Monday, December 19, 2011

I realized on my way home from work this week that I am going to have to learn what to do with free time for the next 3.5 weeks or so. Since I finished classes yesterday, I feel like I have all the time in the world to get things done. This is probably good considering I have time to get my house more in order for the upcoming arrival of Baby Girl. But if I'm being honest, I got home at about 6:50 tonight and feel like bedtime will never come. Don't get me wrong, I love bedtime, but seriously, I feel like I have so much more time on my hands. Anyway, I digress.

Before I move on to my parenting advice from clients today, I feel like I have yet to mention how much I love watching baby girl kick. Yes, it's great to feel her, but seeing my stomach move when she kicks me makes me laugh every time. I'm sure when she kicks me in my ribs in the future I won't be laughing, but for now, I will continue enjoying it.

Ok, parenting advice from the day:

1. Watch your cat or it could suffocate your baby by laying on its face because it wants to lick the milk off your baby's lips.
2. Give your child two pieces of food, one for each hand or else they will throw a fit.

Now, the reality of it is, this parenting advice, obviously, isn't the worst I have been given, but seriously, sometimes I wonder whether or not my clients realize that I work with parents and children for a LIVING. Yes, that is correct, I get paid to attempt to teach clients parenting skills. For one, I am not going to let my cat (if we end up keeping her) to jump on my baby's face. I don't let my cat jump on my face, let alone my baby's face. Actually, Dan and I lock her up at night, so I think I'm good to go on that. I will also be sure to wipe off my baby's mouth after feeding her, because apparently clients do not feel as though cleaning their children is of the utmost importance. Two, I'm not sure that giving my child a piece of food for each hand is going to stop all fits, but maybe I should suggest that the next time my client's child is throwing a fit. "Give them a piece of food for each hand and they will stop rolling around on the floor like a fish out of water and act like their age."

3. Do not leave your child unattended when they are at the crawling age on your bed or they might crawl off and land on their face if you turn your back for a minute.

Ok, so my client didn't really give me this advice, but I took their story from the weekend and made it into a piece of advice because I felt as though it was necessary. (Don't worry, baby is ok!)

The disclaimer I put on this parenting advice is that I am well aware I do not have everything figured out when it comes to parenting and I don't want to come across like I do; because, let's be honest, even though I have spent lots of time with kids, it's always different when you have your own. So while I have a lot to learn, it's still funny to me that my clients (key word; clients [remember i am teaching them parenting skills] ) are so apt to give me advice. And, I have to find joy in the little things within my job, and this just so happens to be one of the areas.

Feel free to blame my sense of humor on my father.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

This has been a whirlwind of a weekend. Homework, rehearsal dinner, homework, homework, gift wrapping, wedding, homework, church, friends, laundry, and more homework. Add in some sleep in there and that pretty much sums up the weekend. But it is over, and I am sure this week is bound to go quickly as it is the week before Christmas. (Fingers crossed...)

The downfall of Christmas this year is that due to wanting to have a paid maternity leave I only have one vacation day to take...I am clinging to the fact that because Christmas and New Years are on Sundays that I get two three day weekends in a row regardless of my vacation day. Throw in MLK day, and that makes three three day weekends out of four. Not too shabby, I suppose. And let's face it, three months off work after the arrival of Baby Girl will be WELL worth going to work when I have despite saying nearly every Sunday, "I reallllllly don't want to go to work tomorrow". (It has only been said one time today; however, I have thought it several times.)

Moving on, this weekend as I was doing my homework the TV Radio was on, and I heard a song by Sixpence None the Richer entitled "The Last Christmas Without You". I have heard it several times, but I guess I didn't really ever listen to the lyrics too closely. It basically talks about the last Christmas a family has before the birth of their child; how fitting for the stage of life Dan and I are in right now. Here are the lyrics:

I feel your heart beating
Inside my own skin
And I think of Mary
In Bethlehem

That night in a stable
Our saviour was born
Yes, we have so much
To be thankful for

On the last Christmas
The last Christmas
The last Christmas
Without you

They're choosing the colours
Preparing your room
For one day; Midsummer
The advent of you

Together we wait for
A heavenly gift
Is winter a wonder?
Enchanted that this is

The last Christmas
The last Christmas
The last Christmas
Without you

See the stars shining for above
Hear the singing
Praise to the Giver of Life and Love
Maker of Beautiful things..

I feel you heart beating
Inside my own skin
And I think of Mary
In Bethlehem

When darkness was shattered
The dawn of God's grace
And the journey'd begun
To the first Easter day

On the this Christmas
The last Christmas
The last Christmas
The very last Christmas
The last Christmas (x 3)
Without you

Wow...Wow...Wow. Not only am I wow'ing because I can hardly believe my dream of becoming a mom is coming true, but I am also wow'ing because this is truly mine and Dan's last Christmas. Not only am I wow'ing because I can feel my little miracle kicking inside of me, but I am also wow'ing that God has entrusted me to carry her. But ultimately I am wow'ing because I truly am reminded of Mary and the humbleness that she portrayed as she gave birth to the Savior of the WORLD. As a young teenager she felt the same kicks that I am feeling, and for all I know she could have had morning sickness as well. But to know that my Lord and my God started out just like my baby girl is starting out is simply amazing to me. Really, it leaves me speechless.

