We Choose Life



I proudly wear my Choose Life T-shirt today.

After accumulated medical bills for doctor’s appointments, c-section, and hospital stay, as well as necessary purchases to accommodate the baby into our life such as baby supplies and a bigger car (4 kids in a 3 seated backseat is impossible), this will baby cost us over $14,000 by the time she leaves the hospital.

My maternity leave will also cost us money. While I am allowed FMLA, this does not mean I get 100 percent of my pay. It will cost me 100 dollars a day to be able to stay 8 weeks with my baby (standard FMLA for c-section deliveries), costing us an additional $4000. And I’m blessed with a job that even offers that. I just have to pay for my substitute teacher.

Then each month thereafter until she begins Kindergarten, once added day-care costs accumulate as well as cost for diapers, formula (if breastfeeding is not successful), solid foods, clothes, etc–it will cost an additional 600-700 a month for her. This is if she is healthy and does not need to go to the doctor’s.

We do not qualify for government assistance so we have to come up with the money on our own. But just because we don’t qualify does not mean this money is just lying around. These costs require us to make sacrifices and cut out other expenses, and it involves having to work harder and smarter to increase our income. This is even after frugally piling up charitable  hand-me-down baby items, and saving up left over baby items from our previous children (although not much from that because we gave most away after our vasectomy, having no idea we’d get pregnant again). This even includes utilizing health insurance.

Add to this the added physical tole the necessary 4th C-section will be on my body and the possible consequences it may have on my health due to the risks: blood transfusions, bladder rupture, intestinal complications, infection, possible hysterectomy, etc.

By many people’s standards, this baby could be viewed as “financially inconvenient” and a “health risk.” But we STILL choose life. We choose to see the blessing and not the hardship. We choose to give this precious human being a right to live. Because her life is worth it. Because God knit her together for a reason.

We will be okay. We may not have fancy furniture. We may not have trips to Hawaii. We may have to clip coupons and eat out less. We may have a frontyard that stays unlandscaped for a few more years. Who knows.

We may also not. Who can know the future. A fire could come again and burn our house down. My children’s books may take off once we publish and I may make more money than I ever had as a teacher.

Who can know the future? But Still We Choose Life. And We trust that God will get us through anything that comes our way in the future because of that decision.

We cannot wait for October 27th when I get to meet this little Scotland Amalia-Leme. We love her so much already.

If you are pregnant and concerned about the financial risks and inconvenience of having a baby, please don’t choose abortion. Check out resources like Pregnancy Resource Center. They can offer free and discounted baby supplies, as well as free parenting classes to help you feel prepared for this change in your life. You DO have a choice– a choice for life. There are ways to take care of this baby. And any other mother who has chosen life will tell you, the baby will be a blessing and worth every sacrifice and change in your life.


The Dreaded Gestational Diabetes Test

glucose drinkEvery single time I am pregnant, I have to take that dreaded sugar test. For some reason, they don’t like my first test scores and I have to go in for the second test which is way worse–you have to fast. And then they take your blood three times over the course of three hours after giving you an orange-flavored beverage with 75 g of sugar packed into it.


This time, I only had to take one test. But it was a 2-hour fasting.


Now the good part is that I passed. I always pass. But the interesting part is that this time, I got to see my results because my doctor went all digital and I can now access all my reports online. The interesting part is that my insulin works so well it is almost too good.


So basically healthy sugar levels are between 70-90. At fasting I was 70. So it was on the low side of normal. Then one hour after I drank the sugar, I raised to just 72. If you have gestational diabetes, you sky rocket to a 100 or more. Then two-hours after I drank the sugar, I actually went HYPO-glycemic. My bloodsugar dropped to 68. No wonder I was feeling shaky! By the time I hit Costco afterward (I was planning on snacking as I went grocery shopping) I was breaking out in a sweat and having a hard time even thinking.

I’ve always treated myself like a hypoglycemic because I have the symptoms. I can’t eat sugary breakfast because within 3 hours I’m light-headed and seeing stars. I have to eat like every 3-hours, otherwise I get “hangry” as I like to call it.


So it makes sense now. I run on the low side of normal, but eating sugar can actually send my blood sugar crashing after just 2 hours. Now I understand why my mom used to give me string cheese when I’d start feeling like garbage. Protein on the other hand helps me feel great and last longer between meals.


