Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Girl Mom

I've always been pretty girly. I grew up in a bright pink room, always had flowery bedding, wore lots of girly stuff, was into jewelry, makeup, etc etc. I loved baby dolls and barbies and always had them dressed up and hair done.  I've been pretty excited about all of the girl clothes. Many of my close friends have little boys, and while I always loved shopping for them, cute stuff for boys is just harder to find. The girls get all the love.

Someone asked recently if I will be doing bows and headbands. I probably looked at them like they were crazy, because of course the answer was YES! I stumbled upon a great local wholesaler who hooked me up with an insane amounts of headbands and flowers for hair clips. I'm so excited to have this amazing (and cheap) resource, pretty much right in my backyard.

I  picked up an order a couple weeks ago and got to work gluing the flowers to little clips so that I can interchange them on headbands and hats, and then one day actually put them in her hair (if she has any soon--I didn't get hair until I was over 3 years old!)

I plan on getting pro pics of our girl during her first year and beyond. I love all the beautiful headbands and sweet little diaper covers I see on all of these new babies! I ordered a diaper cover in baby girl's signature colors and can't wait to see her little butt all covered in ruffles.

I'm realizing not every mama is as into pink, ruffles and bows as I am. I have two friends who are expecting girls soon. One is pretty much anti-pink (blasphemy!) and I've recently learned that both of them aren't into bows...or ruffles. It's ok, I don't mind admitting that my baby will be decked out and at times looking obnoxiously girly. To me, it's just the joy of having a baby girl. Hopefully our girl will love being girly. And if not, I'll enjoy it while I can.

Monday, August 27, 2012

34 Weeks!

How Far Along: 34 Weeks done! Starting week 35 today and couldn't be happier to still be pregnant!

Size of Baby as Relative to Common Household Fruit or Vegetable: Baby is the size of a cantaloupe and about 18 inches long. Our ultrasound guessed baby weighs about 5lbs 9oz at 34w4 days! 

Weight Gain:  25 lbs!
Gender: Sweet little girl

Movement: Her movements have slowed down slightly. She still makes her kick counts, but I can tell she's running out of room and not stretching out as much. I can definitely feel where she is. Her butt and her back are easy to find. 

Sleep:  sleeping pretty well!

What I miss: My energy. I get worn out so easily!
Cravings: Pretzels and fruit! 

Symptoms: feeling some swelling in my hands and feet again. Back pain just comes and goes depending on how long I stay in a certain position. I'm definitely tired, but overall feeling good. I've been obnoxiously hungry for the past two weeks. A couple nights I've laid in bed with a grumbling stomach and had to get up for a midnight snack. I feel like the biggest pregnant cliche!
Best moment of the week: definitely my last appointment with the perinates. I was not sure what to expect and part of me thought they would tell me the cerclage needed to be removed early, that I was dilating etc etc. I was expecting the worst. So when everything looked really good, I was so shocked and excited. Scheduling the cerclage removal was surreal. I'd never really thought I'd get there!
Worst moment of the week: B has come down with a summer cold and I can feel myself catching it. I really hope it passes quickly as there is always a chance baby will be here soon!

My next little victory for myself is to make it to September. I'm so close, yet August feels so long with it's damn 31 days and all. But I'm feeling more and more confident that I will see September with a baby in my belly. My OB is convinced that I will go full term, but I have a feeling it wont be long after cerclage removal. At that point I'll set a weekly goal to make it to the end. But I've told myself I'll just be happy with a September baby. Less than a week to go!

Friday, August 24, 2012

34 Week Appointment

Today was my last appointment with the perinatologist. I didn't realize this was the last one until the Dr. said so. Crazy!

Baby was measured via abdominal ultrasound and everything looks right on track. She was measuring about 5 pounds, 9oz. My fluids looked good and the Dr. could see the baby "practice breathing" on the screen which was pretty cute.

Although he had said there would be no cervical check, he decided to do one anyway. He said he couldn't get a good enough look abdominally. He measured and my cervix was nice and long with no visible funneling. I was surprised. I was prepared for him to tell me I was dilating a little.

