Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Elevated Emotions: Handling the Ups and Downs

Ha. That was the title of the weekly e-newsletter that I get from Lamaze International. This whole pregnancy thing has been pretty great. I've felt good, things have been going well. Sure - I was nervous to hit certain milestones.... but I've been pretty 'ok' since April 1st. If you read back through old posts - the ups and downs of TTC, watching friends and family get pregnant before me, month after month of hope, dread and disappointment.... that was BRUTAL. Looking at my calender, thinking about taking a vacation day (or two) I was noticing that I had taken sick days around CD1 on different months. And I remember - I would wake up and have my period, and just want to hide in bed from the whole world. It sucked. For me, I was an emotional wreck... which honestly - doesn't happen that often.

But this week! Jesus. I think the big reason is that I have an insane amount of thing going on right now. My work is going through a re-org - and it's somewhat stressful to see where things are going to shake out in the end. Add on 2 MAJOR production issues in the past week, which turned out NOT to be an issue from my team... but at first all fingers were pointing to us? Nice and stressful. We've got Aaron interviewing for jobs - which is GOOD stress. I can't stop day dreaming about the thought that he'll get one of these great jobs (read significantly better salary) and I won't have to stress over the $1800 a month for day care!

The thing that is really getting to me? My preggo belly is like the lightening rod for assvice. I'll be at the gym on the elliptical... people talk about if they think I should be working out or not. I'm in line at the grocery store? Someone will make a comment about the sugar substitute lemonade I have in my cart. At work? People will ask if I'm coming back after maternity, assuming I'll say no. When I say yes? That leads to another 5 minute commentary on what they think I should do. I even get random people saying 'Epidurals are a gals best friend' (remembering that I'm trying to have a natural birth).

And it's all getting to me. I'm cranky. I'm tired from lack of sleep (which I remedied last night with Tylenol PM - come on - I dare you to question if I should take it. My doc said it was fine!) I want to get back to the easy, fun part. And I'm sure I will... but right now - it's like I can't avoid thinking about all the advice. Aaron said to me - well, just don't talk about the baby with people. And I had to explain, when you have an obvious baby belly - it isn't like I'm the one starting the conversation! Sigh.

Monday, July 28, 2008

I did it!

I went on Sunday and registered! Put loads of stuff on there, and by the end was pretty tired! I think we were in the store for 3 hours. I went with friends on my street that already have kids - and thank god they came. Walking around that store is crazy! I bet if I went with Aaron only I wouldn't have looked at half the things... and I already know that Aaron is going to think we don't need half of what I registered for.

I did get pretty overwhelmed at the crib section. I have a friend that has a crib that he says I can use - and I really wasn't in LOVE with any of the ones I saw there. I'm hoping his crib is fine, and I don't have to make that decision.

I also bought a Snoogle, and DAMN did I sleep well last night! It's this crazy pillow thing that you can move to where ever you need it to get comfortable... and it totally works. Awesome.

Friday, July 25, 2008

21 weeks

I have to admit, when I wasn't pregnant, and desperately trying to get that way... I would read all the blogs of the pregnant IFers and wonder why they weren't embracing the pregnancy. Or why they would say things like "it's starting to look like I'm really bringing home a baby in X days".

Now I totally get it. The first half (or more!) of pregnancy is filled with worrying that things aren't going to stay put. Once you get out the first trimester, you start feeling better, but don't feel any movement or anything... so it still doesn't seem real. Then, you start feeling random bits of movement, and you get worried that in the 'big' ultrasound, maybe something will be wrong. I'm finally past all those bits... and I'm really realizing that a baby will be entering our house on or about Dec 5th.

So I've started asking friends that already have babies for advice on what I should get and register for - and the opinions are overwhelming! Mostly they are telling me stuff NOT to buy. If I listen to everyone, all I would have when the baby arrives is a sling, a car seat and 1 or 2 onsies. And I would getting most everything second hand from a consignment shop. I'm also really starting to knit for the baby (I'm a bit of a 'hardcore' knitter). And people see the little sweaters and booties and tell me that there is no point to knit the tiny things.

And they make a good point - you don't know if your baby will like the bouncy seat or the bassinet or if breastfeeding will work out and I know that little newborns get changed constantly and getting them in and out of sweaters might be a pain and they grow super fast and booties fall off.... but geez! I'm FINALLY ready to buy baby stuff! And register for baby stuff! And daydream about making the nursery cute! And many don't know I bought yarn over 3 years ago in anticipation of this pregnancy. I even have a post on my knitting blog where I talk about yarn I bought in 2006 to knit baby items. ....

