My dad suggested renaming my blog "Bearing Children in the Big Apple." That has definitely been the name of my game these past 8 months! And I have absolutely loved it.
Not that every day has been easy, and certainly challenges are yet to come, but we would ask for nothing else except as God wills. As the hymn goes, "Nor for ease that prayer shall be, but for strength, that we may ever live our lives courageously."
Carrying a child has been an incredible experience, and one that I wish I could remember!
The first moment when I really started to wonder if maybe I was pregnant was when my sense of smell turned into a superpower. One day I was just able to smell flowers from across the room, and soup wrapped up inside several bags, and every store and trash can that I walked by on the street. In fact, just recently I detected a small natural gas leak from our stove, and when the ConEd worker came to investigate, he was not surprised to find out I was pregnant. Apparently that happens a lot!
People always ask if I've had any unusual cravings, and I wish I had an answer, but as of today the answer is still no. We did, however, consume NYC's entire supply of pizza during my first trimester. Thankfully, they have kept making more. :)
We are waiting to find out the gender, and to be honest, that was more Jady's idea than mine! But I was happy to go along, and I expect that final old-fashioned moment of "It's a boy!" or "It's a girl!" will be even more special after all this anticipation. For the record, I predict a boy. But all the strangers on the street tell me it's a girl, so we'll see who's right. I love remembering that God knows, and that He has given us exactly what we need!
And I can't sing enough praises of our care providers, Midwifery of Manhattan. If you've watched the documentary, "The Business of Being Born," you've seen and heard from a couple of our ladies. I have enjoyed their warmth, their optimistic perspectives on natural births (and yet their complete acknowledgement of complications outside their control), the time they spend answering questions at each appointment, and just the entire midwifery model of care. We are hoping to deliver at the Birthing Center at St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital here in the city, but if not, we'll be on the next floor up at Labor & Delivery at the same place.
I think being pregnant in NYC has been some of my favorite time here so far! For one, I have been offered a seat on the subway during most of my rides--at least since I've been looking more obviously pregnant. Maybe this is working the system, but my trick is to unzip or take my coat off when entering the train and hold my baby bump... and within minutes someone usually tells me to sit down in their seat. In the south, courtesy is normal and nearly expected, but in New York, I am storing away all these nice moments for the days when rudeness and apathy seem to prevail! Another perk has been the friendliness of strangers. Those cashiers at West Side Market who never spoke a word or looked at me before? Now they are asking all about my pregnancy. And the rough men in front of me in line for the Harlem McDonald's bathroom? Now they're yelling at each other to let me use it first.
Our apartment has been slowly filling up with the cutest and tiniest of baby things, including a mini crib (from Craigslist, of course!) and changing table that fit perfectly in the corner of our bedroom. Being able to keep our nursery items simple has been a breath of fresh air! And although we already have more things than we even need, we are thankful to still have room for the baby. :)
Baby Copeland, we are ready to meet you and welcome you into our family!