29 September 2010

33 weeks

This girl is hungry so I'll make this quick so I can go make lunch!

33 weeks today.
I do love Wednesdays because this is the day I move on to the next week in the countdown. :-)

Baby's movements are starting to change; she still punches from time to time but more often I can feel her whole body rolling against my outside. I'll feel pressure on my side- usually below my belly button- like something is pushing me from the inside and I know it's her stretching her arms.

I don't seem to look much bigger this week, but I'm carrying lower- Baby has definitely dropped down into my pelvis according to the midwife I saw this morning.

I made an appointment because I thought I had a UTI- yuck. I don't seem too though which is great news, and I did get to hear her heartbeat as part of the bargain and be measured and weighed. I'm now at 135 pounds, still on track but lordy that's heavy! (Although funny- I'm waiting to give my urine sample and reading a BMI chart and I'm still well within a healthy weight for my height, despite carrying around another human. That's reassuring.)

Anyway, back to my visit. My doctor wasn't available so I saw the midwife on staff, who I've seen before and really like. She'd be my primary care were it not for certain circumstances to do with our struggle to get pregnant a year ago. I wish I got to choose who would deliver our baby should my doctor not be available, because I'd choose the midwife. She's really nice, we chatted for a little while before discussing the excessive need to urinate that I've been experiencing the past two days. As in, I go to the bathroom and 3 minutes later need to go again. That can be a symptom of a UTI, so I went in to be safe. But my urine sample looked normal (not quite acidic enough, she asked me to get some cranberry juice to help with that); very likely my excessive problem is due to the fact that Baby has her head directly on my bladder and I'm just not able to empty it every time because she is in the way.

This picture is for me. See Sarah, you still have toned decent looking arms!! The past three days have been HOT- as in record high temps in the Bay Area, high 90s in San Mateo which means I have been struggling to be remotely comfortable, as well as being a little swollen all over. So on top of being really uncomfortable I was feeling pretty ooogly. That combination also equals cranky, and Ray has been very patient with me too, such a good husband. It's going to be cooler today in the low 80s, and clearly the yucky swollen has gone away with the heat. Thank goodness.

Ok- FOOD TIME NOW.

28 September 2010

No More Advice

Dear all,

I love you. Really I do. You, friends and acquaintances closely connected or loosely associated, are good people who mean well. I know your words come from a good place. You want to share your experiences and offer pearls of wisdom to us who haven't had our babies yet.

But however well-meaning, your advice is condescending and not helpful. Your few weeks or months as parents do not make you experts, do not make you the authority on what's going to happen when this baby shows up and how our lives will change.

Please stop telling us that our lives will change- (Oh my god you mean the around-the-clock care and raising of another human being who is completely depending on us will affect our daily routine? Why did no one tell us this?!) DUH we know that. And you actually sound pretty stupid saying it.

Please stop asking us what we are planning for delivery, if I'm going to nurse, and what kind of carseat we've picked and then telling us if we chose right or wrong. It is none of your business, and the fact that you are my age and have a matter of months under your belt doesn't make you a trustworthy source in my book.

We tried to conceive this little girl for quite a while before it happened, and I have wanted to be a mommy for much longer. Even before I was pregnant I read and researched different aspects of pregnancy and parenthood, so hungry was I for knowledge and information. All the research in the world doesn't make up for my lack of hands-on mom experience, but please don't talk to me like I'm clueless and need your little pearls of wisdom to make it through the first months of motherhood.

I know you mean well, but it's quite enough thank you. Something tells me that with some things, I know more going into this than you did, so stop telling me what's going to happen. Every baby, every parent, every scenario is different, and though we started trying first and giving birth last we will make our way. I grow tired of smiling and nodding in response to your pompous and invasive advice.

Thanks, ~S

27 September 2010

Party in San Francisco

On Saturday night Ray and I went into San Francisco to celebrate the 30th birthday of a friend of ours. First there was dinner with another couple and friend beforehand. We had a delicious meal at Perbacco, and I feasted on baby beets, housemade papardelle, white corn with wild mushrooms, and burnt caramel gelato. Great food with great company.

The birthday party was held at a boutique hotel near Union Square, and it had an 80s prom theme. I freaked at first- um, where do you find an 80s prom outfit for someone 8 months pregnant?!- but I did alright with a black dress and leggings (which you couldn't see), lace fingerless gloves, rubber bracelets and earrings. Ray found a yellow jacket a la Saved by the Bell at Goodwill.


It was WARM in the city that night- pretty unusual. My face was a little damp throughout the evening and of course no drinking for me, but I still danced nearly the whole time. Ray likes to dance too, I'm so lucky that he does. We stayed for 2 hours which I was very happy with- seeing as the party began at my usual bedtime.

This picture is called 'Big Boobs McGee'- because this is sooo not normal. :-P


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Baby is punching me, reminder that I need to head for Palo Alto- I'm picking up the crib mattress we ordered from Pottery Barn Kids at noon. Gotta go!

