Wednesday, December 30, 2009

35 weeks

Lots of excitement this week!

First, I have passed the 35 week mark, so I can officially deliver at my rinky dink hospital instead of fretting about a back up plan with unknown drs at other hospitals.

Second, the baby dropped! About Sunday I started having a lot more back pain and having to pee like crazy (seriously, I finish going to the bathroom, stand up and have to sit right back down again), anyhow, I got my weekly pregnancy update email and it said that it's normal for babies to start dropping at this point in a first pregnancy and the signs were exactly what I had been feeling. So yay!

Third, Contractions! I'm having more of them and they aren't scary so I think it's ok to celebrate them at this point. I've had them before, but they are getting to be more "classical" braxton hicks. In fact, I had three "little" ones on the NST monitor this morning. I looked over and my jaw dropped when I saw my toco percentage as high as it was cause I wasn't really feeling it. DH took me since the weather was bad and I said to him, "Holy crap, it's actually doing something!" And then it did it again, and again. My MFM confirmed them when he came over and wrote a little note on the front of my chart. This is by far the most interesting thing that has happened to me in that office.

So, I'm optimistic that maybe signs are pointing to him coming a little before 40 weeks. Which also freaks me out a little, because I feel so unprepared. However, I am the perpetual procrastinator. I do my best work at the wire. (*Whispers* And maybe I won't worry as much about being induced.)

BPP and NST were perfect today, even with my 3 little contractions. AFI=14.

And it looks like I've FINALLY found a doula. I'm meeting with her this weekend.

And we signed up for day care last night. It was more money than we wanted to spend, but it was almost impossible to find infant openings around here. It looks like a really nice center and it's probably less than a mile from my office. I brought my diapers to show them and they were really receptive to them and even somewhat excited (I don't think they've cloth diapered there before).

So now that I feel like the pregnancy is making progress and I've got a couple of other things off my to do list, I'm feeling much more relaxed all of a sudden. I had been just a touch stressed out, so this is good.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Super Long Cloth Diaper Post

I've mentioned cloth diapering a couple of times. I don't know when the idea crept into my head, but I have some how managed to convince husband and myself to brave the waters of cloth diapering. My husband is a really easy going guy and almost never challenges me on household things (unless a hole in the wall is involved) but this he was against, big time. I was surprised his feeling were so strong but eventually I won him over. And as I started getting more into this stuff it eventually took me over. Be warned, cloth diapering is addictive.

There are a lot of 'top ten' lists out there for reasons to cloth diaper. Here's mine:

1. I haven't done the calculations, but it just seems like it has to be better for the environment. I know their are counter arguments, but still, the other option seems to be throwing thousands of plastic, poopy diapers in a landfill and I just don't see how that could be better.

2. It also seems like it would be better for baby... I mean I would prefer cloth underwear to a plastic maxi pad, so I'm just saying.

3. And how about skin to skin time? I'd rather have a baby in a soft cloth diaper against me rather than a crinkly plastic diaper.

4. Smells. We only have 1 trash pick up per week here and I cannot tell you how bad the cat trash smells, and OMG, during the summer when it's warm, it could melt eyeballs. I cannot imagine how horrid a week of diapers would smell. However, washing a couple of loads per week ought to really minimize the smell factor (I think this was a big selling point for DH). Plus, I have volunteered to handle the human poo as long as he continues to handle the cat poo.

5. Cute. Cloth diapers are so cute! Way cuter than any disposable. I have to hold myself back from spending a ton on the cute stuff and have put together a plainer stash, but it's still pretty cute. (But seriously, if I were having a girl, I would have a diaper to match every dress and some ruffly butt diapers!)

That's my list... I ain't got 10 reasons, 5 is enough for me. Not on the list is saving $, because although I know you can do it for less than disposables, I'm not sure that I will, and one can easily spend WAY more on cloth than disposables.

There is a huge learning curve for all the terminology with IF, but somehow it's just as bad for the super complicated world of cloth diapers. How could poop catchers be so complicated? So, forgive me if I don't explain something fully.

So I have a bit of a show and tell here and I will try to explain the stash I have acquired.

When I bought some of my stash I was optimistic that the baby won't be huge. Unless he comes early, he isn't going to be a little 7.5 pounder, so I may not get a ton of use out of some of the smaller sized items.

All in Ones (AIOs) - Everything is together and using one is pretty much like using a disposable. They are easy to use but because the diaper doesn't come apart they can be harder to get clean and take longer to dry.

