Monday, June 29, 2009

Day Care (Dad)

I have to be perfectly honest. I have no idea where the money to pay for day care will come from. We're keeping a balanced budget on a monthly basis right now with just enough left over for savings and some long-term purchases (such as furniture and auto replacement). From what I understand, day care can cost one or two thousand dollars a month! We need to come up with at least ten thousand more dollars a year just to maintain our current lifestyle. And that's just for the first kid!

I'm not going to worry about it too much, though. I guess I'm just documenting all my thoughts. Already Danielle and I have experienced quite a few times where we couldn't see the path ahead very clearly, but things have always worked out, and usually better than we ever could have expected. I guess rather than get discouraged and panic, I should be excited to see all the interesting and unexpected ways God will meet our needs. Still, I wouldn't mind finding a big gold nugget in the backyard one of these days...

15 Week Photo (Mom)

Friday, June 26, 2009

I Am Clearly Pregnant (Mom)

There is a first time for everything... today was the first time a stranger looked at me and with no conversation to verify that I might be pregnant asked me when I was due! Which means I must look obviously pregnant! I LOVE this!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Testing Part II (Dad)

There are two questions that everyone asks the moment you tell them that you're expecting:

1) Are you going to find out if it's a boy or a girl?
2) Do you have names picked out?

I'm not making fun of these questions or of anyone who has asked them, but it's kind of the old standby for when someone breaks the news that a baby's on the way. What else are you going to ask, "So, is your wife extra gassy these days?"

For the longest time, I figured I wouldn't want to know whether it was a boy or a girl. Not because of any particular reason. It just seemed like the classy, old-fashioned way to do things. But these days, with baby showers and registries and the expectations placed on the husband to completely repaint the nursery and so forth, it's very practical to find out what the baby is beforehand. Plus it cuts down some of the name stress when you can eliminate half of the roughly one zillion names in the English language. Finally, from a blogger's point of view, it gets really annoying typing his/her and he/she all the time (because I'm not about to violate the ultimate English major's taboo of using the plural possessive pronoun 'their' as a substitute for the bulkier yet grammatically correct his/her, nor am I going to refer to my impending offspring as 'it'!). I'm really craving a gender-specific pronoun about now!

So yes, we are most likely going to find out. If the baby plays along, that is, and strikes the proper pose for us during the next ultrasound. There'll be enough excitement on his/her day of birth that the added gender surprise really adds very little for the cost of waiting and having to wade through all of those additional names.

Testing, Part I (Dad)

At the appointment two days ago, the doctor seemed surprised that we were rejecting all pre-natal screening tests. You know, the ones that tell you whether the baby will have any diseases or ailments. It was a difficult decision because on the one hand, we'd love to have the all-clear and move further into this pregnancy without worries. On the other hand, what if there is a problem? Would we terminate? Of course not. So what would be gained by knowing? Well, we'd be able to prepare more for it, I suppose. But then, would it also detract from the excitement of the pregnancy? Would it add just a dose more of stress to a time that already promises to stretch our endurance and emotional fortitude?

In the end, we decided that we didn't want to know. Besides, those tests aren't completely accurate. The woman who sits next to me at work told me how she had those same tests done and was told her baby would have Down's Syndrome. Turns out, the child didn't, but you can imagine the undue stress the mother endured because of an inaccurate test.

And when it all comes down to it, Danielle and I both believe very strongly that this child is from God, defying the odds given to us by the fertility experts. And as Romans 8 says, "If God is for us, who can be against us?"

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Heartbeat (Dad)

Instead of labeling these entries with 'PB', I'm going to start using 'Dad'. Though next year will technically be my first Father's Day, I got some nice cards and well wishes this past weekend which got me to thinking that it's okay to officially refer to myself as "Dad". Anyway, this dad got to hear his child's heartbeat for the first time last night, and if things were more hypothetical up to that point, hearing the physical evidence of my child's existence certainly made it more real. At first, I thought I was hearing Danielle's heartbeat. I wanted to ask the doctor how she knew it was the baby's, but I suppose the whole microphone on the lower abdomen as opposed to the chest is a giveaway. There's definitely a heartbeat coming from Danielle's belly! I had expected it to sound somehow smaller. Weaker, I guess, though only due to the baby's size, but I was pleasantly surprised. That was one strong beat, as loud and clear as could be!

