April 29, 2011

34 week update

Posted in Pregnancy tagged at 2:40 pm by lifebytheday

How am I feeling?  VERY big and full…like baby boy/girl has expanded to touch every inch of my insides, and is still trying to do gymnastics!

I’m also having a lot more contractions – which apparently aren’t Braxton-Hicks, since B-H contrax are only supposed to last 20-30 seconds, and mine can last anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes.  Fun times.  I’m definitely starting to feel worn out, and even the smallest things (like walking upstairs) have become a LOT of work. 

Oh, and I finally started getting the brown belly line…which combined with the blue veins and red splotches I’m already sporting makes for a very UNsexy rainbow effect on my stomach. 😉

Weight gain – +28 pounds (and gaining fast!)

Cravings – nothing new, besides ice cream at least every other night! 

Upcoming milestones – my baby shower on Sunday, which I am SO ridiculously excited for.  I can’t wait to spend the day with family and friends, and am equally excited to do baby laundry and pack my hospital bag post-shower.

I’m getting so ready to meet this baby.  I guess it would be best if s/he waited until the 37-week (full-term) mark…but seriously, any time after that would be GREAT!

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April 26, 2011

People say the darndest things

Posted in Pregnancy at 8:30 am by lifebytheday

Some of the things people have said to me in the last few weeks:

“Are you eating for two, or three?”

“Nice pregnancy!”  Umm, what?

“You look like you’re ready to have a baby!”  And after I said “…in six more weeks” …”those are going to be a long six weeks!”

LOL!!  I think it is all hysterical…especially now that I kind of agree with them. 😉

April 19, 2011

To bank or not to bank?

Posted in Pregnancy tagged at 5:16 pm by lifebytheday

Mommies (and mommies-to-be) – did you (or are you planning to) bank your baby’s cord blood?

And if yes, which company did you choose?

After everything that we went through to have this baby, and assuming that science will continue to progress, I’m strongly leaning towards banking ours…but definitely with a company that offers a payment plan. 

What else should I be considering?  It’s hard to tell which companies are more closely tied into the scientific research community, and which ones provide the safest banking centers.

All input welcome…thanks!

April 18, 2011

Oh look, there’s the wall!

Posted in Pregnancy at 10:34 am by lifebytheday

And I’ve officially hit it. 

Despite plans for not much…the weekend ended up being pretty rough.  I have felt off since Friday…super exhausted and really uncomfortable.  I also think that what I’ve thought was just the baby moving into an awkward position has actually been Braxton-Hicks contractions all along.  This weekend they got a lot more uncomfortable – and add in the exhaustion and I just felt out of sorts. 

Saturday morning I had a haircut appointment at 8am, which somehow tired me out so much that I had to take a nap as soon as I got home.  Then Saturday night we went to a party at my cousin’s where I barely made it an hour and a half before having to leave and go to bed.  On Sunday, I was so sick of being at home that I pushed through and went out shopping with my mom (which was probably more than I should have done).  Both S and I were in major need of some new clothes – S because he wears them out (yes, he’s my first child 😉 ), and me because I have officially outgrown almost all of my maternity clothes. 

I honestly don’t know what I would have done if I had gotten pregnant with twins – or what all of you twin mommies did! – but I seriously DO NOT FIT into clothes anymore.  I know that my pregnancy has concentrated in my belly (which I appreciate baby, thank you! 😉 ) but that, combined with the fact that I have a small frame and am carrying really low, means that clothes either fit my boobs and shoulders or my belly, but never both. 

My mom and I braved the local Destination Maternity and I literally tried on every article of clothing in the store.  I never thought that I would see the day where I was frustrated by the size and shape of my pregnant body, but I hit that wall yesterday.  Which then made me feel really overwhelmed and emotional…because I really love everything about my body, I just don’t know how to dress it! 

Even the things that were loose and blousy weren’t big enough (!), and when I went up a size, my boobs fell out.  And the thought of buying a bunch of expensive clothes and then having to have them tailored totally sent me over the edge.  I ended up finding a few dresses and tops that sort of worked and I’m hoping that they’ll get me through the next few weeks where I have to be out in public.  Once we hit May, I’ll probably be switching to yoga pants and t-shirts for the rest of my pregnancy.

I honestly never thought that I would reach the point where I felt fat and unattractive, but with all of the crazy hormones running through my body, not fitting into clothes takes on a whole other dimension.  I’m not looking for compliments or reassurances – although they definitely wouldn’t be refused, lol – but I’m just trying to be honest.  I know that all of my weight is in my belly – and I thank God for the fact that that means I have a healthy baby growing big and strong in there – but it’s starting to get a little old.  Seriously, the belly is starting to look a bit obscene, and I still have 7 more weeks to go!

