To you…at 32-34 weeks.

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Dear Belly Baby,

You are so close to meeting your family! Can you believe it? We are getting more and more excited with each day and week that passes and just know that you’re going to be here before we know it.

My body has been undergoing tremendous changes these past few weeks. Not only has my belly multiplied in size many times over but I’m starting to feel the weight gain in my back, hips, and pelvis. Everyone says I’m carrying you much more out front than I did Savannah which could explain the pressure I’m feeling in my lower back. Plus, this is about the time that my hips and pelvic bones are supposed to start spreading in preparation for your birth and I can certainly feel that activity taking place.

This pregnancy has been so similar and yet so different from my first. Sometimes I’m unsure if I just don’t remember all of the nuances or if I’m really experiencing them differently. I do know that by now, I was going to the bathroom at least five times a night with Savannah. With you, I only seem to get up about three times which is good because getting out of bed has become incredibly painful. I’m suspecting I have symphysis pubic dysfunction this time around although I haven’t checked with the doctor to confirm. It’s nothing serious and just means my ligaments in my nether regions are becoming a little too relaxed and stretchy which makes them hurt like hell. I vaguely remember the feeling of being kicked in the groin with Savs but this is much more severe. Once I’m up and moving it seems to go away for the most part so I can’t complain too much but it has made sleep uncomfortable.

Sleep…ah, such a long forgotten pleasure. Between the SPD pain, the tossing and turning, constant need to pee and the crazy dreams I haven’t slept well in months. In fact, I don’t actually remember the last time I went to bed and didn’t wake up until my alarm went off at 6 am. Crazy! After going down this road before, I know this is all preparing me for life with a newborn but I must say, it’s almost harder during pregnancy because I don’t have the cute little baby to snuggle in the middle of the night. I am definitely looking forward to sleeping on my back and stomach again and to dreamless nights.

Now that I’m done complaining, I can let you know all of the exciting things taking place in preparation for your arrival. There have been lots of baby sprinkles this month. Your Nona threw one for me with the family, your God and Auntie Kim threw one with my closest girlfriends and even my awesome colleagues at work surprised me with a little shower. You are already spoiled rotten which isn’t easy to do when it’s baby #2 and we don’t know the gender! Still, you’ve gotten some pretty adorable clothes, lots of accessories and gift cards galore. Most importantly, you have a whole network of people dying to meet you and love on you.

In addition to the parties, we’ve made some good progress on your nest. I’ve been shopping and crafting so your wall hangings are coming along. Your poppy spent two days painting – in the middle of a crazy heat wave, I might add – and the color scheme in your room is awesome. And your Nona’s been helping us arrange your furniture so it’s both feng shui and functional. Of course, Savannah’s helped by breaking in your new rocker and reading all of your books. I hope to put most of the finishing touches on it this weekend and then it’s just a matter of time until it’s all yours.

Most of all, we’ve been preparing both mentally and emotionally for your arrival. Your dad and I talk a lot about how life is going to change when you get here – don’t worry, we did the same thing before Savannah was born. It’s hard to believe we’ll find the time in the day to be the dedicated parents we hope to be to two love bugs and a furbaby but just like everything in life, I know it’ll work out. We’ve also been talking to your sister about her new role as a big sister. We got a great book called Waiting for Baby which she loves reading and imagining herself as the main character. She is very affectionate with my belly and is adamant that we refer to her as a Big Girl rather than a baby now. As I’ve said all along, there are going to be growing pains but I can’t imagine a kid better suited to be an older sibling than our Savs. You are so lucky to have her pave the way for you, munchkin.

Your dad and I snuck off to La Jolla for a little babymoon last weekend. We talked a lot about your name – still no final verdict but the list is shrinking, tried to imagine what your birth day will be like and how it’ll be similar and different from Savannah’s, and shared our hopes and dreams for our kids and our family. As always, it was so nice to spend that time with him and reflect on how far we’ve come as a couple and discuss all of our plans for the future.

You are still an active little bean and we love watching you roll around in my belly at night. You are in position now which is always reassuring at this point in pregnancy. My fibroid is still manageable and the doctors don’t expect it’ll present any complications during birth. All in all, we’re as prepared as we can be. I have my pre-baby checklist that I’m slowly working my way through but I’m not nervous about getting everything done before you arrive. It’ll all work itself out!

I have 2.5 more weeks of work and then maternity leave kicks in and I’m very ready for the break. I’ll be home for 4.5 months – exactly what I did with Savs. It’s the perfect about of time to bond with you without feeling robbed of the beauty and chaos of the “early days.” With Savs, I felt ready to return to work by the end and knew she was at a good point to start daycare. I’m hoping the same is true this time around.

You are such a gift already and now that we’re exactly one month out from your due date I can barely contain my anticipation. Keep growing healthy and strong, know you are loved already, and prepare for a life that is as beautiful as we can make it.

Loving you always,

Your mama

34 weeks – pregnancy #1

34-2

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