Turns out the second is a little different than the first…

So, we’re in the home stretch with Baby Drogon and this is my second blog post.  Woops!  It’s not that I love you any less my little fetus, it’s that I have your older toddler brother to take care of while incubating you.  In case you’re wondering what we’re having, please enjoy this short video.  It’s a…

So yeah, things are slightly different after the first.  I was never super crazy about my pregnancy diet (generally stayed away from raw meats and binge drinking) and didn’t really flip out over every little thing my body was doing at the time the first time around.  But I guess I’m even more laid back this time.  “Were those contractions the other night?  Or did I just have to poop??”  “One slice of cold pepperoni isn’t going to kill the baby, right?”  “They’re allowed to do it in Europe!”  (This last one has basically been my motto this pregnancy.)  I obviously blogged more before and took baby bump pictures almost every week.  This, as I have already stated, is my second blog post and I’ve taken 1 baby bump picture this entire time.  Regardless of all that, we are super excited to be welcoming Baby Drogon into our little family.

Quick update on our unique family.  My husband finally, actually lives with us!  Crazy, I know!  We bought the cutest freaking house last March and shortly after moving in, J found a job here in Richmond, and there you have it.  A nuclear family was born.  And as weird as it is to live with your husband and baby daddy, it has been very helpful.  I LOVE our new house, but it’s only 3 bedrooms and 1.5 baths, so we will outgrow it eventually if we have more children (I’ve wanted 5 at one time!) and I refuse to live in a house with teenagers and only 1 full bathroom.  Hopefully once it’s time to leave though, we’ll at least be able to stay in our neighborhood.

So, back to the pregnancy.  With Baby Groot, I had a feeling he was pretty content in mommy’s belly, and turns out I was right.  Not even the pitocin could get that guy out of there.  I feel like Baby Drogon is all sorts of ready to meet the world and he may kick his way out if he has to.  This baby does not leave me alone!  It’s also been a whole lot harder to get around.  Everything feels so achy.  I’ve got some weird joint issues.  I wake up in the middle of the night for no reason.  Also, turns out I got the betus again.  Huge bummer.  Found out I had it before Christmas.  Talk about bad timing.  My brother-in-law’s uncle brought the most amazing chocolate chip cookies to Christmas dinner.  They were huge and perfect.  I allowed myself half a cookie.  And a half piece of pie.  And a little bit a cake.  And maybe the rest of the cookie later that night.  And my sugars that night were still under what my limit is supposed to be!  Take that betes!  Even with all that, I’ve also pretty much gained no weight in the last 4 weeks (I lost 2 lbs over Christmas and gained it back I think) so that’s kind of cool.  I told my co-workers that are currently in a weight loss challenge that the joyless way to lose weight was to cut out carbs and sweets.  Seems to work.

I took the test to see if I had GD (gestational diabetes) right before the weekend of our company holiday party and a friend’s birthday celebration.  I had this grand plan about how I was going to basically eat no carbs or sugars the whole week before the test, then indulge all weekend because I knew I wouldn’t get the results back till the following week.  I told J my plan and he responds with “the point isn’t to try to pass the test, it’s to regulate it if you have it.”  Ugh, boys.  What do they know.

So now, I have to take insulin again.  And this time instead of using the handy-dandy insulin pen (it’s this pen looking thing that is already full of insulin, and you just turn a dial to dispense how much you need, and you just replace the little needle tip after each use), I am using a vial and syringes because for some reason, insurance wouldn’t cover the pen this go round.  And for someone with needle anxiety, it’s really a whole production which makes the process that much more agonizing.  I had J give me my first injection again.  It took about 30-40min, mainly of me saying stuff like “OK, I’m ready…WAIT!  NO I’M NOT!” or “OK…Wait!  I didn’t mean ‘OK’ as in ‘Im ready,’ I meant ‘OK, I’m getting ready'” or “why is your hand getting close to me?  I didn’t say I was ready.”  I eventually figured out how to do it myself because turns out it’s even worse when I try to get someone else to do it on my command.

