Expecting while expecting…

I feel like Baby B #2 (along with my blog…and my pets…) is already getting a serious shaft in attention. It is no longer a surprise to me that I have a completed baby book as a keepsake, while my middle sister’s is about half done. And the baby sister? Well it has her name and some birth day stats in it…Poor girl…

As I presently near the end of my second trimester, I found myself realizing how well I documented my pregnancy with Charlie and how poorly I have documented this one! So many reasons and excuses could be made. Time, energy, distractions of a toddler…all pretty legit. Truth be told, the entire pregnancy has been very different. I was not by any means expecting them to be the same, after all no two children are the same. Heck I am not even the same person I was a few years ago, life is just entirely different! Change is the only constant, after all.

I make it a point in my life to always be learning. To always be growing. To never settle or remain stagnant. I always have some area of my life that I am working on. Be it relationships, soul searching, faith…you name it, there is always room for growth and development.

My focus and life lesson during my first pregnancy was learning to let go of control, to trust and let God run the show. It was funny how the pregnancy paralleled what I was already working on. But the lesson didn’t stop there, it just evolved right on into one of my present self-development mantras;

Letting go of expectations to free myself to accept things as they are.

The trend of the pregnancy parallel has continued as well…

While this was a planned pregnancy, it just happened SO FAST. I am very blessed in this regard! Once past the initial excitement, my first thoughts honestly drifted to the many women I know who are struggling to conceive. It almost felt unfair. I offered up a lot of prayers for these women, for all women struggling, in the early days.

Then I remember thinking what an amazing big sister Charlie will be. I am pretty sure this progressed to a lovely rose-colored image of 2 children playing joyfully together and leaving me alone in peace for more than 10 consecutive minutes. Rose-colored indeed. Deep down, I know better…

If I have had an ongoing lesson as a mom and wife, it is as mentioned above. EXPECT NOTHING. Expectations really do set the stage for disappointments. I will say this again:

Releasing expectations leaves you free to simply ACCEPT things as they are and deal with things as they come. (Easier said than done, but the intent is there.)

I had several internal struggles for probably the first 16-18 weeks of this pregnancy. I thought my belly grew too fast. (I know my butt grew to fast…) I had such bad nausea and food aversions that all the healthy things I really wanted to eat made me want to vomit. I still can hardly eat eggs. Out of desperation and hunger, I ate an embarrassing amount of rice. (Which is out of character for me and does at least explain the butt growth.) But most of all I struggled with how I thought I should be connecting with my baby. It just came so easily with Charlie, my first baby. I felt her kicks so early and so much of my heart and my mind were always with her. I am not sure I will be able to give the proper words to these feelings, past and present…

I was eager to do so many things that I found helpful the first time. I meditate pretty much every day, I regularly jot down quotes and scripture to potentially help me through labor and delivery, I sing to my belly…yet I would find myself almost straining to feel kicks. And then questioning the ones I thought I felt. I would have these little moments of panic because the baby wasn’t moving as often or as much as I had hoped…all these expectations I was ultimately putting upon my baby, myself and my pregnancy.

Then one day something beautiful happened. And it happened when I wasn’t even trying. I was driving in rare silence and the words of John Lennons song, Beautiful Boy, suddenly popped into my head. At almost the exact same time, I felt a huge whoosh of movement in my hips from my little one.

“Before you go to sleep. Say a little prayer. Every day and every way, it’s getting better and better. Beautiful beautiful beautiful beautiful boy.”

Now I don’t know if baby is actually a boy, so I have since replaced “boy” with “baby” just in case. (But it sure does match my mommy feelings, so we shall see!) But in that moment, I felt like I KNEW my baby. It was just really really powerful and wonderful. All of the nausea, food aversions, restlessness, ligament pains…all of it was suddenly worth it. I am finally feeling freedom from my expectations and am looking forward to what my final trimester will bring.

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