12 Week Belly Shot

It’s Friiiiiiday!  And, it’s a long weekend.  The Hubs and I are dropping little A off with my folks tomorrow afternoon and having ourselves a date night!  We’re having Japanese food.  I. can’t. wait.  It’s sounded sooooo good for a few weeks now, hope I still feel that way by tomorrow evening because I fully intend to stuff my face.  On Sunday, we’re headed to the Promised Land of College Station to watch the Aggies beat the hell out of the SMU Mustangs.  We’re looking forward to a good time; and some much needed alone time.  And tailgating.  And lots of beer water.  And football.  And more beer water.  Damn.

I seem to be showing these days.  Although, if need be I can still hide the bulging belly of mine.  Which is good, because the need arises on a regular basis.  Since it’s Friday and I seem to be in a decent mood, I’ve decided to actually post a picture of myself here.  Now, because I seem to be as superstitious as a dirty-jock-strap-wearing-football-player these days I just had to break out the Doppler and listen for the heartbeat before taking this picture.  There it was, chugging away just before little dude/ette gave me strong kick that made an awful squawking noise on the Doppler.  Then dude/ette left and I didn’t feel like playing chase today.  But, I know s/he’s there so I feel confident that I’m not jinxing myself today by posting this picture!

12 week belly shot

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11W 3D

I had a wonderful doctor’s appointment on Monday.  I went in expecting another run of the mill, wait forever, be frustrated kind of appointment and was pleasantly surprised.  Since I purchased my Doppler, my anxiety was slightly less since I had been hearing the heartbeat at home, but I was still nervous.  Nervous that the u/s would show the baby wasn’t growing or had developed 4 heads or something.  I entered a fairly empty office…a rare sight for any OB office.  Not necessarily a sign that your wait won’t be extraordinary though.  Trust me.  I’ve seen it happen.  I scheduled the appointment for 9am and at the last minute, decided to leave A at home.  She’s battling a slight cold and I just knew there would be 12 6-week-olds in the waiting room if I took her with me; and as she was hacking up a lung I’d get the evil eye from all the new moms as I tried desperately to convince them it was just allergies.  Fortunately, my mother in law was able to come stay with her while Hubs and I went to the appointment.  I showed up at 8:50 and got called back at 9am.  Things were looking up!  I did the norm, weight (down…normal for me at this point), pee in a cup (uh, barely…I hope they got what they needed!), blood pressure (really good!), undress from the waist down…doc will be in shortly.  Sidebar:  Why can’t they make those paper sheets long enough to wrap all the way around?  I hate leaving my butt crack exposed.  But I digress…

When my doc finally made her way in (she was chatting about something on TMZ with the nurses in the hallway) she handed me a thank you card from sweet Monica.  I sent her chocolate covered strawberries after my minor  major freak out a few weeks ago.  We proceeded with the sono and the first thing out of Dr. A’s mouth was, “Oh, your baby’s so cute!”  I think her pregnancy is making her a big softie.  She turned the screen towards us and we proceeded to watch a very healthy, VERY active little baby dance around for a good 15 minutes or so.  We have tons of pictures, but nothing great since the little thing was moving around so much!  Dr. A pointed out ears, arms, legs, profile shots, skull shots and the umbilical cord.  She even spotted the gender, but I declined.  For 2 reasons:  1) Hubs and I are still not in agreement on finding out.  He wants to know, I kind of want to wait until delivery.  2) I know she’s good, but I’m not even 12 weeks…can she really tell this early?  She seemed confident, and I’ve questioned my decision since Monday, but alas, we’ll be waiting until at least the anatomy scan at 20 weeks.  I was shocked, but happy, that she spent so much time looking around.  She’s NEVER spent that much time on an u/s with me.  She was getting a kick out of how busy the little dude/ette was.  Once she was finished she answered a few questions I had and I talked to her a little about her pregnancy.  She swears she won’t be missing much time from work, 2 weeks at the most…and that’s only if she has to have a C-section.  She’s a trooper.  Or maybe crazy.  I dunno.  But probably crazy.

The best thing I took away from the appointment, aside from a good u/s with good results, was her suggestion of a protein smoothie first thing in the morning.  She said it really helped with her nausea so after our appointment (we were back in the car at 9:35!) we ran by Sprouts and picked up protein powder, berries, frozen fruit and greek yogurt.  I’m on day 2 of morning smoothies and I’m feeling pretty good!  We’ll see if it’s a fluke or if the protein-loading first thing in the morning is helping.  And now, for some pictures!
US 3 Scan 4

