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There is so much unknown during a pregnancy.  What will the labor/birth/baby/nursing/sleeping/routine/marriage, etc. be like?  One unknown that I’ve been thinking about a lot is being a working mom.  I’m pretty sure I’ll want to work part-time once our baby comes, and financially, I’ll need to work.  But my questions have more to do with when I will be ready to go back and how much I will want (and need) to work.  Gregg will most likely be the one to be taking care of our baby on the days that I’m working, so I’m comforted that he will at home with our boy.  I’m also thankful that they’ll have this time just the two of them, but I think I’m also a little jealous.  He’ll be there and I won’t.  What if something amazing happens and I miss it?

Sometimes when I have questions like these, I’ll google what other bloggers have to say.  I went on a search yesterday, and came across a Norwegian mom who was ranting about the difference between American maternity leave and Norwegian maternity leave.  In Norway, moms get a year’s worth of paid maternity leave.  Shut up.  Not what I want to hear.  Their taxes are exponentially higher than ours, right?  I’ll tell myself that they are.  I need to ask my friends about going back to work, but I know that every mom, baby, and situation is so different.  The question is what’s right for us, and I don’t know.  And I won’t know until we’re there and he’s here.  That’s it.  But I want to know now, please.

I feel God being really stern with me on this questions.  Trust me, child.  Weird and cool that I’m still His child even as I’m learning/preparing to be/becoming a mom.

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More first trimester thoughts

I’ve become very introspective in the past couple of weeks.  And I love it.  Maybe that’s weird, but I’m finding comfort in going into myself(?)  Sorry to sound hyper-spiritual.  Its been a little strange because I’ve been craving community and people that know me, but I’ve been wanting to be myself and read and sit in the hammock and…just be.

My most recent visit to the OB/Gyn was empowering.  I’ve been hesitant to get super worked up about wanting to have a natural labor.  I’ve seen friends be absolutely devastated when their birth didn’t go as they expected.  I didn’t want that for them, and I don’t want that for me.  I’ve been protecting myself from the possibility of this kind of disappointment.  Also, after working in the hospital with pregnant women both right before and after they have their babies, I’ve seen the outcome of different types of delivery is basically the same.  When a healthy baby is born, it doesn’t seem to matter how their baby was delivered.  But the process (the pregnancy and the birth) is important, I missed that before.  I talked to my OB about how I’m used to being an observer, but, now that I’m a participant, I’m beginning to see things differently.  Also, not working in the hospital any more, I think I’ve gotten some of my compassion back and lost some of my cynicism.  That place does it to ya.

My Ob/Gyn encouraged me that its okay for me to have an opinion and to want to approach my pregnancy, labor and birth in a specific way.  She encouraged me to write down the interventions that I would want and not want.  To this, I told her that I know how nurses respond when a patient rolls into the unit with a Birth Plan.  They roll their eyes and prepare for the worst.  (What is it with nurses?  I think, we’re both the meanest and nicest people in the world.)

I’m developing my pregnancy/childbirth/parenting reading list and loving it.  I’m open to suggestions.

Last week Gregg received 321 chickens in the mail. Unfortunately, some of them have died.  (They trampled each other.)  But, as survival of the fittest continues to prove true, many of them are alive and strong and chirping away in our shed.  Gregg has set up heat lamps to keep them warm, and they have mason jar watering concoctions set up to quench their thirst.  They also have some kind of chicken feed to eat.  Life is good for the baby chicks.  Now, we only have to wait 3, 4, or 5 months, and they will start laying colorful eggs for us (and other willing Eastern Shore residents) to eat.

During the trampling, Gregg created an “Infirmary” for the baby chicks.  I volunteered to/Gregg made me help pull out the weaklings and sicklings from the heap of healthy chicks and into the “Infirmary.”  Good thing I’m a nurse.  This is the first time that my feet have been covered with bird feces from helping the sick.  It may not be the last.

Read more here:

Farmer Gregg

Farmer Gregg to the Rescue

Infirmary

Cutie Chick

This is an old picture of Gregg and me. But he's got his beard going for the winter, so I feel like its appropriate.

My husband, Gregg, wants to be a farmer.  About three years ago he worked on a sweet potato farm in Machipongo, VA.  We started dating during his two month stint on the farm.  After he finished his time on the farm, he was offered a job to stay on as a permanent employee.  He turned the job down to move to San Francisco (where I was living at the time) to date me.  He’s had odd jobs throughout our time in SF and in Knoxville.  He keeps coming back to farming.  He wants to farm in Knoxville, but starting one from scratch both on his own or with a friend has proved to be too risky and too difficult.  After coming to this conclusion, we recalled the sweet potato farm job offer.  We wondered if that would still be available to him.  Gregg called the farmer who said over the phone that he did, in fact, have an opportunity for Gregg.  At first, during our conversations, moving to Virginia to farm was Plan B.  But, as less and less opportunities arose for him in Knoxville, it became Plan A.  As a nurse/newly turned nurse practitioner as of August 2011, I am flexible in the job department.  I was on board if this was what he wanted to do.

What I like about Gregg as a farmer:

1. The food.  Gregg has completely changed the way that I think about food.  I enjoy it now.  Not as much as he does, but I appreciate a good meal so much more now than I did before I knew him.

2. The organic movement.  It finally hit me yesterday that I want to be a part of this movement.  The sweet potato farm has been a part of the movement for thirty or so years before everyone else was wanting local, sustainable, organic, free-range, grass-fed, hormone-free, pesticide-free food.  I realized yesterday that all of the aforementioned words describe how we have been created to eat.  Yes, its trendy and more expensive, but I decided that I cannot eat any more chicken meat that turns to mush in my hands.

3. Learning to trust.  Being a farmer is certainly not the easy road, or so I’ve heard.  Becoming a farmer has not been easy either.  But I’m learning to trust Gregg and his dreams for our family.  I’m learning to trust during the transition, which has not been easy.  I know that it has been good for me and for us.  I’m sure that there will be more of this learning to trust thing in our future.

4. Farmer=Businessman (the good kind).  Confession:  I’m an eavesdropper.  The other day, I was trying not to eavesdrop on Gregg as he was talking to his boss-to-be, but I couldn’t help it.  Eavesdropping is an instinct of mine that I cannot avoid.  But!  What I eavesdropped (not sure if that’s a word) was worth celebrating.  Gregg was becoming a businessman right before my ears.  Not a suit and tie wearing, bossypants businessman, but a taking initiative, talking straight, and still being a good person businessman.

Farming, here we come.