Home with baby

Turns out caring for a baby is hard.  And not for the reasons you probably think I’m going to say.  Yes, there are a lot of diapers, crying, sleepless nights.  Yes, caring for another human being is a huge responsibility.  Yes, it might have been especially hard for me because after the second week, my husband wasn’t there half the week.  He didn’t just leave for work early and come home late.  Since he works 2 hours away, he had to leave us Tuesday morning to Thursday night (and he hated it just as much as we did).  I expected all these things though.  I already knew babies were hard work.  And I already anticipated my husband not being able to be with us every night.  What I did not anticipate was the emotional toll this baby would have on me. It’s really hard to have something depend on you 100%.  Taking care of my baby made me feel like I was losing a little bit of myself.  Losing my identity.  I was no longer wife, daughter, engineer.  I was only “mom” and I didn’t know how to handle it.  I was also nursing and that was horrible.  Sometimes little guy would need to be nursed for up to 2 hours, which gets tough when they’re supposed to eat every 2-3 hours.  And I’m pretty sure he wasn’t getting enough to eat a lot of the times.  Breastfeeding is especially hard for a numbers person like me I think.  I want to know exactly how much baby is eating and there’s just no way to know that when you’re breastfeeding.  Unless you exclusively pump, which I thought about, but stubbornly decided to nurse and only pump when I needed to.  The nursing, being alone for 3 days a week straight, it all started to take its toll.

I loved when friends came to visit, but would also be very anxious about his feeding schedule at the same time.  Is baby going to want to eat when my friend gets here?  And how long is he going to want to eat if he does?  Will my friend care if I feed my baby while they’re here??  Adult interaction was key to survival during my maternity leave.  That, and just being able to get out of the house.  I would strap baby to me in his carrier and go for a walk around the neighborhood with the dog.  I think all three of us appreciated it.

My other escape was TV.  Television has always been an escape for me.  Maybe why I love it so much.  In one hour I can travel to far away planets with The Doctor, pretend I’m high society with the gang from Gossip Girl, fight demons with Sam and Dean, help take care of the Gallagher kids and yell at Fiona’s bad decisions on Shameless.  I did all those things while on maternity leave and I think it kept me sane.  Not trying to brag or anything, but I made it through 5 seasons of Shameless, all 121 episodes of Gossip Girl, 3 seasons of Suits, and 2 seasons of Supernatural in 8 weeks.

When baby was a week old, the family ventured to Costco.  When baby was 2 weeks old, I decided it was time for him to meet my coworkers, so I took him into my office to meet some people.  When baby was a month old, we traveled 12 hours to New Hampshire for a family reunion.  Nothing was keeping mama and baby from leaving the house.  Like I mentioned above, it was needed for survival.  Dad had a conference in Las Vegas to go to when we got back from New Hampshire.  He was gone for 6 days straight.  6 days!!!  It was a little tough, all that time alone with baby.  Before I met J, I had considered having a baby on my own, just because being a mom was something I wanted so bad. I wouldn’t have been anytime soon, but it was something I was seriously starting to consider because I was almost 30 without even a boyfriend.  Thank the good Lord J came around!  I can’t even imagine doing this all by myself.

Baby is almost 3 months now.  Feedings are so much quicker.  I’ve been back at work for almost a month and feeling more normal because of it.  The first 3 weeks of work, my Manang (see my Mother’s Day post) stayed with me and helped.  She was a Godsend, to say the least.  Not only did she care for baby, she deep cleaned the house from top to bottom!  And I didn’t even ask her to!  It was weird coming home and the t-shirt I slept in that I just threw on the floor that morning was no longer on the floor!  Then I started to stress out, the thought of taking care of a crying baby, AND getting lunches and dinners together, as well as cleaning and sterilizing pump parts and bottles, all by my lonesome, made me cry some nights.  Manang was so good at tending to baby while I took care of everything else.  But, the first week without Manang is now passed and we survived.  An unintended side effect to parenting alone is that I somehow became productive and organized.  And I now eat dinner before 9pm and sleep before midnight.  Weird!

