Friday, August 31, 2007

The Distraction of Electricity Over this past weekend we spent 40 hours without electricity. It started Friday night about 7pm when a storm passed through and knocked out the power. (Thankfully we still had hot water.) This is very unusual for our area and we were surprised to find that our neighbors across the street all had power. We found out later that only about 35-40 houses in our neighborhood were out. As we sat there in the dark that night, under the faint glow of the street light across the street, I pondered how much we rely on electricity not just for the normal day to day operations such as the hair drying, dish washing, and microwaving, but for the distractions of everyday life. Jerry and I were forced to just sit there, literally, and talk in the romantic candle light. We talked about everything we could think of and enjoyed the candles that had been collecting dust for months. The candles in our fireplace had only been lit once since we put them in this spring - what a travesty! I pulled out every new, scented candle I've been forgetting to try and put them out. It was so hum of some distant appliance or even the quiet static of the baby monitor. Most importantly, no computer, Internet or *gasp* BLOG to distract us from what we should really be doing - spending time together. The next morning, the transformer down the street was repaired and we went back to life as normal - washing clothes, sending emails, and blow drying hair. But the story doesn't end here, a little more than 24 hours later, we hear a shocking "ka-pow!" and the power went out again. In some ways I was annoyed, I really wanted to crosstich that night and there is just no way to do that in the dark, even with a great flashlight! In other ways, it was a relief. There was no way I could catch up on some of my work projects or get sucked into the Internet that night. We sat outside watching the stars and gazing at the moon rising. It was cool outside and quiet - we sipped our coffee and talked softly. For once I was thankful for the lack of distractions...for being forced to do nothing but relax. It was as if God was trying to tell us in an indisputable way to just put the difficult week behind us and be still. Well, thanks Big Guy - we needed that!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

The Blossoming Belly Well, for those of you who don't know, Baby Powell v2.0 is on the way. This pregnancy has been very odd or maybe not odd in the "statistical significance" sense, but odd in the "not like the other one" sense. We tried for several months to get pregnant and after watching just about every other female family member get pregnant before me, we were finally blessed with the digital readout at the crack of dawn (6:30am 5/31) of "Pregnant." I was happy and excited but so bleary eyed that the tears ran down my cheeks on the outer rim of my eyes instead of the inner rim near my nose. Weird? Odd? Yeah, it was. Because we were on vacation, we promptly went back to sleep until Kayla woke up. The weeks following involved exponential weight gain (12 lbs in 6 weeks - thanks wacky thyroid!), nausea in the evening - what's that talk about "morning" sickness? Don't know about that... And being smacked on the head with a two by four fatigue at random times of day. For a couple of weeks, Jerry just tucked me in at about 9pm. Suddenly at 10 weeks - I came back to life! I could stay awake in the evenings! I tossed out my saltines that I had permanently attached to my person! I made it through the late afternoon without a snack! Ahhhhh...but then the belly popped out. And with a vengeance it went forth in its glorious round girth. There should be some law against "popping" before week 13. In one week, normal clothes became 2-3 inches too small. Maternity clothes from my previous pregnancy were all for the wrong season, so only a few worked at this stage. But all was not lost - $100 later - two pairs of pants and three shirts joined my life and brought me over to chic maternity land. Who knew that I looked so good in mint green? Or that the inventor of the "miracle pant" would now become a beneficiary in my will? Could sleek khaki pants and breast-hugging shirts somehow make me a better person? I guess that all remains to be seen. On July 11 we went in for my first midwife appointment. After all the talk about twins, she thought it best to do an early ultrasound verification. One little baby was hanging around in there - its little heartbeat flickering. All of a sudden - it started jumping around - thrashing its little arms and legs as if it knew it was on camera and as if to say, "Hi Mom and Dad - I'm doing good in here!!!" Our midwife laughed in surprise and said, "that is so unusual to see the baby moving this early." Well, as we have seen with Kayla, we don't have ordinary babies (and I mean this in the best possible way of course). Of course our baby would move around like mad at 9 1/2 weeks! Two weeks later (11 weeks or so), I felt that flutter feeling (Moms, you know what I'm talking about). Now with "normal" pregnancies this usually happens around 16-18 weeks. I stood there thinking to myself, "Naaaahhhhh, this is pretty early." It's as if this baby heard my thoughts and decided to do more times! I know without a doubt that was the baby moving. I don't care what anyone else says. My midwife confirmed today that without the placenta in front as it was with Kayla, it is pretty likely that I'm more sensitive to movement and I did feel this little one moving. At my appointment today we very easily heard the baby's heartbeat - slower than Kayla's, but very strong as if to say, "I'm strong and healthy, Mom and Dad." I'm pretty convinced that like Kayla, this baby is going to have a story to tell when we meet him or her for the first time. (Kayla's was a pretty intense story as she screamed bloody murder for 45 minutes straight right after she was born. No little baby wah, wah for her!) It's been very different than last time, but so calm and peaceful. It is odd, but I'm looking forward to giving birth. Maybe I am slightly naive as I did not even have one contraction with Kayla (c-section due to her size - 10lbs 3oz), but I have a sense of rightness with this whole process. As for now, the belly continues to grow. I rub it and dance often - just to make Kayla and Jerry laugh. Ironically, even though this blossoming is so important, so unique and so well, fun this time, I have not taken one picture of it in its spherical glory. I guess it's off to select the appropriate photo shoot look and start clicking away.