US 3 Scan 2

US 3 Scan 1

US 3 Scan 3

The Latest and Greatest…

I figured it was time for one of those random updates.  Truthfully, we haven’t had a ton going on.  I feel like we’re in a holding pattern of sorts for another week or so.  A starts preschool again in a few weeks.  Perfect timing too because she’s climbing the walls around the house.  Morning sickness is still lurking around here and it’s all I can do to lay on the couch, let the dogs out a few times a day and keep the kiddo and myself fed and hydrated.  I’m still holding my breath anytime I have to open the fridge.  Same thing with the freezer.  Did you know freezers can stink?  It’s specifically a flavored coffee we purchased right before the m/s started.  I can feel myself turning green just thinking about it.  I can barely stand to look at the dishes…clean or dirty.  Opening the dishwasher makes me gag.  Our den smells horrific to me and makes me want to hurl.  My house is a general disaster (by my standards anyways) and needs a complete dusting of EVERY surface.  Then everything needs to be dusted again.  We have 3 dogs ya know.  Add to that the insane heat we’re having and well, it’s ugly.  Thankfully my kiddo is as big of a couch potato as I am and is usually pretty content watching episode after episode of Curious George and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.  She’s also a BIG fan of Bubble Guppies…but that’s reserved for bedtime only.  At least for now.

The Hubs is home this week.  It’s been really nice to have him around.  After a stern talking-to a few weeks ago he’s really stepped up and I am so very grateful for his help with everything around the house and with little A.  He’s been a real trooper totally picking up my slack (er, especially since I’m on pelvic rest and all).  I think he feels sorry for me.  He heard me heaving this morning while brushing my teeth.  Oh well.  It seems this pregnancy is progressing nicely.  I guess.  I’ve been able to locate the heartbeat with my Doppler each time I’ve tried (which may or may not be daily, I’ll never tell).  Seems strong and steady to me, but hey, what do I know.  I realize things could still go terribly wrong (and I still seem to have moments of panic and terror each day) but I’m starting to have just a tad bit more confidence about this baby.  I’ve developed quite the belly, although if its baby or bloat still remains undecided.  Either way, the most comfortable clothing right now is pajamas.  And thankfully, the dogs and the kid don’t seem to mind.  According to one of the calendars I look at, the baby is the size of a prune this week, from head to rump.  Next week, it’s supposed to be the size of a plum; which I find somewhat ironic since a prune is a dried plum…but I digress…

I have literally nothing going on in my life these days.  That’s not entirely true, my weekends are pretty full, but if Hubs keeps asking me what I have planned for the day I’m going to be forced to start lying to him.  I just don’t really have the capacity to be gallivanting all over the city right now.  Any movement releases the nausea demons in my stomach.  Add that to the heat outside and well, it’s just a flat-out UGLY combination.  I sweat a lot these days and just look downright pathetic.  A few more weeks is what I keep telling myself.  I’m still not sure what happens in a few weeks…My biggest plan for today was to call my friend.  And perhaps put on a bra.  I’ve made the phone call.  Doubt I’ll get around to donning a bra…what’s the point, really?  And to be fair, the day started out rough when I woke up with a migraine.

We’re headed out-of-town this weekend.  Just a quick day trip to Bryan, TX to attend Hubs’ grandpa’s bday party.  It’s a fun time every year since his whole family shows up.  It’s really the only time we see most of them and now we get to watch A play with all the other kiddos.  I have painstakingly chosen (ok, fine, by chosen I mean bought) a dress that completely covers my belly so no one will suspect a thing.  My sister-in-law keeps telling me no one would notice.  I can’t decide if she’s just being nice or if maybe I’ve been a little chunkier  than I realized.  All I know is that when I’m checking out my profile I can no longer suck in my gut.  That’s new.  That’s baby.  I mean, it IS my 3rd pregnancy.  And to be honest, I realize it’s slightly insane to be so intent on NO ONE KNOWING, but I just don’t want to talk about it.  So, I’ll hide it while I can.  I think I’m afraid of the judgement from people who might think we tried too soon.  I don’t think we did, but I’m also aware that not everyone makes the same decisions…welcome to life.

I’m feeling a slight burst of energy so I think I’ll go vacuum.  It will most likely only last about 5 minutes…better do something productive while I can.  Besides, I’m planning to fry pork chops for dinner so I’m definitely going to need my rest. I make it a point not to fry food in my house.  That’s what restaurants are for.  Welcome to pregnancy.

Common Sense

My common sense has up and left me.  It took with it my ability to reason.  I’ll give you an example:

My doppler arrived yesterday.  Coolest little contraption, except it probably needs to come with its own 12-step program because addiction and obsessiveness is inevitable.  I decided to try to find the little tadpoles heartbeat around nap time today.  Only took me a few seconds to hear the womp-a-womp-a-womp-a.  Ahh, such a sweet sound.  Then, in an instant, it was gone.  OMG, my baby just died.  That was my first thought.  Then, common sense decided to make a brief appearance and remind me that the tadpole probably did not like being smushed within an inch of its life while I laid there listening to its heartbeat.  After a few minutes, sure enough, just to the right I was able to find the heartbeat again (they can move around you know…).  I then told the tadpole I would leave it alone….for the time being.

