Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Baby Shower

This weekend was my baby shower. My sister in-law, Kim had it at her house. There was so much good food including homemade red velvet cupcakes from scratch with Tom's grandma's recipe. I got some really great gifts from everyone I'm so thankful for all of you who attended. I don't have lots of friends but I am very close with my siblings and I'm lucky that Tom's family has been kind enough to take me in as one of their own. My sister, Karen who has also just announced she is pregnant surprised me with a stroller/car seat system. Wow! What a fantastic gift. She also brought me some great clothes from one of her work friends (thanks Jamie!!) who had a daughter that never got to wear some of the newborn clothes. I think she was one of those big babies that surpassed newborn sizes right away. Now let's hope that doesn't happen to me. I actually didn't know "newborn" was a different size than "0-3 months" so now I have an entire wardrobe of size newborn and I don't know if Lauren will ever wear them. I'm hoping to have a small baby but it's up to nature at this point. I just can't imagine how I'm going to squeeze a watermelon out of my body.

Today Lauren pressed her foot up against my belly in her normal fashion. Except this time she pressed really hard and I could tell it was a foot. So I pressed back against her foot. She pulled away and then put it back and we repeated this a few more times before she was just so totally over it. But Mama loved it! As much as I adore this little rambunctious little sweetie inside me, she is causing me to lose a ton of sleep. I slept a few hours this weekend but got no sleep at all sunday night. I was in such bad shape in the morning, I had to call off work to stay home and try to sleep. I'm so upset about the amount of paid days off I have left for work. I have used so many for doctors appointments and sick days and winter storm extravaganza 2010. It's only april and I won't be able to take a vacation or use any days for myself. All I do is work work work. And then it gets to be too much and I call off. Then we repeat the cycle again and again. Maybe next year (I say that every year.... and every year I don't take a vacation). And now with a kid, I'll probably never get to take one.

Honestly Pregnant,

Friday, April 23, 2010

Mission: Pregnancy

Here i am 32 weeks pregnant. 7 weeks and 6 days till my due date. I had my last monthly check-up a few days ago. Now I go in for check-ups every 2 weeks. Maybe this will make it feel like it's going by faster. In the time that I have been pregnant, people have been born, turned into little old ladies and died of old age. This is the slowest time has ever possibly moved. And it's interesting because I feel really busy, which usually has the opposite affect. It's even more interesting that I am more eager than ever to speed time up because I'm not ready to have a baby. I keep putting off packing my suitcase. I stopped reading baby books. I still refuse to make a "birth plan", especially since my doctor hasn't mentioned anything about it. I stopped reading other mommy blogs. I just feel so over it. I'm so bored with being pregnant. I want my body back. I want my lungs back. I want my sinuses back. I want to drink a giant glass of vodka and coke, the caffinated kind, with extra vodka and extra caffeine. I want pants with zippers and buttons instead of elastic. But most of all, I want all the rib kicking to stop. I'm just so over the invasion of my body. And it's so depressing that she has to come out of my vagina.

Speaking of vagina, I asked my doctor about pain medicine and she said she has a standing epidural order for all her patients. If I ask for it, I can have it. It doesn't matter how far I'm dilated or if she's even there to order it. She said "if you're admitted for labor, you're committed to this so why be in pain?". Man, I like her. She's a girl with my kinda low tolerance for pain! It helps that she just had a baby herself 6 months ago. She's got it fresh in her mind from the mama viewpoint.

At work today I got in the elevator and in strolls a stroller with the most adorable baby in the world... but enough about the baby... The girl pushing the stroller is with a couple other women, possibly her mom and aunt? She must've been bringing her baby in to show off to her co-workers the creature she created with her lady parts. Her mom took one look at me and said "this will be you pretty soon" and I smiled and said "yup". But the baby's mama turned to me and said "do everything you possibly can do before this happens. Your life changes forever" so of course I say "well there's not many things that I really can do at 8 months pregnant". Cuz I mean, seriously, what things is she talking about? The only things I miss are mentioned above (refresher: breathing without pressure on my lungs and sinuses, a kick free rib zone, vodka and caffeine). So then she says "going to the gym is my absolute luxury, if I get to go at all". But in my mind I'm thinking, is she telling me to literally abort Mission: Pregnancy? Because I'm kind of committed at this point. There's no turning back now. And the last thing in the entire world I want to do right now is go to the gym, well you know other than like, swim with sharks or eat poison. So I ask again, internet society, why do women love to bring you down about your pregnancy? Do they want to warn you? Does she think I am expecting to squeeze out an adorable fluffy pink bunny who can take care of her fluffy pink bunny self? Because I'm quite aware this is not a fairy tale ending. Especially with my story so far:
  • Boy meets girl.  
  • Boy and girl struggle through an agonizingly empty pocketed 7 year relationship moving from job to job, apartment to apartment.
  • Both boy and girl lose jobs and move back in with boys parents
  • Girl files bankruptcy.
  • Boy and girl finally get married and take their very first vacation in 7 years as a honeymoon.
  • Girl gets pregnant and miscarries baby.
  • Girl gets pregnant again and here we are

