Sunday, January 29, 2017

Weeks 10, 11, and 12

I sit here at 13 weeks and 1 day pregnant, and I'm overwhelmed with gratitude. Today is the first day I haven't had any outright nausea in a long time! The last 3 weeks have been rough. It took me a full week to recover from the head cold I got after the new year, then we had a few "normal" days before Noah came down with the dreaded norovirus. I had started some herbs for nausea in addition to meds, and they helped for a day or two! Then the day Noah started getting better, I caught the stomach bug, adding insult to pregnancy nausea injury. I had 4 days of really intense nausea (and vomiting) and inability to do much of anything. I'm so so grateful that 2 of those days were on a weekend and I wasn't scheduled to work.

My mom was supposed to come keep us company during week 11, but ended up postponing travel by 4 days between an ice storm in the area, and the desire to avoid getting sick. She came to town briefly, spent that Thursday with my brother and niece, and came over to our house for a bit on Friday to bring us some groceries (THANK YOU) and entertain Noah for an hour while I laid down. It was so helpful, and since Noah was better and we'd Cloroxed common surfaces, I thought she'd be good. Alas, this bug is intense and it even got my mom sick!

So I can't even distinguish between weeks 10, 11, and 12 right now because they were so very crazy. Now I'm down with another head cold, which is ridiculous, but still way better than feeling like throwing up all the time.

All I know is, I'm so excited to be entering the second trimester! Let the fun part of pregnancy begin!


P.S. The change in prenatal care in the 3.5 years between pregnancies is more different than I expected. It could also be because last time I saw an OBGYN at KU until 28 weeks, and this time I just started seeing my Midwife from the get-go (she's actually way more thorough than the OB ever was). With Noah, we got the Nuchal Translucency ultrasound and associated blood work drawn at 12 weeks. With this baby, that wasn't offered (bah it was a fun ultrasound to see). But they did offer a genetic panel in which they drew my blood and were able to detect baby's genes to look for trisomies, other genetic abnormalities, and even baby's sex! We decided to wait on the boy/girl diagnosis until the 20 week ultrasound, but it was a huge relief to hear that everything else was normal! Life is such a miracle.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

On Being Present

I normally scoff at the idea of having a "word of the year," but this year I really felt like I needed and wanted to focus on being PRESENT and intentional with my time and my relationships. The irony has not escaped me that we are 21 days into the new year and I'd rather be anywhere but here.

Far be it from me to compare my babies, but since pregnancy is my own body and my own hormones, I feel like I can say this: the past two months have been AWFUL. Some say it's because I'm having a girl. I feel like it's because I'm 31 years old and not 28. All I know is, I missed being pregnant so much after my first delivery, and right now, today, I cannot for the life of me imagine why. My skin is flaring up into all sorts of weird, unflattering rashes. My angry immune system got slammed with a respiratory virus two weeks ago that took me down for a full 5-6 days. I've been short of breath from the get-go. I know I need prenatal vitamins, but I can.not. stomach them most days.

I pray that those fun pregnancy days are to come: the wiggles and hiccups and the oneness that you can't help but feel with that little heart beating away. For now, while I'm ever so grateful that baby's heart IS beating away in there, I'm just sick.

The first time around, I had a constant level of queasiness, and I certainly had plenty of food aversions, but I also had cravings. Some foods tasted phenomenal and I ate them again and again. Right now? Gag me. NOTHING sounds good. If something sounds remotely appetizing, I do my best to eat it, but I inevitably feel sick afterwards and never want to eat that food again. This week, I finally had 2-3 days of feeling pretty close to normal. Acupuncture, herbs, twice-daily meds, and gestational age seemed to be on my side. Thursday morning, I told a friend I was on the downhill side of the nausea, and I ate a whole plate of food at our MOPS breakfast. That night, I started getting symptoms of the stomach bug Noah's had all week.

