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Pregnancy 9 months of {over the moon} anticipation Wednesday, May 29 – Test Day 4:52 pm I had an extra pregnancy test under my sink. Even though I was six days away from starting my period, something made me want to take a test. Maybe it was the fact that I had felt nauseous twice that day. I was at home by myself but I wanted to set my mind at ease knowing whether or not -- at that point -- if I was pregnant.

5:01 pm Those two minutes felt like a lifetime. I watched patiently as a second faint line started to appear on the screen. Here I was again. This was the second time I had seen the {positive} pregnancy test results in the past two months --- but something inside told me that this time everything was going to be ok. The longer I thought about it -- the more I giggled. I laughed and giggled and cried for about 10 minutes before I ran out to my car to head to CVS to buy more pregnancy tests! I wanted to get a couple of different brands to be sure my off-brand test wasn’t faulty. After announcing my news to Ranger on my way out the door, I got into my car and heard the chorus of a song playing “...these are the times that make us feel like we have it all...Life is Beautiful.” I immediately pulled over and cried - then pulled up iTunes so that I could purchase the song!

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Test Day, Continued ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

CVS Trip I was happily welcomed into CVS by a friendly employee who asked if I needed any help finding anything. I giggled and told him I thought I could handle it. I stood in the aisle looking at tests {as if getting a specific brand would better prove whether or not I was REALLY pregnant} I proudly walked away with two more sets of tests and explored the rest of the store to find a way to break the news to Phil. I found a card that said {welcome baby} on the front and decided to head home. I was a mess at the checkout counter. I told the worker that I was pregnant and received a happy congratulations. I quickly came home and took the other two tests which confirmed what I had found out just an hour earlier.

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Telling My Husband

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I spoke with Phil a couple of times after taking the test saying things like - “I really am so thankful for all the hard work that you do. There really should be an ‘appreciation’ day for husbands. I wonder how or what I could do to show you how truly thankful I am for you.” After Phil got home a little after midnight, I handed him a card that said on the front, “To my hard working husband”. He opened it to find the baby card. I caught a few curious glances as he read my personal message to our baby on the inside of the card. After he finished reading it he said, “so -- are you pregnant or what?” I think I just smiled back. I took him to the computer so that he could watch the video of my reaction earlier that afternoon. Since telling Phil, our hugs have been tighter, and we hold on to each other a little longer. I can tell already how much of a great dad he is going to be because he is so sweet and caring to me -- even more now that I’m pregnant!

Thursday, May 30 – Spreading the News Hair appointment and Telling Chaley I had a hair appointment today and felt like I was going to burst at the seams! Erica {the tanning lady} and Laura {my hairdresser} were both talking about how I wanted a baby and how I have no filter --- and here I was having to keep our secret a SECRET. I giggled and cried a little bit in the chair... but by some miracle, I was able to keep my pregnancy to myself. Thankfully, I was going to have an outlet after my hair appointment. I was headed to Chaley’s house and I COULDN’T WAIT to share my excitement with her! I pretended to show her an app, but sent her a picture of my pregnancy test instead. I filmed as she screamed, hugged me, and jumped up and down with excitement! It was such a fun and surreal moment!

Saturday, June 1st – Week 4, day 2 Spreading the News Today I second shot with Amanda Sumner in Tifton, GA. I felt a sense of freedom being an hour and a half south of WR and told most of the bridal party that I was pregnant! This seriously is a hard secret to keep to myself. I. am. just. so. happy. !

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Tuesday, June 4 - Spreading the News Telling Leigh Leigh came down today to spend just under 48 hours with me working on our website launch. Soon after she arrived, I brought her to the living room to show her our new Apple TV. I told her about one of the awesome features -- the ability to flip through your camera photos on the TV. And yes, the second photo was a positive pregnancy test. Leigh FLIPPED OUT, and a tackle-hug, scream-fest ensued. WOW is it awesome to be able to BE PREGNANT and to share that happiness with my 7 month pregnant friend!!! She was able to take my week 4 pregnancy photo {Friday, May 31st} and it sent me over-themoon emotionally. This week, our baby is the size of a poppy seed.

Wednesday, June 5th Today I went shopping and found the perfect onesie to surprise mom within a week and a half. Phil and I plan to take Dad and Mom out to eat on Father’s day. Because Mom’s birthday is the next day, I want to give her a gift with the onesie inside. It says “My Grandma Loves Me”. Tonight the choir had to sing during the Wednesday night service. We all lined up as usual, but right before the countdown ended, a Tiffany Baker from the praise team came up to me and said, “I just had a strong feeling this past Sunday that you are {with child}. I just wanted to let you know that I don’t think it will be long from now...” I giggled and cried through the entire worship set.

