One of my most favorite moments of these pregnant days is the evenings right before we go to sleep. Often, we are reading one of the many books that we have on birth and newborns or on our iPhones communicating with the outside world or on the iPad researching baby related topics. When the moment comes, all distractions get put away and a baby bubble is created. Or as our hypnobirthing instructor would say, we get in our tent. Brandon will talk to the baby through my belly and kiss baby and be present with baby. We’ll often touch my belly together and follow our baby from one end of the womb the the other. It gets quite confusing at times and we’ll become determined to figure out the anatomy of our child, “Is that a foot?” “Head or butt?”. One particular evening baby was very active, creating waves in my belly. We almost felt like we could make out a foot. Soon our anatomy guesses were getting challenging. “If that’s a foot, and that’s a butt.. then what the heck is this over here!? Another foot?” Brandon exclaimed, “We’re having an octopus! That’s too many limbs!”
Another evening, as I was reading, Brandon rested his hand on my belly. As he was feeling the squirms and jolts of baby I noticed his hand became very still and heavy and it was very quiet in the air. I looked down and there he was, hand still in place, dead asleep. He had fallen asleep while feeling baby. My heart melted. I had to document this magical moment. I ever so slowly reached for my phone on the nightstand and snapped this photo. I’m so thankful I have such a strong happy memory to hold onto for the rest of my life.
This week I’ve noticeably gotten much larger. The realtor, who has been showing our unit to prospective buyers, commented on my size. She hadn’t seen me in about 2 weeks and just couldn’t believe how much baby had grown. It was endearing listening to her as she moved her hands in front of her own belly from one size to another. She also made a strong prediction that baby is a boy. Her theory was that I am carrying all in the front and not so much on the sides. She said it’s a well know theory used in China. We also heard this same theory the day before at Target, while we were checking out. Another customer was so adamant about her prediction. I’ve mentally taken note of people’s guesses. I’m curious how it will all play out. Needless to say, Brandon and I stepped up to the plate narrowing down boy names since we really only had a few solid girl names up till this point. We shall see!
This week, after months of talking about it, we finally secured a storage unit and started clearing out the office closet and other corners of our house. One precious item moved was a 100 year old bed frame that I have slept in since middle school up till just last year. I hope to pass on this turn of the century relic to our child once they’re big enough to claim it as their own. The frame barely fit into the small storage unit, but I’m glad it did and I’m glad it’s safe. I also discovered several keepsakes that I can’t wait to share with our child. A box full of stuffed animals, a sweater my dad wore with he was 5 years old, Star Wars apparel, those dinosaur sheets everyone had in the 80s, among other random items that may or may not become apart of baby’s life.
Aside from the obvious physical space needed to make way for baby, I’m learning there’s also bodily, mental, and metaphysical space that takes place in preparation for baby. Not just between me and baby, but also between Brandon and I and baby. Making space to grow our family in our hearts and in our own universe. Some of this will come naturally and with ease, while others will take practice.
One exercise I enjoy doing often is visualizing making space in my belly for baby. I’ll take deep breaths in and on the exhale imagine my uterine wall relaxing and becoming soft around baby. I imagine our baby comfortable yet supportive in the womb, with no hard muscles or stresses pulling on him/her. Not only is this a great exercise to prepare me for baby’s arrival but its also a great exercise in welcoming baby. It’s as if I’m saying, “I welcome you baby, I’m making space for you, there is plenty room for you here with us”.
Priorities are changing fast in our lives. Motivation that once stemmed from ourselves or each other has been expanding around baby. It could be as obvious as what I eat and put into my body to what Brandon does to help us out. We’re learning its no longer about us, it’s about our family. The motivation in which we are growing our family is another way which we are making space for baby.
We are also energetically clearing the house from any negativity. We aim to welcome our baby in a place of peace, free from chaos and the troubles of the world. I see this space as pure and holy, much like a sanctuary of love and acceptance. Visualizing our home as such and spreading this positive energy to every nook and cranny in our house and in our hearts is a way we hope will impact and prepare us for parenthood.
Any negative comments I receive from friends/family I turn into a positive, either in my mind or externally, if appropriate. There are a lot of negative stories and personal experiences people like to tell me about, if only they would tell me the positive ones. The best thing you can do for a new mother/family is to share the positives that have come from your journey. Leave the negatives as your learning vices and only share the good. In doing so, you help build a new mother’s confidence as well as shine a strong light on what could easily be a dark world.
These are the ways we’re making space for baby. There is plenty of room, it’s just a matter of rearranging whether it be financially, energetically or physically. The space is here and we welcome baby into our growing space.
One of my favorite things about being pregnant, so far, is the openness that surrounds me. There’s many different kinds of openness that occurs but the one I’m talking about now is the openness towards strangers and other people. I’ve gotten a colorful mix of comments from the most random of people.
When I was 26 1/2 weeks I was stepping onto a bus. The bus driver (female) turned into an adult baby, spouting off all kinds of baby talk directed toward my belly. “Look, it’s a wittle baby! A wittle baby is in there…cute itty bitty baby!” etc. It was awkward for a second, but as I made my way to a seat I couldn’t help but smile. This lady connected instantly to my baby just by seeing my belly, it was really fascinating to me.
Today, at 30 weeks, I was walking through the park with a very yummy organic soft serve ice cream cone. The sun was bright and warm and there was a light breeze in the air. Perfect walking weather. I’m sure I had a goofy smile on my face as I was in pure delight walking with the sun beaming down on me, snacking away at this ice cream and just being in the moment. A man was taking a photo of the De Young, so I stopped to avoid being in his photo. He noticed me and ran up to me, “How many more days?” “Days?” I asked with a chuckle as I started to walk off. “I have two more months”. He laughed in excitement and let me go on my way. I briefly thought to myself, how pregnant do I look? But soon forgave his words and let the moment wash over me. The innocent comments from strangers are the best. It makes me wonder how I acted towards expecting mother’s in the past. I hope I was respectful, there’s lots of room for interpretation and lost translations.
As I crossed the street, a road worker was conducting traffic since the light signals were down. “You’re cute and preggo” she said to me. Ha. That comment made me laugh. It always reminds me of pasta sauce.
I’ve also taken note that random people will usually ask, “Is it a boy?” “A little boy” “boy?” “are you having a son?” Only a few times have I gotten the classic, “boy or girl?”. But never just “girl?”. That’s interesting to me. It makes me think that our society still values men over woman on such a subconscious level. Either that or people are getting some mad testosterone vibes from my belly as we don’t know what we’re expecting. Oh the wonder and frustration it causes people.
No strangers have touched my belly yet. I’ve had a friend and a family member place their hands on my belly without asking first, which was awkward at first to me. But then I thought, this baby will know these people and have them in their lives. Getting to know their touch and energy before officially meeting them is not so bad after all. I hope it will become a familiar feeling for my baby. I’m not sure what I would do if a stranger touched me though. I’d like to think I’d wack them away, but in reality I can be overly polite. Needless to say, I’m not looking forward to that moment. Who knows, it may never come. I try to avoid eye contact with strangers for this reason alone.
Being pregnant has brought lots of positive well wishes and good lucks towards me from strangers. It brings out the kindness in people. They don’t pass me by unnoticed. I get much more smiles and nods and hi’s then before. It makes me wonder why we don’t normally show our gratitude towards each other more often on this shared earth. It makes me feel extremely special.
Here I am, 30 weeks today. Approximately 10 more weeks until my guess date. I’m getting more and more excited to meet this new life.