Tuesday, June 30, 2009


I LOVE yoga. Back when I worked in social services and had an actual defined 'lunch break', I would do yoga 3-4 times a week at lunch. While it's so low-impact it doesn't have the same benefits for your body crazy cardio does, I a.) HATE the gym (that should be fun when baby's here and I'm left with a bunch of extra fat!), and b.) my bones are extremely sensitive, and I get stress fractures from things like running, etc. I know it sounds crazy, but I've had stress fractures in my shins after a WEEK of running/etc. So low-impact works for me.

Not only that, but my life is stressful. Lovely, yes, but stressful. Yoga is the only thing that calms me down and gets me centered. In short, it's my prozac. I LOVE yoga.

After I left my old job, however, I didn't have time for it anymore, since after working all day, hitting the gym sounds damn near impossible. Add to that the fatigue that accompanies lifting a finger during pregnancy, and it's been nearly 8 months since my last yoga class :(

I'm thinking, though, of attempting to take it back up. It's not too extreme to do during pregnancy, especially since my body seems to fall right into it - I was a badass at yoga from the beginning, getting into level 3 & 4 positions - and the less effort it takes me to get my pre-pregnancy body back after the baby is here, THE BETTER! I have been crippled before this point, however, by my fear of miscarriage. While you can spare me the bit about exercise being great for pregnant women, since I've heard it as well, there are some studies that find it can have contraindications before the 18th week of pregnancy, and therefore, I'm waiting til the 18th week in ~4 weeks.

Any other mommies-to-be doing yoga out there?

Monday, June 29, 2009


I am NOT one of those women who feel that 'natural childbirth' should be a priority for a woman. See that happy, smiling woman above, not screaming at her husband? Neither does she! (Note: I'm not delusional enough to think I'll be smiling my way through labor, don't worry!) Not only do I have zero to prove to the doctor or my family or anyone that may be privy to the details of my labor, but plain and simple: I think women who advocate for natural childbirth are plum crazy!

Do they realize where the push for having 'natural' births came from? ClergyMEN in the 1800's felt that because of the line from the Old Testament, "In Sorrow Thou Shalt Bring Forth Children", that is was God's divine will that women suffer through giving birth. Talk about bullshit! So for all these self-proclaimed feminist women making every attempt to guilt-trip other women into natural births, realize that your belief is steeped in sexism and the same type of notions that gave way to burning women at the stake. Enough said.

Not to mention, I'd like to have at least a chance in hell at looking back and saying, "I wouldn't mind doing THAT again." After all, I'd like to have a second child some day (although ask me again in late January!). If an epidural is what it takes, big f'ing deal, folks. Why should labor be unbearably painful if there IS another way? It shouldn't be. Anyone going the natural route - you're nuts. Would you have your appendix removed without being anesthetized? No? Why not? What about if you were passing a kidney stone, and the doctor offered you medication to ease your pain? Would you feel you were less of a woman to accept it? If so, you're apparently just a stupid woman. That shit hurts! Allow your birth to be more enjoyable by spending less time screaming at the top of your lungs, and more time managing your pain so that you can focus on what's really important: you're about to meet your baby!

My doc is already well aware of my desire for an epidural. During my first internal exam I was surprisingly uncomfortable and took that opportunity to let him know in no uncertain terms that I had NOTHING to prove other than my intelligence and interest in pain-management techniques of the drug variety. There will be no visualization and meditation at MY labor. Even so, I remind him at EVERY. SINGLE. VISIT. Something tells me he'll know when the times comes though. Something about screaming, "Get me a g$#d#$& epidural RIGHT NOW" may tip him off!

Happy Monday, everyone! If all goes well, I'll be induced 26 weeks from today. AKA forever from now :(

Saturday, June 27, 2009

13 Weeks!

Hooray for having measured 2 days ahead on Wednesday! I'm VERY excited to be at 13 weeks! After today, just 6 days left in my first trimester!!!

