Onederland

My baby is one.

The morning of her birthday, Ellie woke up crying at 1AM. We looked at her on the video monitor (which is the #1 most useful baby gadget we have, hands down) and noticed that her crib sheet seemed awfully wet. We usually give her a few minutes to cry if she wakes up at night to see if she’ll settle herself back down (nine times out of ten she puts herself back to sleep within a minute or two), but we thought maybe she had leaked out of her diaper or something so we went right in. As soon as we opened the door the vomit smell hit us like a ton of bricks. Poor baby had puked everywhere. In addition to her sheet being soaked, puke was smeared all over her PJs, all over her face, in her hair, in her ears.

Tammy and I changed her and wiped her down as best we could and then I rocked her and sang to her and told her I loved her. At first she was tense and straining against me, agitated and exhausted and confused. But soon her little body was relaxing and growing heavier and so I laid her down in her clean crib. I stroked her face and her fuzzy head and as I pulled my hand back to let her sleep, her little fingers reached up and grasped mine, and so I sat there, hand in hand with my girl, as she fell asleep.

hands-istock-infant-holding-mothers-hand-bw

Happy Birthday to my spirited, joyful, funny and beautiful not-so-baby girl. Thank you for making me a mother. Thank you for choosing me. Thank you for holding my hand in the middle of the night. Welcome to onederland.

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Things that are Weird

Weight gain is weird.
I lost five pounds in the first trimester due to a chronic case of gagging upon thinking about dinner, but gained 15 in the second, due to a chronic case of discovering food again. I’ve been more than steadily gaining during the third trimester, enough to the point where a nurse practitioner (who I actually like a lot) had a little chat with me about it. I was basically gaining twice what I should in a week. This little chat was at my OB appointment just before Thanksgiving. I fretted and stewed over this, especially her warnings of a 10 pound baby. Despite all this worrying, I did exactly nothing differently (except eat, if possible, more – it was Thanksgiving after all) in the two week gap between the Weight Discussion appointment and my next appointment, but you see where this is going, right? I lost three pounds. How is that even possible?

(Side note: I’m not used to gaining weight. Please do not hate me, but it’s one of the few ways I’ve lucked out in the genetic lottery. (I’ve “won” plenty of other shitty shitty genetic traits, so seriously, don’t hate me too much.) I know I’m supposed to gain weight during pregnancy, and I certainly AM, but it’s so, so odd for me to catch glimpses of myself in the mirror and think, “who is that chubby pregnant woman?” only to realize that, hey! that’s me. I was looking at some pictures of me from our baby shower over Thanksgiving weekend and was astonished to find photographic evidence of a double chin. And an ass that, how can I put this, just won’t quit. Ultimately, I’m not too crazy far outside of the recommended weight gain range, and my mom (who is super thin) gained like 50 pounds when she was pregnant with me (and lost it all within a month or two). I know everyone gains and loses weight differently, especially in pregnancy, but damn it is a strange and not entirely comfortable phenomenon.)

Baby size is weird
La fetus has been measuring ahead this whole pregnancy, basically since the very first ultrasound when she was nothing more than a squiggle and a cheerio. I like to joke about how advanced she is, but now I’m getting all kinds of worried because she’s measuring two whole weeks ahead. The perinatal doctor (where my OB sends me for ultrasounds) and the ultrasound tech kept asking me if I have diabetes. Excuse me, I can’t hear you over the sound of me crunching on this kit-kat. What was the question again? (No, I don’t have GD.) After the ultrasound, in which the tech told me she looked perfect but was “just big…all over big…BIG baby,” I had a sit down with a high risk doctor. She also warned me about the size of the baby (93 percentile!!!!!!!) and then segued into a discussion of the hospital policy on cesarean birth.