While keeping my friends advice in mind... I'm making my first big trip this weekend to BRU and did start a bit of a registry at The Right Start. Last night, I ordered an Amby Baby bed, knowing full well that maybe my baby won't like motion when it sleeps (although anyone I know that has one thinks it's the most awesome thing ever, I do know that I could resell it on Craig's list for just a bit less than I paid for it new). And I'm happily knitting on baby sweaters and booties fully aware that some of them may never even get worn. I don't care. Sure, I may waste time knitting things that aren't going to be worn more than once. And yeah, maybe I could have gotten some things for the baby cheaper at yard sales and consignments shops.

But hey - I thought that I was going to get pregnant the month I went off the pill. I will plan for the best, and accept that maybe my baby will be allergic to wool and will only sleep while being held. Like Aaron says - we expect the best, but also plan for the worst, right!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

New Belly Picture!

Here I am at almost 21 weeks (20w6d)

I didn't think there was too much change, but when I compare to my 17w3d picture, wow!

Grow baby grow!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Total Lack of Motivation

First - thanks for all the good thoughts on Aaron's interview. It did go well - and he thinks he will be going back in for technical part of the process either end of this week or beginning of next week. From what he told me, the people he would be working with seem great - and looks like everyone there has children, so they are pretty family focused. One downside, is that he probably won't be able to work from home (he does that about 2 time a week now), but the commute is so much shorter - that's OK.

As for me? I have a total lack of motivation. I had so much trouble getting out of bed this morning! We were so busy at work the last few weeks, and things continue to pile up... I constantly find myself daydreaming of my vacation and then maternity leave! We have a re-org going on right now, and everyone is so up in arms about it... I have to admit, I just don't care! Just let me keep my job, and I'll be happy. That is SO not me.

I do have a bit more vacation that I could take... but I find myself wanting to hold tightly to it - maybe take a week off before my due date, or tag it onto the end of my maternity leave? But - now I'm thinking that maybe isn't the best idea, as I'm feeling rather burned out. I'll have to think on it for a while. Some of my problem I'm sure stems from the fact that I'm really having trouble sleeping. I just can't get comfortable and/or I always have to pee. If I flip over too quickly in the middle of the night, I get horrible pains in my side too! Maybe time to invest in a body pillow?

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Good thoughts for Aaron....

He is going on a job interview today! His current job has gone from being fun, to being a place where they are laying off people and offshoring like mad. 4 of his good friends have moved to other companies, and he just isn't having the same experience that he used to. Add on the fact that his commute is 1 hour and 15 minutes one way, and he is drastically unpaid for what he does... he's started looking.

Today he is interviewing with a small, but mature start up. Which is a huge change from the HUGE company he works for now - the new place has 15 people. Which I think would be better for him. It's also a 'jack of all trades' sort of job, which is much more up Aaron's alley then the way his current job is going - narrowing down to being a single task focused job.

I hope it all goes well today. Even if this doesn't end up being the right job - he's started the process, and that is a good step. He's been so stressed out the last few months - and his new boss really sucks. A good example of what a horrible manager she is comes from this story. I was asking Aaron if he could take July 3rd off, so we could have a nice long weekend. And he said the boss said that no one could take vacation until the current project went live (which was supposed to be last weekend- it didn't make it and was pushed off 4 weeks, but that is a whole other story). 2 days after he tells me that? He finds out she is going away for 2 1/2 weeks on vacation. Unbelievable, right? She even had the balls to go to HR to see if she could tell people they couldn't take vacation, but that she was going to pay them for the lost vacation time. Not surprisingly, HR refused.

Anyway - fingers crossed that this morning's interview is going great!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Back from vacation, and my 20 week check up!

Today, I went to my 20 week check up, and I didn't even wear my lucky socks. I know, I know, I'm getting a little crazy. But, I've been regularly feeling kicks, so I was feeling good. Of course, on the drive over - I realized that I would also be getting the 'official' results of the ultrasounds - and was starting to curse myself for not wearing the socks. But all was fine. The doc said everything looked perfect on the u/s, and then we listened to the heartbeat. I didn't even find out how many BPM, but at first, the LO was kicking right at the wand, so we had to wait until the baby calmed down a bit to hear the heartbeat. Everything was great. I even talked a bit with her about my desire for a natural childbirth, and she was really supportive, which is reassuring. She is putting a note in my file, and she says that will help the doc on call know how to phrase questions when I'm in labor.

Nantucket was great. In a big surprise, my friend who is a doula was there, and we met for lunch. We were talking about my pregnancy in general, and she was giving different advice... and I jokingly asked what my odds were of her being my doula. And she said - really good! Ha! I'm so excited! She also has her own shop where they offer childbirth classes. So - she wants me to start a few classes with her within the next month (hpynobirthing being one I'm most interested in).