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After we left the choir, I told her that her suspicions were right on. “SHUT - UP!!!!!!!”, she said before I grabbed her and went to hide downstairs near the Coke machine for a big secret hug and some happy tears before heading home. 3


Friday, June 7th - Week 5 Week 5 Today we hit week FIVE!!!! Our baby is the size of a sesame seed and looks more like a tiny tadpole than a human. I am still more in love with the idea of being pregnant at the moment than loving an actual baby. I am curious to know when that transition will happen --- and I am excited to fall head over heels in love!

Saturday, June 8th Baby Room This morning Phil and I went to Home Depot to finalize our carpet order for the baby room. He witnessed first hand how I giggle and sigh and sing randomly -- then try to excuse my behavior in front of strangers by hinting at my pregnancy. He is trying so desperately hard to get me to keep my mouth shut... but this happiness is just WAY TOO BIG to keep hidden inside me. I am still going crazy because I haven’t told my mom yet! Just one more week until the secret is out! 9:22pm I took a 1.4 mile walk with Ranger tonight. I am excited about exercise and eating healthy for what seems like the first time in my life! I always thought I would be the pregnant girl who binged on junk food, but I seem to be binging on avocados and kale chips! Pregnancy Dream Dr. Hall (my Dentist) had to deliver my baby at 20 weeks to do a checkup... then put it back in. He used what looked like the claw in those toy grabbing games and pulled out a beautiful 8+lb little girl. I held her and she smiled. I asked if I could keep her with me because she looked like a normal baby and I thought it would be a lot more diďŹƒcult to get her out if she was put back in and grew for another 20 weeks. But he put her back in anyways and I spent the rest of the day daydreaming about her! !

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Wednesday, June 12th – Kim’s in town 1:00pm I went grocery shopping with Bethany and Mom yesterday... I found a little old lady and said... "Can I tell you a secret??? I'm pregnant. And I'm here with my mom and sister and they don't know. And if I didn't tell someone, I was afraid it would come out in front of them!" She giggled and said that she was glad I picked her to tell :)

Telling Kim and Bethany We sneaked away to the Florida room so that Kim could wrap mom and dad’s presents for Father’s day and mom’s birthday. After a few minutes of chitchat, I told them I was pregnant!!! I got big smiles, congratulations, and hugs from both of my sisters! It was really cool for me to be able to tell both of them in person. I only regretted it for a moment, when, the rest of the afternoon -- little comments slipped that made me want to kill both of them!!! If they let out my secret before I told mom and dad, they’d never hear the end of it. Kim wanted to know how far along I was and Bethany just smiled REALLY big from across the room.

Friday, June 14th – Week 6 Morning Sickness | 11:00am Ok... ok... So today proved that this pregnancy isn’t in my head. Well hello there, Morning Sickenss! You are no fun at all. It feels like I am three minutes from running to throw up -- but it never comes. I just constantly felt like I was this morning. Although I had gone to Publix yesterday to stock up for foods to help with MS, Phillip had to make his first ever pregnancy shopping trip to get me new things to try. Nothing I bought the day before seemed appetizing. Only TWO DAYS until we tell Mom and Dad!!!

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Sunday, June 16th – Father’s Day 1:30pm Phil, Dad, Mom and I left our house to head to Outback Steakhouse for a Father’s day lunch. When we were directed to our booth, I made the boys sit on the inside. “Girls ALWAYS sit on the inside. And we’re the ones who usually need the potty breaks!” After ordering our food, I told them I had gifts to share while we waited. I gave my dad some pecans and then I gave my mom a card followed by her gift. Nothing but tears flowed from both of us once she saw the word “Grandma”! We hugged {another reason I wanted to sit on the outside” and spent the next half hour catching up on the last three weeks! Oh, and she couldn’t believe that I actually surprised her :)

Phil Tells Mark Mark said, “happy ‘slip one past the goalie’ day”

Baby Development This week our baby is the size of a lentil and is about 1/4 inch long! The nose, mouth, and ears that we’ll spend so much time kissing in eight months are beginning to take shape!

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Friday, June 21st – Week 7 1:48pm Today marks week seven and my first pregnancy puke. Phillip was really sweet and rubbed my back. He kept telling me I was ok, and that everything was going to be all right. Baby Development Our baby has doubled in size since last week and is now about 1/2 inch long!! Hands and feet are emerging from developing arms and legs — although they look more like paddles at this point than the tiny, pudgy extremities I’m daydreaming about holding and tickling.

