Category Archives: My life

36 weeks

After my last entry, I had a couple of Bad Days.  When I’m not pregnant and wake up not feeling well, I assume I’m getting sick or ate something and will feel better either imminently, or worst case, in a week or so if I’m sick.  When pregnant, I have no idea why I’m feeling lousy or when I’ll feel better.  This time, it was a couple days, and now I’m just back to feeling large, awkward, and moderately uncomfortable, but not bad.  I’m still mostly able to sleep, with maybe one wake-up a night, which is nice.  By the end of my last pregnancy, I was up every hour to use the bathroom unless I took Unisom, so I’m kind of wondering if that’s coming this time, or what.

My parents will be getting here a week from yesterday, which will be great, as we’ll no longer have to worry about childcare if I go into labor.  Hopefully we won’t all want to kill each other by the time they go home.  If the baby doesn’t come until 40 weeks, it’s going to be a LONG visit.  She wouldn’t hang around that long, would she?  My last two surprised me.  I did not expect in any way that my first would get here early, and yet she did.  Perhaps this one will surprise me in the other direction!

In other news, I’m entertaining myself by boots shopping.  I ordered a couple pairs by Sam Edelman.  (At least one pair will go back.)

Thoughts?  I’m looking for footwear to go with skinny jeans that will also keep my feet warm.  (My only pair of maternity pants also happen to be skinny black jeans, so they will work prior to baby getting here.  The in-between post-baby nothing fits phase will be annoying, but in past, I’ve just bought stuff for cheap in larger sizes off eBay, and that’s worked out pretty well.)

In other news, I’m trying to decide whether to buy a cheaper desk off Wayfair for L, or sale-watch one on Pottery Barn, which would still be a bit more pricey.  Any desk recommendations?

I’m not getting any smaller, folks:

34 weeks

34 weeks!  I feel really good about this.  Every week, I feel excited and happy to have reached another milestone.  Then my mood kind of sours as the week drags on forever.

At my last appointment, I had a high BP reading for the first time ever in my life.  “High” in pregnancy means in excess of 140/90.  If you are either over 140 OR over 90, you are diagnosed with gestational hypertension.  Now, to get a good BP reading, you are supposed to first sit for five minutes.  I had not been sitting for five minutes, so the doctor re-took it, and it dropped from 130/90 (gestational hypertension) to normal.  Thank God.  If I am diagnosed with GH, the doctor told me she will induce at 37 weeks.  High BP in pregnancy is not something to mess around with as it can be fatal in the worst case or have some nasty effects on both mom and baby.  So if I did in fact develop high BP, I would go along with whatever the doctor recommended.  However, I would strongly like to not be induced at 37 weeks.  I’m worried about the baby’s readiness for birth that early – even a day or two in the NICU would be really hard, and you just never know.  And I also worry that labor would be harder if my body wasn’t ready.  (I was dilated to something like 4 cm at 36 weeks with my last baby, so probably my body would be ready, but still.)

The doctor asked me to cut sodium and start taking BP twice a day at home.  If you’re keeping track, I’m now cutting carbs, sugar and salt, and taking blood sugar four times a day and BP twice a day.  Working from home, it’s not that big of a deal, but yeah.  I’ll be glad to return to regular life without all this for sure.  (Ponder your diet for a minute and ask yourself what you could actually still eat if you cut carbs and salt.   So many things have one or the other.  Obviously, diabetes doesn’t mean cutting all carbs, but you have to be very vigilant.  For example, the large honeycrisp apple I eat for lunch maxes or nearly maxes my carb allocation for that meal.  When you add in the complication of pregnancy-induced heartburn, it gets even harder.  I feel like an old person.)

The good news is that my sugar levels are excellent, and my BP has been very low at home.  After the doctor’s visit, I was very concerned about BP, since it is so common in pregnancy, even more so if you have GD, and because it is very dangerous if it starts to climb.  But I’ve concluded it was a false alarm caused by the stress of the doctor’s visit.