He said I could return to work (I didn't admit that I'd been working once a week despite his instructions). He scheduled me for my cerclage removal on 9/6 and wished me well. It was so strange. I'm pretty sure he said something to the effect of, I'm done with you! It sounded much less harsh in his little French accent.
He said my regular OB would probably remove the stitch and my regular OB would deliver. I do love my OB, but I have so much trust in these specialists and really wish they could just see me through and deliver my baby. I've seen them so much more often, but I know I'm in good hands either way.

I'm definitely feeling more pregnant as of late and get worn out pretty easily. The summer heat certainly doesn't help. I did manage to install the car seat this morning before it got too hot. Car seats are kind of cumbersome, but I managed. It is pretty surreal to see a seat back there. I installed it in our SUV, which I don't currently drive every day, but it will be baby's primary mode of transport. I got an extra base for one of our other cars, we'll have to see how that all plays out. I also threw the Maclaren snap and go stroller in the back.

I'm working on our hospital bags, too. It feels like I don't have a ton of time left.

The nursery is still in a state of disarray,  I just need to figure out where I want everything. Part of me can't believe I'm still pregnant and part of me can't believe she could be here so soon. Feels amazing!

Monday, August 20, 2012

33 Weeks!

How Far Along: 33 Weeks in the books-elated to be turning 34 today! Can hardly believe it!

Size of Baby as Relative to Common Household Fruit or Vegetable: Baby is the size of a pineapple-over 4lbs and more than 17 inches long. 

Weight Gain:  Back to 25lbs this week

Gender: Sweet little girl

Movement: Pretty steady movement this week. Saturday she moved all day long and I really hope she didn't flip. She's been head down for a few weeks but it felt like she was doing some acrobatics in there on Saturday. B FINALLY felt her move from the outside. I can also see her movement from the outside a lot more. It's pretty crazy

Sleep:  much better this week. I got a ton of sleep! BUT I am sooo tired. Like first trimester tired. I took two naps this week which is so out of character for me. 

What I miss: My mobility! Wine!
Cravings: Sweeeets! I've been trying not to keep anything too bad in the house because I am ravenous at night. 

Symptoms: the back pain comes and goes. I hobble sometimes when it's really bad, but it usually goes away once I stretch it out. I've had noticeable braxton hicks since last week, but nothing too bad or concerning. The hormones are for sure kicking in. I get teary eyed at the drop of a hat for no reason! It's quite comical. 
Best moment of the week: sadly, nothing is coming to mind. The week went by fast which was nice! B and I enjoyed a Saturday brunch together and ended up finding the perfect piece of furniture for our bedroom. We've been on the search for so long, we couldn't believe we found it. 
Worst moment of the week: Nothing is standing out. I'm getting a little stir crazy in the house which stinks. I know I should be enjoying this quiet time!

 I did not have an appointment with my specialist this week, just the non-stress tests and a visit to my regular OB. Both appointments went well. 

Monday, August 13, 2012

32 Weeks!

How Far Along: 32 Weeks Complete!! Very, very happy to be turning 33 today!

Size of Baby as Relative to Common Household Fruit or Vegetable: looks like I've got my baby measurements mixed up and this is this weeks prediction-  Baby is as heavy as a jicama and probably weighs about 3 3/4 lbs....I know our baby is well over this weight by now....

Weight Gain:  The Drs scale was down to 23 lbs this week. I will take it :) 

Gender: Sweet little girl

Movement: So much movement this week-all day long. Then Friday through Sunday the movements lessened. I was a little concerned, but still met my kick count requirements and felt her if I laid still. 

Sleep:  very rough! Having a really hard time falling asleep. Saturday night I was up all night.

What I miss: Work! I am a much happier person when I am working.
Cravings: can't get enough fruit!

