The Last Five Weeks

The last week of the eighth month, the last five weeks, one week before nine months, the closing of the third trimester…

The ending of my first pregnancy is coming…opening the door to motherhood.

I remember the beautiful sunshine on the morning in May, 2016. The sunshine was outside painting the city a golden hue. The sunshine was seen across my face and my husband’s face and dancing its warmth within our hearts and bodies as we had just found out that we were going to have a baby!! We created a human together! Wow, what a feeling that was.

The test was positive as I watched each pink line darken across the screen and after taking a moment to embrace and capture a few photos together, Zouhair and I walked the beach as the sun rose up above the mountains.

 Feeling the indescribable high from the news was a perfect pairing with the sand beneath my feet, the chilled morning wind, the warm rising sun, and the glistening movement of the Mediterranean sea to my side all of which was tied together with interlaced fingers with the father of my son.

Our pregnancy experience is something I am more than grateful for.

I called my mom the evening of the day we found out and she already couldn’t wait to begin her role as grandma. On Halloween she bought a shirt that read, “I am the grandMUMMY.” My mom is adorable.

We found out that our little “peena peena” (our unique nickname for him derived from the common title “peanut” for a growing baby) was doing great. At around 5-9 weeks I was very nauseous and sleepy (nap after waking up, nap after forcing myself to eat a meal, a nap before bed…. naps all the time) and I couldn’t eat anything with tomatoes, onions, garlic, meat, or anything that was fragrant in any way.

 All I wanted to eat was cheese and crackers, Subway sandwiches, meatless chicken noodle soup, and sour candy. Alas, as I was in Morocco and didn’t have access to all of these things, it seemed the only thing that would keep the nausea away was a combination of naps and Oreos (in moderation of course…. just the Oreos, not the napping).

I was lucky to not have a job to have to be at daily. I think this helped me to keep from having any vomiting from morning sickness. All the kudos to the women that don’t have the choice at all and must go to work regardless of morning sickness or not. You are strong women and I think that experience, no matter how temporary or long-standing it was, is something to be proud of accomplishing. I’m proud of you.

The first trimester was new and the hormones pulsing throughout me was an adjustment, but luckily I never had morning sickness or lasting nausea that debilitated me after about 9 weeks. Thank goodness. I was lucky enough to be distracted from sleepiness and nausea by feeling tiny little movements from the little one at around 11 weeks. It was easy for me to know that it was the first few stretches and exercises of my baby and I was so happy to feel him…this new life within me gaining strength; incredible and astoundingly heartwarming.

At around 17 weeks we found out that peena peena is a baby boy! I had a feeling that he was a boy and we were thrilled. Now, time to tell everyone and allow the impatience for the buying of the blue things to commence, which definitely happened from my family in America and Zouhair’s family here in Morocco. Peena peena is loved very much by many already. It’s beautiful. Family is beautiful.

The second trimester was great. I didn’t really feel pregnant at times. There was a few times throughout the second trimester where all I wanted was a Doppler to hear his heart beating, but I would usually feel or even SEE a kick or two and feel at ease, even if I had to wait a day or two and freak out.

Looking back I wish that I would have done more traveling and filming of Tetouan and other cities in Morocco during the second trimester, but it was the middle of the summer and air conditioning in Morocco is not commonly found. Our apartment didn’t have it and we were on the third floor, which was baked by the sun from sunrise to sunset.The “breeze” during the summer was like hitting yourself with the heat from an open oven cooking a Thanksgiving turkey or like the blowing of 500 hair dryers across your sweaty skin.

Activity was not sounding nice then, but now during the third trimester in the middle of December as I watch my breath turn to steam from inside our apartment, the summer seems like it wasn’t that bad and was filled with missed opportunities. Hindsight is always sweet, but overall Zouhair and I did take on opportunities to visit the beach on the hottest of days to get some relief and have some fun outside of our oven house. I enjoyed those days and I think peena peena did, too.

Today, before I went to bed, ya know…12:30am I checked my Ovia pregnancy app and saw that the three of us have reached 35 weeks!

 Peena peena, is about 5-6 pounds and 18 inches long from head to baby toes. He could survive if he were to be born now. How incredible?! He still needs some more time with mama, though. I’m not ready to give him up yet and his little lungs need to keep exercising and his cheeks need to be as chunky and cute with more fat as possible.

Every morning, the first thing I think when I open my eyes is, “How are you baby? Good morning.” I will feel my big belly, my extremely sore hips and back, and feel a big or little wiggle from the little fella inside my belly and we can continue our day together as we have for the past 35 weeks.

He’s my buddy, my friend, and I love that he’s always with me and that I can provide him with what he needs to grow into what he has already and what he will be.

This isn’t the first time a mother has made a blog about these same experiences and it isn’t the first pregnancy in the world, but it feels like it to me.

I have never felt a tiny foot in my ribs before. I’ve definitely never had two hearts in my body at once and never has this second heart been a part of me and also a part of my spouse simultaneously.

This pregnancy is one-of-a-kind and I feel proud. I understand why my dad felt he had to go to his job at Kroger and tell everyone over the loud speaker that I was born and that he was a new father. You want to tell the whole world that you have just brought a new life into the world, a life that will carry a piece of you for the rest of their life.

In the closing of this pregnancy and this blog post, I will take the opportunity to feel all the gratitude flowing through my body and share it with you. I’m happy you’re here reading this post and I’m happy your parents and my parents decided to have us all. Whether or not you want children in your life is up to you and you alone. Maybe a dog, or a cat is more your style. Any decision is an opportunity, right? Enjoy your whole life to the fullest…the laughs, the smiles, and every single one of your decisions, whether it seems right or wrong, it will get you where you need to go and we will do the same and pray that our peena peena will also.

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