Thursday, May 31, 2012

Well, That's New

I had an OB appointment this morning, which I was super excited to bring all three kids to, as I'm sure you can imagine.  But Brett left for NYC this morning, so with me they were coming.  We had a lovely morning playing around the house, and everyone got ready with no fuss or fighting, which was certainly a treat.  And then I squatted down to help Sophie get dressed.

And my water broke.

I tried to convince myself that it might just be pee even though I had just gone to the bathroom, but I knew better.  And when I started to change at the doctor's office so they could do the ph test to verify if it was indeed amniotic fluid, I was gushing down both legs. 

Question answered.

So now I'm at home, trying to figure out what to pack for the kids who are now coming along with me to the hospital until we can get one grandparent or another in town to watch them.  Needless to say, I'm not at my most focused right now, so I'm pretty sure whatever I pack is going to be a hot mess.

But who cares?


BlogHer Book Club: The First Husband

The First Husband by Laura Dave is a fast read, reasonably enjoyable, but chick lit at its thinnest.  A story about a woman who suddenly gets dumped by her long time boyfriend, and then immediately falls in love with and marries a new man, it could have been really fun.  I mean, ranomly marrying someone you barely know, and then picking up and moving cross country from LA to a tiny town on the East Coast is ripe with opportunities for culture shock humor.  But instead the author makes the main character so wishy washy and set on feeling sorry for herself that there were many times I wished I could just punch her in the face (the character, not the author).  You can only hope for a happy outcome for a character that mopes around bemoaning her horrible life without actually doing anything about it for so long, you know?

I won't say I didn't like the book, but I will say that by the requisite "aha" moment when the protagonist finally gets her act together and decides to actually take charge of her own happiness it was hard feeling like she deserved it.  This book would make a fabulous afternoon read by the pool, but it certainly isn't on the must read list.

Read more about this book at BlogHer Book Club

I was compensated for my participation in this book review, however all opinions are strictly my own.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Literally Nothing To Say

Still pregnant.  Today is the date I have spent 9 months wishing to have the baby on - we have a lovely little pattern of dates in the 20's going on for all birthdays and I really wanted to be consistent - Jack, Sophie and I are all born on the 20th of a month, Isabelle is the 22nd, and Brett is the 29th (which is also our anniversary), so as stupid as it sounds, it was kind of important to me that this baby keep up the trend.  Waking up this morning and realizing that what I have hoped for this whole time wasn't going to happen was a lot more upsetting than I would have anticipated- basically I no longer feel excited at all about going into labor.  Plus, Brett has been home for several weeks with no baby, but he has to go back on the road in June and after ruining all kinds of scheduled trips already he can't really miss any more events. So I guess now the goal will be to make it to my due date (June 22nd) which he will be home for.

I am also BEYOND confused about what day it is.  The kids have been out of school for a week now, and I've pretty much thought it was Saturday every single day.  We never go anywhere because it is hot, and I'm fat and everything hurts and none of my clothes are comfortable except for one pair of yoga capris I've been wearing for two weeks so I don't want to leave the house ever, and I am in some kind of groundhog day loop where every day is exactly the same.  Which I'm not actually complaining about (even though that sounded totally whiny), but definitely lends itself to mass confusion on what day of the week it is.

I've been reading like crazy - basically a book a day over the past week (I may need to choose more demanding books, lol), and my couch divot is getting deeper and deeper. 

Brett has started taking the kids (Jack and Izzy) over to a local park that has a tennis court and teaching them tennis.  They seem to really enjoy it (especially running lightning drills, the little weirdos), and for only four days so far, they are getting pretty good.  They can both return volleys and bounce serve it over the net no problem.  At some point I'll get over there with them and take a video so you can see too.  Today would be good because it is only 70 degrees today instead of 90, but our schedule doesn't really work out (and by that I mean Brett's schedule since I have nothing to do), so hopefully there will be another day when we can do it without having to suffer through inhumane temperatures.

Anyway, that is what is going on around here - super exciting I know.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Summer Time Out

Today is the first official day of summer break, and hopefully it will not be the first day of my mental breakdown because I will never get left alone for the next three months.  Don't get me wrong, I obviously love Isabelle, but I'm a person who needs a lot of silence and alone time, and she is a person who thrives on social interaction, and hasn't stopped speaking since 2007.

These types of people do not typically play well together.

I really try my best to engage with her at least a little bit during naptime since she is the only kid awake and SO desperate for attention; we play go fish, I take her to the store with me, and sometimes we do "girl time" and go get pedicures or maybe to the movies.  It's fun, and I really enjoy that time with her one on one, but unfortunately it doesn't end there.  If we aren't going I get asked to go places constantly, or worse, her passive aggressive comments about how she wishes we could go somewhere which drive me crazy.  Other times she just comes upstairs and basically sits there staring at me - also not especially good for my sanity.