Anyone with a SHRED of common sense left would never have thought that her baby instantly died at the exact moment she was listening to its heartbeat during nap time on a random Thursday afternoon.  Geez, I don’t know where my common sense went, or if it plans to return, but I’m not sure I can live with this sketchy woman currently taking up residence in my body.

P.S.  I’m over summer.  I’m over the heat, I’m over the no-schedule lifestyle, I’m over feeling like a prisoner in my own home.

P.P.S.  I had a craving for those Little Debbie Oatmeal Cookies.  Just returned from the grocery store.  Just finished one.  It was glorious.  And a perfectly acceptable meal during the 1st trimester.  That is all.

P.P.P.S  I probably won’t want another one.  In fact, the thought of another one now makes me queasy.  I hope Hubs enjoys them.

How to scare the crap out of a woman who is pregnant (after a loss)…

***DISCLAIMER***

This post may have some graphic content.  You’ve been warned.  Carry on.

If you have ever lost a child or pregnancy, you know where I’m coming from.  If you’ve ever known someone who has lost a child or pregnancy, you kind of know where I’m coming from.  If you’ve never experienced either of these, I’m about to enlighten you.  Bleeding during pregnancy is NEVER a good thing.  It should always be handled with caution.  You are not supposed to bleed when you’re pregnant and if you ever notice blood, you should contact your doctor immediately.  Now, I’m not talking about a scratch on your knee or slicing your finger in the kitchen (which I also did recently, but I digress…).  I’m referring to blood coming from your va.gi.na.  I know all the books say bleeding is common, but that doesn’t make it normal or ok.  Bleeding can is usually indicative of a problem with the pregnancy.  It can also be indicative of the worst…miscarriage.  There are lots of reasons a woman may experience some bleeding during pregnancy but sadly, the only conclusion someone who is pregnant after a loss can come to is that she is miscarrying.

Hubs left town for work Monday afternoon.  He had to be gone for this to happen.  Nothing bad ever happens when he’s home.  We put A to bed at 8 at night.  I’d been feeling particularly bad all day and by 8 o’clock, I was beat.  I had just finished giving her a bath when I realized I needed to pee.  So I sat down and began inspecting my underwear as all pregnant women do.  I immediately noticed the dark spot and broke out into a sweat.  I wiped and inspected the toilet paper (again, as I always do) and saw the brownish color.  But it wasn’t much.  I was wearing dark underwear and thought maybe it wasn’t actually blood so there I sat blotting my undies with the toilet paper trying to determine if it was actually blood I was seeing.  After a few minutes I wiped again and this time, there was no mistaking the brown on the toilet paper.  I was bleeding.  And I freaked.  I frantically put A to bed, said quick prayers with her and called the Hubs.  I couldn’t stop the tears at this point.  I was panicked.  I felt sick, ill and completely hopeless.  You see, I’ve NEVER bled during any of my pregnancies.  I had no idea what was going on, I just knew it was bad.  I was also crampy and especially so in my back.  Now, I’ve been fairly crampy in the evenings during this whole ordeal, but it felt more intense on Monday evening.  Hubs wanted me to go to the ER.  I told him no, that there was nothing they could do, but I would call my doc and speak with the on-call nurse.  I left a message and got a return phone call almost immediately.  From Monica.  Sweet, calm, patient Monica.  (Note:  Send Monica a gift basket today)  In one of my earlier posts I discussed why I didn’t want to switch docs.  The care that I received Monday night and Tuesday is a perfect example of why.  She called me back, called me by my name and knew EXACTLY who I was.  My doc has a HUGE practice and to be known out of hundreds of women makes me feel well cared for.  She asked me to describe the bleeding, asked if I was having cramps, how intense they were, and asked if I’d recently had intercourse.  The answer was yes, but it had been 2 days.  Seemed like a long time to wait to see any bleeding from sex 2 days beforehand; and she agreed.  She told me she wanted to bring me in for a sonogram the next day.  It would make me feel better, it would make my doc feel better and they needed to know where the blood was coming from.  She asked me to call her if I didn’t hear from her by 8:30.  I spent the rest of the evening on the couch.  I googled bleeding in early pregnancy.  You should never google.  It’s never good news that you read.  I had been instructed by the Hubs to let him know whenever I peed.  He wanted to know if I was seeing anymore blood.  Thankfully, I never did, but I did have some pretty bad cramps so not seeing blood wasn’t much comfort.  I slept AWFUL Monday night.  I mean, I’m not sleeping well anyways, but it was AWFUL.  I was terrified.  I was panicked.  I just knew it was over, there was no way this was ending well.