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As far as the cerclage goes, seems like that has been all fine.  I should be getting it taken out soon.  I have this weird fear that the baby is just going to fall out as soon as the doc removes it though.  Hope that doesn’t happen.  I thought we were done with the high risk guys after the cerclage was put in, but turns out I had something called marginal cord insertion, so they wanted to keep seeing me to monitor it.  Basically, the cord is attached to the side of the placenta instead of the middle, like normal.  Sounds like not a big deal, but I guess one of the complications that could happen is the baby might not be getting all the nutrients it could be getting, or something.  But so far, so good.  Just another weirdo thing to add to our Adventures in Pregnancy.

Now, because of the GD, I have to see the high risk guys as well as my OB every week and have an ultrasound and stress monitoring with the high risk guys.  Which really isn’t all that bad because the stress monitoring is pretty much 20 minutes of relaxing “me time.”  One of the high risk doctors also told me that because of the GD, we may deliver at 39 weeks instead of 40.

So, I feel like we’re still a little unprepared for this new baby.  The house is kind of a mess still, none of the baby’s stuff has been put away and organized, but he does have a place to sleep and some diapers, so at least we have that going for us.  My parents are supposed to come down to help once baby is born, but they’ll be out of the country right up till the due date and who knows when this baby will actually come, and what the heck are we going to do with Baby Groot while we’re in the hospital??  Well, he is pretty independent and the dog is pretty responsible, so maybe they can just take care of each other for the time being…

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Ready for round number 2…

Hey everyone!  I know I’ve been gone for quite awhile, and I’m sure everyone has missed my updates on Baby Groot.  Well, I’m here to say that Groot is doing GREAT!  He’s toddling now, loves to dance, talk (in his own language of course), eat, and sleep…and he’s going to be a big brother!  That’s right, J and I are expecting Baby #2 (whom we are affectionately calling “Drogon”) in February.  Honestly, I was hoping for a Drogon due date in January to ensure that I would be able to play volleyball this spring, but what can you do.

Before I get into any specifics on how round #2 is going, let me fill you in a little more on Baby Groot’s adventures.  Here are some pics:

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Here is Baby Groot when he was learning how to army crawl.  He could only really go backwards at the time.  I left him in the living room while I went to the kitchen for a second, and when I got back, he was crying because he had almost completely scooted under the couch.  I did my parental duty and took a picture before I rescued him, of course.

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This is us at Awesome-Con back in May with Captain Jack Harkness (John Barrowman)!  Baby Groot is the TARDIS.  Very proud nerd-mom moment.

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Family vacation to Cape Cod, here we are on Nantucket in front of a windmill.

Needless to say, I love that kid more than I could have ever imagined loving another human being!  (Even if he runs away from me when I pick him up from daycare or tries to hold onto daddy a little longer when daddy is trying to give him to me 😦 )The older he gets, the more personality he gets, and the cooler he gets.  But the older he gets, the more I want to smack him a little sometimes.  I mean, really?  If you didn’t want the sippy cup or the food, you could simply leave it on the tray and not eat instead of throw it everywhere.  Or, instead of screaming as loud as you can at the restaurant to show your excitement for food, maybe clap and smile or something.  (I actually love when he screams in excitement, but it can get a little embarrassing depending on where we are out in public.)

He’s in a throwing phase right now, which me and J are trying to figure out a way to hone in this skill to something cool, like maybe “Baby that can throw a spiral 50 yards.” (Stay tuned for a viral video.)

He currently loves Gilmore Girls and Law and Order: SVU.  Well, he loves the beginning credits.  Anytime either of those beginning credits and song comes on the TV, he’ll stop whatever it is he’s doing and just stare until it’s over.  It’s kind of amazing really because neither of us taught him to love those songs or anything.

He seems to be doing well in daycare still (he started a new one in June) and we’re just in awe of how much the little guy is growing.

So, now a little about Baby Drogon.  He/she is about 18 weeks along.  So far so good.  I had a prophylactic cerclage (you remember, the structural cervical support I needed done with Baby Groot…funny name though, right??) put in a couple weeks ago.  Nothing was wrong this time, it was a JIC thing.  Actually, when we first talked to the specialist this time, I had decided to wait and see and not just get the thing put in.  I mean, why do something that involves a GIANT needle in your spine if you don’t NEED to??  But then we talked to the OB and she was all “weeellllllll, I’m not telling you what to do, buuuuuut, there’s a chance if you do the ‘wait and see’ approach, if something does happen, it might be too late to do the rescue cerclage” as in, the baby might already be trying to drop out and you can’t just push that sucker back in.  So, I decided to suck it up and just do it.