Yikes…I just realized what I wrote!  I know that the next 7 weeks are going to fly by, and I’m going to try and focus on cooking this baby healthy and strong, no matter how big I get – as long as I don’t end up having to go nude! 

Thanks for listening while I shook off my grumpies… 😉

April 14, 2011

Cooking/freezing ideas!

Posted in Food, Life at 6:37 pm by lifebytheday

Need your help friends!

I need some ideas for things that I can cook and freeze ahead of time, but that we’ll actually feel like eating in June!  The thought of turning on the oven is already making me feel hot…but I guess we can’t eat grilled chicken and potato/pasta salad all summer, can we?  😉

April 13, 2011

It’s official…

Posted in Pregnancy tagged at 3:07 pm by lifebytheday

I’m starting to look a bit disfigured.  😉

Seriously though, I’ve been carrying this baby low from the beginning, and it seems like whenever I have a growth spurt, the bottom gets big first and then the top rounds out…last week was definitely a large and low phase, and this week I’m just BIG.  I think the way I’ve been carrying is why I’ve been having trouble bending over/shaving/putting on socks/shoes – because I know plenty of people who can do those things right to the very end – but I end up in serious pain when I attempt to bend over. 

It has gotten so bad lately that I am even having trouble sitting on the toilet to go to the bathroom!  TMI, I know, but I almost have to straddle the toilet to be able to pee now.  Seriously…where am I supposed to put the belly, and what happens when I “drop”??  Yes friends, the future does not look pretty.  😉

And here’s our 32week update:

How am I feeling?  Surprisingly good!  Legs are still about the same, but nothing new to report…which is nice. 🙂  I’ve been having a few crampy twinges low and to the right, but I think it’s just more growing and stretching pains.

Weight gain?  +24 (the same as I weighed at the dr’s office last week)

Cravings/aversions – For the past several weeks, I have needed to have a corn muffin and a tea/iced tea from DD for breakfast EVERY morning.  Even if we have breakfast food in the house…  I usually have a yogurt smoothie while I’m getting ready and then get breakfast #2 on my way to work.  And even better than corn muffins?  ICE CREAM!  Our local, home-made, ice cream stand opened a week and a half ago, and we’ve already been there three times, lol!

Movement – The baby has gotten even more active and wiggly lately and can now reach a few places that I REALLY wish they couldn’t!  Sternum, rib, bladder…and two places very deep and low that make me feel pretty violated, lol…especially when I’m in public or talking to somebody at the time! 😉

Other updates:

  • I bought my first nursing gear this weekend!  Took a trip to Tar.get and got two nursing bras and two tanks.  Can I tell you how weird it was to try on a tank top with holes for your boobs? ;-P
  • I think I jinxed S and I with my last few “my husband is awesome” posts.  We ended up in another stalemate last night re: daycare and me going back to work.  Can’t go into too much detail here, but ugh…we need a mediator for this one.  We have big plans to work through things tonight, so wish us luck!
  • I just started working on our birth preferences doc, and I’m finding it really tricky to find the right tone (balancing firmness with respect)…suggestions welcome!

Upcoming milestones:

  • My baby shower!  It’s still more than 2 weeks away, but I’m so excited to celebrate with friends and family and be “allowed” to start buying and washing baby clothes! 🙂

And a photo, per request!

32 weeks (actually 31w5d here, on my way to exercise class) 😉

April 12, 2011

Reflections on hypnobirthing

Posted in Books, Pregnancy tagged at 4:35 pm by lifebytheday

After getting revitalized by Saturday’s childbirth class, I decided that it was time to get back into reading and researching, so last night I read a Hypnobirthing book (The Mongan Method) that I had borrowed from a friend.  I initially had been really interested in this method, but after reading the book I have realized that it is NOT for me. 

There are a few things that I took away from it that I think will be really valuable – including some relaxation techniques and visualization exercises – but I just can’t get behind the entire program as a whole.  I know that it works for some people so I don’t want to be too judgemental, but it is just waayyyy too fruity for me. 

A big part of the hypnobirthing program is a language adjustment (“uterine surge” vs. “contraction”) which I understand the goal of, but just seemed really fake and forced to me.  Hypnobirthing proponents also do not believe in the idea of pushing and do not acknowledge that labor will include pain and hard work.  Just because you don’t acknowledge something doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist! 

Another big part of the program is to help woman release their fear about labor – which might be important for some people – but as crazy as it sounds, I don’t feel!  I know that it is going to be difficult, but I’m not afraid of the process. 