I have been having a lot of back pain and a wee bit of cramping, but I've heard it's normal, and baby was fine at both appointments this week, so I'm trying to be calm about it. If it continues through the weekend, I'll call the doc on Monday just for peace of mind.

Baby's Development This Week:
Fingerprints have formed on your baby's tiny fingertips, her veins and organs are clearly visible through her still-thin skin, and her body is starting to catch up with her head — which makes up just a third of her body size now. If you're having a girl, she now has more than 2 million eggs in her ovaries. Your baby is almost 3 inches long (the size of a medium shrimp) and weighs nearly an ounce.

Friday, June 26, 2009

The Crib is Up!

Yesterday, feeling particularly productive, a friend came over and we put up the crib in the baby's room:Yay! Doesn't it look good all assembled? It'll look better with a bit of bedding, though!

I also went to Target and started a registry there as well, since the 'travel system' I like is available there and not at Babies R Us! Yay for baby stuff!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

NT Screening!

First things first, here are pictures of the baby:

(Baby lounging back with hand by face and other hand by head - he/she looks very comfy! Don't worry - those are knees - feet are out of view!)

(A closer shot of baby's profile. I think he/she looks like me ;)
(That's an aerial shot of the top of the baby...those five dots to the far right side are the fingers on one hand. This shot refused to come out any clearer on my camera, but you can see one foot w/ toes and the other hand slightly also!! The butterfly-wing shape looking into the head is the two lobes of the brain developing! How EXCITING!)

OK, more to come later. I'm far too busy today for my own good.

Important points:

*Nuchal measurement/nasal bone were on target for the gestational age, which means my risk of having a baby with downs (prior to the bloodwork coming back, which will come in next Weds and will give me the best overall picture) are less than .01%. SWEET.
*Baby measured 12w4d, rather than 12w2d, which gives me two of my long lost days back. That coincides with when I am 99.9% certain I conceived, so there ya go. Due date moved up to 1/2, despite the fact that baby is coming in 2009 if we can help it! Someday, when I realize how to edit my lilypie baby countdown settings it may reflect the change, but they change my due date often enough I'll probably just leave it.

My bloodwork comes in next Weds, but I'm feeling very confident after the ultrasound. Hopefully all is well in there - he/she looks comfortable enough at least!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Registry Started!

Ok, ok, so I know it's early, but I AM EXCITED! I cannot wait to hold my son or daughter in my arms, and since I can't for six more months, what better way to make this feel tangible than heading to Babies R Us?

Today I registered for the basics - things that don't require me to know the gender (breast pump, bottles, changing table pad, crib mattress cover, aka the less interesting stuff!). You can find my registry online at Babies R' Us!

Drumroll, please!

In 34 days, on the glorious 27th of July, we'll be finding out the sex of the baby! YAY!

Deny me a 16-week ultrasound and think I'm going to just sit back and accept it? I THINK NOT. I'll be heading at 17 weeks to a private ultrasonographer in Round Rock called Miracle in Sight (it's ok to have a good laugh - it's cheesy) for their 'gender package' ultrasound. The price? A mere $75! WELL WORTH IT. A girl needs to get her registry goin', ya hear? Plus, not knowing is really putting a damper in my shopping urges! I already have the crib, changing table, crib mattress and rocking chair..I'm running out of gender neutral products to buy here!

Anyhow, mark your calendars, and be ready for a big and obvious announcement on 7/27. My appointment is at 10:30, so I'm hoping to have it up by noon! :)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Oh yeah, and...

...the 12-wk belly shot! It's really coming along, despite my lack of actual weight gain. Baby is about the size of a lime, so it's more swelling/bloating/my uterus getting bigger:

Nursery Pictures!

Here are a few preliminary pictures of the nursery!

Baby rocking chair and sunset out of the double windows :)
View in from the bedroom door:

Changing table, mostly assembled:
View from closet:

Home of the future crib:

12-Week Appointment!!!