Tuesday, June 25th Things are getting exciting!!! Today I set up our first ultrasound with Carlene Allen for one week from today!!! I also bought our baby’s Jenny Lind crib and will be painting it grey to match the design on the walls! I am SO excited!!!!

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Friday, June 28th – Week 8 Nausea, nausea, nausea. The only thing I seem to be experiencing more than nausea is sleep. Holy cow -- I thought I slept a lot before pregnancy, but now I’m getting naps galore. Oh --- and despite all the “remedies” for morning sickness, nothing has helped me feel at my {normal} yet. But it is a wonderful reminder of the precious gift inside of me!!! Choir Party Tonight I told Tina Nico in the bathroom that I was pregnant... The excitement also overflowed to a few people after the party in the parking lot following a conversation about me {trying to conceive}

Sunday, June 29th Southside Church So, this morning I seriously felt like I was destined to puke at some point. I still went to sing in the choir. After the first song, I was debating on which set of stairs I would use to leave the choir loft... The next song was “through You, I can do anything”, so I said -- “well, God, I guess we’re sticking this out together!” After joining my husband at our pew, I felt a strong need to eat something and get some air. I went downstairs and found myself down there eating a donut and talking with a woman from choir the ENTIRE service! I am definitely pregnant.

Tuesday, July 2nd - Ultrasound Day!!! WROBGYN - 1:10pm We arrived 20 minutes early. We had to wait in the car with my mom who came along with us to video our reactions... I called Tim while we waited to let him know that he was going to be an uncle again. He was the last person in my family that I had to tell! Once we were inside, I had to fill out {paperwork} on an iPad kinda thing. Before I had even finished filling it out, the ultrasound tech called me out of the waiting room back to where we would see our BABY for the first time. I immediately started crying upon entering the room.... Oh man --- I can’t wait for the next page!!!! !

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Seeing our Baby for the 1st Time 1:41PM Because I was so early, I had to do a transvaginal ultrasound. I went to the restroom to wrap myself in a purple cloth and came back into the room and hopped up on the table. Yes. I was was still crying. I noticed Phillip come close and grab my hand while he caressed it with his other hand. What an amazing and sensitive husband I have!!! For comic relief, I wanted to make a joke when the tech said... “the penetration is the worst part”, but the screen immediately lit up with the most beautiful thing I had ever seen -- OUR BABY. I kept having to tell myself in my head to keep my eyes open so I wouldn’t miss a thing, but my hands remained fastened to my face as I watched our little peanut get measured. It wasn’t long before our tech old me I had to stop crying so that she could find a heartbeat. I concentrated on breathing while we heard our little bean’s heart beating at 174 bpm. She asked if I had any dreams of what the sex of our baby would be -- and I have had two that we had a little girl. Not sure what it all means just yet, but my hopes for a little girl are alive and well!!!! I was handed our four first pictures of our baby and protected them like crazy on our way to Chik-fil-ae for a celebratory snack. When I stood to order, I looked at the menu, then back at the server and immediately started crying explaining that we had just seen our little baby for the first time. Wow. What an overwhelming feeling of love and gratitude.

Phillip’s Reaction

On my way back home -- I told my mom that I wasn’t sure how I would have enough emotions to get through this entire pregnancy. She responded, “Rebecca, if you were going to run out of emotions, it would have happened by now...haha”

As soon as I saw those first images on the screen I thought, “Wow. That’s my child!” The reality of it all smacked me in the face. It was a good/scary thing.

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Saturday, July 6th - The Secret is Out Finally, no more secrets! Today I put together a video of all of the reactions of friends and family along with video from our first ultrasound. I used the song “Life is Beautiful” by the Afters as the background music. Chris Wolfe mentioned that the video was borderline crazy because there is crying from beginning to end :) The video has been played 1000+ times, and at least 25 or so of those views have been mine!

Wednesday, July 10th – Week 9, day 5 11:00am Today we drove out to Gray, GA to meet with Carlene for the first time. After a 40 minute drive, I was thankful to finally be there so I could sit somewhere without motion. {Car rides are definitely a nausea trigger} This was our first meeting so we talked about the basic stuff and recorded family history. I also had to take a urine test and get blood drawn. The best part was the minute or so that we got to hear our little baby’s heart beat through the fetal doppler. It beat stronger and louder than when we heard it for the first time at the obgyn. Today it was 160 bpm. {Still thinking you are going to be a little girl!!!!}

This week, our baby is the size of a grape!

