Monthly Archives: October 2008

36w3d

I wasn’t sure I would get this far, but today I’ve equalled my record of days pregnant.

B was born, an emergency cesarean, at 36w3d. After a Thursday night of delightful Jon Stewart and a few minutes of the talentless Colin whoever who left me cursing that he was given a TV show. After the water trickled at 2:30am Friday, then rolled out, a wave no bathtowel could match.  We slowly got our things together; I told one of my staff via IRC that I wouldn’t be making our 7:30 telcon, H lined the passenger seat with lawn bags and towels, and I waddled out in a sundress, the only thing I had left that fit, with a green towel wedged between my legs, as calm as could be.

This time, I understood how remarkable it was that I actually got pregnant – most women with a bicornuate uterus have a 40-45% chance of miscarriage.  As far as conception goes, I’m 2 for 2.

I had no overseas trips, no real business to tend to other than mothering and shepherding little one along to term. That said, a job would have been a welcome distraction from the sickness and unexpected worries of the first and second trimesters, not to mention the disturbing surprise at the top of the third.

Yet here we are. At her last ultrasound exam, I thrilled to hear of a growth spurt. Weightwise, she has managed to climb back up to 50th percentile. Her head is measuring close to her brother’s, otherwise known as the melon on the vine. The neonatologist hugged me, saying “Congratulations! She is just as normal as can be.” I called H and my mother – both times shaking and in tears. I saved my energy to write email to the rest of my family and friends, since I knew I’d just be whimpering with joy and relief if I made another call.

Little one is moving briskly and with impunity – mama feels all sorts of things in parts of her body she didn’t know her uterus could go. I think she likes to kick my appendix, or loop her foot around my hipbone. There’s always something poking down there that isn’t mine.

H calls everyday at noon, just making sure I haven’t gone into labor. Don’t tell him, but I think I’ll be driving myself to the hospital this time, just to make sure we get to the right place.

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Filed under "getting ready for baby", Motherhood, pregnancy, pregnant after 40, prenatal care

34w4d

Zen lessons continue unabated in the Little One Prenatal Challenge. This week, it began at my OB’s office. Her assistant said, “We’ve scheduled your delivery – Wednesday 19 November at 1pm.”

My eyes popped. “Are you serious? You’re aware there’s no way I’ll get that far.” (A known uterine abnormality prevented me from even getting to term with Ben; plus, my current profile scared a fellow patron at the coffee shop who thought for sure I would be giving birth at the pick-up counter.)

The assistant agreed. “I know, I agree with you. But this is hospital procedure.”

“So, since the delivery is scheduled on a date that is medically impossible for me to reach, what do I do when my water breaks? How will this be any different than what happened the first time, when I ended up with an emergency C-section at 36w3d?”

The short answer is – it won’t be any different. Except that now I’ve been given conflicting instructions by two staff at the practice, one of which included instructing the physician on-call of my medical conditions, because, I guess, THEY CAN’T BE EXPECTED TO READ A CHART.

So my zen lesson is – of course I could have gone to a midwifery practice. I would have had informed partner-based care throughout the pregnancy, I still would have been sent to the specialist practice for diagnostics, and had a chance for the wonder MD to deliver. I’m preparing an information sheet now to give to H in case I faint or something gets in the way of me explaining my medical condition once we’re at the hospital. But instead of getting really angry, I just shook my head.

Meanwhile, she is rolling and wedging herself into unusual positions. This is a mix of good and bad – good, because she is active: bad because she is pushing the air out of my lungs with different parts of her body I have yet to identify at unexpected times. H does his best to greet me each morning with a spoon, his fingers resting on my belly hoping to pat his daughter to be. He marvels out loud at her strength, and speed of movements. Later if we share a car trip somewhere, he uses both hands to pull me out of his car (the ’99 Honda Accord starts to feel like a low-rider when you’re this size). My waddle gets slower and slower, as the body gives way to the bump.

