Baby Blueberry – 26 Weeks

How far along? 26 weeks. BB is approximately the size of a head of lettuce, about 13.6-14.8 in. and 1.5 to 2.5 lbs. BB’s eyes are forming the he will open them soon. His immune system is ready for life outside the womb now and he is soaking up my antibodies.

Total weight gain? 23 pounds

Maternity clothes? Dresses are the most comfortable. Some of my size small maternity pants don’t fit well anymore.

Movement? All the time!!! It is so reassuring to feel him wiggling around in there.

Miss anything? lunch meat, white rice, feeling relaxed (having a hard time doing that with so much going on)

Food cravings? bacon, egg, and cheese biscuits, burgers, sweet tea

Have you started to show? Yes, and my bump seems to be all baby. You can’t tell from behind yet.

Sleep? Sleep has been good, but we’ve been getting a bit less of it because we have some homework we do in the mornings now from my childbirth class, Hypnobabies.

Looking forward to? All of our favorite shows will premiere in the next two weeks, so I’m excited about those coming back on. Big Bang Theory on Monday, Sept. 22, NCIS on Tuesday, Sept. 23, and Castle on Monday, Sept. 29.

Symptoms: Fatigue, extra mucus and flem, moodiness (I was emotional before pregnancy, so this isn’t helping), back pain, hungry more often, itchy skin, discomfort where my upper abdominal muscles are stretching out, color changes on my stomach, leg cramps, some tooth/joint pain

Belly Button in or out? It moves between in and out depending on what time of day it is and how much food I’ve eaten.

Gender? We’re having a boy!

Best moment this week? I have had a really hard time seeing good moments this week. Many situations have arisen this week that we didn’t foresee occurring and that we didn’t financially plan for. But even in those moments, I know that God is still for me and that His ways are higher than mine. All that said, I guess my best moment of the week was being a part of replacing a roof on a friend’s house today. While I couldn’t help much, I got to enjoy seeing many men pouring out their energy and sweat to bless this lady with a leak-proof roof!

What do I know? I know that I hate feeling busy and rushed. I don’t like it when I get to the end of the day and haven’t had a moment to catch up with my husband or to breath in a breathe of relaxation. My Hypnobabies scripts have helped create that space, but because it’s homework, it still feels like one more thing on my list that has to be checked off before the day is done. I don’t like living like that. I enjoy checklists as a tool, but I don’t like it when I need to plan my life around them to meet my schedule. Hopefully, after my childbirth class ends (I’m glad I chose to do it, it is just 3 more hours a week I have committed to be somewhere), I will get to breathing easier.

Note to the Blueberry: Dear Blueberry, I promise to live in the moment with you…no matter what other people say or what the current American culture encourages. No matter what might need to be done, spending time with you and loving on you are more important. I promise to play in muddy puddles with you. I promise to look at insects and trees and animals with you. I promise to have water fights and sword fights with you. Sometimes work will have to get done, but I pray that the Lord will teach me how to spend time with you, even when I am doing those things. I don’t want my existence to be my to-do list. Give me grace, because I won’t get it right all the time. But know that in my heart, my deep desire is to live richly in every moment with you and your dad. Love, Mommy

all there

Blind Steps of Faith

I struggle with wanting to know the will of God and the purpose driving the storms, struggles, and trials we go through. I have had great teaching regarding these issues, but sometimes my heart still doesn’t get it. The deep desires that reside there don’t understand why they aren’t being met, why they have been ignored, pushed aside. They feel abandoned, left to die a painful death. However, this is not true.

My desires are seen by a loving, faithful, ever-present God and Savior. I never have to fear that my God-given desires (i.e. to be in community with others, to be a mother, to have a happy, healthy marriage) are being ignored or pushed aside. God cares deeply, and I need to allow my heart to rest in that.

Now, this truth doesn’t answer all the questions I have in the middle of a storm. It’s difficult to go through hurt and pain, hurricanes of suffering and seemingly never-ending waits without answers or some small understanding of what is being accomplished. It is natural to look up to heaven and wonder, ask, plead for answers, but we can’t demand them. We were never promised answers. In fact, there are painful experiences and tumultuous storms for which the reasons will never be clear this side of heaven. We act as though we deserve an answer. WE deserve to know what God is up to, why He is putting us through this. But we can’t demand that kind of explanation from such a Huge, Other, Big, Powerful God. However, we are promised presence. And God’s presence always exudes love, grace, and truth.

