Our pregnancy blog - Ceili Morgan due 3/13/03!
friday, january 31 :::
+ Childbirth + I jokingly told Daddy after our last childbirth class last night, "That's it! We know everything there is to know about childbirth!" Okay, maybe not, but I suppose we know a little more than we did going in. Repetition's the key, right? Besides, we got lots of freebies. I'm almost annoyed with all the formula freebies we're getting. I want to chuck them all, but I haven't brought myself to do it yet. Anyway, I feel like that 4-week class was a major hurdle, and we're one giant step closer to meeting you. Tomorrow afternoon, I learn how to make food out of my breasts, which ought to be interesting. It's supposed to be a great class, and I could certainly use a lot of educating in this particular area. I'll be going to that class without Daddy, who told me he doesn't think he will be much help in this area beyond encouragement. He will be involved in feeding you, but obviously using a bottle (with breastmilk in it). Actually, I'm thrilled by this arrangement, which will allow him some special bonding time with you, and will allow me the chance to take much-needed breaks as we go along.
By the way, would you mind shifting down just a smidgen? I'm trying to sit as upright as possible (thanks for helping me improve my posture), and you're still lodged against my ribs. It's quite uncomfortable, especially when you stretch. Yowza!
thursday, january 30 :::
+ Walking + I've read things that say that walking has very little effect on most women when it comes to starting/encouraging labor. I am not in labor, but I think I will not be most women. The pains I get in my uterus, and in very personal areas when I walk for a while are significant. I intend to do much walking before/after I go into labor.
+ Ins and Outs of Being 8.5 months pregnant + I may not be able to get off the couch without scooting to the edge and pushing off. I may huff and puff when I walk to the curb in front of the house. I may need to pee every 5 minutes. I may gasp when you rotate your head in my pelvis or kick my lungs. But it's all worth it when Daddy tells me I'm beautiful this way.
+ 34 weeks + It's a new day, and a new week, at least pregnancy-wise. Yesterday was a bad day all-around, capped off by the drama below. Basically, our HR person was wrong and doesn't understand the maternity leave policies. Not that I completely blame them - you need a Rosetta Stone to make sense of it all! You see, it's all departmentalized, and while the HR rep should be the central point of contact, it doesn't really work that way. But rest assured, Baby O., we will be home, resting, after 2/21 and nobody is going to change that.
So, tonight is our last childbirth class. I think we're actually talking about postpartum stuff tonight, so we'll see how that goes. I have my breastfeeding class on Saturday too, and I need to make some copies and return my hospital papers ASAP! I keep forgetting to do that! There's not a lot new with you, except that you are getting bigger and bigger. Last night, you took up residence in primarily the right side of my body. Okay, you're usually mostly on the right, but this was crazy. I could push my hand waaaaaaay in on the left-hand side; there was no baby body over there. But on the right? Hard as a rock! You were kicking me practically in my back, you were kicking so far around on my side. It was crazy. Daddy just laughed at us playing our push-and-kick game. I hoped you'd move while I was asleep, but you didn't move much! I guess you're comfy that way.
wednesday, january 29 :::
+ Leave + I don't understand why this has to be so complicated! The U.S. has the worst maternity leave policies in the world, but they're horribly confusing too. Especially when you factor in each company's specific practices. Ugh. I thought I totally got it, after meeting with the HR rep a couple of weeks ago. Now, I'm being told by someone else (who's requesting my FMLA paperwork) that I can't take even ONE SINGLE DAY OFF before you arrive, unless I use vacation time. WHAT?! I'm so confused. I sent an urgent, panicking note to the HR person I'd talked to, asking for help. Now I'm really worried and I'm making myself sick to my stomach. I thought I had everything planned down perfectly, from today until about May. I was getting everything nicely in order and she had to go and rock my world. NO!
+ Oh, baby! + Your room is all done! YAY! We finished the last of the touch-up, Daddy put your shelf up, and we took everything out that doesn't belong to you. It's all clean and pretty and shiny - I'm sure it won't stay that way for long. I just can't believe how much we both like it. Daddy spent a lot of time yesterday going through boxes and organizing the office. He still has a long way to go, but he literally spent all day on it. Your room is contagious; now we're working to make the rest of the house match. :) Actually, we're also trying to get ready for the shower, while doing as much intensive cleaning as possible since cleaning time will be harder to come by in a few months.
tuesday, january 28 :::
+ Thankful + One more thing I was going to note: Nobody, not one single person, has made a comment along the "You're still pregnant?" lines. Nobody's told me I look like I'm going to pop, or ready to go, or any of those sorts of things. I had one friend say she thought I had dropped, but it was really a product of the shirt I was wearing (one of those pretty long-sleeve cotton ones that ties under the bustline). I'm definitely bigger, so I'm sure those days are coming, but so far I'm thankful they haven't.
+ Work + I'll stop taking new files effective this Friday, 1/31. Then it's just 3 weeks of winding down what files I already have. I also have my performance review on 2/13 when I find out what my raise and bonus are. Baby O., we need happy thoughts. These extras will make my maternity leave a little easier.
