Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Baby on Board

I'm still new to this. I don't feel like a mother all the time, though sometimes, after I've fed, bathed and put the little girl to bed, I do. When I comfort her as she cries, I do. When she reaches for my face with her little pudgy hand, I do. Those are the moments that I love. Then there are the moments that I do not love. The times when I am in a very busy deli, waiting to order a sandwich and she awakes, though she has barely napped, and starts screaming like a banshee. She cannot be soothed and just wants out of the stroller. Or when we're driving and she starts screaming, wanting out of the car seat. Or when she wakes up at 3 in the morning, wanting a bottle even though she shouldn't be hungry at that time. Or when she has an unidentifiable rash, or a stomach bug and I don't know what to do to help and I worry that it's something far worse than what it really is. Those are the moments when I think "what the hell was I thinking???"

I really want to take a trip, but I dread the idea of being on a plane, stuck with her sitting on my lap, knowing full well that she doesn't like to sit anywhere for very long. She's not old enough to enjoy a DVD or to sit and play with toys, quietly. She's not old enough to enjoy our destination or to remember it, even, once we've returned. The trip I want to take is not for her, but I would want to take her along regardless. I just wish I could sit on a plane or on a tour bus or a scenic boat ride with her. She will not sit, not for me and not for long. I will end up being the person that everyone around me hates. The one with the screaming baby, who disrupts your travel experience.

But if I HAD to do it, it would end up being done, right? If I had a sick relative to visit in, say, Peru, we would make the trip despite the inconvenience. It would have to be done, and we would survive it. So I have to bite the bullet and make a plan to travel with the baby girl in tow (along with the one million things that she will need while we are away!) and alleviate my fear of doing so. Perhaps we'll start close, with a trip to someplace like Miami, say, and then if that goes well we'll get more ambitious and head overseas. With a portable DVD player in hand so at least we'll be able to block out the annoying sound of our baby crying.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Waiting Game

I'm sitting here, at work, wondering when this baby girl is going to make her appearance into the world. Yesterday evening, the Braxton-Hicks were happening all the time, and I even had a bit of cramping. So I sat there thinking "is this it?" One of my concerns is that I won't know when to go to the hospital. I know from what I've heard and read that there is no way I will not know. And if I end up at the hospital too early, well, a moment of embarrassment for some peace of mind isn't so terrible.

It's hard to be at work. Not only because I bounce between exhaustion and energy, but also because I am totally preoccupied. I keep thinking about the hospital. Part of me is really looking forward to being there. Secluded with only Eric and the doctors/nurses, knowing that our daughter will be arriving shortly. I'm super excited about seeing her for the first time. I know not to expect adorable immediately... I know they come out red and puffy and wrinkled and coated. Sometimes even "furry". But I want to look at her and see whatever it is that I see. Her little toes and tush. Her cute mouth. I want to see how Eric handles it all. I am ready. But when will it happen?

I don't feel like she's dropped at all. My stomach is still riding high. Although I have been readying everything I can, I don't feel an extreme nesting instinct taking over. I don't feel like I've got a bowling ball between my legs, as I've heard some people describe the final days before giving birth. So I guess it's not just time yet. I'm still hopeful that she'll be early, rather than late, but I could just be setting myself up for disappointment. Well, disappointment is not really the right word... a long road might be better.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Close Call

Approaching the 37 week mark and had a little scare at my last doctor's visit. To be honest, this was the first time that I started crying out of nervousness over what was going to happen with the little bean this entire pregnancy. It really has been your run of the mill, by the book pregnancy. Until Tuesday.

I went in and the doc did the usual measurements, blood pressure, weight, etc. and then she listened for the heartbeat. She heard it and then she had trouble finding it and then she said she thought she heard it a lot slower. So she wanted to hook me up to the sonogram machine to double-check and also have me sent over to the Labor and Delivery ward for monitoring. Her last words were "if it keeps happening, we'll just do a c-section." Bring on the panic and the tears. Just to remind you, it is April 1st and the baby isn't due until April 27th. Not like that is a huge difference in baby developmental land, but in my need for organization land, I freaked out. I didn't have the car seat installed! I hadn't packed a bag! I wasn't ready to have a baby that night!!!!

I walked over to the hospital (it's only 3 blocks), calling my husband, my mother, my sister all hysterical. I check in and they hook me up to the monitor in the triage room. Hubby shows up, mopping sweat off of his poor brow. This is the first time ever he's had an "emergency" with me or seen me in the hospital. He was freaking. 5 hours later, they let us go home. The baby was fine ("perfect! we wish all babies behaved like this!") but because my blood pressure, which had been normal at the doctor's office, had skyrocketed, and my feet are so swollen, they wanted to do blood work. It all came back fine, except they thought I might have a bacterial infection. Those results should be in today, when I go back to the doctor just to be sure I'm fine.

Now I am writing out my to-do list and have a full weekend planned with things that we need to do and get before baby really does arrive. It could be any time within the next 5 weeks!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, March 24, 2008

35 Weeks, WHOO HOOO!

So, it's nearing the end. 5 weeks to go. Crazy. I thought that pregnancy would be a really slow process, taking an eternity, but for me it has really flown by. I can remember the day of finding out I was pregnant and it is vivid in my mind. Now, all I can think is that 5 weeks could be 3 weeks. It could, of course, also be longer than that but just knowing that she could be here in less than a month is crazy scary. And exciting.

Her room is ready to be filled with whatever goodies come from the shower. I am about to do a load of wash, so that her baby clothes will be clean and ready for her to wear. (I still don't quite get why clothes need to be washed prior to wearing... I think it's a bit anal, to be honest, but if I don't do it, I won't hear the end of it from certain people who are anal about such things.)