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Week 10 We reached DOUBLE DIGITS!!!! Monday, July 15 – Week 10, Day 3 7:03pm Today, I am almost halfway to week 11!!! Holy moly. Even though I told Phil right before he went to work, “I wish the baby would just be born tomorrow so we can go ahead and be a family” -- I still am shocked by what I just wrote at the start of this paragraph. I am still dealing with morning sickness, and a love/hate relationship with food. If I eat a pb sandwich before getting out of bed, I seem to have an ok day. The struggle is choosing between the laying in bed and eating or quickly taking potty break! I have been overwhelmed in the last week with a combination of information overload and free-flowing emotions. But, I am thankful for Kim, who seems to easily put my fears to rest.

Tuesday, July 30th – Week 12, Day 4 Grocery Store Surprises The fruit and veggie section of the grocery store is so exciting for me right now!!! This week our baby is the size of a lime, so I just stood and held a lime and smiled for a minute. Then --- a worker stocking bell peppers asked if I needed help after staring his direction for way too long. I laughed and told him that I am pregnant and have been reading ahead -- That in a few weeks, our baby would be the size of a bell pepper, and I didn't realize how big they were!!! !

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From a lime to a bell pepper in a month?!?!? No wonder I'm so hungry!


Friday, August 2nd – Week 13 Furlough Days I think today is our 4th Friday together since the furlough on base started. Phil has been cleaning. Like SERIOUSLY cleaning. There was so much cleaner smell coming from our bathroom into the bedroom, that I had to leave the room after dry heaving a couple of times. Aside from random moments of nausea -- I think this morning sickness is slowly fading away!!! I am SO EXCITED about that. What I wish would happen though, is I wish my baby would start showing! I know she’s only the size of a pea pod... but I REALLY want to have a bump! I wear maternity shirts and poke my belly out in reflective windows when we are out running errands so I can feel more pregnant :)

Thursday, August 8th – Week 13, Day 6 6:18am Oh my gosh --- I JUST felt my baby move!!! 4x!!!!!! I woke up to go potty then couldn’t go back to sleep because I was starving. I ate a PB sandwich then laid down with my hand on my belly. I felt something --- about four times in the space of five minutes that just felt like a gentle finger tap on the inside of my tummy!!! I’m imagining a little tumbling and kicking baby inside of me for the first time tonight!!!! Giggle :) 5:48pm AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! Carlene just left my house after we heard our little baby’s heart beat of 160BPM!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am so excited I could scream!!!!!!!! Little Layla --- I just KNOW THAT YOU’RE IN THERE!!!!!!! I am SO SO SO SO SO SO excited!!!!!!

Sunday, August 18th – Week 15, Day 2 Latest Developments Wow -- the past couple of weeks so much has happened! The best part is that I have started to feel GREAT as the nausea has ended and energy has started to come back into my daily routines! This last week I started to plan our gender reveal ultrasound appointment. I started to get worried when I realized that Leigh’s due date was one day after I hit 19 weeks... which is about the time I was planning to schedule our appointment. After multiple phone calls and a little bit of planning, we have decided to have a gender reveal appointment in Macon TOMORROW!!!!!! I am so excited -- but let me tell you -- It has really started to set in that there is a 50/50 chance that my little one could be a boy. My heart has grown this past week in preparation for a little boy, but it has ached with desire for a little girl. I just got back from Leigh’s baby girl shower and started to cry when I hugged a little pink plush toy that was passed around the room. !

Oh how I want you to be my Layla.

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Monday, August 19th – Week 15, Day 3 Gender Reveal Day Nervous doesn’t even begin to describe how I felt this morning! Nervous, excited, anxious, worried, hyper, fidgety -- All could describe me. On the way to Macon, we stopped at a gas station and I heard the lyric to “Your Grace Finds Me” by Matt Redman, “It’s there in a newborns’ cry... Your great grace.” I cried and knew that Jesus was with me. 10:45pm After some tear and laughter filled chatting with some ladies in the waiting room, we headed back to meet Judy and our little baby. I laid down on the chair and was quickly calmed by a beautiful photo taped to the ceiling. After a minute or so, the ultrasound was hooked up and we saw our little one! Judy showed us a little foot and toes... then pulled out to a full length shot of our baby. I saw something between the legs and immediately looked up and exclaimed over and over again that it was a boy. Judy calmly and quietly said, “I don’t think so”. After a few more minutes of checking and double checking, It finally hit me that we were having A LITTLE GIRL!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was so blessed to have Leigh there with me to photograph those moments as well as have video recording our reactions. Little Layla! You are OURS and we couldn’t be MORE THRILLED!!!

Monday, August 26th - Week 16 day 3 ! ! ! ! !

