Love this face

She’s so sweet, so precious and such a good baby. Plus, she has such an adorable face. I never want to forget her at this age. I wish I could capture every face she makes, every look, every smile, every grin, every throaty laugh or giggle, every precious moment I look down and catch her staring back at me with wonderment or a smile. She adores me and I adore her.


I got the birth I wanted!

Our 4th daughter was born on her due date, 3/16/2012 at 9:13pm.  Charlotte Claire weighed in at a whopping 9 pounds and is 20 inches long.  She has chubby, chubby cheeks, her sister’s hands and her daddy’s feet.  Lots of hair, but not as much as A had when she was born.  I haven’t had much time to get behind the camera, but I’ll be posting a few pics once I have an opportunity to photograph her.

I’m still trying to wrap my head around the last 24 hours.

As you all know, I’d been walking around for quite some time with a more than ready cervix. My regular doc was on vacation this week, so my 40 week appointment was scheduled on Thursday with the midwife, Lori.  I presented at 5 cms dilated, 75-80% effaced with a bulging bag of water.  Baby was still at a -3 station.  My doc was going to require me to be induced on Wednesday, 5 days past my due date but I opted to schedule the induction for Monday morning instead.  I’d done just about everything I could think of to encourage C to come on her own and felt that if she hadn’t made her appearance by Monday, waiting until Wednesday wasn’t going to change anything.  So I went home, feeling defeated, like my uterus was broken in some way.  Even Lori couldn’t believe I still hadn’t gone into labor on my own and could offer no explanation as to why.  I did have her do another membrane sweep as my one final effort to encourage labor on its own.

My mother in law had offered to take A for a few hours after her nap which was awesome.  I’d asked the Hubs to come home after my appointment because I was feeling some pretty intense cramping/contractions after my internal exam and membrane sweep.  I wasn’t sure if anything was happening, but I knew I felt off and would be more comfortable/relaxed having him at home.  We were scheduled to meet his family for dinner around 6pm anyways to celebrate Aunt D’s birthday.  I rested, we went for a walk and since it was so pretty outside, headed to Starbucks for a latte.  My patience had been non-existent for several days and dinner was no different.  I’m so thankful for a husband and family members that love my child and step in to help out.  Dinner seemed to take forever and A was getting antsy, but we made it through.  We got home and put A to bed…me reading several books to her and everything.  I was able to fall asleep but woke up around 1ish on Thursday morning.  I just couldn’t seem to sleep so I headed out to the couch with Erika and we watched bad tv together.  Well, she slept, soundly, and I watched bad tv. I headed back to bed around 4 only to awaken around 4:30 to some pretty intense contractions.  The contractions weren’t new, but they were definitely more intense than anything else I’d felt up to that point and were coming at fairly regular intervals…4-5 minutes lasting about 70-90 seconds.  I woke up Hubs and told him I was going to take a shower.  He jumped out of bed and basically ran to the bathroom.  I was like, “What are you doing?”  He thought I told HIM to take a shower.  I find it humourous he jumps out of bed from a dead sleep and follows my command.  Anyways, I took a shower and he starts packing.  Sigh.  I was convinced this would be another false alarm and he was making me antsy by getting so worked up and excited.  After my shower I told him I really wanted to try to sleep so he let me go back to bed.  The contractions were still coming, and still intense, but they were all over the place.  Sometimes 4 minutes apart, sometimes 10.  Some of them I felt in my back, some I felt just tightness and several felt like a sharp pain right in the middle of my abdomen.  By the time A woke up, and I had something else to focus on, they’d pretty much fizzled out and I.WAS.PISSED.  We went for a walk, I tried resting, I tried squats, I spent a lot of time in the bathroom feeling like I had to poop with nothing happening.  And I peed.  A lot.  Constantly.  Monica called from my doctor’s office confirming my induction date and time on Monday and while I had her on the phone I mentioned the early morning contractions I’d been having.  She basically told me to go in if I wanted, it was unlikely they’d send me home.  We made the decision to go ahead and head in.  I wasn’t about to spend the next 3 days completely wiped out from contractions that weren’t going anywhere.  I was done.  Hubs got A all packed (I have no clue how she may be dressed over the next few days) and my mother in law came over to pick her up.  I tried to tell her good-bye, but she was all too excited to go to grandma’s house.  I fought back tears as I hugged my only little girl good-bye for the last time.  We took our time, got a few last minute things packed, picked up a few things around the house, left the dishes and the laundry for my mom and headed out.  I wanted to get my car washed.  Don’t ask me why (it’s storming now, by the way) but it’s something I wanted done.  Then Hubs wanted lunch which was fine with me but I didn’t feel like eating.  Once in the car, I started to have some more contractions but they didn’t seem very intense.  After lunch we headed back home to pick up copies of my Medical Power of Attorney and Directive to Physician.  I’ve delivered twice before and I knew we needed these things, but STILL managed to forget them.  We finally arrived at the hospital around 2ish only to find a waiting line in Triage.  W.T.F.  First of all, I’ve never experienced Triage before, second of all, a wait?  Really?  I, of course, don’t look like the other people in triage.  One lady is pathetically hanging off a wheelchair and no, she can’t walk to the exam room when she’s asked.  She also has her 5 other kids with her.  The other lady is clearly dealing with some contractions and the 2 small bags they’re carrying make us look like a freak show.  I, on the other hand, am cracking jokes with my husband and we’re both a little bewildered by this whole Triage thing.  Anyways…get checked in only to have the nurse ask us, I sh*t you not, “What we’re here for?”  Now, let me clear up any confusion.  This is L&D Triage.  In the L&D wing.  Lady, I’m pretty sure we’re here because of the whole we think we’re having a baby thing.  I actually told the second nurse that asked me that I’d broken my toe.  That’s why I was there.  I mean really people.  Really.  So I’m hooked up to monitors and I’m actually showing some pretty nice contractions on my own and baby’s heart rate is really high.  I’m checked, still at a 5 and 80% effaced.  They call the doc on-call and to make a long story short, leave it up to me.  I can go home and wait it out, or head to L&D to have my water broken.  After several weeks of doctor’s visits, I knew I was either going to have my water broken for me or end up on a pitocin drip.

