Ringing in the New Year…a week late
January 8, 2012 § 4 Comments
This holiday season has been awash with generosity that I can’t even begin to comprehend let alone qualify into writing, as well as surprises that, well, took us by surprise. (Note: I’m still pregnant–Mel hasn’t arrived just yet. :))
On Christmas Day, I came down with a yucky cold and am now pretty well past the point of being able to take medication safely. So, at the advice of my mom, dad, and sister (all medical folks in our family), I applied saline spray to my congested nostrils and eventually got some relief. No sooner did I recover from my cold than I came down with a nasty stomach bug. I thought it was something I had eaten for dinner on Monday night, but it hung around more stubbornly than food poisoning typically does. I gave it a fair shake, though, and waited the recommended 24 hours before calling my obstetrician’s nurse practitioner for advice. She told me to take Imodium, continue drinking lots and lots, and eat simple bland foods. With my insides feeling inside-out, I wanted nothing more than to just lay on the couch and mostly die. But Melanie had other plans…like kicking. I could tell my growing baby was hungry, in spite of my inability to ingest anything that even resembled food. So she kicked me. And rolled around. And squirmed. Oh, the squirming. I confessed to my nurse practitioner that, even though I loved feeling her move and was reassured by her movements, I just wanted her to rest for a while because it felt so horrible while my stomach was in the midst of its own crisis. So in addition to feeling like my world was ending because of my afflicted bowels, I felt like the world’s worst mother. What kind of a mother doesn’t want her unborn child to grow and move around?
After following the nurse’s orders, I am back to the land of the living. Robert, however, seems to have caught my bug. It’s been miserable in the Hab. house for a little while.
We’re counting our blessings, though. And there are many blessings to count.
As I mentioned, we were overwhelmed by our family’s generosity this Christmas. Even Melanie got presents! In addition to those gifts, we are blessed by our fortunate pregnancy. Although I’m not quite full-term yet (January 23rd!), Melanie could come any day and survive. I’ve had extraordinary ligament pain since October, but that’s been my only complaint. I know how lucky I am, and I’m grateful for that. We’re also blessed to be starting off our new year with employment. Robert’s working full-time and even has an overloaded teaching schedule to get us a little extra cash flow, even though it is difficult to teach that number of classes. This allows me to teach a single course on-line, so I can work from home. He and I spent a great deal of last week working on establishing that on-line class (I mostly stole his lessons from him) so that all I have to do is grade papers. The lessons will go live according to timed release dates. Teaching a single course on-line will let me focus on Melanie, as well as on finishing my dissertation. (In fact, the dissertation goal is to get the next chapter draft to my chair in the next week.) I’ll most likely take the summer off, which I am able to do for the second year in a row because of Robert’s willingness to overload his teaching schedule. This allows me to take advantage of a sort of “paid” maternity leave (even though I don’t technically get paid maternity leave as an adjunct instructor) while also putting off the time when I have to go back to work. I’ve observed a couple of really strong friends of mine make that decision to get back to work after their maternity leave is up, and I truly admire them for their strength. Sometimes I wonder if I’ll be as strong as they are, or if I’ll cop out with the option to just teach on-line for a while. But in the meantime, I am blessed to put off that decision for another day.
Despite our rocky end to 2011 and our physically painful start to 2012, I am convinced this will be the best year of our lives.
More later–I am going to work on a little art project for my daughter’s nursery today. Pictures to follow. 🙂
I hope everyone enjoyed their respective December festivities and that you all were able to ring in the New Year happily!