Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Latest OB Appt

I had a doctor's appointment today. We're doing weekly appointments now.

I gained 2 more pounds. I think that puts my total at 23 or 24 all together. Blood pressure was a tiny bit high, but I know that's because of stress. I talked to the Medical Assistant about the stress I'm having about leaving my job and it was good to have an unbiased ear to listen. I saw the doctor and he says I'm measuring exact and I look like I'm dropping like I'm supposed to. Next week, he's going to measure to see how far I'm dilated.

He told me something really perfect today. He told me not to listen to what my friends say or to anyone's horror stories because I've been doing great. He said to keep doing what I'm doing because my body will tell me what I need, not my friends. I asked about eating light the week before I'm due - he said that I shouldn't worry and not to change what I'm doing.

I see them again next Wednesday. I think I shall get a pedicure that day. A professional one! I think I deserve some pampering before Emily gets here!

Twelve Days and Counting....

I have to admit, I'm getting a little nervous about Emily getting here.

I've been getting everything taken care of. I have almost everything done - her car seat will be installed and inspected by the fire department on Friday. I got new tires for my car and my oil change is tomorrow. Her nursery is ready, except for purchasing my rocking chair. All of her clothes are washed and either hung up or put away, except for the outfit I just got her. I have at least 250 diapers in newborn and size 1. I prepared 4 9x13 pans of meals for the freezer, plus I have 1 more to make and I still am making frozen Cordon Bleu AND I bought several things of frozen cuts of meat to throw in the slower cooker - that comes out to about 3 weeks of dinners. I'm getting my Christmas shopping online...

You get it - I'm trying to get everything ready so that, after my last day of work this coming Tuesday, I can relax and get mentally prepared for labor.

Today, I realized something - I've been preparing for labor, for dressing her, for taking care of her, for taking care of me, but it all became so tangibly real today.

I'm about to be a mother. A parent. I know those phrases probably mean nothing position-wise to someone who is just a son or daughter because, for your whole life, you're someone's child. That's who you are for your entire existence and there's never any question about that. I'm lucky - I have both of my parents, alive and healthy, have been married for 27 years this past June. They've taken care of me in one way or another my whole life and I have never doubted that. I knew that I would never go hungry in their house and money was never something I thought about until I got my own job. I have been very blessed in having amazing parents.

Now, I'm going to be a parent and I can only pray and try to be half as good of a parent as I've had. Not only will I be a parent - I'm about to be someone's lifeline. In about 12 days, I'm going to give birth (which is easily the most sci-fi thing to happen in real life and the closest I will ever come to understanding creation) and this defenseless, fresh person will have life because of Eric and I. I don't even know what emotions I'll feel but I know love will be one. Even knowing that, I don't think I can fathom the love I'll feel for her  - I'm told it's unlike anything in the world.

Logically, I've known all this is going to happen. I guess, tonight, I realized that my life is never going to be the same again. There's no backing out or giving up if it's tough - I'm going to be Emily's mommy. I don't even really comprehend fully what that means yet; all I know is that I cannot wait to hold her close and hear her tiny little voice cry, knowing that Eric and I made this little person and God's in total control.

I wish I could articulate this better.

My Mom, the giver

For those of you who have not had the pleasure of meeting my mom, this blog may be the only time you get close to "meeting" her, since I frequently blog about moments with my mom. Specifically, I have blogged recently about her sense of humor in regards to comparing my feet to particular small, processed meat. (If you didn't read that blog, please click here before going any further.)

I'm pretty sure one of my mom's primary love languages is Giving Gifts and she does this VERY well. Case in point - last year for Christmas, I told her my favorite color is red so she gave me a huge bag with about 20 or so gifts, all RED. There was kitchen stuff, silly string, party streamers, tons of stuff! In short, my mom is very creative and I love that about her.

However, I have learned that she is also very witty and sneaky. She called me up a couple weeks ago and told my voicemail that she had found a gift for me that she wanted to give me after work. I never say no to gifts :) so I told her I would come by after work. I stopped over and she showed me that she had gotten me a few things and gave me the first to open...

She said they reminded her of me. I'm not seeing it...

You may notice that the can is open. That's because my husband ate them. I explained to him when I brought them home that they were meant as a joke but apparently he felt that his hunger was not.

Oh and for the record, I painted those toes myself on Thanksgiving. Yep, at less than 3 weeks from my due date, I gave myself a pedicure. I don't know how it happened, but I achieved it!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Thanksgiving... where did the month go?

Yesterday, we celebrated a holiday that I've been looking forward to for my entire pregnancy: Thanksgiving. :)

For the last few years, we have been getting together with my family for the holiday. We celebrated our first married Thanksgiving with just the two of us but let's face it - there's nothing like Mom's cooking. So instead, we bring over a dessert and a side or two. The dessert I (have been told I must always) make is pecan pie, by instruction of Susan and Eric.

I tried to do a chocolate-swirl cheesecake with chocolate graham cracker crust instead last year...

... but let's just say the troops rebelled...

