My confidence levels regarding this pregnancy have been less than stellar lately. I think I know why. Part of it is mental and physical exhaustion. I had been feeling slightly better and then Earl, up to his usual tricks, decided that wasn’t good enough. The past several days have left me feeling constantly queasy, headachey, crampy and generally crappy about myself. Brushing my teeth is a constant challenge as I seem to find myself gagging on my toothbrush, dry-heaving or hurling into the bathroom sink. Sigh. I’m thinking I may start taking 1 Benadryl at bedtime. When I was taking one a few weeks ago for some sinus stuff, I seemed to feel better in the mornings. I’m just so hesitant to take too much medicine. I take a lot of Tylenol. The headaches are excruciating. I know what I’m taking is deemed “safe” but I’m just not convinced, especially since we don’t know exactly what killed the twins. I mean, we’re about 95% sure, but that 5% leaves my mind making up a lot of other possibilities. The other problem as of late is the point I’m at in this pregnancy. I’m almost 14 1/2 weeks. Twice recently I’ve had trouble locating Earl’s heartbeat. Cue panic. The first time he was LOW…like down below my pelvic bone. The second time he was way off to the left-hand side. Let’s talk about my last pregnancy for a moment. At the u/s for the twins at 14 1/2 weeks, everything was fine. Exactly 4 weeks later, at 18 1/2 weeks, they were gone. The doc said they only measured about 16 1/2 weeks and I delivered them at exactly 19 weeks. So, the next 6 weeks or so of this pregnancy will mostly be a mental game. I have no reason to believe anything will go wrong with this pregnancy at this point. My doc has assured me over and over again that what happened to the twins was BECAUSE THEY WERE TWINS THAT SHARED A PLACENTA. Still…….We still haven’t told very many people about this baby. Hubs brought it up yesterday and I told him I’m still not ready. Honestly, the longer I go hiding it, the more I want to just start showing up to events with an infant. That obviously won’t work. At least not on everyone. I think I need to get past the 20 week anatomy scan. It gets me past the point I was with the twins and it’s a very detailed look at Earl and can determine if everything looks ok. I did feel slightly bad this weekend. We went to a birthday party for one of A’s friends and then I attended a party for a friend. I was surrounded by people who would have been happy for me and supportive no matter the outcome of this pregnancy, but I’m still not ready yet. Hubs tells me I don’t owe anyone an explanation, and he’s probably right.
On the other hand, I find myself preparing for the birth of this baby. I’ll be thinking about things in my head and all of a sudden realize, “Stop it! What if something happens! You’ll feel ridiculous for making these plans!” Hubs said yesterday that what would be really irresponsible would be to get to 35 weeks and have no plans at all. Again, he’s probably right. I’m thinking of hiring a doula for this birth. A’s birth was fine, but I can’t help but think that maybe I would have had a better first year if the very beginning wasn’t so freakin’ traumatic. At my 37 week appointment, I was dilated to a 3. I had no idea. No contractions, nothing. I was both thrilled and scared. My mom had been telling me constantly that my labor would be lightning fast because that’s how she was with both me and my sister. Hubs was out of town…LA to be exact. My doc said I’d be fine, there was no reason for him to rush home. Then she asked again when he’d be coming home. She wasn’t 100% confident either it seemed. At 38 weeks I started having regular, timeable contractions. They lasted all day. They were timeable all day long. At 9pm we called L&D to tell them I was contracting, but they weren’t particularly painful and didn’t seem to be gaining in intensity. They advised me to come in and get checked. The ended up admitting me due to the fact I had tested positive for Group B Strep and would need several bags of Penicillin through my IV before I delivered. I contracted on and off all night and was basically induced the next morning. She was born at 4:46pm that day after 2 1/2 hours of pushing. She was face-up and it took my doctor coming in (no one bothered to tell her I had been pushing for so long and she was rather pissed when she found out), spending 15 minutes with me, manually rotating her and out she came. The truth is, I had been hooked up to an IV for almost 24 hours at that point, been given Stadol to help me sleep and had an epidural that slipped out at one point. I was exhausted, over-whelmed, emotional and we had nursing issues from the beginning. She was jaundiced…which made her sleepy and uninterested in nursing…and I think the jaundice was partly from the distress of being stuck in my pelvis for 2 1/2 hours. I didn’t know what I was doing. Hubs didn’t know what he was doing. He did all the work after she was born since I was basically immobile. He changed all the diapers, brought her to me to feed, swaddled her, undressed and redressed her. Ugh…it wasn’t terrible, but it’s just not an experience I wish to have again if I can help it. I don’t want an induction. This time around, I’d like to stay home as long as possible. I really don’t want the pitocin, I don’t see why it would be necessary if you go into labor on your own. I’m MUCH less scared of the pain this time around. I’m not against an epidural, but I don’t want one right away like last time. I’ve been reading up on doulas and I like the idea of someone catering to ME. Someone supporting me and Hubs. Someone there to help ease the transition once the baby is born. Someone who is dedicated to me for several hours after the birth to help with nursing. (Sidebar: I ended up nursing A for a year, but it was HARD, so HARD in the beginning because of the jaundice.) Someone who is dedicated to making sure I’m ok, that my needs are met, before, during and after delivery. Someone who is level-headed, unemotional, and is able to take control emotionally and point us in the right direction. Also, my last encounter with L&D at that hospital was with the twins. I suspect there will be some deep-seated emotions that rear their ugly heads and I’d rather tell the story to my doula once and not have to tell every nurse that I meet. I dunno, I ran it by Hubs the other day and he seems receptive, we just need to talk about it a little bit more. I think both of us recognize we’d like a different experience this time around and this may be a way to achieve that. I also found myself looking at bedding sets yesterday. I’m starting to panic slightly since we have to completely re-do the guest room for A, get her moved and then re-do the nursery for Earl. We’ve done nothing. Nothing. And I’m starting to feel that time is getting away from us. Especially since the holidays are right around the corner.
I’ve been feeling really blah about myself lately. I know it’s because I don’t feel good. But, I also think it’s time for me to put some pampering on the agenda. I’m so far overdue for a pedicure it’s almost humorous. I could also use a manicure. I usually get them every 6-8 weeks, just to keep my cuticles trimmed. Other than that, I keep my nails short. In addition though, a spa day sounds so lovely. A nice facial and massage…ahhh. And a bikini wax. Not so much of an “ahhh” experience but a necessary one. I’m going to work on this and see what I can come up with.