I have 2 Sposoeasy AIOs. They are cotton on the inside with a PUL (polyurethane laminate) waterproof outer (PUL is soft on the outside and not plasticy in case you were wondering). First, I think these are adorable and they look like could win over any disposable user. The downside, I probably won't get a lot of use out of them because they are newborn sized and for the general weight range of 4-10 lbs). Their design allows to accommodate a larger waist but the rise is pretty short and that's probably what my baby will outgrow quickly. These diapers were an indulgence, I just hope I get a couple weeks out of them.

Pockets - Pocket diapers are usually a PUL outer with a inner (usually a "stay dry" fabric) layer that is left open in the back to form a pocket opening that an insert can be stuffed into. Once the diaper is stuffed it's like an AIO. The can be stuffed with different inserts (mircofiber, hemp, prefolds) for the needed level of absorbency.

There are lots and lots of pocket diapers out there. Two of the most popular are BumGenius and Fuzzibunz. Everyone seems to have their own opinion about which one is best so I decided to buy some of each and figure it out for myself. I bought 6 of each in their "One Size" model. One size diapers are designed to fit children from about 8lbs to 35lbs by adjusting the diapers. So I plan to get a lot of use out of these diapers. I will probably invest in several more of these after I figure out what works best for us.

The BumGenius 3.0 pockets have rise snaps in the front that can be snapped down to adjust the rise of the diaper. The waist is adjusted by fastening the velcro tighter. People say the fit of these diapers is great and the velcro is easy to use. The down side is that the velcro tends to get worn quickly and not work so well and eventually children learn how to pull the velcro off and ditch their diapers. The diapers can be converted to snaps fairly easily with not too much work, so if I end up really getting a lot of use out of these I may end up doing that at some point.

Fuzzibunz diapers are quite different from the BGs. There is adjustable elastic in the leg gussets that can be tightened or loosened. This feature makes them very adjustable and they seem a little more trim to me than the BGs because of this. The elastic in the back at the waist can also be adjusted. And Fuzzibunz will provide replacement elastic for the lifetime of the diaper. Another big difference is the snaps on the front. The snaps allow to help adjust of the waist and leg fit. These diapers seem like they could be adjusted to fit as well if not better than the BGs and the snaps should be harder for an older child to pull off... but that also means they may be harder to put on.

Prefolds (PFs) - PFs are pretty much what most of the world thinks of when they think of cloth diapers. They are old school, but most people that cloth diaper and give PFs a chance swear by them. They don't have any water proof covering so you have to put a cover over them. Their are lots of different folds that can be used and either snappi'ed or pinned on. And another option is to just trifold them and lay them in the cover your using (no snappis or pins required, but I hear the poo is more likely to leak). You can also have a lot of fun with PFs by embellishing them with decorative fabrics or dying them (some people dye PFs, socks and t-shirts and then they have a perfect match).

There are lots of PF makers out there but the important thing is to get a diaper service quality PF. If you are diapering, DON'T buy the Gerber PFs (they are fine for burp cloths, but they aren't very absorbent). I went with the Green Mountain Diaper Cloth-eez PFs. They sell several different sizes of PF so that you don't have to fold down the diaper (which makes them less bulky).

So, in an optimistic mood I bought 2 dozen "orange edge" PF, which are basically the newborn size. Probably a dumb move. It would have been smarter to limit myself to only 1 dozen if I just had to have the newborn size so bad, but I was thinking positively (and newborns poop a lot). I think I'll be lucky if I get an month out of these. However, PFs are very utilitarian. I will still be able to stuff pockets and use them as doublers and spit up rags and baby boy pee shields. And there is an aftermarket for diapers so I could sell them when I get done with them. PFs retain their value pretty well and GMD PFs are like Hondas.

But I was also a realist and got 2 dozen "yellow edge" infant sized PFs too. These should get me a bit further. After he outgrows these I might get some larger PFs, or I might decide that pockets are the way to go, or maybe try flats at that point. I haven't figured that out just yet.

Fitteds - Fitteds are a cloth diaper shaped to fit the baby but have no water proof layer and still need a cover. I was mentioning the cute factor, and the $$ factor earlier... these diapers can end up being the epitome of overpriced, cute poop catchers so I have tried to stay away. But the other day, they got me.

