Friday, January 1, 2010

B-Day December 26, 2009 - And now the details...

December 25, Christmas morning...after a night full of family, friends, an awesome dinner and a huge mountain of gifts flying everywhere on Christmas Eve night, T and I woke up slowly and groggily.  Even Tay, at 5 years old, wasn't already up sneaking a peak at what Santa left her.  I got up first and went to the bathroom for a quick pee break.  On the way out, I noticed a spot on my pants.  It was very wet, about 3" in diameter, clear and odorless.  Yes, I checked the smell.  I had to make sure I hadn't peed on myself or something.  Hey, it's common in pregnant women!!

I showed T the spot and asked him what he thought.  He said that he thought maybe my water broke or leaked.  I was like, hmmm.  I don't know.  I was still thinking that maybe all that leaked was a bit of my bladder.  But I was 3 days past my due date and it didn't smell like pee.  He suggested, and I agreed, that I should call my doctor (or the one that was on duty for my doc while Hutch was on vacation) and go into the hospital to have it checked out.  We both knew from our massive amounts of research that, if your water does break or is ruptured in any way, delivery needs to take place within 24 hours to help alleviate any concerns for infection.

But, before we headed out across town, we woke Tay up and told her Santa had been here.  She was able to have a somewhat normal, exciting Christmas morning opening gifts and playing with her new toys.  T and I both took showers and then we finally left the house around lunch time to head to the hospital.  Neither of us had any breakfast but we figured we could eat after our visit if it was all a false alarm - which I really thought it would be.

We made it to the hospital around 12:30 - right around lunch time - and I got checked in and directed to the labor and delivery area of the hospital.  I had to leave T and Tay behind since children aren't allowed in that area due to the ridiculous hype of swine flu.  I walked back through the maze of halls and noticed that some of the lights were still turned off and there were a lot of empty rooms.  I guess a lot of people not only take vacation time around the holidays, they also don't have babies. 

I finally made it to the nurses station after being buzzed through several doors and making several turns.  Typically they would have examined me in triage to see if it was the real thing or not before assigning me to an L&D room but there was some sort of something going on with triage so they decided to examine me in the L&D room directly across from the nurses station.  I was directed to undress from the waist down and was then explained the procedure to determine if, indeed, my water had broken or not.  It is basically a pap smear type examination where they obtain a couple of swabs and then investigate the fluid under a microscope.  According to the nurse, the cells of amniotic fluid are shaped like snowflakes which will determine if my water leaked or if it was just pee all along.

After she swabbed the deck, she did a quick internal and discovered that I was only 1 cm but that my cervix was very thin.  She left to look under the microscope and I laid in the room by myself listening to my stomach growl and wonder what would be open for lunch on Christmas Day for when we were told to go home and get a hold of my bladder!

She returned in what seemed like forever and said, welp, that definitely is amniotic fluid.  I just looked at her, waiting for her to say "go ahead and get dressed.  It isn't time yet."  So, since she didn't follow up her observation with the response I was expecting, I decided to take the next step.  I said, so what does that mean?  She said, that means you are staying here.  We are admitting you.  I think I literally heard myself gulp out loud.  I asked, what is the next step?  She said that they would be starting me on Pitocin to get my labor going.  I think I was still in disbelief so I just laid there as she took my information - answering the questions from my subconscious versus my conscious brain.

When she was done with her questions, I asked her if she could let my husband know since he was out in the waiting room with his daughter.  She said she would, then I realized it might be easier for me to just text him.  All I knew is that I needed him to get back to me as soon as possible.  I noticed that I was slightly trembling but that I wasn't all that cold.  It was from nerves and anxiety and I was there without my security blanket, my rock.  I needed T to get back there as soon as possible.

There was a lot of drama surrounding Tay being able to come back to see me.  It was against the new "swine flu" rules to have a child come back to L&D (or anywhere in the hospital other than the main lobby).  I was very upset because we really wanted her to be able to visit with me before and after.  After a lot of convincing, they finally allowed Tay to come back wearing a mask and a special badge.  She was so sweet.  She held my hand as they were giving me my IV.  She rubbed the inside of my hand and asked me if it hurt.  She was so sweet and just looked at me like she loved me so much.  It melted my heart and made me want her to stay even more.


