Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Kindness and Spunk

The Pilot and I named Megatron for my grandma (No, she was not an 80s cartoon villian...Megatron's legal name is a variation of her name).  I've always been really close with my mom's mom so there wasn't much question about honoring her through our baby's name.

She was actually the reason we told our families we were pregnant with Megatron when we did.  Right before last Christmas, my grandma's health started to decline.  My mom (a hospice nurse) helped set her up with part-time hospice care to help her and my grandpa look after grandma.  We weren't planning to tell our families we were expecting for another couple of weeks but I wanted to make sure my grandma knew she was expecting another great-grandchild just in case something happened.  I told my grandparents on Christmas Day and they were both so excited!  I honestly think my grandparents both enjoy being grandparents and great-grandparents better than being parents!  All the grandkids are their reward for not killing their own kids! :)

I've never considered myself a religious person but I do believe that everything happens for a reason.  Of course the reasons for things aren't always obvious, which can be frustrating when trying to make sense of difficult and challenging situations.  Other than medical reasons, I felt like I was trying to wrap my head around the reason Megatron came early.  And then the reason became clear.

For that first week of Megatron's life, we were in the hospital and then had some follow up appointments and lab work for him.  That entire week, my grandpa checked in a couple times a day with my mom to check on all of us.  My mom had called him when Megatron was born and shared his name and had him tell grandma that his middle name was for her.  He mentioned that he would bring my grandma down to our house so they could meet Megatron once we were ready.  That first week though, we weren't quite ready for visitors between me not feeling well and Megatron's appointments.

On Monday, when Megatron was one week old, I got a call from my mom.  She mentioned that my grandma wasn't doing well and suggested we come to see her rather than my grandpa bringing grandma to us (we live about 30 minutes away).  It would be our first non-medical outing with Megatron.  So on Tuesday morning we packed him up and headed to introduce Megatron to his great grandparents.

My grandma was pretty confused and I don't think she knew who we were but she kept touching Megatron's foot.  She commented on how big his "suit" was (he was wearing a onesie with monkeys on it, which even though was a newborn size, he was swimming in it!) and that he was a "skinny baby."   It was difficult for me to see my grandma in that condition and it took all I had to keep it together.  I wanted to remember it as a sweet moment and not a sad one.  And I'm so glad that I was able to keep it together while we were in the room with my grandma.

Forty-eight hours later, my grandma passed away.  My mom has shared that many of her hospice patients are often waiting on someone to come see them before they pass.  It almost always happens that way.  I have no doubt in my mind that my grandma stayed with us long enough to meet Megatron.  I also believe that this was part of the reason Megatron needed to arrive early.  I am so thankful that not only did my grandma get to meet her great grandson but she also knew that he was named for her.  I've always hoped she knew just how special she was to me but having her know that we named our son for her meant the world to me.  While I knew that Megatron would never get to know my grandma the way I did, it breaks my heart that I didn't get the chance to talk to my grandma more about him.  She didn't get the chance to know him at all.  But I will always cherish the fact that they did meet.  I didn't think that she would remember but the morning after our visit, she told her hospice nurse that she met a baby the day before.  So she did remember.  She may not have realized who that baby was, but she did remember.

The Pilot was there and took some pictures.  We will be able to share the pictures and story with Megatron about that visit.  I'll also have to share all of the wonderful memories I have of my grandma with him.  She was kind and funny with a whole lot of spunk.  I hope that I'll be able to pass along those traits to him.  If he ends up only being half has kind as my grandma was, then he will be better off than most!

To say it has been an emotional two weeks is an understatement.  Between the trauma of my delivery and Megatron's early arrival, the hormones associated with having just had a baby, and the loss of my beloved grandma, it's been a very difficult time.  I just hope that things settle down for a little while so we can all focus on healing.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A Letter to The Pilot: Year 2

Dear Pilot,

Two years ago today I wrote you a letter.  I've referred to that day as the "first day of my life" and we even used a song to commemorate that.    It was our wedding day.  And while there have been countless special moments we've shared since that day, it remains one of my favorites simply because it was the day we made it official to be partners in crime until the end.  And man have we had fun in the last two years!

I wrote you another letter on this day last year exclaiming that I loved you even more a year after our wedding than I did on our wedding day.  And here we are a year later.  I never imagined it possible but another year into our marriage, my love for you has grown even more.  Of course there have been ups and downs, but with you by my side, I feel like we can conquer anything.