We went to beach every day, and both of us managed to get sunburned on the last day - isn't that always the way it works? I was on Nantucket to teach a class at the 1800 house in punch needle embroidery- and that was also a success. People were asking if I was going to offer it again next year, which is flattering. A lot of Aaron's family either lives on the island (his mom, grandmother and aunt and uncle) or is there for the summer (an uncle), so we got to visit a bunch of family in one swoop. The uncle that is there for the summer has a 55 foot motorboat and we got to go out on it for dinner one night. What an amazing way to spend the summer. It's interesting to see how the other half lives!

Well, now I'm back to the real world, and need to catch up on work. Such is life.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Back from the ultrasound...

Everything looked about the same as last time. But I'll show you a picture because I can't resist!

The baby was in a better position - so the tech got all the shots she needed - but this lady wasn't very friendly at all. Whatever! I got to see my little one - and this time he/she was bouncing all around and waving and it was cute. Of course, Not Nice Lady was zooming all around the screen, so we didn't get too look for very long... but it was good to know that they got all the shots they needed.

I'm finally able to say that every once and a while I feel movement that I'm sure is the baby. Like this weekend, I went to a water aerobics class (yep, after posting I wasn't really able to work out that much, I worked out 3 times last week). After I finished, and was in the car - I felt KICKKICKKICK! Usually for workouts I've been walking, using the elliptical or swimming. There was a lot out bouncing in the water aerobics class.... wonder if the baby thought all the bouncing was fun, or annoying!

This weekend, we also got to do our first baby shopping trip. I put Aaron in charge of the baby items that need research - the stroller, car seat and baby monitors. Those are gadgets, and that is his thing. Oh - and also the baby safety stuff. Anyway - we liked all the reviews of the Bugaboo Frog. At first I thought it was crazy pricey, but then learned that it goes from newborn to toddler... so the cost ends up being the same (not needing to buy the newborn 'travel system' and the stroller for the older child). So - we went to the store to try it out (I was nervous about height, as I'm tall and have pushed baby's around in other strollers that SUCKED). It was very nice, and easy to use. And we chose this carseat (in red, not pink!). And the best news is that my father in law will buy it for us!

On Thursday, we are headed to Nantucket to visit Aaron's family. I'm glad I'm showing - because that will be fun. And we'll bring copies of the u/s pictures. I'm teaching a punch needle embroidery class on Friday - but I hope to spend time swimming at the beach! It's supposed to be hot and sticky this weekend - perfect beach weather.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Planned vacation!

There are few things that Aaron and I disagree on. One of the largest is travel/vacation. I am lucky enough to get 4 weeks vacation, plus 8 holidays a year. Aaron only gets 3 weeks, and I (think) 6 holidays. So, I'm resigned that Aaron isn't going to get to go with me on every vacation.

Forgetting the fact that I have a full week more than Aaron to actually go on vacation - we do NOT agree on what defines a 'fun and relaxing' vacation. Here is a list of what I would like to do on a vacation:

Go to a new place I've never been, and forget about the real world while touring around
Spa (massage, hot tubs, pools, relaxing and reading)
Sightseeing (beaches, riding around on a scooter - like on an island somewhere)
Sleeping in
Going out to a nice dinner

This is Aaron's idea of fun vacation:
Staying home
Demolishing large parts of the house
Doing a large home improvement project
Going to someone else's home
Demolishing large parts of their home
Doing a large home improvement project.

This is obviously a large difference in 'vacation values'. And, I used to really fight this. Which resulted in 2 trips to China, a cruise down the Italian and French Rivera, a trip to Crete, and assorted long weekends to B&Bs. Which, I would like to point out, he always had a ton of fun once we actually GOT there - and to this day will continue to talk to the experiences we had on those trips.

But ever since we've bought our own house, it's hard to fault his logic. Aaron can do very cool things that have really improved the value of the house. Things that other people need to spend big bucks to hire someone to do (install hardwood floors, add another room on the house, take a wall down between two rooms). Sometimes, though, this will become a point of stress. I sometimes feel like we always have some sort of HUGE project underway, and find myself commenting on how 'shouldn't that be done soon".... and then Aaron will take a week off work to finish it up... and I can't complain, because I wanted it DONE.

Then I started thinking. I'm having a BABY. Life between the two of us is going to be changing drastically (not to say in a bad way - but certainly Very Different). I'm going to be in this house for 3 months on my maternity leave. And then I watch other friends who have children already trying to plan trips away (finding kid friendly places or getting grandparents to watch kids). And I realize, not only haven't we been on a real trip for over 3 years (not even a long weekend, because I don't count visiting family as vacation) - but pretty soon - any trip we take is going to be vastly different. This past year has been very hard and stressful for both of us. With switching REs, the aftermath of the ectopic, the IVF cycles, the miscarriage..... and not to mention we both have pretty stressful jobs! I started to raise the idea of a vacation.

