Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Growing AND Slowing

Well it's official. I've slowed down. I was going so strong for awhile there and I think I've crashed. I had this problem where if I sat down to relax I'd either be super fidgety or just want to sleep--no matter the time of day. So I fought it by not relaxing! Now I have decided it's time to take things a little more slowly and just relax a little. I'm sure Greta appreciates it as well.
Sorry there's no photo to accompany this, but my increased size is surely to blame for this slow down. I can't believe I still have 4 more months to get bigger!!! Pregnancy is crazy.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Baby Showers

Just a quick note for all you family and friends who have calendars that quickly fill up---we will have a friends baby shower on either the Saturday of Valentine's weekend or the Saturday following, and we will have a family baby shower one of those same weekends on a Sunday. Once Matthew has his next term of classes scheduled we will settle on one of those weekends. It will most likely be Valentine's weekend, though--in the Seattle area. Mark your calendars because we'd love to see you all!!
Also, about 6 weeks after Greta has officially arrived in this world we will have another shower for girlfriends to meet her at my mom's in Olympia.
Can't wait!

Friday, November 14, 2008

It's a Girl! Part II

Matthew and I both thought it was a boy for some reason.....but we are overjoyed to know that we are having a daughter! Greta Bess Bradsher is on her way.

For several weeks we looked forward to this ultrasound, a routine procedure for all mothers-to-be at around 20 weeks of pregnancy. We couldn't wait to see the baby, make sure it was developing properly, and find out if it was a daughter or a son. When we arrived at the ultrasound place, though, we were told we wouldn't find out the sex of the baby! Due to BC abortion laws, technicians and doctors are not allowed to tell parents the sex of their baby until after 24 weeks of pregnancy. I was so disappointed!! The technician said that sometimes the baby makes his or her sex really obvious, though--and in that case there's no way around the parents knowing what it is. However, I would NOT have known by the looks of things that it was a girl...all of the sudden the technician just told us--despite what she'd said earlier!! She said "It's a little girl!" and I said "Matthew did you hear that?!" and looked over at him and he just looked dumbfounded and so happy and nodded and said with a laugh "Mmmm Hmmm"---I must say I did shed a little tear of joy :-) I would've been happy either way, of course, but KNOWING is so huge! In general the technician said the baby looked healthy and beautiful--all her organs and her spine were great, and she is in a great position. I am a little worried, though, because she's already 1 pound 6 ounces--at 20 weeks! My book says by 21 weeks baby is supposed to be 12 ounces....yikes!!! We've got a good and healthy one in there.

It's even more fun to talk to baby and about baby now--she's even more of a real person to us now that we know she's our little Greta. We can't wait to see her again in a little less than 20 weeks!

Monday, November 10, 2008

It is a Girl.

We had our first full ultra-sound scan this morning. I will write a more in depth entry later, but for now, know that our baby is a girl, seems healthy and normal, and is now due on March 28th.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


I (Matthew) felt baby kick for the first time this morning!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Growing, but not slowing.

Here is a picture I took last night of Megan. We thought it may be fun for you all to see how she has grown since the last time you saw her.

She went for a run on Saturday, and when she returned she told me that she felt like she could have kept going, she said she felt like her old self. So I think that she is doing really well. While she hasn't been running quite as much as she usually does, she often walks to or from work- that is about an hour long walk. She has been doing a water aerobics class on Thursday nights while I am in class, and she frequently does her 'body-building' exercises around the home: she does dips, and strange leg exercises (that are always interesting to watch), and generally continues to out-pace me in nearly everything. So, Megan is growing, but she is not slowing. I think that is a good indication that she and baby are healthy and happy.

Megan tells me that the books say that babies like when mom goes running/walking as it tends to rock them to sleep. Exercise also tends to make delivery a bit easier on mom and baby, and usually considerably faster. Let's hope!

