Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Now THAT'S Swell!

And you thought that last picture was bad! Check out my fluid rolls...

I saw Cathy (my midwife) today, and her best guess is that Bo will arrive sometime at the tail end of next week. That sounds like forever, but I'm actually okay with waiting, and everyone will be back from LA by then, so it would be good timing. Of course, tonight would be okay too... :)

Labor Verses

So, other than laying around by the pool trying to become the tannest pregnant person ever, I have been reading through some verses I compiled for labor. I wanted to put up some of the verses, which are actually kind of comforting to me even now, BEFORE all the pain and suffering part begins. :)

Psalms 73:26- My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the rock of my heart and my portion forever.

Isaiah 41:13- "For I, the LORD your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, 'Fear not, I am the one who helps you.' "

Matthew 11:28- "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."

John 14:27- "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid."

2 Corinthians 1:5- For as we share abundantly in Christ's sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.

It was kind of amazing just how comforting these were to me when I couldn't sleep at 6am, just knowing that the presence of God is with me, along with His comfort and peace. Nowhere does He promise we won't have suffering (at least in THIS life) but He promises rest, comfort, and the building of character through it. Again I am reminded that suffering has a spiritual and eternal purpose in my life.

Now if I can just think of that during the pain of labor...

Monday, April 28, 2008

No, I Haven't Had the Baby Yet.

And it's weird because I feel great! I think that I should have gone to the chirpractor earlier, because a lot of the discomfort I had went away when she adjusted my pelvis. Who knew? So now I'm worried that I'll never have this kid since I don't feel bad anymore--just large and with very swollen feet. I also now have a double chin, which I really hate.

Here was my Dad's encouraging news to me about how I feel: "You must be about to have the baby. Because when people are dying, right before they die, they start feeling really, really good, just before it happens. So, you'll probably have the baby really soon." I was amused, comforted, and frightened by the logic in this...

Saturday, April 26, 2008

My Feet...Oh, My Feet

I have obese old lady feet.

My parents are here visiting and if you want to see pictures, such as our dramatic hawk rescue, check our photo blog!

Clothe Thyself!

At this point, I have about three shirts and two pairs of pants that still fit. I refuse to buy anything else, so I'm at the mercy of doing laundry every other day and having great friends pass on castoffs (thanks Kelly!!). I just found a site I wish I'd known about earlier on. It's called Belly Bundles and it's an online consignment boutique.

They carry everything from expensive $100+ brands to $5 tees. There's a great selection, as long as you know your size well enough to buy without trying on. I feel more comfortable putting something on, as certain things will surprise me, but this would be a great place to stock up on some basics--especially since some of the prices are cheap enough to risk the fit.

Also, my VA friends--they have locations for drop off if you want to consign clothing in Richmond and Charlottesville!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Midwife Visit, 39ish Weeks

Well, I'm not having the baby today. Probably. Everything looks great (except my swollen feet), but nothing indicates that I'll be having this baby before May 1, my latest due date. Sigh.

It's not really that bad and I'm not that miserable, but I'm uncomfortable, and it gets old when everywhere you go, people are like, "You haven't had that baby yet?" I mean--obviously not.

I want the baby to come when it's the right time for the baby, but the thought of it being even a few more weeks...oh. my. gosh. I'm learning about patience, I guess?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Why Am I Awake?

Especially since Rob's getting up in four hours. Which means the dog gets up, which means I get up. I wish that I had an oatmeal container like the hedgehog so I could rustle to the back and hiss at anyone trying to disturb me.

Right now I have swollen feet and would DIE for a crabcake. On the plus side, I have finished uploading my CDs so that now they can all go into storage, wherever THAT is. I think our attic is full. Maybe I'll dig a basement...

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

My Productivity Increases in Proportion to My Belly

Here's what I've done this week:

-vaccuumed EVERYTHING
-baked homemade cupcakes
-uploaded 50 CDs to my ipod
-painted a stool for baby O
-finished painting a mirror and shelf for baby O
-cleaned Ollie's cage
-scrubbed the kitchen floor on hands and knees
-scrubbed all the baseboards and cabinets
-scrubbed all the counters
-cleaned my bathroom
-baked one pan of lasagna and two pans of baked spaghetti
-washed four loads of laundry
-babysat my nephew

Did I mention it's TUESDAY?? Rob says I should be pregnant all the time. I won't tell you what my response to that was... :)

Sunday, April 20, 2008

It's Getting Real...

So, as you can see from my counter, we're really reaching the END. I can't believe it. I'm so ready and so not all at the same time. I've been reading birth stories on my midwife's blog from some of her clients, and it's been really good preparation for things to expect. Every labor is different and there are so many different situations that I had never even considered, so it's been helpful in getting my mind to a place that's ready for whatever comes my way.

