Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Not for the easily nauseated

Let the title be your warning. This post is going to be discussing a gross topic. I am not usually one to point out that men have things a lot easier physically, but this one...? Men of the world should be thanking every lucky star they can find.

The Mucus Plug.

For anyone who has not heard of such a thing or been lucky enough to not only have one, but then lose it, Google it. There are even pictures. It is a nasty name for a nasty slimy thing. This is basically a cervix cork. It is a hunk of snot-like mucus that seals off the cervix so evil things can't get in and hurt the alien cooking inside. It truly is a noble job.

The problem isn't the existence of such a plug. The problem comes in when it is time for said plug to be relieved of its protection duty. For obvious baby exiting reasons, the plug cannot stay there forever. It has to sacrifice itself to allow the precious bundle of joy to enter the world. I told you the plug was noble. This self-sacrifice usually comes near the end of baby cooking time. Some women say their plug takes its sweet time leaving, creating a disgusting slimy ordeal. Others say theirs takes its leave in one fell swoop.

Mine was kind enough to ride off into the toilet bowl sunset in one big glob. Which was nice for cleanliness purposes, but didn't do much for the visual. The only way to describe it, and I am going to describe it, is that it looked like a big gooey slug sitting at the bottom of the bowl. Ooo! Or like an amoeba, but without all the little flange-leg thingys. Either way, not the most appealing thing, but interesting none the less.

The thing about this is, it is just further proof that this kid is in fact going to come out. Fairly soon. The not knowing when he's coming out is driving me nutty. The noble plug doesn't help with predicting either. Once it comes out, it could be days or weeks until Junior makes his grand entrance. So here we sit. At the mercy of a creature that is still working on mastering swallowing.

Dear Mars Candy Company

You are the devil.

Your creation of Dove chocolate, although delicious, is clearly the work of Lucifer. And the packaging? Little bite size pieces? So that people can have just one piece of chocolate as a treat and not have to open a whole bar, right? Riiiiiiight. Then why do you put so many of the little pieces wrapped up like little presents in one bag? You playing on my lack of will power against chocolate and presents is just simply not nice.

Also, what's with putting the most addictive substance on the planet in your chocolate? There comes a point where I can no longer take responsibility for my lack of control. There is undoubtedly crack in your chocolate. Kudos to you for figuring out how to maintain your customer base.

Well played Mars, well played.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Here it is people.

Here is the current state of the belly. I have to say this photo definitely does not showcase the enormity of the knockers, but you get the idea.

And just 'cause I think he's cute, here's one of Trav too!

I think it's safe to say I have perhaps gained some weight in my beefy arms...damn.

We have started the "checks"

I swear the doctor was trying to find my stomach she was so far up there! It is just not right that she could feel his head, with her fingers. Moving on.

She was as baffled as everybody who looks at my stomach about how sideways my stomach is. So she pushed him around some more and was pretty sure that he is head down, but wasn't positive and since I am as far along as I am, she did an ultrasound. Definitely a pleasant surprise. Especially after the whole checking thing. So I got to see him again! It is so different now that he is so much bigger. I could totally tell what I was looking at this time. Everything from his head to his skinny little legs...definitely not his mother's legs.

It is still so bizarre that I have a human growing inside of me. Seriously. How messed up is that? The whole reproduction/pregnancy thing is so far beyond comprehension it's amazing.

Anyway, the ultrasound showed that he is in fact head down and ready to go. The rest of him seems to be perfectly happy seeing how far around my middle he can spread out, but at least he is aimed in the right direction. Based on the width dimensions of my stomach, it is totally possible I am going to have a four foot baby. At least I think it's possible.

Other highlights of the appointment:
Blood pressure is still a bit high. Not any higher than last week, but still "borderline."
My feet could easily be mistaken for those of an ogre. Totally normal for pregnant chicks.
I get dizzy very easily. Also totally normal for pregnant chicks. Travis still thinks it's funny to ask how I can tell. Ha. Ha.
I didn't gain any weight this week. None. Zero. That is the first time that has happened since November.

