Photos by JOIELALA
Well, Spring has officially arrived! Lilac’s are blooming everywhere around my neighborhood and the birds have moved in again to the big tree outside of my window. We are already talking Easter plans and Mother’s day getaway ideas and it’s hard to believe winter is already behind us. This weekend I even shopped for a new swimsuit, which I quickly realized was a terrible idea at 15 weeks pregnant. It’s strange, this pregnancy thing. 3 years ago I got pregnant with Rylee (totally unexpected and unplanned) at a time when my health was pretty poor. I had recently been diagnosed with both gluten and dairy allergies after a two year battle with chronic stomach pain. It’s still a wonder my husband asked me to marry him at one of the lowest points in my life…..but I guess that’s how I knew the depths of his love for me. One year after we were married, we were pregnant, and I was scared. I had no idea if I was capable of growing a child in this body I was so convinced was fighting against me. I was pretty underweight to begin with, so my doctor suggested I try to gain around 40 pounds. That number made my eyes pop out of my head, but if that’s what the goal was, I was set on reaching it. Ironically, with each week, my pain grew less and less. I was starving…..ALL the time. So I allowed myself to eat, and often times the foods that I wasn’t supposed to. And as my appetite increased, I soon realized that my “forbidden foods” no longer affected me the way they used to. I tested pizza and breads, yogurt and pasta…..nothing. Food had never tasted, or felt, so good. I call Rylee my miracle baby. Because she was. After struggling with my health for so long, this baby….the one that I was so scared for, the one I was not even certain I was capable of carrying….healed me. In the end I only gained a shocking 18 pounds, far from the doctors orders. But for the first time in a long time, I was able to sense what my body needed, and I listened. It was like a re-set button was pushed. I delivered a healthy 6lb baby and my food allergies were something of the past. Rylee changed my life in every good and perfect way.
Fast forward to this pregnancy and I think my story will look a lot different. Not bad, maybe just a little more “normal”…if there is such a thing in pregnancy. I started at a much more healthy weight, and I’m already steadily gaining. You can’t tell much in clothes, but the bump is definitely fast approaching. Maybe the suggested 30lb weight gain this time around will be a reality! Who knows. I know that even if I gain 60 I’ll still probably be able to fit in this dress….so, there’s a win ;)
I keep bringing myself back to the idea of trust. That I can only control what I can control and the rest is up to God. Letting go of my fears, what if’s and expectations, and instead, looking at this journey with optimism and with faith that everything will be ok. The next time I visit the doctor I will know if this bump is a boy or a girl….two weeks can’t come soon enough.