We are so happy to introduce Valentina to you!
She was born 2.5 weeks ago, but even with lots of great help I haven’t had the chance (or even remembered) to come here and let you know!
Here’s my birth story.
And here are some photos of both Valentina and the whole family, all taken by the lovely Rachel Pearlman.
We are so happy.
The two big kids are adjusting really well, and aside from a few expected discipline issues they have been so good. They LOVE their baby sister, maybe a little too much. They both hug her and kiss her and squeeze her cheeks all the time, and they bring things to show her. Raffi was so excited she “watched” him at soccer camp, and Ali loves sing-screaming her favorite songs to her.
PS- For those who have been holding their breath, she was born with blue eyes! I hope they stay. We only have to wait a year to find out…
I have hardly written anything about being pregnant this time around. Not only am I distracted by life with two other children, but I just don’t feel like making the time to say much.
There are a few things I’d like to remember though. As I hit the home stretch of 35 weeks pregnant which is 35 days to my due date, I’d like to reflect a little.
ACHES & PAINS
This pregnancy has been a lot harder on my body than the other times. I’ve cried a lot more and I’ve felt a lot more aches and pains. There have been times where a short car ride was really painful, and where I felt like I could hardly walk. I already don’t remember the first trimester nausea or anything from the second trimester. I do know, though, that two weeks ago I sat in my OB’s office and cried about how I felt.
I couldn’t even manage the 10 minute walk to the playground with my kids because my legs and back hurt so much.
On that day two weeks ok when I embarrassingly started crying in my OB’s office, her gave me a strict “prescription” of sorts to follow. Here’s what it is:
- Take a bath nightly.
I’ve been doing this religiously for 15 nights now, even when I’m tired or have other things to do. It feels so indulgent and relaxing and the jets feel so nice after a day of action.
- Wear a maternity support belt.
I bought a cheap Curad one for $15. I don’t notice a difference when I’m wearing it, but the minute I take it off I immediately feel back pain. It really works and it’s amazing how much support a simple belt can provide.
- No more nightly vacuuming/mopping etc.
We hired a cleaning company to come temporarily every few weeks until I’m back to my normal self. I didn’t realize what an impact vacuuming the stairs or cleaning the tub had on my pain levels, but the minute I removed them from my life I noticed a difference.
- Do the stairs less.
Instead of running up and down the stairs a million times all day, I consolidate trips or leave things for Trig to lug for me. He has been so great about helping out more than usual without complaint. Every morning when I go downstairs with the kids I find the dishwasher already emptied for me, and he has brought multiple loads of junk up and down the stairs for me. I’m also using Instacart, which is a really amazing grocery delivery service that delivers my groceries from Whole Foods 2 hours after I place my order.
After two weeks of following this “prescription”, I feel like a new person. I still have the same pains but they aren’t debilitating. Now, instead of stopping me from doing normal activities, they simply feel like a nuisance. I haven’t cried in 2 weeks, and overall I feel like myself again, despite not being able to do as much as usual. It feels great.
BROTHER AND SISTER
Now to talk about way more fun stuff…
Raffi and Alessandra are really excited for the new baby.
They take care of pretend babies all the time, and Raffi checks his countdown calendar multiple times a day to discuss how much longer he has to wait before he can meet her.
He told me that he is going to kiss and hug her all the time and that when she cries he will bring her a book to read. He is excited about the piggy bank he and Alessandra are making for her, and he said the baby might give them something too. He knows Trig and I will be at the hospital for a couple of days and he will get to visit us and meet the baby, and he said that he and Alessandra are going to sing her a song when they meet her.
Alessandra is really excited too, but at 2 years old she understands less. Most of the time she just wants to touch my belly to feel the baby kick, and she hugs and kisses my belly all the time. She never wants to be left out of the action, so when Raffi is feeling my belly for kicks she immediately runs over and yells “AND ME!! I WANNA FEEL IT!!!” It’s so super cute.
Before Ali was born I felt sad about having to split my attention between Raffi and a sibling. This time around I’m nothing but excited. I know they will love the baby and I love how excited they are. I also know that Trig and I will have enough love for all 3, despite not having enough hands for all of them at once ha. And they have each other! Since they started sharing a room they’ve become really close.
35 DAYS LEFT
I have a very detailed and specific calendar of things to do in the next 35 days. Trig and I are going on a Phillies game date night with another couple. I’ve scheduled a specific day to set up all the baby crap (bassinet, swing, etc). I’ve booked a hair appointment close to delivery so I can finally cover my gray hair. My mother in law booked a day to make cheese boreg for the freezer together with the kids. And the kids and I (and Trig on the weekends) have a bunch of fun things planned to do as a family of 4, including the first Night Market of the season.
I can’t picture what this little one will look like. Raffi and Ali look like siblings, but they each favor a different side of the family. Will baby flower/B-I-N-G-O look like a mix? Will she have blue eyes or will I have another brown eyed one? We have a 50% chance of a blue eyed babe, and my husband knows I married him for his ocean blue eyes. Only time will tell!
I can’t wait.