Monday, June 22, 2009

It's Official

We have reached the end of the available space in my body. Pretty much every time I move it makes the kid move...rearranging vital organs along the way. Which in turn still makes me feel like I am going to vomit. Now the vomit inducing sensation doesn't just happen when I bend over. It also happens when I move my body in any way other than sitting still or standing upright. Yea for being a baby oven!

The only benefit I can see to this current situation is that when I am cooking I can easily get Travis to get the pots or pans I need out of the lower cabinets. But then I remember trying to maneuver my way into underwear earlier that day and the skipping out on bending down for pots and pans doesn't seem so sweet anymore.

Anywho, we have three weeks left if all goes to plan. However, the little beast is fully cooked now so if he decides to make an early entrance, there's no stopping him. We took the tour of the hospital yesterday so at least now we have an idea of where we are going once this whole thing gets underway. It was very weird being in a hospital for something good. The particular hospital I am delivering at has some pretty yucky memories for Travis and I, so we are looking forward to having a happy event to take over. It is a very nice hospital and all the staff we saw or talked to were extremely nice. Hopefully I don't decapitate any of those lovely people mid-contraction.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Creepy dolls

A while back I went shopping for a doll that makes crying sounds in an attempt to get the dog used to such noises. This plan was quickly foiled when I got super creeped out by a shelf full of plastic dolls all making mechanical cooing sounds at me while blinking their eyes. Stephen King has nothing on that Target display.

Luckily, our friend Molly recently acquired just such a doll. She was with me for the horrific Target experience so she pretty much wanted the doll out of her house. Ipso facto, it is now living at my house. It is a Baby Annabel doll and it is pretty realistic. If you leave it on, it will cry and need to be soothed, it will suck on a pacifier, and it will make cooing noises and giggles if it is content.

Last night was the first night we had this doll. For my sanity, we didn't leave it on all night, but we did leave it on for a bit so it would make noise to see what the dog did. At first we were all in the nursery and Travis was holding the doll. Aiden just kept looking at it with her head tilted, like, "Hey, whatcha got there? Can I see?" So Trav let her sniff it while it was making noise. She sniffed it once and then was done. So we put the doll in the crib, still making noise, and walked out of the nursery. She followed us out and didn't look back. Even as the doll continuously made noise. Did I mention this thing makes a lot of noise?

Now, I understand this was just one night. And that the doll doesn't take our attention away from her like this kid is going to...But at least the first encounter with something that makes noise that she isn't allowed to carry around with her went well.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Still getting used to the idea

Did you know a whole lot of women carry the Strep B virus? Me either. Apparently this is not an issue for the host, but if that host is squeezing a child out of its body, the virus can be spread to the baby and then the baby needs antibiotics. No big deal, just necessary information.

How do you know if you carry the Strep B virus you may be wondering? The doctor does a swab to see if you have any of the virus present. Apparently this virus is not like it's sibling Strep A. Strep B does not live in your throat. Strep B likes a more personal home. Therefore the swab is taken from a more personal home. to have a QTip not only in my hooha, but also in my butt. Awesome.

I knew going into this adventure that I was going to learn a new definition of humility. Even knowing this going in doesn't prepare you for things like a double dipping QTip. Can't wait to see what we get to do at the next appointment.

Totally calm and rational.

Well the first impromptu doctor appointment of this baby growing process was this morning. My blood pressure isn't super duper, not horrible, but not great. And I have this weird tingly hot spot on my stomach. And my feet are ridiculously swollen. And I feel like I could puke pretty much at any moment of every day. So my doctor wanted an extra appointment just to check in on things.

Everything has been cruising along so normally, it was kind of shocking to have her say she wanted to see me when I called yesterday about the weird tingly hot spot. It's amazing how quickly one can go from feeling like a giant whale that has a decent handle on things to being a freaked out whale that has no idea what to expect. Now I was told my doctor was not super concerned and that she just wanted to check in with me. But since I have never had her want to check in with me aside from regular appointments, this did not sit well in my brain. Within four minutes, I was certain I was either going to have to have an emergency C-Section this morning or was going to be put on bed rest for the remaining cook time. So what if I felt fine except for this tingly hot spot? The tingly hot spot clearly is indicative of something horrendous that is going to need immediate and extreme measures to be dealt with. Or My body is adjusting to having an alien growing inside of it and weird things happen. Clearly the tingly hot spot was plotting to take over the pregnant belly at a time, and I just happened to be the first victim of its evil plot.

