Friday, July 30, 2010

No Really, I'm Great

So, whenever people ask me how I'm feeling, I have a moment of shock as I wonder what about me seems like I'm other than great. I've known and heard about people who had truly horrible symptoms like hives and persistent sickness. I've heard about instances where mother or child died. So, I feel honor-bound to reply that I'm feeling great.

Now, don't get that confused with normal. I do not feel normal. I'm carrying around more weight than ever before. Clothes don't fit how I think they should. I have extra blood pumping through my system, so I get winded on stairs more so than ever before. I have leg cramps at night. Increasingly, I find it hard to get comfortable when sleeping. I have to go to the bathroom frequently. My nose runs more than it used to. My lips are really dry.

But, that doesn't mean I feel bad. I understand all those things are pretty normal symptoms of pregnancy. I'm in good health. Potus is moving around, so I believe he/she is in good health. A brush with indigestion has made me super glad it was only a brush and has not become persistent. I have my appetite. I can keep things down. I'm mobile and haven't had to curtail my extracurricular activities at all. Granted, I walk slower now and my acne hasn't gone away like I'd hoped, but I haven't noticed stretch marks either.

So, please excuse me when I list any of my minor maladies. I'm just trying to share what symptoms I do have because they're new to me and I think some of you might be interested. I'm not really complaining. I'm glad I feel so good. I feel truly fortunate... Great, even.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Week 22

So, says Potus is about the size of a spaghetti squash. Although I was told at the five month appointment that we're a little smaller than average, so maybe Potus is a medium zucchini....

Nothing much to report this week. I've gained between 13 and 15 pounds. Near as I can figure it's all in blood and baby. Haven't noticed anything else growing. I'm using the Snoogle pillow which helps me stay on my side a little bit at night, but it creates almost too much space between my legs and I've been getting calf cramps almost every night. So, I've switched it around so most of the pillow is at my back and that has helped. Potus is getting more active, or else bigger, so I feel the kicking more (like now).

I've got all the paperwork in motion to transfer over to Dr. W2. Another couple weeks and we go for the 6 month appointment with ML. I'm kind of curious to see the difference in practice method. I've stopped reading Born in the USA and have decided to pick up What to Expect again. Dr. W1 made a comment early on when I mentioned reading it that I, "must know it all then." So, thinking I'd just worry myself with all the things that could go wrong, I stopped. But, looking back, I should have seen it as an indication of Dr. W1's preference for ignorant patients. Educated patients might challenge decisions.

I went over to N's house tonight to review the first batch of baby quilt fabric options. Most were pretty good. The greens might be a little tricky because the walls are a light true green and yellow greens are pretty popular right now. Some of the greens looked almost yellow or just plain clashed next to the walls.

I traveled into the City yesterday to sit in on the second interview of the favored candidate. They surprised me though and talked to her without me for about 20 minutes and then sent me in alone to discuss the realities of the job so she'd really know what she was getting into. For over an hour. P was concerned to hear about that since I have no HR training, but we seriously stayed on topic and talked just about her experience and what she could anticipate at our company. She seems like a good fit and has strengths I don't, so she'll be able to grow more in her own way there. If she wanted to, I'm sure she could grow into a Business Development role eventually.

Regardless, they're going to continue to cross train the new admin assistant and another staff member in Chicago to do some of the prospect prep so they'll stay out of the current predicament (having only one person to do typical prospects and one person to do government prospects). They sent the applicant an offer today, so hopefully they'll hear back soon. They want her to start at the beginning of September since she's already familiar with the current duties, and mostly just has to learn our history and the particular way we do things. She'd train a month locally and then work the second month in the City with me as support here just in case. I plan to stop work after the first week in November. It's kind of disconcerting planning your own obsolescence.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Choosing a Seat

Yesterday, my MiL and I went to the baby mecca Babies R Us. Mostly, I was just interested in finding a Snoogle pillow. I've been trying to sleep on my left side, but I keep waking up on my back. So, I figured the Snoogle might make it more difficult to do that. (After one night of use, it does seem to help.) However, while we were there, we looked up a few of the items on the registry to see if I could check some of them out in person. Unfortunately, a lot of the bigger items weren't available in the store. So, for the infant seat, high chair, and stroller I'm required to rely on other people's reviews. I have used a friend's BOB stroller and it was very nice to maneuver. And, I did get to sit in the glider options. I decided to register for one of the chairs there (instead of the one at Land of Nod), although you're only allowed to register for the in-stock fabric. I preferred the coffee velvet for it's versatility down the road, but the stocked oatmeal chenille is very nice and super soft too.