Baby seems to like daycare, and let’s be honest, he’s doing way more in daycare than he would be if he was home with me.  We would probably just watch TV all day.  And now that he doesn’t watch any during the day anymore, I don’t feel so bad plopping him in front of it at night for a little bit.  It’s our bonding time 🙂  Call me a bad mom, but I know it’s just the lights he’s interested in.  The first daycare drop-off wasn’t the traumatic experience I’ve heard many talk about (traumatic for mom, not baby.)  I felt a little guilty for a second, like I was supposed to have some sort of break down, but I realized that just because I didn’t cry doesn’t mean I love him any less.  I love my little guy.  I mean, how can I not – he’s the cutest baby in the history of babies.

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I’m pretty sure he’s like the smartest and strongest also.

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…

It only took 45 hours…

Go figure my kid would be 2 days late.  We went in Monday morning at 6am to be induced and Baby Groot didn’t actually arrive till 3am Wednesday morning.  I told you all he was lazy and content.  And yes, you read that right, Baby Groot is a HE!  So, here’s how the 45 hours before our baby boy arrived went…

I guess with inductions, a lot of times the women come in the night before and have something applied to their cervix to help soften and prepare it for the baby to come through.  Since we had the cervical issues, my doc didn’t think I would need to do that.  We arrived at the hospital at 6am and they showed us straight to our room.  I had a hard time deciding what to wear for the shindig.  I googled “what to wear when giving birth” once, simply because the nurse at our childbirth class said that it might be more comfortable for you to wear your own clothes than the hospital gowns, which I thought was kind of brilliant and would never had thought of such a thing.  I found a message board in which a woman asked the same question and the responses were a bit judgmental and self-righteous – “How shallow do you have to be to dress up to have a baby?!” or “Are you too good for the hospital gown??”  Moms, Are. The. Worst.  Anyway, I decided on a sports bra, loose shorts that I normally wore as pajamas, and a jersey robe style shirt I bought at Walmart.  It worked out.  So, we get to our room and I try to get comfortable.  A little hard to do when you’re nervous about a giant baby popping out of your hooha.  I lay in bed and about 15 minutes later the nurses are in the room ready to put in my IV (which is always an adventure with me…this particular time hurt to the point I felt compelled to politely curse the nurse.)  They start the Pitocin at 7am and off we go.  I fell asleep for a bit and then watched some Jurassic Park.  This is basically how the entire morning went:

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I was also worried about not being able to eat the entire time, but the sweet nurse let me have a little juice and crackers, which doesn’t sound like much, but when you think you’re getting nothing to eat, it’s awesome.  Anyway, turns out the Pitocin did nothing the entire day.  I made it to 2cm and stopped.  My OB came in at noon and said I should walk around and try to get the baby moving.  So J and I walked up and down the hallway a few times, but nothing.  During this time, the woman next door was in labor.  I know because I heard her.  She was in labor with no epidural.  It was scary.  For me.  Luckily, J and I had walked to the other end of the hallway when the baby came.  Nobody needs to hear all that.  Anyway, with no progress the entire day, my doc decided to stop the Pitocin, use the cervix softening drug, and then try the Pitocin again the next morning.  So basically, our Monday was spent laying in bed, watching TV all day.

I wake up Tuesday morning, they start the Pitocin again, and I start contracting a couple hours later.  OOhhhhhh, so THAT’S what labor contractions feel like!  Yeah, they actually start hurting a little instead of being just the tightening of my abdomen kind.  At first it was like “oh, yeah, that kind of hurts a little, I think that’s a real contraction” and quickly became “oh good God, this is terrible!”  My doc came in around 11am to break the bag of waters (yes, it’s actually called “bag of waters,” like some sort of magical trinket you get while playing Dungeons and Dragons or any other RPG) and the pain definitely increased after that.  I requested some nitric oxide hoping it would take some edge off (I wasn’t ready to give up and go full on epidural just yet) but all it did was distract me slightly because I had this giant mask over my face now.  I unfortunately felt nothing and I was even kind of looking forward to the high :-/  Not long after that I opted for the epidural (#sorrynotsorry).  Yes, the numbing needle still hurt and it was scary, but J was there this time (unlike the cerclage) and I was ready for the pain to stop.  Part of me felt like a wuss because I knew I wasn’t that far along in labor and already needed it, but then I just tried to tell myself that maybe instead of being less tolerant to pain than others, I was actually experiencing worse pain than others.  Take that!