My sleep has only been disrupted by trips to the bathroom and once in a while by a kicking baby. But I am getting enough zzzs so I can't complain about that. What I can complain about are my elephant ankles. They are hideous!!!! I don't recognize my feet and forget about wearing my favorite shoes. I am praying for a heat wave so I can break out the flip-flops. And my ankles feel bruised, which I find to be very odd and disconcerting. I see the doctor on Wednesday so maybe she can offer some insight. I have to remind myself that it's not much longer.

The rest of my complaints are as follows: nausea, difficulty bending over, can't lie on my back, crankiness, mood swings, hate maternity clothes, tiredness, difficulty doing things that I normally do and aches and pains in different parts of my body. And I do NOT like how I look in photographs!!!!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Heart Shaped Box

I've never been big on Valentine's Day. Though spying on my nephew at his daycare this morning, and watching him paste little white hearts onto a folded piece or red paper did bring back a few childhood memories of the day.

Memories of cubbies filled with little tiny cards (each child was mandated to give a card to everybody in the class so that nobody was left out), my name scribbled by a classmate onto the envelope. I remember doing the same... saving my favorite card for my childhood crush, a boy named Chris whom I loved dearly from kindergarten probably until graduation, and spelling his name "Crhis", then being upset that I got it wrong. I remember a boy that I didn't have a crush on giving me lifesavers, 8 packs to be exact that came in a little booklet. I was upset that they weren't from the boy of my dreams, but happy just the same to get candy from somebody. I remember making a heart figure with my mother out of construction paper, the arms and legs folded accordion-style out of large strips of paper so when it was hung, it looked like it was dancing. Those were the days when I was young, and probably wore red or pink to school.

As I got older, and more bitter, I would wear black in protest and laugh at the people who were getting giant bouquets delivered to their office, deeming them "cheesy". Thinking those bouquets were half the cost the day before and still just as nice. Perhaps I secretly hoped that somebody would be delivering me flowers that day, because it would have been nice to know somebody spent a ton of money on me just so that other people would be jealous. It never happened.

Now, I'm married, and Valentine's Day has no significance to me at all. We don't make reservations at a restaurant with a special prix fixe menu. We don't exchange gifts. Maybe a card, but no flowers. It's just not part of who we are as a couple. Last year, I tried to do something cute for my hubby. I got him a pedometer and some baby aspirin. For his heart. Because that is what the day is about, right? Hearts. Love. Maybe I was being a bit too literal, but I thought it was a great idea.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

3 months to go

One woman in the office has been boosting my ego daily now that I am pregnant. She constantly tells me how skinny, hip, good I look even in my "condition". Being a mother herself, she will laugh and say "enjoy it now" because I guess after the baby arrives, it will be sweatpants and ponytails for me. Personally, I think that my stomach has a really odd shape and my butt doesn't fill out any of my maternity pants, so I feel pointy-stomached and saggy-bottomed most days, hitching up my pants while I huff up and down the hallways of my office. I do love the compliments, though.

I had no idea how my body would change upon becoming pregnant. I was certain my thick-boned German/Norwegian stock would dominate the process. I expected my love handles to form a life-preserver around my waist. I expected a double-chin and a thick neck. Cellulite, stretch marks. Believe me, it hasn't been the most beautiful of transformations, but it also hasn't been as bad as I imagined. I feel out of breath after taking a few short steps, my thighs rub together uncomfortably, my stomach gets in the way of tying my shoes, my larger breasts are overshadowed by my weirdly-shaped tummy. But I can't complain too much. I haven't put on a lot of weight yet, which is what I was most worried about. I didn't want to gain too much too soon. I know the baby starts growing more towards the end so I'll probably make up for it then. I haven't experienced the lustrous locks or fast-growing fingernails that a lot of people told me would be a pregnancy perk, and I don't think I "glow" either. I feel like I need a facial badly. And I don't exercise anymore. I can't see my vagina, so have stopped getting it waxed. People still do not give up their seat on the subway, even though my back hurts when I stand for a while. I burp all the time. I haven't had any spotting or serious cramping or anything else that would be of concern. But my nose might start to bleed. Pros and cons, the entire process.

So if through it all, I am able to maintain a look that doesn't scream "MATERNITY", I will consider that a plus, in a sea of other negatives. The only advice I have for anyone who is pregnant with their first child is to expect the unexpected, because nothing is the way I thought it would be. And as much as this blog may be a very self-centered way of talking all about me, me, me, I want to record it all, to have a diary of the way things were before I had a new bunch of complaints about potty-training and sleepless nights. Hopefully I just won't be in sweatpants and a ponytail while typing those entries.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

To You Both

Baby Girl,
I feel you moving daily now. And today I am having little pains. Nothing serious, but I immediately worry that something is wrong with you. I am attached now. I smile each time I feel you. I tell your daddy "Here, feel your little baby girl move" and place his hand on my belly, over you. We talk about you nightly. What you'll look like. What you'll be like. The worry of being a parent hasn't started yet. Just little worries about the pangs I feel in my crotch or my side. Worries about the pain of childbirth. But you, safe and secure right now, not running around on the streets, or able to be kidnapped or hurt, I don't worry about. Not in that panic-y way I've heard parents describe. And maybe this is too much information for our little girl, but being pregnant with you, with his baby, makes me feel sexy. Seeing him as a soon-to-be father and seeing the progress he has made makes me love him more every day. I'm getting bigger and in a way I'm proud of it... "look at what my man did to me" I want to scream. But there is no need to scream. Everyone can see well enough themselves. My belly grows. It moves. And it's all because of you. How wonderful.