+ Room + BTW, nesting is in full-swing. I piddled around the house last night, organizing, sorting, reorganizing. Daddy and I put what are basically the finishing touches on your room. I touched up the paint, we switched your changing table and dresser locations, and hung 2 nice pictures. The only thing left is re-making the twin bed in there (which our friend's son slept on during the NYE party and I never re-made), and hanging the shelf over your changing table. Then it's all ready for the shower goodies, and for you. :) The best part of last night was catching Daddy several times, standing in the doorway of your room with the light on, just looking at everything with a little smile on his face. He LOVES your bedroom. I hope you like it half as much!
+ 33w5d + Doctor's appointment was uneventful. It was kind of fun having Daddy go with me though. He hasn't gone in a while, and I think he enjoyed kind of touching base with the process a little. I measured "right on" (33 cm I guess?), your heartbeat sounded great, my bp was 110/60, my weight was up a little too much in my opinion at another 4 pounds (15 total so far). He thinks everything's perfect though. My weight gain must be associated with all that fatigue the last few weeks - I think you're growing quickly suddenly. Of course, he said I "still have room in there" which made me laugh. I can't imagine how you could possibly have much more room. He said your head was already nice and low and the pains I've been feeling really are cervical stretching. Lovely. As far as my heartburn, he said I should be taking Zantac twice a day, whether I feel the heartburn coming on or not. And on those really bad days when you're up high and the single dose isn't cutting it, I'm supposed to take a double dose (which is essentially a prescription strength). He said it's completely safe. So, that's good news.
I also asked him for clarification on who will deliver you, and how they determine that. He said during business hours, it would be him, and at night or on weekends, it would be whichever OB is on call. That's what I figured, and I'm okay with that. I've only met 2 other OB's in this office, one was a woman (Dr. M.) I saw a couple of months ago and I really liked her, and one was a man (Dr. C.) I saw a couple of years ago for an annual exam, and he wasn't my favorite. He was okay, I suppose, but I'll still keep my fingers crossed that you'll get to see Dr. U. or Dr. M. on your way out.
Made the rest of my Dr's appointments through 3/10, too. She said if we need another after that one, we'll make it then. Ugh, I hope I don't need another one after that! It felt good to tell her after 2/21 not to worry about what time of day she made the appointments, since I won't be working and it won't matter. I've updated the sidebar with my new appointments. I have the Group B Strep test next appointment, and then he starts periodic internal exams after that. Yucky. Not looking forward to those.
monday, january 27 :::
+ I'm friggin HUGE, Mr. Bigglesworth! + Hmm, yeah, I have no idea what's happened to me. Apparently, my body decided to catch up. Or my guess about you going through a growth spurt last week (when I simply could NOT get enough sleep) was accurate. I'm going to try to have Daddy take a picture of me last night, because I'm huge! I waddle like crazy, I can't get up off the couch without noticeable effort, I can't fit through things I used to (try following Grandma Laurie through a store when you're 8 mos. pregnant! She squeezes through these little tiny spaces that never used to be a problem and I get stuck!), etc. Frankly, it's just pretty funny. I am trying to combine trips, wherever I am. If I'm sitting on the couch, I plot out what I'll do the next time I get up to pee (which is always imminent anyway). One time last night during the Super Bowl, I remembered that I needed to put something away in the kitchen, plug in my cell phone to charge and move some stuff from the dining room into my bedroom. Normally I would've just jumped up and done it. But this time I just kept reminding myself until I finally had to get up to pee anyway, then did it all at once. Of course, all this activity knocks me out and I end up crashing back on the couch when I'm done. Yikes. A month and a half more of this?
On top of it all, you almost never sleep, I swear! I think you have finally run out of all possible room. I feel you now so much, I can only imagine I'm feeling you wiggle in your sleep now. Otherwise, you really don't sleep at all. I'm hopeful that you've been sleeping at night, since you really hardly ever wake me up by moving. Maybe you'll keep that up when you come!
We were very busy this weekend, finalizing some things around the house. We're still not done, but we've made so much progress, it's exciting. The storage shed in the backyard is done, which means we can put some of the stuff in the laundry room (tools, etc.) out there, which means I got to clean the laundry room and empty the camping/sporting goods out of your closet into the laundry room! See how every improvement is a chain reaction? Daddy has proudly exclaimed that he now has "storage shed technology" like in a video game. He believes he is invincible now. :) I touched up some paint in your room I've been meaning to touch up for a while, we selected some very nice pictures for your room, and I've gone through the remaining boxes in there too. I plan to finish the touch-ups tonight, and switch the positions of your dresser and changing table. Then, if daddy hangs your pictures, your room essentially will be DONE! I'm sooooo happy about this, you have no idea.
Anyway, I'm counting the days till I'm done working (20, if you are interested, or 4 full weeks, including today). I'm definitely getting more uncomfortable and I just can't imagine I'll feel like working in 4 weeks. Yikes. I have lists of things to do on my maternity leave (meet your pediatrician, completely re-do my bedroom, get my hair re-styled and get a pedicure, go through the bathroom, finish the kitchen curtains, etc. Yep. You'd better not come early!
friday, january 24 :::
+ Another weird thing + I forgot to tell you... When we went to Babies R Us to update your registry, it needed quite a bit of cleaning-up. Interestingly, your stroller/travel system was on there after all. In fact, it was on there with another one I'd spotted aaaaages ago when we first did the registry. Plus some of the things I put on while online weren't really available in the store. So we replaced some of those things (like your Snugli and some sheets), and cleaned it up. I just thought it was interesting that the travel system was actually already there. And it's still not showing up online. Go figure.