But, eventually, she had to leave with Nona to get some food and to be out of L&D before things really started rolling.  And it is probably a good thing she did.  I started feeling contractions but they weren't too bad at first.  Just period like cramps, nothing to unbearable.  Although there was a clock right in front of me, the hands on the clock might as well have been spinning uncontrollably around the face.  I do know that, around dinner time, I was checked again and still at 1 cm.  The Pitocin was bumped up and continued to be bumped up every time I was checked because my cervix just wasn't dilating.

Then things started changing.  The simple period like cramps evolved to a feeling of someone stabbing me with a dagger in my pelvis.  It hurt so bad that, during every contraction, I was nauseous and had a serious urge to "go to the bathroom".  Which I did do and had another contraction in the bathroom that made me think I was going to deliver in the toilet. 

I was given my epidural but the pain continued.  The very nice anasthesiologist stayed in the room to see how the epidural was initially progressing.  She told me it would take about 15 or 20 minutes for it to really kick in.  This was one time that the clock meant a lot to me!!  I stared at the second hand as it made it's way around.  Now time was standing still and my pain was still there.  It only intensified when she left and we had to call her back again to bump up the amount.  I was feeling incredible pressure in my pelvic area and that constant stabbing pain.

While waiting for my increase, I vomited the only meal I had had all day - a cherry popsicle.  The nurse checked me again - an hour after being at 1 cm - and I was suddenly at 8!!  What??  Then, about 30 to 45 minutes later, she checked me again and I was fully dilated!  I couldn't believe it.  I don't think anyone could believe it.  The nurse decided to have me do some pratice pushes while they called Hutch's backup doctor (who, by the way, was VERY nice.  She stopped by earlier in the day to introduce herself to me since I had never met her).  T grabbed one knee, she grabbed the other and then we waited for the next contraction.  We didn't have to wait very long.  Deep breath in, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, let it out...and deep breath in...this repeated three times per contraction.

At one point, T started feeling a bit faint.  It wasn't from being queasy from what was going on, it was from not eating for about 18 hours at that point in addition to not having anything to drink.  But the nurse kinda razzed him a little.  A little too much, in my opinion.  She had another nurse hold my other leg while I continued my pushing.  At one point, the unmentionable happened.  I always feared that it would happen but 'they' are right that you don't care as much when you are in that "position".  If you don't know what 'unmentionable' I speak of, I will leave it unmentioned.

Then I had more practice pushes during my second contraction.  The nurses told me that the head was "right there" and that I was pushing great.  During my third contraction, second practice push, they told me to stop in mid counting.  It wasn't just a casual stop.  It was a STOP!  I guess baby was coming faster than they had expected.  My nurse jumped on the phone to call the doctor to let her know it was time.  I couldn't believe that, just hours before, I was still only 1 cm and now I had a baby on the verge of being born. 

The practice pushes were put on hold until the doctor arrived.  I just laid there in a holding pattern.  When the doctor came into the room, she did so very casually and not too concerned about how quick things were going.  She came over to my lower regions and started to casually reach for her cover up stuff.  While she was pulling latex gloves out of their box, she asked me to give her a push to see how things are going.  So, during the next contraction, I did the deep breath in, head to chest and 1, 2, STOP!!  And that came from the doctor!  She quickly started getting her supplies ready but she wasn't quick enough.  I don't even remember giving any sort of push but I did feel the sudden rush of something happening.  The nurse holding my left leg looked the doc's way and said, here we go!  Sure enough, before I knew it, there was a blue-sih colored baby with arms and legs spread eagle and a good set of lungs!  Everyone - including the nurses - knew that we didn't know what we were having so, while baby was spread eagle in front of us, we all looked in the same spot...

It's a GIRL!