We are very excited to have our first full ultra-sound scan in one week. This should tell us a lot about the baby, its health, its sex, and give us a cool picture to post on this blog. Be sure and visit our blog next Monday night, to see the picture and find out what we have learned.

We both enjoyed dinner with friends on Saturday; Nathan and Marisa have a three month old baby boy named Daniel. I had a lot of fun holding Daniel for extended periods of time while he drooled and stared at various things around the room, and I dreamed of April and holding our baby. I am beginning to feel the impatience that I have heard some of my male friends who have recently had children speak of. Its tough to have to wait to hold baby, know baby, take care of baby- especially since Megan is already experiencing those things. I can't wait until I get a turn!

I leave you all now with one more picture of Megan's baby bump, this picture was taken a week ago...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


Now that I'm well into my second trimester I'm tolerating--maybe even enjoying--showers again. One of the sensitivities I had for the first several weeks of being pregnant was soap, lotion and perfume smells. They made me nauseous like nothing else!! Before becoming pregnant I bought a large Aveda shampoo and conditioner set...I can't bear to use the stuff anymore. In fact, I wanted to just throw it out! But Matthew likes it, unfortunately, so--even now--when he gets out of the shower I need to steer clear. The negative association I developed from that time frame has stayed with me--and even though I'm not quite so sensative anymore I had to buy new shower products. Alas. But I do finally almost enjoy showers again--as long as no Aveda bottles are opened!

One aspect of pregnancy that I fully enjoy, on the other hand, is the different kind of showering I get to experience. I consistently get showered with care and concern and gifts! I have been overwhelmed--mostly in a good way--with the attention of pregnancy :-) As some of you may know, I often don't do well with a lot of attention...but I'm trying to get used to this and just soak it up! It's such a special time I've got to enjoy every minute of it (maybe minus the trials and tribulations of the first trimester...) Recently on a trip to Arizona we were given a surprise baby shower by some very thoughtful family members. Bringing a new life into the world brings out such wonder, affection, and generosity in people! Our baby will certainly feel so loved when it finally arrives. Thank you all for your care and concern--and gifts!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Lately I have been thinking about birth a lot. It scares me. I am not the one that has to do the seemingly impossible feat of birthing our child, but it still scares me. I know that this happens literally all the time, but it just seems so unusual to our life. Will everything happen as we hope? Will we be able to withstand the pains and discomforts? How long will it take? What is the order of events? Will there be time to appreciate what is happening, or will there even be energy to care very much at the time? Will everyone be safe? Will I faint? Do they offer pain medicine for fathers?

Perhaps the only thing that is on my mind more than birth is the reality of what comes after birth. Fatherhood is at least as scary as birth. For one thing, I will have a central role to play in the parenting, whereas during the birth I will only have a supplementary role (at least that is my idea about birth, but I have never done that before...) What if I mess up? Will I be able to balance working to earn money (and more immediately, a degree) with spending time with our child? (Will I even be able to earn money or a degree for that matter?) Will I be able to discipline our child, or will I be a spineless parent? How do I get a passport for our baby so that our family can see, visit, and know our baby? What will I do when the child begins to question everything that I am, say, do, and ask? What should I try to teach this child?

As all of this swims around in my overloaded head, I am struck by a deep sea change that I have noticed taking place in me for several weeks now. I am feeling unusually responsible lately. I do not know where all this felt responsibility is coming from. I have had responsibilities for years now, but most of these have made little or no impact on me by themselves. Perhaps in their totality, they have slowly eroded some of my natural revulsion to responsibility.

Still, until very recently, I have viewed my various responsibilities as something like unattractive second-hand furniture in my life. I never really asked for any of it specifically, but, recognizing some kind of deeper necessity, I have made due with this stuff in my life. All the while I have secretly (it probably isn't as hard to discern as I might imagine) dreamed of a day when, weightless and free, I would never need furniture again. And if I should fail to make it to that zero gravity point, at least I could manage to purchase new furniture that I actually like. I have always felt that if I couldn't eventually escape responsibility altogether, I could at least try to arrange my life so that I at least liked the responsibilities I had.

