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We found out on my 26th birthday that we were expecting our fourth baby! What a gift! My heart was filled with even more giddiness as two pink lines appeared, than when I had taken any pregnancy test before. This is what our baby looked like at 7 weeks, around April 9th.

This is what our baby looks like at eight weeks old, around April 16th.

For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be.
Psalm 139:13-16

May 7, 2000 - Right now I'm about 11 weeks along. This pregnancy has brought first trimester fatigue, like the previous three. Somehow, though, I always forget how wiped out I feel those early months!
But in spite of that, it has been a relatively easy pregnancy. My appetite is up (only occasional I-can't-eat-anything moments) and I've making sure I've had adequate protein, along with plenty of water and my prenatals. I'm still nursing Reagan (almost 15 months old now!), but we are gradually weaning. I can tell my milk supply has diminished, and I've been feeling a little "touched out" the past few weeks.
I am amazed at how excited Johnny and Tennyson are already about their new baby. We told them right away--the have sharp ears and WE wanted to be the ones who told them about their new baby brother or sister. We didn't want them to just hear others talking about it. Tennyson especially seems to be aware of his new position as a big brother--not just to Reagan, but to the new baby.
I think I felt the baby moving last night! But I'm not sure. I felt Tennyson this early, but I didn't feel Reagan moving until about 17 weeks. I guess I'll find out if it was really the baby or just my imagination in the next few days. I can also feel how high my uterus is now. John says he thinks I'm getting a little bit of a baby belly already! *grin*

August 3, 2000 - I had my first midwife appointment at about 17 weeks in June with Alisa in San Antonio. My uterus was just right for my dates, and we got to hear the baby's heartbeat! *grin* That is one of the most exciting things about pregnancy--the first time you hear that little swish-a-swish-a-swish.
I'm now about 23 weeks along. This little one is kicking and squirming all the time. I enjoy pregnancy so much, and the movement inside of me gives me a maternal thrill. I rejoice that God has given us this little one. From the beginning my heart has been almost giddy about this baby.
We are visiting my parents right now, and the other evening I came across some baby pictures of my sister Bahne and an article my Mom wrote about her birth. My Mom wrote the story "Born in Faith" about her homebirth while they were spiritually seeking, before walking in the Christian faith. And in it I can so clearly see how faithful God was to them, and what a miracle of His that my sister was born. Even more than that was the special bond of maternal experience I felt reading the birth story and reflecting upon this time in my life, my mother's life and my sister's life.

August 27, 2000 - I'm now at 27 weeks, and definitely look pregnant. Now when I'm in public people openly ask when the baby is coming rather than hedgingly inquire if I'm pregnant. Thanks to several friends, my sister-in-law Amanda Marie, and a great sale at a Motherhood Outlet, this is my best-dressed pregnancy! *grin*
We arrived in South Carolina this week. Although I had the names of several midwives in the area, so far I haven't been able to contact and set up prenatal care with any of them. We would like to have a homebirth again, but I've heard the CNMs at the local hospital are excellent also.
Since this is the fourth pregnancy in five years, I'm trying to be extra-aware of my health and nutrition. And, praise God, I've felt great and things are progressing fine. One of my favorite prenatal health resources is Dr. Tom Brewer and his Brewer Pregnancy Diet. I'm so thankful that I enjoy being pregnant!

October 22, 2000 - I have a wonderful midwife now who is known as the "granny midwife" of this area because so many of the other midwives apprenticed with her. Everything seems to be going smoothly--praise God!
I wonder if this baby really IS a girl. The pregnancy hasn't been all THAT different, but the differences I've noticed all seem hormonally caused. Maybe. . . I've felt since the beginning of this pregnancy that another boy would be wonderful. We're in the boy mode, doing boy things, and John is a WONDERFUL trainer of little growing men.
But when we were at SPLICE cross-cultural training this summer, we spent a lot of time with some friend who have two little girls. (Peter and Gretchen Beck and their daughters Kendi and Kaylee.) After that, the idea of a little girl was SO appealing. John wants to find out the gender of this baby, and I don't. So far, though, I haven't had an ultrasound and so it doesn't seem likely that we'll know before s/he is born. Out of habit, though, I still mostly refer to this little one as "he."