There are a lot of makers of fitteds, especially work at home moms. You can get some of the WAHMs to make custom fitteds for you, or if you are crafty you can make them yourself pretty easily too (especially if you have a serger), hence lots of variety out there. Two more popular fitteds are Muttaqin Baby and Goodmamas. Although the Goodmamas are adorable, they are easier to resist with their $29-40 price tags (and remember, you still need to put a cover over them, or risk your furniture).

I truly had no intention of buying any fitteds, but I couldn't help but window shop the Mutts site (addiction?) and they had one called "Neverland". Now, you all don't know this about me, but I LOVE Peter Pan. I just think it's probably the best children's story ever... although I'm not much into the Disney animated version. So when I saw the Neverland diaper, I knew it must be mine. This is a 3SR (3 Size Rise) which is made to fit babies over a variety of sizes like the One Size pockets.

And since I was getting one of their 3SR diapers I figured that I had to get a newborn Mutt too, because people are crazy about NB Mutts. Unlike my other newborn purchases that the kid will probably either be too big for at birth or grow out of in less than a month, NB Mutts are made to fit up to 15lbs so it should last a while. So since I had a pirate-ish (Neverland) print, I decided to get a Ninja print in the NB. Yes, it's Pirates vs. Ninjas! Cause what's the fun in having a boy if you can't put pirate and ninja diapers on him? That is perfectly logical.

And then I thought I was done with fitteds, but the uber-expensive Goodmama decided to run a 40% off sale around Thanksgiving, so I bought 2. These are "one size", but really bulky on a small baby, so I probably won't try these until he's gets a bit larger. Plus, I'm not super happy with the quaility, the green one was missing a snap so I need to send it back to be fixed (this is apparently a common problem). There customer service seems to be good, but you expect a diaper that retails for this much to arrive in perfect condition.

And my last diapers don't really fit into any of the normal diaper categories: Tie Nappies. I got a 3 pack of Disana tie nappies. They are a cotton knit that can be folded to fit all sizes of babies. I hear they are great for night time diapering and they are really cute too. They needed a doubler of some sort and a cover, but they just look so comfy I had to try them. Some people find the ties too difficult, I think their is an advantage of learning on a newborn before they get too squirmy.

Doublers and Inserts - A doubler or insert is used to add absorbancy to a diaper. The difference (as I understand it) is that a doubler can go against baby's skin, but inserts should have a layer over them (microfiber should never go directly against baby). I have a bunch of inserts for my pocket diapers. The Fuzzibunz come with 2 microfiber inserts each (a small and long). I got adjustable microfiber inserts for my BGs (since they were seconds I had to buy the inserts separately). I also have some hemp inserts and some fleece stay dry liners. I hoping to get a little more hemp (it's trim and very absorbent). A lot of people have trouble with microfiber getting smelly, so we will see how that goes. And of course, a PF can be used as an doubler too.

So there are my diapers for now. I'm hoping that I'm well covered for a couple of months, but I will probably have to get some more pockets or AIOs if I want a day care to cloth diaper him.

All the diapers I listed need covers except for AIOs and Pockets, so I have my cover choices listed below.

Prowraps - I got 2 newborn Prowraps (6-10lbs) because they are cheap and have a notch that's good for avoiding the umbilical stump. I wasn't being optimistic with this purchase but I was more worried about that umbilical stump than anything. Even if I don't get a ton of use out of these I won't be upset because they are really economical.

Thirsties - I got 4 XS Thirsties wraps (6-12 lbs). They are supposedly generously sized so hopefully I get a little use out of these. They have a double gusset around the legs for keeping blowouts contained and are a more popular choice out there. And they have lots of colors to choose from!

Bummis Super Brite Wraps (BSBW) - I got 2 S of these and the are designed for 8-16lbs so I should get some good use here too. They have a double gusset around the legs and look pretty good for conatining the poo. I don't like how scratchy the velcro/aplix is on these, it's the scratchiest of any of the covers or diapers I have.

Bummis Super Whisper Wrap (BSWW) - I only got 1 these (size S, 8.5-15lbs). Some people love them and some people don't. One draw back is that the legs don't have the double gussets, so leaks may be an issue, and the other problem is that the wrap is fabric-like on the inside and doesn't wipe clean like other other PUL wraps. You can usually get several wears out of a wrap before washing (unless poo gets on them) but the fabric inner has given these wraps a reputation for getting stinky quickly. However, you might have noticed how CUTE it is. Yes, victim of the cute here.