Not shockingly, everything is fine. My blood pressure is a little high, but not throwing up too big of a red flag yet. And, I know it is surprising, but swollen feet and nausea happen to be totally normal for this point in a pregnancy. Basically I just have to pay attention to my body and give my doctor a call if anything like blurry vision or headaches pop up. Ha! Take that tingly hot spot. Your world domination will have to wait for another day.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

I feel pretty. Oh so pretty!

The levels of hotness just keep on coming. My feet and ankles have reached epic proportions. I officially have cankles. Every morning when I get out of bed and put my feet on the floor, I can actually feel the swelling by how my foot sits on the floor. Like not as much surface area of foot is in contact with the floor as used to be. The available movement in my toes is also limited. I feel like I have little water balloons filled with wet sand sticking off the ends of my feet. Apparently my feet and ankles were jealous of the swelling my hands of have been enjoying for the past month and a half.

I also feel as though the weight gain is no longer exclusively in the belly and boob regions. The upper arms and face seem to have joined the fun. Don't let me fool you, the belly and boob regions are e-freaking-normous. They will not be surpassed. They have worked hard to gain the title of largest body parts and they are not going to give up without a fight.

All this size increase has made me very tired. It amazes me how quickly I tire out now. After getting the laundry from the basement and taking it upstairs...time for a nap. Once the lawn is me on the couch. Upon completion of walking the can find me on the futon. This is not very conducive to finishing projects that would really be better if finished before the arrival of our critter. Actually forget the projects, staying awake for a full day is hard enough on its own. Where is this nesting instinct with all its wonderful energy? It's only fair I get to reap that benefit after cooking this kid all this time. Bring it on. I've got stuff to do.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Birthing Class. Sweet.

Saturday we went to our 6&1/2 hour learn how to push a baby out of your body class. Fun fun fun. The first half of the class was informative, knitted uterus and all.

The relaxation session part was definitely relaxing. More so for Travis though as I had to keep nudging him to stop him from falling asleep. In his defense, we did get there without getting any coffee in him. Altough I haven't had any real coffee in way too long so he can suck it. This part included relaxation techniques I have learned in the past, but anytime you get to lay down with a blanket and pillow and have someone talk you through relaxing, it's nice.

We learned about the physiology and stages of childbirth. Things like how the kid has to move through the pelvis to get out. Lots of twists and turns. And that walking can help him wiggle past the bones by moving the pelvis bones around and shimmying him on through. This part included words like "ripening" and "effacement". Those words do not have fun meanings. I guess it is fun as long as you soley think about the end result. That after all the ripening and effacement and pushing and tearing and uncomfortableness there is a baby. But in reality, there is a whole lot to go through before you get to hold a slimy screaming alien.

While being walked through the stages of childbirth, I was a bit surprised that epidural was the last option mentioned and not talked about very much at all. I didn't really ask anyone in the class what they were planning on doing because I think that is a rather personal choice, but everything we talked about was taught as though we do not have pain medication available. One "tip" the teacher gave us was if we were getting to a point of discomfort that we are wanting pain management medication to have the doctor check us and see where we are at because we might be almost done. Umm, yeah. Don't really care how much longer I have. If I don't want to be in pain anymore, I don't want to be in pain anymore. Bring on the drugs doc.

Then there were the videos. We got to see not only one, but two women give birth. I have to say, once you see such an event, there really isn't a need to see it another time. Pretty sure I am not going to forget what I just saw. I understand that it is an incredibly amazing thing to experience. But not via video. I was impressed that the first woman did the whole thing with no drugs. I think she is insane, but impressive. I will not be that woman.