Lord, thank you for getting me to 12 weeks! I have been WAITING for this day since the second I found out. I know I still have a little bit of time before things are really and truly in the clear, and even then, nothing is certain, but 12 wks is a good place to be!

First things first, about this morning's appointment:
*No ultrasound (WHAT A DISAPPOINTMENT!), but heard the heartbeat and he/she's going strong at 167...even higher than last time! They said it sounds great!
*I weighed in 1lb, 4oz less than at my last appointment...suh-weeeeeeeeet! And that's with a.) having been on vacation last week, and b.) having gone to a buffet for dinner last night. A buffet, people. What's happening to me? I can admit, though, it was the best food I've ever eaten in my entire life.
*Dr. R (my new best friend and personal hero) said that a.) he expects me to gain ~30lbs since i'm 'this big' *gesturing to his pinky finger* (his words that eternally made him my new favorite person!), and most importantly, HE THINKS HE CAN INDUCE ME AROUND 12/28. HECK YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Next appointment: 7/20 :) No ultrasound then, either. Which means, sadly, no finding out the sex until 20 weeks, unless the MFM Specialist I'm going to see Weds will see me again before then to do it, since I'll probably start seeing him monthly or every other month in the near future. This will be determined at my appointment Weds.
How baby's developing:
The most dramatic development this week: reflexes. Your baby's fingers will soon begin to open and close, his toes will curl, his eye muscles will clench, and his mouth will make sucking movements. In fact, if you prod your abdomen, your baby will squirm in response, although you won't be able to feel it. His intestines, which have grown so fast that they protrude into the umbilical cord, will start to move into his abdominal cavity about now, and his kidneys will begin excreting urine into his bladder.

Meanwhile, nerve cells are multiplying rapidly, and in your baby's brain, synapses are forming furiously. His face looks unquestionably human: His eyes have moved from the sides to the front of his head, and his ears are right where they should be. From crown to rump, your baby-to-be is just over 2 inches long (about the size of a lime) and weighs half an ounce.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Pregnant Woman Behaving Badly!

Lately, I've been a bit emotional. I've been known to experience the occasional emotional outburst prior to this pregnancy, but nothing like of late. I have NO tolerance for frustration, per usual, but combine that with my inability to wait for ANYTHING at this point (ie when I'm hungry I need food immediately, when I have to go to the bathroom, I have to go RIGHT THEN!), and I have been on less-than-perfect behavior!

Take for example the other day during a trip to Barnes & Noble. This woman was walking in a direct path towards me, and thinking that she may collide with me at any second, I politely said, 'Excuse me.' What can I say? I'm southern, I have good manners. It was at the point, however, when she IMPOLITELY decided to disregard my warning and slam directly into my tender, pregnant body that I decided to lose my shit. 'I saaaaaid excuuuuse meee,' I chided, clearly having lost my mind. Then, to further piss me off, she proceeded to stare at me blankly. What, do people in Florida not speak English?! I thought to myself, furious. Why so furious, you wonder? I was just a tad hungry.

While I always realize after the fact that I'm being irrational, and that the level of my anger does NOT match the transgression*, I just cannot help myself at the time.

*Note: At home, this behavior tends to be justified.

Friday, June 19, 2009

FINAL NT Screening Update!

Ok, so final verdict: NT Screening WILL be taking place, Wednesday, June 24th at 10:30AM...

Now that I've gotten my way, naturally I'm nervous as all hell, and having second thoughts. Hormones, OR just plain me?! I'll play the hormone card. I'm not above that.

Anyways, stayed tuned for major updates this week after my 12-wk ultrasound on Monday, and the Nuchal Translucency Screening on Weds!! I'm very excited for such detailed and frequent looks at baby, but nervous just the same. Here's hoping (and mainly praying!) all goes well this week!!! Hopefully, though, they'll set my due date back to 12/31!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Baby's First Stuffed Animal!