It’s weird, I knew exactly what to expect this time, which I’m not sure if that made it better or worse.  I cried like a baby again both times they tried to put the IV in my arm (my blood vessels were basically like “no.” the first time), and of course again when they did the spinal block.  God bless the sweet nurses that were trying to calm me down, but when they kept asking me about my dog and talked about their’s while the anesthesiologist was cleaning my back and getting ready to stab me, all I could think was “please stop talking and let me suffer in silence.”

I asked if I could take headphones in this time and they said I could, or they could play music over speakers in  the OR.  So, I asked them to play the Ben Folds Pandora station.  I’m glad they did that because I think it calmed me a little.  Also, it was pretty freaking awesome when it played Still from supersunnyspeedgraphic and at the end of the song, we got over a minute of Ben just singing “’cause bitches can’t hang with the streets.”

So, everything went well and since my cervix was OK this time and not about to disappear, they said I’m allowed to lift things and run and whatever other fun things active people like to do.  Awesome because I don’t have to worry about carrying Baby Groot or bags of dog food, but now I can’t use it as an excuse to make J do everything 🙂

Our next appointment is next week for our 20 week scan, the “big deal” scan from what I understand.  We’ll make sure he’s got all his limbs and organs and things.  And I think we’re going to find out the gender this time, which is exciting.  I LOVED not knowing Baby Groot’s gender, but for preparedness this time, I think we’re going to find out.

Stay tuned…

A Chronicle of our stay in the hospital

We checked into the hospital early Monday morning and checked out Saturday afternoon- a slightly longer stay than expected.  And here’s how it went…

DAY 1

The recovery room was significantly smaller than the L&D room.  But, there was a bench seat in front of the window that was basically the size of a twin bed, so J had somewhere to sleep.  And we didn’t have too many visitors, so size was never a huge issue.

Little guy and I were both pretty exhausted his first day of life.  We slept a lot.  I was still nauseous from surgery anesthetics (typical for me).  And it sucked too because as bad as I wanted my Jersey Mikes club supreme (something I had been craving for 9 months), I knew my stomach wouldn’t be able to handle it.  I had already gotten sick that morning after attempting to eat some fruit.  My first non-hospital meal was actually chicken nuggets and a cheeseburger from McDonalds.  A little anti-climatic for a first meal, but I enjoyed it.  A couple friends came to visit, as well as my parents.

Nurses were in our room every few hours to check our vitals and give me and baby antibiotics. (and me pain killers!)  His little baby IV was actually kind of cute.  What wasn’t cute was watching them poke his foot to check his sugars.  It looked so painful, but he never flinched.  That’s my boy 😉

I had decided to at least attempt to nurse my baby, so a lactation consultant came in at some point during the day to help out.  I remember her basically smashing his face into my boob at one point while he was crying and she said “I’m sorry, I know it looks like I’m being rough on him and I know it’s especially hard for a new mom to see!” and I just remember thinking “ummm, you’re the one that knows what you’re doing, do what you gotta do.”

Later in the day I finally managed to get out of bed.  It was tough and a little scary, but I did it.  The nurse helped me out and helped me to the bathroom.  That first pee was basically like that scene in Austin Powers where Austin peed for the first time after thawing.

As far as nighttime went, if I remember correctly, baby stayed in the nursery most of the night.  It was still hard for me to get around, so they just wheeled little guy in when it was time to eat.  The nurses encourage the baby to sleep in the room with mom and dad, but say it is perfectly OK to put them in the nursery so mom and dad can sleep.  We chose sleep.

DAY 2 AND 3

These 2 days were basically the same.  Although, on Day 2 I FINALLY got my Jersey Mike’s club supreme! (Mike’s Way, of course.)  I finally got a shower, walked around the lobby a little.  Watched A LOT of Law and Order SVU.  J got us Sugar Shack donuts.  I ate some cake.  (BTW, they checked my sugar a couple times with normal results, so it was assumed the betes had left the building.)  Cuddled with baby.  Family came to visit.  It was a good couple days.