So, long story short, I progressed painlessly to 7cm and stopped again.  The later it got, the colder I got, and the chills set in.  I couldn’t stop shivering.  Like, if you had me hold a can of Coke for 10 seconds and then opened it, the can would have exploded.  My temperature slowly crept up through the night and at 2am I spiked a fever of 102.9.  It was then they finally decided to do a C-section.  By this point, I was ready for whatever.  I was tired, my catheter was bothering me, and the shivering sucked.  They wheeled me into the OR and about 20 minutes later, J came in and joined me.  I don’t remember details, I may have dozed off while they were operating.  And then I remember feeling that weird pull, hearing a faint cry, and then hearing the doctor say “It’s a boy!”  That was a pretty awesome moment.  I totally recommend waiting to find out your baby’s gender.  I didn’t get to see him right away.  It felt like 20 minutes or so went by before they brought him over to me.  During this time they were sowing me up (I felt all this tugging and honestly was afraid they were going to rip my skin) and I kept dozing off.  Even though I pretty much slept all day, I was so exhausted.  They finally let me see my perfect little man, they finished closing me up, then they wheeled me back into our room.

I remember seeing little guy across the room, in the plastic bin thing, being poked and prodded by a nurse.  J was with them.  I remember thinking “should I be more eager to spend time with my son?” but I was sooooo tired.  I figured he was in good hands.  I mean, these nurses know way more about babies than I do.  And I would have plenty of time with him later.  So, we slept for a few hours, and then they wheeled us into our recovery room, our home away from home for 4 more days…

My next post will be on those 4 more days.  If I have any advice to give to first time moms, it’s be prepared for ANYTHING!  When I tell my story to people, they look at me sympathetically sometimes, but it really wasn’t that bad.  And I think I feel that way because I was open to anything and everything.  We didn’t have a birth plan.  I would have rather not had gotten cut open, but I wasn’t opposed to it either.  My OB wasn’t even the one that delivered my baby.  She was there a lot when she could be, but she couldn’t be there during go time.  It would have been nice if she was, but she couldn’t and I was OK with that.  These doctors and nurses do this time after time after time and I trust they know what they’re doing.  Just because I have a baby growing inside me it means I have some sort of maternal instincts on what to do and how??  Ummm, no ma’am.  Just call me Jon Snow.

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Judgement Day

So, this time tomorrow I will be getting induced to force our first born out of my body.  If they didn’t, I feel like this baby had no plans of leaving anytime soon.  I imagine him/her a little something like me – lazy, content, and doesn’t like change, so it’s probably staying in there as long as it possibly can.

But, I’m so excited and terrified about inducing at the same time.  I’m not afraid something bad is going to happen or anything, I mean, I trust the nurses and doctors, they’ve done this a gagillion times, what makes mine any different?  I’ve never done this yet, so of course I’m going to trust them!  I just hate not knowing exactly what is going to happen.

(Ryan Gosling trying to make me feel better)

Friends and nurses keep telling me how the day will go, which is a little more comforting, but still, you really just don’t know exactly what to expect.  It’s a super weird feeling knowing exactly when you’re going to the hospital to have a baby.  You sort of dwell on it.  When you don’t know, you don’t really dwell on it (well, I didn’t anyway) and I feel like when you start going into labor, you’re kind of in “go-mode” (or that’s what I imagine…again, I’ve never done this before).  So, we’re spending our last day sans child cleaning the house and tidying up for house guests.  (Although I know that no matter how much I think my houses is clean, my mom is going to find something else to clean while she’s here.)

So, let’s recap the last 39 weeks:

  • total weight gained: about 20-25 lbs
  • food cravings: FRUIT!
  • symptoms: 2 weeks of headaches, 2 weeks of heartburn/indigestion, carpal tunnel, legs and feet swelling the last 3ish weeks
  • complications: short cervix, gestational diabetes
  • mood: pleasant on the outside, wanting to punch some faces on the inside
  • hair: not shedding
  • skin: glowing

J and I went out to dinner last night and the waitress mentioned how it’s amazing how much we’ll love this little thing, a love like we’ve never ever known.  I’ve thought about this before.  I love my dog like I’ve never loved anything before and I love my nieces like they’re my own.  But I know that I will love this little thing even more than that, the second I meet him/her and that’s so weird to me!  I guess we’ll find out soon.

So this time tomorrow I will either be playing the waiting game, in excruciating pain, in pain but not realizing it because of drugs, or I’ll be holding our sweet bundle of joy.  Shit’s gettin real y’all.

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.)