Friday, April 03, 2009

35 days to go

I think I wrote something about posting soon/more often? Right.

I just can't imagine that anything I might write here would be of very much interest to anyone but me. I'm still feeling surprisingly well, so far exempt from most pregnancy complaints. The one that won't let up is the exhaustion. I never did get that second trimester burst of energy, and now the fatigue is as strong as it was in the beginning.

I love watching my stomach move of its own accord, and trying to figure out what my daughter is doing in there. As of our appointment last week, she is breech. I am hoping, hoping, hoping that she will turn. Unfortunately, I have a low placenta (not previa, though, thank goodness) and I have read that a low placenta can take up so much room in the lower uterus that a breech position becomes roomier than head down. I am terrified of a c-section, so we will be trying everything we can to get her to turn. Including hanging upside down, playing music to my pelvis, and shining a bright flashlight up the preferred exit route.

We are mostly prepared, in terms of acquiring all the requisite baby stuff. There is a car seat in the back seat of my car. I still need to have the installation checked. And decide on a pediatrician. Oh, and the childcare situation is still up in the air, which sometimes keeps me awake for hours in the middle of the night, and sometimes makes me cry. But the nursery is ready, and beautiful. She has a closet full of adorably tiny clothes. I sit in the rocker in the room that will be her room, and I feel so happy. I can't believe how close we are to finally, finally holding the baby we dreamed of for so many years.

Here are a couple of gooey anecdotes, so look away now if you are not in the mood.

I mentioned to Jack that sometimes it tickles when Iggy moves, and he said, "Oh, I guess that's why you laugh." Unbeknownst to me, I laugh in my sleep these days. I have never in my life laughed in my sleep, and now I do it regularly, tickled on the inside by our child.

Jack is going to be such a good father. I love to watch him rub and kiss my stomach, and talk to Iggy. I can tell that he loves her already, that we are already a family of three.

Five weeks to go.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

27 weeks

Only ninety days to go... I can't believe it! In the beginning I never really imagined I would get this far. Now Iggy is kicking, punching, and hiccuping away, making her* presence known so often that even I have come to accept that there really is a baby in there.

As I enter the last week of the second trimester I would have to say that so far this has been a very easy pregnancy physically. In fact, I have been so free of physical symptoms and complaints that for a long while it was hard (even harder) to really believe this longed-for but unexpected pregnancy was true.

Medically it has been fairly uneventful as well. One early, small bleed that frightened me to death but posed no danger to Iggy and has not recurred. An ultrasound that showed a low-lying placenta, but it's not previa and my doctor is not concerned.

Emotionally, however, I have been all over the map. I thought all my worries would be about Iggy's very survival, but at some point I became remarkably calm about that. I still don't take it for granted, but I don't think I worry about it any more than I worry about Jack being killed in a car accident (which is to say that I know it is possible, and occasionally it crosses my mind, but I don't dwell on it).

What I am worrying myself sick over is money, childcare, and how we will all survive my unpaid leave without starving to death. (I exaggerate... a little.) I don't think I need to say anything about the economy, but it has definitely impacted Jack's income (in addition to his salary he makes commissions and sales-based bonuses which have virtually dried up). It has also hurt both of our parents, probably worse than it has hurt us, actually, so that while a year or two ago they would most likely have helped out a great deal with some of the initial expenses related to bringing a baby into the world, now they simply are not able. We will make it through my leave on our savings, but after that we will have no safety net, no reserve. It makes me nervous. And when I return to work I will make less money, both because I will be working slightly reduced hours for awhile and because the money for childcare will come out of my income. I should be (and am) grateful that we both still have jobs, but I hate feeling stretched. We have been doing everything we can to hold down expenses and try to build our savings up that little bit more each month, but it is difficult and I have trouble seeing how we will manage to survive on even less when we have added a third person to the family.

And childcare... I don't think I even want to delve into that at the moment. Suffice it to say that I have found an arrangement I am reasonably happy with (as happy as I can be with the thought of leaving her in the care of anyone other than Jack or myself) but they will not accept her until she is six months old. My leave is twelve weeks, so assuming I manage to work up until the day I go into labor she will only be three months old when it ends. What we will do for those next three months is still completely up in the air and I am quickly reaching the point where I can't think about it without panicking.

There's more (and happier things) to share, but Jack is walking in the door. I will try to post again soon.

* I never came by here to share the news . . . Iggy is a little girl! We could not be more thrilled. Jack wants everything to be pink (which quite frankly surprises me) and I found myself reining him in a bit in regards to over the top girly-frilly things that he wanted to put on the registry. I would have thought it would be the other way around.

Friday, November 28, 2008

eek! there is baby stuff in my house!

A belated happy Thanksgiving to those of you who celebrated yesterday. I have never had more to be thankful for than I do this year: finally, finally pregnant and able to share the news in person with our far-flung extended family, all gathered together for one day of eating, and laughing, and catching-up, and eating, and gossiping, and gratitude, and taking long walks together so that we could eat some more.