One night we had baby in the room with us.  We were both asleep when baby started crying.  And there was J, right next to him, snoring away.  It was frustrating because it was still hard for me to get out of bed and lift him up.  I tried throwing stuff at J with no results, so I managed to get out of bed and take care of it myself.  Little did I know that most nights would be like this.

DAY 4

The day we went home.  This day was definitely bittersweet for me.  Yes, I was ready to go home (J more so than me I think…probably so he could sleep in a real bed) but I was going to miss having all these nice, thoughtful nurses taking care of us.  It’s hard to explain.  I wasn’t necessarily scared of taking care of a newborn on my own, I think I was more scared of being alone with a newborn on my own.

I slept as much as I could that morning.  I believe they cut his frenulum that morning.  It’s that piece of skin that attaches your tongue to your mouth and his went almost to the very tip of his tongue.  I was having a little trouble with the nursing and they thought this might be a reason why, so they cut it.  My mom said this is pretty common.  She said back in the day she would just cut it with her finger.  (Did I mention my mom is a retired pediatrician?  If not, that would sound a little weird I think.  Well, she was a pediatrician.)

It was July 4th.  We cleared the baby cart of all it’s supplies (as every parent has instructed us we should do).  I felt a little bad about it, but then the nurse asked us if there was anything we wanted extra of to take home with us.  I asked for more of those fabulous disposable mesh underwears.  And some other things.  She said they used to make you a take home bag, but stopped doing that some time ago for some reason.  I nursed baby one more time and we got ready to go.  The nurse wheeled me and baby out while J wheeled all our stuff out on a cart.  The ride home wasn’t as surreal as a lot of people had made it out to be.  He looked so tiny in his carrier.  He cried a lot, but finally quieted down.  We made it home, safe and sound.  My family was still there, which was nice.  I really liked having company around and wasn’t ready to be alone yet.  I still missed those nurses though.  I’m sure baby did too.

And now began the real journey…

Baby Groot is coming…eventually

So, it is slowly becoming more real that this baby is actually coming.  We will soon have a tiny, living, crying, breathing thing that we get to name, bring home with us, and keep alive.  So crazy!

Because of the diabetes, I’ve been getting ultrasounds done every week since 32 weeks or something ridiculous.  I don’t think this is normal procedure.  If the next pregnancy is all easy and stuff with no cervical problems and no betes and no ultrasounds every week, I’m probably going to worry because we’re NOT doing ultrasounds every week!  You can never win, right??  Well, yesterday was my 38 week appointment and my gagillionth ultrasound.  During the ultrasounds, they try to record the baby breathing, moving it’s hands/wrists, and they measure fluids around the baby.  Yesterday they couldn’t catch the baby breathing and so they wanted me to come back in the morning and try again.  This really didn’t worry me at all because I could feel little guy moving around and it had hiccups earlier in the day, but when I texted my husband that they didn’t see it breathing (he couldn’t make the appointment and was at work), he Googled it and assured me everything was fine 🙂  I thought that was sweet!  So, I went in this morning and right away the tech saw Groot’s diaphragm a-movin.  Go Groot!  Then the doctor starts throwing the word “inducing” around.  Apparently when you have gestational diabetes, they like you to deliver around 39 weeks, you know, big babies and all.  So, she mentions a couple dates which are NOT VERY FAR AWAY AT ALL!!! Once she mentioned dates, it all started becoming very real.  This baby was coming and nothing is stopping it!  I want to meet him/her right now AND want him/her to stay in there awhile longer while we prepare at the same time (cleaning and organizing a bit more, cleaning out the fridge and freezer for all the food I hear is about to come, organizing my desk at work better and wrapping up projects there and whatnot…btw, how does one know when to leave an away message on their work phone when you don’t even know exactly when the baby is coming??).  It’s weird.  But I suppose inducing will help relieve me of other fears I have had about going into labor.  I may have mentioned this before, but seriously, I have a fear I won’t know if I’m actually going into labor.  Was the a contraction?  Should I go to the hospital now??  Did my water break or was it just really hot outside and that’s why my undies are damp???  I mean, Baby Groot could decide to come before inducing, so who knows.

