We has some professional photos taken, and thought to try for a pose that would make for a good pregnancy announcement photo. This is what we got, but I think it sort of looks like I'm shoving poor Annabelle's head into my stomach, so it goes at the bottom of the post instead. The photographer, Larissa Boland, does beautiful work! She just can't be expected to make gal look pregnant is all.

And Then There Were Four

Wednesdays are the day I usually blog about what’s new in our house, but there’s one piece of news I’ve been holding back for a few weeks now. I’ve been struggling with the question of how to tell you all, and in the end I decided I’d just let Annabelle do it, so here she is:

She was a willing, but unenthusiastic model.

Perhaps a bit distracted, too.

She’s going to be a big sister! It’s still early, but I just couldn’t wait to share the news any longer. I had originally thought to wait until I reached twelve weeks, which won’t be until January, but the longer I held off the crazier it made me. I realized that the whole waiting until the second trimester thing just isn’t me. What’s the use in being a blogger if I can’t over share about every detail of my life?

In the first week or two after I learned I was pregnant, I really was incredibly nervous. I was and am thrilled, but at only three weeks and two days, I deeply felt the uncertainty of it all. That faint, faint little line was a promise of wonderful things, but my goodness was it ever faint! We waited to tell most everyone, save for a few special people we see every week. Little by little, however, I have relaxed, and Annabelle has had a lot to do with my ability to let go of the fear. I’ve been listening to a cd of “pregnancy affirmations,” which is part of the Hypnobabies program I used for Annabelle’s birth. It includes such reassuring statements as, “My baby is healthy and safe inside me now.” Annabelle absolutely loves these, and asks for the, “baby song” every time we get in the car.

One day, not long after I had played the cd around her for the first time, I was doing some laundry while Annabelle sat nearby and seemingly out of nowhere she said, “Baby healthy. Baby safe.” Of course intellectually I know she was just repeating something she had heard, but it was just what I needed to hear at the time. Now that she’s fully familiar with the affirmations, it’s commonplace for her to repeat them. I particularly enjoy hearing her say words like pregnancy and hemoglobin. Another favorite is when she says, “New baby, ‘nique self,” because “This is a new birth, and a new baby, unique unto itself.” She is the ultimate stress reliever.

So far, the first trimester seems to be very similar to the same stage of my first pregnancy. For me, this means extreme tiredness to the point that I can’t function for more than about ten or twelve hours out of the day. Every afternoon, I go to put Annabelle down for a nap and end up taking one myself, whether I like it or not. Every evening, I fall asleep right along with her, sometime around seven pm.

This news, then, also answers the question of why I’ve been such a lousy blogger. Remember how I accepted the challenge of posting every day during the month of November as part of NaBlogPoMo, and then managed to post even less than I would have in a normal month? That’s because I was too busy sleeping to blog. I will likely continue to miss regular blogging days here and there for the next little while, and I’m taking longer than I’d like to answer comments and visit all of my favorite blogs, but I hope you’ll bear with me. I’m trying to let go of my own ideas of what I “should” do and give myself permission to rest and relax so that I can fully enjoy this pregnancy, and my last months with just Annabelle on the outside. So far, so good.

Photo credit: Larissa Boland

And so that’s that. What’s new with you?

48 thoughts on “And Then There Were Four

  1. Crystal

    Congratulations to you all! Enjoy your remaining time of giving Annabelle all your focus, and if you didn’t use wrap carriers with her, learn to use them. ;-) That’s how I survived the first few months with two!

    Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Very sage advice, Crystal! I have a few carriers I love: a mei tai and a ring sling, but a simple wrap is on my list this time, too :) Thank you!

      Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Thanks, Charise! I’m thrilled that Annabelle will not only tolerate the affirmations disc, but that she actually enjoys it and interacts with it, too. I bet Baby would enjoy it as well! I hope you’re feeling well!

      Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      You saw right through me, huh? I suppose it really is ‘special’ – to us anyway! Thanks for the sweet words :)

      Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Thank you! I’m looking forward that the famed energy of the second trimester while doing my best to enjoy this one, too :)

      Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Thank you, Brett! If you have any words of wisdom to share with regard to preparing for two, I’ll take them :)

      Reply
  2. Terri

    wowee a million congratulations! I so love it that I’m feeling as if my friend just came to my house and told me this news…funny thing this blogosphere…so far and yet so close too! Enjoy the 2nd pregnancy (if you even remember you are pregnant, because I was so busy with my first child I almost forgot at times!!) onelove xx

    Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Thank you, Terri! I know what you mean – both with the feeling of closeness despite the distance, and with the wonderful distraction of the older child. Exciting times! xo

      Reply
  3. Gaby @ Tmuffin

    Yaaaay! I’m so excited for you! Hearing about Annabelle repeating the affirmations makes me smile so much. That must be awesome to just walk around the house with a little angel saying these wonderful things to you! I remember being so much more tired during my second pregnancy, too. Take advantage of all the naps you can get! They will be few and far between in about 7 months :)

    Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Thanks for the nap encouragement, Gaby :) It really does seem to be taking more out of me this time than the last, but having such a positive little person underfoot certainly makes it all feel worth it!