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Shopping for Mama Today I went to VS for some pretty panties. Yep - I am determined to find comfy underwear that don’t have the adjective {granny} attached onto them. Something about new PINK panties just made me excited -- ESPECIALLY because you are a GIRL!!! 13


Wednesday, August 28th – Week 16, Day 5 It’s my 26th Birthday! Today I received over a hundred “happy birthdays” on my facebook, but my favorites were the ones that included “little mama” :) I got a book from Kim about raising your children with grace. I am excited about reading it and raising you with God’s love and grace! I also got handmade cards from Kami & Chloe -- Pink, of course :) Phil bought me lots of chocolate and sent me to get my hair done! He also came home a couple hours early to take me on a date. While sitting in the Sonic drive-in, I had a spontaneous craving for a Texas Cheesesteak melt, so we pulled away and went to Waffle House instead! Afterwards, we took Ranger on a walk near the lake with all of the ducks! It was a perfect day. Thursday Today I did a bridal shoot at Tryphenas. All I keep wanting is for someone to tighten up my hips! LOL. I feel like there is a screw loose! I guess my body is prepping for stretching!

Thursday, September 5th – Week 17 Day 6 Pregnancy Symptoms Tonight I went to CR and sat behind a grandma holding her precious little girl. My chest just ached as I gazed at her little toes and imagined kissing yours!!! On my way home tonight, I passed El Cotija only to instantly think, “chicken with rice and CHEESE”. I immediately turned around in the AmStar parking lot and ordered us dinner to go! It was SO YUMMY and I know you liked it because I am feeling you kick me pretty good right now! Seriously, your consistent little kicks since I hit 16 weeks are what I look forward to most about going to bed and waking up to in the morning :)

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Friday, September 13th – Week 19 4:50 a.m. Today was a special day. Today I photographed the birth of Leigh’s baby, Chloe Blake. I have photographed births before -- but there was something SO EXCITING about photographing this one while thinking of my up and coming future! I did a little wiggle after Chloe was born and thought, “All right, Layla -- I want to meet you too! Come out NOW!!!” Of course I want her to grow to her fullest potential, but seeing Leigh and Chloe together makes me ache for my little Layla. SLEEPY TIME Unlike Leigh, I was able to sleep the days away after staying up all night shooting a delivery. It is a little scary to have a “play-by-play” from my best friend about the realities of no sleep and the responsibilities that accompany being a new mommy, but I know that we will make it. My biggest fear is that I will sleep every time you sleep and miss seeing so many moments of your beautiful little newborn self...

Tuesday, September 17th – Week 19, Day 4 2:15 Today daddy and I got to see you again!!! We learned that you are healthy as can be and your heart rate was 146bpm. One of the most incredible moments was seeing the four chambers of your heart! Oh, and I won’t say I wasn’t a little relieved to hear that you are still a GIRL

Your little kicks in my belly have transitioned to RUMBLES and TUMBLES and I LOVE IT!!! !

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Sunday, September 22nd – Week 20, Day 2 So yesterday I shot a wedding in McDonough, GA. I have a feeling that it affected the way my body felt today -- at least the sore feet anyways. The main thing I notice right now as far as my body changing are the inner bones of my hips. It’s like, I think about them every time I take a step or have to adjust my position. I hear that this is temporary and will most likely fade away as I get further along in my pregnancy and that makes me happy! But seriously -- if someone told me today that I would have to trade hip pain for being 20 weeks pregnant with a little girl, I would do it in a heart beat!!! I am in love with you, little girl, and can’t wait to hug you, and kiss you, and squeeze you ‘till my arms fall off!!!

Wednesday, September 25th – Week 20, Day 5 Little Layla -- you just keep kicking me and I LOVE IT! I just read through my entire pregnancy journal and LOVE how many times I thought/wished/hoped/believed that you were a little girl!!!! You should see all of the pink that has come into our house since we found out about you 5 weeks ago! I made some pink ruffle curtains for you and your grandma has bought LOTS of adorable clothes for you already! You are so loved by so many already and it makes me very very happy! CRAVINGS : So, while I haven’t thought I had any specific cravings... I have to admit that cookie dough ice cream has to be at the top of the list. I can’t seem to make it through a grocery trip without buying more. Today I bought a bag of chocolate chips to add to the ice cream....

Sunday, September 29th – Week 21, Day 2 Southside This morning I got the most ADORABLE gifts for M you, little Layla, from Stephanie and Kristi! These girls from the choir went over-the-top when they went shopping for you! Little girl clothes and shoes are SO hard to resist!

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You are getting quite the collection of clothes in your closet and I haven’t 16even had a shower yet! You are definitely going to be wearing some cute stuff because of so many sweet people loving on you already!