The boys are SO excited about this baby. Yesterday Johnny very affectionately was rubbing my belly. Reagan loves the "blow on Mommy's big ol' baby belly" game. Lately it seems like he is a bit more aware that we'll be having a baby--and he acts like he is a "big boy" like his older brothers. This pregnancy has had a lot of happy anticipation!

November 6, 2000 - Today I am officially 37 weeks, and so it is "safe" for the baby to come at any time! The other day I felt like if I could go to the ER and demand a C-section, I would. I wasn't feeling too awkward or uncomfortable--just ready. However, I don't think this baby will be coming anytime soon. Originally, I had hoped that this little one would stay put as long as possible so that I could complete as much or Russian language school as possible. I'm due just two weeks before finals. My parents and sister (who is due in March 2001! *grin*) will be coming the week of Thanksgiving. That sounds like a wonderful time to have this baby.

This past Saturday, I went baby/birth shopping. Reagan, my 20 month old, and I went out alone. It was refreshing to be out and about, and have some fun time with him. We picked up odds and ends for the home birth--a flashlight, duct tape, extension cord, lysol. . . *giggle* I told John the list and he asked, "And what does the midwife need with THESE!?" I also bought a little baby sleeper gown and some recieving blankets. Since this is our fourth child in five years, you would think I have everything, right? I -thought- I did. But we are in a temporary living situation, and the box marked "Baby Things" that I grabbed had crib sheets, a sling, and such--not a stitch of newborn clothing! Perhaps this is a girl, anyway, and the little boy things I thought I had packed away just wouldn't be appropriate.

John has been SO affectionate with my "big ol' baby belly" this time around. He's always been a wonderfully supportive husband and father. But this time there has been an extra tenderness. And that makes me love him all the more.

November 17, 2000 - Earlier this week I had my home visit with the midwife and her assistant. That went really well, but the baby is back to a breech position. The midwife says she has seen babies respond VERY favorably to prayer and a certain series of things done by a chiropractor. (Hmmm. . . Known as Wilsons or something?) The chiropractor that was recommended is excellent, and I'm feeling great! *grin*

All day today I've had some pretty businesslike Braxton Hicks contractions. It's reassuring to know my body is gearing up for labor. I usually carry late, so I haven't been expecting to go into labor for several more weeks. But I hope the baby comes when my folks are here for Thanksgiving!

I encourage you to check out these Birth Comfort Ideas and encouraging Bible verses.

A friend shared the following poem she wrote last year when overdue with her baby. For me, it sums up a lot of my emotions and joys of pregnancy. And it makes me reflect on this gift. . . Oh thank you, God! A baby!

by Jenny Silliman

Morning sickness, night time too.
Sleepy and tired the whole day through.
Oh thank You God!
A baby!

Money's tight and clothes don't fit,
More to sew and mend and knit .
Oh thank You God!
A baby!

Baby stuff everywhere,
And I just sit here in my chair.
Oh thank You God!
A baby!

Daddy declares "We're going out to eat!"
Then ties my shoes. I can't reach my feet.
Oh thank You God!
A baby!

Waiting and waiting, pains at last,
Only false labor and due date past,
Oh thank You God!
A baby!

Out in public, huge and humble,
"Is this your first?"
"My seventh," I mumble.
Oh thank You God!
A baby!

Strangers' advice, looks and sneers,
Taking comments, jokes and jeers,
Oh thank You God!
A baby!

Six kids in tow, one on the way,
Out shopping my nerves begin to fray,
Oh thank You God!
A baby!

Aches and pains and heavy with child,
Can't wait to put Baby down awhile.
Oh thank You God!
A baby!

The pains begin. . .. . .
Oh thank You God!
A baby!

The babe is born, our sweet reward
What a blessed gift from the Lord.
Oh thank You God!
A Baby!

In His love, Jenny

Jenny Silliman
Wife of Cliff
Mother to 7 blessings, ages 18 to 8 months
Jenny's Journal Cliff and Jenny publish
Family Beacon Quarterly
POB 3872
Sequim, WA 98382
subscription $8

Your Pregnancy, Week by Week
For more about babies, click on my life site.

Last Updated May 3, 2003

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