Symptoms: back pain. I feel like an old lady!
Best moment of the week: making it to Bremy's birthday was a big goal of mine. Here is is and I'm still pregnant. It's a nice way to "celebrate" a difficult day. 
Worst moment of the week: I worked for a few hours on Wednesday and it was really hot. I ended up doing more than I had planned and knew it was too much for me. That night I was up all evening with braxton hicks. When I finally went to bed, they were pretty consistent-coming every ten minutes on the dot. After I had 6 in an hour, I called labor and delivery and luckily by the time I got on the phone they had stopped. He said it's considered normal at this point in pregnancy and is definitely a direct correlation to the busy day I'd had. It was a reality check as Drs have told me to not work at all. 

We have non-stress testing twice this week and a visit to my perinatologist on Friday afternoon. I'm anxious to see where we are at. He will no longer do cervical length checks so I'm curious to see how this appointment goes.  Very grateful to be this far along with our little girl!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Dear Bremy Belle,

Your birthday is tomorrow. It feels strange to call it a birthday, but sounds better than the anniversary of your death. Which is what it is. I've had to be at the hospital for testing on your sister this past week. To get to the room, I have to walk by the room where you were born. I'd never ever seen that room from the outside before. I just remember the number. The door has been closed both times, and I wonder how the mom is doing in there? I lived in that room for about a week, and then delivered you there. I wasn't meant to deliver you there, but on the day you were born, the hospital set some sort of record for babies born and they were out of rooms. So they just let me deliver there. And that's where I held  you, where you were baptized, and where I said goodbye to you. It's where all of my worst nightmares now take place.

In some ways this has been the longest year of my life, and in some ways it's flown by. I keep referring to it as a "lost year." Even though we really have done a lot since you left us, I've mostly felt paralyzed with grief and fear. We lost you in August, lost your great-grams in October and then were pregnant with your sister at the end of January. A busy six months for sure, especially when you add in the house we bought in December and moved in to in February. Still, it feels like I haven't really lived much in this past year. Like I've just been anxiously anticipating each day. So worried over this pregnancy, shocked with the news of twins, saddened with the loss of one of them, and then just praying each week that things would be ok with this pregnancy.

And while it hasn't been easy, it's been worth it. It's been worth the worry and the struggles. And I know the eventual pay off will make this past year seem like a distant memory. At least I hope so.

I've changed dramatically in this past year. I care a lot more about being with your daddy and might even use him as a security blanket now, where I never felt that way before. I'm less concerned with material things and less concerned with others in general. I've prioritized my friendships, but still feel distant from a lot of people I once felt close to. I've noticed I don't take many pictures anymore. I used to take so many. I know I'm more compassionate and maybe even more patient towards others.  I know most of these things will make me a better mom to your sister than I ever could have been before experiencing the pain of your loss. I'm hoping some of the negative things will change, once I am a day to day mom and feel like I can breathe again.  I was overjoyed to be your mom, but now it's been taken to a whole new level of anticipation and love.

I looked at your pictures today. So far, I am the only one who has ever seen them. They are hard to see. Very hard. And I am overcome with tears as I write to you and picture your little tiny face and hands. So perfect and so small.

Thinking of you is still so, so hard for us. I try to think of you less, to try to ease the pain, but it's impossible. You are in my thoughts every day. Every day since the day I knew you existed. You will never leave my mind.

This weekend we attended a mass held in your honor at your Great-Grandmom's church. Hearing your name announced on a microphone was very jarring. Even though I knew it was coming, my whole body shook. I don't think I've ever heard someone say your first and last name before. I've certainly never heard it announced. And while I was holding back tears, the recognition of your existence was very, very validating. It was nice to meet the members of the church as many of them have prayed for you and continue to pray for me. Your dad and I both felt you with us and we are really glad we were able to attend.

Tomorrow will be a hard day for sure, I want to do something to recognize the day, but I'm not sure what, exactly. Know you are always on my mind and a piece of my heart will forever be missing.

I love you,


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Baby's First Story

I've never paid much attention to the theory that you should play Mozart for your baby while she's still in your belly. I try to talk to baby as much as I can, but I'm sure she hears me all day long and will know my voice. But something of this sort recently caught my eye.