(Side note: the doctor asked me if I was a big baby (nope, 7 something pounds) and then tentatively asked me if I knew how big “the father” was at birth. We told her we didn’t know how big the donor was at birth, but as an adult he is 6’1” and 170lbs. So, not enormous, but not a shrinking violet, either.  Tammy then volunteered the information that she was a big baby, being over 9lbs, mostly just to make conversation and to point out that her mom had vaginal births will all of her kids, all of whom were over 9lbs. The poor doctor was very confused by this information but did her best to integrate it into our discussion by saying that Tammy’s birth weight explained why I was carrying a big baby. Ha! Not so much. Poor confused doctor.)

Now, first of all, I know that ultrasounds are not the best predictor of birth weight. The doctor even admitted that their measurements can be up to a pound off, and when we’re talking about a fetus that weighs 4 pounds (per the internet average) or 5 pounds (what the ultrasound measured my baby at), that’s a margin of error of 20%! My fundal measurements are a lot closer to where I know I should be (sometimes a week ahead, sometimes only a few days ahead).

But, with that out of the way, what if I DO end up with a big baby? I would like to avoid a c-section if possible (what the fuck was the point of taking the damn Lamaze class, I ask you) but at the same time I don’t want to spend all that time (and pain!! Let’s not forget the pain!!) in labor only to end up with an emergency C anyway. It’s like the worst of both worlds.

Basically, the hospital policy is that if the baby looks like it will be around 10 pounds they strongly recommend a scheduled C. The baby is head down, so I could probably have a chance at a vaginal birth, but my hopeful suggestion to the doctor that big = come early was shot down, as was the suggestion that they induce me around 38 or 39 weeks. Apparently the risk with big babies and vaginal births is that the risk of the baby getting “stuck,” either head or shoulders, is higher than with an average or smaller baby. And that could potentially cut off oxygen to the baby and all sorts of other dreadful things.

I’ll probably have another ultrasound in a few weeks to see how the baby’s grown and figure out the plans from there.

While I’m quietly freaking out over this new development, I do have to laugh. In all those panic attacks, all those meltdowns, all those hysterical moments to Tammy, not once did I worry I would have a baby that was too big. I worried about miscarrying, I worried about her health, I worried about preterm labor (I love that I said I wasn’t worried about preterm labor in that post. LIAR!!!), and on and on and on. But a big baby? Never entertained the possibility.

Ha. Ha. Joke’s on me, I guess. But you know what? If this is the “worst” thing that happens, I’ll take it. Every single time.

I Need Some Advice

I feel like crap.

For the past two nights I’ve woken up every hour or so, and wake up a final time in the morning feeling like utter garbage. I wake up to pee, I wake up because Tammy’s snoring, I wake up because I’m uncomfortable, I wake up because I’m too hot, I wake up because I’m too cold, I wake up because my back hurts, my arm hurts, my what-the-fuck-ever hurts. And last night I woke up at 3am because my stomach hurt. I was up for almost two hours with stomach pain – menstrual like cramps, nausea, a few stabbing pains here and there.

So what the fuck people. I’m sorry if I’m coming across as a whining pregnant lady to a bunch of people who would love nothing more to be in my shoes, but I’m desperate here. I know it’s only two nights, but I’m a sleeper. I crave sleep. Deep, luxurious sleep that you melt into. When I don’t sleep, nothing works right. I’m clumsy, thick tongued, sore throated, queasy, short tempered, close to tears.

And today I have the added bonus of my stomach *still* hurting. Plus my fingers are swollen, which makes trying to type and do any kind of work freaking annoying.

What do I do? How do I sleep? How do I fix this? Any and all advice is welcome.

Busy vs. Frantic vs. Meltdown

Don’t get me wrong, being busy can be a good thing. It makes the day go by faster, it keeps you sharp, and it gives you a sense of accomplishment at the end of the day.