One thing that I did really like though was the idea of a birth “preferences” document, versus a birth plan.  I think the word preferences better acknowledges the reality of what may happen, and is less likely to alienate the doctors and nursing staff. 

So now I need some help from my readers!  Can you please send me recommendations for good books on natural childbirth that are less “fruity”?  And tell me what kinds of things you are putting in your birth plan/preferences??

April 11, 2011

Ruminations on childbirth class

Posted in Pregnancy tagged at 5:47 pm by lifebytheday

S and I really enjoyed our childbirth class on Saturday, even despite the fact that S got chosen as the husband volunteer who had to demonstrate how the labor beds worked, LOL!

Our biggest takeaway?

We can do this.  After a lot of the things that I had read and watched – even those advocating completely natural childbirth – I didn’t feel 100% comfortable and confident until listening to our nurse teacher (with 30+ years of experience at our hospital).  I now feel completely confident that (a) the hospital, and especially the nurses, will support our desire for a natural birth, and that (b) S and I have the tools and the relationship to get through labor and delivery together.  (However that ends up happening…natural or not.)

As much as S and I were giggling and joking through the breathing exercises, we could tell that they would be really helpful during labor.  And the nurse spent a lot of time going over how engaging the senses – music, photos, smells, etc. – help to block/distract you from the pain…so I’m excited to start pulling together some good vacation photos and iPod playlists.  😉

She also reassured me about my deepest fear…that the tub would be occupied and not available!  LOL, seriously, I’ve been more worried about that than anything else…but I guess that it is way under-utilized and even if it is in use, there’s always the shower (and no one can or will stay in the tub forever).

Most of all though, I really enjoyed the chance to bond with my hard-candy-shell of a husband, and to see him getting excited and engaged in the whole process.  Throughout our fertility struggles and years of pain and procedures, I have realized that S was truly hand-picked for me, and childbirth class was another reminder of that.  He is the only person that can make me laugh when I’m scared, calm me down during stressful situations, and the only person I want near me or touching me when I’m in pain. 

For a long time, I’ve been considering a doula, but I honestly believe that between S and the one-on-one nursing staff, that I’ll have all of the physical and emotional support that I will need.  And that the experience will be more comfortable and intimate for having the focus be on me and my husband.

All in all, class was a great way to step off the pregnancy rollercoaster for a moment and recharge.  S and I have been so preoccupied with the getting ready, that it was nice to take a moment and reconnect with each other and the true goal of this pregnancy.  I know that we don’t know what will happen and what we’ll need at the time…but it was a great opportunity to learn and bond and refocus.  Once again, I’ve been reminded what a great team we are, and I’m so excited about the next phase in our life!

April 10, 2011

Bedroom photos

Posted in Remodeling at 9:27 pm by lifebytheday

Before

 

During

 

After!

April 9, 2011

My husband is amazing.

Posted in Life, Remodeling tagged at 5:59 am by lifebytheday

Not only did he move forward with renovating our bedroom (by himself), but he actually accomplished the entire thing in ONE WEEK, while working full time and one man down!

Here’s the timeline:

  • Saturday – I packed up the bedroom and we moved into the guest room.  S and his brother moved all of the furniture from our bedroom into the nursery and demo’d the entire room down to the studs.  My father re-did some of the electrical and they started putting up insulation.
  • Sunday – Electrical and insulation finished.  S called a handyman friend of his who miraculously was free to help us for the week and they got the drywall up and the first coat of plaster on the walls.
  • Monday – Sanding and second coat of plaster; baseboards and crown molding started.
  • Tuesday – Baseboards and crown finished; window sills and trim started.  Walls primed.
  • Wednesday – Window sills and trim finished; first coat of paint on the walls.
  • Thursday – Ceiling and trim painted.
  • Friday – Second coat of paint on walls and trim.
  • Saturday (today) – Carpet will be installed (while we’re at childbirth class!) – the only thing that S isn’t doing by himself.  And we’ll be moving back into our room tonight!!

Part of the reason S moved things along so quickly is just so it wouldn’t be hanging over his head for too long, but the main reason can be summarized in two words…FULL BED.

We’ve been sleeping in the full bed in our guest room all week – which you wouldn’t think was that much smaller than our queen – but add in my belly and pregnancy pillow, and the dog and cat who think that the guest room bed is their personal throne and sleeping arrangements have been very tight.  LOL 😛 

Poor S is also a few inches too long for a full and had to sleep on the inside of the bed so that I could get up and down to go to the bathroom during the night…so he would have done ANYTHING to get us back in our bed by the end of this weekend.

I’ll post pictures later on tonight!

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