I have so much to learn, and I have so many areas to grow in as I journey into motherhood, but I can already tell you that as difficult it may be at times, I know God has chosen me for this. And because I can say that with confidence, I can also say with confidence that He will give me the strength I need to become the mom he is calling me to become. Just like He gave Mary the strength to be the mother that He called her to become. And for that, I say, alleluia.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Not going to lie, I've been writing part of this post in my head for about 10 days now. However, it's my last week of classes this week which has pretty much meant non-stop homework for quite some time now. Only 3 more days to go! There's a lot of work to be done, but I will make it. And then I will thoroughly enjoy my almost month break from classes; perhaps I will even be able to remind myself in that time that I enjoy reading for pleasure since I have had no time for that lately.

Also, remember when I asked a few posts ago for any of you who would to be praying for a situation that I knew God was big enough to move in? Well, He completely answered that prayer unexpectedly. He is SO good. Now I am just praying for the next step with this opportunity. And because I know He is big enough to continue answering prayers, I would ask that you would lift up the orphanage in India that is so near and dear to my heart.

Baby Girl is continuing to grow! On a positive note, she is not making me as sick anymore. And soon after Christmas I think I will be able to announce her name. She kicks a lot, and it's neat that I am starting to learn her patterns of when she is awake during the day so far. You can even see my stomach move when she moves now too!

As promised, though, I have a couple more client stories regarding parenthood/pregnancy.

1. This week I had a client ask if I was wearing maternity clothes yet. Not that it is any of her business, but I told her that I was not. She then replied, "Well, you might as well enjoy wearing your regular clothes now because you are never going to fit in them again." I didn't have the guts to tell her that I might actually be active after having my baby because I haven't smoked cigarettes for the past 10 years so I am pretty capable of still exercising considering I can still breathe.
2. Last week another one of my clients was complaining about how horrible the Department of Child Services is and how they have no business getting involved in anyone's life. As I let her continue venting, because there was no point in trying to say anything, she then proceeded to say to me, "You know, I actually had a doctor tell me I did my daughter a favor when I smoked marijuana while I was pregnant with her because it helped develop her brain!" I probably had a really confused look on my face, but I still didn't say anything. Honestly, I just thought to myself that all the marijuana she has smoked over her lifetime killed too many of her brain cells to even realize what she was saying. Once again, though, I decided to not take her advice.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

It's a GIRL!!

Yes, that is right; a dream come true. We are due to have our little girl around April 23rd, and I am halfway through my pregnancy. Not too much has changed, though, yet. I'm just now starting to show and am not yet into maternity clothes, which I am not complaining about at all. I'm beyond excited to meet her, and once we have told all family what name we have picked out, I will post it.

I will say, she is quite the active little thing as her favorite pastime seems to be kicking mommy. Dan felt it for the first time before Thanksgiving and his response was, "That's weird; that is so weird. There is a BABY in there." I actually felt her move for the first time on November 16th at one of my client's houses. Three swift kicks right to the bladder; apparently she didn't like how I was sitting. (My bad, baby!) But regardless, it has to be one of the coolest feelings ever, and it such a privilege to know there is a little miracle living and growing inside of me.

The day of the ultrasound was quite possibly one of the longest days of my l.i.f.e. I had to work all day because the ultrasound was not until 4:45, and it just happened to be on the day of the first snowstorm Indiana saw this winter. The technician was running late and so was my mom, both just by a few minutes, so the lady did all sorts of measurements before she actually told us what we were having. I thought my heart was going to beat out of my chest while I was waiting; I also was convinced I was going to pee my pants because my bladder was so full. But once she finally told us, I was able to enjoy the rest of the ultrasound. Dan and I truly did not have a preference either way, but we both had a feeling all along that this one was going to be a girl.

Anyway, while I am sure there are many more updates that I have to share, I've been sticking to a pretty strict schedule as far as sleeping goes for me. So I need to head that way, but something that I decided would be fun to do throughout my pregnancy is to keep track of all the fabulous parenting advice I get from my clients; most of whom I am teaching parenting skills. Ironic? Perhaps, but funny none the less. I should preface this by saying only two of my 12 clients know that I am pregnant currently, so I am sure, in the months to come, I will have plenty to add.

1. One client says to me, "Whatever you do, DO NOT get an epidural." When I asked her why she thought that, her response was, "People who get epidurals have CRAZY kids, there is just something wrong with them. I didn't have epidurals for any of my kids." I didn't bother to tell her that my mom had an epidural with me, nor did I reminder her that her daughter was my client.
2. The same client said to me before I went to find out what I was having, "Well you know, all babies start out as females and then some turn into males." I thought about explaining to her that a baby's sex is actually determined at fertilization, but that you just cannot tell what you are having until the baby is farther along in development; however, I didn't want to get in an argument so I just dropped it.

Gotta find joy in the little things in my job...until next time!