Food tolerances are almost normal. I can eat many of the things I usually love, if not in the same quantities. Finally, chocolate! Small amounts of fresh grapefruit! These are little pleasures, which are nearly as delightful as the memory of the first glass of water I was allowed to drink after B was born.

The baby bag is nearly packed, and we have a full wardrobe waiting for her entrance. Now as long as the gender predictions hold, we’ll be ready to be fully unprepared all over again.

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one more for today (funny)

Check out the path one extremely dissatisfied surfer took to my site:

http://search.conduit.com/Results.aspx?q=pictures%20of%20couples%20making%20love%20on%20a%20kitchen%20table&meta=all&hl=en&gl=ca&SelfSearch=1&SearchSourceOrigin=10&ctid=CT1370655

Ha Ha! Got there months too late – all that’s left is a pregnant lady! ;)

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yes we can (hold babies)

After seeing too many videos of the unbridled hatred encouraged to fester at McCain-Palin rallies, I sought refuge in the blog of a college student called “Yes We Can (Hold Babies)“. Too cute for words, yet not treacly. And definitely deserving of your support.

Late update, for ralph: My favorite, right here:

the happiest boy in the world

the happiest boy in the world

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Filed under babies, children, cute, Obama, Politics

what is great about being pregnant, 30w+

This pregnancy has been full of uncertainty and worry; only recently have I been able to enjoy it more fully.

Even though I am having more trouble getting around (hah), it’s a pleasure to be out and about. Generally speaking, I think people treat pregnant women pretty well. Strangers smile, offer congratulations and well wishes. Sometimes I wonder what it would be like if that were standard operating procedure. My own social experiences are usually pretty positive, but it would be even better to have that sense of good will more often than the days I’m visibly pregnant.

But if I recall my own behavior, expectant moms get top of the list treatment. They’re brave, whether they know it yet or not. They are making a visible, good faith commitment to a world that has no explicit interest in their well-being, and offering the most precious and vulnerable effort they will likely ever make in their lives to that apathetic (at best) place. So who among us, especially parents, wouldn’t smile, with their hearts in their eyes, hoping that future mother wouldn’t find a better place than we may know to date. That maybe this time, with this mother, it will be different, better, the changing point.

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petite and powerful

This is my new mantra – every morning, as I roll all of my weight onto my elbow in order to sit up, swinging my legs over the edge of the bed. Petite and powerful I whisper with every kick, blurb, roll over. Petite and powerful, she dances 30 minutes after my first glass of orange juice, waves to her future big brother through the opening in my bathrobe, under an expanding belly that looks more like bread dough about to overtake the bowl.

Petite and powerful is what I hoped, silently, on our way to the specialists’ office last Friday afternoon, when H took wrong turn after wrong turn, making me wish we had relied on my car and sense of direction. Petite and powerful I thought, feeling the warm sticky gel on my abdomen, while saying to the 5th tech, “Bicornuate uterus, placenta at the top of the left fundus, very active, though she lost a quadrile in weight last month”. Petite and powerful held her own this month, staying in the 30’s percentilewise, giving her father and mother breathing room – though keeping her mother chained to 120g protein a day.

At this stage of the game, it means she’s about 4 lbs, and that the best signals we have from her are the powerful – her movements are hardly ever delicate. She muscles around just like her brother, looking for space to stretch. She sometimes sends an arm or leg low in my womb, as if she’s going to kick her way out. When she’s quiet for a long stretch, I go back to the fridge for a juice, sip a cup, and wait.

Yesterday, the nurse at my regular OB’s office confirmed my thinking – all I have to do is make it through the next 4 weeks, eating plenty of protein, keeping off my feet, and avoiding stress. To that, I add “petite and powerful”, and feel 1 November coming to meet the both of us, bringing her out to meet the world.

By the way, the love and support we’ve received since my last post has been a godsend. I think it kept both of us growing, supported, and strong. My love and thanks in return.

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