I chose to head to L&D.  I get checked in, IV line placed, blood pressure cuff attached.  Pulse ox monitor attached and monitors on my belly.  Damn it!  Here I am, completely attached to the bed and I haven’t even been induced yet!  I was determined though.  I didn’t want to be difficult, especially since my regular doc was out and the on-call doc certainly could have sent me home, but I really didn’t want this experience.  The on-call doc came in, and she was fantastic, as were my nurses.  Seriously, I keep having the best medical care.  She talked to me about my options, knew I wanted a low-intervention birth and was totally cool with it.  We agreed to break my water and let me labor on my own for a few hours.  If I didn’t make enough progress, we’d start a low dose of Pitocin and go from there.  I said great and out came the crochet hook.  This was around 5:30-5:45pm.  LOTS of fluid came out.  And I immediately felt a sense of pressure release.  They wanted me to stay in bed for about 20-30 minutes to give C time to come down a little.  They didn’t want all her fluid coming out.  After about 20 minutes, I was terribly uncomfortable and I needed to get out of the bed.  I paged my nurse to un-hook everything so I could use the bathroom.  Once I was done in the bathroom I found myself swaying with each contraction.  The idea of getting back into bed was appalling.  My nurse said she was going to check if we could do intermittent monitoring.  Yay!  I didn’t even have to ask for it!  I was free from everything except an IV drip.  And I was contracting.  A lot.  Heavily.  All on my own.  Hubs was watching the contractions on the monitor and I wasn’t getting a break in-between them at all.  It was intense, but I managed.  I had discussed my pain-relief options with my nurse before we broke my water.  I knew I didn’t want narcotics and told her how I wasn’t thrilled with my first delivery because I was so numb and so out of it.  My choice to have this conversation early proved to be a wise move.

My nurse was back at 6:30 to do the monitoring and at that point, I asked for the epidural.  May I just say, Hubs was awesome at talking me through each contraction.  He stroked my back, told me what a rock star I was.  I was able to sway/breath/moan through them but man, it sure did feel like I was being sawed in half.  I also had a towel between my legs and towards the end honestly couldn’t tell if I was peeing on it or if it was fluid leaking out.  Not sure I really cared.  It took a few minutes to get a read on the baby but once she got the information she needed, off the nurse went to find the anesthesiologist.  Not sure how long she was gone, not long, but it kind of felt like forever.  The anesthesiologist already knew my concerns and what I wanted when he walked in the room thanks to my earlier conversation with my nurse and it took him 7 minutes (from the time he walked in the door) to place my epidural.  Took a few minutes to start working but I was finally able to converse a few minutes after it was placed.  It was great, I still felt pressure, could move my legs and toes, but the intense pain wasn’t there.  It was about 7, our new nurse had just shown up (turns out, she was one of the nurses when I delivered A…how cool is that?) and she was getting briefed on our chart.  She checked me…holy crap, I was at 9 cms and 0 station.  People, I went from 5 and -3 to 9 and 0 in under 2 hours.  Without drugs.  No wonder it felt like she was going to cut me in half.  I got in bed and was finally able to relax a bit.  Hubs and I were supposed to get some rest, but we were both so shocked I’d progressed so quickly and that I’d made it that far unmedicated!  I was feeling a lot of pressure/pain in the back of my legs but I was hesitant to get any more meds as I didn’t want to be loopy, so I decided against pressing the little button for more drugs.  Then the shaking started.  It didn’t take long for our nurse to come in stating the monitors we’re showing signs the baby needed to be checked.  Sure enough, I was at 10 and a +1.  Doc was called and I was put into a froggy-type position to help bring C down even further.  Our nurse left to get everything needed for delivery and I asked for a mirror.  I sprung this one on the Hubs.  I wanted to see but didn’t really want to discuss with him how he felt.  I started pushing at 9pm.  Baby C arrived 13 minutes later and I was totally able to feel all the pressure I needed to push with each contraction.  I think I had maybe 6 contractions and she was out?  It was so amazing to watch her come out, to be aware of the feeling of her crowning and exiting my body.  The only people in our room were the doctor and 2 nurses.  It was calm, dim, quiet and absolutely amazing.  I was able to push myself up and watch as the doc suctioned her, clamped her cord and had Hubs cut the cord.  Then she was placed directly on my chest where she proceeded to not make a peep.  She just snuggled.  Kept her eyes closed.  I had a 2nd degree tear and required some stitching, but it was all done while the Hubs and I peered at this amazing new gift on my chest.  The doc seemed to take her time getting the placenta out and took her time on the stitches, which I apppreciate.  If you’re counting, my water was broken about 5:45 and she was born at 9:13.  Yes…it would seem subsequent labors move along much more quickly.  I held onto her for what seemed like forever, and finally relinquished her to the nurse to weigh her and clean her up a bit.  (I had to laugh at my nurse that wanted to clarify that I initially wanted C placed directly on my chest after she was born, goo and all.  Those were the words she used…lol.  But yes, I wanted her, goo and all, right away.)  So after she was weighed and cleaned up a bit, she was brought back to me and I nursed her.  She latched on right away and Hubs snapped a picture of it.  I love that picture, it shows me, looking like I actually have a clue as to what’s going on this time around.  Much different than with A when I look completely bewildered in most of those early photos.  As much complaining as I did about C not coming early, I will take the 40+ weeker any day.  She’s much bigger and stronger which has made nursing her a breeze.  She also just seems happier and more content, probably because she got to cook long enough.  Or maybe because my life is so different now compared to when I was pregnant with A.