So, in less than 2 weeks the world will meet Baby Groot…

How to maternity without buying maternity

Now, maybe it’s just my sometimes stingy nature (or my “fear of commitment” as one co-worker put it) but I hate the idea of purchasing [most] maternity clothes.  It seems silly to me to buy stuff you’re only going to be able to wear for a certain amount of time.  That being said, I’ve come to embrace maternity pants and shorts.  I haven’t been able to figure out a way to still wear regular pants (unless you use one of those belly band things, which work), so they come in handy.  Around 20+ weeks I finally gave in and bought my first pair of maternity pants and it was as if this whole new world had opened up to me!  Comfortable pants!!  AND they can totally turn into comfortable yet stylish eating pants during the holidays.

So, now for the non-maternity part of this post. Here are a few items I have found work really well while pregnant!

1.  Items that were just a little too big in the first place…

20150607_234721 Now, this isn’t a revolutionary idea or anything.  I just remembered I had a pair of shorts that were always just a little bit big and grabbed a medium sized t-shirt (instead of my normal small) and tada!  9 months pregnant in an outfit I can wear 0 months pregnant.  Not the most flattering outfit in the world, but it works.

2.  Jersey material and babydoll/peasant style shirts

20150607_235050 Jersey material is the most amazingly comfortable material and works perfectly with a giant belly.  I love my jersey skirt when I’m not pregnant, but it’s just as comfortable when I am!  The shirt is pretty self-explanatory.  Some of my favorite shirts to wear to work are those loose fitting cotton blouses and they work perfectly over a pregnant belly.

3.  Body-con dress

20150607_235340 It’s funny, I would have never thought of buying or wearing a body-con dress not pregnant, just not my style and I’m a little self-conscious about all the clingyness.  But turns out it looks really cute on a prego!  And I am more likely to wear this dress after the pregnancy as well now.  Funny how pregnancy has seemed to have instilled body confidence 🙂

4.  Maxi dress

20150607_235640 It’s long.  It’s stretchy.  It’s perfect for a pregnant you.  I’m not sure how I’m going to wear it while not pregnant though.  Maxi dresses normally discriminate against the vertically challenge, but the material shortens slightly when trying to cover a basketball in your torso.

5.  T-shirt dress and belt

20150608_000009 Just a t-shirt dress would work, but it’s not very shapely.  While comfy, you’d probably just look like a walking circus tent.  Add a belt and viola!  Cute, comfy, shapely dress.

6.  Tube dress

2015-06-09 23.16.20  I’m only 8 months pregnant in this picture (I’m 9 months in all the others) but the idea should still work.  A tube dress (wait…is that what they’re even called?  The top is like a tube top so it kind of makes sense…), the ones that are elastic/stretchy at the top and a bit more flowy on the bottom.  I have several dresses like this that I’ve always worn in the summer a lot that have worked really well over the giant bump.

I was wearing babydoll style dresses early on, which looked cute, but as my belly got bigger, the dress got shorter and eventually it got too short for my modest self (unless I wore leggings or something underneath).

So there it is, my thrifty yet girly post.

Pregnancy update and cerclage removal

So, I woke up this morning slightly terrified.  Today was the day they were removing the cerclage.  Before i get into that though, let me update on a few other little pregnancy things…

About 2 weeks ago (35ish weeks along) it was as if I all of a sudden became pregnant.  I started  to have to pee more frequently, I started to gain a pound or 2 (there was a month there where I actually lost a pound), my feet swelled up like marshmallows (it was gross and like memory foam – if you pushed on the skin, it would just stay indented for a minute or so), my leg started to give out on my randomly while walking (doctor said it was maybe sciatica, but I didn’t have any sharp pains), I basically had (and still don’t have) no grip in my right or left hands due to carpal tunnel or something.  It was weird, but still not horrible.  But then last week, after updating my endocrinologist on my blood sugar levels, and letting her know my OB’s concerns with my fasting levels, she decided to put me on insulin.  Have I mentioned how much I hate needles???  The first night I had to take it, my husband was here and so I made him give me my first injection.  It took a good 20 minutes before I would even let him near me!  I leaned against my bed grabbing a hunk of skin and fat while he knelt down in front of me and would ask “are you ready?” to which I would reply “NO!  Give me a second!!!” and I would deep breathe for a minute and defensively ask why his hand with the needle was getting closer to my stomach.  The doc said shots only in the stomach, which sucks.  It’s supposed to be injected into your fat, and I by no means am saying I’m not fat, but the fat gets thinned out a bit when you’re stomach is the size of a small watermelon.  So, relaxing enough to grab some nice flabby skin and fat get kind of hard.  I’ve since been able to stab myself though (once at night and once in the morning) with only about 5 minutes of deep breathing before the injection.  Just a few more weeks and no more needles but ALL the cake, cookies, pie, and pasta.

