Thursday, October 29, 2009

Who Do You Love More?

I've already begun to love my baby. Especially since I can feel its movements, I've started bonding with him/her. I can hardly imagine how much more intense that will be when he/she is born. While thinking about that, I was hit hard by this idea:

I have to love Jesus more than I love my child.

It's not even born, and already I'm struggling with getting this priority straight. It's hard enough to try and love Him more than Jonathan, and now I've got this little tiny being, that already has me wrapped around its unborn fingers, that I have to give to Him as well. It's not like He doesn't deserve it, like I don't understand why I should love Him more. But my goodness, this is my own flesh and blood. How on earth will I manage to keep this needy, helpless, beautiful little creature in second place?

God not only asked Abraham to love Him more, He asked him to prove it by slaughtering his son as a sacrificial offering. Abraham loved God so much that he obeyed, to the point where he held a knife above his son's chest, and he would have plunged it in had God not intervened. His only son, whom he and his wife Sarah had waited decades for. That is the kind of love that God both requires and deserves of me. Who am I to keep it from Him?

He knows my limitations, my struggles, my shortfalls. And if I ask Him, He can teach me how to love Him more. So now I pray this difficult prayer: "God, thank You for giving me this incredible blessing to love, but help me to love You more." And I try my hardest to mean it.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Little Movement, Big Impact

18 weeks and 6 days, and still not feeling any movement. Listening to the heartbeat had become part of my nightly bedtime routine, and the reassuring 150bpm pulses let me know that the baby is healthy and thriving. Still, I wanted to feel those flutters, those little physical reminders that "I'm in here!"

19 weeks to the day, laying on my back in bed, waiting to go to sleep, hands resting on my stomach. Something rolls up against my right hand. Is that what I think it is? Could just be an air bubble... then another one. A foot, kicking out, gentle yet firm enough to push my hand up. A few moments later, and a third nudge. Then a softer one lower on my abdomen. An arm. My baby's arm, giving me a little poke.

19 weeks and 1 day. Now that I know what it feels like, I feel it all day long. A few firm kicks, and some softer nudges, all unmistakeably the baby. Distracting and tickling me during church, increasing after I've eaten, slowing down as I'm ready to sleep again.

Jonathan has been able to feel a few taps. In time it will be easier to feel them outside my stomach. For the time being, even though I love to share these things with my husband, I enjoy the private moments, just my baby and I. Even as I sit here, I feel intermittent pokes from (what I think are) the baby's arms. Arms that in 21 weeks I will hold and kiss and love more than I can imagine is possible.

In a week and a half, I'll know if those kicks and jabs are coming from my son or my daughter!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

4 Months Down

Last Saturday, the 3rd, marked the beginning of my fourth month. 16 weeks down, 24 to go. So far the second trimester hasn't been much different than the first, but once we learned the key to controlling the morning sickness, the first wasn't really that bad. We have our next monthly appointment this Thursday, and a month after that we find out what we're having. The closer it gets the more excited I am. I can't wait to start on the nursery, buy some cute outfits, pick out names, etc. I truly don't care whether it's a boy or a girl. There are so many different good things that come with each!

I've wondered when I would really start to feel like a parent; whether it would be while I'm still carrying the baby, or when it's born, or maybe a while after that. Then, a week or two ago, I had my first taste of what it feels like to be a mother. I've mentioned in a previous post the story of Audrey Caroline. (READ IT! Read it now! It's a heartbreaking story, but inspiring too.) She was the daughter of Todd and Angie Smith. Todd is one of the singers in Selah. I was up late one night reading the story again. I cried plenty the first time I read it; add the pregnancy hormones this second time, and a blubbering mess ensues. At one point I felt a staggeringly strong need to protect my own unborn child. Over and over, I prayed, "God, protect my baby. God, protect my baby." I won't fully understand what it means to be a mother until this little one comes into the world, but for the time being, I think I have an idea.