Now, I know everyone knows that I was thinking (and, for a while hoping) it was a boy.  But she was (and is) so beautiful.  All of those thoughts and hopes flew out the window just as quick as our beautiful baby girl was born!  Did I cry?  Did I laugh?  What did I do?  What was my reaction?  I was so shocked, overwhelmed and just in pure shock.   There were no tears, no laughter, but T did say I had a huge smile on my face.  I was incredibly shocked at how fast the delivery happened.  There wasn't the whole "the head is out, stop pushing so we can turn the shoulders, etc."  It was "hey doc turn around" and she was there.  Reality happened quick and before I could figure out what happened. 

 I was still a bit dazed with my new reality as they were checking her out in the warmer.  T was taking pictures and I was being stitched up - only a small tear.  Nothing too bad.  They asked us if she had a name.  She does.  Hayden Grace.  Because of her quick exit, her breathing was a bit labored and very fast.  But that corrected itself within a couple of hours.  She was able to ride with me to the recovery room.  After my epidural wore off a bit and I tried to pee, that is.  I had to keep the IV in my arm until I peed.  I really wanted to get that IV out but I really couldn't pee.  The increased dose of epidural kept me from feeling anything from the waste down - including my bladder.  So the IV had to be capped and kept in until I peed in the recovery room. 

Although the bed in the recovery room was more comfortable than the one in L&D, it was very annoying.  It had some sort of function that made it blow up or deflate in random places at random times.  And those random times included in the middle of the night.  Once in the recovery room, the nurses helped me into the restroom to try and pee.  Success.  IV came out (and the spot still hurts to touch to this day) and, with my legs back under me, I was able to shower and put on a nursing gown that I bought.  I felt like a real person again and it felt great. 

Hayden stayed with us in our room the entire time.  I started breastfeeding in the recovery room since she wasn't up for it in L&D.  OUCH!  That's all I have to say about that.  But I did it and suffered through the pain.  She had a rough night of sleeping and it seemed to be due to gas.  At 4 AM, right when I went to sleep for the first time in 48 hours and T finally got Hayden to sleep, some freaky witch of a nurse barged through our door, turned on all of the flourescent lights and a needle with a vile.  She had come to take my blood.  At 4 AM.  Righteous.  After missing my veins several times, she finally found what she was looking for leaving me with a huge bruise that has turned every color of the rainbow since then. 

We didn't have the best experience with the nurses at the hospital.  Or the hospital itself.  They don't accomodate the dads very well.  There is a small love seat sized sofa for the guys to sleep on and they don't even bring them meals!!  Not that they would want them - I didn't eat even one of their meals.  But it is just the way they pretty much disregard the dads.  T would ask them a question and the nurse would answer his question while looking at me.  Not at him.  We think we got the holiday crew instead of the A Team.  But we were able to leave on Sunday around noon and we couldn't get out of their fast enough!

But Hayden is the best thing that has ever happened to me.  I am not only in love with her, I am obsessed with her!  I find myself staring at her when she sleeps, melting when she looks my way with her beautiful, googly eyes and pretending she is smiling at me when she is really cooking up a good fart.  Oh and this girl can fart!!  And burp.  She will make a good tomboy!  We are becoming a good team with the breastfeeding.  It still is uncomfortable but it is doable.  T is in love with her too and it is sweet to see how comforted she is when she is in his arms. 

I will be starting a new blog designed specifically for Hayden updates.  I want a place where my family can come by and keep up with the amazing progress of my amazing girl.  I will send out an address of the blog sometime soon.

In the meantime, introducing HAYDEN GRACE
December 26, 2009
1:17 AM
7 lbs, 14 oz
21.5 inches




Wednesday, December 23, 2009

40 weeks + 1 day: The Countdown Continues

I can't believe that we are finally here.  The destination.  The moment of truth.  The final countdown.  Yesterday was my "estimated" due date and there is a good reason they put the word "estimated" on the beginning of it.  It is a huge guess as to when things actually will happen.  You can watch your estimated due date come and go, as I have, and only have a few minor contractions and absolutely no other inclination of a baby coming.  Frustrating?  Yes, it certainly can be.  Typical?  Abso-freaking-lutely. 

