual baby is residing in my belly. It’s so hard to explain – but I think it’s hard for me to associate the love and attachment I feel for this baby, which I currently view as a baby bump, with an actual baby, because I can’t imagine or conjure up an image of her (as I have no idea what she looks like)! I have had a hard time making sense of the way she’s all curled up in there, and attributing the movements I feel all over my watermelon-taut belly with certain body parts of hers.

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I might’ve made a mental breakthrough the other day, however.

This was made possible because Christian tried to create a visual for me by doing a headstand and showing me how the baby is positioned. While upside down, he tried to indicate to me how she can be kicking over near my right ribs with one foot, above my belly button with her left, and still punching away at the lower part of my abdomen with tiny fists. Well, he showed me with his rather large fists and flailing legs, but I was able to convert them to scale in my mind. 😉 It was SO sweet of him and also completely hilarious to witness. We both had a good belly laugh. Have any of you other moms/pregnant women felt this way before your baby was born?! I truly think I might be the only one, haha.

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Just the other day I had the most intense feeling come over me where I kind of whispered to myself: “I can’t wait to be a mom.” My days flip flop between being slightly anxiety-filled with wondering whether anyone else who’s pregnant could possibly feel as clueless as I do, and feeling completely full of overwhelming love and feverish excitement. It was good to revel in that moment of wonderment and confidence when contemplating motherhood, because obviously not every day holds that same sentiment.

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I have this feeling that our baby is going to come around 38 or 39 weeks. Call me crazy optimistic to think that our first baby would come right when I expect her to, let alone early, but I’m hoping it’s more like clairvoyance. 😉 Although…. at the very same time I feel like she is safe and content in my massive (probably comfy) belly right now, and the thought of changing that status and of having a whole new normal is quite overwhelming. So let’s just say I’m one big pregnant mess of contradicting emotions.

God bless my husband, for real.

But also – as I’m the one currently carrying around and sustaining a whole extra person right now, giving her what she needs to thrive and grow every single minute in spite of all this mental strife – God bless me too?!

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Xoxo,

Kayla

1 Comment

  1. Hi Michaela – What a special treasure your maternity pictures are. Everything about them are beautiful, but mostly, the happiness that your friend was able to capture in you and Christian’s faces. I’m sure your daughter will cherish these for years to come, and of course, so will you. Motherhood is one of God’s greatest gifts. Thanks for letting us share in your journey! Congratulations! (my advice: don’t get too wrapped up into what people say you NEED to have, or HAVE to do. Do what works for your family and lifestyle. You two will be great parents, and baby is very lucky!)

    Like

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