Week 22 Loving life with you. Thursday, October 3rd – Week 21, Day 6 Baby Room Your room is finally starting to look like a nursery! Your grandma came by today and helped me finish your pink ruffle curtains! I am kind of a girly-girl myself, and hope that you will be too! If you are, there are many dress-up dates and nail polish parties ahead of us! I can’t wait to play with you!

Friday, October 4th – Week 22, Day 1 10:34am This is definitely the week of visible movement from the outside of my tummy! I am SO happy to see that you are growing and having such a good time in my belly! I hum to you “Baby Mine” and you usually respond with a kick! I love how active and healthy you are!

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Baby Development At close to 11 inches and almost 1 pound, you are starting to look like a miniature newborn. Your lips, eyelids, and eyebrows are becoming more distinct, and you’re even developing tiny tooth buds beneath your gums. Your eyes have formed, and you are growing the fine hair (lanugo) that covers your body. The deep wrinkles on your skin will stick around until

Thursday, October 10th – Week 22, Day 6 12:15pm Today is the first day that my right boob started involuntary leaking!!! I am SO PREGNANT!!! Reading + Research Maybe it was the leaky boobs that prompted it, but I started reading a book Bethany gave me about breastfeeding. I am hopeful that we will have a smooth transition as we try this new thing for the first time together. All I know is that I can’t wait for your precious little face and body to be against my skin. I want to give you the best because I think you are worth it. There seems to be as many negatives as there are positives {at least what you hear from a lot of mom’s these days}, but I want to do this for us. Seriously - every time I think about you in my arms makes every decision seem so “little” compared to how BIG my heart will feel when I see you. I just want you to know that I love you already and that your kicks send me into emotional overload. iTunes I am listening to my labor and delivery playlist that I worked on today. Beautiful songs of hope, grace, and love will help me as I focus on relaxing and bringing you peacefully into our arms.

Sunday, October 13th – Week 23, Day 2 Savannah Day with Phil My boob leaked at the Blue Moon today and I had to put a napkin in my shirt! Hahaha.

Tuesday, October 15th – Week 23, Day 4 Pre-natal Appointment Layla’s heart beat today was 144 beats per minute. Today we talked about the sugar test for the next visit -- which I get to do with Welch’s grape juice :) Pregnancy Symptoms Layla is still moving quite a bit and sometimes feels like popcorn popping down low... Pretty sure she stepped on my bladder this week and I had to quickly waddle to the potty. !

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Monday, October 21st – Week 24, Day 3 Pregnancy Symptoms After a day and a half with Leigh and her baby, Chloe, my boobs were on fire. I hand expressed about a teaspoon of colostrum and gave it to Ranger. The relief was nice, but I researched and decided not to mess with them anymore until I am full term. Apparently, there’s a chance of that causing preterm labor.

Tuesday, October 22nd – Week 24, Day 4 New developments! Today I felt Layla’s hiccups for the first time :)

Sunday, October 27th – Week 25, Day 2 I can feel Layla hiccuping right now as I’m laying down for an afternoon nap! Oh, and Phil called me a milf today.

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Friday, November 8th – Week 27 Officially in my 3rd Trimester My thighs are touching. Actually, might as well say they are colliding with each other!!! Of the 16 pounds I’ve gained, at least 10 of them have got to be on my thighs. Yuck. Baby Development Layla is still pretty active! I am peeing more often and starting to feel her more distinctly!

Saturday, November 9th - Week 27, Day 1 Getting Bigger I’m so excited that my belly is turning into a shelf! Makes eating on the couch that much more convenient!

Thursday, November 14th - Week 27, Day 6 Pregnancy Symptoms The dreaded itch has officially begun. I’ll check with my midwife tomorrow to be sure it’s not a rash, but for now, I’m trying not to scratch my tummy to bits. This is not easy. The good news is that tomorrow marks a new week -- 28 WEEKS!!! Ahhhhhh!!! I can’t wait to hear her heartbeat again! I will also be taking my sugar test. Oh - and tonight, I wore maternity jeans, a t-shirt, my tennis shoes, and Phil’s hoodie. And I was comfy :)

Monday, November 18th - Week 28, Day 3 Mommy Date I’m at Veronica’s house holding baby Joshua and talking about preggo symptoms. I recalled the alarming middle of the night calf cramps. I am SO GLAD I haven’t felt those lately... Knock on wood. !