We do not regret going to the class by any means. I can say the oatmeal chocolate chip cookies had something to do with the whole no regrets thing.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

There's no stopping them

My boobs are out of control. Seriously. They have not stopping growing since November. I do not understand how people deal with boobs this size. At least once a day I am mystified about how big they are. I understand if they were always this big, it probably wouldn't be so impressive to me, but still.

According to the weekly pregnancy update Kari receives solely to keep my informed of what is about to happen to me, they are going to continue to grow for about 4 more weeks. And then get even bigger after the kid is born when the milk comes in. Can't wait.

Currently, these knockers start a mere 2 & 1/2" below my collar bone. And when I sit, if I slouch at all, they are resting on my beach ball belly. I am one sexy mama. I am telling you if they keep creeping up my chest I am going to have a boob scarf soon. I guess that's better than a boob skirt, but I think they are going up solely because they have no where else to go.

My stomach and I are not friends anymore.

This may be payback for only having two days of not feeling so great throughout this baby cooking process. I have felt like puking for a solid day and a half. Not positive, but I am guessing this would be because Junior in there is constantly pushing my stomach around to get it out of his way. I shouldn't really complain as I have yet to actually vomit and there are many women that have had it waaaaay worse. If I would have had to deal with this constant state of nausea this whole time, I think I would have given up long ago and moved into my bathroom permanently. Between having to pee 1 & 1/2 teaspoons every 45 minutes and not being sure whether I am going to empty the contents of my stomach, I figure that is a safe place to live. The weird part about it is I go from literally gagging at the thought of putting anything but water in my mouth to being ravenously .2 seconds. And then within 15 minutes of eating, roller coaster stomach returns. This rules.

So my blood pressure was a bit high at my last appointment. Nothing to extreme, but enough to make my doctor comment. If it doesn't get back to normal, I may be put on some sort of bedrest type scenario. I am gonna go ahead and vote no on that. Although based on the current state of my stomach, laying down doesn't sound so bad.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Taking on a mind of his own

I am not so sure this little alien monster living inside of me and I are going to get along for the next 5 weeks. He is getting a bit demanding. Of his personal space at least. He is not shy about letting me know if he feels cramped in there. As if the butt constantly planted in my ribs isn't enough of a reminder that we are running out of room. Now, if I don't sit up as straight as possible, I get kicked. He is also still doing the hanging on trick when I roll over in bed. So when I switch from one side the other, he refuses to come along and he and gravity have a fight, which really makes what abs I have left feel fantastic. And this morning, I bent over in a feeble attempt to dry my foot after taking a shower and he threw a fit. It seriously felt like he did a complete cartwheel, while holding onto my stomach.

Frankly, he is being a bit of a jerk and this behavior will be addressed when he decides to come out.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

5 More Weeks

Yesterday's doctor appointment went well. Tack on another 3.5 pounds to make the grand total 24.5 pounds of weight gain. It is strange and interesting that the weight gain varies so much. 6 pounds in two weeks to 3.5 pounds in two weeks. Makes sense to keep you guessing about that since everything else is so normal and cut and dry.

For the first time, my doctor really pushed the kid around a bit to see where she thinks he is currently setting up camp. Now I have pushed and poked him a bit, but she pretty much grabbed ahold and moved him around. She thinks he is head down and the spot I have thought was his head this whole time, is apparently most likely his back. The part of him jabbing me in the ribs every day all day, she believes to be his butt. He has a bony butt. When she moved him, I could totally feel exactly where he was and I swear I could tell how big he is. The movement made me a little nauseated, and the size made my parts scared.

According to a weekly preggo update, he is supposed to be head down with his head "engaged." Pretty sure there are a select few things I am ok with being engaged with that part of my body. A child's head is not one of them.

All of this head down and engaging and being able to see him move means only one thing...he is coming out soon.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Real quick-like

It is so freakishly visible when this kid moves. My stomach looks like when a cartoon character isn't feeling good. And the animators make the character's stomach go all wobbly and moving around with gurgles. So so so weird.

In Training

I have said before that having a dog is like training for having a kid. It's like parenthood-lite. Last night was no exception.

