Okay...so not necessarily the world, but Luke was in international waters, traveled to a place for which his mommy and daddy needed passports stamped and enjoyed every bit of the non-stop food opportunities that accompany a cruise. In fact, he quite enjoyed eating about every hour and a half!
I didn't write much on the trip...really only the first day because we were busy enjoying ourselves. Which of course means that I have a million things in my head that I want to get out for Luke to know and will just have to probably do in stages. This was what I wrote from our first full day:
In these last few months, I *thought* I had been out and about--dealing with 'those' questions and fairly effectively, at that.
Nothing like a cruise ship full of strangers who come to be new BFFs with all their shipmates to give me some perspective.
"When are you due?"
"Is this your first?"
"Oh, I'm so sorry."
Peppered with the appropriate consolation looks, of course, and then depending on where you are or with whom you're speaking, awkward silence or continued conversation. Awkward silence in the elevator; continued (and kind and compassionate) conversation at breakfast or dinner.
Sometimes, it's as easy as, "You look really nice pregnant. Some people these days look so..." and the words are mumbled by the little old ladies making the statement but not wanting to essentially say they think there are some pregnant ladies wearing things they find inappropriate.
Or, my reply of, "No, he's our second," followed by, "Oh, how wonderful! Congratulations!"
Others--more difficult. "No, he's our second," followed by, "Oh, how wonderful! How old's your first?" or "Oh, but look at you now...you look great and you'll have a healthy baby this time." (One of these days, I'll have the courage to say, "My son WAS healthy. Perfectly beautiful and healthy. Which makes it all the more tragic, doesn't it?" Or, when someone tells me, "Everything happens for a reason," I will be able to respond with, "So...what do you think the reason my baby died was?")
Of course, their comments are well-intentioned, but so indicative of most people's inclination to see a smile and believe all is well. I don't blame them. I'd like to look in the mirror and smile and believe I have the perfect life...great husband, family, friends, home, comforts, new baby on the way and celebrating with a lovely cruise.
But as I told John yesterday, as nice as this vacation is--and it IS NICE!--I'd rather be at home trying a new food with Matthew or trying to get a stain out of his cloth diaper.
John said, "That's a given."
So, when it's a given that your reality is not what you thought it would be, you adjust.
I'm reading Pete Wilson's Plan B: What to Do When God Doesn't Show Up the Way You Think He Should.
Great title. Very appropriate. And, I have to say, even just starting the book, I hope at some point he notes that when it's too late for God to show up the way you think He should (like your child is dead and not coming back), it's never too late to realize He's always showing up the way He's going to show up and there are blessings in that.
It takes some time to see them (and will probably continue to take the rest of my life), but that's where people get the idea that time heals. Time doesn't heal. Time is just God's way of helping you acclimate to the way it will be, the Plan B, if you will. (My apologies to Pete Wilson if that's what he says somewhere in his book. If he does, I concur.)
We really had a lovely time, and I have lots of pictures for Luke to have. I'll post them soon. For now, the update on Luke is pretty benign. We didn't see any doctors this week. This was the first week since April (save our 2ww) that I have gone without seeing a doctor for Luke. Weird. He's doing well, though, and loving his food. He wiggles a lot when I am hungry and he wiggles a lot right after I've eaten. I measured my waist before we left and I was 35 inches (so a gain of 5 inches since 8 weeks) and I weighed myself when we got home today and was 109.2! So...that's a net gain of 9.2 pounds. Not too bad for 21 weeks, and pretty funny how quickly it is adding on! I'm going to have to pull my pillow out because those places in my back that were so uncomfortable with Matthew are rearing their heads again. I'm also going to talk to Dr. Polko on Monday about my breathing and what I am calling stomach shocks. I am having a really, really difficult time getting full breaths (and it's not my asthma) and there are times when I move (not even really doing anything special) and it feels like someone is electrocuting my stomach. My guess is that it's just nerves that I am hitting the wrong way, but I never, ever, ever felt anything like that with Matthew, so I'd rather be safe than sorry. My scar is also getting bigger and puffier and tougher, so Dr. Shonekan told me to rub bio-oil in it often because there's really not much to do...for that or for the rib/ab muscle pain. Every time I see her, she always looks so sweetly at me and reminds me that getting pregnant as quickly as we did after what happened was bound to bring these things on, and we're so grateful for Luke that we of course will deal with anything, but it's nice to have your doctor feel sorry for you because she understands that though you are carrying a miraculous little blessing, it's still hard.
Sometimes I think people forget that...pregnancy is hard. It doesn't mean I am not grateful or would trade it for anything; it means that I'm human and no one enjoys being in pain, so having compassionate doctors that let you know that even though there's nothing really they can do but to tell you that you'll have to suck it up, at least they feel sorry for you in telling you that.
Here are two 21 weeks pictures:
...And More Food!! Hooray!
Here's the update on Luke's growth:
Week Twenty One: Nourishment evolves
|You are 21 weeks pregnant. (fetal age 19 weeks)|
Your baby's bone marrow has started making blood cells, a job done by the liver and spleen until this point. The placenta has provided nearly all of your baby's nourishment, now your baby will begin to absorb small amounts of sugar from swallowed amniotic fluid.
Based on the size of baby's head, which is about 2 inches (5cm), the date of birth can be determined to within one week. The fetus is steadily gaining fat and has grown a whitish coat of a slick, fatty substance to protect skin in amniotic fluid and to ease delivery.
In girls, the vagina is formed and the ovaries already contain over six million eggs which will be reduced to about 400 by the time of puberty. For boys, the testes begin to descend from the abdomen this week. (Boys don't produce sperm until puberty).
The baby can hear and recognize the mother's voice, and may respond to some types of music.