My recovery has been amazing.  In a way, I feel that it has taken me slightly longer to heal, probably due to her size, but I’ve been much more comfortable than I was after having A.  I’ve also been a thousand times better emotionally.  So much so that it has me thinking I was probably dealing with some post-partum depression after having A and just didn’t know it.  I’ve only had a few crying episodes and I generally feel like myself.  C’s calm disposition has carried over from the hospital.  She’s a generally happy and calm baby.  She’s a pretty good sleeper too, so long as a good chunk of the night is spent with her in my lap while I sleep in the recliner.  We’ve been thrilled with A’s response to her new sister.  She was smitten in the hospital and seems to be adjusting well.  The biggest issue isn’t so much the baby as it is my time that is now heavily devoted to C.  Things overall are going well though.  I’m sure we’ll hit some speedbumps along the way, but so far so good.

Hubs went back to work on Monday, he’d taken 2 weeks off which was great family time.  He leaves town tomorrow.  I’m sad about it.  We had some stuff happen during the past 2 weeks, that I’ll no doubt write about at some point, and, well, let’s just say that nobody in this family wants him traveling.  I was on my own yesterday, managed to take both girls to the bank and grocery store.  And survived.  Then again this morning I was on my own to get everyone up, ready, dressed and out the door to drop A off at preschool.  Then, it being Tuesday and all, C and I headed to Target.  Since Hubs is headed out of town, my mom is coming to stay with me for a few days.  I’m actually looking forward to it.  Not only will the help be nice, but it will be nice to spend time with my mom that is longer than a few hours one evening after work.  Plus, she’ll most likely handle all the meals, do some laundry and insist I rest when I can.

Still here

I’m still here. I’m still pregnant. I’m still shocked I’m still here and still pregnant.  My official due date is this Friday and this little girl is quickly running out of time to arrive on her own.  My 40 week appointment is Thursday and I ‘ll be requesting another membrane sweep in hopes of moving things along.  Each day that goes by makes me feel that my body won’t do what it’s supposed to do (that it’s failing me, again) and my confidence wanes even further.  If she doesn’t show up on her own before then, I’ll have a scheduled induction either this coming Monday or Wednesday (we’re still tossing dates around).  As much as I DO NOT want to be induced, there are other factors at play and eventually, I’ll have to give in.  Everything seems to be ready and in order, I even broke down and mopped the floors today.  I’d been putting it off because, well, I hate to mop and also because I figure my mom needed SOMETHING to do while I was in the hospital.  I have contractions during the day and especially at night, but they never seem to intensify or go anywhere – the only thing they do at night is make it really difficult for me to sleep.  It’s beyond frustrating.  I booked myself a prenatal massage for tomorrow evening, I’m excited for a lower back massage – that seems to be the thing that hurts the most.  I’m also excited to lay on my belly and remove the pressure from my lower back for 50 glorious minutes.  For the record, none of the old wives tales work.  I haven’t tried them all, but I’ve tried a bunch.  And if I have to unpack one more thing from my hospital bag, I’m going to cry.

Push Presents

This is a funny story, I promise. But first, a pregnancy update:

