Last time I posted, I had just found out definitively that the pain behind my bellybutton was from a hernia. At the time I was very concerned that I could go into labor with the pain still there, or that the pain could last 2-3 weeks. Thankfully, the pain was almost entirely gone the Wednesday after. By Friday, I felt 100% and very relieved.
The way I was able to treat it was using a rebozo to bind my belly--providing counterpressure on the sore spot, and a couple of times a day rubbing caster oil on my belly topically and then heating it with a heating pad. The heat provided a great deal of relief. Each treatment was recommended by my midwife and naturopath. And the rebozo was kindly provided by my friend Shawnette, who unintentionally became my doula once again, but this time for the L&D trip relating to the hernia.
A couple of days after I started feeling better, and totally mobile again, Peter had to go out of town. My mother generously decided to come stay with me knowing what the last couple of weeks had been like for me. It was very nice to have her company and her help while Peter was away.
Sadly the day she went home, we found out that Peter's grandfather had passed away. Even though the end of my pregnancy is fast upon us, we felt at peace after prayer for Peter to travel to Pennsylvania to be with his family for the funeral. And my mother is once again coming to stay with me while he's away. I don't think that the baby will be born while he's away, but if I'm wrong then at least my mother will be with me. He will be away from Sunday through Wednesday and I feel based on previous spiritual impressions that he won't miss his baby's birth.
Today I finished the last project I wanted to accomplish before the baby was born: a charm bracelet of my favorite pendants that have significance for me based on aspects of my personality, likes or gifts that loved ones have given me. I typically wear a simple chain with a pendant around my neck and the necklace rotates depending on significant events. For the months after Willem was born I wore a Celtic Claddagh with a garnet (his birthstone). For a period, I wore a pendant of an Irish dance ghillie (the soft shoe used in Irish dance). Since graduation with my M.Ed., I've been wearing the pearl pendant that Peter bought me in Hawaii. The pearl is set surrounded by three maile leaves: a Hawaiian symbol of honor and accomplishment. I've been wanting to somehow represent all of my favorite pendants during the baby's birth and I decided to do that by linking them to a bracelet. I hope to post pictures soon.
One of the other projects was a quilt for the baby. I pieced 6 in fabric squares around a 6 piece panel of white fabric where I embroidered the words "Sleep my child and peace attend thee"--the words from the lullaby "All Through the Night." In high school, my women's choir sang an arrangement of the song and when reflecting on the thought I would like to express on the quilt, it came back to me. Basically, I was attempting to avoid any cliche girl quotes like "sugar and spice and everything nice" or "thank heaven for little girls." The colors of that quilt are deep purples and greens with a purple satin binding which unfortunately doesn't photograph very well. Each time I try to take a picture of it, the purples end up looking blue.
At this point of the pregnancy, I've been pregnant longer than I was with Willem. He was born at 38 weeks exactly. Now I'm approaching the 40 week mark and I'm happy to still be holding my baby. Willem may have different ideas because he has told me a couple of times now "Baby Belle come out mama body today." Each time he has been wrong, and I hope she stays in for at least another 5 days.
All along, I've felt like she's going to be a June baby. We'll see if I'm right or if she sneaks out the last week of May. Somehow it seems fitting that she would be born in June: a different month than her "due date" since Willem was also born in a different month than his. Except she'd be born in the month after, and he was born in the month before.