Disana Wool Soakers - I got 2 NB (6-13lbs) and 1 S (11-18lbs). I have fallen head over heals for wool. Wool soakers make almost bullet proof covers and, unless they get poopy, they only have to be washed every couple weeks because the lanolin in them actually neutralizes and cleans the cover when it gets wet. It's a natural fiber and totally breathable. And Cute! And wonderfully soft too, no scratchy wool for my baby. They do need to be handwashed and relanolinized every couple of weeks.

Rainbow Waters Wool Longies - These might be my biggest regret. They are really cute, but the waist seems so tiny I wonder if they will fit him at all. I really wanted a pair of longies since I'm due in February and figured if the only lasted through March I wouldn't care but I'm not sure these will work at all. I'd get another pair, but the are pretty expensive and I don't want to sink money into a pair that is too big and won't get any cold weather wear.

So that's my stash. Of course I have lots of accessories too. I have lots of cloth wipes (it took a while to convince me to do those, but I'm there finally), diaper pins, snappis, wet bags, diaper pail and liners, wool wash, lanolin, special laundry detergent, special cloth diaper safe rash creams, flushable liners.... The diapers are overwhelming enough, I'm not even getting into the accessories. And reading about diaper laundering about makes my head explode. But I think the best thing to do is to just decide on a system and stick with and tweak as needed (God bless the internet and quick shipping). And there are websites out there like Diaper Swappers with lots of experienced moms out there to help.

My advice if you want to get into this is to ask someone if you know someone that has done it recently (cause it's a lot different than it was for our moms and grandmas)... but if you are like me and all alone the internet is helpful (perhaps overly so). Start by reading about products at Green Mountain Diapers and you will have the hang of the basics of diapers. Find a cloth diaper blog to subscribe to like All About Cloth Diapers or The Cloth Diaper Whisper. Decide what you want and then price shop. Look for deals and free shipping. Kelly's Closet offers regular discounts and has a rewards system that can save you a little money. For the adventerous, FSOT (For Sale or Trade) on Diaper Swappers is a great place to save money, but buyer beware, you get what you pay for. Hyenacart is the place to go for WAHM and custom stuff. You can buy kits or sampler packs to take some of the work out of building a stash. But the most important thing is to realize what works great for someone won't work for everyone so it is a trial and error process so a little determination is necessary. And there is a time and place for disposables, so if you have to give in every once in a while don't feel guilty, a happy baby and sane mom are more important than cute diapers.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas with the Family

So me and my mom haven't been getting along so well (for the last 26 years)...

We got into an argument before Thanksgiving. I told her I was through playing her games and was willing to admit that I haven't been perfect in our relationship if she was willing to also. In stead she decided to keep up the BS and scream and cry and tell me what I bully I am. So DH and I decided that our presence was not required at Thanksgiving.

My dad started up the conversations with me again a few weeks later and eventually pushed me into talking with my mom because she went out and bought tons of baby stuff... which was very nice, but this is part of the game too. She tries to control us with things and money and knew she could get back in. And I let her and accepted her gifts. I thought things might be different, at least for awhile.

But Christmas...

DH and I decided that we would go to Christmas with my family on Saturday. I called early in the day because I wanted to make sure what time we were eating and what time they served lunch at my Grandma's nursing home because we were going to stop and visit her on our way there. Well, that annoyed the hell out of her. Don't ask me why, she's just in a bad mood to begin with 97% of the time, so it doesn't take much.

Then, my poor sister called to ask about dinner too and my mom ripped off her head, so she decided not to come at all. I talked to her later and her feelings were if my mom can't be happy about anything and 100% negative, she didn't want to be around her. I don't blame her, she was better off staying home.

So as soon as we arrived at the house, we were all in hot water... for being alive. It was just horrible behavior ontop of more horrible behavior from her.

I asked if there was something I could do to help get dinner ready and she replied, "Cut me some slack in life." (Um, I had just got there FYI).

She yelled at everyone and had unprovoked breakdown after unprovoked breakdown. She proceeded to chastise my two SILs for spending holidays with their own families (even though they always make it for my family's celebrations too).

My poor nephew even took a verbal beating from her after he tried to say something nice.

After the evening was over and everyone had headed home, I called my sister and SILs. One of my SILs was in tears after being chastised for spending time with her family... my mom was acting in particularly bad taste since her grandma had just died (and my mom knew this), and my SIL really does do a good job of making it to family events and letting my parents see the grandchild frequently. My other SIL is so used to being put down by my mom it doesn't even phase her anymore.

I found out from my sister that my mom has been telling everyone that I don't want to talk about the pregnancy and that the subject is 100% off limits. That explains a lot. I found out from one of my SILs that my mom told her I hated her and my nephew. My mom is effing nuts.