I, for one, cannot believe I am still pregnant.  My husband cannot believe I’m still pregnant.  My girlfriend, who’s a nurse, cannot believe I’m still pregnant.  But alas, here I am, most definitely, still pregnant.  My appointment on Tuesday with the midwife was interesting to say the least.  My blood pressure was too high which landed me a “resting” period to try to get it to go down.  There were also traces of protein in my urine.  Cue slight freak-out from me because I figure I’m only moments away from being walked across the skyway and admitted for an immediate induction.  Hubs was at least an hour away and I really didn’t tell A goodbye the way I would have wanted to when I dropped her off at school that morning.  My blood pressure was taken again and it came down slightly, but not by much.  I’ve had no (substantial) swelling, no headaches or dizzy spells and I’ve generally been feeling fine.  The midwife came in, took a look at my file, noted that I’m practically dead on a normal day (BP of 112/60 is about my norm) but decided that I didn’t have enough classic signs to admit me right away.  Instead, they took some blood to check my liver and kidney functions.  She also stripped my membranes, definitely more invasive than a normal cervical check, but not the excruciating pain most people talk about.  She confirmed I am now a good 4 cms and she was able to stretch me to a 5.  She also confirmed I’m about 80% effaced.  W.  T.  F.  The sweep definitely brought on some steady contractions yesterday afternoon, but about the time I decided to start timing them, the little boogers up and left.  Leaving me, well, not in a good place and slightly devastated.  I’ve had quite a bit of, uh, “discharge” since my appointment and I spoke with Monica this morning to confirm everything was going ok.  My blood work came back totally normal and the “discharge” is perfectly normal as the cervix continues to efface (which makes me think I basically have no cervix left…not sure what’s keeping this child in at this point).  Lovely.  I also officially turned down my opportunity for an elective induction on Friday; which makes me both proud of myself (for resisting temptation) and kind of makes me want to hang my head and cry.

Anyways, let’s talk about push presents.  I think the idea of push presents is a fairly new phenomenon and depending upon where you live, may or may not be something you’ve ever encountered.  Traditional push presents are jewelry, and believe me, if the Hubs presented me with some brand new, large, diamond stud earrings, you wouldn’t hear me complain.  Problem is, neither of us would EVER make that kind of a purchase without consulting the other and well, I control the money around here so he’d have a REALLY hard time getting that one past me.  Someday he’ll surprise me with new earrings, just not right now.  I’m not really sure I believe in push presents.  I mean, it’s a really nice thought and all, but the whole idea of expecting a gift for having a baby seems a little odd to me.  I LOVE getting gifts, don’t get me wrong, but in this case it just seems like you’d be setting yourself up for disappointment.  When I purchased Julian back in December, there were several accessories I wanted to go with him but I wasn’t going to buy everything all at once.  The first accessory on my list was a new camera bag.  I really don’t have anywhere to store Julian, and all my lenses don’t fit into the camera bag I DO have.  I was looking for something to safely STORE my stuff in as well as something more functional to use when out and about.  Since I do the monthly budgeting around here, I noticed we had some extra this month and decided to buy myself a push present.  Not because I believe in them, but because it was a perfect excuse to buy myself the camera bag.  So I put it in the budget and ordered the Lowepro Sling Shot 202 AW for myself.  That night, I informed Hubs that he bought me a push present.  He looked at me with a bewildered look on his face, which I expected since I honestly never expected anything from him.  He asked me what I’d ordered and I told him.  Turns out, he had intended to buy me the exact same bag, as a push present!  I know he was being honest because he’d asked me about using some extra money and since the guy never does that, I didn’t think much of it.  I figured he’d come across a few books or who knows what, that he wanted.  Anyways, I felt bad because he never and I mean NEVER gets to surprise me but at the same time I find it incredibly hilarious since I hadn’t discussed this bag with him since December and hadn’t brought up the concept of the push present.  On the other hand though, I’m thrilled to be getting a bag to safely store all my gear in and I’m excited to have something I feel more confident taking out and about.  I tried to tell him about a few other accessories that I would like, but he quickly informed me I wasn’t getting anything else.  Bummer.  Staying true to form though, I’ll eventually need an additional camera bag/purse to use in a day to day, more casual setting.  I’ll bet he didn’t even know these existed…

So, maybe someday soon I’ll actually be able to accept my push present, from the Hubs, bought my me, but mentally bought by him.  Until I have this baby though, no push present for me.  Somebody send me some labor vibes.  Please.  I really want my bag.

38 plus 1

Well, I’m officially the most pregnant I’ve ever been.  I delivered A at 38 weeks exactly and today marks 38 weeks and 1 day of this pregnancy.  The past few days I’ve been feeling quite a few contractions and I’ve been fairly nauseated also.  I figured my body was prepping itself for labor and even went as far as telling my Hubs I was calling my symptoms early labor…that could last for a few hours or for many, many days.  My doctor’s appointment yesterday confirmed my thoughts as I’m 2-3 cms dilated, about 70% effaced and Baby C has started to scoot downwards.  Based on my conversation with my doc yesterday, I’m a walking time bomb.  I could truly go into labor at any time.  I have visions of my water breaking in public and I’ve decided to avoid upholstered furniture whenever possible.  However, she did start talking induction next Friday at 39 weeks.  Apparently she’s going to be out of town the week of Spring Break so if I don’t go into labor on my own before then, she’s more than happy to induce me early Friday, break my water around 8am and most likely have a baby before 5pm.  These are her words.  She also said she wouldn’t even consider it an induction at this point and more of an augmentation since I’m already in the early stages of labor.  I really don’t want an induction for purely convenience sake (I don’t have a problem with it at all, I was just hoping for a different experience this time around), but at the same time, I’m not entirely thrilled about not having my doctor there.  I trust her.  If everything goes according to plan, I won’t really need the doctor to do anything but catch the baby on the way out, but what if something happens?  I know she fully trusts her partners, and I’m even able to request another doctor or her midwife (I’ve already decided on the midwife) but I dunno.  We’re taking the weekend to talk and think about it.  I called back after leaving my appointment yesterday and spoke to sweet, calm Monica because I forgot to ask about a membrane sweep while I was there.  She agreed it was worth a shot so I’m scheduled for one on Tuesday morning with the midwife.  This works out well because it’s low intervention; it’s only going to work if my body is ready.  If it’s going to send me into labor, it will most likely happen within 24 hours which allows me to still deliver with my doc.  If it doesn’t, it still gives me time to get on the schedule for an induction on Friday.  Also, if we decided against the induction, I’ve been able to see the midwife again (her name is Lori) so she’ll know I’ve asked for her to deliver Baby C and we can chat a little about my plans.  I figure it’s worth a shot and Monica says Lori is REALLY good at membrane sweeps.  How’s that for something to add to your resume?