This anniversary is extra exciting as we have gone from a family of two to a family of three.  Before I met you, I was fairly certain I didn't want a child but now, I cannot imagine our lives any differently.  You've given me something I didn't even know I wanted.  Seeing you as not just a husband but a dad has been amazing.  I knew you would be a great dad but seeing you in action has me awestruck.  Thank you for taking such great care of me and our son!

Happy 2nd Anniversary.  I love you.

The Wife

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Megatron's Grand Entrance

Settle in.  This is going to be a long one!

It’s taken some time to process the last two weeks of our lives.  I don’t know that I have fully grasped it all or if I ever will.  I think I will be forever overwhelmed by the day we became parents.

After my doctor gave me the HELLP syndrome diagnosis, she calmly told us that it was time to have a baby.  It feels like a lifetime ago that she said that but I know I cried.  It wasn’t supposed to happen this way!  The Pilot and my mom were both in the room, which was a comfort.  She explained that while it was still early, it really was the best thing to protect both me and the baby.  I knew in my heart that it was the right decision but my head was so conflicted.  

We tried to keep calm despite the stress.  Obviously we grew up in the 80s....
My doctor checked and much to everyone’s surprise, I was already 3 centimeters dilated.  While I could have easily walked around at 3 cm for the next 5 weeks, it sort of made me feel like it was all meant to be; that our baby was supposed to arrive early and I instantly felt better about what was happening.

I was admitted to the labor and delivery floor of the hospital late on Sunday, July 14, 2013.  An IV was started and they gave me magnesium sulfate for the HELLP syndrome (my understanding is that it is a muscle relaxer that would help protect me from having a seizure) and Pitocin to induce labor.  As they got the IV started, my doctor checked on me one more time before leaving for the night.  I was told I would need a catheter but I didn’t understand why at the time so that was when I asked my doctor if I’d be able to walk around.  When she told me no, I cried for the second time that night.

I was hoping for a natural birth, with as little medical intervention as necessary.  I’m also a realist and knew that this was something I had never experienced.  I didn’t naively go into childbirth thinking that I could handle it without pain medication.  The Pilot and I researched all of the options, read up on ways to naturally deal with pain but also learned about the different medicinal options I would have once in the hospital.  I wanted to go in with an open mind.  I would try a natural birth, but if that wasn’t in the cards, then I would let it go and accept it.  As long as the outcome was a healthy baby, then the “how” he got here wouldn’t matter.

So when the doctor told me that due to the magnesium sulfate I was on, I would be in bed from then until 24 hours after delivery, I was naturally upset.  I was a fall risk (since it is a muscle relaxer), had to be continuously monitored because my blood pressure was going up, plus they were keeping a close watch on the baby’s vitals also.  Part of dealing with childbirth naturally is walking around.  It’s bouncing on a stability ball.  It’s doing everything except lying on your back in a hospital bed.   The Pilot was the one who had to step in to explain to the doctor and nurses in the room why I was upset.  I’m sure I was sitting there crying with a look of panic on my face.   Again, this was not how I envisioned my baby’s arrival.  But I had to roll with it. 

I asked that I at least be told when I was approaching the “point of no return” when it came to making a decision about an epidural.  I really wanted to labor as long as possible without any pain medication.  The only reason I was even still considering an epidural-free delivery at this point was that I had a break in the chest pain.  They had given me something high strength for acid reflux that seemed to ease the pain in my chest a little.  My doctor then hit me with the next blow.  Because of the HELLP Syndrome, my platelet count was low.  My liver wasn’t functioning correctly.  Both were working against me.  You cannot receive an epidural if your platelets are too low.  Basically, if I waited on an epidural, there would be a chance my platelets would be too low and it wouldn’t be an option any more.  The decision would be made for me.  No epidural.  My doctor also warned that if my platelets dropped and I ended up needing a c-section, I would have to go under general anesthesia.  Meaning I wouldn’t be awake for the birth of my baby.  That was NOT an option for me.

They let me think that over for a little while.  And in that short time, the pain in my chest returned worse than ever.  It felt like I couldn’t breathe it hurt so badly.  I’m not kidding when I say I thought my heart was just going to stop.  