So I'm not expecting an ounce of good fortune because that's just not the way this fairy tale works. I know this will be hard.  I know I will cry.  I know my life changes forever.

Honestly Pregnant (still),


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

I bow down to all the mommies

I've recently had some great advice given to me by many moms. It's been very comforting to blog about my pregnancy and find others who share the same fears and doubts that I do. It's a world I know nothing about and it's becoming scarier as my due date approaches. I love the comfort and respect and encouragement a lot of you have given me. It's very noble to be a mom and take care of another delicate human life. I bow down to you every day and am in awe at what you do for your adorable mini munchkins. But there's one piece of advice I continue to get that bothers me. It's not bad advice and perhaps it's me who can't grasp this advice correctly. "Don't worry, don't psych yourself up, don't over think every little thing". Well for one, you'd be lying if you didn't think of every possible scenerio involving your new life while you were pregnant. I think it's a bit ignorant to say that you went through your pregnancy carefree and didn't panic at times. The only difference is blogging and facebook have the power to make your secret fears public if you choose to speak about them. I'm sure most of you kept your constipation, vomiting, bed wetting, back aching, drooling, migraine, stretch mark woes to yourself. And that's fine with me although I admit I love to hear details about everyone, everything, all the time. I don't believe in TMI. I have no problem putting my feelings out there for people to see and comment on. I also understand people can be critical of your feelings and that's something you have to take in stride. Most of my personal statements have been put out there in the humor of Chelsea Handler, Rosie O'donnell or Jim Gaffigan. A funny take on an issue, multiplied by ten, when I really know in the end, none of it really matters. I am a very vocal person about everything that comes and goes in my life. It has enabled me with great human perception to see things from every angle. So when I say "eeeeek I will never be able to handle a screaming baby!" and people don't see that as humorous, I can't help you. While I am extremely serious that I WILL go into full panic mode with a new baby, I also know I can't stop it. I have the worst anxiety of anyone I know and since I'm pregnant I cannot be medicated. It's taken me years to understand that it's not my fault so it's pretty heartbreaking when people just tell you to stop panicking without understanding the full extend of what's happening inside my brain. I felt guilty for years for pushing people away and being so lonely and anti-social. It's taken a lot of time to get to the point where I understand my body is different and I cannot handle stress the way most can. A few deep breaths and a night out with the girls is not going to help me to de-stress. I have actually been known to have a mini melt down over a back massage and ended more tense afterwards. That's how deep rooted this is for me. I sometimes forget that normal people don't have the heart pounding, nauseas, head spinning, shallow breathing, insomnia crazed episodes like I do for something as simple as having a doctors appointment. I guess my mind just processes information differently. I think if something bad has a possibility to happen then my brain must focus on it and maybe even list all of the bad it can cause and how it can impact me and how will I deal with that impact? Rather than just saying oh I'll be fine and we'll worry about that IF and WHEN it happens. I kind of look at it as an opportunity to prepare myself for the worst. I can't tell you how many time I've grabbed a "just in case" item and had people say "wow, good thing Jen brought that thing. We'd be nowhere without it" and I always think you have my anxiety to thank. My anxiety says you're welcome. So maybe it's customary for you to tell people not to worry and that's understandable. But sometimes it's like smiling at the grumpy cashier at the grocery store who scowls at everyone. Sometimes all she needs is someone to say "I totally know how you feel. I feel that way too and yes, it's painful and hard. I know what you're going through. It sucks" because sometimes even though it's not your intention, that smile can make her feel like the only one in the world that isn't happy. And that's quite a lonely feeling.

I would also like to thank Laurel at Toys R Us for helping my husband find and order our missing crib hardware.

