It has been quite a while since I posted. The last post was in December when we were still trying to figure out where I would be delivering sweet bambino #10. I was struggling a lot with my desire to have another home birth, which we decided against purely for financial reasons. Then we were hoping to get coverage for a birth center birth. Sadly, the birth center wanted to charge us $1200 more in out-of-pocket charges that would not count towards our out-of-pocket maximum, so we would have had to pay an extra $1200 for the birth beyond our maximum, which we will most definitely be reaching this year. Todd felt that with all the expenses we have this year building a large addition to our home, that we should have the baby at the hospital. At first I was very disappointed, but it didn't take long for me to find peace in our decision. God will bless no matter where we choose to deliver our baby. Also, I really do love my OB, and I've had 7 hospital births, with 3 of those being natural deliveries. My fourth birth was probably my second best, peaceful birth aside from the water delivery we were blessed to have with Jedidiah, baby #8 and our first home birth. The LORD holds us in the palm of His hand.
After we decided on the hospital delivery, I began searching for a birth doula who would be able to help me with the delivery at the hospital. As I began my search, I was discouraged, because some of the charges were almost as much as the birth center delivery would have cost us out of pocket. That would not have been feasible for us. I posted a request to my Facebook friends, to see if anyone knew of a doula who charged a lower fee, and I received a message from a sweet friend of mine I had met several years ago through our homeschool field trip group. We had recently reconnected on Facebook. She told me she is a trained doula, and her fee was completely within my budget! I had just been praying that morning that the LORD would bring just the perfect doula at a price I could afford. When I received the message, I cried tears of joy! What a blessing! I know that it wasn't anything I couldn't live without, but the Lord was showing me His graciousness, and in my mind confirming our decision to deliver our baby at the hospital. I am so excited! I know the Lord's hand is in this pregnancy, and He will be with us every step of the way. I am at peace!
So, now we have 6 weeks to go til baby's due date! Up until very recently, I have been pretty worn out in the evenings, the time when I would normally be cleaning stuff out and nesting. I was beginning to think that the nesting instinct would never kick in. Just a few days ago, I came across another idea for Lent. It's called 40 bags in 40 days. You take 40 days, and every day you clean an area of your home and try to have at least one bag of trash or one larger item to take out of your house to give away or throw away. I started a day early because that will take me right up to my due date. So far, I have cleaned out the linen closet downstairs (2 bags of trash and stuff to give away), tiny pantry (2 more bags of stuff to throw out), and some toy shelves we have in our family room (1 bag of trash and 1 plastic drawers set filled with stuff to give away). I'm so excited about this because it fits in with the Fly Lady mentality of just taking baby steps to reach the goal of decluttering your home. So far, doing a little area every day with the goal of just 1 bag of stuff to get rid of has seemed very doable. Now I feel like the nesting instinct is taking hold, and I am on a roll!
Here are a few pictures of my progress so far in these little areas:
Day 1: Downstairs Linen Closet: Before
Day 2: Tiny Pantry Before
Day 3: Toys Shelves Before
Feeling a sense of accomplishment! More to come!