We gave away or sold a lot of our baby stuff after B.  We didn’t know if we wanted another, and we knew we didn’t want one soon.  We also have somewhat limited storage space in our house – if I could change one thing, I’d have a 3-car garage.  My Dad raised me to always keep your cars in the garage, so I can’t bring myself to use half our 2-car garage for storage.  Baby stuff takes up a lot of space!  In any case, Amazon gives you a two-time 15% discount on purchases off your registry.  I finally made the first of my two discounted purchases, buying a stroller, car seat, swing, some more nursing pads, and some other items.  I’m sure you won’t be surprised to hear there was much agonizing over the stroller selection.  I ended up buying an Uppababy Cruz, which was a bit of a splurge, but I’m kind of excited about it.  It’s going to be like Christmas around here over the next couple of days.

In other news, the designer of the last quilt I made (with the hearts) asked if she could put my quilt in her newsletter.  That kind of made my day!

labor dread

We met with a doula today.  Talking about labor is really hard for me.  I am just dreading it.  I want to have the option of pain relief, and if I don’t get induced, I almost certainly will not have the chance to get an epidural.  And remembering the pain of the last half hour of my last birth just scares me.  It was just so painful and there wasn’t a damn thing anyone could do about it.  Mostly, I’ve been coping by trying not to think about it, but obviously it’s the kind of topic you have to discuss with a doula.

I am also frightened of the trip to the hospital.  If my parents are here, it should be easy enough.  I will probably be asking them to come at 37 weeks.  In that case, Jonathan and I can just go.  The idea of trying to get the kids to a caregiver or take them with us just makes me anxious.  So, let’s assume my parents are here and H and I can just go.  Most likely, I’ll be in a lot of pain by the time we get there.  I don’t want to go through transition in the car.  I especially don’t want to give birth in the car.  That’s unlikely.  But very painful labor in the car?  Pretty likely.  At least we have a nice car.  I’d much rather labor in our new Suby than our 17 year old Ford Focus.

All of this makes me more inclined to induce, but I’d have to do it around 37 weeks, and that’s not ideal for baby.  If my baby ended up in the NICU because I was afraid of labor pain, I’d have a hard time forgiving myself.  But an unattended birth out of the hospital isn’t safe either, and that’s definitely a possibility if we don’t induce.

Of course, with my current placenta position, I’ll be having a C-section in 6 weeks.  My ultrasound next week should give me a pretty good idea of whether that will happen or not.

Ug.  I wish I was a mentally tougher person.

I have been feeling a bit better.  A couple weeks ago, the baby shifted and settled in on my bladder, and for a while, I felt like I needed to go, like urgently, pretty much 100% of the time.  It was miserable.  I can’t really figure out why / how this happened, but thankfully, it passed, and that made a huge difference to my comfort and happiness.  I’d also been having a lot of trouble with acid reflux, even waking up at night with my mouth feeling like it was full of acid.  It was pretty rough.  I finally broke down and started taking Zantac (carcinogens or no) and now after taking it every day for a week, I’m really not having any acid reflux whatsoever.  This has also had a huge impact on my general comfort and happiness.

My sister shared her wedding photos, and there are so many good ones.  There will definitely be some going on my wall.  Her photographer did an exceptional job.  I love the tone of the pictures as well.

In other news, I have been really worrying about childbirth, and I don’t know how to just take a chill pill about it.  I’ve done it twice.  Women all over the world have done it once or twice or several times, often without any kind of pain meds.  It’s also not happening for an absolute minimum of five or six more weeks unless something goes wrong, most likely for seven or eight weeks.  I’m just not sure what to do to manage my anxiety about it.

saying goodbye

Today was our nanny’s last day, and I am honestly just so incredibly sad over it.  I am sad because my kids are sad, especially L, who understands the implications of saying goodbye better than her little sister.  I’m also sad because, well, it’s easier having three parents than two, and whenever she’s been taking care of the kids, I’ve just known they were in good hands and well cared for.  She finished her bachelor’s degree while she was working for us, and the kids are in school all day now, so it obviously makes sense for her to move on.  But we will miss her so much.  Four years is a long time, and I have always been terrible at saying goodbye, and being an emotional basket case (blame pregnancy) doesn’t help.

