I hit the 20 week mark of this pregnancy last Friday.
20 weeks is always such a BIG, surprising point for me to reach. Not only have little kicks added a whole new dimension to the reality of what’s going on, but there is a fair amount of shock to the realization that something big and huge – like a new life entering your existence – is REALLY going to happen. It’s not just a wild and marvelous idea like it seemed upon first seeing those two pink lines on a pregnancy test. The amount of time that had to pass for something that seemed too far away to think of as solid reality . . . has, quite suddenly it seems, half played itself out! And, with that, there is a sudden startling recognition that the other half of that time span will also pass.
And it isn’t just that! Every week I google what’s going on with this baby and his/her development and growth. (And most weeks my other kids ask “How big is our baby now?”) Forever . . . baby was just the tiniest speck of an existing being. First just lentil-sized. Then a blueberry. Why even at eight weeks, baby was still only the length of a kidney bean, and at 10 weeks little one was only just hitting the one inch mark. It was only three measly weeks ago that baby finally reached five inches – still an eternity away from being a full-sized newborn ready to come to this world. But then, around twenty weeks, they quit measuring “crown to rump” and begin talking in terms of full length. And quiet unexpectedly I jump from imagining a a pea-pod to a ten-plus-inch human! Ten inches! Suddenly, with a rather awed jolt, I can actually imagine a little baby ready to be placed in my arms!
I am, of course, eager to actually see this little person – to know what they look like, to nuzzle their soft cheeks, unbundle their scrawny legs, and to see if I’m even carrying a girl or a boy; but right now is kind of a lovely place for me. I have this sacred space of time to ponder on the meaning and miracle of this spirit coming to me – to think about it from its spiritual vantage point without having to yet factor in the exhausting realities and emotions that accompany adjusting to the demands of a newborn. There is maybe nothing as purely magical and powerful as a newborn. I already want to weep at how fast that phase will pass. But I am enjoying where I am right at this moment in this journey. I’m far enough removed from the fear and overwhelming responsibility I felt upon first having the impression that God wanted me to accept another child into our home that it no longer holds me tightly. I can feel fully the excitement and miracle of another soul being connected to me for all of eternity – when it might not have been. And I’m far enough from the work and readjusting of life that actually having a new baby entails for me that I don’t yet feel any anxiety about the impending strain. (And lest I sound ungrateful suggesting that having this baby will be stressful . . . let’s consider the truth that, as much as I will love having my baby here, I will not only be caring for ten kids and juggling the associated demands . . . but four of those “kids” will be under the age of five! [Four kids four and under! How on earth has this happened?? Haha.])
Anywho, that is all. Just a bit of my thoughts and feelings at this space in time. But, because I like a post to have at least something by way of photos, here are a few I recently took of some of the children in our primary for a Nativity slideshow one of our bishopric members is putting together. (This isn’t all of our primary of course! Just the first gathering of little shepherds and angels, etc.)
Also, while I was busily arranging kids, and telling them to stand right where I put them and not move, and hollering at them to look at me or quit poking their neighbor with their shepherd’s crooks, or to move a sheep from covering their face; another mom who was there texted me this little picture of Summer – who went and found a crown to add to her angel halo. I keep looking at it. I love her dear, little face.