22 September 2010

8 Months

32 weeks. Boo ya!
Aka 8 months, which sounds so much closer to the end!
It really is a dirty trick how they teach you that pregnancy lasts 9 months, when in reality it's really 10. 36 weeks = 9 months, but you've got another 4 weeks left to go- that 9th month is a full month before you're done. Grrrr. No fair.

Our Chickpea:

Continues to be a little mover and shaker. Occasionally she pokes me in the side and it hurts; I just poke back and say "stop that!" I can tell that she's starting to run out of room, as her kicks and punches are feeling different- 'bigger' if that makes sense.

Me:

Not much new to report this week besides feeling more fatigued. I've have more back pain, but we went out and got me an exercise ball which will help a lot. Many people have these already but we didn't. I can use it three-fold: when exercise (great for ab work when pregnant), sitting on like a chair (huge help with the back pain), and I'll be bringing it to the hospital to use in labor. Sitting on it helps to open the hips and also relieve back labor.

16 September 2010

31 Weeks

I sat in on my mom's mystery book club yesterday morning so I wasn't around to take pictures. Here we are at 31 weeks, one day late:



My butt looks massive, but it's not quite that big; there's a pile of laundry behind me on the floor. It's that day, I was sorting right before pictures.


See? The delicate wash. Not my bottom. And because I'm sure my mom is appalled that I've posted pictures in my bra on the internet (it's a big pregnancy bra, hardly revealing or flattering):

I love this top. It's backwards in the mirror (try taking a full-length picture of yourself without one) but it says "Glam Moms Rock."

I got it on Etsy from this great shop called Glam Mom NY.

:::

Our Little Chickpea:

Her reproductive system continues to develop this week: clitoris is fully formed and prominent because her labia are still small and do not cover it. Oh my. Her lungs are much more developed though not fully mature. That won't happen for another 8 weeks. Her brain is much more developed too. From my reading, the major activity for the rest of pregnancy seems to be continued maturing of the lungs and brain, and packing on the pounds.

I'm fairly certain she's smaller than the weight given in the books, but that still means a good 3-5 pounds more to go before birth. Those weight numbers are estimates, and there's a wide range that a baby can weigh at birth. I'm still gaining weight at the right pace and my uterus measured at exactly 30 weeks last week. According to my doctor, this is a pretty accurate sign that my baby is also the appropriate size and weight for her. I'm expecting her to be a smallish baby- Ray and I were both small at birth as well as now- I'm 5'3" on a good day and he's 5'6". The men in my family are tall for the most part but I'd be shocked if our chickpea was anything but petite, especially at birth. Our childbirth class instructor told us that a baby of 7 pounds of less is good-sized and average; heavier than that might be called a 'big baby.' If I had to make a prediction, I'd say she'll be between 6 lbs 6 ounces and 7 lbs. Unless she arrives early, then she'll be smaller.

Me:

Disclaimer: I am never complaining here. I have some discomforts but they are all manageable, and I know I could have it much worse. I am very lucky and could deal with a lot more. This is always just what's going on. Sleeping is becoming more difficult, although even when I am awake I feel like I'm in a half-sleep half-wake state for the most part. I can tell when she is poking me in an uncomfortable spot and changing my position usually takes care of it. The major change I've noticed in the past week is increased back pain- by about 4:00pm my back can really hurt and it's hard to stretch or sit in a way that makes it feel better. Ray is sweet and always rubs it if I ask, but I don't too often because I don't want to be too needy. What I'd give for a 30 minute back massage every afternoon! One item I'm going to invest in this week is an exercise ball, the big kind you can sit on. We don't have one, but they are really excellent for eliviating back pain, stretching, and also during labor.

Nursery:

Is looking so very pretty, but it's still not ready. I ended up applying the decal all by myself which I'm super proud of. It's gorgeous and is clearly the focal point in the room. The bookshelf is constructed but not yet anchored to the wall; we'll wait until we're sure of its placement when the glider arrives, which could be anywhere from 2-6 weeks from now.

My mother- and sister-in-law through me a baby shower on Sunday and we received lots of gifts, clothes for the most part. She has a pretty sweet wardrobe, only a few long-sleeve onesies are lacking at this point. I've hung and tucked everything away without washing, which I'll do closer to my due date. I also received my baby carrier, a navy Ergobaby organic carrier as well as the infant insert. Ray thinks I'll be carrying her around everywhere in it, and I think he might be right!

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One last picture to share. I just think this is hilarious- this is what I see when I'm standing and look down:

Cannot see my legs and feet at all. That's my flip-flop poking out on the right but I'm actually looking forward a wee bit to have it in view.

11 September 2010

Little Women

I watched classics when I was little, more than current cartoons. The version of Little Women from 1949 was one of my favorites, and I will have it ready (on Blu-Ray!) for my little girl.

Starring Elizabeth Taylor, June Allyson, Janet Leigh, Margaret O'Brien, Mary Astor, and Peter Lawford. This version took a few liberties with the story, the most notable being the reverse of ages in Beth and Amy. Beth is a year older than Amy, but in this film Beth is portrayed as the youngest.