I woke up Tuesday morning with a pounding headache and nausea that was absolutely raging.  I brushed my teeth, gagged on my toothbrush and spent 10 minutes over the toilet dry-heaving.  The phone rang at 8:15 and Monica let me know I had an appt at 10.  I called my mother in law who was going to come and sit with A, and then I called my mom.  I hadn’t called her beforehand.  It just wasn’t worth the conversation since I didn’t really know what was going on.  She was actually off work attending an appointment of her own.  I hung up with her crying on the other end.  Not because she was sad about the possible loss of a 3rd baby, but because she’s tired and frustrated of the pain and agony her own child is going through.  She called back 5 minutes later and told me she cancelled her own appointment and was headed my way.  She was going with me.  At first I refused, I had every intention of doing this alone.  But she insisted.  I told her fine, but she had to stop crying.  She was only allowed to go with me as support; I couldn’t deal with being HER emotional support should we get bad news.

I drove to my appointment alone.  I don’t remember it.  It felt like I was alone, totally alone in the world.  Like there were no other cars on the road at all.  It never crossed my mind that everything could be ok.  Even though I specifically asked Monica that morning if these things ever turned out ok.  She said, absolutely, and the fact that I hadn’t seen any more blood was reassuring.  The truth is, life isn’t fair.  It’s not like, well, I lost the twins so that was my payment.  It doesn’t work that way.  And I was totally prepared to hear that God had taken another child from us.  I sat in the waiting room for what felt like hours.  My mom was stuck in traffic trying to get to me.  When they finally called me back, I thought I was going to throw up and pass out.  Thank God I was seen by a different tech than the one that had to tell me the twins had died.  It seems like a small thing, but even being in a different room gave me comfort.  The tech had me take off my pants and then we sat.  And waited.  It was a huge practice in patience.  The machine was RIGHT THERE.  I could have my answer in SECONDS, but the tech had to catch up on some paperwork and she was honestly giving my mom a few more minutes to arrive.  She asked if this was my first.  I said no, this is actually baby #4.  2 and 3 were twins that we lost around 19 weeks.  Then the sympathy started.  She knew.  I was honest with her that I was completely freaked.  We went ahead and started at this point.  Sonograms at this point are transvaginal.  She inserted the probe and I immediately saw the baby.  My eyes were frantically searching the screen for the flicker of a heartbeat or movement of any kind from the baby, but before I could find it she said, oh yeah, I see a heart beat!  Cue the tears, for the 2nd time.  I’m laying there, feet in stirrups, ultrasound probe still in me and I’m texting the Hubs.  He was stuck in training in Minnesota.  All I could get out was a text that said “Baby’s ok.”  The tech took some measurements, and then looked around for the source of the bleed.  Baby was measuring right on time (9 weeks, 4 days) and had a healthy (and steady) heart beat of 183!  She even pointed out tiny arms!  She said my cervix was nice and long and CLOSED.  Which is what they want to see.  I told her I was feeling more intense pain on my right side so she looked at my ovaries, but they were perfectly fine.  She couldn’t find any blood in my uterus, good news!  She noted, however, the placenta was completely covering the cervix.  This is something that normally corrects itself as the baby/uterus grows.  My mom showed up as soon as she was done.  It didn’t matter though since the baby was totally fine.  I gave Mary, the tech, a big hug before we left.  You see, she’s my new favorite person.

I headed downstairs to my docs office and since my doc does surgery and rounds on Tuesday’s, she wasn’t there.  So I saw Monica.  And gave her a big hug.  She took one look at the sono pics and diagnosed me with Placenta Previa.  Normally not a big deal, but since I’ve had bleeding (from the sex…because of the placenta previa) they want to avoid any further bleeding.  I’ve been placed on pelvic rest (no se.x) for the next 2 weeks at least when I have another appointment scheduled.  Monica said I’ll probably be on pelvic rest until 16 or 18 weeks, or until the placenta moves out of the way.  It kind of sucks, but it’s a small price to pay to get this baby here safely and healthy.  They went ahead and gave me a Rhogam shot since I’m Rh negative.  Just in case there’s any bleeding inside the uterus that may transfer to the baby; they don’t want to risk my body trying to abort the pregnancy since the 2 blood types aren’t compatible.  BIG SIGH OF RELIEF.  I spent the rest of the afternoon lying around.  I’ll probably spend the next 2 weeks lying around.  I’ll ask my doc for more specifics on restrictions when I see her in 2 weeks, but I’m not taking any chances.  The truth is, just because everything was fine yesterday, it doesn’t mean everything will be fine tomorrow.  I’m already considered high-risk and now I’ve had bleeding.  I’ll be monitored very closely.  Today I’m really thankful I’ve got great medical care and thankful for my uber-supportive family.  I was really thankful to have my mom here yesterday.  And she kept her promise, she wasn’t emotional at all.  I’ve ordered a fetal doppler which should arrive today.  It may seem slightly obsessive, but I’m looking forward to being able to listen to the heartbeat whenever I want.  Fingers crossed and lots of prayers that everything continues to progress normally!

