Tuesday, December 19, 2006

All Ready to Go

I met with a doula today. She seemed nice and I definitely plan to use her. I live in a smallish town and am related to people that everyone seems to know. That can be good or bad. I had debated on telling her who I was related to because she very likely knows my in-laws. Anyway, we were talking about water labor and births and she related a story about the politics of water birthing at our local hospital. Long story but the short of it is that she has a not-so-good opinion of someone and she wouldn't say names but I'm pretty sure it's my SIL. Time will tell whether that is a good thing or a bad thing. It makes life interesting anyway.

I'm all packed and ready to head out to Houston tomorrow. I'm dreading the actual mechanics of getting both of us and our luggage to the airport and then to my folks' house. I always dread the trip and it always ends up being okay in the end. The only trip that wasn't was the one where I decided it would be a good idea to take the toddler carseat on the airplane. That proved disastrous at the point where G decided she wasn't going to walk and then I couldn't carry both her and the carseat. She's old enough now to stay in her seat and we rent a seat with the car. I also bought a portable DVD player a few trips ago and every time with that she settles in to watch a movie and then promptly falls asleep. So I'm keeping my fingers crossed and taking a good book.

I wasn't able to cram my jacket in the suitcase so hopefully my sweaters will be enough. Houston is forecast to have highs in the 50s and 60s while we're there which should feel downright balmy after the 30s and 40s here.

Thursday night we're accomplishing two very important goals at once: we're meeting up with old friends and getting a Tex-Mex fix at our favorite restaurant. J is flying down after work to spend a few days with us which will be a treat as he will be working starting Christmas day.

Time to go check my packing list one more time to make sure I haven't missed anything important!

Monday, December 18, 2006

20 Weeks: Halfway there!

Today marks the halfway point. Last night we had a gift exchange with my in-laws and the bottle of wine going around was too much to resist. Hello, my name is K and I had a few sips of wine while pregnant. But, given that it was a former OB doing the pouring and I didn't get any grief from my pediatrician sitting next to him, I enjoyed every sip I took!

I'm still not feeling much movement and that continues to bother me. At the ultrasound the baby was in a breech position and I think she stays there pretty consistently as most of the light kicks I feel are on the side where her feet were. And sometimes I feel her little head move on the other side.

Yesterday was my 38th birthday. J bought me a camera that I have been wanting, nay coveting, for quite some time now: a Canon Digital Rebel. Expensive as heck and much bulkier than point and shoot cameras but man is it sweet! The cool thing is that we have a film Canon with several lenses and those lenses fit the digital model as well. I can't wait to get the perfect Christmas shot of G with it!

Wednesday we start our trek across the country to visit the grandparents. G is very excited about it and I'm looking forward to the visit even if I'm not looking forward to the actual travel. The bad thing is that all three of us seem to be coming down with the crud. G has it today and I'm betting tomorrow it will be full-blown. Knock on wood, she's very good when she's sick; just a bit grumpy. So hopefully things will go okay. I remember traveling when I was pregnant with G and so many people went out of their way to be helpful. I'm counting on that this trip!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

19w3d Ultrasound Part 2

How to convey the sense of relief I feel right now?

The ultrasound appt went well. We met first with a genetic counselor who took a health history and asked about all our family. The most challenging part of the whole day was laying out the family trees as she wanted to know about all J's sibbling's children and also all our aunts and uncles.

Then we did the actual ultrasound and I can't really say how long it took - 20 to 30 minutes I'd say. The sonographer was very good and talked to us the whole way through. She didn't tell us actual measurements of things but after every measurement she took she'd tell us what she was measuring and then say something like "That's right on target for an almost-20 week old baby". The baby cooperated beautifully. Just a few minutes into the ultrasound the tech brought up the image of the open legs and immediately said it was a girl. A little while later she got an even better view and you could clearly see the three lines. My placenta is indeed in the front which is obstructing some feeling of movements.

After the ultrasound J and I went out of for lunch and we were acting like two giddy teenagers! We talked some about the baby but we talked about a wide range of topics. It's been a while since we've done that. Probably almost 2 years. It hit me at one point how much this whole issue of getting and staying pregnant was weighing us and our relationship down. It's almost like a huge weight has been lifted off both of us. I realized that, regardless of the outcome, we're going to be okay. I can admit now that there have been times lately when I've wondered.

I was running errands this afternoon and I had my first person ask me "So when are you due?". Followed by the inevitable "Do you know if it's a girl or a boy?". I told him it would be our second girl and he then asked what I'm sure will be an oft-repeated question: "Did you want a boy?". I can honestly say that I am thrilled beyond belief to know it's a girl. Of course, I would have been happy with a boy. But I think deep down I wanted a little sister for my daughter. Plus, what would I do with all these girl clothes I've been accumulating?!!!

I think I will sleep much better tonight. I haven't had a really good night's sleep in a week or so and I'm sure it's been the anticipation of today. Hopefully it's all downhill from here!

19w3d Ultrasound

The short story and some pics for now: Everything looked great and it's a girl!

Monday, December 11, 2006

19 Weeks

One of my humorous tickers said this morning: "Only 20 more weeks until Mommy can enjoy a margarita.... or five". Yeah, right on course. I remember joking with J before G was born that we should bring a bottle of wine to the hospital to celebrate. We didn't but I finally got a glass just a few days after G was born. Wine never tasted so good. This time I'm serious about bringing wine. Or at least something alcoholic. The sad part is that my wine stash is seriously depleted right now and can one reasonably buy several cases of wine with a big huge belly? So I'm dropping big hints to J as to what this year's gifts should be.