Around 2:30 am on Monday, July 15, the resident OB broke my water.  Thirty minutes later I opted for the epidural.  Not for labor pain but for the chest pain.  The resident assured me that an epidural was still an option and that it would help with the chest pain.  I knew I had a long night of labor ahead of me plus I would need the energy to actually deliver.  So in went the epidural.  The chest pain was gone within 15 minutes.  And I was able to rest.  Clearly that was the best decision given the circumstances.  

I tried to sleep but my head was racing, thinking of all the things that hadn’t been done yet at home.  I was supposed to have a couple more weeks to prepare!  While I had a couple baby showers and we had a lot of the basics, there were still things we needed.  I also hadn’t fully prepped the people who would be filling in for me at work.  The Pilot was sleeping on a couch in my hospital room and I didn’t want to wake him up(he hadn’t gotten much sleep recently either), so I finally asked the nurse for a piece of paper and a pen.  It was probably 4 am.  I told her I needed to make a list or I’d be awake all night.  So I made a list…and then got a little sleep.

The resident checked my progress a couple times during the early morning hours, and I was moving right along.  Faster than I thought!  I kind of panicked when they said I was 8 centimeters.  It was about this same time that I started to feel the contractions.  The epidural was wearing off and the contractions were getting stronger.  Part of me was glad that I was feeling something so at least I would know when to push.  And of course the other part of me wanted more drugs because the pain was returning!  

Not too long after that my doctor returned.  I was 9 centimeters.  Say what? The pain was definitely increasing to the point I couldn’t talk through the contractions.  I had to close my eyes, hold The Pilot’s hand and focus.  I didn’t need to be told when the contractions were coming but at some point the nurse or doctor started talking me through each one and gave me the option to do some practice pushes.  That’s all it took to get to the full 10 centimeters.  It was business time.

The Pilot stood right next to my head and counted to ten, three times for each contraction.  In between the contractions I was able to lay back and relax a little (after the doctor reminded me to relax!).  It seemed like time stood still yet moved so fast at the same time.  I felt like I was only pushing for a couple minutes when my doctor told me to open my eyes; that the baby was almost there.  I wanted to tell her I wasn’t ready.  I needed more time! But I opened my eyes and in that instant, she placed my baby boy on my stomach.  I didn’t even know just how “almost there” I was!  I knew the pain went through the roof but I didn’t realize that it was because the baby was well on his way out.  It was like an out of body experience.  I was there but not really.  Luckily instinct kicked in and I grabbed my baby and pulled him closer to me.  I started crying and I can remember feeling overwhelmed and in love…yet also like I was watching a TV show.  It was like it was happening to someone else.  I later found out that that feeling was most likely the result of the magnesium.  The longer I was on it, the foggier my brain became.

My doctor had warned us before I started pushing that it might be a little scary when the NICU team arrived in the room.  She explained there would probably be 5-6 people all working to prepare for the baby’s arrival but that it was standard for the early babies.  To tell you the truth, I barely noticed when they arrived.  I was already focused on getting through each contraction and pushing that I didn’t notice just how many people were in the room.  The Pilot commented later that it was a little scary.
I was only able to hold my baby for a minute before the NICU team took him and started working on him in the room.  Little man came out kicking and screaming but because he was early, he needed a little help.  From my understanding, they gave him some oxygen, but not much and it wasn’t under pressure.    I was pretty fuzzy during this time, partially because of the magnesium and partially because I was still in shock of what had happened and how fast it happened.  I had only been in labor for 5 hours.  I had only been pushing for 20 minutes.  

The Pilot hadn’t left my side and it was my doctor who told him to go meet his baby.  He walked over and stayed with the baby while my doctor tended to me.   A few minutes later, they brought Megatron over to me, a little more cleaned up, with a hat on and wrapped in a blanket.  I was able to look at him and kiss him just for a moment before they took him to the NICU.  As they left the room, it felt like my heart was on the outside of my body and was being rolled away from me.  In my fuzzy, exhausted state, I suddenly became a mom and the worrying started.  And I know it won’t end until I leave this Earth.

I had to consult with the The Pilot about what happened after that.  It all got really fuzzy.  While my symptoms from the HELLP Syndrome continued to go away after delivery, the magnesium sulfate made it very difficult to stay alert.  I do remember commenting to my doctor that labor took less time than it takes me to do a full marathon so I was having a hard time deciding which was more challenging. I also threw out there that because he was early, I’d have an extra month to prepare for what I’m eyeing as my “comeback” race.  Trust me though, this was all said as a joke.  I wasn’t seriously thinking about my “comeback” while my doctor was doing some repair work.  Humor is how I deal with stress.