I'm having a bit of a dilemma choosing a high chair. I realize it'll be almost a year before I need one, but I'm still looking. I had picked out the Tripp Trapp, but my mom told me about a different model, the HiLo, that is also pretty versatile and a slight bit less expensive. The primary differences are that the Tripp Trapp has no tray and can seat a baby to an adult. The HiLo has a tray and only two seating options, high chair or booster. If anyone has opinions, let me know.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Consultation Outcome

So a few of you have asked what happened at the consultation yesterday. Here's the skinny.

We made an appointment for a fifteen minute lunchtime free consultation with Dr. W2 and the midwife. We had to wait for about 10 minutes and ended up running about 45 minutes with the midwife and another 5 or so with the doctor. There is one other doctor with the practice, but everything I've heard about her was positive, so I wasn't too concerned. Dr. W2 was a bit of a mixed bag, so I was curious to see for myself if he was actually a jerk or merely a bit introverted.

I liked the midwife very much. She seemed very candid and honestly helpful. She didn't assume we'd choose them and gave me a lot of useful information about the process, the way they operate and some of their general practices. It sounds like they may differ from a few practices I'm inclined to favor, but I haven't finished my research and they sounded like the general practice philosophy is low intervention and they are open to listening to your views and wishes. Both mentioned that they try to follow the mothers' wishes and will discuss changes with her if they find they need to deviate.

The doctor was quiet but seemed genuinely to care about women and their care. I didn't talk to him for long, but I was encouraged to learn that he was trained osteopathically.

So, I'm going to finish reviewing the literature they gave me this weekend. Chances are I'll give them a call Monday to find out what's involved in switching over. I'm a little concerned about the fees since we've already paid a certain amount to Dr. W. Guess we'll find out.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


Well, I'm currently shopping for a new doctor. I've decided I'm not comfortable with Dr. W anymore. Strangely enough, we're going for a consultation tomorrow with a different Dr. W and his midwife. I'm looking for a less interventionist approach and a doctor who will listen to my wishes instead of belittling things I find important. So, anyone who knows any local midwives or docs who might fit the bill, let me know. I've got 3 weeks or so till my next scheduled appointment.

At Long Last - Ultrasound Pics

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Week 21

This week marks edging over the halfway mark. Tomorrow, we are supposed to go for our rescheduled ultrasound. I have a list of questions that are only slightly confrontational for my doctor. After getting to chapter 3 in Born in the USA, I'm beginning to feel very defensive about my wishes. I thought telling my doctor I was vegetarian was going to be a battle, but I'm a little afraid I'll ask my questions, get the right answers and then end up getting the works (inducement, epidural, cesarean, and supplemented baby). There's a nice little tongue-in-cheek chart in the book that indicates the more assertive a mother is about having a natural birth, the more a doctor is inclined to intrude on the birth and deny that experience. I realize this may not always be the case. However, I keep flashing back to my experience when I told Dr. W my prenatal vitamin didn't have folic acid and gave him the sheet from Dr. Furhman's website explaining why. He dismissed it out of hand and basically ordered me to supplement with folic acid. That wasn't a major battle, but if it indicates how my concerns will be treated, I may be in the market for another doctor soon.

Basically, I'm interested in how he handles deliveries since he's a single doctor practice. I want to know his rate of cesareans vs. vaginal births, whether he uses Cytotec for inducing labor, and how he feels about working with doulas or midwives. I have some concerns about a couple of the local hospital's policies, such as no videotaping in delivery, and no VBAC (vaginal births after cesarean). It seems to indicate an environment that's not very open to natural birthing and is suspicious of lawsuits. After talking with one of P's coworker's wives today at length, I'm beginning to feel like the hospital down the road may be a better fit. They have more versatile birthing rooms, a volunteer doula program, and seem more open to providing customized care based on the patient's wishes. The lady I spoke with today also was using an OB practice that is all female, has three partners, and staffs a midwife and lactation consultant. That alone seems to indicate more flexibility with less invasive methods.

So, step one is going to our appointment tomorrow and talking to Dr. W. Next, we'll tour both hospitals. And, if I really feel the local option we currently plan on using just doesn't make me comfortable, then I'll make an appointment at the practice down the road.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Food for Thought

I'll keep this brief so I can get to bed at a reasonable hour. I find I've been sleeping later, so I'm trying to get to bed earlier.

Ultrasound. For those of you wondering, our appointment was moved to this week. The tech called in sick on Wednesday. And, if he/she had the 24 hour flu that I've heard is going around, then I'm glad to reschedule. A few coworkers have had it, and I will gladly skip that malady.