I've pretty much lost my belly button. There is no mistaking by anyone now that this is a pregnant belly. Being only barely halfway through, it scares me to think how big this one is going to be. With G, I hid my condition at work until I was more than 6 months along. No chance of that this time!

I will be turning 38 on Sunday. That's getting awfully close to 40. I don't feel almost 40. I thought almost-40-year-olds were supposed to feel really mature and able to handle anything. I suppose that's what my kids will think about me. If they only knew!

I am looking forward to the ultrasound on Thursday with an equal mix of anticipation and dread. I feel some movement but not as much as I would like to. I'm hoping they'll tell me it's just because of the location of my placenta.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Digital Musings

There are some professions that you just never quite get away from. You exist within that role 24 hours a day. Being a Mom comes to mind as one. Being a doctor is another. Countless times I've been with my BIL and SIL and seen them dealing with complete strangers who suddenly have need of medical advice because there's a doctor around. Believe it or not, being a computer professional is another. My speciality is programming internet applications. But as soon as people hear the word 'computer', all of a sudden I'm expected to be the master of all things computer and fix whatever problem has been bugging them lately. For those of you who are not very computer savvy, it's a bit like asking your dermatologist to diagnose the ringing in your ears. Fixing problems with the Windows operating system and associated applications is something that I can sometimes do under diress but definitely not something I enjoy.

Which is what made me groan especially loud last night when my desktop computer froze and won't boot past a blue screen of death now. There was a time in my life when I would have invested countless hours trying to diagnose and fix the problem. And there would have been more than a few swear words involved along the way. There was a time.... This is not the time. Hours and hours of uninterrupted computer time? Yeah, right. Fortunately I already have a laptop that can easily replace my desktop, although I will miss the convenience of being able to keep it upstairs and not have to tote it around. One of the applications I depend most upon is my financial tools and fortunately I had the foresight to have regularly backed up those files. I now have access to all my financial data with just a few days' gap on my laptop. Whew. I will definitely sleep better tonight. So now begins the painful process of getting all my most-used applications configured so that I can scan and print and stuff like that.

Now, being a computer professional, you'd think I would have meticulously kept data backups. Buzzzz.... Try again. I did back up my financial stuff because I think I would experience a complete nervous breakdown if I couldn't instantly pull up how much I spent at Target on the 12th of November in 1999. Seriously. I'm just that way. And I do have CD backups of all my pictures. Except the cute ones I had taken in the last few days. But what a pain in the butt to have to load all my backups onto the laptop and do I even have enough disk space to do that? So, lesson learned. I'm about to go consult Mr. Google right now about the best backup alternative. Once I buy something I plan to take it and the desktop to the local computer shop and pray that they can retrieve my data onto it.

This post has been provided as a cautionary tale. Everyone always tells you to back up and no one ever does it and then disaster inevitably strikes. Actually, I have been quite lucky: this is the first time that I have not been able to just transfer data from the old computer to the new one. But just a few months ago my Dad's disk croaked and he lost everything. If only I had learned from his experience. So please learn from mine!

Monday, December 04, 2006

18 Weeks

So here I am at 18 weeks. I've finally gotten all my maternity shirts out and washed. I have some non-maternity shirts that I can wear but most of them are too tight in the bust. I don't know what it is about maternity clothing but it really seems to accentuate the bump in front. I scored an awesome dress shirt at Goodwill the other day that will be perfect for holiday wearing. Last week I got a cheap black velvet maternity dress off of ebay but I don't know if I will end up wearing it or not. It depends on whether I'm able to find some maternity hose to go with it because I know there is no way in heck I could get on regular hose at this point!

At night I now sleep between 2 pillows. I am naturally a back sleeper so I learned with G to use pillows on either side; that way when I roll over I don't end up fully on my back. I also pulled out a stuffed animal (yes, I'm sleeping with a stuffed animal now!) that I bought with G that fits perfectly under my belly to make sleeping more comfortable.

I'm feeling the baby kick more now but only at night in bed or during the day when I sit quietly and feel for it.

Speaking of kicking, G kicked me very nicely in the belly today. Between those sorts of kicks and having to carry her around, it makes me amazed that any mom of a toddler can get through subsequent pregnancies. I still haven't told G about the baby but maybe she senses something because this week she started trying to relive her own baby-hood. She's always asking me to hold her sippy cup and feed her "like a baby" and today before naptime she wanted to sit in the chair and rock while she drank her milk. We haven't done that in ages and it made me as nostalgic as her for reliving old times. I'm beginning to understand why the baby of the family is just that - a baby. I anticipate that I will do everything I can to prolong every phase that the new baby goes through because I know it will be the last time for me to experience all of that.

J is gone again for an extended time. I probably won't see him for at least a week, maybe more. So I've already booked with the sitter for a "day off" this week. Next week: the big ultrasound. I received all the paperwork the other day and it was rather daunting to read it all. Depending on the outcome of the ultrasound, they can do an amnio right then and there if I choose. I truly hope I won't have to make that decision. I also hope that J will end up being in town because the only thing worse than having to make that decision would be to have to make it alone.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

4 Months

There have been a number of people who ask me how far along I am and when I tell them the number of weeks, they immediately start converting it into months. Fortunately for my mathematical sanity, there are approximately 9 months between the beginning of August and the end of May. So it's pretty easy for me to approximate months, especially when I can't remember exactly the number of weeks I currently am. So at the end of November I completed four months of pregnancy. What's that phrase I so often bandy about? Oh yeah: I can't believe I made it this far. I'm almost halfway done. And only 12 more days until the definitive ultrasound. 4 Months. 5 to go.