Now it seems that I am faced with something completely new. I can't say that my attitude towards all of my various responsibilities has completely changed, but something has changed. There is a new responsibility that I love. (In fact, all of that I have written so far may give the impression that I am seeing our baby as a responsibility, but that doesn't seem quite true to me.)

I think that what I am experiencing is the realization that I am going to share my life with someone that is initially completely irresponsible. I feel like I am preparing my little space for a house guest. No matter where this old couch came from, its the only one here for guests to sit on, so I better straighten out the cushions. This might not be my first choice of tables, but if the guest is hungry, they will have to sit at it, so I want it to be clean.

The arrival of baby has rather changed the way I think about the things I have to do. I kind of feel like I am undergoing a conversion experience of sorts. I know that in Christian thinking it is common to imagine "conversion" as a singular experience that happens once and changes everything to follow. But I have to question this understanding. I find in my own experience that, more than any singular defining "conversion," I have undergone a series of transforming processes.

Jesus uses the image of being born as an analogy for this transformation (John 3). It is true that in one sense, a person is born once and that is a singular experience. However, lately I have been noticing that being born is a long process. In fact, in our language, the word 'born' actually alludes to this long process of physically 'bearing' the child in anticipation of the time when the child is born. And the bearing does not stop then. I was born about 27 years ago but I am pretty sure that that was not the last time my parents bore me or my burdens. Even if we are cautious to take Jesus' words exactly as they are recorded in John (the Greek word used for 'born' does not carry the same double meaning as far as I know), the implication is still of a transformation over time.

One is born over a nine month period. And after all that time of gradual process after gradual process, comes a period of great pain and finally, a new person. The product is someone who is utterly confused, completely irresponsible, entirely dependent on the hospitality of their parents, and just getting started.

Now I have the chance to offer hospitality to one of these. I may still be confused, and I may still struggle with being irresponsibe, but I am beginning to understand something of my dependence on my Father. Pray that we would welcome this baby into a home that is clean enough, orderly to a point, but most of all conscious of God's good hospitality.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Taking Care

I am getting bigger--we'll get another photo on here soon (you have to understand we do not have internet access at home so we're a little slower you might want!) But trust me--I'm getting bigger. My closet is continuing to provide me with fewer and fewer options, and I can't wait to get some maternity clothes!
It's hard to remember to take extra care with so many things now that I'm pregnant. I have to get up more slowly, or else sometimes I get this terrible pain in my left side that's either caused by my intestines having less space to move that gas around or by my ovaries getting squished around. Don't worry, the doctor said it was normal--it seems many things that are usually NOT NORMAL are normal when pregnant. I do so much getting up and down at my work--and bending over to pick things up--this is going to get increasingly more cumbersome I am sure. And to think it's tough at this point! Also, I decided I need to take my socks off at work from now on. They have hardwood floors all around the house and yesterday I slipped and fell down a couple of the stairs! Yikes! That was startling and scary for me--but I landed on my ample side-rump area which cushioned much of the fall. However today I am quite sore. Oh--and it's hard to take care not to drink a beer! Despite what some books have said about pregnant women naturally NOT wanting alcohol--I want beer!
But enough complaining. That's something else I have to "take care" about. Especially when I think of bringing another person into this world! To pay attention to the great things--and not dwell so much on hindrances. I am enjoying being pregnant more and more every day. I have a little friend with me at all times :-) Matthew and I like to talk to the little baby--the little baby needs to get used to Matthew's teasing already so when it comes out it knows what to expect!