+ Medicine + Well, we found you a pediatrician! I hope. My OB Dr. told me to go to Camelback Pediatrics, which I've heard other good things about. But the insurance stuff all says they're not taking new patients. This is true, according to the receptionist, except new babies! Go figure. They must leave some cushion in there for newborns. So I have an appointment with a female doctor for the week after I'm off of work to see if she'll be good for you. I'm sure she will; all the doctors at this practice are supposed to be great. I just hope you're not here yet!
+ Lack of energy + I know my entries are getting, well, a little static. I am just getting tired. It must be that point in pregnancy, I guess. The joy of being pregnant is wearing off. I'm far from miserable, don't get me wrong. I have more apathetic moments than I have unpleasant ones (except when the heartburn hits at 2:00 a.m. and I want to shoot someone). And, well, I suppose I've hit the nail on the head, so to speak. I'm getting apathetic. Not about you coming! I'm still very happy about that, it just still seems so damned far in the future. Meanwhile, I'm still having daily panic attacks by the fact that you'll be here before we know it. I know that is contradictory and makes no sense, but if anyone else is reading this who's been pregnant, you know exactly what I'm talking about.
Childbirth class was boring. Daddy almost fell asleep. He had to rub my back for what seemed like ages (for both of us) while I practiced the breathing that nearly makes me hyperventilate. Then we watched more videos, including a moderately interesting c-section one. The finale was a video orientation of the hospital, which had some good info in it that we didn't know. They do have LDR rooms - that's all they have for laboring! And they're all private, of course. After 1-2 hours in the LDR room, you move to a post-partum room, most of which are private, but there are some semi-private too. :-( She said they fill up the private ones first, regardless of who you are or what your insurance is or anything. Then they fill up the semi-privates. I hope I go into labor when nobody else does so I can get a private room. I just can't imagine.
Anyway, that's all. You're still kicking me endlessly. I still have heartburn. I huff and puff like an elephant when I walk more than 10 feet. My feet and hands swell up if I don't move around enough. Yep, it's a joy to be me. Hopefully a restful weekend of Super-Bowl-watching will do something to improve my attitude.
+ Yucky + My heartburn just keeps getting worse and worse. I may have to resort to calling the Dr. before Monday. Plus, I'm starting to get toothaches. I have 2 or 3 right now, which means I need to find a dentist. My insurance doesn't cover my old dentist. I hate dentists. I hope after childbirth a trip to the dentist will seem like nothing. I really hope.
wednesday, january 22 :::
+ Daddies + You know, I said your daddy is getting a little more used to the delivery idea lately. It seems nearly each night, as we're getting ready for bed, he has a new question for me. Last night's question was what would happen if I went into labor and he was at work? You see, he can't just up and leave on a second's notice. Well, he could, but it would be very very bad. I explained to him that I would probably be okay for a little while until he could get home, and worst-case scenario, I'd call my mom or my brother to take me to the hospital. Or 9-1-1 if I had to! But I really hope he's not working then. He works one really hard week per month - guess which week is that week in March?! The week you're due! Ugh. But I told him we'd cross that bridge when/if we came to it, and we'd probably have warning. Hopefully that's the case. Of course, he asked me how much warning and how long I'd be in labor... Um, those are the magic questions, now, aren't they? I don't have the answers to those! Silly Daddy.
+ Purchases + I bought you a CD and three books today. The three books are good ones, old and new classics. One is Where the Wild Things Are, which was probably my favorite book when I was little. One is Goodnight Moon, which won awards for being an awesome book. And another is Guess How Much I Love You, which I've heard fabulous things about. As soon as I get them, I'll start reading them for you. You'll probably know them by heart by the time you're a toddler.
Nothing new to report. I'm starting to have some minor swelling in my hands when I wake up in the morning, and my heartburn is getting worse. Neither of those are particularly surprising, but I'll bring them both up to the Dr. next Monday. I hope you're doing okay in there. I'm absolutely exhausted today, so I'm wondering if you're going through a growth spurt, since I really slept pretty normally last night. Who knows? But I'm having more and more people tell me lately how well I'm carrying you, which surprises me. I feel like a cow! But everyone's comments are always, "Wow! You look great. You haven't gained a pound; it's all baby!" Those are nice compliments, but I know you don't weigh 11+ pounds, so I know that isn't true. Either way, I'm still hoping the Dr's right and I'll weigh less after you're born than my pre-pregnancy weight. I'd like to be very active and enjoy doing fun outdoorsy things with you.