And today, I'm having a major pity party. The sun was out this morning, and I couldn't even get out of bed. I long to work up a sweat (that's not a night sweat or a fever-breaking sweat), but I haven't worked out since the nausea started at 5 weeks. You know what? It's January. It's gray. It's cold. I'm freaking out about how much life is already changing. I need endorphins.

I hate seeing how scared and sad Noah looks when I sit in the bathroom, waiting to throw up. ("Mama need burp.") It breaks my heart to hear him say, "Mama don't lay down anymore" when, out of necessity between fatigue and nausea, I've spent the better part of December and January in a horizontal position.

So God, help me be faithful. Help me be PRESENT. Help me see you here. Not because it could be worse (because it could). Not because it will hopefully be better soon. Although I pray that this sickness does not last the entire pregnancy. But because you made me, you knit me in my mother's womb, and I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Every day of every one of my pregnancies was numbered before I was born, and I'm honored to be a vessel for new life. THIS IS A SEASON. Very likely the end of my last first trimester ever. I don't want to wish it away. Okay, I do. But I don't WANT to want to wish it away.

I love that I do feel movement already. I can't wait for our 20 week ultrasound to see baby and find out if there's a he or a she in there. I love that at 12 weeks with this one, my belly basically looks like it did at 20 weeks with the first. I laugh at myself in hindsight, because while I was legitimately really insecure about gaining weight early on with Noah, long before I gained a belly, I'd take that awkwardness any day now, because it would mean I'm eating real food.

I'm confused, I'm tired, I'm sick, I'm SO emotional. But let the record show that I was here.

(Also, let the record show that Ross is working his butt off to do everything I'm not doing right now, and that Noah has the sweetest heart ever and he keeps giving me kisses to help me feel better.)

Friday, January 13, 2017

A Day in the Life

I've been meaning to do this for way, way too long. And in fact, I almost forgot I'd chosen to do it today until mid-morning. Of course, my phone memory is full, per usual, so I barely took any photos. I guess this a truly an accurate depiction of our lives right now!

0300: I start tossing and turning and can't get back to sleep thanks to a tension headache.

0600: Ross finally decides to just get up and go to the gym.I continue to lay in bed, trying to catch a cat nap before the craziness begins.

0645: Ross is home and Noah is up. This is the fourth night this week that Noah has slept through the night. Thank God! He was up 1-3 times a night most nights in December and we are still recovering.

0700: Ross gets Noah and gets him dressed, while I get up and get myself dressed.

0720: Noah and I eat breakfast while Ross gets ready for work. I also pack a lunch for Noah and myself since we have a busy morning.

0735: Ross heads to work, and graciously starts my car so it can warm up a bit in the driveway.

0745: Noah and I rush out the door for my prenatal appointment.

0815:We check in, and only have to wait a few minutes before my name gets called. I don't know if it's because it's Friday, or because it's early, but I've never seen the clinic this quiet!

0840: Midwife comes in, chats for a few minutes, and finds the heartbeat. It took a minute, and I found myself holding my breath. I was so relieved when she found the baby handing out on my right side, heart beating away perfectly. So relieved. After that, I got a quick blood draw and we headed to our next destination.

0930: We arrive at Urban Air! We loved Jumperoo last winter, and I can't believe we haven't been yet this winter. Actually, yet I can. November and December were crazy. It was really fun to be back, though! We spent 2.5 hours running, jumping, and climbing. I'm super proud of him for keeping his pants dry all morning.

1145: Only had a minor meltdown leaving our fun morning activity. Noah and I both ate lunch in the car on the drive home (chicken salad, applesauce, and granola bars).

1215: When we got home, Noah and I inhaled some air-popped popcorn. He played while I took a quick shower (just... too many germs indoors in the winter, and I just recovered from the last cold).