Honestly, Jen

Monday, April 19, 2010

I'm back!

My computer is finally fixed. It's been quite a while since I've been able to get on here. Not much has really happened. In the midst of going from one hormonal rage to the next I found a pediatrician, completed my hospital pre-registration and completed a baby class at the doctor's office as well as a freaky animated video about birth from the hospital. I suppose those things are made to ease your anxiety but all it did was scare me more. I'm so on edge about giving birth and losing sleep that I am jumpy and anxious pretty much 95% of the time. Tom seems to think that it's fair because he has to die first so that's why I have to give birth. Well, if I don't kill him first, he may live forever. That's the most ridiculous comparison I've ever heard. No one knows when they are going to die except those lucky few who commit suicide. Maybe they were just too freaked out to be parents. Well, I am getting pretty close to sympathizing with them.... but not quite yet.

I'm still pretty small for being almost 9 months pregnant (8 months in stupid real world counting). Everyone keeps telling me their words of comfort "don't worry you'll probably blow up at the end". Boy, humans real know how to pass on the serenity. I have a doctors appointment in 2 days and we'll see how much weight I've gained, if any. This is my last monthly check up and I then move on to the bi-weekly check ups, which on an unpregnancy related note, should mean twice a week since bi-annual means twice a year. But who am I to correct the English language? Somehow this makes sense to america.

So I am having crib issues.  I was given a crib and i believe it is missing some hardware to put it together.  If anyone has a Bergamo or Jardine crib and you still have contact information to order a manual or missing parts please let me know. We spent so much time priming and painting this crib white that it would be a shame to have to go out and buy a crib after all our hard work.  And by "our" hard work, I basically mean "Tom's" hard work.  Thanks Preggo friends.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Breastfeeding all the live long day

I had a breast feeding class today through work. They had a lactation consultant come in and give us the run down. Things like yes, you have to devote your entire day and night to feeding this child. No, you may not sleep. Yes, it's easy. No, it doesn't hurt (uhh yeah right). And I suppose we learned other important things along the way. I left with four pages of hand written notes all about breast milk storage, latch positions and health benefits. But all that stuck out in my mind was what I already knew....The act of feeding a newborn baby will pretty much take all the live long day (and night). In case you aren't familiar with just how long that is, think about your most anxious stressed out time of your life. Then imagine staying awake day after day after day in that emotional state. At least that's what I am imagining. If you're already a mommy then you know what that's all about. And I'm sure you have the memory but not the actual feeling, as I have forgotten just exactly how it felt to be so morning/evening/night sick that I was about an inch from wishing a bath of hot coals on myself just so I could feel something less painful. I have the memory of it but I can't conjure up that exact razor sharp pain of constantly expelling everything my stomach touched. I've heard a few people tell me food poisoning was worse than giving birth. That statement gives me incredible hope because if I made it through six weeks of phantom food poisoning then I can handle labor as easy as Michelle Duggar with her trap door vagina.

I have another baby class tonight at the pediatricians office. Tom and I will go to that one together. I didn't really pay attention to what the class was about when I signed up. I just saw the word free and jumped on the list. I really just wanted to scope out the peds office to see if this is the place I'll be comfortable taking my tiny fragile little baby girl so they can torture her with sharp needles and cold stethescopes. I don't really know what I am looking for in a pediatrician. I would rather have a woman, as most strange men over the age of forty generally give me bad vibes. But other than breasts I guess I'm looking for someone who doesn't talk to me like I'm 18 years old since apparently that's how old I look to most humans. I'm also looking for a compassionate doctor who takes the time to explain something as if I'm the first person to ever have a child with chicken pox, who doesn't just diagnose things over the phone and write a prescription and walk away. If only my dentist could be my daughters pediatrician then we'd be all set since he's the sweetest caring person I have ever met in the doctor world. Shout out to Dr. Nerrone! The only other thing I am looking for in a doctor is the ability to work side by side with me to raise this child. Someone to treat me as an equal who understands my mommy instincts and won't push things on me if I don't feel ready. Someone who will allow me to refuse a service if I don't feel it's necessary or right for my daughter. I wonder if this fairy tale doctor even exists.