WM US #2

Lazy Weekends

I apologize for my recent absence. To be honest, the morning sickness is currently kicking my butt. I just left the house for the first time in several days (well, voluntarily anyways) to run a quick errand and I swear it almost killed me. Anyways, I’m not complaining, just offering an excuse of sorts. Forgive me? Good. Let’s move on.

Last weekend was glorious. For the first time in something like 30 or 40 days, the temperature stayed under 100 degrees. My A/C was crying from thankfulness. In addition to cooler temps, we got RAIN on Saturday! I almost didn’t recognize the wet substance falling from the sky. It was the good rain too. The kind that started at some point early in the morning and continued a slow fall well into the afternoon. Our grass, trees and flowers were in heaven.  You can water all you want, but there’s nothing like the cleansing and deep watering the earth gets from actual rain. Of course, the temps only lasted a few days and now we’re back to 100+ temps. Oh well. We took the weekend super easy. Seriously. I can’t remember the last time we had a weekend like that. We had no plans and totally lounged around. A got up late (thanks to the cloudy skies) and wanted to play outside. How could we refuse her? So we spent Saturday morning playing outside in the rain. It was awesome. She was loving playing in the wet sand and the mud. She’s certainly not the girly-girl I am. Hubs and I got a date night Saturday night which was glorious. We were able to conjure up one of those really deep and thought-provoking conversations. We talked a lot about our future, talked about our dreams and goals and I think we were able to fan our little flame of dreams and desires a bit. I’ll be discussing those things here, soon, but for the first time in a loooooong time I feel like I’m able to start looking ahead. To keep dreaming big and to work hard towards our goals.

In other news, Hubs has decided to run a half-marathon in October. He’s been training religiously and I’m really proud of the progress he’s made. It’s important to have goals in life. To have something you’re working towards. It doesn’t have to be anything ginormous, something as simple as training for and running a race gives you a goal. And meeting goals is a good thing. You should always, always, always have goals. Big, medium and small goals.

I spent Sunday on the couch. Again, the morning sickness is kicking my butt. But the good news is that I was able to finish A Games of Thrones. I picked up the 2nd book on Saturday night and can’t wait to get into it. I never thought of myself as one that would enjoy that type of book, but I couldn’t put the first one down. So, all in all, a super lazy, much-needed weekend. Which is perfect timing because that was it for a while. We literally have something going on every weekend from now until Thanksgiving. And the weekends between Thanksgiving and Christmas will fill up very soon. I’m getting ready to do another post right away about a really scary 24 hours we just had, but for now, here are a few pics from our Saturday morning.

WM A in Rain

WM A feet in rain

Who doesn't love little feet?

Social Un-Networking

I curse the day I joined facebook. Really. I do. For the longest time, I had absolutely no desire to have a fb account. In fact, I remember telling people that I flat-out didn’t have the time to be on fb. And I truly didn’t. I had a full-time job that occupied my mind and conversations even when I wasn’t there. I had a social calendar, volunteer work, a husband and honestly, I didn’t care to reconnect with a bunch of people I knew in high school. I didn’t like them then, why would I like them now? Turns out, people change and one shouldn’t base life-long opinions on the actions of a bunch of 16 year olds. But I digress…

Once I had A and started my life as a stay at home mom the idea of fb became rather appealing. And so I joined right up and haven’t looked back. It was a great way to keep up with my former colleagues without having to actually maintain a relationship with them, a great way to stalk the kids I hated in high school and a great way for distant relatives to keep up with the life and times of A. I was a responsible fb user. I didn’t over-do the posting. I tried very hard not to post things that would stir controversy, committed to never, ever, EVER, discussing potty training on fb and would occasionally treat my fb friends to some of my witty comments. I find myself hilarious, by the way. I also tried to keep the bragging to a minimum. Nothing drives me batty like the narcissistic facebook-er. I was a responsible fb user. It never occurred to me NOT to announce my pregnancy with the twins on fb. I mean, I was just one of a TON of my fb friends announcing their pregnancies. There was clearly something in the water. I’m not one to start talking about it at 6 weeks or anything, I mean, geez, I’m smarter than that. You should at least wait until you’re out of the 1st trimester…when things are much, much safer. So after our 3rd sono at 14.5 weeks, I posted the fb status that we were expecting twins. Very exciting stuff. Lots of comments, only a few that required the side-eye. Posting about losing them was MUCH harder than the original announcement. You can imagine this time around my feelings about announcing my pregnancy on fb. There’s about a 99% chance it won’t happen. At all.