It’s supposed to be beautiful here this weekend and we’ll spend the weekend doing yard work and getting some last minute housework done.  I assume the Hubs and I will try to find some time to get jiggy with it too, since my doc swears that’s really the only “at home” remedy to help with labor.  I suppose I should also pack my hospital bag, which I STILL haven’t done.  Hubs DID get the actual bag out for me last night though, so we’re making progress.  Maggie has her annual checkup this morning and I think that’s the last errand on my list of stuff to do before Baby C gets here.  I don’t exactly know where my list is…I actually have several going at once.  She’s been coughing some so I’m slightly on edge about getting bad news, but she was coughing last year too, and it turned out to be allergies.  I’m crossing all my crossables that A is in a better mood today.  She’s been a force to be reckoned with this week and I really hate the thought of having to leave her suddenly for a few days to have a baby while she and I aren’t getting along.  I’m thinking she’ll probably get booted outside with the dogs for the majority of the day so hopefully it will be good for her soul.  And now, I think it’s time for a cup of coffee on the patio.



Week 37

I hit 37 weeks last Friday.  My appointment with my doc went well.  Blood pressure is great, fetal heart tones sound perfect, I was measuring about 38 weeks (which is still perfect for a 2nd/3rd timer), Baby C is still head down and I’ve even made a little progress in the cervical department.  I even worked up the courage to have a brief (very brief) discussion with my OB about my desire to avoid the epidural as long as possible and my desire to not be tied to a bed the whole time I was in the hospital.  She said that was fine, I just needed to request intermittent monitoring and that she would give them permission to do so.  Yay.  So, on the medical side, things are great.

Then there’s the REST of pregnancy at week 37.  I don’t really want to complain.  I’m thrilled to be at this point, obviously, and I’m not even feeling super anxious or ready for Baby C to make her appearance.  I figure I’ve still got a week or so left.  But honestly?  I’d forgotten just how tough these last few weeks are.  Pregnancy is generally kind to me (except that whole stillbirth thing)…I don’t put on a lot of weight and I don’t seem to have to deal with the majority of complaints that I hear from other pregnant women.  I keep comparing this pregnancy to my pregnancy with A and while there are a lot of similarities, I’m noticing some differences here at the end.  I started my leave from work at 37 weeks when I was pregnant with A.  Barring some financial emergency during my leave, I didn’t plan to return to work so the majority of my pregnancy was spent focusing on getting out of a job I didn’t particularly love.  My focus was different than it is this time around.  So I was done working at 37 weeks, which felt AWESOME, and I had her at 38 weeks exactly.  It just didn’t leave much time to wallow in self-pity and moan and grumble about pregnancy woes.  Plus I was 3 years younger.  Doesn’t seem like a lot, but man, 3 years sure does seem to make a big difference in the pregnancy world.  So anyways, I’m just generally uncomfortable this time around.  Baby C is quietest when I’m up moving around or laying on my back (I know, I know, a big no-no) she seems to do the Elaine dance (Seinfeld anyone?) at night when I try to settle down on my side.  It’s like I’m having uterus spasms or something.  Not generally painful, but Baby C likes to hit me in my hips…A never did that.  Baby  C also spends a great bit of time with some sort of appendage wedged in my ribcage.  My ribs are actually sore to the touch…odd.  I’m also starting to swell a bit, nothing crazy, but enough that I just had to switch to a plain silver wedding band and tragically, can’t wear my Aggie Ring. I’m more upset about the Aggie Ring.  I’m also just not sleeping.  I love sleep.  LOVE IT.  Right now I’m logging a solid 5 hours, but toss and turn the rest of the night.  Since Hubs isn’t traveling right now, I refrain from grunting when I try to roll over at night, but believe me, if he wasn’t here, it would sound like a pig farm in my room at night.  Baby C is still really high and I figure she’s long.  And I have a short torso, sooooooo, that just doesn’t leave a whole lot of room.  Things just hurt this time around that didn’t hurt last time.  I’m not sure what to do about it except just deal.  I was REALLY uncomfortable last night, more so than usual.  Hubs kept asking me if I was ok and I finally asked him to stop asking me.  I don’t want to complain.  Just let me be and I’ll be fine.  She’ll come when she’s ready, I’m really in no hurry and I REALLY want her to come on her own.  I don’t want to be induced.  It’s a good feeling this time around, to be ok with her coming when she’s ready.  With A, I hit 37 weeks and was like, “Ok, you can come out now!”  I tell people all the time that my best advice is to really enjoy those last few weeks because you have no idea how big of a change you’re getting ready to endure.  So I’m working really hard on enjoying these last few weeks, pregnancy woes and all.  I got together with a group of girlfriends on Sunday evening at a local restaurant for a small shower.  It was super sweet of them to love on me and while I didn’t expect any gifts at all, I got a few new things for Baby C…including a handmade Aggie teddy bear and Aggie blanket, which A promptly confiscated and claimed as her own.  I’m thrilled that Baby C FINALLY has something special of her own.  Well, sort of, as soon as we can get A to part with them.