Honestly Pregnant,

Monday, April 12, 2010

Busy time

My computer has been out of commission these past few days so I haven't been able to blog lately. It's making an incredibly loud noise when I turn it on so I've decided (EUREKA!) to just not turn it on and take it in to be looked at on wednesday. Unfortunately this has caused some computer withdrawal that I wasn't prepared for. It seems like when I have access to the computer I hardly ever use it and yet when I can't get to it, I need it more than ever. I desperately need to update my baby gift registry because it has only just now dawned on me that I have selected quite a few very necessary items that are available for target.com online purchase only. So I need to fix that and I don't live in Smalltown, NY anymore so it's not like I can just run up to the local Target and fix it. Driving there and back would be a 2 hour ordeal for a store that's literally less than 5 miles away due to rush hour traffic. So if I want to be home before bedtime, that's not really a quick after work possibility.

My next issue is I have a doctors appointment on wednesday and I was supposed to complete an hour long hospital maternity form online before my appointment. I am not a procrastinater at all so it's shocking that I didn't run home and complete it right away. The thing is, Tom and I are required to do it together and he's been working mega long hours doing overtime and we've been busy with other errands or projects every waking moment. And as my due date approaches, my "waking moments" are becoming smaller windows of time as I get more and more tired. So we haven't been able to get to it. I will have to tell my doc that my cat ate my homework.

I'm starting to get the "when are you due?" question a lot lately. It's a question I haven't really been asked because I haven't really looked very pregnant. I'm glad for that now that I've gone through it but it was incredibly irritating to have to explain to people that I am pregnant and get the "really? You don't look pregnant. You're so tiny" response. I'm sure the women who gained weight will be envious of me but the grass isn't always greener. It's hard to sit there and watch all the visibly pregnant women get all this special treatment while I am making a baby just as hard as they are and I get nothing.

I'm starting to feel lots of anxiety as June 18th is getting closer. I don't feel prepared. I haven't had my shower yet but I feel an uneasy feeling that I won't get what I need or that I forgot about certain things and I will find myself scrambling at the last minute for odds and ends. I know I can always send someone to get them but I am so OCD about it that it keeps me up at night. I have an intense need to be in control of my surroundings which is why I probably should have stayed in therapy. But I didn't feel like I had enough control of the therapy sessions. (Go figure). It's a very deep rooted problem for me and yes, I am aware a baby will tear my life apart if I have control issues. I have very specific odd control issues though. Not knowing what will come next in undetermined babyland isn't really a concern of mine. But handing her to a caretaker other than myself is a concern. One of my biggest control anxiety symptoms is that if I am not there something terrible will happen. This feeling only exists currently with my husband but I am positive it will carry over to Lauren. I did stick with therapy long enough for her to tell me that is a very deep emotional problem that comes from not feeling safe in childhood. I don't want to cause that kind of anxiety in my little kitten. But I would never let either one of us be the kind of human my father was. I promise baby girl.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Circus Freak Clothes

I started packing my suitcase yesterday. Here is a list of the contents:

Travel Sensodyne (thanks Kim)
1 pack of the worlds largest pads
1 pink going home outfit for Lauren

I should probably invest some time and put a few more things in there. Problem is, I have no idea what type of clothes to pack for myself. Is the hospital going to make me wear a hospital gown? Should I bring my own nightgown? I don't own one because I'm not a nightgown person. The last time I wore a nightgown it had a picture of New Kids On The Block on it. I'd really rather wear yoga pants or sweat pants. I'm not sure I really care what the hospital wants me to wear. It's not really about them. It's about me and keeping my legs and southern places warm and cozy. I'd also really like to keep anything with a giant gaping bleeding hole as covered as I possibly can.

In spite of the packing dilemma, I still haven't really thought much about the hospital. I assume I'll just cry the whole time anyway. I'm hoping it will all be a painful blur and all my memory will hold is the moment I see my daughter onward. Even after that point, the general lifelong insomnia I suffer will probably kick in and cause more fatigue than ever thought possible. I can't sleep in hotels so I'm sure a hospital complete with a semi-private roommate, hospital machines, a non-dark room, strange chemical smells, and , oh yeah a crying baby will get in the way just a bit.