After losing the twins I tried to maintain my fb life, but it just didn’t hold the same appeal. I recently (well, actually, not so recently) took the app off my phone and haven’t really missed it. I still access fb several times a day but I rarely post. I’m sure my fb friends are wondering what’s happened to me. Actually, I know for a fact they haven’t noticed. The whole point of fb is to talk about yourself, not care what’s going on in anyone else’s life. I have a Twitter account that I spend more time on these days. I have MUCH less traffic and it just feels safer. I feel like I can say whatever I want. My parents don’t follow me. Relatives don’t follow me. People that know my in-laws don’t follow me on Twitter. It’s just safer.

Part of the reason that fb lost its appeal after losing the twins was this: Things that had never bothered me before all of a sudden PISSED ME OFF. Part of it was hormones. Part of it was grief. Most of it was due to the fact that I had just been sucker-punched into realizing life is too damn short and way too valuable to be dealing with most of the crap on fb. And that most people are incredibly shallow. I mentioned that I was just one of a multitude of girls that were pg and most of them, like I was, are due this month. The same month the twins were due. It’s tough to see them progressing nicely through their pregnancies, getting to glide through without the fear that I now have to feel. There is one in particular that is so care-free I wonder if she even realizes there is any danger at all?! My current favorite (and by favorite I mean the one that makes me want to spit nails) is the one that is on baby #1, has NO IDEA what to expect, and feels the need to regularly update people on how excited she is to give birth naturally, at home. (And she of course feels this is the only and the right way to give birth.) She can’t wait to watch her body respond to the changes (she’s talking about labor) and to watch the relationship between herself and her husband deepen (again, during labor). 😮 I’m of the mindset that until you’ve experienced it PERSONALLY, you can’t talk about it. I don’t care how many videos you’ve watched, how many classes you’ve taken or how well you can breathe deeply. She has NO CLUE what to expect. As one that’s been there twice now, I hate to inform her there is no way you can focus on your body responding to the changes or think deeply about the relationship with your husband. You’re thinking about pain. And getting the pain to stop. And last time I checked labor wasn’t the time to be all lovey-dovey with your mate. That’s what got you into this situation.

Coming in a close second is the one that every week posts her progress from one of the pregnancy calendar websites. I can’t help but feel stabby every time I see it. For some reason I feel like a massive failure each time she posts it. I feel like she specifically thought of me and said, “Hey, let me post this so B can see just how great things are going for me and just how much she screwed up.” Now, realistically I know I don’t enter her thought process at all, but that’s all part of coping with a loss. There’s still a ton of guilt for losing the babies. No matter how many times people tell you it wasn’t your fault, I still feel embarrassed. I feel like I should hang my head. I feel kind of like Hester in The Scarlett Letter; like I’m now labeled somehow as a mother that couldn’t keep her babies alive. It just sucks to be reminded, daily, that there are women out there that will never understand the fear that comes with subsequent pregnancies. It sucks to feel that I am some how “lesser” than a woman who has never lost a child. It just plain sucks to feel kind of like an outcast. Like that’s the only thing that people can see when they look at you. It’s a big part of why I’m refusing to tell a lot of people about this new baby. My close friend knows, Hubs’ boss knows, some of our good friends in another city know (and only because they experienced a loss right after ours and are also currently expecting again) and our parents and sisters know. That’s it. And I plan to keep it that way for a very long time. I just can’t stomach the thought of publicly going through another loss. I can’t imagine the embarrassment I would feel if God-forbid something happens to this baby. I realize it seems a foolish thing to be worried about, but I’m just being honest. I still view losing the twins as partly my fault. My body failed me and it failed my babies. I can’t go through that again in front of a few hundred of my closest (ha!) friends.

I did a lot of reading when I was pregnant with the twins. A lot of reading about how people handled being parents of multiples and several times I came across a statement like, “God chooses only the most special people to parent multiples.” When I was pregnant, I was like, “Yeah, I can get behind that statement. That makes me feel better. If God thinks I can handle it, well, then, by golly I guess I can.” But if that’s true, what does that make those of us that have lost babies? Whether it be 1, 2, 3 or multiple babies? Where do we fall in the spectrum of specialness? Or have we been completely kicked out of the specialness spectrum into some abandoned “screw-you” wasteland?

Monday Again?

Well, hello there Monday. Where the hell did you come from? Last time I checked, it was Friday. I can’t wait for football season to start in a few short weeks. It gives us an excuse to sit on our butts all weekend and not leave the house. Plus, football season generally means cooler temps. Ahhhhh, imagine the possibilities.