And Aaron fought it. Saying there was too much to be done on the house. And we didn't have the money. But I persevered, and found the Equi.nox Resort (google it - it's really nice). It's not too far away, and it's a Star.wood Hotel! This is exciting because Aaron works for Star.wood, and we get employee 'hot rates' - which for this resort is $89 a night (plus 50% off food in the hotel restaurants). Normal rate? $349 a night. Sweet, no? Needless to say - he is now convinced, and we have booked 3 nights on Labor Day weekend. I'm ridiculously excited.

I do realize that this is probably my last vacation for a while.... but I'll survive. And - it's really fun to have this to look forward too!

Ultrasound tomorrow!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

If it's not one thing, it's another!

OK. So I got past the 'big' ultrasound - I figured once I got past that, I wouldn't be as worried. And, now that things look good (of course, to be confirmed by the radiologist who is reading it - she told me if there was anything bad we would here within a few days. I'm not worried).

But, it seems like everything is going against me when it comes to trying to go for a walk or go swimming. Last week, all day the weather would be great, and then right as I got home, major thunderstorms would pass through. I then figured I would go for nice walks at the cabin, but it rained the ENTIRE time. Then, this week, I've just been working late trying to get this damn release out the door. So I feel guilt. Guilt that I'm not out getting exercise and keeping my body in good shape for this pregnancy. But then, I realize that walking in 100 degree heat isn't the best idea anyway. Augh!

I talk to my friends on the street, and many didn't leave their couch for the full 9 months! And they all did great in their pregnancies. I guess I need to stop putting pressure on myself and just go with the flow. This heatwave is supposed to break tomorrow.... maybe I can get back on track then.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Back from the 'big' ultrasound!

Things look great! The baby was somewhat uncooperative, laying face down - so I have to go back next week, hoping the baby flips - so that can get a better view of the heart. She was able to see most things - the heart rate was at 137, we saw all 4 chambers of the heart, the flow through the heart, the umbilical cord and blood flow, the liver, the kidneys, the stomach and bladder (with fluid in there - good things). She took shots of the brain and a bunch of measurements.... so that is all a big relief to me!

The picture looks a lot to me like our 11 week u/s:

The baby kept on waving it's hand around - too cute. To me it was crazy to see the baby moving around, but not be able to feel anything! The u/s tech was telling me that I should be feeling things soon.

I'm a bit bummed that I'm going to have to go back again next week, but I won't complain too much about another chance to see the baby! The good news is that she was able to see most things, so a bunch of the things I was worried about were answered.

This weekend was nice - my mother's new puppy is a bit out of control. I was glad we decided to come home early on Sunday for a bit of down time. Even though the cabin was fun, sometimes my mom stresses me out (I'm sure that isn't a surprise to other daughters out there).... plus, the friends that came with me introduced me to a game called Pounce. We played for hours at a time! It's a fun and competitive card game... but a bit high energy. I spent Sunday afternoon sitting and knitting and watching TV.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Thoughts on being pregnant

I've kind of 'popped' over the past week - and by wearing maternity shirts, it's hopefully obvious that I'm pregnant and not just fat! Now that it's becoming more and more 'real' - I want to capture some of the neat things about being pregnant.

- Dreams. It's almost fun to go to bed to see what the nights dreams have in store for me! I'm not the kind of person that usually remembers dreams... but now? I have these awesome, full night, epic dreams. And some, let's just say they are REALLY worth going to bed for.
- Body image. It's so fun to get loads of comments on everyone that my belly is 'cute'. I'm not totally hung up on my size - but I'm certainly not thin. It's neat to have this totally different view of my body.
- Cravings. I finally had my first official MUST HAVE craving last night. I needed to have breakfast for dinner. But there was no place close to get that (I guess we could have cooked it ourselves) so Aaron and drove 20 miles to an IHOP. I had an omelet and Pigs In a Blanket. Yumyumyumyum.
- New Clothes. I haven't changed sizes in a while, so I rarely buy new clothes. It's really fun! Except all of the plus size shirts are crazy low cut v-necks.... so I feel a bit exposed. Aaron thinks it's awesome.

On the flip side, there are the little fears that poke in. I still don't feel movement (or maybe I do? I'm just not sure). I concentrate and focus my thoughts down there.... hoping to WILL myself to feel SOMETHING, and I don't. I thought maybe I felt a kick the other day.... but then I didn't feel anything again. Without having a constant reminder that there is a little person is in there, I sometimes get worried. But that passes pretty quickly. I'm really looking forward to the ultrasound on Monday - I haven't seen the little one since 12 weeks. It is going to be crazy different!

I'm off to the cabin for the long weekend, so the next update you get from me will be from the ultrasound! Have a great long weekend, everyone!