Once the NICU team was ready to roll, they had The Pilot follow them so he would know where they were taking him.  I guess my parents were pacing right outside my room and were able to see Megatron as the rolled him down the hall.  I don’t remember how long The Pilot was gone but he came back and told me that he looked great and that he would be able to go back to check on him once they got Megatron all set up in the NICU.
I’ve been through some pretty rough challenges in my life but the 24 hours after Megatron’s arrival was the most difficult thing I have ever experienced.  Because I wasn’t able to get out of bed, I wasn’t able to see Megatron.  Since he was in the NICU, they couldn’t bring him to me and I couldn’t go to him.  It was excruciating.  I took comfort in knowing that The Pilot was able to go down to check on him as often as he wanted, but I wanted to see my baby.  Again, this wasn’t what I had envisioned for my baby’s first day!  The Pilot took lots of pictures and video and would come back to my room to share them with me.  I cried every single time.  My family and The Pilot’s parents all came and all took turns visiting the NICU with The Pilot (Only 2 people were allowed in at a time and one had to be a parent).  I was jealous that everyone else was getting to see the baby and I couldn’t. 

It also didn’t help that I felt pretty awful.  The longer I was on the magnesium, the more fuzzy my brain seemed to be.  People were coming and going and I couldn’t keep my eyes open.  I wanted so badly to look at the pictures on The Pilot’s camera over and over but my eyes wouldn’t stay open. 
Twenty four hours after delivery, I was taken off the magnesium and was released from the labor and delivery floor to the post-partum floor.  Before taking me to my room though, I was finally able to see Megatron.  I can’t even begin to describe what that moment felt like.  I had waited for what felt like an eternity to see him.  It was also scary because he was in an isolette, hooked up to all kinds of wires and had blue lights shining on him because he had developed jaundice.  He was doing really well, it just looked worse than it was.  Even knowing that though, I wasn’t prepared for seeing him like that.
Our little glow worm
I think this picture says everything I was feeling in that moment.

Over the next two days in the hospital, both Megatron and I regained some strength.  The evening of his second day, he was released from the NICU to the normal nursery, which was a huge relief for us.  He was still under the lights for his jaundice but other than that, he wasn’t hooked up to anything.  We were able to keep him in our room on our third day, which became the first day we spent together as a family.  It was looking like I would be released later that night, and we began to worry that we would have to leave him behind in the hospital.  The hospital staff continued to monitor Megatron’s jaundice, and eventually decided that he could be released as well.
We gathered our belongings (which seemed to multiply while we were in the hospital) and The Pilot got a head start out to the car while Megatron and I were loaded into a giant plastic cart.  It was part cart and part wheelchair.  We hitched a ride and a patient aid rolled us down to the front entrance where The Pilot was waiting.  On the ride from the post-partum floor down to the lobby, lots of people stared, some asked how old he was and there were a few “congrats.”  We were quite the spectacle.  And the entire time I was thinking “these strangers better not try to touch my baby!”  Ahhh yes, the paranoia begins!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Week 35

 Week 35
How far along? 35 weeks
Maternity clothes?  I went to the wedding of a childhood friend on Saturday and the occasion required a dress.  I found a simple black maternity dress at a consignment shop for under $15.  Score! The pictures proved that black is slimming.  :)
Have you started to show?  I'm starting to feel like a freak show.  Strangers are now commenting.  I've had one "you look like you are about to pop" and a lady who was chatting with me through the changing room wall in the spa locker room.  I was there to get a prenatal massage (best baby shower gift ever!) and as I was getting undressed I hear a voice through the wall, "when are you due?"  Umm...why are you talking to me while I'm naked??
Symptoms:  During the wedding on Saturday I noticed some pain building in my chest, just below my heart.  I figured it was bad acid reflux, which I've had trouble with more and more in the past couple weeks.  We left the wedding early and I tried to sleep it off.  By morning I was feeling better and we ran to Babies R Us to try to pick up the last few things from our registry.  While we were there the pain returned.  I laid down when we got home but it seemed to be getting worse.  I called my OB's after hours line.  She suggested I try maalox but only gave me an hour to wait for it to kick in.  If not, it was going to mean another trip to the hospital.  And after the whole kidney stone ordeal, I really did not want to go back to the hospital.