Earlier, after a long day of working in the sun, I decided to splurge on a little outlet mall trip here in Destin. Not only did I buy my first pair of maternity pants (gasp! Don't worry - not BC I need them quite yet but because they were 75% off), but I got baby their first stuffy - this adorable giraffe:

I'm starting to think it's a boy, judging by my purchases....

NT Screening Update

Just when I had finally made a decision and called my doctor last week, I got a call from the Maternal-Fetal Medicine Specialist (MFM) informing me that my insurance only covers the ultrasound and not the ~$100 bloodwork that accompanies. Damn. Upon hearing that, I decided to cancel, since it wasn't 'necessary' and it was yet another expense.

I have since reconsidered. I was pretty set on doing it at the time I called my doctor about the referral, and so I was disappointed at the thought of not doing it after all. I would gladly pay to find out the sex - why shouldn't my baby's health be of the same tantamount importance to me?

I called just now to see if they still have the appointment open that they ere going to give me for next Tuesday at 11. If they do, ill take it as a sign that I should do it and schedule/pay accordingly. And if not, then ill let it be.

I'm supposed to hear back today or tomorrow, so ill know soon!

Monday, June 15, 2009

11 weeks down, 29 to go!

11 weeks! I'm getting closer and closer to that lovely, deep-breath-inducing second trimester. Already, I am feeling better and better, at least fatigue-wise. The past 3 days I haven't been able to nap, and though I'm normally passed out on the couch by 10PM on those days, it's a feat in and of itself that I'm not passed out by noon!
About baby's development this week:

Your baby, just over 1 1/2 inches long and about the size of a fig, is now almost fully formed. Her hands will soon open and close into fists, tiny tooth buds are beginning to appear under her gums, and some of her bones are beginning to harden.

She's already busy kicking and stretching, and her tiny movements are so effortless they look like water ballet. These movements will become more frequent as her body grows and becomes more developed and functional. You won't feel your baby's acrobatics for another month or two — nor will you notice the hiccuping that may be happening now that her diaphragm is forming.

One more week until the 'safe zone'!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

First Trimester Travel?

As excited as I am to be heading to Destin, Florida tomorrow for five days, I am a bit nervous about traveling. Anyone else done any first trimester traveling? I know doctors don't tend to restrict travel until the third trimester, and I called to inform his office I would be out-of-town in case he had an objection, but I'm still nervous. Luckily, I haven't had much 'morning' sickness, so it shouldn't impact my flight, but I do get a bit airsick, which may be exacerbated by my pregnancy. I guess it remains to be seen! I'm flying Continental, so I'm not worried about a shody airline or non-pressurized cabin (do these even exist?!), but still...any tips? Concerns? Reassuring advice?

On a positive note, here are some pictures of where I'm headed:

Bring on the beach vacation! I'll be back to update and post pictures next Friday!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Top 5 Name Lists.

Top five names I really like for a GIRL:
  • Ava Elizabeth
  • Reagan Elizabeth
  • Natalia Elizabeth
  • Caroline Grace
  • Ainsley Elizabeth

Top five names I am considering for a BOY:

  • Benjamin James
  • James Benjamin
  • Noah Benjamin
  • Blaine Patrick
  • James Patrick


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Nursery Ideas SO FAR.

These are all VERY preliminary, since we can't find out the sex of the baby until at least another six weeks. Just the same, I've been so insanely excited I've been at Babies 'R Us constantly, and looking at bedding online at night, trying to find things I like. Here's what I've come up with so far:

For Boys:
I ADORE this!! I think it's so cute, and not over the top with any theme, but still looks baby-like and not like it belongs in the room of an adult/teenager/whatever.

Love this also! Even more now that I'm looking at it again...love the colors - not too bright, not too subdued. Very cute! This is the first one (for a boy) I looked at and said, "I love it!" rather than, "I could put up with that!"

Love the fish theme, esp. since our master bed & bathroom are done in ocean-type themes as well. Fish and bubbles are always cute!

Doesn't this just scream little baby badass to you? And I think that it'll be favored by D, who, ahem, is struggling with the news of the baby, to put it nicely. I think this is adorable and unique, which is something I'm interested in.