It is a terrible feeling to want your kids to just leave you alone, but honestly, at naptime she really just needs to leave me alone!  When I don't get to have my decompression alone time I get very twitchy and cranky and I start to feel penned up - which are ridiculous reactions I know, but it's not really something I can help.  I'm an introvert and I need that time away from people with no one talking to me constantly.  Plus, she'll hang all over me all naptime, and then as soon as Jack gets up she says she wants to be alone and refuses to play with him, which naturally makes him upset and is a whole different type of fun for the rest of the afternoon. Not to mention makes me want to pull my hair out because oh my god, you just had two or three hours to be alone and you wouldn't!

You might say I'm not exactly looking forward to the next three months.

My plan is to let Jack stop having official naptime as well, and hopefully they will entertain each other reasonably well.  I'm also planning to get them some work books so they can practice reading and writing and whatnot before school starts again, which I will make them do if they insist on coming up out of the basement.  I think I will also suggest they clean the basement anytime they lurk around me waiting for me to entertain them.  If the threat of being forced to clean or do school work doesn't deter them from my presence, then I don't know what will.

September cannot get here soon enough.

ps: It's also hot in the summer.  And I HATE being hot.  So basically I' staring down the barrel of my least favorite months of the year, now with an extra dose of fun.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

BlogHer Book Club: Where She Went

First thing you should know about Where She Went by Gayle Forman is that it is a sequel.  This doesn't necessarily detract from the storyline, but a solid understanding of the events in the first book (If I Stay) will definitely deepen the emotional impact.  The second thing you should know is that it is in the young adult section at the book store, and as such takes about a second to read.  This is actually somewhat of a good thing because the story makes you want to keep reading and find out what happens, and how fast it is to read means you don't neglect too many of your regular responsibilities (not that that has ever stopped me).

The story revolves around a young man struggling with the abrupt ending of an intense love affair several years before.  He runs in to the girl who abandoned him, who he still loves deeply, and they spend the night together dancing around the end of their relationship and the feelings both still have.  It is not nearly as emotionally wrenching as the first book (which is excellent, btw), but it still portrays the conflict and confusion of love and loss very realistically.

I don't know if I would recommend this book on its own - it is such a quick read that it is almost inconsequential, but it is certainly enjoyable if you are looking for something quick and easy that still carries an emotional weight.  If anything I would suggest you read it along with the first book (which is from the girl's perspective and deals with the choice of life or death when faced with tragedy and left me bawling several times) because it offers another chapter in a touching story of two young people's lives. 

Read more about this book at BlogHer Book Club

I was compensated for my participation in this book review, however all opinions are strictly my own.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Not-So-Beauty Sleep

In atypical late pregnancy fashion, I am sleeping just fine.  I've got a home made pillow nest that leaves me very comfortable, and while I get up every two hours to pee, I'm up and back in bed and back asleep really quickly, so I don't feel like I'm really losing lack of rest or anything. But there is one little issue that is starting to interrupt my trips to dream land: for some reason I seem to keep folding/ bending/ squashing my ears while I sleep, which is most unpleasant.

I have no idea if I'm somehow doing something differently while I sleep, like moving my head backwards while it is still pressed into the pillow thus folding my ears, or if this is related to the hormone (relaxin?) that occurs during pregnancy to soften cartilage and allow the pubic bone to stretch to accommodate a baby.  Like, maybe the cartilage in my ears is softening so they fold more easily which is why they keep getting bent and squished and waking me up with their tiny bleats of pain?  I keep having to switch sides as I sleep (an extremely graceful and elegant process in my current condition) because my ear starts hurting.  It is super weird.

Sleeping solely on one side or the other has also helped me to notice the delightful effects of age on my decolletage.  Gravity + heavy pregnant boobs is giving me terrible cleavage wrinkles every morning when I wake up.  And while this isn't exactly a new phenomenon, it is taking longer and longer every morning before they go away.  My chest is the only area on my body that really shows any kind of reaction to the sun (despite always applying sunscreen there, even when I don't wear it anywhere else), or sun damage at all (I'm assuming because I primarily wear scoop/ v-neck shirts so it's always exposed), and clearly time is taking it's toll.  I have pretty decent young skin on my face- no crows feet or anything yet aside from some very deep expression lines across my forehead that I've had for years because apparently I'm incredulous a lot or just look that way, but my chest doesn't seem to be fighting the good fight in the same manner.

So while I may be getting the rest I need, between the red smushed ears and the firmly creased boobs, I don't think you could call it beauty sleep.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

State Of The Union: 34 Weeks (plus some)

I made it to goal #2 - 34 weeks, with little fanfare and nothing to show except an ever expanding waistline and increasingly short temper.  I no longer have to see the perinatologist, and apparently all concern for an early delivery has evaporated from my doctor's minds, leaving in place the apparent notion that I'm going to go the full 40 weeks, or even past.  If her constant references to 41 weeks are any indication.

