Two weeks later...
We left back for Tennessee the next day. It's been all quiet on the home front, with no more break-ins. It's been pretty quiet on the Farm too. We moved back into a different cabin, one across the road from our midwife's house.
I guess I should explain about the Farm Midwifery Center. It's the US's oldest freestanding (not directly attached to a hospital) birthing center. The Farm was established in Tennessee in 1970 as a hippie commune by a group of alternative lifestyle advocates from San Francisco. 38 years later it's still going as sort of a combination gated rural community/alternative lifestyle tourist attraction. It's biggest draw is the Midwifery Center.
The Center both takes care of pregnant women and trains midwives. The provide home births for local women, including the local Amish community. But they also have cabins available for women who come in from outside the area. Currently my neighbors include pregnant women from California, New York, and Illinois. We're the only ones who didn't fly in.
So basically, right now we're in a cabin in 40 year-old woods in the foothills of the Appalachias. The deer come up to the back windows. The midwife lives across the road, with more midwives down the street. There's a clinic within walking distance, a spectacular earthen swimming pool with a rock face diving cliff that's like something out of one of the more expensive hotels at Disneyworld just out of walking distance, good restaurants with cheap lunchtime buffets in driving distance, and a tourist town with a friendly obstetrical department that works with the clinic just down the road. I've had nothing to do but eat, sleep, swim and play tourist for two weeks. It's been incredibly relaxing.
It's been so blasted relaxing the baby hasn't wanted to come.
I've had three premature labors in a row. Since they were all eight and nine pound preemies, nobody was sure what the cause was. Now it looks like the premature labors might have been stress-related. This is the first time I've had a labor go full term. That's good. I keep telling myself that's good. The problem is I don't know how to cope with a full term labor.
I'm not used to the baby dropping and staying dropped. I'm not used to contractions that come and go, letting you get back to sleep. It's all starting to get a teensy bit annoying.
Meanwhile, we're not running short of days. My husband has been saving his leave days for this moment for seven years. He's enjoying the delicious feel of it being August and him not being in the classroom teaching a new class, although he has been asked to guest lecture at the Farm's alternative school.
Sunshine is taking it incredibly well. Brighteyes has had some trouble with the break in her routine. Not a day has gone by without her throwing a temper tantrum over something that she felt was out of place in some way. It's probably aggravated by her loose tooth -- she's always fussy when she's got a tooth coming out. Still, in the last few days we've made it clear that her fusses aren't helping the baby. She was shocked to realize the baby could hear her even though it hasn't been born yet. She's trying harder to keep it together. Now that she isn't spending so much energy on fusses, she's become an extremely prolific artist, doing two or three sketches a day. Her father is working his way through the exercises in How to Draw What You See and experimenting with some pastels I found on sale at a local Hobby Lobby. It's occurred to Brighteyes that she can invent her own art exercises, and she has been making detailed notes on how to draw hands.
Sunshine is drawing more as well, and is getting better at drawing individual objects. She's also working her way through a dinosaur coloring book.
I brought their math and spelling workbooks along as well. These were very helpful in the first week. Whenever they started to feel anxious and get fussy over the lack of a familiar routine, I would pull them out and they would calm down. By the second week they preferred to spend their time drawing.
And that's basically it. We've hit all the local tourist attractions and eaten at almost all the recommended restaurants. I found a consignment shop that sells new name brand children's clothing overruns for $1.50 to $5.99 and got a start on the fall clothes buying. I've almost finished the Torchwood audiobooks I never had the time to listen to at home. Tomorrow is our 20th wedding anniversary, and the day after that is the adjusted official due date.
I'm really, really ready for the baby to be born now. Okay baby?