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Thursday, December 5th – Week 30, Day 6 A day in the life... Layla’s movements have been off the chain!!!! Big kicks, big movements, big rolls! I am seeing expiration dates on coupons that are past her due date and it gets me SO EXCITED! Now, I have been pretty hormonal lately. A bit of a negative Nancy, stressed about the baby shower, and anything else I can be negative about... BUT I’m blessed to have a great support group to distract me from the crazy hormones as well as the secret project I’ve been working on the last month {the fundraiser for Kim+Chris}. I can’t believe we’re getting so close!!! I wish the hormones weren’t throwing me off. All I want to feel is bliss and excitement and impatience -but it’s equally balanced with fear, intimidation, and stress. I just try to keep reminding myself that it is ok to “not be stressed”. It’s ok to know that I am as prepared as I can be. It’s ok to say that I am excited and ready. What my heart wants more than anything is to hold her and look into her eyes. This waiting period mixed with crazy hormones is good at distracting me from that one focused thought. So I have to keep reminding myself. And sit and feel my belly.

Tuesday, December 10th – Week 31, Day 4 Physical Changes The last two days have been a little intense. I’m starting to experience what I would call “painful” side effects of pregnancy. The soreness and a crazy hard kick made me realize this journey isn’t necessarily easy, but it is so worth it. It truly is crazy experiencing how intense of a journey this is for myself. From the outside, a pregnant woman just looks ... Pregnant. But there are constantly things happening with her body that make her feel completely out of her “normal”. l was sad today when Phil had to leave for work. He’s been working a lot of overtime lately. He rubbed my belly and said -! 21 I’m still with you. I’m always with you. Layla, we are so lucky to have Phil.


Saturday, December 14th – Week 32, Day 1 MOOD SWINGS They are no joke. I wish there was a switch or dial or something --- I’d turn it to “joyful and glowing”. Sleep is hit or miss these days as well. I’m scared to go out in public when I’m working with a less than ideal amount of sleep hours, but I guess I’m going to have to get used to that. Haha.

Sunday, December 15th – Week 32, Day 2 Phil’s quote of the month “Wow. You’re really starting to put it on.” Baby Developments Her movements really startle me now. Today while I was driving, I seriously had to focus on what I was doing instead of Layla in my belly!

Monday, December 16th – Week 32, Day 3 Pre-natal Appointment Today my mom and I went to Carlene’s on the way to Greenville. Each appointment she checks my urine, feels the baby to see what position she’s in, measures her, and checks my heartbeat and blood pressure. Everything was normal except that this time I got to feel my baby’s head!!!!! I cried because it was the first time I was able to ever do that and visualize her. Pretty awesome stuff!

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This is surreal. And I am beyond grateful. Saturday, December 21st – Week 33, Day 1 3:00pm I went to Southside today to record the What’s Happening video for tomorrow. I wore black. Last week when my 32 week belly popped up on those big screens, I LAUGHED OUT LOUD because I looked like a veggie tale character. Seriously, if you had taken my legs off, I would have looked like a weeble wobble. HAHAHA. Although I changed up the visuals for this weeks’ video, my brain decided not to work today. You know how your brain sends messages back and forth at super speed on these little connectors? Well, I feel like a two year old was let loose inside my brain with a pair of scissors. Poor Chris. There will be so much editing with this one. Maybe next time he’ll set up the teleprompter -because this preggo brain thing is CRAY CRAY.

Friday, January 3rd - Week 35 “I think it’s going to be fun. It’s going to be our own little person.” - Becca “Oh my word. I can’t believe we’re allowed to have one.” - Phil

Saturday, January 4th – Week 35, Day 1 8:15pm at Chik-fil-ae I mistakingly ordered a #7 instead of a #2. There was no cheese on the grilled instead of fried sandwich. The fries were not salty. I tried to calm my burning mouth from an overwhelming taste of pepper. The milkshake top came of and the shake started running over and spilling. I reacted as if the world had just ended and started to cry. Phil pulled over and was so sweet and made everything better. Thankfully he ! kept his laughter and thoughts about my pregnancy hormones to himself :)

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Sunday, January 5th - Week 35, Day 2 My feet are swollen.

Friday, January 10th - Week 36 Appointment with Carlene Today I had my 36 week appointment! Layla’s heart beat is 160bpm and I am 75% thinned out and 1cm dilated!!! I know this doesn’t really mean anything -- but to me -- it means I am one step closer to meeting my little Layla, and making things a LOT more real!!! Ahhhhh!!!!

Saturday, January 11th - Week 36, Day 1 SHOWER DAY I am so so very excited about the shower today but physically feel like I got hit by a truck this morning! Lol. Pregnancy is full body intensive now. I don’t know how my friend Anna is surviving with a two year old! This is definitely not easy - but it does remind me that I really am in the final stretch! 9 months preggo and so excited to meet our little girl! My baby shower was beautifully pink in every way. From my pink face, to the pink balloons and cake --- and the bajillion pink little outfits that I can not wait to dress my little girl in --- it was definitely a wonderful way to celebrate the upcoming arrival of little miss Layla Rose! And Kim, Leigh, Chaley and my mom threw me a GORGEOUS shower!