I am really, REALLY done with this crap. She needs professional help and you can't get her to get any, and I can't do it for her. Their is coming a day, soon, when I lay it out for her, Get help or else. My child doesn't need to be exposed to this.

Oh, at least I've got some cuddly kitties.

(even blurry, they are still adorable)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

34 weeks

DH took off this week and next (cause gets tons of vacation). Since he was home, I decided to reinstate his drs office visit privileges (they were revoked after my last visit with my former OB). And I thought it would be good for him to meet McSoothy since we are getting closer to the end.

You know, I love McSoothy, but I'm not wild about her clinic. McSoothy is located in an interesting town. I know not to be surprised by the clientèle that comes into the clinic, but DH hasn't really been exposed to it all yet.

So at our visit the other day the nurses all had to go out to the parking lot because someone was sleeping in their car while rolling backwards through the parking lot.

Then some little punk teen cusses and throws a fit on his way out of the clinic only to return later and sit next to us accompanied by his mom and sister (I'm guessing). He was wearing flip flops and I won't even go into the rest of his ensemble... let's just put it this way, the cussing was way over powered by his clothing.

We got back to see McSoothy and she apologized for the trashy teenager. We exchanged some conversation and she said in wonderfully sarcastic tone, "And he's going to be a daddy!" I remarked back how heart warming it was that a douche bag* like that can parent and me and so many others have to go through infertility. (From what I picked up in the waiting room his girlfriend was being examined by McSoothy and he must have gotten tossed out). Let's just hope he puts real shoes on his kid next December. But, I love McSoothy, and her comment and the tone she used endears her more to me. And DH ended up really liking her too. It would be hard not to. That was the most exciting part of the appointment.

We asked about perineal massaging. She isn't really concerned about us doing it and says she still has a really good track record with couples that never do it. She does a lot of massaging herself and emphasizes controlled pushing, so hopefully I'll come out ok, but we will probably still do some home massaging when we get closer (not looking forward to that).

She is also going to try to help me find a doula. She knows a couple other people she can call, so we shall see, but she did not think the zero experience doula was a good idea.

And I can look forward to getting my group b screening next appointment (ick)... McSoothy will finally get to go where a whole bunch of other people have been in the last year.

And this morning was MFM Wednesday, of course. The baby got measured again today and is at 6lb 1oz and the 85%ile. He's been pretty consistent. I think if I go to 40 I can expect a 9lb baby. AFI=11 and perfect BPP again.

He was completely asleep for the NST. They kept telling me to drink water and I was all, "I AM! People I've drank 1L in the last 15 minutes and if I do more, I'll puke!" But he woke up at the end and did enough to satisfy.

Well, Merry Christmas to whoever made it this far. I hope you get what you want for Christmas, and I hope those TTCing can find some joy in the holiday season and have merrier things to look forward to next year!

*I cannot wait until my child can say douche bag.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Coming out

Thanks for the advice on the doula situation. I'm still working on it, but this task has been extremely frustrating and I have been working on it for several months now, so it's getting old too.

You all know I'm a bit of a freak when it comes to revealing my pregnancy to people. You'd think at 33 weeks I would be over it, but alas, I am not. I still haven't told most of my college and high school friends that I am pregnant yet.

Weird right? Well, I don't live around many any of them. And I'm a terrible communicator. And I just didn't like mentioning it to anyone.

Anyhow, I had DH take a belly shot of me in front of the tree the other day and put it up as my FB profile pic.

I know, not cool, BUT, as far as the friends that I care about goes, they all either already have kids or aren't married yet (remember I'm only 26). So, I'm not really worried about causing an infertile to break down somewhere from seeing it. And at least I didn't put up some cheesy status update like, "Being Pregnant is the BEST THING EVER!"

I really doubt that anyone will even notice. Or if they do, they might be wondering if I'm pregnant or just really proud of my fat.

But there are a few people that have noticed that I'm pregnant. We we walking out of church and someone yelled at me across the parking lot asking when the baby was due and saying they were wondering when I was going to show up with one. It was weird because (a) I didn't know her, (b) we were at a different mass than we normally go to, so I'm really surprised that anyone even realized that we were regular parishioners there.

But then we did the weekly grocery shopping and ran into a couple that we don't know but do normally sit by during mass and she said something to me about how they were all wondering if I had the baby since we didn't come to mass last night (we were at Christmas with DH's family).