This book, Oh, Baby the Places You'll Go! A Book to be Read in Utero is an adaptation from the works of Dr. Seuss and is meant to be read to the baby in your belly. It's a fun little book with mentions of several of Dr. Seuss' famous story characters.  The theory is you read the rhythmic prose now and also read it once the baby is born. The sound of your voice and the familiar beat of the story will be familiar and hopefully calming to your baby.

Who knows if that's true, but regardless it's a fun book and is easy to read right to your belly. I usually read it in the morning time, once I feel that baby girl is awake. It's been fun since the book highlights your baby right in it's words. It would make a perfect little gift.

Monday, August 6, 2012

32 Week Appointment and NST Testing

Today I had my appointment at the perinates and also had my first antepartum, non stress test done at the hospital.

I saw Dr. V again. Cervix was measuring slightly better than last week, at about 1.75. I think his measurements were 1.73, 1.76 and 2.13. Still funneled which is a bummer, but I really just hoped things would not look any worse, so I'm happy.

He said this would be my last cervical length check. I asked him why and he really had no explanation, just that "well you are 32 weeks". I asked a couple different ways, but didn't really get a good response. He just kinda said at this point there's nothing else they can do. But my concern is my cerclage damaging my cervix or having an emergency situation. I thought we'd keep an eye on it until the cerclage came out, but he just shook his head. So I go back in two weeks just to measure the baby and fluids etc. I still don't get it, but I will research it and see what I can find.

My amniotic fluid looked normal today. It was measuring at 17 so that was good. I was a little worried as to why it would go down, but they said it's just evening out as they hoped it would. I don't know much about this issue so I'm taking their word for it.

As for my NST test, it was a good experience. The hospital was really crowded and I was informed upon arrival that several babies had just made their entrance and they were busy. I finally made my way to the antepartum testing area and was greeted by a nice older nurse who took good care of me. She was a hoot and was very enthusiastic about our baby girl. A heart rate monitor and a contraction monitor were strapped on my belly and we heard baby's heartbeat right away. I told her I'd had trouble feeling baby because of my anterior placenta. She explained how the test would work and got started.

We passed the test within the first 10 minutes of being strapped up to the monitors, but she said I had to be there a minimum of 20 minutes. So we chatted and she asked about our loss and was quite friendly. She asked if we had a name picked out and I explained that we weren't sharing. She said he son had done the same thing. As I was leaving she said we had a really healthy girl and she knew this baby was going to make it. She handed me some paperwork and said, "this baby is kick ass. That'st what I think you should name her." for an older gal she had some spunk. I told her I agreed, our baby is pretty kick ass!

31 Weeks

How Far Along: 31 Weeks Complete!! Very, very happy to be turning 32 today!

Size of Baby as Relative to Common Household Fruit or Vegetable: Baby is as heavy as a jicama and probably weighs about 3 3/4 lbs....well looks like our girl is tipping the scales. They estimated she was 4lbs last week...

Weight Gain:  The Drs scale was down to 23 lbs this week. I will take it :) 

Gender: Sweet little girl

Movement: Pretty consistent movements. Still gently little jabs to let me know she's in there. Her quarters are definitely getting tighter as her movements aren't as big. 

Sleep:  about the same. Sleep well once I'm asleep and comfy. My hips are usually sore when I wake up from all that side sleeping. 

What I miss: Sorry to beat a dead horse, and this is making me realize I might have a problem but I miss shopping and errands like nothing else!
Cravings: eating lots of nectarines, cherries and plums from local fruit stands. We even have one a couple blocks from our house now, too bad this mama is not allowed to walk there this year!

Symptoms: feeling large this week and I think I'm officially waddling. Achy hips and still some back pain here and there but overall not bad!
Best moment of the week: our glider and dresser arrived this week. The nursery is slowly coming together piece by piece. I finally picked out a fabric from our "new sew" crib skirt and got lots of baby laundry done. It's the best laundry there is!
Worst moment of the week: nothing notable this week, it was a good week. Still stressed about not working, but dr. appt is today and I'm hoping things are looking good enough for a couple days of work. 

