Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Part 4: Preparing for Lisbon

One day sometime after the ultrasound, I had a horrible thought. I had absolutely no preparations in place for a baby. We’d given everything babywise away long ago. Where we now stood, my little girl would be coming home from the hospital completely nude! Provided they let me leave with her since I didn’t have a car seat.

I rested up for days and finally dragged myself and my seventeen-year-old daughter to the store to pick out a few sleepers. I only had to sit on the floor once or twice to make it through the shopping experience, but I came home with three sleep and play outfits, a dress, socks, a receiving blanket, and a baby blanket. Later my husband grabbed some newborn diapers from Macy’s when he went to buy food. I still need to pick up some white tights, and a long sleeved white shirt for under the dress, but come what may, our daughter will leave the hospital clothed! I should also order a car seat online, but we need a swing, a stroller, and a high chair as well so I want to do it all at once. It’s a little overwhelming.

May and June brought relief from the nausea, and I cracked down, finally able to finish my novel. I was still spending most of the day working from my bed on my laptop. If I did get up, I had to wear support nylons for the varicose and other vein problems in my legs. Exhaustion was a constant battle, and sometimes I'd fall asleep in the middle of a paragraph. But I eventually finished writing Final Call, the third novel third in the Autumn Rain series. First book I ever wrote completely from my bed. Age really does make a huge difference, even for a normally healthy, active person like me.

The end of June finally brought warm weather—a mixed blessing. The heat made my legs swell even more, and I began retaining water as though storing a year supply. I couldn't wear rings, my face was bloated, and I couldn’t be on my feet for more than ten minutes without serious discomfort. Only a big nightgown was comfortable to wear. At the same time, my pool was ready for swimming and in it I found absolute relief! There is nothing for sore legs like floating in water. No pain, and I can barely feel the extra forty pounds. And with all the extra fat and water, I don't have to do anything to stay afloat. I just have to make sure I don't fall asleep while floating. :-)

Now it’s July and more of the same. Except now we’re on a serious countdown for Lisbon to make her appearance, and WE CAN’T WAIT! My eight-year-old kisses my stomach so many times a day, it makes me laugh. The lovely Braxton Hicks contractions have kicked in big time, so my body is also getting ready for Lisbon's debut.

I’m doing okay. Really. You can find me either in bed or on the couch writing or sleeping, making food for my children (I'm so grateful for my microwave!), or floating in the pool. If I get desperate, and no one else can go, I may hobble to the store for milk and something to throw into the oven. More likely I’ll send my husband or daughter. For now, everything else is on hold. And that's okay with me.

Part 1: The Secret is Out
Part 2: The Decision
Part 3: A Troubling Diagnosis
Part 4: Preparing for Lisbon

More related posts:
Update on Baby Lisbon
Update #2 on Baby Lisbon

10 comments:

  1. I am so happy for you Rachel. I'm glad you are feeling better and that Lisbon will be making her appearance very soon. Thanks for sharing your story.

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  2. Wow, Rachel - what a giant step. I have 7 children, but I had twins first and the rest all before 8 years. I'm not sure if it's better to have them close together or farther apart, but when we had our 6th, we were done. We never did anything to make it that way though - and surprise, found out we were pregnant with #7. I was only 35, so I didn't have the age issue you've been having, but it was still a blood pressure issue. Fortunately everything went well with the delivery, fastest one I ever had, and didn't have time for drugs. I'm impressed you have a midwife, I always wanted drugs!! lol
    Anyway - I am SO very thankful for my youngest. He isn't perfect, but I love him and would have missed having him. I know he was a gift. Even though I wanted another little girl... I'm a little jealous of that with you. But I'm so excited for you. You are such an inspiration. Thank you for sharing this experience with us. ;)

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  3. I am seeing the midwives, but they are the nurse midwives so I'll be delievering in the hospital with an epidural. I had my first four naturally but I'm just too old for that now!

    Thank you for the much-needed encouragement, ladies!

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  4. Congratulations and best wishes! I hope that all goes well for you and Lisbon (I love that name!) So often people take pregnancy for granted, though it truly is a blessing. When a baby is hard to come by, the blessing part becomes increasingly obvious. Your cherished daughter will soon be in your arms!

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  5. Congratulations, Rachel! We also had an amazing, unexpected bonus added to our family last August. We thought we were done and were happy with the four children we had been blessed with, ages 16, 14, 12, & 10. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father had other plans for us. I was nervous going through a pregnancy at an age when I didn't think I would have to endure all the aches and pains associated with bringing a new life into the world. But, after a LOOOONG hot summer our little Joshy joined our family. His older brothers and sisters think he is the most amazing baby in the world and he has brought so much love and joy into our home. We adore him and can't imagine life without him. Good luck to you on your new adventure!! :)

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  6. Congrats on the little blessing due to come into your life. I've wondered many times what was going on with you because I didn't see you at other events. So glad it was because of such wonderful news.

    Take care, dear friend. :)

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  7. Thanks for the stories and encouragement! It really helps!

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  8. Congratulations! I'm so very happy for you and jealous! We are the same age, but I don't have your incredible faith and had a hysterectomy two years ago. I have regretted the decision ever since. I just really believe I was supposed to have one more baby. Anyway, don't say you are "older" because you aren't! Pregnancies are definitely more of a challenge as we age, but you are still young!!!
    Thank you so much for your wonderful books! I own them all!
    Best of luck to you in the next couple of months!

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  9. I have 5 children and a foster daughter. Two of my children were surprises, but I'm so glad to have them. We had 4 children, the youngest 6 when I discovered I was pregnant with #5. What a blessing they all are.

    My youngest daughter who is 45 now, has an extra rib. She was in her 30s before she discovered that was why her back hurt so much, but as long as she exercises regularly, she has no problems.

    God bless you and your little one. Babies are always a blessing. We just had our 9th great grandson, another will be born tomorrow C-section, and another dues in January. Bring them all on!!!!

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  10. Thanks Lynette! I am still young, I am still young! I'll keep telling myself that. I appreciate the encouragement!

    And to "Annoymous," you reposted on my part 3 and said your daughter has an extra vertebrae, not a rib. That is so interesting. I read about several people online who share Lisbon's condition, but I've never "met" anyone who actually lived through it and has had a regular life. Thanks for sharing!

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