So I wonder if they are taking bets.

I have created a general policy that if some random person asks me when I'm due, I say a shorter time period than it actually is because some lady asked me if I was sure it wasn't twins the other day when I said I still had 8 weeks left. I quickly turned around and mumbled "Rude Bitch" loudly as I walked away. I'd rather not have to do that again, so I just lie.

But these church people see me every week, so I can't lie. And they apparently all think that I'm due any day now.

Ok, whatever, he'll come when he comes and they can all stop their guessing then.

Anyhow, please enjoy some holiday kitty tor.ture!

Friday, December 18, 2009

I need advice!

I don't have time to do a long post on this but I am having a lot of trouble finding a doula.

Right now I'm talking to a brand new doula and I'm worried that she's the only person I will find with availability.

She has never given birth herself and has only attended one labor during her doula training... but has read EVERY BOOK! (note the thick sarcasm at the end there)

We got disconnected last night and we never got to her fee or anything. I imagine she will ask ~$300.

The whole point of getting a doula for me was to have someone there that knew what they were doing, and had experience, and could provide reassurance. I worry that hiring her will be not helpful, or a waste, or maybe even annoying. The labor process is scary to me, I was hoping this would help to take some of the fear out of it.

But it may come down to her or nothing! Is it better to have a potentially useless doula over nothing?

And I'm really down a creek without a paddle here. I have no female relatives or friends that I would want or trust to fill this role for me. I feel really alone.

Anyone got an opinion? What would you do?

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

33 weeks

Is it 33 weeks already? That doesn't seem right.

Work is crazy right now... so busy and I've got a lot of client meetings lined up for some reason. Um, you all know I'm pregnant right? Do you really want me traveling 3 hours at 37 weeks?! This isn't going to work out.

But the baby is just awesome lately. He just moves so much, it's just incredible. I pull up my blanket at night and see it popping around on me. And he's just an ace at BPP's. He's always practice breathing so it seems and movement has been great. We got another look at his hair today and it's longer and the tech was laughing because it was standing straight up (or really down, since he's head down). The AFI was at 17 today, which is high compared to what we've been measuring, but it's completely normal.

Oh, and I met with the lactation consultant. I felt really pushed to get out of there from myself... I needed to get back to work and she didn't have a clock on the wall so I was worried about how long I'd been there. I really wish I'd felt like I had more time, because there were a couple of things I wanted to do, like get a nursing bra... I am still in boob induced back pain hell over here. I got some granny bras the other day and one was bothering me so much Tuesday I had to put on a sweater and ditch the bra by midday... braless at work, how embarrassing, but it was that bad. I have given up at this point and am wearing my sleep bras during the day. She also had a Moby wrap. I'd like to try one but I'm worried that it won't fit, which seems ridiculous because they are 5 or 6 yards long or something, but the vidoes on the internet show slim women tying them without a lot of excess and I'm afraid I wouldn't have enough.

So I didn't get to try a bra or Moby wrap be we did talk a lot about the important stuff. I learned a few things but it seems like the take home message is 'Call me ASAP if it hurts and keep some fenugreek on hand, but otherwise we won't worry about supply issues until we know you have one'. She gave me a big packet of information and a pair of free reusable nursing pads. And I learned she is contracted with the hospital I'm delivering at, so if I need help then, she will come. I was really surprised that we didn't really talk about positioning or practice the holds or anything. I guess she's not worried.

The surprising thing I've been finding out about breast feeding lately is how many women I know that did it with no problem. You always hear from the people that have issues and just assume that nearly everyone that does it must just be toughing it out, but lately I've been hearing the good stories. Those women really need to share more. And get this, I was breastfed. I didn't know that at all. My mom could barely stop smoking and drinking (just a little) when she was pregnant with me, I just assumed that she gave me formula. Nope. And she didn't have any problems until she had to pump for work and the pumps didn't work for her, so she had to quit. Well that makes me feel better, but I wish she would have shared that earlier.

Our 4th anniversary is tomorrow. We are going to eat a quick dinner out (because no one should have to do dishes on their anniversary) and then go home and do Christmas preparations. We got our tree over the weekend, but haven't even gotten out the ornaments for it yet and it's the same with the rest of the decorations. And I need to make some cookies and candy for Christmas with the in-laws this weekend. So we are planning on just enjoying the season tomorrow night, which sounds pretty nice right now.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Status unchanged

I took my 32 week GTT on Thursday and got a voicemail from my nurse late Friday. I still do not have GD, but I am still a little anemic.