So, my morning sickness has set in. Full force. I can’t believe that just 2 short weeks ago I was feeling pretty good and thinking I just might have a chance at getting through this pregnancy without the ickies. No such luck. In fact, I think I’m going to pick up some sea bands today. I’ve heard of several ladies that have had luck with them when nothing else works. Strangely enough, the bag of gummy worms I had for dinner last night actually made me feel pretty good. Note to self: buy more gummy worms.

I’m a member of an online community and there are a few things being said that make me want to punch the computer. For example: “A little bit of bleeding is totally normal! Don’t worry about it!” No, it’s not. Call your doctor. Or this gem; “As long as you’re not cramping or bleeding, everything is fine!” Mmmm, try again. Also not true and bad advice. And my personal favorite; “The morning (all day) sickness means the pregnancy is going well!” Again, not true. Not true at all.

With the twins I was still experiencing morning (all day) sickness and never had cramping or bleeding. And things were not fine. Things were not fine at all. This is why I don’t take much solace in the fact that I’m experiencing a whole multitude of pg symptoms at the moment.

We were able to share the news with my family yesterday. They were happy for us, I think everyone is cautious. Hopefully the excitement will set in as time moves on. The Hubs and I are still discussing if we’re going to find out the gender of this baby or not. I’ve always been the type to want to know, in fact, I’m pretty sure I’ve made the comment before that I find it downright stupid NOT to find out. For some reason though, there’s part of me that wants to wait until delivery with this baby. I think it’s because it just really doesn’t matter. We want a healthy baby that we get to bring home this time. Boy or girl…doesn’t matter, I’ll be thrilled either way. I also think there’s part of me that wonders if this isn’t our last baby, so I don’t want to have any regrets. We’re still discussing it, so no decisions yet. The one decision we have made is to keep our name choices to ourselves until the baby is born. It just seems fun.

Hubs has been home this week, and leaves town for a few days tomorrow. I guess, in a way, things will go back to normal. I will now attempt to peel myself out of bed and do something productive. And try to keep the pukies away.

Well, would you look at that!

I’ve been slightly MIA for a few days, mostly due to a little thing known as life. I’m sure you, too, can understand how it sometimes gets in the way. Nothing particularly earth shattering has happened, we’ve just been busy. Too busy. It’s all self-imposed. We can’t help ourselves. We traveled to the Promised Land on Saturday to visit Hubs’ grandparents. They truly don’t care about seeing us (that’s not entirely true) they just count on us to transport the wee one. While I think it’s truly important for A to know as much of her family as possible, the fact that they live 3 hours away makes it challenging. Oh well. It was a nice, successful trip and it’s always nice to feel welcome and loved. We spent last night at the circus. That was fun. No, really, it was! There’s nothing better than seeing your kid’s face light up when they experience something you’ve forgotten was extraordinary. I find myself often wishing I could view the world through the eyes of my child. What an amazing place this must be without the fear and worry that adults have to account for.  Things like gas prices, debt ceilings and 401K’s and 529’s.  But I digress…

The rest of our spare time has been taken up completing long overdue projects around our house. Something about the impending arrival of another baby has me chomping at the bit to get stuff done. I made some major changes to our utility room a few weeks ago and the finishing touches are finally being placed on our dining room that we built, ahem, a year ago. Insert embarrassment here. I think it must be some form of nesting that I’m experiencing but either way, love the new utility room and I just may have somewhere to host a houseful of people for Christmas this year!

Now, on to the title of my post. I had my first ultrasound this morning. It was scheduled for 9am. We got home around 11am. We live 15 minutes away. It appears the appointment that was made for me was never saved in the system so I was basically worked in this morning. I’m glad they didn’t try to reschedule me. There was NO WAY I was leaving that office today without an ultrasound; and I was prepared to tell them so. I already had the speech worked out in my head. My doctor knew I was nervous…probably because I couldn’t stop shaking. I like her. A lot. I’ve had several people tell me they think I should switch doctors and honestly, the thought has also occurred to me. Not because I necessarily feel like she did anything wrong, just to avoid the bad juju I now associate with the office. The truth is though, it’s nice that the nurses are more sensitive towards me and my doc confirmed today that she didn’t forget what happened, she knew exactly what she was walking into when she opened the door to the exam room. I appreciate that. I did catch her off guard when I started crying though…I’m apparently one of her “unemotional” patients so when I get emotional “things get weird”. I don’t need sunshine and puppy dogs from my doctor. I don’t expect her to hug me and cry with me…that’s what friends and family are for. She’s in no way cold, and she doesn’t have a poor bedside manner. And she’s smart. Confident. And I trust her. And she’s sensitive enough to my fears and needs to accommodate them. For example, even though not necessary, she’s bringing me back in 4 weeks for an additional sono just to make sure everything is still on track. She flat-out told me she’d do whatever I wanted meaning if I wanted a sono every week from now until 12 weeks or so, fine. After that the baby gets too big and she has to send me upstairs to the sono suite…cue out of pocket payments if there’s no medical need for the sono. So all in all, I’m satisfied with her care. I did tell the Hubs that I reserved the right to change my mind if I started feeling awkward about being in her office. He promptly asked how that was any different from anything else in life. Smart ass.