We had an explosive thunderstorm last night. The lightning and thunder was nothing short of impressive. Aiden does not like lightning and thunder. Like at all. It usually sends her into a fit of pacing and panting until the storm is over. Many times the pacing gives way to sitting on my pillow while panting. Last night there wasn't so much pacing as there was just making sure I was awake to be tormented by the thunderstorm gods with her. Every time I was able to ignore the storm long enough to fall asleep, she would nudge my arm, flip the covers up, or paw at the bed. Pretty much anything to make sure I knew she was scared. Once again, it's a good thing she's cute.

All I could do was scratch her head when she would hold still long enough and try to talk calmly to her to let her know everything was going to be ok. Neither action really made a difference. The only time I got her to calm down, was when I could coax into laying down next to me under the covers. All I could think was that we are going to have a really full bed if this kid gets scared of thunderstorms too! It will be me rearranging half the bed with the dog and the kid so I can try to sleep while protecting everyone from the evils of lightning and thunder...and Trav sawing logs on the other half. Good thing he's cute too.

So hot

So here we are knocking on the door of week 35. I have to say I have never felt less attractive in all my life. There is just no way of feeling attractive when you have a giant belly hangin' off your body and an additional 20 some pounds to deal with. It never ceases to remind me of middle aged man with a giant beer belly. Are you pregnant? Nah...I just had a long weekend with Pabst.

My belly button is also getting shallower and shallower. It has yet to do the turkey thermometer thing where it pops out and pokes through all clothing, but it is losing depth at a rapid rate. At least this way I can make sure it is nice and clean in there. It is rather fascinating to me to do a depth check every couple of days. Just another way to track the Great Belly Expansion '09.

Trav assures me he and the dog think I look great. I think they may be a bit bias. She needs me for a continuous treat supply. He's stuck with me.

There will soon be pictures for you to judge.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Who needs shoes?

I have graduated from basketball to beachball. It seems as soon as I get used to having a big belly hangin' around, it doubles in size. The past two days have been particularly large feeling. Based on the pressure and pains, I believe this kid is going to be completely wrapped around my middle like an inner tube by the time he is cooked enough to come out. It currently feels like he is laying on his side, spanning all the way across my stomach...with some part of him getting freakishly close to my back over on the right side.

I am now at the point that bending over for more than 0.3 seconds actually makes me feel nauseous. I can feel my stomach being squished between the kid and my ribs. This fairly new development makes it very difficult to put on shoes. Especially ones that have to be tied. I am getting pretty good at maneuvering slip-on's with my toes, but tennis shoes are a problem. It particularly sucks because my main mode of exercise is taking the dog for a walk. And because I don't hate my feet, flip flops are not an option for a 45 minute walk. So I end up propping my foot up on a chair with my leg out to the side like a frog so my belly can hang in the middle, but my foot has to come back in so I can reach it to tie the damn shoe. Have I mentioned that being pregnant really brings out the sexy in a lady?

The not bending over without feeling sick was also an issue when trying to set up the pack 'n' play for the first time. My mom and dad were there to help, but they didn't have their glasses. I could read the minuscule print, but the location of the directions was not ideal. The only place there are directions for this contraption is on the inside of the play pen, on the bottom. This required me to make a choice, bend over long enough to read the directions thus being precariously close to vomiting on my child's play pen, hold the currently unstable play pen at eye level, or figure that we are three relatively intelligent adults...who needs to read instructions? A recommendation for all trying to set up a pack 'n' play for the first time: Do not attempt such a feat without reading the instructions in their entirety. The three of us spent a lot of time and effort trying to figure out how to get this thing to stand. Travis came home and joined the circus. After a couple minutes he had the good sense to read the directions. To our surprise, it very easily locked into place and could obviously safely hold a child. Weird.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Weeble Wobble

I almost fell off the toilet at work yesterday. I couldn't decide if this little incident needed to be recorded for all to see, but then I figured why not? Who doesn't like a good bathroom story?

So I am in the bathroom peeing for the 26th time of the day. As usual, very little is actually expelled from my body. That little joke my body likes to play on me just doesn't get old. My bladder is a jerk.