It's kinda funny, because I completely forgot that I was a little anemic the first go around. The other funny thing is I don't feel anemic at all (which makes me think the times that I have felt anemic I was REALLY low). I've actually had more energy to stay up later the last month or so and I don't get too tired during the day... just a bit after lunch.

The only thing is she didn't tell me anything to do about it. I looked at the iron supplements at the store the other day and decided against it. I don't want to over do it and end up feeling icky and constipated. I guess I've been anemic this long, a few more days won't hurt. If they don't return my call I will ask my MFM on Wednesday.

But I was thinking back to my learning the vegetarian food pyramid and molasses was always on it and partially for the iron in it. I never eat molasses, but today I made some (frozen) biscuits for breakfast and put some molasses on one. ICK! NASTY! NOT WORTH IT. It tasted like soy sauce and malt. I'll skip that and pour myself some fortified cereal thank you very much.

In other news, we got our Christmas tree yesterday. We go out to this really cool farm that hauls you over the river and through the woods while hanging on the side of a trailer to tree fields to cut down your tree... but seeing how that isn't the most practical thing when preggo, we cheated and picked one of the imported trees at the lodge. We agreed that it was the the best thing to do, but not nearly as fun.

And we thought the cats might go nuts seeing how they've never even touched a tree before but they have been very reserved and well behaved so far. But my money is on it that Ambrosia will climb the tree before this is all done. But I'm not worried, we got this awesome tree stand (there is a little video that plays lower right corner) 3 years ago after several downed trees and two other failed stands. Ain't no cat bringing down this tree. If you have trouble keeping your tree upright, trust me, this is your stand.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

32 weeks

Although I'm still rather snotty, I feel like I'm getting over this cold faster than I have ever gotten over a cold. That's weird, right?

I had my appointment with McSoothy yesterday. Things are good except I kinda ballooned... my weight went up quite a bit (some of it from swelling issues) and my blood pressure was a bit higher than normal. Those can be concerning signs, but nothing was so bad that McSoothy was terribly worried.

My MFM appointment almost did not happen because of the crappy weather today. I called at 7:30 to cancel my 7:30 (they don't answer the phone until 7:30, so I couldn't have called earlier) because the roads were partly covered and the wind was terrible. Last year I risked even worse conditions trying to get pregnant, but it's not worth it now. I got the appointment rescheduled for couple hours later after the roads were in better shape. (But the kitties got to go out into the snow on the back deck for the first time! Bliss didn't like it but Ambrosia is too much of a nature girl and actually stayed outside for awhile.)

BPP and NST were great. AFI=11. He is doing lots of practice breathing these days which is great. And he's moving a ton, and he's so big that he really makes my whole belly shake and pop when he moves. It's really entertaining to me and the best parts of my day.

I reported the swelling and blood pressure to my MFM today. Even though my blood pressure is high for me, it's nothing like what he's used to seeing and wasn't concerned a bit. And he showed me how reflexes differ with preecclamptic women and popped my knee and I wasn't doing any of the stuff he was talking about. He did recommend to me to put up my feet more and take luke warm baths when possible to help the fluid drain.

And the whine... my upper back REALLY hurts. I think it's my boobs. They really haven't grown that much larger, but they are different and my bras are not doing the trick. I just need to hold out for one more week when I meet the lactation consultant. They sell nursing bras at her pharmacy and she said she could help me. I'm getting desperate here.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Sick and stuff

Remember awhile ago when I was complaining about how I didn't want to go visit DH's family because someone is always sick. Well, we were with them for Thanksgiving and the baptism and DH's aunt sounded terrible. But she insisted that is wasn't anything and she wouldn't be around anyone if it was. It was just some sinuses and wasn't a sinus infection and was just in her head. Except for the fact that she was coughing like crazy and couldn't even talk at times it was so bad.

Do you know what that is called? A HEAD COLD. Know what I got now? A HEAD COLD. I knew this would happen.

Yeah, and I'm pissed off about it. I'm blaming her 100% for it (even though I suppose it could have come from someone else, but not likely). I haven't had any infections in the last year and wash my hands like crazy and follow up with hand sanitizer. I'm a little OCD, but starting late Monday my throat starts to get a little scratchy. Then by late Tuesday I'm sneezing and by Wednesday I can't breathe.

It was so bad Thursday night I had to call last minute and cancel for one of my client's Christmas parties, but I was miserable. And I was so desperate that I sent DH out at 8pm to get me some benadryl.