But just over an hour later, that's where I found myself.  And I obviously was not enjoying my stay.

Going to the hospital ended up being a very smart decision.  And I'm so thankful that my doctor was onto something and only gave me an hour to see if the maalox would work.  Turns out it wasn't just heartburn.  After an EKG ruled out a heart attack (at least I wasn't crazy in thinking something was wrong with my heart.  I doubt they would have done an EKG just for funsies), an ultrasound ruled out gallstones.  When the pain in my chest radiated up into my right shoulder and arm and my blood pressure started to climb, the doctors started throwing around terms like "a form of pre-eclampsia" and "only cure is to deliver."  That's when my OB showed up.  Late on a Sunday night.  My mom (who was at the hospital with us and is a nurse) was the one to realize that things were getting serious if my own doctor decided she needed to see me and not just leave it to the senior resident.  I was realizing that the night was taking a strange turn when there was nothing they could give for the pain.  I was begging for the drugs they had given me during the kidney stone.  I didn't understand why I couldn't have anything until my doctor arrived.  My doctor is amazing and her calm demeanor kept me calm as she explained the diagnosis of HELLP Syndrome.  While she never said it, after Googling it later, we realized it is a life threatening diagnosis if not caught in time.   Meanwhile, Megatron was as happy as could be.  I was taking a serious turn for the worse yet he was just hanging out with good vitals and movement.  So I knew my doctor wasn't taking my condition lightly when she suggested that in order to keep him happy and healthy and to prevent me from getting sicker, I needed to deliver and I needed to deliver soon, even though it was 5 weeks too soon.

You could have scraped my jaw off the floor.  After going in for what I though was acute heart burn and to be told it was time to deliver a baby, I was stunned.  That was not even on my radar.  Ever since the ultrasound at 20 weeks revealed he was a pretty big baby, I've been worried about delivering a "monster baby."  And for the first time, I was incredibly thankful for how big he already was.  Delivering 5 weeks early, while still really early, was the best decision for my health and his. At that point, the risk to me staying pregnant far outweighed the risks of having a pre-term baby.

And so on Monday, July 15 at 8:01 am, The Pilot and I became a family of three with the addition of Megatron.
6 pounds, 20 inches

I'm still processing all that happened and not quite ready to dive into the rest of that story but I will share more about Megatron's arrival into the world soon. For know though, we are both doing much better!

As for Megatron's name?  No, that isn't his legal name.  Sorry but we won't be sharing that on the blog.  We didn't want him to Google his name later in life and come across all of his mother's confessions about parenthood.  Very much like the reasons I don't share The Pilot's name on the blog.  We didn't want to reveal too much about our family on the internet.  I mean, someone might want to run for office one day and we don't need any incriminating evidence floating around. ;)

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Week 34

Week 34
Rather than looking at the camera, I was looking at The Pilot who was most likely making faces at me trying to get me to laugh.  It usually works...and then we end up with some strange out takes
How far along? 34 weeks
Maternity clothes?  I'm really determined to not have to buy anymore work appropriate pants...even though things are getting a little snug.  I might have to wear the same 2 outfits for the last couple weeks of my pregnancy.... Another item I really don't want to have to buy more of?  Bras.  Unfortunately that isn't something one can "make do" with wearing the wrong size.  Sigh.
Have you started to show?  Yes, I ate a watermelon seed and this happened to me!
Symptoms: My hands and feet are starting to get a little puffy.  It's probably not noticeable to most people (unless they see my ring digging into my finger).  I have really narrow feet and skinny fingers so the fact that they have swollen a little is really only noticeable to me (though The Pilot could see it a little in my ankles the other day).