One of my favorite scenes occurs after the Lawrence party above- the girls are all in bed talking, and Amy is eating the most yummy looking petit fours- which she eventually shares with Beth before affixing the clothespin to her nose. How she managed to remain still all night to keep the clothespin on is something I used to wonder about.

June Allyson as Jo is the perfect image for me. She has a masculinity about her but is also beautiful and very intriguing. Her relationship with Laurie isn't as intimate as in the book but his attraction is very believable in Allyson.

My favorite sister was always Meg because I thought Janet Leigh was really beautiful. Her hair, her voice, her clothes were all lovely to me. A fascination for hoop skirts and Civil War-era fashion was born from watching Little Women. And as the lone girl in a family of boys, a story about four sisters was enchanting.

09 September 2010

30 Weeks

10....weeks....to go!!

I've been waiting to hit this milestone since I made it past the first trimester. Something about hitting the thirties, plus in 7 days I'll be counting down the weeks in single digits.

Our Little Chickpea:
She weighs between 2.5 and 3 pounds. She's packing on the pounds now in sweet baby fat, and her brain is growing, getting more and more of that wrinkly brain texture. Continuing to move more and with greater force throughout the day, all the moms I know say I will miss that feeling when she's born. I can see why- that feeling will go back to being indigestion and gas :). It is kind of like that, only better.
She has a great little heartbeat, strong at 150 beats per minute. My doctor felt pretty sure from a belly exam that she's facing head down. Good girl, stay that way please!

Me:
I've gained 25 pounds now, still on track to gain 35 pounds total which I'm very happy with. At least it's still staying in the belly region. Everyone who says it's all there isn't comparing the size of my thighs and ass to the way they were before! :-) Still have good blood pressure, and my uterus is measuring at exactly 30 weeks.
My right leg has a bit of the restless leg syndrome going on at night- when I lay on my right side it has a hard time settling down, twitching periodically and feeling a little asleep. It's not a problem on the left.
Nursery:
I've decided not to post a picture again until it's ready. Right now it's a little messy with the gifts we've received, and I don't need to remember it that way. :) This morning I ordered blinds for the two windows (same as the ones we have elsewhere in the house). The decal we picked out to go above the crib FINALLY arrived; it's going to be a big project putting it up and we don't have time until next weekend. We attempted to pick up our bookshelf at Ikea last weekend but they were oversold :( but I monitored its status online and it was back in stock today so I picked that up too (with a little help- thank you nice guys at Ikea!) The glider is ordered, should be here in 2-6 weeks. The only major nursery thing we have left is to select and purchase a rug, but I'm waiting on that until I have more of these items are in place.

08 September 2010

No Hero

I'm 30 weeks today, but I'll save the picture posting for tomorrow.
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We attended the first session of our childbirth class last night and it was great- very informative and also enjoyable (our teacher is a woman I've taken prenatal fitness from and she's funny and kooky). It did spark some thoughts in me that may be a bit of a rant, but I'd like to share it with you.
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"You don't need to be a hero and deliver without drugs" is a statement I've heard a few times including last night, in reference to someone who says they would like to try and deliver without the help of an epidural.
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I don't think this woman last night really thought about the implications of that statement. I wasn't angry, but I did find it offensive. It implies that women who choose "natural childbirth" (without drugs) are doing it for stupid, superficial reasons. It suggests they have not put any thought or research into their decision, or that they are stupid and silly for not taking advantage of the convenience and comfort drugs provide.
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I am choosing to have a natural birth if at all possible. I don't have a birth plan, more like birth preferences; I know that if I arrive in labor and circumstances aren't ideal, I do still have options. But natural birth is the right choice for me- women have been giving birth since the beginning of time, several women in my life that I respect have had natural births, and I'm good at tolerating pain with concentration and practice. This is my choice, what is right for me. I am aware that an epidural is a relatively safe way to relieve labor pain, and I am delivering at a fantastic hospital where meds would be properly administered for minimum risk.
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I don't make judgments about women who want epidurals. I think an epidural is right for some people. As safe as they are they do have potential side effects and risks that come with them. No doubt these women have weighed these risks and decided it is still best for them. I don't think them cowardly or lazy for wanting one, so I don't really appreciate their judgment on those wanting to go without one.
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I have put a lot of thought into my decision to try and give birth without drugs. But in this technology obssessed society where anything easier is better, I seem to be in the minority. I don't judge you, so please don't judge me. I'm not trying to be a hero, and I also don't "want a medal" (another one I've heard). I'm making the best decision for me and my baby. It's the last gift I can give her before she leaves my body and starts living on her own, and if I can bring her into the world naturally and without medical intervention, then that is what I will do.

01 September 2010

29 Weeks

Not much to say today that wasn't said yesterday. Bump doesn't look bigger but feels heavier, and the rising scale doesn't lie.

Here- check out that killer linea nigra. It lines up pretty perfectly with the top of my uterus, about an inch and a half above my finger. No stretch marks yet, just this pretty line.