So Baby Bishop is the size of an orange this week. THAT'S the part that hasn't sunk in yet. Danielle is showing, but not enough that I can imagine an orange-sized baby inside. I can't wait for our next ultrasound. I think that'll be the moment when it really hits. Or maybe not. I don't know. We're in uncharted territory here.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

14 Weeks - 2nd Trimester (DB)

Second trimester!!! With every week that passes, we get a little more excited and a little less worried. The second trimester is a huge milestone, especially after everything that we've been through.

I am constantly alternating between feeling like this pregnancy is flying by and feeling like it's moving along so slowly. It's one of those funny things in life that seems to hit you in waves. Most of the time, if it wasn't for the baby pouch I'm sporting, it doesn't completely register with me that I am pregnant. Then I see a commercial or email with babies and all of a sudden I get this crazy rush that one of those tiny babies is growing inside of me! Wow... talk about feeling a ton of emotions all at once! I think that once I can feel the baby wiggling around in there it will start to feel real all of the time for me. From what I hear, I should start to feel those little butterfly flutters in just a few more weeks! I can't wait!

Our next doctor's appointment is on Tuesday. I'm so excited because Paul will be coming with me and he will get to hear our little one's heartbeat for the first time! And it is such a beautiful sound. It's making me cry again just to think about hearing it. We are so blessed.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

From Mustard Seed to Apple (PB)

I don't think I truly believe our baby is the size of an apple. I mean, at the last ultrasound, the baby was a few milimeters in length. But an apple? That's huge! I just can't picture it. All those fruit charts on the pregnancy sites exaggerate, right? Just to make you feel like you're making more progress. Tomorrow is 14 weeks... over a third of the way there.

Is he/she really an apple?


Monday, June 15, 2009

The Prospective Father's Views (PB)

Danielle's done a much better job keeping this blog updated than I have. Whereas the baby's actively affecting her life already(check out that pouch!), he/she's still pretty theoretical to me. But I don't want that to be mistaken for a lack of excitement. The fact is, I'm ecstatic that we're having a baby in six short months. I think it helps that we had such a difficult time. When Danielle first brought up the idea of "trying", I wasn't against it, but I wasn't all that gung ho about having kids. I've always wanted them, but I've never been in any real hurry. I think it finally struck me when I realized that by the time my kids are my age, I'll be in my 60s. I hate to think how much I'd miss of their childhood and eventual grandchildren by waiting too much longer.

Anyway, when you have to deal with infertility, and the sudden thought of NEVER having kids settles in, your entire perspective changes. I feel so fortunate just to be able to have kids, so this baby will be a welcome addition to the family.

I'm keeping this pretty tame and neutral for a first post. I'm not sure who will eventually get to read this, so I'll not delve into how this has affected relationships or discuss parenting platitudes. Let it just be said that this is one excited Daddy-to-be who can't wait to meet his little boy or girl.

Friday, June 12, 2009

12 Week Photo

Look! I already have a baby bump! :)

13 Weeks 1 Day (Dani)

We almost bought one of those pee on a stick and find out if it's a boy or a girl tests that they just came out with yesterday. But then we decided... we're only a few weeks from the ultrasound that will tell us... so we decided to hold off. I wonder if we'll make it though...

Some of the websites I've seen say that the second trimester starts at 13 weeks and some say at the end of 13 weeks... so I guess I'll wait until the end of the 13 weeks to celebrate 2nd trimester... but yay! So close!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Ode to Maternity Clothes (Dani)

Oh how much better you fit
For now I can comfortably sit
In my chair at work all day long
While I sing a favorite song.

More stylish than ever I feel
My husband cute looks does steal
So comfy and cute and affordable too
Oh what a great job these clothes do!

I must thank the family and friends
Who along did these clothes send
You all are the best
At getting me dressed
Oh how I love you all so!

12 weeks (Dani)

So our little one is the size of a lime today! All of a sudden the baby seems to be growing so fast! It's so amazing to think about.

Today we hit the 12 week mark! I think Paul and I both feel like we've hit a huge milestone and feel like we can breath a little easier. Wow... a baby! Sometimes it really hits that in 6 short months we will be coming home from the hospital with a very tiny baby that is part of both of us. I can't wait to see what this baby looks like, and what characteristics it will get from each of us, what personality traits, etc. It is just overwhelmingly exciting!