For Girls (Note: I'm running into a constant struggle with girl bedding being WAY over the top with ruffles, frou frou, looking as though pepto-bismol through up on the display room, so there are less ideas in this area so far, despite my wanting a little girl!)

Really feeling this bedding right now! Love the color combo, the cute accompaniment of the plaid/dots of the bird, and the fact that it's feminine, but not over the top. Birds are cute, anyhow!

I, too, joined the bandwagon five or so years ago that thinks that brown and pink or brown and blue are ideal color combinations. Love it! This may be a bit mod for a baby though...but then again, something they could grow into as they morph into a toddler!

This really caught my eye as well, despite that it wasn't what I was thinking for my little one. Maybe because I grew up in a house where my mom collected elephants, and who better to pay homage to than your mother?

As always, opinions/ideas are welcome, though don't be hurt if I take it with a grain of salt. Mama gets final say. You're thinking, "Clearly she means mama AND daddy?" Ha! If you're thinking that, you obviously don't know me ;)

What if?!

As pregnant women, we play a lot of the 'what if' game. What if something is wrong with the baby? What if I'm not prepared for motherhood? What if I can't handle the demands of a newborn? Stop. Trust me - I've gone through a lot of less-than-ideal 'what if' situations in the past couple months, and it's not helping anything. Know that your child has high odds of making it to term safely and without complication, and coming into the world happy and healthy. As a fellow hormone-fueled pregnant woman, I know how hard it is to believe these things, but look around you! Would there be THIS much traffic in Austin if the majority of women miscarried, or most babies were born with crippling disabilities? I think not. My advice? Have faith, pray if that's your thing (and even give it a try if it's not - you'll be surprised at the comfort you find!), and keep hoping for a positive outcome.

One 'what if' that I've been happy to indulge, however, is this: What if everything that has happened in my life up until now has been to get me to THIS moment, THIS pregnancy and, ultimately, THIS baby? Sure makes some of my weaker moments easier to bear, that's for sure! What if every job I've ever had or turned down, every loser I ever dated and the winners that slipped away, every choice I made along the road, both easy and incredibly difficult to live with, were to help me to get here? That time I drank so much Jager it's a wonder I'm alive? Yep - stupid in retrospect (and even as soon as the next morning!), but do I feel certain that my hard-partying ways are behind me, and I can look forward to motherhood without thinking of all the youth I'm giving up. Was living and working in NYC difficult for me, as a woman all alone trying to find my way, and so incredibly homesick for Austin I couldn't think straight? Absolutely. But I had always wanted to spend a year in NYC, and now I can't think of a single thing I will regret not doing before starting a family. How much easier to swallow does our past become when we learn to recognize where it has gotten us? So, yes, while there are things I am sorry for having done, and I regret my intention at the time, or the childish way I behaved toward a person, I am thankful for my life, from birth until now, and all of my mistakes, if THIS is what they were steering me towards.

So, the next time you start to play the 'what if' game, researching miscarriage rates and rates of Downs Syndrome and other chromosomal and congenital abnormalities (trust me - I'm THAT girl also!), take a deep breath and ask yourself instead, "What if every choice I've ever made has lead me to this moment and to the beautiful child growing inside me?"

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Nuchal Translucency Screening.

Anyone have any thoughts or experiences with this first trimester screening test that they could share with me? I have to decide by the end of this week if I am interested in it, and I have mixed feelings. Here is the description.

While I wouldn't want an amniocentesis, since the procedure brings an increased risk of miscarriage (which I'm already concerned enough about!), and I wouldn't want to terminate if I found out I was having a baby with special needs, I am a bit of an information junkie, and would like to be forewarned as to give me time to prepare and research, etc. The test is not at all risky: In fact, it's just another look at baby! It would put me at four ultrasounds for my first trimester! SWEET.