Anyway, if you're interested to check out some of the stories, you can look here to read them. Be aware that some are gritty and a few have pictures of labor and delivery.

Birth is really an awesome feat of nature! And a crazy but amazing plan of God. Recently I read a book where the author noted that in Genesis when God says that Eve will bring forth children in pain, the Hebrew word for "pain" used is the same word used for "labor" when God says Adam will bring forth crops with toil. Yes, there is pain in childbirth. But looking at it literally as my labor...that's kind of a neat take on the experience!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

No Way....

So, they have books for kids now explaining plastic surgery? It covers everything from lipo to implants. Wow. We've come a long way from the books I read when I was a kid.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Still Craving....

HAMBURGERS! And...lima beans? I don't know where that came from, but I saw them tonight and had to buy them. They always remind me of my Grandma Nanny, and I'm pretty sure I haven't eaten them since I was like ten. They were fantastic! And Rob-made burgers beat the pants off anything from a restaurant. Hands down. Check these babies out! Rob looks pretty good too. :)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

How I Look and Feel Right Now...

No caption needed.

Dreams, Cravings, and Midwife Visits

I'm inspired by my friend Sarah's pregnancy blog to write about my cravings and dreams. I haven't had many cravings, other than just general longings for all pasta all the time, but yesterday, all of the sudden, I HAD to have a hamburger. Which is funny, because I always say that I eat like one hamburger a year. I got a great, big, juicy one from Sweet Mesquite and brought it home to top it with avocados and cheese. It was HEAVENLY. Today I want pizza.

As far as dreaming, last night I had another birth dream. This time, we went to the hospital for some reason, though we were planning to go home later, and hadn't called Cathy to tell her I was in labor. The funny part was that outside my room was a grocery store, and I kept walking the aisles while in labor. And I saw my friend Memphis there! The not so funny part was that the nurses started sneaking in all this equipment I didn't want, like the hook thing they use to break your water and stuff. My Mom was like, "You need to get out of here!" and then I was wondering why I was in the hospital at all, and was scared I couldn't get out before they started "doing things" to me. So, it's pretty obvious that I'm really wanting a home birth, huh?

I had my midwife visit yesterday, and not much is new, other than the fact that Cathy said that I have an enormous amount of fluid in my belly, which may explain why my belly seems so huge when she says it will probably be a smaller (7-8ish pound) baby. She said, "Get ready for a flood." Ew.

Needless to say, we put waterproof pads on my side of the bed last night. :)

Monday, April 14, 2008

Countdowns, Due Dates, Etc

So, is anyone else freaked out that my little counter thing says 11 days left??? ELEVEN. That makes my mouth dry up. Seriously. It's scary. And wonderful.

But here's the thing I should clear up, as everyone's asking when Bo is due for his/her arrival: I don't have one secure due date. I have two. I was discussing this with Cathy, and we found that the earliest date, April 25 (the one I use on the counter up top), is based on my LMP (last known menstrual cycle) and the latest date, May 1, is based on when I conceived. At least, that's what she had in her notes. But I don't know where that date came from exactly, because I really don't know when I conceived. It could have been any number of days, honestly. So there goes that date. The ultrasound tech said April 28, which is right between those, and sounds pretty good to me--at least better than May 1.

All dates aside, Cathy said to expect to be late so I won't be disappointed if I don't deliver soon. (Too late for that--I'm on pins and needles right now.) The latest I can go before needing to be induced is May 14, based on our latest date guess. Let me be honest--I will go BANANAS if I'm still pregnant in one month. I mean, INSANE. So, let's all hope Bo will come soon.

I already can't sleep, because every time I wake up (usually to pee), I wonder, could I be in labor now? Was that sensation I just felt a contraction? Was it stronger than the ones I've been having? Could I be dilating? I'm not going to sleep for a month if I'm still waiting for Baby O because I am not good at waiting. Not that I feel ready at all to be a Mom, but just knowing it could be NOW or in a month makes me all fidgety and crazy.

I hate waiting for things! I hate walking around knowing that any second I *could* go into labor. Or not. Sigh. Maybe I should go read Bible verses on patience and waiting on the Lord...

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Insane Product Alert!

I found this on Tricia's Reston Mom blog and was astounded enough to do more reading. Apparently, Japan is marketing a new jelly drink called Placenta 10000. And yes, it's called that because it contains 10,000 mg of pig placenta in it. But don't worry--it tastes like peach! And it only costs $8 a pop...

I did some further reading (because, seriously--a placenta drink? Why??) and found that placenta is often used in cosmetics and beauty products (though I'm not sure in the US) because of its regenerative properties, especially regarding beauty. However, a few studies seemed to link the extracts to extreme hormone infusion, which could cause things like the development of breasts in toddlers. Ew!