I bought a package of long menstrual pads yesterday at the grocery store, in preparation for the lovely after-the-birth issues nobody wants to think or talk about. Someone told me what to get, so I went and got those. They'll also come in handy if my water breaks. Thank God for the self-checkouts at the grocery store. I think the checkout folks would have looked at me funny: an 8-month pregnant woman buying maxi-pads. Hrmmmm...
tuesday, january 21 :::
+ Back to reality + One thing that struck me this weekend is this shifting sense of reality I have had lately. It reminds me of planning the wedding. I could imagine myself married, but it was the getting-there part that threw me off. This whole pregnancy, I have been enjoying every moment of it, without really focusing on the reality of labor. Yes, I can talk about it and say what I think I want, what I think I'll be flexible or firm about. But when it comes to actually imagining myself going into labor, going to the hospital, waiting painfully through the hours of labor... Well, it's just hard to visualize. Much like planning the wedding: I could plan the flowers and the music and the decorations and the vows. But actually being there, in the middle of all of my plans and dreams and having it all be reality? I truly couldn't visualize it until it was happening to me. I suppose I just remind myself that as scary as that can be, it's also wonderful. It ended up being so far beyond my imagination and basically, was a series of euphoric moments that I will treasure forever. That's the best part. All the planning is necessary to be as prepared as you can be for the absolute unknown that is to come. And here we are, waiting and planning.
+ Today + Good morning, little one. You are having a field day in there this morning. Actually, you just stopped (fell asleep, I presume) after hours of stretching and rolling. If my shirt were tighter, everyone around me would be able to watch your antics. Hope you're having fun! I am never really sure if you're irritated by your lack of room or content and wriggly. Who knows?
This weekend we did a LOT of walking. I think your daddy is nesting, as he's working on all kinds of things around the house. His storage shed is almost done, and we bought all new living room furniture. My to-do list in my head is getting longer, not shorter, and someday I'll have to find the time to really get working on it. I have lots of new aches and pains, and weird feelings in new places. You appear to be happily back to your head-down, feet-in-my-right-ribs position and have been there for several days. Every once in a while, something happens in there that I can only assume is you changing positions, that literally takes my breath away. Daddy always looks at me funny when I gasp from one of these weird feelings, but I simply can't help it! It's not always very comfortable, but it usually passes quickly.
We updated and finished your registry this weekend. There are lots of nice things on there I look forward to getting and/or buying for you. I do need to find an outfit to bring you home in, but Daddy usually won't look at clothes with me (he figures we'll get a nice outfit for a gift). I still want to be the one to pick it out though.
One month exactly from today is my last scheduled day of work. Wow! Things really are starting to wind down, and I have to call sometime this week to get some help with planning daycare. I'm still not sure when we'll need it or how flexible we'll need it to be, which is why I've procrastinated, but I can't wait any longer. If I do, we won't have any choices of where you'll go. That would be bad.
friday, january 17 :::
+ Bubbles + What on earth are you doing in there?! I feel all these bubble-y feelings from top to bottom. I'm wearing tighter pants today and I can only guess you don't like them. My goodness!
Anyway, todays updates are: I ordered the breastpump yesterday afternon. Just $75! I got the confirmation in my email this morning, and we should have the Medela Pump-In-Style, Companion model by midweek next week. We had another childbirth class last night, this one was about breathing, massage, and basic non-medical intervention. I'm not so sure about the breathing, but I understand the purpose. Historically, I've been very good about being able to center myself and focus on my breathing and my physical relaxation in times of stress. I can only guess about whether I'll be able to do this in labor, but I don't think I'm any more likely with these forced ways of breathing. I'm going to work some more on meditation and focus in the next few weeks on my own time, because I think for me they will be more useful. That instructor is starting to drive me nuts. She tried to convince us that getting an epidural will cause our baby to be cranky, lethargic and unstable for the first 6 weeks of its life. I know that to not be medically true, except in rare or extreme cases. Whatever. Finally, your Grandma Laurie is on her way to San Francisco to march in protest of a war that scares all of us who will make up your family. This is not a typical Grandma thing to do, and I hope one day you'll be proud of her.
+ Boys + My good online friend Angie just found out she and her husband are having a BOY! Most likely, you'll like boys someday, believe me. This one will come to join the world sometime about 3 months after you do! Yay!
thursday, january 16 :::
+ Travel System + &*($@)&*(#@&*(%)#^()*@#()_!@()*%(*&*(_^%$#@
The stupid travel system we're registered for disappeared AGAIN!?!?!?!?! Friggin' stupid registry. Now I have to drive to BFE to go to a physical Babies R US - they're both on opposite extremes of town and we live in the middle - to see if the darned thing is still showing up on the in-store registry or not. Come on, people!?!