My pastor at Community Bible Church is incredible. God has truly gifted him with a passion and ability to speak and teach. A month ago, he preached a sermon called ‘Love in the Storm.’ I encourage you to listen to it. It was from Mark 4:35-41.

35 That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” 36 Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat.(Z) There were also other boats with him. 37 A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. 38 Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”

39 He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.

40 He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”(AA)

41 They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”

As I have been listening to this message again today, I ran into a quote that I know I need to keep hearing.

“Look, you got a choice. You’re going to go through the storm. Yes? You’ve got a choice. You can row and fight and bail and scream and yell and holler and accuse, often to no avail. Or you can just say, ‘You know what, this isn’t about the storm, it’s about Jesus.’ It’s about crawling up next to Him and saying, ‘I trust You.’ “

Storms are that simple. They are about you and Jesus. Will we trust Him? Even when it hurts? When it doesn’t make sense? When it is scary?

I want to…so badly. He is trust-worthy!

So as I walk through these months and continue to try to get pregnant, I will trust Jesus. Do I understand? No. But I do trust Him.

 

God didn't bring you...

Hold tight to the truth that God cares deeply about you, even in the midst of a storm!

Love,

Elise

 

Groans of the Heart

Today is one of those days when there are no words.
No words I want to speak to others, no words to cry out to God, no words to put to my feelings.

Thankfully, there are truths I can believe about God, even when I don’t know what He’s doing in my life, and I don’t know what will come out of my trials and waiting.

Today, I am trying my best to meditate on things that are worthy of praise, one of the good things to think about from Philippians 4:8. God never changes, so no matter how I feel or my circumstances, He is worthy of praise.

So here is a list of things that are worthy of praise which I have compiled today:

1) Nothing can separate me from God! (Rom. 8:39)
2) My life is not pointless, it has purpose and direction, even if I can’t see it yet.
3) One day, all these struggles and frustrations will pass away and God’s glory will be ever before me in heaven.
4) My life is being worked out and planned specifically for me, my heart, and my passion.
5) I have been perfected through Christ so my sin and failures are no longer seen to condemn me.
6) That I don’t walk this path alone, I have a BIG God, an amazing husband, a supportive family, and a loving Community Group who will walk through the storms right by my side.
7) If God has provided for the birds of the air and the wildflowers in the fields, how much more will He provide for me, His Beloved.
8) That God is ‘other’ and beyond my comprehension. If He were comprehensible I would not be saved from my sin, that small of a god couldn’t save an entire race.
9) That I am welcomed into God’s court, not as a servant, but as a Daughter and Princess.
10) That our emotions are not overlooked, they are known to a Mighty and Feeling God. He feels our hurts and pains!

God deserves all the glory and praise, no matter what is going on in my life!
There is a beautiful song by Mandisa called ‘Broken Hallelujah’ and it fits how I feel right now. I hope it speaks to you as well.

(This is a post written on Monday reflecting on my continued period of waiting to get pregnant.)

Through a Child’s Eyes

On Wednesday, I took on the third word in Philippians 4:8 that Paul encourages us to think about, just.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

I decided to think about how all people are created in God’s likeness and how no one I come into contact with on a regular basis is ‘out to get me.’ I struggle with feeling things a bit too much and tend to take statements and complaints personally, so I decided that I would reverse my thinking for a day (to hopefully begin a full reverse to my usual line of thinking).

Today, it is time to mediate on something pure. The first thing I thought about regarding this word was the innocence you see in children. For the most part, the way they view the world is pure, unjaded, and uninfluenced. That’s why they say the craziest things, sometimes embarrass their parents because they blurt out who knows what, and why Jesus encourages us to have a faith like that.

I remember my days as a child playing outside for long hours, imagining hidden worlds and alter egos. I remember the pure joy of riding a bike with no hands, dancing with abandon, and giggling with friends.  As I’ve grown up, I’ve lost a little bit of that, but I don’t want to.

15 Now they were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them. And when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them. 16 But Jesus called them to him, saying, “Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. 17 Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it. (Luke 18:15-17)

So, today I will be thinking about the pure joy of baby laughter, little girl twirling, and the excitement of seeing things for the first time.

picture found at sherrisreadingjubilee.blogspot.com

 sherrisreadingjubilee.blogspot.com

Much Love,

Elise