Tuesday, July 26, 2011

26 weeks

How Far Along? 26 weeks

Maternity Clothes? Yep. Complete strangers are most definitely asking now when I am due.

Weight Gain? 24

Stretch Marks? No

Sleep? Fine. My sinus congestion is the only thing making sleep a bit disrupted at times. Had a few nights of Restless legs, but taking iron seems to help.

Best Moment of the Week? One night the kid was particularly active. DH had his hand on my stomach and felt movement 4 different times in 4 different locations very distinctively. Pretty amazing to feel it in me on the inside and he can pinpoint the exact spot on the outside.

Movement? yes, daily. But definitely ebbs and flows. some days are quieter then others.

Food Cravings? Iced tea.

Gender? will know in 14 weeks (give or take a few)

What I miss? wearing my wedding rings

Symptoms: Overall I feel pretty good. But the last week and a half I have felt just a bit yucky frequently. Hard to put a finger on what it is. Maybe heartburn, maybe sour stomach, maybe sinus yuck, maybe all or none of the above. Will talk with my midwife about it.

What I'm looking forward to? Maternity leave

Weekly Wisdom: Enjoy every minute.

Milestones: This is the last update during the 2nd trimester. Next week's update I will be in the 3rd (OMG!)

Emotions: Disbelief. Joy.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Belly pics added

I've been inconsistent with taking pics, but better late then never.

In addition to the 5 week, 7week, 9week, and 16week shots I had up, I added two pics from today (25week1day). Oops- skipped a few weeks in there.

You can click on my Belly pics page.


I've been reflecting on fear lately. In part from reading My so called TTC life post about fear which I could so relate and in part from my recent realization that I no longer fear toilet paper.

There is no doubt that is creeps in now and then. That old familiar voice, that feeling of panic. It appears, and disappears from time to time. Moments when I realize I haven't been paying attention to kicks from the kid and can't remember when I felt him/her last. A brief dream I had in which i was spotting in my dream. I don't entirely escape it.

But it on longer is my constant companion as I am now realizing used to be the case. Looking back, the fear during, well during ALL of this journey, was so strong and so ever present. If manifested it self differently during different phases- TTC naturally, starting IVF, waiting for the egg retrieval and transfer, waiting for results, and more results and more u/s. Getting used to the new twinges, and feelings, in my body when i was newly pregnant and fearing it all spelled catastrophe on the horizon.

My heart leaps up in to my throat occasionally when I fear the worst now, but it is usually momentary. overall, I am just so much more content and present in the now. And the more time I spend in that space, the more I realize how much fear I've lived for the recent chapters of my life. And how often I feared I would never escape the fear. And how grateful I am that it is retreating.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

25 weeks

How Far Along? 25 weeks

Maternity Clothes? Yep. I feel like the belly got big overnight this week.

Weight Gain? 23

Stretch Marks? No

Sleep? Really good.

Best Moment of the Week? Nothing in particular, I am just loving all of this.

Movement? yes, often. Feels like this secret conversation I get to have with the kid

Food Cravings? Still finding I am picky about what sounds good. Garlic is evil. I am loving iced tea (which I have NEVER liked before)

Gender? will know in 16 weeks (give or take a few)

What I miss? Being able to take Pseudo.phedrine for my sinuses.

Symptoms: Sinuses and allergies were really rough earlier this week, as was heartburn. Also was shocked to notice the dark veins have appeared in my ta.tas like I have heard others talk about. WOWZERS! They weren't kidding when they said "dark veins." Also think I have been having round ligament pains all week for the first time.

What I'm looking forward to? Continuing to work on our to-do list at home.

Weekly Wisdom: None

Milestones: I look unmistakeably pregnant now- people are congratulating me, rather than being shy.

Emotions: So unbelievably content.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Milestone: Toilet paper

I have stopped checking the TP for spotting when I wipe. I am not sure when I stopped, sometime in the past week or so.

I don't think I was entirely aware of how ingrained of a habit it had become, until I stopped doing it.

A well formed habit after far too many miscarriages, waiting for AF, waiting and more waiting.

I have looked at so much tp in my three years TTC.

It is freeing actually- to no longer be afraid of the toilet paper. A small sign of some bigger inner healing happening on this crazy journey.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

24 weeks

How Far Along? 24 weeks

Maternity Clothes? Yep.

Weight Gain? Too afraid to check; Lately I have been starting to feel big. (Updated: I bit the bullet and got on the scale. Gain is 22.5; I know it is a normal part of pregnancy. Scale is not my friend though.)

Stretch Marks? No

Sleep? Really good. i'm a bit amazed actually.

Best Moment of the Week? We ordered some baby announcements to send out to a few people who don't know yet and they arrived in the mail this week. Made DH and I smile.

Movement? yes, daily. feels like an alien in me, rolling over and over and over.

Food Cravings? i like fruit. bubbly drinks. peanut butter.

Gender? will know in 16 weeks (give or take a few)

What I miss? My wedding rings, I strongly dislike tight rings, so haven't been wearing them

Symptoms: Sinuses and allergies are rough, but not keeping me down. Otherwise, I feel good.

What I'm looking forward to? A bunch of hand me downs a friend will be bringing over. And looking forward to making progress on my to-do list.

Weekly Wisdom: Enjoy today.

Milestones: viability- crazy to think that a) I've reached this point and b) that babies born this young can survive

Emotions: Total scatterbrain. I can't get anything done at work. I feel like I am in a fog, running in circles. So unlike me.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Milestone: The last u/s

Today was our last u/s. We have gotten to take a peek at the kid at (if I recall correctly from memory) 6wk, 8wk, 10wk, 19wk, and 23wk. If all goes as planned, the next time we see the kid he/she will be in our arms.