Baby boy's head is still down and has been putting pressure on my pelvic bone.  It's like he's pushing his head against the bone and pushing out.  Not painful, but certainly not comfortable either.  He's also had his feet up in my ribs/lungs a few times.  I usually get winded (even when sitting) or I can't even lean forward because he seems to be wedged.
Activity:  Does playing Uno with The Pilot and a cat count as activity?
Yeah, that happened.  We've had lots of hot, stormy weather here lately.  Which seems to have zapped the little energy I have left.  It was getting "late" (8 pm...because that's my style now) but I was waiting on some laundry to finish up before bed.  We didn't want to get involved in watching TV so we opted for a game instead.  We joked that we should pack the cards in my hospital bag in case we get bored (you know, in between contractions...riiiiight).  The hospital staff would probably make fun of us for being so old school.  We don't have smartphones so we resort to good ol' fashioned fun! :)  We did have fun...and obviously it was such a wild time that the cat needed to take a nap...right there.
Best moment this week:  I had my 34 week check up on Monday and got to hear his heartbeat again.  It's amazing how loud and strong it sounds!  It's starts as this whirling sound in the early scans and now its more of a thumping sound. I also got a pedicure with my mom on Monday.  It was wonderful!  Especially since it's really challenging to paint my own toes now.  Hopefully this will last until delivery day! 
Miss anything?  Pelotonia is a big cycling fundraiser in Ohio and is next month.  That means the cyclists are out in full force around town training for the ride.  And seeing the hoards of cyclists is making me jealous.  I pull into the garage and see my bike hanging on the wall and I swear it looks sad that it hasn't been ridden since last fall.  I'm also missing seeing my training friends each week.  They threw me a baby shower this week and it was perfect timing.  I was really missing their smiles and encouragement! 
Movement: I recently noticed I can tickle the little man.  My belly itched (yeah, that fun has returned) and I was lightly running my fingernails over my belly when little man sort of rolled.  I didn't think much of it until my friend mentioned she would do that to her baby when he was still cooking and he'd do the same thing.  And she said that when she runs her fingers on his back now (he's almost 4), he does the same rolling movement he did while he was still on the inside.  So I tried again.  I ran my fingers across my belly where I was pretty certain his back was and sure enough, he rolled and squirmed.  It's mind-blowing to me to think that everything I do, he experiences..and vice versa (as he must be stretching in this very moment and is wedged in between by rib cage and my pelvic bone because I can barely reach the keyboard).

He also got really sluggish the other day.  Enough for me to call the doctor's office.  As uncomfortable as some of his kicking can be, when there was an absence of kicking, my anxiety level went through the roof.  The nurse told me to wait it out another hour or two, that he was probably sleeping.  Sure enough, later in the day he started dancing a little jig on my bladder. and has been pretty active ever since.  I've never been so relieved to almost pee my pants.   When I was in the doctor's office a couple days later she reassured me that I did the right thing by one, noticing something was different and two, calling the office even though I was paranoid that I was being a nervous nelly.  She told me to just keep doing my fetal kick counts twice a day and call when something is off.  Sure I've done everything I can to keep myself and little guy healthy but I think that "parent worrying about their kid for the rest of their lives" thing kicked into full gear that day.
Food cravings:  A pound of strawberries was put away in the last 24 hours...  There was also some Pop Tart consumption.  I've also eaten a lot more salad in the last week.  The Pilot planted lettuce in his garden and it went bonkers!  We have tons and tons of lettuce.  It's pretty nice to be able to walk out the back door to grab some!
Gender:  Mister Man!  I think our friends and family are getting more and more excited to meet him but mostly because they want to know what his name is!  I think it's driving some of them a little nuts that we are keeping the name a secret until he arrives.
Looking forward to:  Seeing my feet while standing.  Being comfortable.  I'm basically uncomfortable 24/7 at this point.  I can't seem to get comfortable in bed, in a chair, standing, anywhere.  Basically I'm just looking forward to meeting our little man.  I've also been told that while I won't sleep much in those first few weeks/months, the sleep I do get will be much more comfortable that what I've got going on now.  I'm hanging onto that right now.
Not looking forward to:  I can't possibly get any more uncomfortable....riiight??  As I walked out the door yesterday for work I told The Pilot that I have no idea how women with more than one kid manage to look after kids while they are pregnant.  I feel like I'm barely able to get myself up and out the door some days!  And the people I know who have carried multiples, holy smokes I have all the respect in the world for you (not that I didn't before, I just have a whole new respect now!).
Milestones:  I'm about to start my weekly doctor visits already!  It's crazy how fast this pregnancy has gone so far.  I won't lie, the last couple weeks have gone really slowly.  It fits the saying that the "days are long but the years are short."  I'm uncomfortable and each day seems longer and longer but the weeks keep ticking by so quickly.