+ Are you comfy down there? + Dearest Ceili, I'd like to thank you for the moment of excitement last night. Daddy let me lie down on the couch last night, and after I'd been there a few minutes, you decided to move. Now, this wasn't your normal "movement" where you kick my right ribs and wiggle your head in my pelvis. No. This was MOVEMENT. You decided, for reasons known only to you, to change positions completely. I have no idea how you're lying now, but OH MY GOSH that was the weirdest feeling I've had in the last 8 months. It literally took my breath away. I gasped and I'm sure I had a look of horror on my face. Daddy was immediately concerned, and I smiled just a little to let him know I wasn't in labor, but I couldn't say anything for a few seconds. You wriggled about in your new position, settling in, and I think that's how you still are. I think what you've done is pull your head up and slide your butt down. You feel much more... sideways now. Lying on my side last night in bed, I felt you much more acutely where my side hit the bed than I used to. You haven't dropped, though, of that I'm sure, so that's good news I guess. You still feel fairly high up, just different. I'm drinking some soda right now and waiting for the neat rib shots I always get... But instead, I'm feeling all kinds of weird movements down low. I think it's going to take a while to get used to this.
wednesday, january 15 :::
+ Great developments + So, I met with HR today. I'm not quite getting the benefits I thought I would, but they're still quite good. I'm going to take 3 weeks off before my due date, making my last day of work 2/21. I'm going to take 8 weeks off after the delivery as well. That will be nice. She gave me a number to call for some work/life resource program that we have as a company to get a new parents' pack of some sort with freebies. Well... Turns out it is a LOT more involved than that. Among other things, like having a registered lactation consultant available to me by phone 24/7 and having lots of wonderful freebies, resources and referral programs (like for daycare, which I'm going to look into next), but it turns out my employer subsidizes the breast pump I was going to buy!!! I can choose any model of the Medela Pump-In-Style, which runs around $300 (plus tax) and it will be shipped to me via 3-day UPS for $75! Period! No tax, no shipping, nothing! I was going to buy this anyway, so I'm glad I just haven't gotten it yet. I'll save about $250 when it's all said and done! The woman on the phone was sooooo nice, and so helpful, we talked for at least 1/2 hour. What a wonderful way to end my day.
I also talked to your Aunt Chelsie, who I found out follows along here sometimes (Say "HI" to Aunt Chelsie, Ceili!), and finalized the plans for the baby shower. Looks like we're planning Saturday, 2/8, in the afternoon. We're going to see her and Uncle CR on Saturday at Tom and Talmar's and give them the final guest list. Of course, we have a couple of addresses still to get before then, but that's mostly Daddy's job!
That's the big news. I feel like there's something else, but my frazzled pregnant brain can't remember it. You're kicking up a storm, and probably anxious for some food. Let's go see what we can find for you...
+ 31w6d + It's getting harder to get up and go to work. I just want to sleeeeeeeeep! On top of it all, I woke up at about 4:00 this morning, having trouble breathing, having heartburn and desperately thirsty. After using the restroom, chugging a glass of water and taking a Zantac, I sort of made it back to sleep for another hour or so. But I'm still having trouble breathing. I'm puzzled as to whether it's you, which seems to be the logical explanation, or something more sinister. It's actually almost painful to breathe, like pneumonia or something, but I don't have any other symptoms. I suppose I will have to keep an eye on it.
In other news... I finally took another belly picture, as I mentioned yesterday, and I uploaded it last night. Here it is. No big promises. Joe's still learning how to use the digital camera, so it's blurry. Grrrrrrr. Sorry about that. I feel much bigger than I look in the picture, too, so I'm wondering about that trick photography. :-)
tuesday, january 14 :::
+ Movement + You're moving around a ridiculous amount today. I just stuck my hand on the spot you've been kicking for the last 3 months, and I keep feeling a clicking when you are particularly active. Now, that's either your knees knocking or it's my damned ribs, which are aching from all your calisthenics! Daddy tells me to stop when I yell at you to knock it off, so I won't tell you that anymore. But c'mon! I can't concentrate on what I'm doing!
+ Doctor, Doctor + Another uneventful doctor's visit. I suppose that's a good thing and I should be grateful, but I keep waiting for some excitement. Don't worry; I'm fully aware that there will come a rather exciting time in the very near future and I shouldn't be in such a darned hurry for it. :-)
He says we're doing well! Your heartbeat is "very strong" and sounded that way to me. My bp was 122/62, and I measured right on for 31.5 weeks. Furthermore, he was thrilled to say the least about my weight gain. Now, if readers know me IRL, they'll know that I have gotten MUCH bigger in the last 4 weeks (since my last appointment). I do have a picture from yesterday which I'm going to upload tonight for everyone's amusement, so watch for that tonight or tomorrow. But how much weight have I gained in 4 weeks, while my waistline rapidly multiplied? A pound and a half! Yes, indeedy. That puts my total weight gain at 11 pounds. Now, I hate to say this, but I know that makes it sound like I'm a very large girl who could be pregnant without gaining anything (not that there's anything wrong with that, I'm just saying...). But I'm not, I swear! I'm definitely not little, but I'm not that un-little. ;-) He said I'm exactly where he wants me to be, and that he's certain at this point that after the baby is delivered and I come back to "normal" that I will definitely weigh LESS than I did before I was pregnant, and even less than that if (when) I breastfeed. Groovy! That's what I like to hear. My running joke now is that pregnancy appears to be the perfect weight-loss program for me. Ha! Even daddy has commented on how my legs and arms look better than they did before. Weird.
Anyway, he did say we won't get another ultrasound unless something goes wrong. That's a bummer, but not that surprising. I asked him if you were head-down, and he said he thought so, but couldn't quite tell because you're still small (normal small, not abnormally small). He thinks he'll be able to tell better next time. So, my next appointment is in 2 weeks, then another in 2 weeks (on 2/10), and then we're on weekly appointments. That's good, because I'm hoping to go on leave 2/21, so it won't interfere too much with work after 2/17.