Anyway, I am in the middle of contorting this Humpty Dumpty-type body in an attempt to dry all parts up after doing my business and the seat of the toilet shifts. I can only assume this shift is caused by the change in my less than dainty weight on the seat. The seat moving startled me. Scratch that. Scared the bejeezus out of me. I over corrected and just about launched myself right off the whole damn toilet. I imagine it looked a lot like when you lean back in a chair and all of a sudden it feels like the chair is going to tip over backward. Except my pants were around my knees and my shirt was pulled up over my big ol' white orca belly.

I am not cut out for being pregnant.

Counting Down

The time frame we are working with is less than 50 days. That is as long as this kid doesn't decide to be mean and stay in there longer than he is scheduled. Seriously, less than 50 days. 6 weeks. This is pure insanity.

The closer doom's day gets, the more conflicted I feel. On the one hand, I am really looking forward to not being pregnant anymore. I cannot complain as I have had an extremely easy pregnancy. No morning sickness, no a gargantuan weight gain so far, things like that. The only thing that has sucked a ton was the sciatic nerve pain and that is pretty much gone. But I have to say I am really really looking forward to having my body back to myself again. I think I am pretty good at sharing, but I am ready to be done. And I am ready to see what this kid looks like too. The curiosity is driving me nuts.

The flip side of that is that when I am not pregnant anymore, that means I have a baby. A baby that lives outside my body. And is no longer being taken care of by forces of nature. Because really, aside from not eating or drinking certain things, I haven't really had to do much other than let nature take its course. But once this critter comes out, nature gives up most of the control of the reins. Not sure that is nature's smartest move.

The conflicted feelings seem to be finally surfacing for Travis too. He is still very excited, but that whole, "What the hell did we do?" thought has crept into his brain. The more he has to keep the due date in mind when making plans, the more this thought takes over. We have been invited to multiple really fun things that we cannot do because they are too close before or after I am due. We are missing out on a bus trip to a Brewers' game, he is missing out on a guest bartending shift at a fun bar in Milwaukee, Summerfest is most likely a no go, the deck on the house may have to wait a year. Having to decline invitations for things that we want to do slowly chips away at the excited part. I know once we meet this little guy, those things won't seem so important, but for now they do and it is hard to miss out on them.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Setting the standard for any trailer park.

While at work and out of the house for social engagements or running errands, I have been pretty good about making sure I am wearing size appropriate clothing. However, at home, totally different story. Yesterday I was wearing a non-maternity tank top with gaucho pants. Problem with non-maternity shirts? They are not quite long enough. So I spent the day walking around with my preggo belly sticking out of the bottom of my shirt. Super sexy.

Saturday however, I showcased my classiest outfit yet. I started out laying in the sun reading a book, wearing my maternity swimsuit. The fact that this swimsuit is maternity doesn't really come into play very much. It fit me when we were in Mexico at the beginning of April. End of May? Not such a perfect fit any longer. I realize this is really only two months, but two months of an alien growing inside changes the fit of clothing drastically. Seeing as though my boobs are in a constant state of growth, they no longer fit in the boob portion of the tankini top of this suit. Well, they kinda do. But if I have the seam that is supposed to go under my boobs in place, they are pouring out of the top and I look like Pamela Anderson. And the belly is constantly doing its best to sneak out of the bottom. As I see it, who cares if I am laying on a lounge chair reading in this swimsuit? Not me. This was not the classy portion of the day, however. After reading for a while, I decided I needed to mow the lawn. So, I threw on a pair of cut off sweats and some tennis shoes...and made the brilliant call of sticking with the tankini top. Now, as previously mentioned, this top was not a problem while laying on a lounge chair, very still. Mowing the lawn...with a push not a very still activity. I am fairly certain I offended a young couple taking their kids for a walk. There were boobs and preggo belly all over the place. All I needed to make the whitetrash outfit complete was a beer in a cup holder on the mower and a Marlboro Light hanging out of my mouth.

Whatever, I was comfortable, I got some sun on my back, and the lawn looks fantastic.