Monday, February 15, 2016

Judah's Name and Thinking of #2

The name Judah didn't come as an a-ha moment and we didn't finalize it on a certain day, it just kinda happened over time.
In my pregnancy devotional, I stuck a sticky note that Jordan brought home from work one day back in the fall. He had written some name suggestions that had popped into his mind, and "Judah" was on that list. We had already discussed how we like Biblical place names, especially because Jordan is one, but I hadn't thought of Judah as an option yet.
When thinking about a name, there were three categories we were trying to choose from. We could have used a family name, a Biblical name, or a name we just simply liked for no particular reason. 
We decided to go with a family name for the middle name which was an easy decision. William is Jordan's middle name and is the first name of both of his grandfathers. William was probably number one on the list of family names contending for the first name, but ultimately we chose to use it in the middle. Here is a picture of William Harvey Shelley, Jordan William Shelley, and Judah William Shelley. 

As Jordan would tell you, I over-analyzed every name suggestion. I was very picky about how I wanted it to sound. For instance, there were several names we liked that ended in "s" or "sh" but I didn't love how they flowed into "Shelley". One example is the name Silas, which I really like but that would make for all kinds of ssss-ing when saying the full name. Others may love that but it seemed difficult for me to say.
I also wanted it to be easy to say and spell, and not have terrible nickname potential (though you can't really prevent that, hence the nickname Trashley). We liked the nickname Jude, so that was another plus.

We loved how Judah got his name in the Bible. After much frustration, Leah chose the name Judah and said "this time I will praise the Lord". (Gen. 29:35) Judah means "praise" and we LOVE that. His grandparents quickly made up a song about it after he was born and now that's the song that makes him light up or cheers him up. Our prayer is that his life will be one of praise to the Lord. 

Judah was a complex person in the Bible -- he did some great things, and he did some terrible things. Ultimately even though he made some huge mistakes, God used him in great ways and he was even in the line of Jesus. I pray that Judah will know that God doesn't use people based on performance, but gives unlimited grace.

Since there were so many reasons we loved the name Judah, it's hard for us to think about a name for this new baby. We just worked hard to decide and now we have to decide again! Haha. It may take a while. We lean toward Biblical names in what we like, so we'll see if that's what we go with. I was pretty set on a girl name, but not a boy name. That's how it goes I guess. :) I had a dream the other night that I had the baby early and we had to pick a name, and I was still uncertain in the dream. We will continue to pray about what we should name this little guy and that God will make it clear.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Labor and Delivery Tips for Myself

I put "to myself" in the title because that's the main reason I wanted to write this. Some things that were helpful to me last time are still pretty fresh in my mind and I want to remember them in May/June when it comes time to deliver baby #2!

EVERY pregnancy/labor/birth is different so this isn't a know-it-all list of precisely what will help. Just simply a list of what helped me last time. I've already been having some fears about the next go around and one of the main ones is that it could be completely different from my last experience and I'll freak out. Which it very well could be, but I can't think like that. It's a new challenge, a new opportunity to trust the Lord. Our Bible study leader said that months ago about something he was facing and it's something that's stuck with me ever since. When challenges arise they are opportunities to trust God in a new way.

With that being said, here is a list of what helped me when birthing my first child. Or things that I want to do differently this time. I cannot emphasize enough that these statements are directed toward myself. :)

  • Take every opportunity in the labor process to sleep. Yes, it is exciting that you are in labor. But when you are on your 30th hour of hard labor you will need every minute of rest that you were able to fit in. 
  • Eat nourishing food to fuel yourself up. 
  • You have a lot of adrenaline going, but keep the environment calm. Turn on the Coldplay and light those candles.
  • Take it one contraction at a time. Don't think big picture and get overwhelmed. God will give you the grace and the strength to get through the next contraction, and that's one more closer to being done.
  • Don't fight the contractions. Let your body do what it needs to do. Your muscles are pushing the baby down and out. It's amazing, really. Let them do their job. Breathe through them and don't tense up. Keep your face relaxed and your voice tone low.
  • Find what works for you. Walking, swaying, tub, shower, exercise ball, birthing stool. laying down, whatever. Counter pressure or none. Encouraging words or silence. Just do what works.
  • When you throw up, that's a good sign. Things are happening.
  • When it feels like it's the worst and you can't go any longer, you CAN. And this is potentially the turning point. You're near the finish line.
  • Talk to the Lord, He is a very present help in time of need.
  • You will know what the urge to push is when it comes.
  • Listen to your body and your midwives. 
  • When you can finally push, push with all your might when your midwife says so. Don't forget to breathe. Don't fear the pushing. The baby exit always sounds the worst, but you may not even remember it.
  • Cherish your time with that new baby on your chest. It's surreal, but try to let it soak in.
  • Let your husband take some pictures, your hands are shaking too much to do the picture taking!
  • Don't be afraid of getting an IV of fluids, a shot, stitches, or anything like that. It's all in your head. You just pushed out a baby, you can handle these little things! Just look at your husband and talk to him. Look at your baby and focus on that.
  • Take it easy on your body. The nurse is there to help you. Don't worry about getting blood anywhere, this isn't a hotel. They expect a mess!
  • Accept all offers of food and help from your excited family. It is not a burden on them at all and they are loving it (even with no sleep). Don't worry about being a hostess.
  • Take some time with your husband to reflect on what you just did. It's a lot to process and you  need some alone time with him.
  • Eat, eat, eat! It will help you recover and breastfeed!


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