P found a podcast on iTunes because he did a lot of driving this weekend to pick up his dad from a bike ride. I've listened to a couple episodes of "Progressive Parenting" and am already disappointed that they seem to have discontinued posting new episodes. However, based on the website, the show is still on the radio in Fresno, so maybe I can find newer episodes. One of the episodes talked about needing to be your own informed advocate in the delivery room because of some of the convenience issues (induction and c-sections) associated with modern delivery. Two of the main concerns are drastic increase in c-sections and inductions since 1990 to result in a more convenient schedule for overworked OBs and one of the primary drugs used in inductions which is not FDA approved for use in pregnant women. One of the speakers (Mansard Wagner) has a couple of books, one of which (Born in the USA) I've already downloaded to my phone for further reading.

Needless to say, I already have a few questions for my OB for our next appointment. I hope he doesn't disappoint because I really don't want to have to look for alternate healthcare. However, I also don't want my delivery to be any more stressful than it needs to be.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Week 20

Today makes 5 months officially. We're scheduled for our ultrasound tomorrow morning. It'll be very exciting to finally see an image of Potus. We have decided we definitely are going to keep the gender a surprise. We see no reason to find out. We plan to keep Potus no matter what :)

So, I've noticed I have been getting short of breath lately. Especially climbing stairs. The leg cramps haven't bothered me much lately. I've learned to not point my feet when I stretch in bed just before taking the dogs out. Haven't experienced heartburn or indigestion much, but I understand that's a possibility. Orange juice seemed to trigger a little heartburn, so I pretty much avoid it now. I had some the other day mixed with club soda and it seemed to mellow the acid enough.

I ran some of the nursery decorations by one of my interior design colleagues today and she seemed excited by some of the pieces and the color scheme. I think I'll try to make some headway on the mobile and the wall art this weekend.

Check back soon for an image of the ultrasound.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Nursery Decor

Friday, I made the mistake of picking up the CB2 and Crate and Barrel catalogs to flip through. Nursery decor was on my mind because one of my coworkers had sent me a link with ideas for frugal design. It seems that we're trucking right along toward our due date, so I feel the need to start preparing a little more.

Although the room is relatively small, it seems you can "spend" a lot while planning to outfit it. We've got the major furniture planned due to P's designs, so I picked out a few accessories that while individually reasonable, added up as a group. I'm working on ideas to creatively recreate the look without spending all the cash. I made a trip to Hobby Lobby yesterday for some supplies for a mobile and wall art. For about $30, I think we can knock off the $200 I could have spent. I'll see if I can talk P into helping me with some of the prep. We'll post the results later.

Right now, I'm leaning toward a brighter palette than the green, white and neutral browns I was planning before. Crate and Barrel's seasonal palette is green (clover or olive), peacock blue, and poppy orange. I'm thinking I'll use the existing green walls (see previous post) and accent with the blue and orange. Should make for a vibrant but not overly busy room for Potus.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Week 19 and Furniture

I love the picture at this week. According to them, Potus is a little cramped with his/her ankles up around his/her ears. It looks a little uncomfortable. By the way, for those of you who wonder who/what Potus is, it's our pet name for the baby. If you're like me, you'll need it explained that it stands for President of the United States. No one can say we don't aim high....

No symptoms this week to speak of. I'm just winded a little easier and having a few round ligament pains. My skin is also being unfriendly, but that could be unrelated to Potus. I have noticed my hair and nails seem to be growing a little more than usual. The nails I'm happy with. The hair, not so much. Apparently, I'm a little behind schedule on my most recent trim. However, this week, I finally succumbed to the free issue of Glamour I'm getting for some reason. I looked inside and found a couple hair styles I'm contemplating. One is a more cleaned up blunt version of what I've got, with bangs. The other is Carey Mulligan's style. Still trying to decide if I can go that short again. I've noticed she wears pretty heavy eye makeup with it to stay feminine looking. Eye makeup isn't really something I can manage on a regular basis, so I fear I'll look more like a pregnant teenage boy. The daily maintenance is very appealing though.

In other news, P finally finished the designs for the crib and changing table. They are going to be cherry with walnut. Sounds like a dessert, huh? Should be very unique. The crib will have a static frame, but the mattress is adjustable. The changing table went from a stairstep design with an optional hutch to just a regular lo-boy dresser. It was determined in an informal poll that the scale of the hutch was just too overwhelming for the room and children's furniture in general. And, I thought the stairstep dresser would look weird in a few years' time by itself.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Baby Shower #1 Pics

I was emailed pictures last night from the baby shower and am convinced the camera is broken. C or Mom, you might want to look into that. I'm not sure whose camera it was. It might make an art student pretty happy, though. Anyhow, here are a couple pictures of some of the loot. Apparently a few people got a monkey vibe. And, it's some awfully cute stuff. There's also a painting from Dawn, who went the extra mile by creating original artwork for the birdie themed room. And lastly, a picture of the boys, Zeus and Sam, enjoying the baby shower.

The Week 19 Update will post tomorrow.