Which brings me to my next point: I am DONE.

I am rapidly losing any patience whatsoever for being pregnant - I will endure and make the best of my final pregnancy for as long as it takes (obviously) but let me caution you SEVERELY against making any remark within my hearing that I may not go into labor for weeks yet.  Seriously, this is not a joke.  I do not care in the slightest about "the longer that baby stays in there the better" or any other commonly accepted medical crap knowledge.  I'm done, the baby is done, and any comment to the contrary will be viewed as darkest betrayal.  I want positive thoughts for immediate labor and delivery, or at the very least, for my delicately maintained hopes not to be dashed.

The staff at my doctor's office is desperately in danger of being punched at their continued happiness I am still pregnant, and if my doctor says one more thing about going PAST my due date I bear no responsibility for what may follow.  It's like the cruelest form of taunting to get me all excited about an early delivery (I want to see if this baby is a boy or girl SO BADLY) and then yank it away and imply that I may still have months to go.  Do they not know to avoid provoking a pregnant lady?  They must have a death wish.

Seriously, refrain from thinking this is anything even resembling a joke.  I am a firm believer in creative visualization and putting out into the universe what you hope to receive, and anyone who 'hopes I'll make it another three or four weeks' or even MENTIONS June to me is throwing a firm wrench into the happy little universe where every day might possibly me "the day". I'm not even going to say you are wrong for feeling that way, but if you know what's good for you, I'll thank you to keep it to yourself.

And my husband thanks you for not antagonizing his increasingly cranky wife.  I imagine I'll be quite intolerable to live with shortly (if not already), so for his sake if not my own, pray for baby to make an arrival shortly.

ps: just to clarify, I am fine(ish) with the pregnancy taking as long as it takes.  Sure, I'm uncomfortable and the baby is going to be HUGE if I go another whole month, but there's only so much I can do about it. Which is why the assuming, or worse, the WISHING that it will last another four weeks infuriates me.  If I go until my due date, so be it, but you can bet your ass I'll be starting and ending every single day praying for labor to begin.  And I'll accept nothing less from anyone else. The mantra is "today is the day;" learn it, love it, live it!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Vote Now

Well, as we are nearing the end of this pregnancy, I figured it was time to get a poll going.  If you check the left hand side of my main blog page you will see a poll asking whether you think the baby will be a boy or a girl - please vote!

Also, leave a comment with your best guess for day/ time of delivery.  I haven't really thought this through, but if I can come up with a way that is fair, the person who comes closest may even get a prize!  Or not - I will be busy with a newborn after all (and no one reads this blog anymore so there may not be any comments, ha!)

But guessing is still fun, right?

None Of This Can Make A Whole Blog Post

First, an update: I saw the perinatologist yesterday (who had no clue I had even been hospitalized, hooray for thorough record keeping) and his opinion is that I'm 2 cm dilated.  But that cervical check also didn't hurt even a little, so I'm not sure he did it right.  They also measured the baby via ultrasound, and with a weight of 5lbs 5oz already I think we are in great shape if there is an early delivery.  Also, now i REALLY want to deliver early - if I go another 6 weeks this sucker is going to be huge!

Second: we have this big pine tree in our front yard that we call the bird condo because every spring it seems like hundreds of birds make their nests in there.  It is super dense and prickly, and last year I could visibly see three different nests without even touching the branches, so I can only imagine how many are actually in there.  Obviously, there is nothing particularly note worthy about this, except that every morning about 5am the birds apparently throw some kind of avian frat party, and the chirping is completely out of control.  I love the cool weather we've been having, and keeping my window open at night, but OMG the early morning cacophany.

Third: the past few mornings around 8am I've heard this incessant hooting, which I'm assuming is an owl, because I don't know what else makes a sound like that (you know, given my extensive knowledge of bird calls).  I really want to find that owl - you don't see them very often.

Fourth: Last night I was brushing my teeth and looking in the mirror, and the side of my stomach was just sort of pulsing in and out.  I couldn't feel any movement at all, so it was sort of creepy.  Looked like special effects.

Fifth: I can't remember what other bit of fascinating information I was going to share.

Guess you're off the hook for now!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Hurry Up And Wait

If you follow me on Twitter of Facebook, you probably already know all about my exciting trip to the hospital on Friday.  But just in case you missed it, or are curious about the outcome, here's the full story:

Friday morning after we dropped Izzy off at school, my mom and I took Jack and Sophie to Lowe's to look at the flowers and plants for our garden.  We weren't there particularly long, but standing around staring at plants still managed to be incredibly uncomfortable for me (I wonder why?), and by the time we left I was super grateful to get to sit down in the car and take the pressure of my feet and knees and stomach muscles and back - all of which were barking at my gall that I could stand up for more than 3 minutes.