1245: Finally have Noah in his nap diaper and nap jams, in his dark room. I am PRAYING that our morning activity wore him out enough to nap. This 1+ month-long nap strike isn't my favorite. I proceed to lay in my bed and play on social media, waiting for the chattering and the footsteps in his room to die down. They never do. Instead, I waste the whole time on my phone, instead of napping or being productive. Not the best idea.

1430: I open Noah's door and he bolts out of his room. I ask if he wants to snuggle in my bed (praying for a nap), and his answer is an emphatic "no!" He plays with his little airplane, and I start making some potato salad. I wouldn't say I've had any pregnancy cravings yet, but the past 3 days I've actually had an appetite, and when something sounds not revolting, I've been trying to make it happen since I have lost half a pound in the past 11 weeks. Anyway, thus begins an hour of cutting, boiling, mixing, interruptions, toddler playing with water in the sink, needing clothes changed, etc. While the potatoes boil, I help Noah assemble his plane twice, and he fully disassembles it twice. It's fun to watch him figure it out!

1545: I eat a bowl of potato salad and read 5-6 books to Noah. He really loves the Jillian Jiggs books this week, which warms my heart.

1600: Time starts passing very slowly by this time of the day, especially when no nap is involved. I start grasping at straws, and ask Noah if he wants to help me bake cookies.

1615: The peanut butter has been thrown, jar shattered, and toddler in time-out while I clean up.

1630: I call the local Thai restaurant for takeout, noting the need to get medium spiciness this time. We order hot most places, but we were practically crying when we ordered hot from Lemongrass last time!

1700: Noah and I leave to pick up dinner.

1730: We are home, and start eating. Yum!

1800: Ross is home. He helps us finish mixing the cookie dough we started earlier, and then he and Noah play "lots of minutes," per Noah's request.

1845: Ross takes Noah to get a shower while I tidy up.

1900: We tag-team the bedtime diaper, lotion, tooth-brushing drama.

1925: Noah is in bed. He's been sleeping in his crib sans side since we got back from Christmas, and he's doing really well in the sense that he hasn't fallen off the bed, or slept on the floor by the door at all! We did change the monitor view, though, and I do miss smiling at all of his funny sleep positions before going to bed for the night.

2030: I eat a second helping of my dinner while Ross finally gets to eat his dinner. We debate watching a movie, but decide to watch a few episodes of The Office instead.

2130: Never mind. Don't actually get into bed until 9:30, and decide we are too old and tired to watch anything. Lights out!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Weeks 7, 8, and 9, oh my!

Wow. Wow wow wow. Either I'd forgotten how awful the first trimester is, or it's really just worse this time around for whatever reason. Nausea and total food aversion hit hard right at the start of 6 weeks, and even the thought of giving a nuanced weekly update made me more nauseated! I'm very thankful for twice-a-day meds, but I still have zero cravings whatsoever. Just a whole lot of aversions.

The holiday season? Wonderful. Joyful. Wiped. Me. Out. On the one hand, I'm super thankful that all the chaos has made the first ten weeks FLY by, whereas I remember them positively crawling when I was pregnant with Noah. On the other hand, the massive cold that I got this week has to be my body's way of saying that things are changing, quickly, and I need to slow down and re-evaluate accordingly.

And speaking of holidays, we told my extended family the news the day after Christmas, by simply letting Noah wear a "Super Cool Big Bro" shirt to Christmas at my grandma's house. It was fun to see the realization slowly dawn on people's faces at different times.

Another fun thing is, I feel like my belly started to "pop" this past week. I feel like I look now the same way I looked at 14-15 weeks with Noah. Also, I know the naysayers will scoff, but I SWEAR I've been feeling baby move this week. He or she is the size of a strawberry, so surely that's big enough for me to feel a "thump" when he or she bounces around, right? It's certainly big enough for me to have trouble bending over to pick stuff up already.

It's all suddenly so... real. We are (hopefully) 25% of the way to meeting this baby already! *gulp*

To quote my old favorite, Saved by the Bell...