So, back to the cerclage.  We go to the office for our appointment.  First the ultrasound (when you have gestational diabetes, you apparently have to get ultrasounds every week to make sure you don’t have a giant baby, or something like that).  Little guy (and I mean “guy” in that non-gender kind of way) is measuring at 6lbs 2ozs, give or take a pound.  I think that’s how much I weighed when I was born!  Then we meet with the doc.  Turns out general anesthesia is unneeded for cerclage removal 😦  At least my husband was in the room this time, unlike when I had it put in.  Being able to hold/cut off all circulation in his hand during the ordeal really helped a lot.  Because it hurt.  A lot.  I read on one of those baby message boards other womens’ experiences with getting them removed.  Some said it was painful.  Some said they just felt some tugging but wasn’t particularly painful (bitches), most said they didn’t deliver till 39 or 40+ weeks, and one lady said that an hour or so after hers was removed, she was fully dilated.  Ummmm, wha?!?!  Luckily, that hasn’t happened.  I’m currently sitting at my desk at work, baby still where he/she should be.  But afterwords, as I was laying on the table trying to relax and recover, I look at my husband and say “I don’t think I can have this baby.”  Seriously.  That was bad and all that happened was a string was removed from my hoo-ha.  I guess an epidural is in my future.

So, now it’s kind of weird knowing the reinforcement it out.  In my mind, it’s like nothing is holding the baby in anymore and he/she can come at any time now!  But I suppose the reality is that my cervix got a little stronger with the cerclage in place so it should be ok.  Basically they removed the reinforcing steel, but there’s still unreinforced concrete there.  Which is good because  I’d rather have Baby Groot cook just a little longer while we finish preparing for him/her (and so we can watch Jurassic World in the theaters this weekend still.)

Am I having a baby now?? Part 2.

So, the hubs and I went to the second half of our childbirth class last weekend.  I didn’t realize childbirth class had this stigma to it until I read a Scary Mommy (the blog site) article on a hypno-birthing childbrith class and all the comments were moms saying how they didn’t need childbirth class because they figured they’d just know what to do because women have been having babies for years, or that they didn’t need a class because they were just going to get drugs anyway, or they took a class but didn’t use anything they were taught, or they didn’t want to give the hospital anymore money.  Now, from what I understand, hypno-birthing does seem a little “hippie.”  Basically, you hypnotize yourself into not feeling much pain, I think??  And from what she said in the article, it sounded very “hippie.”  But the class we took I thought was great.  I’m one of those people that needs to know stuff ahead of time so I can try to prepare myself for what I need to do, or else anxiety takes over and I’m a nervous wreck.  I understand the whole process isn’t exactly predictable.  That’s not what I’m going for here.  I’m not a control freak or anything that needs everything a certain way, I just like knowing what I need to know ahead of time.  Like when I make phone calls at work about stuff I’m not exactly sure what I’m talking about (like soundwalls or a specific type of bearing).  I rehearse in my head a couple hundred times what I’m going to say before making the call, then I go about my business.  I don’t know what the person on the other end will say, but I can usually wing it from there.  Same thing with giving birth I think.  Yes, we did learn the breathing techniques and all that “hippie” stuff, but we also learned all the drugs you can take and what will be offered, we learned that we should call our doctor before we leave for the hospital so they know we’re there (who the heck would think of that?!), we learned when we should go to the hospital, we learned which entrance of the hospital to come in, we learned that you get moved to a second room once you deliver your baby, so you should pack two hospital bags (one for before the baby comes and one for after), we learned you should pre-register with the hospital….so much stuff we learned!  And I feel better about it now, sort of.