After dinner, my brother surprised me with an incredible gift of baby clothes and sundries, passed along to me from his sister-in-law who had a baby last year. Now that we are home again, I have placed the boxes in the room-that-will-be-a-nursery-one-day, where I have unpacked, examined, and repacked everything twice. So much baby stuff in my house makes this feel even more real than sharing the news with my grandparents yesterday did.

God willing, fingers crossed, and etc., etc., I think we are going to have a baby next spring!

Friday, November 14, 2008

so sick of my job

I haven't talked about my job in a long time.

Right now, I hate it.

Once upon a time, I loved it. But for the last year or so, I've known that I have outgrown it. I have learned everything I can learn here, and there is no path for advancement unless my immediate boss decides to retire, in which case I'm pretty sure I could have her job. But she shows no signs of retiring any time soon.

It's not all bad. I love the people I work with (well, for the most part!). And my responsibilities are varied enough that I am very rarely bored.

The real problem is that the lack of paid maternity leave makes me feel trapped. I try to schedule all my doctor appointments ridiculously early in the morning so that I can get to work on time. It doesn't matter how exhausted I am, I can't take an afternoon off. It doesn't matter how much I would like to have an extra day to spend with my family this Thanksgiving, I can't take a vacation day. Because I know how much I will need that little bit of paid time off in May. I get 12 weeks of leave, but the only bits that will be paid are the bits of sick time and vacation time I have managed to save. If I hadn't used any of it, that would be four weeks of paid leave. But I've already had to use four days. Ugh. And my new contract year (based on date of hire) won't reset until after I should be back from my maternity leave. So instead of scheduling a vacation day here and there, or taking a half-day of sick leave for a doctor's visit and a nap, I show up at work all day every day and feel resentful and trapped. It is not good.


Speaking of doctor's visits, and really this should have been the headline, I had an appointment yesterday and we heard Iggy's heartbeat loud and strong! Next appointment is December 11, and that will be the big anatomy scan as well. I don't know how I will be able to wait four weeks! I am so grateful and amazed to have made it this far. And I think I will have to buy some maternity pants soon. Before getting in the shower today I was startled to see my reflection in the mirror sporting a linea nigra already. But upon closer inspection, it was a linea zipper. Time to put those pants away.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

14 weeks

Fourteen weeks today. Technically, I think we are out of the first trimester by now. Or maybe it's the end of this week? I can't seem to find a definitive answer to this question. But,the common wisdom seems to be that we are sailing out of the dangerous waters. Anything could still happen; unfortunately I am all too aware of that. But I think we have reached a point at which it verges on the ridiculous to not plan for a future that includes a baby. I don't mean buying out Babies r us, I mean trying to figure out how much to put aside in our 2009 flexible health spending account to cover a hospital stay for delivery, and planning for a maternity leave that will be mostly unpaid (except for whatever is left of my vacation and sick time, but that won't be much), and signing up for a prepared childbirth class. Things like that. I'm starting to feel negligent for not addressing them.

But I still fear that making plans is inviting fate to screw with those plans. Although these past 13 weeks have been largely uneventful, there have been those things that still make me nervous when I think of them. Like my progesterone level, which has been lower since I stopped the supplements. In the 18-21 range. My ob insists this is within the range of normal and nothing to worry about, but I worry. Stopping the metformin also makes me nervous. Although my blood sugar was normal when tested, so maybe that's just me looking for things to be nervous about. I also worry that Iggy doesn't move much during our ultrasounds. I had one at my last ob visit, just because my doctor knew I was worried and would feel better if I could take a look inside. There was absolutely nothing unusual that concerned the ultrasound tech, but Iggy only hiccuped twice, there was no dancing or waving, and the tech did a lot of probing to try to make Iggy move. I know logically that none of these things are big concerns to anyone else, but... I just worry.

I also can't seem to figure out how to tell people that I am pregnant. We have told our immediate families, our closest friends, the entire internet, and my boss, but we have sworn all these people to secrecy. The plan is to tell our extended family in person at Thanksgiving, and I am unbelievably excited about that. But I have no idea how to tell the people I work with. Or the administrative people above my immediate boss. I don't know why I am at such a loss. I just can't figure out what to say, or if certain people should be told in a certain order, politically, and what that order should be. Maybe I will just wait until I am so obviously huge that people start asking and then I will say, "Oh, yes, I am pregnant. Didn't I tell you?".

As far as symptoms and signs, I still don't have much. I was never sick, just hungry all the time which has either abated or just seems normal now. I have gained 5 pounds, and have trouble buttoning most of my pants, but the only place that actually looks larger to me is my breasts, which are a bit fuller but not incredibly obviously so. My main symptom has been exhaustion. It actually lifted for a couple of weeks, but it's back with a vengeance this week which I hope means that the placenta has really started cranking out the progesterone. We'll see at my next doctor visit.