The Waiting Days

Our coffee table is filled with pregnancy and breastfeeding books. The laundry room smells like Dreft and there are little folded onesies, burp cloths, and blankets covering the dining room table. The car seat is installed, the camera is charged, and our bags are sitting beside the back door, ready for the big day. Every corner of our house holds something to do with a baby, and here I sit on the couch, full of emotion and expectation, ready yet apprehensive. Our world currently revolves around this baby. Waiting for him or her. Waiting in the between moments, while this babe is already mine, yet not quite here yet. I've been told to soak in these moments. I've been told to make the most of these last few days of just me and my husband. Easier said than done, I'm learning the hard way. But these in between moments are beautiful and necessary, preparing my heart and my body for what's to come and I'm so thankful that the Lord is giving us these sweet, precious days together.

I'll never forget these sacred waiting days.

We're a little over a week away from our due date. Those words strung together make me nervous and so excited all at once--it also makes me wish I could rewind and savor every single moment a little more. And maybe actually post about this pregnancy like the good "blogger" I know I should've been! It's flown by. Even though the days may have been long, the weeks and months were short, and here we are, waiting to meet this little one any day now. I get really sentimental over the little things now--"This could be our last date night with just the two of us!" or "Maybe today is the last day I'll feel these kicks and rolls." And then I get all teary and wish I could stay pregnant forever.

I remember the day I found out I was pregnant like it was yesterday. I remember looking at the "pregnant" on the screen of the test and just staring at it for what seemed like an eternity, because I didn't think it could actually be true. I remember wanting to cry happy tears and yet being so afraid at the same time--we had waited for so many months and prepared, or so I thought, for this moment, and yet, when it actually came, it didn't feel real. I remember blinking over and over, trying to clear my eyes to make sure I was seeing it right. I didn't feel ready for that moment; it was a moment that changed my life forever.

all maternity photos courtesy of the amazing Faison Anne Photography
I sat there and cried. I muttered, "thank you, Jesus," over and over again. Life was forever different, right then and there.

And then I thought about my sweet husband sitting in the next room, unbeknownst to what I was doing in the bathroom right then. His life was about to change too. All I wanted to do was tell him he was going to be a dad--scream it from the rooftop. Finally, it said "pregnant" and that prayer we had been praying had finally been answered. I remember thinking, "Whew, now I can relax and just enjoy this journey--the worrying is over!" I laugh at that sentiment now. Life changed then and there. Little did I know that the worry was really just beginning!

This sweet babe will be here any day now, and I have equally strong emotions of wanting to meet him/her and yet still wanting to savor these days with the babe on the inside. I know I'll soon be missing this belly and feeling that sweet, sacred bond between the two of us with the many movements I feel throughout our days. But oh, how ready I am to call this baby by name. To hold him or her and kiss all over that sweet face. To tell him or her how loved he or she is and how much his/her Mama and Daddy prayed for him/her. To see Andrew hold our baby for the first time. My heart aches in the best way for those moments.

This pregnancy has been such a blessing. Throughout the pregnancy, there were days when I would forget that I was pregnant until a little kick or roll on the inside startles me and reminds me that there's a baby in there--that's how great I felt for the most part. I can't complain about a thing and thank the Lord for that every morning. These last few weeks have been filled with aches and pains and weird symptoms, but I just know that those things are my body getting ready to bring this baby into the world, and I'm thankful for those aches.

Up until the past few weeks, pregnancy has been good to me. My blood pressure has caused us a little trouble recently, so we've been sitting on go if it ever became an issue big enough to be hospitalized. Thankfully, with some rest and relaxation, we've kept it under control and kept this baby growing inside of me for 3 extra weeks. Even in those moments of uncertainty, I just prayed for the Lord's will to be done, but really, I only wanted this baby to stay inside and keep growing, to give me just a little more time to ready myself and our house before this baby came.

My Labor and Delivery mind immediately went into all the things that could go wrong when we started talking early induction for my blood pressure. I tweeted the other day that a first time soon-to-be mom has anxiety like no other, but a first time mom who is a Labor and Delivery nurse is on another level. And it's so true. I do this for a living. I watch babies be born every day and know what can happen, good or bad and everything in between. I have such an awesome insight into what to expect on delivery day but I have absolutely no control over it. It's a blessing and a curse, all rolled into one. I'm a big picture kind of girl but I'm learning how to embrace the little glimpses of the plan, too, and trust that the Lord has it all in His hands.

More than ever, I've learned to really depend on the Lord. To turn over my worries every morning and every afternoon and every evening because He and only He can sustain me and redeem me and make my fears go away. When I dwell in the things that could go wrong, all I'm doing is giving satan a stronghold into my heart. I'm keeping myself from drawing nearer to the Lord. He's been teaching me a lot about what abundant life really means and it's been a game changer. I'm carrying life within me and what a time to dwell on abundance, am I right? It's easy to let fear creep in and take over, because there is so much to be fearful of. But what joy is there in that? Why is that what we cling to first? What am I gaining from living with a spirit of timidity?

I'm not gaining a thing. I'm missing all the little things the Lord is trying to bless me with in these days before baby. The kicks, the rolls, the big belly. The bittersweet aches and pains that mean labor is getting closer. The way Andrew looks at my stomach and beams with happiness. The sweet friends checking in on me and serving me in these days before delivery. His goodness is all around me and I love that He gives me the power to choose to see that, instead of letting fear take over. It's a beautiful, beautiful thing.

My biggest prayer right now is that He be glorified with this baby's birth. I have these grand plans of how our delivery will go, but my medical mind knows that it never happens the way you plan it, so I just pray that He will be present and be at the center of that sweet moment. That my heart be prepared for what that day will hold. That my goal be a healthy baby, not a perfect delivery. It thrills my soul to know that He already has Biscuit's birth day picked out and has already laid out every moment of that day. It will be perfect and we are so ready.

There will be hard days. There will be days filled with nothing but sweetness. And there will be mundane days in the middle. I'm ready for all of the above, I think. Whenever you're ready, little one. We can't wait to meet you! Until then, we'll keep savoring these waiting days.

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