We proceeded to the grocery store, during which the cramping and back pain got more painful and insistent.  Not contractions, just an increasing pressure and pain., both in the front and my back.  Super fun.  So I figured I'd go home and lay down, and if it didn't stop I would call the doctor.

But after sitting it did stop, and I felt fine.  So I didn't call the doctor, but I did decide to do a kick count on the baby.  And after two hours I'd only felt about 4 movements, so of course I thought I should call the doctor, even though I knew I'd have to go in to the office, and I could tell that nothing was really happening and I didn't really need to be checked out.  I should have listened to myself, but I didn't, so I called.

And I had to go in to the office, where the fetal monitor showed perfectly normal and healthy reactions by the baby, just like I knew it would.

Then they checked my cervix.  And it was dilated apparently 2 cm, with a hand presenting on top (below?) the baby's skull (ew, gross), which is apparently abnormal and source for concern because they sent me to the hospital.

Where I was once again strapped to the fetal monitor (again, results totally normal), and subjected to another cervical check.  Those suckers just never get old.  This time the doctor thought my cervix was more like 4 cm dilated, but of course, she had no frame of reference because it was a different person checking this time, and you never know if her 4 cm is the other lady's 2cm or if I really had dilated more.

So hell, why not just make me stay in the hospital?

I was immediately told I wouldn't be leaving (possibly EVER until I had the baby), and that they would be checking the fetal monitor every four hours (despite completely normal results every time), but NOT be rechecking my cervix again, even though that was what landed me there in the first place.  Which kind of strikes me as stupid.  I mean, I understand that repeatedly fiddling in that area can actually cause the dilation to advance, but there is a difference between wanting to avoid exacerbating the situation and not getting potentially helpful diagnostic information.  But apparently they didn't feel the same.

So after freaking everyone out because I was now in the hospital on bed rest, having my husband rush away from work to get a flight home, getting woken up every four hours all night, the doctor (the fourth one I'd seen - I never saw anyone more than once) came in the morning and said there was no reason for me to be there and I could go home.  Um, couldn't we have done that last night, before my husband changed his work schedule, and the two painful attempts at giving me an IV, and all of my children crying because suddenly I was in the hospital?  Especially since they STILL didn't bother checking my cervix again?  Annoying.

AND, I'm not even on bed rest at home!  Basically he was like "well, you are far enough along and have had the steroids and you're not contracting, so we aren't going to do anything to stop you from going in to labor, so whatever happens happens."  Seriously.  I had to stay a night in the hospital for "whatever happens happens?"  My insurance is going to love that, I'm sure.

So as it stands now, I have no idea how dilated I am because the same person has yet to do a cervical check twice so we have no frame of reference.  I have no idea whether it seems likely I'll go into labor soon or if I have weeks and weeks left.  I'm supposed to see the perinatologist again tomorrow morning, and hopefully there will be a more concrete answer on the state of my cervix and if things are really progressing as rapidly as they seem to be.  The only thing I do know, is that I'm not calling the doctor's office again unless I REALLY have a problem.  If I end up in the hospital again I better be having a baby!

Life Well Lived: Dressing The Bump

This week's Life Well Lived topic revolves around how we each choose to dress to best flatter our individual shapes.  When I first saw the question, I have to admit I laughed a bit - as much as I love fashion and clothes, I'm hardly in a position to be giving much advice on flattering fit right now!  But then I realized that while my current shape may be short lived (at least I hope so!), it is one of the most difficult to dress.  Nothing like the extreme discomfort of late pregnancy to make you want to throw your hands up in surrender and just waddle around wearing giant t-shirts and sweat pants, am I right?  But we all know that looking good typically leads to feeling good, so let me give you the only piece of advice you will ever need for looking good during pregnancy:

Form fitting is figure flattering.

Now I know, when you are thirty pounds overweight (and still gaining) wearing something that hugs your curves is probably the last thing you want to do.  But resist, resist, resist the urge to tent yourself in giant blousy tops because while you may feel comfortable, instead of looking charmingly pregnant, you will just look fat.  Probably not what you were aiming for, right?  This does not mean you have to wear anything tight - just make sure your top lays along the contours of your newly rotund body.

And this tip goes for all trimesters - early on, you want to show off that tiny bump so people don't just think you've been slacking on your diet or workout routine.  And later on, even though you might feel it is beyond obvious that you are incubating a human and not just sporting a beer keg under your shirt, it is still nice to flaunt that pleasing round shape - nothing makes me feel better about myself when I'm miserably waddling through the store than to see all the the smiles I get when people spot my belly.  I may feel fat and lumpy and be unable to tie my own shoes, but at least strangers think I look cute!

How do you best dress YOUR shape?  Go to to share your tips.  And don't forget to enter the Life Well Lived sweepstakes!