I love playing the "week ago today" game or the "last year on this day" game or the "it was five years ago this week" game, which is a trait I believe I inherited from my father. So here we go.
Just last week, I was really enjoying looking like this. I mean it. I really loved being big and beautiful and pregnant. I did not enjoy the physical discomforts, of course, but I really tried to revel in my state, knowing it would be my last time.
Just last week we were deeply focused on these two:
Yes, those are the two fur kids in our graciously huge shower. Why are they in the penalty box? Because they are on elaborate bathing schedules these days. Yup, the pups chose the month before the baby came to have all sorts of issues come to a head. (Auerbachian friends will not be surprised.)
Tilly's seborrhea resurfaced, she developed an "interesting" growth in her private parts, and while under anesthesia to deal with said growth (and to have her teeth cleaned) she revealed to us not one, but two lumps in her mouth which were promptly removed. Thankfully, the lumps and growths all proved to be benign, and after a course of antibiotics and with regular shampoos for her seborrhea, she seems to be doing just fine. Phew.
Meanwhile, Zephie's allergies and/or nerves took over and she developed two crazy hot spot areas. Her benign fatty belly lump (present since 2006) started growing rapidly. Another trip to the vet, another day of anesthesia, and she has emerged with clean teeth, three removed lumps (including the very large one on her belly), and her own shampoo schedule for allergies. She, too, has just finished her course of meds, so we can simply focus on her two incision sites, one of which has a seroma. (This requires a trip to the vet every few days to have the site drained; we're hoping this ends next week.)
And then there's their arthritis.
Oh. Wait. What? Hm? What's that you say? You came here for cute baby pictures and were confronted instead by the phrase "interesting growth in her private parts?"
Okay. I know you aren't THRILLED to be reading about my geriatric dogs' health issues (kind of like a visit to an old folks' home, no?), but they are my girlies, too. They are part of my real life. And they were DEFINITELY part of my last week.
Anyway. Back to that last week. Tilly got in a few last minute snuggles with the belly:
We (the human Gutsies) went out for a "Final Friday as Four" dinner at the Upper Crust:
On Sunday, we went to church as usual. I am glad we went, for many reasons. Most superficially, I was excited to wear one of my favorite maternity dresses one last time. These are pretty much the final belly shots. (By the same time the next day, Bronwen was out!)
A side note about church: September 11th is hard for me for personal reasons. Going to church always helps this. It particularly helped this week that our priest gave an intelligent and honest sermon about forgiving our enemies. I got pretty teary. Forgiveness is something I have a very hard time practicing. I struggle to see how forgiving others for their wrongdoings helps me; it helps the other, certainly, but I seem to be able to move on just fine without it. I've also been thinking about forgiveness quite a bit thanks to Unbroken. But I digress.
By the end of church, we felt wrapped in love (and laden with meals), and we headed home to pack bags for the hospital.
Shortly, Meme and Kiki and their dog, Charlotte, arrived and, as usual, they got right into the swing of things. Mom made us an awesome "Abschiedsfest" dinner of oven-baked "fried" chicken, corn and corn bread from the farmer's market (my requests), and salad to make us feel virtuous. There was also a delicious homemade peach pie. (Heaven!)
At story time, the Gutsy Dad snuggled with three girls. (L to R: Zephie, Tilly, Charlotte.)
While Meme and Kiki were in charge of the stories.
I just watched and basked and rubbed my belly, counting my many, many blessings.