If you don't want to buy the peach-flavored jelly drink, but want to add placenta in your life, apparently you can also buy placenta extract (pictured above left). Also, in googling placenta, I found that a 1983 issue of Mothering magazine contained recipes for placenta cocktail, placenta lasagna, and placenta pizza.

Probably more than you EVER wanted to know on a Sunday afternoon.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

The Nursery's Ready, But Am I?

Here are some photos of the just-about-finished nursery! Mom and I did some painting and she washed about every baby outfit, blanket, and pad in the room. What's funny is that Bo probably will be staying in our room at least for a few months as we're adjusting. But it does feel good to have the room about done. It got me thinking about preparedness.

Today on, there was a quiz, "Are You Prepared to Have Your Baby?" According to the quiz, I am. Of course, there were only four questions. FOUR. None of them really having that much to do with being prepared, but more a vocab quiz of terms dealing with newborns. It kind of ticked me off. Because I know what colostrum means does NOT mean that I'm ready to have a baby. In the same vein, having the nursery done does not mean I'm prepared.

I talked with Jenna about this over email, and there's really no way to be READY. And yet, she assured me I would be. Who is ever ready to go through labor? Or to be a parent? Probably not. But at the same time, if you waited until you felt somehow perfectly prepared, you'd probably never have kids.

As the clock winds down, I alternately am freaking out and freaking excited. You'd think after nine months of knowing a baby was coming, somehow I'd feel totally ready. Definitely not.

But hey, at least the nursery looks nice... :)

Mom and I in the finished room!

What Feet Do When You're Nine Months Prego

Swell up like sausages.

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Drano Test, Part II: Science Experiments Can Be BAD

So, you may have read about the Drano test someone told us about--you pour Drano crystals in your pee, and it will turn green if you're having a boy and brown if you're having a girl. Still sounds crazy, but Rob wanted to re-do our test, which we did months ago. (And no, we're still not sharing the results.)

Here's what happened.

At first, the same thing that happened before--it changed the same color as before. But then...something started to happen. There was bubbling and foaming and it looked like a volcano starting to explode. Then there was a smell, and when I tried to pick up the glass, it was HOT. I freaked out and made Rob come deal with it, because I'm a pansy sometimes. I was really scared our house was going to blow up or something, and a Drano-pee bomb would make a real mess in my bathroom.

What was funny about the whole thing is that afterwards, Rob said that the color HE saw was NOT the color that I saw. And the crazy foam stuff was a different color. I don't know what that means. Rob's thoughts-- "I guess we both saw what we wanted to see." :)

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Me, at Like One Million Weeks

How much bigger can I get? Seriously. Let's compare with this other picture in the same shirt...And I thought THAT was a bump!!

Monday, April 7, 2008

I Almost Forgot...

My favorite shower picture. :)

Home Visit with The Midwife!

Oh, my gosh, I'm going to have a baby. I mean, I know that and I've known that, but somehow having the home visit made it very real!! The home visit is when at or around 36 weeks, my midwife Cathy comes with her team and checks your house and goes over the birth plan and details. Everyone that will be present at the birth should be there, though sadly Krista (my SIL) couldn't make it from Beaumont and Lynn (my MIL) is still very sick. Denise, my mom, and Rob were here, and Cathy brought Amanda, who is in training, and Connie, who is her assistant/backup midwife.

Cathy also did an exam while she was here and again my blood pressure is fine (despite all my sausage-feet swelling) and the baby's heartrate was great--very receptive to outside stimuli. (Bo also did not enjoy the proddings and kicked Cathy and then kicked me like crazy. Rob and the baby then had a "talk.") Bo has dropped even further, so that the head is now engaged and my measurements went from 37-8 last week down to 35! Yay for progress!!

To give you an idea of some of the crazy things that are making this so real for me, here is a partial list of the things that I now have on hand for the birth:
-8x10 drop cloth
-paper towels
-old towels
-old wash clothes
-heating pad
-crock pot
-2 qt round-bottom bowl
-household ammonia
-hydrogen peroxide
-alcohol (rubbing, not drinking, though I may have that too...)
-disposable diapers
-ultrasound gel
-bulb syringe
-digital thermometer
-sterile gloves
-lube jelly (ew)
-cord ring, rubber band applied with hemostat
-alcohol prep pad
-Vitamin K, 8" needle

I don't know what half that stuff is! Or what it's for. But they're all related to the fact that sometime in the next few weeks, if all goes according to plan, I'm going to have a baby in my house. That's just so strange, even though I've had around thirty-six weeks to get used to the idea. I'm definitely excited, but it's totally wild! Aaaaaaah!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Shower the People You Love with...Showers.