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Week 37 I am officially FULL TERM!!!! Friday, January 17th – Week 37 Appointment with Carlene Yesterday I had my 37 week appt... and another cervix check. Before she checked me I left to use a Cottonelle wipe. I then sprayed my area with VS Pure Seduction body spray. A couple of hours later, Carlene called me to tell me that she had just gone into Victoria’s Secret asking for scented wipes!!!! LOLOLOL!!!! My thoughts today... Mary rode to Bethlehem On a donkey at 9 months pregnant. OUCH.

Sunday, January 19th – Week 37, Day 2 It’s getting EXCITING!!! Pretty sure I experienced my first official for real contractions today. Maybe like 8 of them between 3:30 and 8:00! I think she is getting ready to be in the best position for labor :) I seem to say a curse word the times I am alone with Phil when they happen... Hope I don’t scare my mom during labor...

Thursday, January 23rd – Week 37, Day 6 Contractions Today I had six contractions between one and two in the afternoon. Unfortunately, what it came down to was just pre-labor signs. Today I measured 2cm and 75% thinned out.

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Friday, January 24th – Week 38 Esta Mañana I woke up saying to Layla, “Get your big butt out of here. It’s time to come out now.” I have officially reached the “I’m ready for this baby to get out” point. You know you are nine months preggo when... You are equally excited about your purchase of Tums and Chocolate Moose Tracks ice cream. You view oxygen as a luxury. Your pillows take up half of your bed.

Tuesday, January 28th – Week 38, Day 4 Preggo Symptoms It’s getting really hard to breathe. And there’s not a lot of room for my food anymore... It seems to be finding it’s way back into my mouth hours after swallowing it... Ewwwwww. I want to have my baby today during our epic snow day.

Friday, January 31st – Week 39 Date Night with my Love Phil got off work early today and took me out to Margarita’s Mexican Grill for a dinner date. I had the yummiest virgin “pretty” strawberry daiquiri. We ended the night watching Despicable Me 2 and White House Down. {Which sucked - Phil}

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Saturday, February 1st – Week 39, Day 1 YAY for visitors! The past three days have been SO healing! I got to hang out with Chaley and see Leigh and Chloe for a bit. Today Crystal and Wendy spent the afternoon at my place. They helped me pack my diaper bag, brought me flowers and snacks, and took me to the mall for dinner and ice cream. I’m telling you, being around people helps pull me out of a funk faster than anything I know. It’s seriously the best pick-me-up from the discomforts of these last few days! Scene to remember: Me sitting with my legs spread eagle in the mall eating a double scoop chocolate chip cookie dough waffle cone. 7:30pm I had a pretty strong contraction.

Sunday, February 2nd – Week 39, Day 2 Things are getting much more intense.

Monday, February 3rd – Week 39, Day 3 Four days to go. My first thoughts this morning - ok - I’m ready to start intentionally walking now to help this baby to come on down. I want to hold my little girl so so so bad!!! I am just so happy that another day has started! Just one more closer to meeting her!!!! :) :) :) Baby Preparations My BACKUP/Emergency diaper bag is packed and in the car. Feeling {overly} ready. Haha. I don’t think I have ever prepared so much for anything in my life! And my taxes? They should be completely filed sometime this week. Phew. What in the world am I supposed to do once everything on my TO DO list is done??? I’m trying to save some things for tomorrow so that I don’t go crazy just sitting and twiddling my thumbs!

Oh, Layla! You have already turned my world upside down :)

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Tuesday, February 4th – Week 39, Day 4 Sweet Dreams I just dreamt about Phil and I nuzzling our daughter just moments after birth. It. Was. Perfect. Mom Date This afternoon I went out to Margaritas Mexican Grill {again}, walked at Target, and picked out Layla’s first three outfits -- all with my mom. It was a good day with great distractions.

Wednesday, February 5th – Week 39, Day 5 Honesty All right, belly of mine... I have our memories photographed and journaled, and have truly cherished out time together. But now, you are just getting way too big. How do I say this --I’m just not so into you anymore. 9:08pm When everything hurts, but there are no contractions... that’s when things start to seem pretty miserable. Ouch. Ouch. Ouch.

Thursday, February 6th, 10:43pm Our little Layla was born 13 hours and 35 minutes after my last post!

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Pregnancy Journal  

I have been pregnant now for 39 Weeks and 5 Days. This is my personal documentation of my journey up to this point.

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