Saturday, January 30, 2010

20 weeks down...

... 20 more to go.

Baby girl to-be-named and I have officially hit the halfway mark today. Here's a little visual of what 20 weeks looks like:

I am: 20 weeks
I feel: exhausted from walking across the room.
I can: only fit into 4 of my shirts.

Baby girl is: the size of a banana.
Baby girl feels: quite comfortable in her current home (which is growing tighter everyday).
Baby girl can: almost bring me to tears with a kick in the right place.

Dr. H is: scratching his head to figure out where I'm going to put the 7.5 lbs Baby girl is estimated to be at term.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Baby Girl Brown!

Jim and I had our 19-week ultrasound yesterday and are happy to report that a) our baby is developing perfectly and b) our baby is a girl!

Here's a sampling of the nine fabulous ultrasound pictures Dr. H was able to capture for us. I have chosen to *not* post the picture verifying she is a girl (for the sake of her modesty), but we can assure you she is most definitely a girl.

What have we learned about our daughter from these pictures? 1) she is very flexible, 2) she is perfect from her head down to her toes, and 3) she did not particularly enjoy having her picture taken (as evidenced by the fourth picture down where she hides her face in protest). Enjoy!

Friday, January 22, 2010

18 weeks... blah.

Here's a summary of the last four weeks:

Week 15 - I get the flu and vomit.
Week 16 - I get over the flu, start working nights, and vomit.
Week 17 - I vomit, start cramping, start medication, and vomit some more.
Week 18 - The baby kicks me in the gut and I vomit even more.

I've been getting a lot of questions about how second trimester has been going, and so far, it's not been super. I no longer have the overwhelming feeling of impending doom that I felt the entire first trimester, and I've had a lot more energy, but every time something changes in my life (i.e. going from working days to nights and back, getting the flu, getting a bladder infection, starting antibiotics, etc.) I'm thrown back into a few days of first-trimester-like activity. Which means being confined to the bed and the toilet. Yuck.

I'm now feeling the baby move all the time. It has also developed a very strong kick, which it likes to do at the worst possible times, like kicking me in the stomach when I'm queasy or in the bladder when I need to pee. And yes, I am certain it is a kick because you can watch my stomach move when it happens! Jim can put his hand on my stomach and feel the baby move when it really gets going, but he has yet to feel it kicking.

Speaking of my husband, he has been the one continual blessing through this whole experience. For the past four months I have given up on cleaning, cooking, buying groceries, and doing laundry, and he never complains about not having any food to eat or clean clothes to wear. He is always looking for ways to make my life a little easier, like holding my hair and rubbing my back while I vomit or dropping his very busy schedule to bring me food when I need it. I am very thankful for God's provision to me through Jim.

The next time I post will be to update everyone on the results of our ultrasound next week. I'm very anxious to find out if this baby is developing appropriately or not. The past two weeks I've taken care of patients with serious complications who are roughly as pregnant as I am. That, the cramping I experienced last week, and the two nightmares I've had about this pregnancy (both in which I died and the only dreams about this baby I've had to date) have reminded me how very fragile my condition is.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

News from Haiti

News from Haiti:

I'm posting news from an American family in Haiti close to my heart. Shelley and Byron Tlucek are missionaries to Haiti with their seven children. Shelley and Byron were in the US during the earthquake, but their five youngest children were in Haiti. Praise God their family, the other missionary families they work with, and the Haitian women and orphans they care for have survived. God continues to provide for their needs with food and shelter (Shelley reports their pantry and freezer were full before the earthquake hit, and 40+ people have been able to be sustained the past few days from those provisions).

Four of their five children in Haiti are currently at the US embassy awaiting evacuation, if possible. Their youngest daughter, Isabelle, age 3, is staying with close friend in Haiti. They do not yet have a passport for her to be able to leave Haiti. Shelley and Byron are in Florida trying to get a flight back to Haiti.


Byron believes that our children need to be evacuated, if at all possible. I confess to being resistant to this. Bodies are literally lining the streets, covered in sheets, many of them identified - but not all of them. As you know it is very warm in Haiti. This is a very bad combination, which will be made much worse if it begins to rain. The potential for spreading disease increases exponentially at this point. So, against my strongest desire, I am asking that you pray the embassy permits my children to be evacuated with Kelly Tobin.

FURTHER......please pray they issue an emergency visa so that Belle can fly with them. We do not have her passport as it was just turned into the Ministry of Immigration for the receipt of her new passport with our name. We have nothing. We are trying to work with the embassy - and have not been able to speak with a "real person" as of this moment.

JUST LEARNED that our tickets have been cancelled again. We do not know what to do.Isabelle is the biggest, BIGGEST piece of this very difficult puzzle. We cannot leave her. Oh, dear God, please do not make us leave her by herself.

At present we have run out of options - ONLY GOD CAN PROVIDE ANSWERS, DIRECTION, A CLEAR PATH.

We really need a clear path.

News on the home front:

While there was great seismic activity in Haiti, there was some smaller activity going on in my body.

I spent Monday horribly sick and returned to work my first night of three in a row cramping, of all things. I assumed it was dehydration, but after the cramping continued and worsened over three nights, I had some tests ran. It's looking like I have a small bladder infection causing all these problems, and a good course of antibiotics should return everything to normal.

The peanut is angry about all the seismic activity going on at home, but fine. In fact, when I tried to monitor the heartbeat for a minute at work, the peanut kicked the monitor violently. Twice. This child is going to give us a run for our money.

And yes, we have still not closed on our house. The underwriters are responsible for the continued hold-ups. We have no idea when we'll be able to get into our new home, but the good news is our loan officer is so frustrated by the underwriters that she lowered our interest rate again. We've decided that maybe all this waiting isn't such a bad thing.

In all these things, I continue to be grateful that God is in perfect control.