What I do NOT like, however, is being frantically, panicky busy. The hands shaking, oh-my-god-I-have-so-much-to-do, how-am-I-ever-going-to-get-this-done, please-god-let-my-phone-stop-ringing, I-have-HOW-many-emails?, you-want-this-done-WHEN? busy. The meltdown busy. The fighting back tears as you type as fast as you can, half listening to whoever is yelling on the other end of the phone line. The no lunch, no peeing, sitting rigidly still waiting for the world to collapse in busy.

Yeah. The past few days have been the not-good kind of busy. I’m not going to get into the specifics, because I’m not trying to get dooced (in the off-chance someone IRL found my blog).

But that’s where I’ve been the past while. I’ve tried to check in to your blogs during the few minutes I sneak in the bathroom. I’m cheering for those of you who’ve received good news, and mourning with others who haven’t.

A quick update about the goings on in my neck of the woods:

  • I’m 12 weeks tomorrow. Had a scan (at the OB!!) at 11 weeks, 1 day and it was awesome. The pirate was doing a mambo. Wish I could feel it. (I’ll probably regret saying that later). Measured a day ahead. Obviously my future child is very advanced.
  • Tammy and I went to my parent’s house this past weekend, where Tammy proceeded to get some kind of horrific insect bite on her neck that is now infected. It has inflamed a string of lymph nodes in her neck. She’s on antibiotics but hasn’t seen much improvement yet.
  • This article is fucking stupid. If I had more time I’d post a take down, but let’s just agree that William Saletan is an idiot.
  • I have my nuchal translucency scan next Tuesday. Hopefully I’ll get another good picture.
  • Speaking of pictures, here’s the pirate at 11 weeks, 1 day: baby, 11w2d
  • I’m feeling larger. Hard to tell what’s bloat and what’s…not bloat, but I sure as heck do not fit into my regular pants. Can I just make a note here about how comfortable maternity pants are? Why do we not all wear elastic waist pants ALL.THE.TIME? Can we get something in Vogue on this?
  • My belly button is stretching. It is the most bizarre thing. It feels very tender and the hole is becoming positively cavernous in my stomach. My innie is also becoming puffy and poofy and I’m afraid I will end up with an outtie sooner than expected.
  • I’m still scared of miscarriage but becoming less so every day. A tiny bit. Teeny eensy weensy bit.
  • Today was the first day in weeks that I did not want to vomit at any point. Victory! (other than the times I wanted to vomit due to stress. I’m talking pregnancy vomit that was avoided)
  • Yeah. That’s about it. Hope all of you are well. Off to a meeting with the boss man to…hand him a piece of paper. Yes. So glad I’m still at work to hand him a piece of paper. Not that I’m bitter about that or anything. My chance to get home at a decent hour, foiled by handing him a piece of paper. Awesome.

9.5

Hi, my name is Sarah. It’s been 12 days since my last ultrasound. [Hi, Sarah.]

I’m 9 weeks, 5 days today. I vacillate multiple times a day between joy that I’m pregnant and fear that the b-b-b-baby is dead.

I’ve been feeling physically better since my post a few weeks back. My doctor recommended I take vitamin B-6, and it seemed to help. I also stopped taking my prenatal vitamin, at least for the time being, as it increased my nausea and caused crippling constipation. In the next few weeks I’m hoping to ease back on to it; I know it’s important.

Care to indulge me in a little game I like to play? It’s called, “Is the Baby Still Alive?” To play, we run through my symptoms at any given moment. Here, let me show you:

-Nausea has decreased dramatically. Could definitely be +1 on the Dead Baby side, but could just be a result of the B-6, lack of prenatal vitamins, and time. Let’s call this one a wash. (but secretly I always count this on the Dead Baby side.)
-Bo.obs have grown 2 cup sizes. +1 on Live Baby side.
-Food Cravings and aversions noted. Could be +1 on Live Baby side, but also could be just in my head.
-Tammy says I have a “glow”, but I call bullshit on that one. In punishment for her (sweet) lying, I’m putting +1 on Dead Baby side. Because the universe is a bitch.
-Peeing a LOT – waking up multiples times a night. Also very thirsty. Could be +1 for Live Baby, but it’s also summer, so it makes sense that I’m drinking more. Ok, I’m feeling generous, so I’ll give this to Live Baby.
-Bought maternity clothes. Definitely a +1 for Dead Baby.
-Toilet paper checks come up clear every time. +1 for Live Baby.
-LOTS of twinges, pains, cramps, twitches, pulls, stretches, etc in the abdomen. +1 for both Live and Dead. Could go either way.