My Mom made it town last Wednesday - 3 days earlier than her originally scheduled flight - because she kept having a strong feeling that I would be having a baby on the 16th.  Upon her arrival that day, I did start having contractions that were not very comfortable but would go away when I would lie down - the VERY sign that it was false labor.  And the news stayed that way - and still is that way.  No pressure or anything (other than the pressure in my lower regions).  Actually, I sometimes do feel like I am not performing as I should.  That my body just isn't doing what it is supposed to in the right time. 

And then my Dad and SMom came in on Friday.  Still no news, no developments, no nothing.  But a great Mexican meal was consumed and it was great to have my family in town.  Monday, Mom went with us to my doctor's appointment.  We started with a non-stress test which is basically me sitting in a recliner with a couple of gooey pads strapped to my belly.  The monitor shows baby's heartrate on the left hand side and the pressure in my uterus on the right hand side.  You could actually see me having contractions.  Sounds promising, right?  Well, no. 

Next on the appointment agenda was the internal exam.  Since Hutch is on vacation, Jodi, the nurse practitioner, did my internal.  This is where the name Nurse Digger came to be...I swear she could pop my eyeballs out from the inside as far up as she was in my business!!  Unbelieveable.  And oh so uncomfortable!!  After digging around for a bit, she finally determined that I hadn't dilated at all.  Completely sealed up tight! 

Next was the sonogram to make sure there was still ample fluid in the uterus.  Everything looked great and I was happy that Mom got to experience a sonogram of her grandbaby.  That was fun.  I really couldn't make out everything because the monitor was aimed more at Mom and T but they got to see baby blow bubbles and move around.  And, of course, the strong heart pumping away.

I guess I left that appointment a little deflated.  I was hoping for more progress and I got nothing.  But I did get some great reports of a healthy baby and that everything was still looking good.

Today I had another appointment with Nurse Digger.  This time I took my Dad and SMom so that they could experience the excitement of a sonogram.  ND did the internal exam first so that I could then dress again before my Dad came into the room.  Good thinking!  But WOW.  I must say that I really do NOT enjoy internal exams.  They are highly uncomfortable and on the verge of painful.  You know it's bad when they tell you not to worry if you bleed a little after.  YOU THINK??  Holy cow!!

Still no real progress.  She asked me to remind her what she told me at the last visit and I told her it was still next to nothing as far as dilation - maybe a fingertip.  She said I was maybe a 1 this time but still not a lot of progress.  I asked her if she thought that I was going to stay like this until the induction.  She kinda thought so.  So I decided to ask a bunch of questions about the induction.  She said she is going to have us check in on Sunday at 8 PM to start me on some drink that I drink every 2 hours throughout the night.  This is supposed to help my cervix relax and open up.  Then they will prick an IV in me at 5 AM Monday and start the Pitocin.  She estimates baby's arrival for around 3 PM or so Monday afternoon.  But she reminded me that anything can happen before then and reminded me of the symptoms to watch for. 

I put my pants back on and she got me set up in the recliner for the non-stress test.  Then she had Dad, SMom and T come back to hang with me and listen to the heartbeat.  Everything sounded great but baby wasn't moving.  She gave me a juice box and the sugar rush kicked in!  It started moving and I did have one pretty large contraction so I passed the test.

Next we took a look at the sonogram and Dad and SMom got to see the baby blow bubbles and move around like crazy in there.  We didn't get a good profile shot today.  But that's good.  Baby was head down and turned toward my back which is how you want it for delivery.  Side note, ND sure did scare me when she first put the wand on my belly.  She asked if I had felt any big movements.  I said why?  She said she thought the baby wasn't head down anymore.  My heart skipped.  But, after she further investigated, there it was, in diving position.  Please don't scare me with that anymore.  Look first and then ask.

After all that, I actually felt better about the induction.  Almost better than going on my own.  This way, we can have a normal Christmas (and so can Tay) and then we go in Sunday evening when things settle down.  Not to mention that my doctor will be back from vacation with a fresh, cleared head!  I think that I am starting to prefer the Sunday/Monday concept.  I will keep my fingers crossed that it happens before then but won't be disappointed if it doesn't.