Today my belly button decided to start hurting like a pinching bruising kind of pain. It's really more annoying and perplexing than painful. I would say it's ligament pain but it's centered suspiciously perfect at my belly button and no where else. Plus I haven't felt ligament pain at all for the last 7 and a half months. Why start now? I'm sure that's a question I will regret asking as this journey gets closer to the end. I'd really like to get this over with by the way. I would like my body back. And no, veteran moms, I did not mean I want my figure back. I meant I don't feel like sharing a tummy space anymore. I want to lay on my stomach and breathe freely and drink rum. And I'd really love to give up these silly looking pants. I had a co-worker say to me today "it's about time you started wearing maternity clothes". Well FYI I've been wearing maternity clothes buddy, just not big tent clothes that previous generations were subjected to. Except today, the shirt I'm wearing is too big for me so I look like a total slob. Apparently I look typically pregnant in my circus freak clothes. I promise never to wear this tent top again. Back to my fitted shirts after this. I promise.

Tomorrow I will brave walking the long walk up a giant staircase, over the river and back down another staircase across a huge parking lot to a Pirates baseball game. I'm sure my next post will be about how much back pain I am in so stay tuned. 


Monday, April 5, 2010

Holy Belly!

It seems I may have gained some weight over the Easter weekend. With three days off from work and enough food to feed....umm well a pregnant woman, I seemed to have overindulged a bit and eaten more than my pregnancy sized share of food. I can't remember it all very vividly, it's all a blue of tasty goodness.  I vaguely remember ham being there, and cheesecake that i made myself thank you. There were crab legs and macaroni and cake and rice crispy treats and all the easter candy I could eat. I weighed myself at my in-laws yesterday since i don't own a scale and it said i gained 6 pounds since my last doctors appointment which was 2 weeks ago.  I'm assuming thats a little off but we won't know for sure until 2 more weeks when i have my next appointment. 

I spent some of the weekend watching an mtv marathon of "16 and pregnant". I generally don't watch pregnancy shows and I specifically do not watch mtv, but there is something about that show that absolutely captivates me in some kind of trance and I find myself obsessed with these tiny young girls taking on parenthood at an age where I still hadn't even considered the thought of letting go of my virginity. These girls are absolutely sure they want these children and that they are adult enough to care for them.  I highly admire them yet at the same time I'm no fool, I do happen to notice their lack of income, apartment, high school diploma, driver's license, and most of the time their lack of relationship with their imature baby daddy.  All of which is more and more of what fascinates me about this show.  They manage to do the mom thing despite all of these obstacles. I grieve for the loss of their childhood and yet I am just floored at what these young women are able to accomplish in their fragile 16 year old state. Most of them keep their friends close, stay in school, go through labor like a champ, bring baby home, find daycare or sitters, stay in school, and some of them even get a job.  Keep up with the positive life kiddos!

After all the holiday time i spent eating and sleeping, I gritted my teeth, literally, and came back to work today and was greeted by my co-worker with a "Holy Belly!" Ok...ok... i know it's gotten bigger but please....come on.  It didnt become holy in one weekend.  When this belly raises from the dead I'll let you know.  And thanks to all my work buddies for pointing out just how terribly big I have become in 3 short days. 

Honestly Pregnant,

Friday, April 2, 2010

Don't they torture POWs with insomnia?

A woman came up to me today at work by the elevators. I have never met this woman before in my life. She said "oh you're having a girl!". Ummm....how the hell do you know, lady? So she goes on to tell me she has a gift and has never been wrong and she can just tell. That's creepy. I know she's got a 50/50 chance so those odds aren't bad, but immediately after I confirmed the vagina on my unborn child I thought, damn I should have said "nope, you're wrong". Next time I'll have to start throwing people off. Better yet I should start telling people I'm not pregnant and act really offended. I already told the midwife at my doctors office that Tom wasn't the father when she called him "Dad". We laughed it out pretty hard and she said that's a mistake she's made for real several times. Poor woman. Us pregnant women have to get our fun in somewhere since this whole thing isn't exactly a beach vacation. Speaking of which I must attend a nice beach vacation as soon as possible to celebrate not having to share my body anymore. I'm not sure how much longer I can put up with the constant squirming up against my organs. 11 weeks is a lifetime for a worm or buglike creature. I just want her out and in my arms where she will proceed to torment me in ways I never knew were possible. Don't they torture POWs with insomnia? Maybe not.  They should just give them newborn babies to take care of if they really want to give them some serious torture.

Today was pretty productive.  My nesting instinct is kicking in full force and i spend most of my waking hours getting things ready for her and cleaning every spect of dust in my house. I had to force myself to sit down and take a break and eat.  It's such a strong instinct that i truly didnt expect it to be this way.  But i'm going to go with it for now.  Especially because my house is so clean!