The only thing that really concerns me and puts me off is the high rate of false positives. While expecting a special needs newborn and delivering a healthy one is a better surprise than the other way around, I am already experiencing ever-increasing levels of stress about this whole ordeal! Also, I'm not in a high-risk group, seeing as how I was 24 at the time of conception, and most mothers that opt to do screenings are in the 35+ group.

Thoughts? Opinions? Bad or good experiences with this test? ALL opinions/insight welcome! I have to decide within the next three days :/

Monday, June 8, 2009

Development at 10 weeks!

Though he's barely the size of a kumquat — a little over an inch or so long, crown to bottom — and weighs less than a quarter of an ounce, your baby has now completed the most critical portion of his development. This is the beginning of the so-called fetal period, a time when the tissues and organs in his body rapidly grow and mature.He's swallowing fluid and kicking up a storm. Vital organs — including his kidneys, intestines, brain, and liver (now making red blood cells in place of the disappearing yolk sac) — are in place and starting to function, though they'll continue to develop throughout your pregnancy.

If you could take a peek inside your womb, you'd spot minute details, like tiny nails forming on fingers and toes (no more webbing) and peach-fuzz hair beginning to grow on tender skin.In other developments:

Your baby's limbs can bend now.
His hands are flexed at the wrist and meet over his heart, and his feet may be long enough to meet in front of his body.
The outline of his spine is clearly visible through translucent skin, and spinal nerves are beginning to stretch out from his spinal cord.
Your baby's forehead temporarily bulges with his developing brain and sits very high on his head, which measures half the length of his body.
From crown to rump, he's about 1 1/4 inches long. In the coming weeks, your baby will again double in size — to nearly 3 inches.

The last 10 weeks!

The last SIX weeks might be a more appropriate title, since six weeks ago tomorrow, I received the biggest news of my life: I'm pregnant.

Was I initially headed to my laptop to spread the good news and start this blog? Eh, more like I was initially terrified, uncertain and did I mention completely scared shitless?! But I knew in my heart to trust my heart, which told me that I should be excited, and to embrace this for the wonderful news it really is! After many a late-night conversation, trip to the doctor's office (and one to the E.R. when I had the flu!), and my rabid collecting of baby books, pamphlets and advice, both welcome and unwelcome, I have arrived here today at the ten week mark as happy and excited as I have ever been! Holy crap, folks! With a little luck and a lot of prayer in the next few weeks, I'm having a baby!

Landmarks so far:
We first heard the heartbeat at 6 weeks, 4 days, at a strong and healthy 120 bpm. I was so shocked and emotional that his or her heart was actually beating, I forgot to ask for a picture of the ultrasound, but luckily I got this one at my next visit, at 8w1d:

His or her heartbeat was 161 at the second visit. Girl? One can hope!

This was my tummy at 10w1d. It doesn't look like much, but it was significantly more fit before, I promise!

As far as the first ten weeks have gone, I have had a couple evenings where I threw up so vigorously I was certain I had food poisoning of some sort, but then instantly felt better and went about the rest of my night....fun, I assure you. Other than that, I'm nauseous from time to time, and definitely gag often, especially at the sight of red meat or anything uncooked. Even the word 'uncooked' is enough to make me retch. I've also begun sleeping constantly, clocking in at least two hour naps everyday, which if you know me, you know is my idea of heaven! I loved a good nap prior to this, but now, with an excuse, ohhhhhh yeaaaaaaaah. Luckily, as a nanny to a two-year-old, I have time to nap when she does. Perfection!

As far as my due date goes, I'm due on 1/4/10, though we're already planning for a 12/30 (ish) induction because frankly, I can't meet my deductible and out-of-pocket max for this year AND next...and what's five days?! Not to mention, I'm a pretty small person (at least I am right NOW), and the women in my family tend to have big babies. Giving birth to an 8-pounder vs. a 10-pounder?! YES PLEASE.

That's all for now, folks! I have my next ultrasound at 12w1d on 6/23, and will post a few updates between now and then! Hoping to have a more significant bump in a few weeks!

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