Well, I wish I could share more but now we are just in a holding pattern.  But here is the ol' 40 week belly shot (notice my sweet boy down in the corner of the screen):


How your baby's growing:

It's hard to say for sure how big your baby will be, but the average newborn weighs about 7 1/2 pounds (a small pumpkin) and is about 20 inches long. His skull bones are not yet fused, which allows them to overlap a bit if it's a snug fit through the birth canal during labor. This so-called "molding" is the reason your baby's noggin may look a little conehead-ish after birth. Rest assured — it's normal and temporary.

After months of anticipation, your due date rolls around, and... you're still pregnant. It's a frustrating, but common, situation in which to find yourself. You may not be as late as you think, especially if you're relying solely on a due date calculated from the day of your last period because sometimes women ovulate later than expected. Even with reliable dating, some women have prolonged pregnancies for no apparent reason.

You still have a couple of weeks before you'll be considered "post-term." But to be sure your baby is still thriving, your practitioner will schedule you for testing to keep an eye on her if your pregnancy continues.

You may have a biophysical profile (BPP), which consists of an ultrasound to look at your baby's overall movements, breathing movements (movement of her chest muscles and diaphragm), and muscle tone (whether she opens and closes her hand or extends and then flexes her limbs), as well as the amount of amniotic fluid that surrounds her (important because it's a reflection of how well the placenta is supporting your baby).

Fetal heart rate monitoring (called a nonstress test or NST) will generally be done as well — by itself or as part of the BPP. Or, you may have what's known as a modified BPP, which consists of an NST and an ultrasound to assess the amount of amniotic fluid.

If the fetal testing isn't reassuring — the amniotic fluid level is too low, for example — you'll be induced. If there's a serious, urgent problem, you may have an immediate c-section.

Your practitioner will also check your cervix to see if it's "ripening." Its position, how soft it is, how effaced (thinned out) it is, and how dilated (open) it is can all affect when and how your labor is induced. If you don't go into labor on your own, you'll be induced, usually sometime between 41 and 42 weeks.

So next on the list:
Tomorrow: Christmas Eve!  Dinner with the family here at home!
Friday: Merry Christmas to all of you who have been here for me through all these months.  I hope you and your family have a wonderful Christmas!!
Saturday: No plans and that sounds GREAT!
Sunday: If nothing has happened before, 8 PM check into hospital.  I WILL be bringing my laptop!!
Monday: 5 AM Pitocin begins and baby will follow at some point that day.


Dear Cashew,

It is hard to believe that we have been attached at the cord for nine whole months!  Can you believe it?  I feel so close to you it is crazy.  I know what makes you kick the most, squirm the most and I can predict your hiccups!  I feel like we have really gotten to know each other over the months.  I am looking forward to meeting you and letting you stretch your legs a bit.  It is getting so tight in there, I can tell.  You look completely cramped on the sonograms.

It has been so cool having your Louisville grandparents here.  They are SOOO excited to meet you!  They now have been able to hear your strong heartbeat and see you blow bubbles on the ultrasound screen.  I think that has built the excitement even more!  They all want you to come as early as possible so that they can spend more time with you but you will be in all of our arms come Monday.  So it is up to you when you think would be a good day for your birthday and if you need a little help getting out. 

I think I might look through my old posts tonight to see how far along we have come.  There have been some tough days, some good days and just some overwhelming days.  But I have never doubted for a minute how much I love you and how much you are wanted.  Daddy is so excited too and just can't wait to find out who you are and what you look like.  You are so wanted, Cashew.  You are so loved.

Your room is all ready including pictures on the wall.  The best part is the painting that Grandpa did for you!  We found the perfect frame and it is hanging above your crib.  I know you will absolutely love it. 

Goodnight for now (although I can feel that you are awake right now).  Give me a sign if you want to come out on your own.  Otherwise, I will be the one waiting for you with open arms on Monday.  Daddy will be the one right next to me with the huge smile on his face.  You won't be able to miss us!

We love you so much!  See you VERY soon!

Mommy and Daddy

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Girl Who Cried Labor...

So Sunday night I started experiencing "period-like cramps" and a super hardening of my stomach.  Contractions?  I thought so.  Monday...about the same but not as much and only happening in the evening when I finally get off my feet and watch TV. new news.  Last night?  Severe period cramps followed by or accompanied with a tightening in my stomach that took my breath away.  Contractions?  Who the heck knows.  They weren't consistent, they didn't increase in pain and, although they were occasionally 5 minutes apart, they were also up to 15 minutes apart. 