At my 19wk (19wk3days) they weren't able to get a perfect pic of the heart, and the doctor suggested a follow up, given this is an IVF baby. I guess there is some data some where that makes IVF babes higher risk.

It was offered as optional. I am not entirely convinced our baby is higher risk (and I don't think the doc was either). But We took them up on the offer, cuz, heck it was another glimpse of baby. But to be honest? there was a part of me that was truly ready to be done with ultrasounds. (Believe me, I too am shocked to be saying that). This u/s was different than any of the other ones- in that I wasn't nervous, I was just content and as always a bit curious. It was far more routine and not at all a roller coaster of emotions.

U/s were my security blanket at first- I held my breath from u/s to u/s. I feared history repeating itself in that dark room, lying on a table, only to be given bad news. But as the belly grows and now that I can feel the kid moving daily, plus we hear the heartbeat at the midwives regularly, I'm glad, and very ready, to be done (hopefully) with ultrasounds. I feel like I am ready to have that chapter behind me. I am ready to just trust in the journey.

Highlights from the day-
More than ever the kid looks like an actual baby, and no longer an alien (I mean that with all motherly affection)
Ouch, Ouch, ouch. Ultrasounds can hurt- the tech was pushing and prodding so hard at times and for so long- it was over an hour long u/s (and the majority of it was not much on the screen I could discern what it was) Although we did get a couple of good pics (I'll post later)
Everything looks perfect according to the dr and our quad screening came back a few weeks ago also showing no concern for any of the genetic diseases they test for
I don't know what amazes me more- the fact that the kid went from a few cells to 1.5 pounds in only 23 weeks or the fact that in the next 17 weeks it will go from 1.5 to 8-9 pounds. Both are hard to fathom.

all in all, it is safe to say I am living in a constant state of absolute awe.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

23 Weeks

How Far Along? 23 weeks

Maternity Clothes? Yep.

Weight Gain? Not sure this week

Stretch Marks? No

Sleep? Good. No complaints.

Best Moment of the Week? Starting to prepare the kid's room, installing the bookshelf in the closet

Movement? yes, daily. And much more frequently than last week. I actually wasn't expecting that I would feel movement constantly throughout the day at this point. I love it. DH felt a poke/jab from the outside for the first time on Saturday.

Food Cravings? Still a bit picky, but all in all pretty normal; Apples and watermelons are my friends

Gender? Waiting to be surprised.

What I miss? Can't think of anything

Symptoms: Pretty uneventful. Some heartburn, but can't detect a pattern or a rhyme or reason as to when I get it and when I don't; and pollen allergies are out control. Otherwise, no aches or pains or any complaints

What I'm looking forward to? Ordered some samples from the online Blinds store- finally getting around to ordering blinds for our room and the kid's room. Also excited to make progress on other things on my growing "to-do" list.

Weekly Wisdom: Can't think of anything...

Milestones: Friends lent us their Arms Reach crib. We picked it up from them this week. As soon as we finish a few more things on our to-do list we'll be able to set it up.

Emotions: Tears of joy and sappiness flow without warning at times, blame it on hormones

Saturday, July 2, 2011

I painted the baby's room...

...three years ago.

Three years ago, I painted the room that I prayed would someday soon be for our child. I painted it just a few months after our first miscarriage. The room was (and still is) DH's office and our guest room. For months and months after that first miscarriage I begged, pushed, and pleaded with DH to let me paint that room. Work was crazy busy for him and he didn't understand why I would want to tear up his office (and make a mess of the house) in order to paint the room, in light of the fact that we were no longer pregnant so there was no longer any urgency to the task.

I finally reached the peak of my intersection of grief and desperation and ended up melting in a sobbing puddle on the floor one day. I was able to finally find the words, and he was able to hear me, that if I couldn't have our beloved baby in my arms, DAMN IT, I at least I should get the pleasure of still painting the room. I at least deserved that.

He heard me and held me in his arms. That weekend in September 2008 I painted the room. And it was just what I needed at the time.

But that painted room has also continually been a lingering place of grief- a symbol of dreams unfulfilled. Of tears shed. Of hopes, crushed.

Two years later, during a particularly hopeful time, I bought a bookshelf for that room. Looking back, I don't know why I was feeling hopeful then. We were almost three years into TTC with no end in sight. No savings in our bank in order to move on to IVF or adoption. No answers. And no viable option laid ahead of us. And yet hope was returning to my heart. When I blogged about it at the time- I wrote about how ridiculous hope seems at times.

Today DH and I started pealing back the layers of clutter that have amassed in DH's office/guest room, the room that will be our baby's very soon. The bookshelf that I bought, 9 months ago, has been stored in our garage all this time as I needed a) DH to clean the office b) move the guest bed out in order to c) rip out the current shelving in the closet so we could install this new bookshelf in there.

Once again, I don't think DH understood at first why I have been so insistent on getting this project started. Until...until the tears started falling. As he is ripping out the last of the shelving in the closet, he turned around to unexpectantly find tears quietly running down my cheeks as I stood there watching him (they are flowing again just typing this). All I could whisper in between the tears was, "We have wanted this for so long..."

I am often left speechless when I think back on this past 3 1/2 years. The path through miscarriages and TTC was the darkest time I have known in my life. And yet seemingly insignificant gestures like painting that "damn" room and buying that bookshelf seemed to keep me going. They were gestures that carried with them an outward expression of the little bit of hope I could hang on to. And that hope, even when it seemed so faint, is the only thing that kept me going.