OK! Let’s tally the score! One plus one plus one, times eleventy, carry the fuck, and you get a win for Live Baby. Unless you count the secret point for Dead Baby and then it’s a tie.

Damn, I wish I could have another ultrasound. I feel like sending an email to my fertility clinic, begging for a fix. I’ll take my pants off in the waiting room! I’ll have Tammy do the ultrasound! We’ll clean up after!

My next scan is July 12th, with my (gulp) OB. I’ll be 11 weeks (in theory). My biggest fear is being told it’s been dead for days or weeks. I’m not sure why a missed miscarriage seems so much more terrible than a regular miscarriage, but to me it does. Don’t misunderstand me, either would be absolutely devastating. Maybe It’s a control thing? With a regular miscarriage the cramps and bleeding would give you some kind of warning, no? Not that it would be less terrifying to look down and see blood than it would be to look on an ultrasound screen and see…nothing, but…oh shit. I don’t know.

Hi, my name is Sarah. It’s been 12 days since my last ultrasound. [Hi, Sarah.]

Ick

***Warning: pregnancy whining***

When I was at the doctor earlier this week, I mentioned that I had started throwing up. They gave me a new prenatal vitamin to take, that has extra B-6 and ginger. I started it that night, and the next day I felt pretty good. Don’t get me wrong, I still felt the nausea “verge” as Emily puts it. But I was OK; I even managed to eat some actual food.

That brings us to today. First of all, it should be noted that various doors throughout the office building are locked, so you use this little electronic key to get in. The most direct route between my desk and the bathroom requires a key fob to get through.

You know where this is going, right? I totally left my key fob at home today. Aaaaand cue vomiting. I’ve now run to the bathroom two times, pants undone (because they’re too tight and make me feel even more sick) and once I very nearly didn’t make it. Next time I’m taking my trash can with me as I go. Do you think that would be too obvious?

My first reaction was the curse myself, for forgetting the damn key fob. My next reaction was to curse this damn open office plan (I work in a godforsaken cubicle). If I had an office, I could puke behind closed doors. Although then, I’d have to deal with the barfy trash can, so that’s not really a good solution.

Whatever. Too sick to deal with it. I’m now nibbling Cheerios, one cheerio at a time, because I know having nothing in my stomach makes my nausea worse.

Anyone have suggestions for nausea? We’re going to get preggie pops this weekend, and when I’m at home, homemade cran-grape popsicles help considerably. Cannot eat those at work, obviously. Thoughts? Suggestions? Commiseration? Distraction? Jesselyn, you’re my resident expert – what say you?

Birth Control Barf

I started BCP yesterday. It’s kind of a screwy, manipulative cycle in which I’m taking BCP for two weeks, stopping to get my period and then going BACK on BCPs, but whatever. I’m starting the IVF cycle.

We also decided to do Option B – and thank you for all of your advice and suggestions! Basically, we viewed the extra 5k as an insurance policy, and it was worth having to pay it back. And if I get pregnant on the first or second cycle (and it sticks) I’ll be much more focused on the pregnancy and baby than five thousand dollars.

Does birth control make anyone else barfy? I took it last night before bed and woke up this morning feeling extremely queasy. And almost 8 hours later I still feel sick. How can I go through injections to the stomach with no side effects and one teensy-weensy pill makes me a blubbery/barfy mess?

Hormones are weird.