Baby boy was also serenaded again by his mama.  Vanilla Ice's Ice Ice Baby is a classic and little man must learn about music sampling...and DETROIT AVENUE. (C'mon, anyone between the ages of 25 and 40 probably just sang along with that.  Admit it.)

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Crazy Dreams/Nightmares

They say pregnancy can make women have some crazy dreams/nightmares and that's a symptom I have not escaped.  In the 1st trimester, it was mostly nightmares.  Like the kind that you can't seem to wake yourself up from and then when you finally do, you aren't sure if the nightmare was real.  There were several nights I woke up from a nightmare and reached for The Pilot to make sure I was back in reality.  Of course he wasn't always there which was distressing.

The second trimester was pretty quiet in terms of weird dreams and nightmares but now as I get closer to the end of the third trimester, the crazy dreams have started.  Luckily these are more weird than disturbing.  Well....I would consider this one disturbing but I didn't wake up confused and out of touch with reality.

I was going about my business when I realized the world had been taken over by zombies.  This is even more strange because the whole zombie craze is lost on me.  I hate those kinds of movies.  Anyways, I was running from zombies when I came across a survivor who was also running and needed my help.  It was Justin Bieber.  This is the distubring part.  I really don't like that punk.  I should have let the zombies eat him.  Being the nice person that I am though,  I kept trying to help him but as we were running he kept falling down and asking me to carry him.  You little weenie.

I then realized that gravity was "working in reverse" (WTF?) and I kept telling him that we could "skydive" if we just jumped high enough in the air and then the wind would carry us away to safety.  Except he couldn't jump because he hurt his ankle when he kept falling down.  Probably because his pants were sagging to his knees and he was wearing sneakers that weren't tied.  Again, what a punk.

And then I woke up.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Week 33

Week 33

How far along? 33 weeks
Maternity clothes?  Yeay for hand-me-downs!  The Pilot's cousin (in law) passed along a few things from her pregnancy last year.  It's been nice to have a few more comfy pieces to pull into the rotation!
Have you started to show?  I'm feeling rather....round.
Symptoms:  I've never been all that graceful but my clumsiness has hit an all time high lately.  I drop things.  I bump into things.  I lose my balance and kind of wobble but, like a weeble, I don't fall down.  Thank goodness because I'd be stuck on the floor for sure.  Why I continue to sit on the floor from time to time is beyond me.  It's SO difficult to get back up.  But the cats love them some head scratches and they are close to the floor.  I need to work on getting them to come to my level instead.  I also sat on the floor while putting together a baby seat...and then sat there and stared at the completed baby seat pondering how I was going to get off the floor.
Activity:  There was the hissy fit inducing walk around the block over the weekend and then some "swimming" on Monday.  There were also a million errands to run over the weekend that left me overheated and exhausted when I returned.  I'm not exaggerating.  I came home, dropped my bags on the floor, pulled my shoes and socks off, put my feet on the air conditioning vent and then dozed off on the couch for a little while. 
Best moment this week:  Getting a hug from The Pilot after being apart for 5 days.  That was a loooong stretch but should be the last long trip before the baby arrives.  He requested to only work 1- and 2-day trips from now until my due date.  Fingers crossed I go into labor when he's home!
Miss anything?  Still missing my bike a lot.  My old body....I've never been so thankful for my formerly doughy self.  I'll never take it for granted again...hopefully I will at least regain that!  The other night I commented to The Pilot that I look forward to being able to just flop into bed and be automatically comfortable...or laying on my stomach.  Arranging a million pillows to support my numerous achy body parts is a chore.  So is rolling over with said pillows.  And getting up out of the bed requires some feats of strength.
Movement:  I thought for sure the movements would have slowed down by now (the doctor warned me about this since he's big and running out of space) but not so much.  His kicks and jabs are as strong as ever.  And now, when he rolls over, my entire belly moves.  Still the most bizarre thing I have ever felt or seen.  And it's still just as amusing.  I almost always start laughing when I look down and see something rolling around.  If The Pilot also witnesses it?  I find this even more hysterical.  I can't explain it. 
Food cravings:  I had some itty bitty strawberries...the last of the season from the local farmer's market.  Boo.  I randomly wanted Velveeta salsa dip the other day but luckily we don't typically keep processed cheese in the house.  We'll see if I can keep that craving at bay.  I did succumb to a Pop Tart craving....a couple times over.  Darn it!  I've also eaten a pound of carrots this week.  Hopefully I don't turn orange.
Gender:  Each week I get more and more excited to meet the little man.  The waiting recently made me think of being a kid and going to my grandparents' house on Christmas Eve.  There were always presents under the tree from my grandparents as well as from my aunts and uncles but we couldn't open anything until after dinner.  I used to be under foot in the kitchen while my grandma made dinner and would whine that I "couldn't waaaaait to open presents".  Grandma would just smile at me and say "well, you are just going to haaaave to."  This is like Christmas times ten.
Looking forward to:  Being able to tie my own shoes.  I actually had The Pilot tie my shoes for me the other day.  I can still do's just uncomfortable and slow.  We needed to leave and he was standing there.  Such a good sport.  I also randomly thought about giving our baby zerberts again.  :)  And of course there is that "new baby" smell.  I'm not talking about the "baby just filled his diaper" smell but the"oh my gosh the world hasn't tainted you yet, fresh and clean" smell. 
Not looking forward to:  I feel like it is a matter of time before I get stuck in bed like a turtle on its back.  Luckily The Pilot will be home more nights from now until little man arrives but there are still a few nights I'll be on my own...someone check on me if you haven't heard from me in a day or two.  :P
Milestones: Teaching baby boy about the great works of U2?  Via singing to him in the car while stuck in traffic.  He's been exposed to many of U2's greatest hits (in my opinion) in the last week.  Hopefully he appreciates his parents' taste in music when he is forced to listen once outside of my body.  If not, we may disown him.  I kid.  Sort of. ;)

