Sweet Pud is now a whole pound of wonderful! According to the What to Expect app on my iPhone, he is about the size of a spaghetti squash (8 inches crown to rump).
Pud is busy developing his senses about as rapidly as he can. I can tell, too, because he’s been rockin’ and rollin’ and thumpin’ around in there. Apparently, he’s able to use his sense of touch some now, and is grabbing at anything he can explore- the umbilical cord, his face, and probably his feet. The other cool development is that he can perceive the difference between light and dark now. What a fun experiment to take a flashlight and shine it over my belly in a dark room. At 4:30 in the afternoon on a dark and rainy day, you’d think there’d be movement, but no. He sleeps on just like his dad. Ha! I think I read that he’s sleeping about as much as a newborn: 12-14 hours per day. You can imagine, then, what he’s doing the other 12 hours.
Parent-wise, this week has been exhausting. Work stresses and difficulty sleeping took a toll on both of us this week, and we’ve rewarded ourselves with a day off today. Couldn’t have picked a better day to take a break; the weather outside is awful. The storms Friday night were so loud that Bandit was shaking and B had a hard time staying asleep. I kept half-waking up to the flashes of lightning, but fought hard for the much-needed sleep. I think Callie was the most successful and comfortable sleeper throughout the storm, because she did the wisest thing- hid her eyes in B’s neck and let Bandit snuggle up close with his head on her (something she doesn’t usually tolerate for very long), which I’m sure blocked out some of the noise. For most of the storms Saturday night, Bandit was fine sleeping in his crate, but whatever racket was going on overhead this morning brought him back up on the bed to drape over his dad’s belly for reassurance and safety.
My belly is beautifully marked with a semi-circle of stretch marks rippling out from my navel, much like what you see when you drop a pebble in a puddle. I can tell every time he moves farther up (this week, he’s now about an inch above my navel), because new stretch marks follow. It’s amusing to me how many women hate these marks with a passion; I am marveling at how they mark the many transitions and changes Pud and I are going through, and seeking to find the beauty in them. They’re painful sometimes, especially when he rips me new ones (and he does rip new ones; no gentle stretching-mama-out for this little guy), but overall, they don’t bother me that much. Maybe also because I have absolutely no desire to go running around in a bikini someday. New for this week is the advent of heat rashes, which I’m dealing with the best I can, while daydreaming of swimming in nice, cool water.
Ben touched my belly last night and said, “WOW! This is what pregnant feels like. Your belly is hard- like touching a ripe watermelon!” I’m also “huge,” but we know that I’m not really- I have 18 more weeks of ripening left to go.
Last night, both of my hips were bothering me to no end, and I broke the rules and slept on my back for awhile- not flat on my back, but nonetheless. It felt great! I still try to slip into my favorite tummy positions sometimes, but that’s no longer an option, even with pillow supports. *sigh*
At least my service dog knows to come and support my back now. She’s awesome. While I’m on my left side, she snuggles in the length of my back and provides a very solid, very firm wall of support to keep my body in alignment. I should SO start shoving her out of our bed, but when she does things like that, which help me to sleep better, it’s difficult and she knows it.
She really only became so attached to sleeping with us all night after Pud entered the equation, so I’m sure she’s protecting us by staying ever closer (in bed, instead of next to the bed). Guess that can be something we work on when my work schedule changes and I can go to bed early enough to be able to deal with being consistent with the rules all night long. Callie’s required to have some bed privileges because that’s how she wakes me up for any nighttime or early-morning alerts. How else do you think we knew that a foster puppy needed to go potty in the dead of night?
Callie and Bandit gave us a glimpse last weekend, when we babysat a friend’s baby for a few hours, into how fabulous they will be with our baby. At first, Bandit was so excited to see the baby, he was doing his loud Aussie welcome-and-let-me-show-you-around speech. This, of course, was a bit overwhelming for a child unused to talking Aussies. Callie, old hat that she is, was sniffing his heinie and telling me that he definitely needed his diaper checked. Great call, Callie girl- changed his diaper and his tears stopped immediately! When the baby fell asleep and we laid him down for his nap, they both quietly checked in on him a couple of times. Callie came running when he woke up and started crying. While B held him and talked with him, Bandit rested immediately in front of B, and allowed baby to pat his head a couple of times. It’s nice to know that I’m not wrong when I tell people that our dogs will be very accepting and very willing to take care of our Pud. I look forward to our resident tattletale telling me when he’s climbing the fridge or in the cabinets. Our perimeter control system will also do a great job of keeping him from running off and out of bounds. We are going to be spoiled parents- the thought of raising a rambunctious and active young boy without the assistance of these two furballs is now beyond me.
One of these days, I’m going to have to catch the two of them on video singing kids’ songs. It is absolutely a hoot- and Pud loves it already. He hears them singing and he stops to listen. When they stop, he starts wiggling around again.
We are now 2 weeks away from being able to give birth and have our Pud survive outside my womb. WOW. I’m certainly NOT in a rush. I can wait 18 more weeks, but it’s amazing to think about how well God prepares our little bodies and how much He’s allowed medical men to learn about helping them to have a chance at life when they are so very small.A name has been selected, but his final name will not be announced until his birth and we see his sweet face. For now, you can prepare to welcome (and no opinions now, folks- if you say you hate it, it will definitely be his name): Aaron Absalom Andrew Eli Elijah Elisha Ezekiel Ezra Gabriel Hezekiah Ian Isaiah Jadon Jaron Joseph Josiah Kennedy Laurence Luke Lucas MacArthur Matthew Michael Moses Nehemiah Noah Peter Raphael Richard Samson Sean Simon Theodore Timothy Tobias Zachariah Zebediah McG. Clearly, we’re going for the world record of long names. His nickname remains Pud.
The crib has arrived. Let the assembly begin!