      Reply
  4. Anna

    That is lovely news. Congratulations. I am trying to work out what your age gap will be – around two years? There’s no right or wrong on that one. The second baby will be entirely itself and different from Annabelle and that in itself is exciting. I was tempted to have more than my three just because it is so exciting to see the different combinations that two sets of genes can come up with. Not really a good reason for having more!!

    Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Thank you, Anna! There will be almost 2 1/2 years between the two of them – 29 months, give or take :)

      It really is interesting to see how very different siblings can be. I’m sure your three amaze you every day!

      Reply
  5. Rach

    Congratulations! Oh that is so fantastic, and such a sweet way to tell us all. A will be a fantastic sister, and even birth partner from the sounds of it ha ha.
    Yes, I did guess I realise from what you’ve been saying, so I’m not so surprised, but I feel excited like I knew you in RL.

    Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Thank you, Rach! I love the sharing of excitement despite being so far removed geographically. I feel incredibly blessed!

      I hadn’t thought about it until now, but Annabelle really would make a great doula. I’ll have to see if I can negotiate an affordable rate with her ;)

      Reply
  6. Cathy Woodhouse

    Oh that’s so wonderful, Melissa! My excitement over this just took me by surprise, I feel like one of my close friends has just told me she’s pregnant and I’m getting all emotional about it :)

    What a blessing Annabelle is. She’ll be so well prepared when the baby arrives. How amazing that she is already absorbing the concept of her little brother/sister being a ‘nique self’! Precious.

    Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Thank you, Cathy! I feel a similar excitement when you write about Finlay’s conquests – it’s amazing how well-acquainted I can feel with people despite never having met in person. Thank you for sharing my joy!

      Reply
  7. Niki

    Yay! I am so excited for you guys! I love that you are only 8 weeks behind me. When you move back to Texas some day (hint, hint) our children will all be so close in age! Love you!

    Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Thanks, Niki! I love you, too, and am thrilled to be on this journey together yet again. I love that our four will share so much in common, and really would love to see us all near one another one day soon. Oh, how lovely it would to be back in Austin!

      Reply
  8. Melissa V

    Congrats, lovely! Your photo is beautiful, and i’m soooo excited for you! It will be fun to read about your journey as you go! I, too, can never wait the twelve weeks to tell everyone. I’m glad you didn’t keep it a secret for long! =)

    Reply
  9. MJ

    Woohooo!!!! Congratulations Melissa!! How exciting! Good for you for letting go and just enjoying where you are!! Looking forward to watching this new part of your lives blossom!!!
    xo

    Reply
  10. tinsenpup

    Aaaaagggggghhhhhh! That’s wonderful news. I have to admit, I was hoping after your hint about news on Wednesday, but you never know, you might have been adopting a kitten. :) How lovely that Annabelle is repeating your affirmations for you. It must sound so cute. Love to you and your beautiful healthy baby as well as the big sis and the daddy. I’m so happy for you all!

    Reply
  11. MrsWJAA

    Congratulations!
    Perhaps you could record Annabelle saying the affirmations over a period of time, then edit the recordings so that you get all the affirmations without the extra. Then, even if she can’t/doesn’t want to be at the birth, you can have her sweet voice there to help you along.
    Many blessings to you and yours:)

    Reply
  12. Nichole

    Congrats! That’s wonderful news! It is so sweet that she repeats those affirmations! I love it! She’s going to be such a great big sister! :)

    Reply
  13. Jess

    Oh how wonderful for you and your fam Melissa. There is no greater gift you could give Annabelle than a sibling. Your joy will grow tenfold as you see their love for each other grow! Wishing your family much love and blessings!! Hooray for new babes!

    Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Thank you, Jess! The sibling relationship is definitely a special one, or at least was in my case, and I really look forward to watching Annabelle’s unfold!

      Reply
  14. Crystal - Prenatal Coach

    Congratulations on your pregnancy!! We are pregnant with our 1st (due in June!) and are doing Hypnobabies for our birth too. I’m an instructor and hypno-doula and have witnessed so many beautiful Hypnobabies births as well as heard such great stories from my students. We’re really excited to finally be able to experience it ourselves!! Will you be doing Hypnobabies again? I’ll also be blogging through my pregnancy and about our experience of going through the program :-)

    Reply
    1. melissa Post author

      Oh, Crystal, I didn’t realize you were pregnant – congratulations! How very wonderful! I must have some catching up to do on your blog.

      I am definitely planning to use Hypnobabies again, and am enjoying the calm that the affirmations are bringing me now. We don’t know where we’ll be living during my third trimester, or where this baby will be born, so there’s a chance I may actually be someplace where a live class is an option, which would be amazing! The home study course was fantastic, but to learn from others live and in person would be such a treat. I look forward to catching up with you and following along with you on your journey :)

      xo

      Reply

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