Well, today was our first day of maternity leave together. We went grocery shopping and I went on some kind of cooking/baking binge. My way of nesting, perhaps?? Probably more like my way of trying to ingratiate myself with your daddy so that he will be willing to do anything to make it work where I don't have to go back to a full-time job at the end of my maternity leave. hehe. Sneaky, sneaky! I made a King Ranch Casserole (I knew they tasted good because your Grandma Barbara makes it from time to time) from scratch. I think it was the first time in my life that I boiled a full chicken, extracted the innards, took the skin off, deboned it, etc. It was a lot of work but it paid off. Your dad said it was wonderful, even better than his mom's. You know that has to be good! I also made a cheesecake. Your dad is anxiously awaiting for it to finish its 4-hour mandatory chilling in the fridge; in the meantime, we're watching Monday Night Football. Rather, your dad says he's watching the game but really he's sleeping off some muscle relaxers and pain killers he had to take for his back pain. Somehow the grocery store trip and the cooking took all day and I tired out. Your dad and I did some more walking today, but only from the house down the street to see your Grandma Barbara. I joked that you may be confused as to what direction you're supposed to be going because you always seem to try to push your way through the right side of my belly, haha.
It's just to the point where everyone is just eager to meet you. I thought I should take this opportunity to tell you again what an answer to prayer that you are. Your dad and I quit using any form of contraception in February 2008. We had just been to your Grandpa Nall's birthday party and seen his friend Troy's large family (they have like 8 or 9 kids). It made me think... and we decided, yes, we were ready. At the time, your daddy and I were going on 7 years of marriage and I was in the last year of respiratory school so even if we conceived right away ,by the time you would come around, I would have graduated. We thought we would have no trouble getting pregnant. Well, fast forward through three years of disappointingly negative home pregnancy tests and saying "it will happen when it's meant to" in answer to the well-intentioned questions from family and friends as to when we would have kids. I had even started on a quest with a fertility doctor to see where the problem was; I believe it was December of last year when this occured. The doctor suspected PCOS from some of the inital test results like the ultrasound and wanted to do some extra testing for a definitive diagnosis. They also wanted your daddy to come in to give a "manly sample." Thing was, the test they wanted me to do needed to be done on the third day of my cycle. With not knowing exactly when my cycle would start and their Woodlands office being only open one day a week, it was nearly impossible to be able to "schedule" anything and they wouldn't accept a walk-in. I got fed up and was intending on asking around about some fertility specialists close by whose offices were open M-F. Then, there comes along the chili cook-off and pinewood derby at church on January 29. Pastor John MacFarlane, being the awesome person he is, asked a very John MacFarlane-esque question as he was getting food in the potluck line. He looked me straight in the eye with his direct Jesus-like gaze and asked, "So, April, what is your focus in life right now?" Even though there was a line behind him, I knew he wasn't moving because he was genuinely looking for an answer. With that kind of direct question, I couldn't help but give a direct answer. "Family," I replied. He asked, "Your nephews and niece?" "Well, yes, but mostly a family of my own." He nodded in seriousness, reached out a hand, put a pointed finger on my belly, and said simply but with authority, "In Jesus name, move!" And the moment was over, he had to move on, the potluck line continued. But I claimed those words as healing for my body and awaited for God to reveal an answered prayer. Two days later at the doctor's office, as already detailed in a prior post, I was sick with sinus issues and realized, from the doctor's routine question regarding the first day of my last period, that I was two days late. Sure enough, I got a positive home pregnancy test. Now some would say that the pastor's strange words were just a coincidence, but I think maybe, perhaps just maybe, you, in fertilized egg form, did indeed move and implant in a favorable spot at last. Then again, maybe you were already set but God still wanted me to know that my inward heartache and feelings of loss had been noticed and that the good news I was about to receive about you was indeed a gift.
As before when we were trying to get pregnant, your daddy and I are still waiting, but this time we are waiting with the knowledge that it is now only a matter of days before our dream is realized before our eyes. Even as impatient as everyone is (including your dad), this kind of waiting is far better.
Whenever you're ready baby girl, we're ready for you.
P.S. Ha, and what do you know? Of course your daddy perks up as the cheesecake's allotted time in the fridge winds down and he slyly inquires about it. He says it's sooo good... better than Sara Lee's. If he's just trying to make me feel good, it's working :-)