I am 30 weeks pregnant today, and I am starting to feel it.
Apparently the nesting instinct has set in, because there are suddenly several dozen projects that I want to accomplish before baby comes. The list includes organizing baby clothes, spring cleaning the house, raking the yard, starting a garden, researching and purchasing new cloth diapers, and weeding out last year's unnecessary documents from the filing cabinet. And of course, this is in addition to my regular chores, caring for children and husband, and the occasionally necessary nap. The odds of being able to complete even half of my goals seems to diminish as my belly grows larger, my energy level grows smaller, and my due date grows closer. Coupling these factors with the spring weather that has finally arrived, you can expect to see fewer blog posts from me in the next ten weeks, as I prepare my home, mind, and body for our new addition!
My varicose veins seem to be under control for now, as long as I consistently sleep with my feet on a pillow, wear support stockings throughout my waking hours, and avoid activities that trigger pain. While my legs are still unsightly, and I am starting to hope that I will never be pregnant in summer (a bathing suit is definitely not a possibility right now!), I am thankful that I have not been in too much pain.
Meanwhile, I am beginning to feel uncomfortably large. My belly feels stretched and tight, and sometimes my back hurts. In fact, right now I am leaning against a warm rice pillow, enjoying the pleasant heat. This rice pillow is one of the most useful things I have ever sewn, and so easy too: just stitch two squares of fabric together on three sides (you could use a machine, but I did it by hand), fill with uncooked white rice, and sew shut. Then microwave the whole thing for two minutes, and you have an instant heat pack to relieve sore muscles. I use it for backaches and headaches, and it was wonderful for early labor contractions when I was pregnant with Hayden. You can make rice pillows in whatever size and shape you wish (long thin neck pillows are easy, and make nice gifts)...in fact, you may want to make more than one, because if you are like me, you will find that your whole body wants to enjoy the comforting warmth!
Speaking of warmth, there is a cozy bed with pillows and blankets calling me to come rest before I start my busy day of cleaning tomorrow, so I think I will head there soon. As I drift off to sleep (filled with vivid dreams, no doubt, as my sleep generally is while pregnant), and feel the exciting movements of a baby who wakes up whenever I stay still, I will be meditating on some comforting verses from Matthew 11:28-29. I love the way the Amplified Bible explains it:
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.]
Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls.
I do not have to be overwhelmed with a long to-do list or my lack of energy to accomplish it all. I do not need to give up in despair when I inevitably fail. The King of Kings has called me to His side, and there I find refreshment. While pregnant, my body may require extra sleep, but even more important is this rest for my soul.
The comfort that I find in Christ goes far beyond the physical. He must be my all, for there is my relief from the burdens of this world, my gentle instruction, my blessed quiet and ease in the midst of noise and pain. I am so thankful for the precious new life growing inside of me, but more thankful still for my precious Savior, through whom we can have life eternal!