What the heck is going on?  I guess it is false labor or Braxton Hicks.  But they felt so real.  I had T really jumping around here trying to pack a bag for himself and I had Mom up way past her bedtime with the excitement of a potential hour drive to the hospital.  But, as soon as I laid down, nothing.  Well, twinges but nothing like it was when I was sitting up.

I am not too bummed about it personally because I am still only 39 weeks and haven't reached my estimated due date of Dec 22 (Tuesday).  Plus, my Dad isn't here yet and I really want both parents here before the big day.  But I do feel kinda silly for even mentioning these pains last night and getting everyone all excited.  I feel like there is pressure for me to "perform" even though I know that's not the case.  But, when I woke up this morning with just some persisitent, dull, period-like cramping but no tightening, I felt like I was a disappointment to my loving fans. 

Oh well.  It is a waiting game and, luckily, I am not in a huge hurry other than the fact that I would rather not be lying in a hospital bed on Christmas.  But whatever happens is fine and I do know that, on December 28 or 29, there WILL be a Cashew born and both of my parents will be here to experience it!  So at least there is a light at the end of the tunnel.  In the meantime, as usual, I have plenty to do to keep me busy and to keep my mind off of the random aches and pains.  Keep your fingers crossed that Cashew will make a grand exit before we have to go in and smoke him/her out! 

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

39 weeks, 1 day

The countdown continues...

The night before last, I began feeling some interesting cramping that resembled those of my old "friend" Aunt Flo.  They were somewhat mild and was accompanied with my abdomen tightening into a knot and a very heavy feeling.  T and I started keeping track of the regularity and length but they were very inconsistent (ranging from 5 minutes between each one to 20 or 25 minutes).  They lasted most of the evening and into the night but they didn't get more intense or keep me from sleeping.  The next day, other than a few here and there, they were pretty much gone.

However, because of this new development, T was in a whirlwind to get things done around here that was on his list.  He even packed the car for the hospital - just in case.  He was predicting that we would be spending our weekend there.  I, too, thought something was definitely happening and that we should really get ourselves prepared in a big way.

Yesterday we had a doctor's appointment - the usual weekly visit.  The office was busier than I have ever seen it with big bellies everywhere.  I was called back, weighed, blood pressured and told to pee on the all familiar stick.  Everything looked great and we moved on back to the room.  I undressed from the waist down and waited.  I was a little disappointed at this point because I was told that the nurse practitioner, Jodi, would be seeing me instead of Hutch.  If you recall, she was the one who said "it's a girl, right?" at our last visit.  And also the one that dug half way to China checking me last week.  Don't get me wrong.  She is very nice.  But, to be honest, I was really hoping I would get to see my doctor since I had a lot of questions, wanted to schedule an induction (just in case) and since I may not see Hutch again until my induction or after baby - whichever comes first.  Hutch is leaving for Christmas vacation beginning this Friday through the day after Christmas.  Right smack over my due date.  More disappointing news.

Jodi came in and made small talk.  She explained that Hutch had two deliveries that day as well as a load of other patients so she would be seeing us.  I talked to her about the "contractions" I was having the night before so she got right to examining me to see if I had progressed internally any more than my last visit.  She started with the heart doppler to check on Cashew.  Cashew was definitely excited to be there - moving all over the place - and its heartrate ranged from 148 to 160.  I was concerned at, what seemed to me, a huge flux in heartrate.  But Jodi said that it was very normal and sounded great!  She said that baby is just excited and is moving around a lot which increases the heartrate.  I guess it is good that its heart can get back to a resting beat in such good time.