I got showered! Denise, Krista, Bethany, Kelly, and Sara threw me the most fun and wonderful shower yesterday! Someone had been reading my blog--I had Baby O m&ms!! It was a great time, and again I'm humbled by people being so sweet and generous. Wow!

My Mommy and me!
Yum! And how fun on my fabric!!These were fabulous! Like liquid shock tarts.
One of Bethany's many birds...
Me and Marianne.
Krista, Ireland, and Denise. Aw!
Mom with Diane Riley and Jimmye Greene!
How cute is this! There are cloth diapers hanging above this table where people could decorate onesies. I love personalized stuff!
A close-up of my birth theme verse that Denise made.
A crowd gathering around the decorating table.
I really didn't stick my fingers in anything, I promise.
Mom checking out the table.
Everybody loved the sour drinks! They were a great replacement for real cocktails.
Mom trying to make a baby hat fit on me. It doesn't.
Aw, my girls! Marianne, Kelly, and Sara.
The ladies cleaning up. Always the most fun part...?

Thursday, April 3, 2008

The Movie I'm Waiting For!

I think it's really fitting that Baby Mama is coming out on my due date. I love love LOVE Tina Fey and Amy Poehler and think this will be hilarious. Surrogacy has really become huge recently, and is a great and wonderful thing, but I also have no problem with a movie digging out the potential humor there.

I'm against taking babies to movies, but if Baby O still hasn't come, does anyone want to go see this with me??

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

The "Perfect" Mother

I was just watching Malcolm in the Middle (an amazing show) and was thinking about the TV Moms. Here is my perfect combination of TV Moms...

(In case you don't know, that's Lucille from Arrested Development and Lois from Malcolm in the Middle.)

Midwife Visit 36 Weeks!

I was all set to hear that I'm delivering this baby any moment now, but apparently, my cervix is "tightly closed." This would have made me very grumpy, since I've been feeling bad enough that I didn't think I could take this for another few weeks, BUT it turns out that I have a bladder infection. I've had strong Braxton-Hicks, which are helping me efface and are great for preparing me for labor, but the pain and the the huge amount of pressure I'm feeling when they happen (and pretty much when I walk or move) are due to the infection. I'm drowning myself in 100% cranberry juice and a great medecine from Cathy, and already feel better. Yay!

What's funny is that I had gained FIVE pounds since my last visit two weeks ago, which is bad, but as soon as Cathy saw my feet and ankles she started laughing and says, "Oh, that explains it." I have sausage toes now...sometimes so swollen I can't bend them. That also made me feel better, because I had no idea what I ate that could possibly have made me gain that much so quickly! Whew.

Baby moved back to the left side (yay!) and everything looks fantastic, other than my giant, swollen feet and my infecty bladder. I have to say I'm a *tad* disappointed that Baby O won't be arriving in the next week, but if s/he's not ready to come yet, then I'm not ready either! So we'll wait...

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

How You Know Your Baby Is Trying to Kill You

When you have to stop your grocery cart repeatedly because the baby is kicking you so hard that you simply cannot keep walking until you have pushed those tiny feet back where they belong. Seriously--does Bo just want out, or is this the equivalent of children throwing tantrums in the grocery store for a pack of M&Ms?

Incidentally, I did buy some on sale Easter candy (three cheers for those Cadbury's robin eggs!) and Bo has been much more polite ever since. Hmm...

The News Is Disturbing

I hardly ever watch the news because it's so depressing. I've joked about wanting an alternative called the GOOD News where not everything is about death and terrible things. Last night, I happened to leave the nightly news on and there were three stories concerning pregnant women and babies that confirmed my desire to turn off the TV at 10pm.

-A couple was struck by a hit and run driver this weekend and left in a ditch to die. The woman was five months pregnant with their child.
-A Houston woman missing since January was found in a shallow grave near Huntsville. She was due to give birth on Valentine's Day.

This one kills me:
-A 14-year old girl gave birth on a plane to a stillborn child and left it in the lavatory trash. She was returning to Houston from a school trip to NY. I don't know how they found that she was the mother, or how no one on the plane noticed this, or even how old the baby was. Apparently the girl said she did not know she was pregnant, and they have not released information on the age of the baby.

Stories like this certainly confirm my belief in man's inherent fallen nature, but at times, they also challenge my view of the sovereignty of God. It's hard to have faith that God cares enough to number the hairs on my head (Luke 12:7) when there are so many horrors on a large and small scale each day. But then, without trusting that He is sovereign in ways we may not yet understand, can we make any sense of these things? Or have hope for any justice on a grand scale? No--I think that it would be as Solomon said in Ecclesiastes: "Meaningless, all meaningless."

Faith is being certain in what is unseen (Hebrews 11:1). That is comforting, because if we simply go by what is seen on the nightly news, there is not much hope to be found.



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