I can tell we’re getting close as my “nesting” has reared its ugly head.  In odd ways though, for example: went to Target today to buy body wash and shaving cream.  I noticed we were getting low this morning…heaven forbid we run out at an inopportune time because my husband is clearly incapable of getting a few toiletries from Target and I guess I’m going to be chained to my house?  I squeezed in an eye appointment today so I could refill my contact prescription and get my glasses adjusted.  I also decided I absolutely HAD to get a haircut this week; thankfully my guy was able to get me in on Thursday evening.  I just had one not long ago, but it feels poofy and I had a slight panic attack this morning thinking about how I was going to get my hair cut with an infant here.  I scheduled a vet appointment for Maggie on Saturday morning and I’ve decided to tackle the cleaning of our master shower…probably today at some point.  My freezer is stocked with frozen meals and for some reason I have 3 huge boxes of nursing pads.  Now, none of these tasks/things seem unusual…it’s the panicky feeling of not getting them done that is my clue my head may not be working right.  Especially since my house is basically a disaster zone and I STILL haven’t packed my hospital bag.  At least my glasses won’t be crooked and I’ll have good hair.  Hubs is nesting too…only he’s decided that this weekend he’s going to give our yard a complete overhaul.  We have a big yard.  Go for it buddy.

Here’s a conversation I never thought I’d have…

First, a pregnancy update.  I had my 36 week check-up yesterday (even though I won’t technically be 36 weeks until tomorrow) and I’m very thankful that my doc was able to confirm Baby C is finally head down.  It looks as though I’m able to table my concerns about a scheduled c-section due to a breech baby.  Weekly internal exams started yesterday and I’ve made basically no progress and Baby C is still riding high…which I kind of knew based on the butt and occasional foot in my ribcage.  I go back again next Friday, which is the same appointment with A I learned I was already 3 cm dilated.  We’ll see what happens over the next 10 days.  While I’d like for Baby C to bake as long as she needs to, I’ll be thrilled with some amount of progress at my next appointment.

The Hubs’ travel schedule has been INSANE.  Even he says so.  He was home Monday and Tuesday though and he came home from work Monday night with flowers for me and A.  He got A a potted Hyacinth plant that smells wonderful.  It’s in her room now, but we’ll put it in the ground eventually and I’ll do my best to keep it alive.  For me, he layed a dozen dark pink/light pink roses in my lap.  I was lounging in bed when he got home…no big surprise there.  After a few minutes he said, “My only request is that you take 2 of the roses and…” then he gestured to the top of our chest of drawers where the urn containing the twins’ ashes sits amongst our wedding photos.  I was speechless for a few minutes.  And I was surprised…which is almost impossible to do.  The fact that he even had to think about getting flowers for the twins is heartbreaking, yet, at the same time, why wouldn’t he think to get ALL his girls flowers on Valentine’s Day?  The whole conversation caught me off guard and made me equally sad and proud at the same time.  On one hand, there’s the realization there is no ending to the twins’ story.  There will always be Christmas, Valentine’s Day, their birthday…days that are special and meaningful to us where we want to honor their memory and the part they’ve played (and will continue to play) in our lives.  And I was immensely proud to be married to a man who is so very thoughtful and unafraid to show his love and devotion to ALL his children, even those that didn’t join our family in the way we had intended.  It made my heart swell; one of those “I think I just fell in love with you all over again” moments.  And if that wasn’t enough emotion for one evening, A pipes up and says, “I sure wish Baby C had a flower.”  Oh, the logic and the love of a 3-year-old.  And so, of my 12 roses, 2 are in a vase in our bedroom for Megyn and Whitney, 1 is in a vase for Baby C in her room and the remaining 9 are in a vase on the kitchen table.  And I’m okay with that.

twins' flowers

Megyn and Whitney's roses

c's flower

Baby C's rose, waiting for her in her room.

a's flowers

A's flowers

I’m braving a bikini wax today.