+ Sneaky + One of my co-workers (a particularly social one) just asked me when my last day was and where we're registered. Subtle. ;-) That means, "When is the last day we can plan your baby shower?" I am so lucky to work on a team of 100% women. That's been very helpful, as they've been excited and supportive of me throughout this pregnancy. And they always have baby and bridal showers, so I figured it was only a matter of time. What nice people!
+ Monday + Well, a few interesting things happened over the weekend. Milestones of some sort, I suppose. Friday evening, daddy went out so we had some time alone. I played with your room, organizing and moving things around, and finished the cute liners for the baskets on your changing table. They turned out very well, and I had an absolute blast doing it. Go figure. Saturday morning, I noticed something new - stretch marks! Yippee. :-/ Not a lot, and I'm still considering myself lucky, but I see signs they won't stay so innocuous. I already had a couple on my hips, and now I have more, little ones from my hips onto the very sides of my belly. Grand. Then, Sunday morning as we were sitting in church, I noticed how swollen my hands were. I tried to pull my wedding ring off and almost couldn't. Mind you, I gave up on my diamond engagement ring a week or so ago. Not that it was smaller, but I figured one ring might be easier to bear tight than two. Nope. Enough was enough. So the rings are in their Helzberg ring box in the shadow box from our wedding in our bedroom for a while. I'm going to wait until after you're born and have them re-sized. They were tight before I was pregnant anyway. So last night I went out and bought a (very nice) sterling silver wedding band for about $10. It looks very nice, though it's actually a little big. When I bought it, my hands weren't swollen at all, so I figured a little big was good. I'm waiting for the swelling this morning to see how it fits.
Anyway, that's the update. Today is the first of our every-2-week appointments. I have a conflict with a work meeting, so that might have to be rescheduled but I'm hoping not.
friday, january 10 :::
+ Pokes + Dearest daughter, what exactly are you poking me with? I think it's a foot, but it's coupled with so many other odd sensations, it's kinda hard to tell. Whatever it is, you've gotten quite fond of sticking it out and leaving it there. Very very very strange sensation.
+ Learning to birth a baby, part one + So, the first childbirth class is history. Daddy and I concurred that we didn't really learn a lot, but that we're okay with that. There were a couple of things he didn't know about (BM's during labor, episiotomy), so he felt it was worthwhile to have learned anything. Plus, we figure if we feel at the end of the 4 weeks that we knew what we needed to before starting the classes (I do a LOT of reading of books and online), then we'll be just that much more confident going in that we are as prepared as we can be. I agree with him completely. The instructor, Michele, is very much a pro-natural birth former nurse. She quit nursing in 11/2001 when she was put on bedrest 3 months before her daughter was born. After her daughter was born, she never went back. I don't know how to phrase it right, but I can just tell she's one of those people I simply can't relate to. Her approach to birth, life, family, career, and her philosophies about all of them are just completely different from mine. Don't get me wrong, I fantasize about staying home with my children too, but for slightly different reasons and overall a more realistic approach.
Having said that, it will be good for us to learn all we can about this process, and consider all the different possibilities out there. As she said, you won't get an epidural until you're pretty far into the process (which I knew), so you might as well embrace some of the natual-birth techniques for relaxation and visualization to make that first part more pleasant. I absolutely agree with that part, and planned to do just that. Ideally, I'll go as long as I can stand it without the epidural. If I get to the point where I can still stand it and the Dr. tells me it's now or never? Well, I'll make that decision if I get to that point. But I've planned all along to get one, so I won't feel remotely disappointed if I have to. She did say that she didn't think Good Samaritan Hospital does walking epidurals yet, though, which disappoints me greatly. I'll have to ask my Dr. about that since Michele wasn't positive. She hasn't been nursing there for over a year, so she might be wrong.
Anyway, there's the full report. There were six women with their coaches, all husbands except for one female friend/partner (?). We thought we were at 100% girl babies until one couple came in late and she's having a boy. We all looked and carried differently, and 2 people are due 2/27. It will be interesting to watch over the next month to see the changes in us all.
You slept through much of the class, waking up only when I was drinking ice water on a break, and when we were doing a brief relaxation exercise. It was during this exercise that Daddy made the funny comment of the night: "You'd better get drugs because I'm not very good at this." HA! Well, we'll work on that. I think he could be very good at helping me relax, if he wanted to try and was willing to learn. That's why he's there with me! :-) You are vividly awake this morning, however. Not sure why, but it feels like you're dancing! Neat!
+ 31 weeks + Today is 31 weeks, little one. Can you believe that? We're getting so close to meeting. It's weird that I've spent every second of my life since mid-June 2002 with you, and you're still a complete stranger to me. I wonder what you will look like, what your likes and dislikes will be, what little things you'll do that will make me wonder how I ever lived without you in my life.