I have to admit that reaching 29 weeks really took a load off my mind. At that point, even if she came, she would most likely live and we would have a child. Each week makes me feel even more confident. Unfortunately some news this morning just reminds me that there are not guarantees. A couple I graduated high school with announced today that they lost their daughter last month, at 33 weeks. There was no information given, but the comments make it sounded like she was still born. The news stopped me in my tracks and I am so devastated for them. This was their first and I know how excited they were for the baby. I am still just so sad, and can't help but think, "how could this happen?". I've been feeling like we are out of the woods, but there is no such thing. So this morning, as I celebrate starting my 32nd week, it's with a heavy and all too knowing heart. 

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Our Niners baby

When the SF Giants won the World Series in 2010, my husband cried. I've never, ever met a bigger fan than my husband.

B is just as passionate about his beloved Forty Niners. I have always loved, loved sports and get very very into games. Shouting, jumping, screaming-I'm that girl. I'm pretty sure I embarassed myself yearly at my little brother's little league games. We'll call it competitivly passionate. Since I'm not the best athlete, I really enjoy rooting others on. So this was definitely a trait that brought B and I closer while we were dating. Slowly, this Southern California girl became a fan of his bay area teams and am right there with him, cheering them on.

This past January, our beloved Forty Niners made it to the NFL divisional playoffs. We've watched the Niners struggle since we've been together, so this was a big, big deal.  B and I wanted to go to the home game against the Saints SO bad. Two nights before the game, I threw caution to the wind and bought some tickets. In my mind, I knew it would be close to a once in a lifetime event. We still kick ourselves for missing the Giants' playoff games during their World Series. We were pumped because we landed some really great seats. High enough to see the whole field, close enough to actually see.

This was our view. The most exciting plays of the game took place in this end zone. We loved our seats!

We tailgated with several close friends who are just as passionate. I'll admit, leaving at 7 am to get to Candlestick by 830 was a little rough, but we wanted to make the most of our day.
Enjoying a little pregame mimosa with S...sorry baby, I did not think you were in there!

The 49ers beat the Saints in an epic game. It was far and away the best live sporting event I had ever been to in my life. Our seats were awesome and we had some great fans surrounding us throughout the game. I most definitely got into it and could not believe I had a voice left afterwards. The fans were on it that day, I've never experienced anything like it. I think it might have been one of the best things I've ever been a part of. Seriously. 

When they won, it was complete chaos and celebration and I'm going to admit that I literally peed my pants. Yes. You read that right. It was so close, and so action packed that when Vernon Davis caught for a touchdown in the final drive of the game,  I lept out of my seat, used B's and the stranger next to me's shoulder to catapult myself into the air. While doing so, pee came out. Yep. Not a lot, but enough to be like-ummm, was that pee? That's how out of control excited I was. Watching youtube clips of it still gives me chills. It was just great football. The game had been going back and forth and to win like that was just too good. Unfortunately, the 49ers would lose the next playoff game to the NY Giants. We were not at that game. And I'm glad. We watched it mournfully from our couch.

So why am I writing this post now, in the middle of baseball season? Well, a little known fact is that our sweet baby girl is a 49ers divisional champ baby. You see, when the Giants won the World Series in 2010, they had a little promo going for the baby born exactly 9 months after the win. The baby born closest to that time would be pronounced the "Giants Baby".  It's been a cute promo. While, technically babies aren't born exactly 9 months after mating----no one seemed to care.

The promo made me realize that our daughter was conceived the week leading up to the 49ers game, and since it takes a bit for conception to actually occur- it's very possible the point of conception was during that game. Kinda fun for us to think about, even though some might find it over-sharing.. Obviously baby girl wasn't made at the game (not sure how that would have worked) but the times line up as I found out I was pregnant two weeks later.

Still not sure when little miss will be born, but we've given her the self imposed title of our little "Niner Baby". We are ready for football season!