I’m no waxing virgin.  I’ve done everything from eyebrows to bikini to brazilian for years now and frankly, I don’t find it to be that bad.  The lady I go to came highly recommended by a few people and she’s great…which makes a big difference.  Not only is she skilled and quick, but we chit-chat the whole time I’m laying there in a slightly compromising position while she spreads hot wax on my nether-regions and rips my pubic hair out.  While not at the top of my list of fun things to do, waxing doesn’t normally scare me.  It does today though.  You see, I’ve apparently been doing SUCH a good job practicing my Hypnobirthing relaxation techniques that some intruder came into my bedroom, acquired a pair of steel-toed boots and kicked me, repeatedly, in the crotch.  I had no idea this was happening (since I was so relaxed and all) and wasn’t aware of the damage that had been done until the next morning when I could barely get out of bed and hobble to the bathroom.  It was the kind of pain where you expect blood, bruising and swelling, only upon closer inspection (not that close, really, I’m 35 weeks pregnant after all), everything looked fine.  Obviously a more likely scenario is that my body is like, “Oh, yeah, I remember this.  Let me go ahead and stretch those ligaments and open up that pelvis ahead of time for ya.”  More likely, yes, but not NEAR as much fun to tell people.  Or perhaps there’s a head sitting in my pelvis and pressing down on my cervix.  A girl can dream.   So while the pain is a little better than it was a few days ago, I fear the pain that is still there might make this upcoming bikini wax a little nightmarish.  It really doesn’t matter though, because I’m apparently growing a rainforest down under and I can’t accept it any longer.

I went out this past weekend and spent what I consider to be a ridiculous amount of money on nursing attire.  I needed nursing bras, a few nursing tanks and wanted some nursing pajamas for the hospital, around the house and basically the next year of my life.  This stuff, rarely, if ever, goes on sale so I was forced to pay full-price, except for the pj’s, which were buy 1 get 1 free.  For some reason, the last time around, I decided I didn’t need nursing bras or breast pads or any of that fancy-schmancy nursing attire.  And I didn’t for a few days.  Until my milk came in.  I was perfectly fine in the hospital fighting the cups of my bra down so I could feed A.  Once I got home I pretty much went braless and it took me days, DAYS, to discover that when A nursed on one side I was, quite literally, spewing milk from the other side.  I could not for the life of me figure out why my shirt and boppy were wet…and why my child’s clothes were wet.  The story I love to tell is my 20-something sister sitting on the couch with me while I’m nursing…I have no shirt on and no bra (I lack some of the basic ins and outs of modesty people…especially around my family) and I’m squirting milk out of one boob.  My poor sister…I’m pretty sure I scarred her for life.  (She also sanitized the pieces of my breast pump for me.  The hilarious images of her boiling my breast pump parts in the kitchen and removing them from the water with tongs still makes me smile.)  Thankfully she had enough decency to say, “Um, can I get you a towel or something?”  I was too busy laughing to answer her.  I found it incredibly funny at the time, and still do.  I had tears rolling down my face I thought it was so funny.  I still didn’t get it though.  I remember looking down as the photographer was leaving after A’s newborn portraits and seeing a wet spot about the size of a nickel on my shirt.  I was like, “What the hell is that?”  She was 2 weeks old at this point and I STILL hadn’t figured out my boobs were leaking.  I wasn’t totally ignorant either.  I took a class and read several books specific to breastfeeding.  For some reason though, I figured the rules didn’t apply to me.  I don’t remember when I finally decided I needed some nursing bras and breast pads, but it took waaaaaay too long for me to come to that conclusion.  I’m set this time around though.  Except for one thing…

The Hubs got onto me last night because all my new, ‘spensive nursing attire is still sitting in the shopping bags.  I can’t bring myself to take the tags off, wash it and toss a few things into a bag for the hospital.  I don’t mean to be difficult, I just have this mental block and every time I think about doing something like packing a freaking hospital bag, I convince myself I still have plenty of time.  It’s a defense mechanism and the real reason is that I’m afraid to pack a bag with nursing clothes, a baby blanket, a stuffed animal for Baby C and her coming home outfit; all this stuff that indicates I ACTUALLY EXPECT to bring home a living, breathing baby.  It’s so weird, but I’ve promised him I would at least wash the new clothes today so we’ll see if I make any progress.  A and I spent several hours yesterday afternoon with my mom.  Both my parents and my in-laws wanted to purchase something substantial for Baby C.  My in-laws bought the new glider (wonder when it’s going to be ready?) so that left a new breast pump or a new diaper bag for my parents to purchase.  I don’t need a new diaper bag.  I have an INSANELY expensive one that I adore but I WANTED a new one for this baby.  I found a gorgeous new one yesterday that my mom happily purchased for me.  I’m excited about it but it’s still sitting in my bedroom.  Haven’t even taken it out of its beautiful bag and dust cover.  I just can’t.  Not yet.  The pricey diaper bags have ALWAYS been my thing.  I used to joke with the Hubs that if I ever decided I wanted to have kids, he was going to have to agree to a $1500 diaper bag.  He thought I was joking.  No he didn’t, he knew I was serious.  I didn’t spend quite that much the first time around, and my mom only spent a fraction of that, but there’s something about making such a large, luxurious,  intentional for Baby C purchase that has me a little freaked out.  Hubs told me last night he doesn’t think I’ve actually wrapped my head around the idea that we’re HAVING ANOTHER BABY.  I think he’s right, but I’m not sure how to fix it.  I’m going through all the motions, I’m excited about meeting her, preparing for labor and delivery and finishing up her nursery, yet, I’m not sure I’ve actually grasped that we’re leaving our home with 1 little girl and coming home with 2 little girls.  And my latest irrational, pregnancy-induced, hormonal fear?  That Baby C will be born a “he” instead of a “she”.  Pretty sure the Hubs wants out at this point.  He can’t take the crazy much longer.