I made my pecan pie yesterday morning and it turned out beautiful. Consistency, everything! I am ashamed to say I bought a crust but I didn't care....

Well, I let my pie cool for an hour and it came out amazing. I went to go wrap it up and there was a pecan missing out of the top. You can guess who did it...

When my mom asked me what happened, I told her to ask her son-in-law. That man should know better than to mess with my Thanksgiving pie!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Cravings: The Good, the Bad, and the Weird!

When I was first pregnant (before I found out), I craved strawberry milk. Now, I'm craving strawberry-flavored things again. I came across this article which was kind of interesting but it goes back to what I've known: Cravings mean that you're missing something!

For the full article, click here

Why are we craving?
Why ice cream? Why pickles? Well, no one is 100 percent sure, but it turns out your overwhelming urge for Swiss steak might not be so weird after all. “Pregnancy cravings are basically evolutionary,” suggests Dr. Brian Wansink, author of Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think. “The reason for a bizarre craving for anchovies or charcoal is because there's something deficient in a woman's system that she needs.” Craving sweet potato fries? Maybe it's your body's cry for potassium or vitamin A. But why do you NEED it to be sweet potato fries? “People tend to crave something that has the highest amount of that stuff [they're lacking]...with something that they can tolerate eating.” In other words, your body's sending signals of what it needs, and your brain/taste buds might spin that into something that you naturally find yummy. And if you're getting a totally balanced diet? According to Dr. Wansink, you probably aren't craving much.

Can this explain your need for chocolate milkshakes? Sure—that's a big helping of calcium. But the midnight run for Fritos is a little tougher to chalk up to nutrients. Julia Hormes, a doctoral candidate at the University of Pennsylvania, studies premenstrual cravings and thinks her findings apply to some pregnancy cravings as well. Her explanation: Some cravings are (dare we say it?) big fat excuses. For example, you want Twinkies because, well, you WANT Twinkies. When you wanted Twinkies before, you might have grabbed a banana and ignored the unhealthy desire for goo and sugar, or even totally denied the fact that you desired them. But now you're pregnant. Your body's going through a lot and -- darn it -- you're going to have a Twinkie if you want one. “I think pregnancy may well be a situation where our culture acknowledges a woman's right to indulge herself. Our culture sort of gives you permission. Women give themselves permission,” she explains. A few Bumpies agree that cravings can go both ways (nutritional and absolutely not):

I haven't craved anything weird. I've mostly allowed myself to indulge in things that I normally don't allow myself to eat and write it off as a craving.”

“[I craved] Hardy's Thickburgers and cheeseburgers in general. I think it was my body's way of demanding that I feed it more iron. Oh yes, and any form of cake. I think that was my body's way of telling me that cake is delicious.”

(Note: If you start craving nonfood stuff like dirt, charcoal, clay or laundry starch, don't eat it! This is a disorder called pica, which some scientists think may be related to iron deficiency or other dietary needs. Resist the urge and call your doctor ASAP—they should be able to help you stick to eating real food.)

Aches and Pains... aren't that bad!

We have just entered a time of back-aches. Not even the memory foam on the bed works. I asked some friends on Facebook for tips on easing the backpain. The answer I received?

"Ah, at this point, it will ache all the time."


On another note, I had my OB appointment yesterday. The medical assistant takes me back, weighs me (I'm right on track for gain), gets Emily's heartbeat on the Doppler (132 bpm), and so I get up. Then, I am informed that I'm having my group B strep test (click the link if you want to know) this week instead of week 36 (next week). Surprise!

Now, my wonderful coworker has freaked me out for everything from painful pelvic exams to my bellybutton never going back in (which it hasn't come out yet) and so I got all worried. But it's painless. Just not comfortable to have to lay on my back :( All that anticipation for nothing! I told her that she can continue to freak me out so nothing is as bad as it is portrayed to be. I'm hoping this psychological trick helps me in labor...

But I'm going to take a wild guess and say it'll hurt either way.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

My Husband is such a gem, and so is my mom.

This weekend has been hectic.

We moved over all the rest of our stuff to the new house. We had a cleaning crew come through the old house in hopes of getting at least half of our deposit. All of the utitlities are off in the old house. I've started unpacking and I realized I'm going to need to do some organizing if I want to get my stuff put away. I have made an "unpacking plan" which I have titled "Mission: Move-In." It's got a contents page, and is currently 11 notebook pages.

Either way, on Monday night, I felt like I'd pulled a leg muscle and asked Eric to massage my leg. Since he's a good guy, he was very nice and massaged my leg for me and then says to me that my toes look... "not fat, because that's not the right word."

"Swollen, you mean?" I asked.

"Yes, swollen," he replied.

Thank you, Eric, for your wonderful choice of words.

For the record, the last two days, I've been staring at my toes. Maybe they've always been sausage-like and I've never noticed. Maybe they are swollen and I need to hydrate better and put my feet up. Since this concerned me, I called someone that's known me from birth - my mom.

"Have my toes always looked like sausages?" I texted her. After about 2 minutes, she texted me back.

"Vienna sausages."

Thanks, Mom.