Tonight is our first childbirth class. That should be interesting! I'm starting to have some odd little aches and pains in new places. My left ankle hurts, more so every day. I have twinges and pains in private places once in a while. Last night, I couldn't sleep well. Daddy said I was breathing really hard, which I reminded him is because I have a baby's butt in my ribs. Ha! It's true though. More often than not, I'm pretty sure your little baby bottom is right in the middle of my stomach, right up under my ribs. That lets your knees bend down and your little feet kick under my right ribs all day, every day. Your little head and hands poke around nice and low on the left side, which is not very comfortable. But I'm almost positive this is how you're lying, and since it's not breech, I won't complain too much.
wednesday, january 8 :::
+ YAAAAAAAAAAY + I passed the 3-hour glucose test!!! Yippee! I hate failing tests. :-) I called the Dr's office to find out when I would know my results, and they called me back with the verdict. I asked her if I'd passed all of the blood draws (since I know some people will fail one or two of them and be labeled borderline) and she told me all the numbers were just fine! Thank God! I will enjoy my bag of peanut M&M's after lunch without guilt then. And you will not be an 11-pound baby afterall. Whew.
+ First + One person from the Labor of Love Due in March forums has delivered her baby, the first from our March group. Her baby was born 1/1, and is in the NICU of course. We're all praying for a healthy outcome, but it's just amazing to me that the babies are starting to arrive! She was 2 lbs, 10 oz. It gives me comfort that you're getting bigger in there, and if you came now, you'd probably be okay. Considering the way you kick me, I don't think you'd give anything up without one hell of a fight!
+ Well, good morning! + You are an active little baby this morning. More active with this root beer on an empty stomach than you were even with that orange glucose junk. Weird! I'll give you food in a few minutes though, so hang on. Daddy got to see my stomach moving last night, and you let him feel you a little bit. You were so active, but you still pulled your little trick of stopping when someone else touches you. No fair! My assistant was talking to me yesterday when you were doing some kicking exercises and stopped mid-sentence and said, "I saw that! She's moving, isn't she?" Yes, you can be seen making my stomach warp from a distance of 5 feet. Neat party trick, that.
tuesday, january 7 :::
+ Work plans + I have spent the morning catching up on my work (how can I have a zillion emails when I was only out ONE day?!?!), and one of the emails was from my boss, detailing the plans involving my team and my leave. That's making things a little more real. My asst. manager asked when my last day would be, and I explained to her that I needed to talk to HR first. Joe and I seem to have decided it should be 2/21 though. That's 6.5 weeks from now. Um, wow. Anyway, the game is in play and the plans are being made. It's relieving but still pretty alarming. Maternity leave. Geez.
+ "A 3-hour tour" + First, I want to publicly thank those folks out there who sent me notes privately about their experiences and advice with this 3-hour glucose tolerance test, and their pregnancies in general. I am amazed what wonderful people there are out there, and though many people keep seemingly independent, unrelated journals, we are still a community. And that community strengthens each of us. The words of advice and experience carried me right into that yicky appointment yesterday and helped me be ready. So, thank you.
Now, on to updates. Yes, it's over. Thank God. It was much better than I'd feared, but still unpleasant. My fear of needles was tested more than ever, as my blood was drawn FIVE darned times (once before the orange drink, then 1/2 hour after, 1 hour after, 2 hours after and finally 3 hours after). They poked both arms, and I have a new understanding of my body (including which veins I want them using in the future and which ones I don't - Youch!). Fortunately, none of the blood draws stopped bleeding (I have had this problem before), and the bruising appears minor. I am quite sore in both arms though. They were 1/2 hour late starting me - grumble grumble - and this place was so pathetically boring it was painful. I had my choice of lemon-lime or orange, and I happily chose orange. The very nice tech told me that was a very wise decision; he's tried both and the lemon-lime made him sick. It was a little sweeter than the one I took at the Dr's office, and the bottle even had sugar caked on the rim. Fortunately, I drank out of a styrofoam cup and it was nice and cold. Then it was back to the TV-less waiting room. Joe didn't come with me after all, so I was on my own as floods of people came and went and I read my book. Most of the time, I was able to concentrate, and when I couldn't I would take a couple of minutes to people-watch. This is a stand-alone lab that does all kinds of blood, urine and x-ray testing, for employment screenings, one-off medical testing and ongoing "standing order" testing for chronic illnesses. It was actually moderately interesting. Except that I noticed by about 1/2 hour into this experience that I was the only one who didn't get to go back, get blood drawn, and leave. People looked at me strangely when I came back out to the waiting room and sat back down. Oh, well. If they'd watched me longer, they would have gotten quite a show from you, Ceili, about 45 minutes after drinking the soda stuff. You were trying to get out of my stomach, weren't you? I seriously had to keep myself from laughing. I couldn't put my book on my tummy because you were making me jump so much.
About 2 hours in, I started to get a bit drowsy. That's probably not surprising as I came down from the sugar high. I didn't fall asleep, wasn't even really close, but I was bored and tired and wanted to go home. This was the test (at 2 hours) they were late for. There was NObody in the waiting room, and by my watch they were 15 minutes late on my blood draw. I finally went and asked the receptionist, who was chatting with one of the techs. Turns out she had been with someone else when the timer went off, and she FORGOT me. She took me back then, and the next was exactly an hour later, but I wonder how long I would've sat in that waiting room alone, waiting for a forgotten blood draw while falling asleep. Yuck.