Every trash can in the house is filled with my nasty used tissues and the end of my nose is all rough and scratchy for constant blowing. It's gross.

But, I am doing better, I think. I have an appointment with McSoothy on Tuesday and will see what she thinks.

I really hate getting colds because it feels like I hang on to them forever... at least a month and sometimes 2 months. I'm really trying to baby it with the benadryl so that it hopefully goes away quickly.

Oh well, it could be worse, last Thanksgiving the whole family got food poisoning (luckily we weren't there and with my family instead).

In other news, PETCO was running a special to get 20% off single items the other day and we got the brilliant idea to get another scratch post. We have one for up stairs and one for down. The upstairs one is made of 1ft sections that screw together and I was thinking if we bought another one of those posts we could put all the sections together and make a 3ft post into a 6ft post!!!

Safe, probably not.

Practical, definitely not.

Fun, YES!

The cats love it, we will probably break them apart eventually, but it's just too much fun for now.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

31 weeks

He has hair! Add hair to the list of things I didn't know they could see on a u/s. I had quite a bit of hair when I was born... I don't think DH did, but he was a month early too. However, I haven't really had any heartburn and research has shown that the old wive's tale about heart burn actually does correlate to more hair, but I haven't had any... so I guess we shall see what comes out.

BBP and NST were perfect. AFI was 13 (perfect, and consistent).

He went down in percentile for size. He's only at the 80th now and measures to be 4.5lbs. No complaints here.

His activity levels really do change a lot. Seems like he has a really active couple of days and then he has to rest up for the next several days.

This morning he woke up after I went to the bathroom and drank some water at 3am (it's the water that does it every time) and started going to town just like last week. I was worried I'd have a sleeping baby for the BPP and NST again, so I tried to soothe him back to sleep. I put down the foot of my recliner and rocked and rubbed my belly until he quit and it seemed to work. I had an active baby for my tests today. (The shower also seems to put him to sleep, but I wasn't about to take a shower at 3am.)

I need to figure out my FSA contribution. I'm switching insurance* and my costs for delivery should only be $500 and my maternity care is completely covered so that is easy and a lot cheaper than it would have been with my old plan. I have no idea what meds will cost and particularly if I need start BCPs again. Breast pumps are covered as long as they are medically necessary and I think I can probably get McSoothy to help me out there. I don't think I can submit doula costs... doulas are covered, but they have to be "licensed health care professional who renders medical care" or something (and DONA certification doesn't seem to count) and I'm worried that one might not come back in my favor. Add in a couple hundred for drs. office copayments.

I also called a lactation consultant today to see what her services would cost for FSA planning. This is pretty awesome: she's free for in office appointments. She works for a local pharmacy and you pay nothing as long as you visit her in office. McSoothy has recommended her says if there's a way, she'll find it. And if I want her to come to my home, it's only $50. Still a pretty good deal. She says new moms will normally have one in home and then follow up in office if necessary. So I don't really need to add much to my FSA for that. And I have a prenatal appointment set up for the 16th. I'm pretty anxious about breastfeeding (since my body sucks at everything else it's suppose to do) so I'm hoping that this will help to ease some of my anxiety.

So I don't really have a good feel for how much I will spend on medical bills next year, but I'm thinking an even $1000 ought to cover it and I can stock pile advil or go get some acupuncture for fun at the end of the year if I don't use it all.

I can deduct child care expenses too, but I'm going to wait until he's born to start taking those and file for a change (which should be allowed) because I still don't know what we are doing for child care.

*You all are going to LOVE this. I have been harassing DH to look at his insurance plan (with the kid coming I figure we should all get on the same plan since adding the kid will raise premiums anyhow). He finally looks and discovers he has other options than just the FepBlue Basic and Standard (DH is a Fed employee). One option is pretty good, and get this, IT COVERS INFERTILITY!!! Infact, it has really good infertility coverage! Drugs, IUI's, u/s, and 3 IVF cycles and more if you have a live birth... about the only thing it doesn't cover is a surrogate, but it will pay for the egg retrieval and transfer if you use one. We didn't spend that much on IF, but it could have saved me a couple thousand! Not to mention the hours and hours worrying about how we would pay for IVF if it came to that (that's probably the part that gets to me the most). So we are switching to this plan (not just for the IF coverage, it's also just a really good plan and the cheapest option we have). I'm not angry at DH for not learning about this earlier, but somewhere in the back of my mind it's eats at me just a little.