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Swimming....or floating

I stuffed the baby belly into a swim suit last night and went swimming!  Now it wasn't exactly swimming laps and my heart rate wasn't up so I wouldn't necessarily call it a workout.  But, I was using all my limbs and I wasn't sitting on the couch eating Pop Tarts (like I kind of wanted to do) so I would call it a success.

My friend Lisa joined me over at my parents' house (it's their pool).  While I was jealous of the fact that she RAN to my parents' house while I had to drive (I only live about 3 miles from my parents and Lisa is just over 2 miles door to door), it was nice to catch up with her.  We floated around in the pool for about 40 minutes while chatting.  The sun was already low so the pool was shaded (yeay for this pale girl!) and the water was warm.  It was like sitting in a bathtub that I actually fit in. :)  It was WONDERFUL to feel weightless for a little while.  It took the pressure of all my achy joints.  Plus, baby boy must have enjoyed it too because either he was asleep or just chilling.  Usually he has a dance party on my internal organs all evening but for the short time in the pool, he was still.  Such a relief for me!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Around the Block

After a really long week for both me and The Pilot (his last long trip before the baby arrives was made longer after bad weather and broken airplanes stranded him away from home a night longer than expected), we couldn't wait for the weekend.

On Friday evening, when I got home from work we grabbed some dinner and then were surprised at how nice the weather was after dinner.  It's been stupid hot here lately (just made worse by my pregnant state) so taking a walk after dinner has been out of the question (for me at least).  We decided to take a walk around the block. 

I really wanted to go to a group training on Saturday morning (I miss my training buddies!!) despite the doctor telling me to avoid activities that aggravated the hip pain.  Basically, anytime I am in the same position for more than a couple minutes, my hip pain is aggrivated.  So why bother avoiding walks?  I figured I'd go to training, walk 2 miles and go home and rest.  I decided the walk around the block could be a "warm up."  Make sure all the parts still work or something like that...

Not so much.  That walk around the block was a workout. The block we opted to go around is just over 1/2 mile.  And about 1/4 mile into the walk, I could have sat on the curb to take a break.  I was winded.  I was hot.  My fingers felt like they were swelling (they weren't really).  We could SEE our house when I got a cramp in my belly.  Blah.  I waddled the rest of the way as The Pilot practically tripped over his feet from walking so slowly. 

As soon as we got home, I laid down on my left side (that is the place to be when you are prego) on the couch.  The cramp went away immediately. I could have had a meltdown right then and there to be honest.  I'm a marathoner dammit.  A 1/2 mile walk at a snail's pace just left me exhausted and winded.   Blah.

I know that my body is using all of its resources to grow a human but it's hard to accept that this is my current reality.  Even though I know it is only temporary, it's still tough when you are normally a really active person.  I know it will all be worth it but for now, it's just frustrating.