When it was over, I drove home, munching a bagful of cashews and drinking a bottle of water. That did well, and I ate real food when I got home. About an hour later, I was just out of it, and to bed we went. I woke up about 3 hours later. Yep, I am glad I took a vacation day yesterday. I would've been miserable at work after that. But, all in all, I think I was lucky. I didn't get results as we went, unfortunately, and I don't know when I will get them. I figure the worst-case scenario is that I'll get them when I have my Dr's appointment next Monday.
Meanwhile, you and I are doing fine. Your kicks are crazy-hard sometimes, and I told daddy over the weekend that I will miss being pregnant. He thought that was weird, and asked me why. I told him it was definitely one of -if not THE - most interesting things I'd ever experienced. There are rough moments, and physical challenges, but it really is fascinating to witness my body's changes and see its ability to care for a baby. My dreams are getting more vivid and more reality-driven, as you get closer to arriving. I'm sure that will only be compounded once we start birthing classes this Thursday.
friday, january 3 :::
+ Leave + So, I still haven't gone down to talk to the HR folks, but I was talking to another pretty new mommy (delivered 1/02) about leave. See, here's the thing: I'm doing fine, I have no pre-term labor worries yet, and everything's hunky-dory. But I'm ready to be off of work. I adore my job, and I'm the kind of person who will go absolutely stir-crazy at home. I know that. And yet... I want to stay home. I was initially planning to work until 3/7, the Friday before my due date. But now I'm thinking of leaving at the end of February, or sooner. It's going to get harder to move around, let alone concentrate on what I'm doing. And I'm eligible for 4 weeks before, 2 at full pay, 2 at 2/3 pay. That's pretty generous, and if I don't use them, I lose them. In other words, I can't apply them after you're born. So why not have a little time to get my act in gear? Coupled with my daily panic by realizing how painfully soon you'll be here, the thought of getting things done soon is absolutely tantalizing. I don't know what I'll do yet. I need to go talk to the HR people, which I've been saying for months. Maybe next week I'll actually do it. But right now, I'm really happy by the thought of being home, maybe the last week or two of February. Wow. That's, like, next month.
thursday, january 2 :::
+ 2003 + So, I was accused of nesting on Tuesday night. I was explaining to our friend Talmar that I was planning to spend New Year's Day taking down Christmas decorations, because I just couldn't stand them anymore. I LOVE Christmas, and I love the way our house looks decorated. Even daddy commented on how pretty it was throughout the season. But for some reason, they just needed to come down. Sure enough, Wednesday morning I ate breakfast, then pulled every shred of Christmas decoration packaging out of your room and started packing things up. Everything is down and packed away now except the Christmas cards and the lights and decorations outside (wreath, ribbons, etc.). Daddy's taking down the lights today and when I get home I'll take down the rest.
You and I are doing well! Today is 30 weeks, which means that we are in single digits of remaining weeks. Daddy doesn't find that as alarming as I do, but maybe that's a good thing. I have to admit, this whole glucose test thing is wearing on my mind. It has made me realize that in general I'm really not eating as well as I should. I have better days than others, and I'm not doing anything harmful as far as I know. Not eating well when it's just me is one thing; not eating well when it involves you is another. I just wish I could have been one of those perfect pregnant mommies, with all the yoga and organic foods and in-utero music. Without the natural birth though - yick.
Oh, well. I drink a TON of water, and while I might snack more than I should and drink more soda sometimes than I should and not enough vegetables... I think I'm giving you adequate nutrition. I just need to be better about it. I'm working on that.
Anyway, that's what is on my mind right now, as we start the new year. Next week the appointments and classes start fast and furious, and hopefully we can all keep up. I need to go talk to the HR people about my leave too. I want to have that straightened out before you get here!
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Chicken Soup for the Expectant Mother's Soul
Mayo Clinic Guide to Pregnancy and Baby's First Year
What to Expect When You're Expecting
Your Pregnancy Week by Week
3/13 - Due Date
3/10 - OB Dr. U. (checkup)
3/4 - OB Dr. U. (checkup)
2/27 - pediatrician appt.
2/24 - OB Dr. U. (checkup)
2/21 - last day of work
2/18 - OB Dr. U. (checkup)
2/10 - OB Dr. U. (GBS test)
2/10 - baby care class
2/8 - family baby shower
2/1 - breastfeeding class
1/30 - childbirth class 4 1/27 - OB Dr. U. (checkup)
*4 lbs. gain 1/23 - childbirth class 3
1/16 - childbirth class 2
1/15 - Meeting w/H.R.
1/13 - OB Dr. U. appt.
*1.5 lbs. gain 1/9 - childbirth class 1
1/6 - 3-hr glucose test 12/17 - OB Dr. M. (glucose)*
*6.5 lbs. gain 11/19 - OB Dr. U. (checkup)*
*3 lbs. gain 11/13 - OB Dr. U. (cancelled)
10/9 - OB Dr. U. (ultrasound)
9/19 - PCP Dr. P. (checkup)
9/9 - OB Dr. U. (doppler)
9/5 - GI Dr. M. (checkup)
8/1 - OB RNP (ultrasound)