More to come and more pictures too--
To all of you reading this: We miss you!!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I'm Pretty Sure It's Not Just Gas

(It's Gus...or Greta...)
Sorry for the delay in staying on top of this blog thing. Matthew is actually insanely busy so I decided to take matters into my own hands.
On getting bigger....
Well now I've gotten to the point where I can't comfortably wear my jeans anymore without undoing the top button. I'm pretty much into wearing stretchy things--I'm thankful that leggings are in style at the moment! My mom has graciously offered to take me maternity clothes shopping in late October and I'm really looking forward to that. It's a bit weird gaining 7 pounds in 3 months (I just discovered that yesterday) and not actually looking "pregnant" but just like I've been eating way too much!!
On having a baby INSIDE my body...
Yes I know this is how we all got here and all that but I must say this is INCREDIBLY WEIRD!!! Now that I've passed the stage of feeling absolutely exhausted, rather nauseous, and wanting Thai food all the time (well maybe I'm not past that stage...I did request it last night as well...) I'm getting into it a bit more. Seeing the little thing inside me a couple weeks ago was so amazing! I wish we could've taken that ultrasound machine home with us! And we've now heard the heartbeat on three separate occasions. The little baby is quite a mover and shaker already--during the ultrasound we saw it kind of kick and jump around, and when we heard the heartbeat at two other times the doctor said "Oh--that's a kick!" When it comes time for me to actually feel those kicks I have a feeling I'm in for a lot of entertainment :-) (and discomfort?)
On having a spouse who's slowly but surely becoming a dad...
Matthew has been great! He's had to endure lots of moodiness and particular requests--and he's perservered. Yesterday at the doctor appointment he got to use the tool to hear the heartbeat! I guess he'll get to do that every time, which is so fun. Oh--and he took the initiative for us to purchase our first "baby thing": a cute little bib. He couldn't leave the store without it.
On going to the doctor more than usual...
This is ok. In fact--I think it's going to be really good. I'm in this pregnancy centering group at the hospital where a group of 6-8 women due around the same time as me meet with the doctor and nurse once a month all together. We do the routine tests on our own with our partners (urine test, weight, blood pressure and listening to the baby's heart) and then begin a session on some topic related to pregnancy. We will all get to know each other pretty well and not feel so strange and weird throughout this endeavor. Matthew and I went to our first meeting like this yesterday and it was so refreshing!!
Well that's all about Baby Bradsher for now. Stay tuned.

Monday, September 8, 2008


Being pregnant, or having a pregnant spouse, involves a lot of first time experiences. Two that I will mention here are recieving your first baby gift, and seeing an image of your child for the first time. Megan and I have now experienced both.

We had speculated that Megan's grandparents, Hope and Harry, would be the first to bestow baby gifts on us. They were the first, and maybe the only, people to give us an engagement gift, so we thought that might mean they would show up first for our baby. Surprisingly, my dad, Paul, came in first. A few days after taking our pregnancy test, we were meeting him down in Seattle and on his way he stopped to buy our baby a rattle and some little caps. By his account, he was all a-grin while making the purchase. To be fair, Hope and Harry did have gifts for us when we saw them a few days later. I think we are going to need a bigger apartment. The best gifts for baby right now are lots of prayers, warm thoughts, well wishes and the like.

Another first that we experienced lately was the chance to actually see the baby. This was not a detailed ultrasound (so the sex is yet to be discovered), but was simply to get a better idea of just how far along we are. The newest official due date is March 24th. I have included the ultrasound image, I think it looks like me.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Hello Friends and Family!

As many of you now know, Megan is pregnant. We are expecting our first child around the end of March. While this is the most exciting thing that has ever happened for us, we are saddened that we cannot have all the people we love around us as we prepare to welcome this child into the world. This blog will be an attempt to bring our experiences during this pregnancy a little closer to your lives, and to let you see pictures and ultrasound images and those kinds of things.
My (Matthew) intention here is entirely pure and good, however it should be noted that I am holding down three jobs, taking a full course load, and trying to participate in our preparations for the baby. This means that my intentions can be taken with a pinch of salt. Hopefully I will have the next post, featuring our first baby gifts and our first ultrasound image, posted really soon...