So the truth is,I’m not as relieved as I thought I would be. I mean, if I’m being TOTALLY honest, I didn’t expect there to be a heartbeat at all. Perhaps I’m still in shock. I’m thrilled that there’s a (just 1 this time!) 7 week 3 day babe growing inside of me with a healthy heart rate of 150 bpm. But, I’m still scared. I think I will be until I get past the point I was when I lost the twins. Feeling movement will be nice too. A little reminder that (hopefully) everything is ok. And I think I’ll be purchasing a doppler. That way I can check for the heartbeat at home anytime I want. From what I’ve read, some women are able to pick up a heartbeat as early as 9 weeks! That’s just crazy.

It also appears we’re telling my in-laws and sis-in-law (I love her, by the way. I haven’t talked much about her yet…I need to do that) tonight at dinner. I’m not sure how I feel about that. Part of me wants to wait until March and be like, oh, by the way, we had another baby. But that’s unrealistic…or so I’m told. I’m hoping they’ll be happy. I’m hoping they’ll be thrilled, actually. But I’m fearful that they will be cautious and guarded, just like I am. I want to think of something creative to do to tell them. If I don’t, I’ll feel like this baby is already getting the short end of the stick!

But anyways, here’s proof positive that the pee sticks didn’t lie! And PS: I think this one’s a boy 😉

WM Baby #4 Photo 1

Panic Attack or normal anxiety?

I’m not entirely sure what happened last night, but it was definitely a strong emotional response to the idea of having 2 children. It almost felt like what people describe as panic attacks, or maybe it was normal anxiety about a new baby. Either way, I fear there is more to come.

The Hubs asked me this morning if I ever felt that way when I was pg with the twins. The truth is, I don’t remember. Probably not. I was far more worried about the twins and how to manage 2 infants at once. I never really had the opportunity to move out of that fear into the concerns about what it would do to my relationship with A. I felt incredibly guilty (about being a mother to A) the whole time I was pg with the twins. I was so, so sick. I spent the majority of those 19 weeks in bed with A next to me watching a ridiculous amount of tv. I just couldn’t function.

A was with my parents this weekend while we did some stuff around the house. It’s amazing how much a 2 year old can slow you down. She had a blast and we got soooooooo much done. But the truth is, I missed her terribly. Maybe it’s because I’m hormonal, or maybe it’s because I finally feel like the confident mother I’ve longed to be. Either way I was thrilled to have her home. It’s too quiet without her here. Too quickly I find myself depressed because I seem to be without purpose. But as I lay in bed last night I started to feel like I couldn’t breathe. I started having the most irrational thoughts about adding another baby. I wondered and became fearful that my relationship with A would be damaged. That I would revert back to the unconfident mother that couldn’t manage simple tasks like grocery shopping or vacuuming. That I would no longer be able to truly enjoy A and laugh at her…laugh with her. Worried that all my time and energy will be spent on the new baby and A will be neglected. Worried that I will resent the new baby for taking away the lifestyle I have and for taking away the relationship I have with A. There were so many thoughts in such a short time…and it’s like they just kept feeding off each other and kept getting worse and worse. Even to the point of wondering if I actually wanted more than one child…if maybe we’d made a mistake…

It breaks my heart to even write those words. I want this baby, of course I do, I’d take this one AND my twins if it was my choice.

I think every parent struggles with the change that takes place adding baby #2. The first baby changes you so very much. There’s such an internal struggle to hang onto the person you were before children and the slow transformation into a mother. It happens slowly, over time, until one day you look up and can’t really remember life before children. And when you do remember it, it seems as though you’re watching a movie with someone acting out your former life. You remember how hard that transformation was, so with baby #2 on the way, it only makes sense that one would be fearful of another drastic change. Sometimes I’m still surprised that I actually survived that first year. Now I finally feel settled into my role as a mother…and a stay at home mom at that. Now I feel like that settled feeling is going to be yanked out from underneath me. And I feel like so much of who I am now has been formed based on what’s best for A and if that gets taken away…what happens to her?

The Hubs tells me I’m hormonal these days, so that’s probably where some of the irrational thoughts are coming from, but it still worries me. And if I’m this worried at only 6 weeks in, I have no clue what to expect in the coming months. Still not sure if what I experienced was a panic attack or normal anxiety. Either way, it sucked.