So, if you hear screaming from deep within the heart of Texas in the next hour…no worries, it’s just a much too vain pregnant lady getting her lady bits waxed in an attempt not to appear as a freak show for all the nurses and doctors that will see her most treasured body parts over the coming weeks.  And blah, blah, blah, they’re professionals that see it everyday, they don’t care…yeah, I know.  I’ve heard it all.  But I like to think they too can at least appreciate the effort.

What a great day.

Gosh, I had a truly wonderful day today.  While nothing extraordinary happened, I thought it would be nice to blog about a lazy, uninspired day that was really great.  Being a mother is awesome, and I rarely find something to complain about with regards to being a mother; but parenting is hard folks.  Anyone who tells you otherwise is either lying or not doing it correctly.  So talking about the good times, as a parent, seems like a good idea.

Hubs had a 7am flight to catch, meaning he left the house at 5am, meaning he was up at 4am, which also means I was up at 4am.  I used to be able to sleep right through his getting ready in the mornings, not real sure what’s going on right now.  Anyways, after he left around 5am, I went back to sleep until 8:30!  Between 7 and 7:30 is the normal wake-up time around here.  I had asked him to put Goose in her kennel so she wouldn’t wake us up and it worked!  Both A and I snoozed until 8:30.  I needed it and so did she thanks to 2 late nights in a row.  We got up, had breakfast and to top it all off, it’s been a relatively successful potty training day around here!  She got enough stickers on her chart to get a new Beanie Baby (thanks to a large stash I had from high-school when it was all the rage to collect them) and went all day without an accident.  I’m admittedly kind of half-assing the whole potty training thing, but she keeps waking up dry in the mornings and holding it for long periods of time so I don’t feel like I can completely ignore this opportunity.  She still fights me to sit on the potty and always whines and, occasionally, screams and cries, but she’s just so proud of herself after she’s done and she’s so excited to put a sticker on her chart.  The Beanie Babies help too…she gets one after she gets 5 stickers…even though the LAST thing we need in this house is more stuffed animals of any kind.  Oh well.  I decided to give her Cheerios for breakfast.  In a bowl, with milk.  She loved it and did really well with her spoon.  After breakfast we watched tv.  We laid in bed for a while watching cartoons and I would occasionally get up and do something productive.  After a few shows we sang some songs and did some puzzles.  It was about time for lunch where she proceeded to eat all of her peanut butter sandwich (hold the jelly), all her pretzels and her entire cup of applesauce.  Mealtimes are normally a battle in our house so I was really pleased with both breakfast and lunch!  I was able to easily put her down for a nap and had some nice down time to eat my own lunch, take a shower and re-install her car seat in my car since I’d taken it out to wash the liner over the weekend.  I ended up waking her up after 2 1/2 hours because if I let her go these days, she’ll snooze for 3-4 hours.  That doesn’t bode very well for bed time.  After her nap we got dressed and ran a quick errand.  I needed to return something at the mall and while I was there decided to let her play at their indoor playground.  And oh by the way, how cool would it be to be so fascinated with something as simple as an escalator?  It’s like we were at an amusement park…We came home, watched a little more tv, ate dinner, took a bath then off to bed.

So you see, nothing spectacular happened, but there’s been very little crying and drama today and I’m functioning on enough sleep so I know my attitude is better which I think is KEY.  This week has the potential of being really rough as Hubs left this morning and won’t be back until Friday evening.  I don’t think he’s ever been gone that long.  I’m really glad our week started out so pleasantly and I’m thrilled to finally have a day where I feel I succeeded as a parent instead of failing.  My hormones are completely wonky these days, which is to be expected, but it’s still stressful.  And frankly, a 3-year-old is hard.  I needed a little reassurance that I’m not totally failing as her mother as things around here have been a little tense as of late.

I’ll know more after my appointment next week, but as of my last appointment it seems that Baby C may have flipped into the correct position all on her own.  My doc will begin internal exams next week (she thinks I’m a riot since I told her thanks for the warning and I’d be sure to “tidy up” for her, only I’m much more crass than that and so is she) and will be able to confirm her position at that time.  I haven’t totally ruled out the possibility of a c-section, but I did manage to scour up the motivation to finish up my Hypnobirthing book just in case.  The only complaints I have are feeling tired and a little achy and my ridiculous acid reflux.  I’m thankful to be at home and have the opportunity to rest whenever I feel the need.  My acid reflux is another story.  I doesn’t seem to matter what I eat, drink, don’t eat or don’t drink.  It’s horrible all day long and wakes me up at least once a night.  I take meds morning and night and chew Tums all day long.  Oh well, I just need to hold on for a few more weeks.  I’ve been told apple cider vinegar works wonders…I’m seriously thinking of trying it.

Since I’m feeling happy and thrilled about my girl today, I thought I’d be brave and post a recent picture of her.  It will most likely end up being taken down soon once I think about all the crazies surfing the Internet, but for now, here’s my little girl.  🙂  And for the record, she’s ridiculously tall with dirty blonde hair and big, icy blue eyes.  Her daddy has his work cut out for him.