I don’t know what we’ll do about childcare and work with our third daughter.  The thought of starting the whole cycle of back to work, interviewing nannies, etc., is just so utterly unappealing I’ve been just not thinking about it.

30 weeks

I am now 30 weeks along.  I had my appointment with my doctor Tuesday and feel a lot better.  I had been told by the nurse that I would have to start going twice a week – negative, thankfully.  Doctor said the baseline, once a week from 32 weeks – which I admittedly still think is excessive – is fine.  She is fine on holding off on induction until the end of the 39th week, which for me balances the low likelihood I’d get that far (haven’t gotten beyond 38+0 yet), AMA and GD risks.  In addition, she thinks that in the unlikely event they did induce me at 40 weeks, it would likely be sufficient just to break my water.  You never know, of course – I think I had a lot more BH contractions with my last pregnancy.  And apparently uterine contractions become less effective with age and also with GD.  She also suggested I not attend the GD class since I am having no trouble measuring and maintaining blood sugar levels, so that is one less thing to do.

So all continues to chug along.  Two weeks until the next placenta check.  At this point, I am so exhausted by all the various issues I feel like a planned C-section wouldn’t be the end of the world.  I feel like vaginal birth is the ideal, especially if it’s quick, and an emergency C would be a nightmare (though obviously women have them every day).  A planned C I think would be tolerable.

What amazes me is how good I feel when I’m swimming.  Swimming is an incredible hassle.  I have to drive to the gym, change into my bathing suit, and then afterwards, shower, and get back into street clothes and drive home.  It takes like 90 minutes for a 45 minute workout.  Normally, that would be time I just don’t have, but I am making time (and billing fewer hours) because I think it’s important for my health and sanity.  But.  It drives me nuts.  I also hate getting into the water, those first few seconds of feeling cold and wet.  (Doesn’t everyone?)  But after that, I feel amazingly good.  About 50% of the time, I swim a full 1800 yards.  That’s a pretty decent swim.  Granted, I swim slower than I do when not pregnant (about 2:30 / 100 yards versus 2:05 or so).  I also take longer breaks between sets – when not pregnant, I generally take 60 seconds or 90 at most, whereas these days, I take a solid two minutes.  I am mixing up the strokes more to try and help with boredom, doing some backstroke and some kick, and lots of breaststroke in addition to freestyle.  But honestly, I feel like I’d be lucky to run a quarter of a mile.  Every time I have to stand for any length of time, I feel like I’m going to pass out – I’m honestly looking around for a place to sit down after 30 seconds.  How is it, then, that I can swim a mile?  I honestly don’t get it.  But I guess I am thankful for it.  At this rate, I will go into labor in the swimming pool again.  It’s funny to me that I went swimming the day I gave birth with both my previous kids.  You’d think I loved to swim or something.  Ha!

On a side note, why aren’t people asking Trudeau to drop out of the race?  Is it because he’s Canadian?  He’s now been found in blackface 3 times, with the most recent incident less than 20 years ago.  The Virginia governor, on the other hand, may have worn blackface 35 years ago (he denies it), and there were calls all round for him to step down.  For me, there’s a statute of limitations, not sure what it is, but it’s less than 35 years.  In other news, I find Democratic hysteria over Kavanaugh extraordinarily hypocritical.  Fairfax, the Virginia Lieutenant Governor and apparent rapist, has been accused by multiple women of sexual assault:

The two women have for months requested a public hearing before the General Assembly, where they could testify under oath about their allegations. Fairfax and Democrats in the General Assembly have sought to block efforts by Republicans to hold the hearing, claiming partisan antics and arguing in favor of law enforcement investigations.

He is still happily in office and is now apparently planning to run for governor.  Note that his first accuser is a college professor.  Apparently, sexual assault is only problematic for the Democrats if you are Republican.  I also wonder whether Fairfax’s accuser would find sexual assault more or less problematic than wearing blackface 35 years ago.  I am inclined to view the former as a far worse transgression, but being white, perhaps I’m missing something.