It has been a very busy week around here and I have lots of updates to get to. I've been feeling very full lately, which is quite a change after so many years of feeling so empty. It's hard to believe that after six and a half months I still sometimes feel like this is not really happening, that I can't really have a baby growing inside. But somehow, against all odds, that's where we are and my heart is full.
Last weekend was our first baby shower. This one was scheduled first because it was in my husband's hometown (the town where we both went to college, got married, and lived for a few years before moving to Texas), which is a six-hour drive from our home. We know we won't be traveling that far again, so the time was right. It was such a sweet day. The shower was held in the home of a dear friend of mine who went through quite a few years of infertility way back when I had no idea about such things. She's not that much older than I am, but her years of infertility came before we had started trying to have children and it seems like so long ago to me now. She now has two daughters and a son after her years of waiting and battling severe endometriosis. Having the shower in her beautiful home was special to me because of that and because of what a great friend she is.
Three more dear friends of mine were also hostesses that day, and they did such a great job of decorating and preparing the wonderful food! I was delighted to have both of my sisters-in-law in town for the occasion as well. We had just over 30 people in attendance and I truly felt overwhelmed with joy at the love and generosity. A few of the people there were church friends who were around for our wedding shower 12 years ago. There were some friends there that day that we hadn't seen in many years and had been dearly missed. Above all, I felt surrounded by people who had spent years praying us through so much heartache before finally getting to this point of celebration. That made the day so special to me!
Oh, and yes, our car was absolutely FULL for the six-hour ride home because of their generosity! We were given plenty of wonderful things for Lily. Boy, do people like to buy clothes for baby girls! :) I loved it, though, and each and every gift I opened made my heart sing. I imagined her in those sweet little dresses. I imagined her in that car seat. I imagined her in her high chair for family meals. And I even imagined changing diapers, all with so much joy and gratitude for the opportunity to be in this position.
When I looked around the room I saw a few precious faces of women that I know have walked this road in some way. There were at least two who have faced infertility and at least four more who have babies in heaven. This was not lost on me for one second. I attempted to express my thanks to everyone there when it was over, but of course it came out as a jumbled, tearful mess. I hope that my message came through, though, and that everyone there knew what this means to me. Not just the gifts and not just their attendance that day, but the years and years of support and prayers that have gotten us here.
I don't have all of the pictures yet from that day (they are on a few different cameras) but I can share a couple. I may have more for next week, along with some from our second shower which is coming up on Friday of this week, hosted by my husband's co-workers.
Here is a pic of Lily's room (obviously still set up as a guest room) after we got home with all of her stuff. You can see why my heart is so very full!
Here is a closeup of that adorable wreath that was made by the shower host. I couldn't wait to get home and hang it on the door!
Also, last week I had a visit from a dear friend of mine who brought the most precious gifts, including this gorgeous canvas that she painted for Lily's room. We both cried when I opened it! Talk about my heart overflowing... I was so touched. I will treasure it and I can't wait to hang it in her room as a sweet reminder: "I prayed for this child and the Lord granted what I asked of Him." Thanks, GG!
One more update: I went to my OB appointment on Monday and everything is still looking good. My weight really jumped up there this time, as I'm sure you can tell from these recent pics, but the doc says she thinks I'm at a good weight for this stage. (Whew!) I will go again in 3 weeks because it will be time for my glucose screening, and after that it will be time to start going every 2 weeks! I can't believe it.