When I’m pregnant, sugary breakfasts affect me even worse. As much as I crave a delicious bowl of cereal when I wake up, instead I shoot for a bean burrito or a protein shake packed with veggies and fruit. I can handle the fruit as long as it has protein in it.


What is your experience when eating high carb/high glucose foods? Do you feel fine 2 hours later? What’s your ideal breakfast? 

Pregnancy–the good, the bad, and the weird…thus far

The Good:

  • Having the excuse to eat more, sleep more, cry more, and lay around more. My husband does more things for me to around the house. It feels great to finally rest and to know it is going to be okay!
  • People insisting I don’t help with the lifting and carrying of heavy things.
  • My students are nicer and more respectful to me. They ask me questions about the baby; they compliment me on my cute belly; they ask me how I’m feeling; they show sympathy when I’m not feeling well; they laugh at all my jokes and stories; and they genuinely apologize when they mess up. Well, most of them. I still have one or two who like to bet their pennies.
  • I feel just genuinely more happy and carefree when teaching. Kids don’t frustrate me as easily. Broken copy machines, missing substitutes, and unexpected fire drills just roll off my back these days. And as for my classroom management style, eh….just don’t do it again, okay? Who am I? I used to be a drill Sargent!
  • Feeling the baby kick. Feels like popping popcorn now, and I can’t wait until it gets stronger. Owen got to feel the baby kick for the first time last night. So cool! Just wait until it looks like scenes from Alien. Or when the baby decides to kick the air out of my lungs without me expecting.
  • Talking to Kanan about the baby. He kisses my belly. He tells me he loves his baby brother or sister. He wants him to be a girl and to name her Allison (Even though the ultrasound showed us it is a boy and we think we may name him Mathias or Mateo). He wants me to hold the baby and him or to have Papa (Owen’s name) hold the baby and I hold him. He wants to help feed the baby and hold the baby too. So darn cute! Oh yeah, and he loves watching videos from Baby Center that shows the development of the baby in the womb.
  • I’ll just say it–my decolotage. I was never really blessed in that department and it feels great to fill out a blouse. My husband is enjoying the new me too.

The Bad:

  • I’m insatiably thirsty constantly. I walk around everywhere I go with a 24 oz water bottle with me. I fill it up four to five times a day and go through an entire one just to get through a night’s sleep.
  • Round ligament pain and sore spots as my belly grows. Especially if I cough really hard or get up too quickly. Gah! Right now its my right side that seems the sorest. And I believe it is exaggerated because the baby likes to hang out on that side more as well and push his little feet in the same spot.
  • Forgetting I have a belly when trying to squeeze through smaller spaces and scraping it. Like trying to get in a public bathroom stall. Who would have thought that it takes strategy to use a public restroom? I think I’ll just go straight for the disabled stall first now.
  • Going to the bathroom twice as much. And sometimes feeling like I’m going to pee my pants only to sit down and tinkle a tablespoon.
  • All the medical scares that come with being pregnant in the 21st century. What ever happened to just being pregnant and having a baby? Now I’ve got to do blood tests and ultrasounds and if anything is slightly off, they scare me with all the what if’s, risks, and possibilities and then want me to do all these other medical procedures. I believe it’s a greedy conspiracy for money.
  • Gagging every time I brush my tongue. When pregnant, the breathe-through-your-nose trick doesn’t work. Earlier in the pregnancy I had to brush twice. First brush for the sake of hygiene. The second brush to clean up the mess.
  • Watching my derriere get bigger along with my belly. I’ve gained only 6 pounds thus far and it may look like all belly, but why is it that my pants and underwear are feeling tighter around my hips too? They are low-cut, so don’t tell me its my belly.

The Weird:

  • Really dry, cracked bottom lip. I had it when I was pregnant with Kanan and I have it again. It is bad! And no amount of water or chapstick cures it. I find that taking a hot shower and then rubbing it vigorously with a dry towel after makes it look normal. Until I wake up in the morning and its is back again. Getting into the habit of pulling off the dry flakes with my teeth or my fingers. Very sexy. Especially when they bleed. Hey, no need for lipstick! I’ve got naturally stained lips!
  • Adventurous dreams! They are way more detailed with much more complicated plots. And I remember them! Of course, my husband is dumbfounded by my elaborate explanations of these dreams. But sometimes I just have to share them, they are just so crazy. Last night, I dreamed I was a senior in high school and forced to fight against the gangs to save my life, only to have the authorities and school administrators believe I was a gang member too.