remember that one stretch mark i told you about? well, one morning i got out of the shower, looked in the mirror and discovered that one had become many. all of a sudden. when did that happen?
still, i say my stretch marks aren’t that bad at this point. surely, they will get worse. that’s what everyone says when you report on a symptom or development of your pregnancy. “it’s just going to get worse.” i guess it’s hard to come up with something else to say. but oh, sometimes, i wish people would come up with something else to say.
anyway. stretch marks. check.
started another 6-week cycle of pregnancy yoga. same teacher. different pregnant women. same teacher means that during shavasana (which we pregnant ladies do on our left sides) at the end, she says, “whatever gender the baby chooses is the perfect gender” or some variation on the theme of babies choosing their genders. different pregnant women means they hadn’t heard it before. the statement does not fail to bring me right out of any sort of relaxed place. instead, i lie there wondering where she got this idea and, now that i’ve heard twice and both times during the week 2 class, how it has become part of her teaching routine.
i started a work schedule where i work an extra hour every day and get a day off every other week. i’m hoping against hope that it means i will get more baby prepping done. we shall see.
my mind has been occupied by the devastation caused by typhoon yolanda (which happened during my week 27) in the philippines. the hardest hit areas are the same cities where i lived and served as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1997-1998. tacloban. tolosa. ormoc. i can see in my mind’s eye the streets and dirt paths that i walked on, the houses/apartments i lived in. i can see the people that i loved. i can feel the air that i breathed. i love that place. those people. when i was there, i would often be surprised when i looked in the mirror and saw pale skin, blue eyes, and blonde hair. i felt that transformed, that connected. i felt filipino.
i have cried for the people there and for the devastation and loss and suffering. i have been trying to imagine what the pictures in my mind look like now. i have been trying to imagine how the current missionaries are feeling. many of them also lost everything. they are also starting over. what would i have done? how would i have felt? i cannot stop thinking about it all.
so many people are doing whatever they can to help. some are organizing groups to go to leyte to help. some are donating money. some are praying. i have one friend who is running a marathon this weekend and has decided to raise what money she can and to dedicate her run and whatever money she raises to the people. she’s already raised over $2000 in just one day.
the outpouring of love i have seen warms you. lifts you up. i can only pray that all this love finds its way to the hearts of the suffering people of the philippines. that they will have hope. that their minds will be calmed. that they will know they are loved – by people around the world and by a Father in Heaven. that they can make it to the day when help arrives. when they can eat a good meal and drink clean water.
as a pregnant lady, i will not be flying to the philippines. i will not be running a marathon. so for my part, i will donate to the humanitarian aid fund of the LDS Church. i know that all of the money i donate will go directly to helping people to meet basic needs. i know that some people’s needs have already been met because of the efforts funded by LDS humanitarian aid. it’s what i can do.