It’s been a while since our last post… a few things happened, you know. Yesterday marks three weeks since the birth of our daughter, Kirby Elizabeth. She was born on Christmas Eve at 3:35 p.m., weighing in at 7 pounds, 6 ounces and measuring 20 inches in length. We are excited to finally be parents!

Three weeks old here (and sound asleep)! Check out that bicycle blanket...

Best Christmas gift ever.


Three weeks old here (and sound asleep)! Check out that bicycle blanket…


Let’s back up a little bit to my last post, which was about all the inappropriate commentary you might get while pregnant. Shortly after that, I stopped posting on here and on social media about my pregnancy. Why? I went a solid 12 days past my due date. As one of my friends said, every day past the due date feels like an additional month of pregnancy. I went to work a week longer than planned. And everywhere I went–church, work, Christmas parties–it seemed all we talked about was my extended state of pregnancy. I finally became weary of all the new advice and commentary I was getting from people… I think this blog (sent to me by a friend) sums it up nicely! This girl compiled a list of “Things not to say to a woman who is 41+ weeks pregnant.” It’s actually hilarious. And spot-on! I wasn’t upset or annoyed with anyone… I was just tired of being pregnant. So I started limiting my communication to Dave and my close family.

On my due date--which, by the way, is a total guess. You should never put too much stock in that tentative date!

On my due date–which, by the way, is a total guess. You should never put too much stock in that tentative date!

All that to say, while I did get VERY tired of being pregnant and going overdue, I am very grateful we decided to wait (per my doctor’s recommendation) the maximum amount of time to the 42-week mark before inducing labor. Because of that, my body had time to go into labor naturally and do what it is designed to do. I am also grateful that even though nearly 42 weeks is a long time to be pregnant, I was blessed with a mostly trouble-free pregnancy. I would have much rather gone overdue than have complications or issues. And we were blessed with a healthy baby! So really, nothing at all to complain about!

I have debated whether I will share the full birth story on here or not. Either way, I’m not doing it today. It’s a bit lengthy, and honestly, I realize the few people out there who really want to hear the whole story will probably actually talk to me about it. So let me give the brief summary… we had a natural childbirth. This was my desire from the start, but I tried to be healthy and balanced in my approach to that throughout my pregnancy. I don’t believe epidurals are bad, and I was open to getting one if I decided I needed it. My labor was difficult and lengthier than I had hoped, but I am very proud of and grateful for our natural childbirth. I can honestly say I couldn’t have done it without my number one encourager, Dave, and my awesome supportive family.  I also had amazing nurses who cheered me on the whole time.

Shortly after she was born. Completely worth it.

Shortly after she was born. Completely worth it.

I can’t say exactly why I wanted a natural childbirth. I can say, now, on the backside, that it was one of the most intense experiences of my life. And yes–that’s coming from someone who has ridden their bicycle back and forth across the second largest mountain chain in the world. That’s coming from someone who has cycled in 100+ degree heat in Thailand. That’s coming from someone who called a tent home for more than two years. Basically, I’m telling you that natural childbirth is truly an intense experience! I’m grateful to have had that experience. As the weeks have gone by since Kirby’s birth, I find myself somehow sad that the intensity of it is fading a little. (I also now have a deeper understanding and appreciation for all the times birth stories come up when there are groups of women gathered.) Everyone has a unique experience, a story to share. And even though it seemed terrible in so many ways, bringing life into this world is one of the richest experiences I have lived through.

We’re (kind of) settling into life with a baby, along with the new normals of changing loads of diapers, waking up for middle-of-the-night feedings, taking afternoon naps (me and the baby)… and let’s not forget about the wonderful morning snuggles, the softness of her baby skin, the sweetness of watching her fall asleep on Dave’s chest. We have so much for which to be thankful!

So, indulge me for a moment and let me be “that mom” and shamelessly share some pictures! (In fact, I might do a whole other post once we get her newborn pictures back from the professional session we had.) Here’s a few of the highlights from the past few weeks. We have been having loads of fun with Kirby! Here’s to the next great Garth adventure…

She loves her daddy!

She loves her daddy!

Aunt Sarah and sweet cousin Emily have come for a few visits.

Aunt Sarah and sweet cousin Emily have come for a few visits.

After a bath--bright-eyed and wide awake!

After a bath–bright-eyed and wide awake!