Then, with a snap of the glove, we moved on to the internal exam.  Everything was going ok until she just couldn't feel what she was looking for so she moved ALONG SIDE OF ME to get a better angle and more depth.  YIKES!  I am not exaggerating when I say that I think I felt something up by my daggone belly button!  Easy lady!  She asked me if I was dilated at the last visit - I said only a fingertip.  She said that it was still the same.  But it is very soft and "mushy" in there (sorry if you are eating while reading this) so that is a good sign.  She said that it doesn't mean anything that I am not dilated and that things still could progress to labor this week or it could still be weeks off.  That's when we started talking about scheduling the induction in case I don't go into labor before Christmas.  I really want the baby here while my family is in town.  She said that wouldn't be a problem and that I could schedule it right then.

Something interesting happened while we were talking about scheduling the induction.  She looked at T and said, you are leaving on Thursday, right?  T and I looked at each other confused.  No, we said.  She was like, oh, I thought you were leaving out of town on Thursday.  T and I later talked about this and realized that she DOES have us confused with someone else so that could explain her comments last week about it being a girl.  She said it just as matter of fact as she did that comment.  No worries.  I have my head around a girl and just want a healthy baby (see how I always come back to that - it is the right thing to say).  But it did give us hope that she didn't spoil our surprise. 

On our way out of the office, we scheduled our induction.  We were hoping for the Monday after Christmas but Jodi wasn't sure what Hutch's schedule looked like that day - she already had two births scheduled, but that she would check.  In the meantime, she wanted me to schedule an appointment next week for the usual digging expedition as well as a non-stress test for Cashew.  This is a very simple procedure where I sit in a recliner with a "belt" on that monitors Cashew's heartrate to make sure its not in distress.  So we scheduled that for Tuesday.  They told us they would call us before the end of the day to let us know when our induction would be scheduled.

When we left the appointment, I talked to my Mom who is sure that I will be delivering well before any induction would take place.  She is so concerned about when I might go into labor - and whether or not she will be here for it - she has decided to come into town earlier than her scheduled arrival on the 19th.  So she is coming today!  I am so excited to see her and to start the holiday fun with my family in town!  Just a couple more days and then my Dad will be here!  I am so lucky that I will have my family here for such an important time in my life.  The only thing I worry about is that I can't control what happens when so everyone may get here and have to wait a while before anything happens. 

But something WILL happen no later than the 28th or 29th.  They were able to schedule my induction for Dec 28 - the Monday after Christmas.  I am so glad!!  And, if I do get induced, the other good news is that I will know Hutch will be there.  But there was more on the voice mail that Jodi left me.  She wants me to come in, not just once next week, but twice.  Two non-stress tests.  I am not sure why and plan on finding out more information today when I call them to set up the appointments.  I am assuming there isn't anything "wrong" at this point since she was so happy with the way Cashew's heart sounded.  But I do want to know why I have to do two of these tests.  I will post a follow up when I know more.

Last night I had a couple more of those "contractions" but slept better than I have slept in months!  And I even slept in the bed with T this time instead of the couch.  We both got up this morning before the sun (around 6 AM).  I think we are both anxious to get things done and to keep on moving until we just can't.  He is trying to get his work done and to a good place since he will be taking a vacation after this week is up.  I am just trying to get more done in order to make myself feel better about where we are when Cashew arrives.  Mom will be getting here around 2:15 or 2:30 so I will be picking her up around then and, if she is up for it, heading to Sunflower Market to pick up veggies and fruits.  I am planning on making huge things of salsa - some I will freeze and some I will refrigerate - to hold us over for the next couple of weeks.  Other than that, we have no plans.  Friday my Dad and SMom come into town and we will be taking them to dinner at a local Mexican restaurant.  Saturday we are hoping to make it to Winterhaven which is a neighborhood here in town that is known for their Christmas lights.  They even have wagons that are drawn by Kleidsdale horses.  It is such a neat thing to walk through. 

My patience for this coming to an end is pretty good right now.  In a lot of ways, I am content with being pregnant since I have been for this long!  Of course I want Cashew to come but I have plenty to keep me busy until that time.  And the unknown of caring for a baby is enough to keep me ok with being pregnant a little longer.  The only thing that is huge on the priority list for me is to have my parents here when Cashew is born.  That is VERY important to me and, now that we have an induction scheduled, my mind is at ease.  I do feel a little pressure to "perform" before that time since everyone is coming into town for the big day.  But there is absolutely nothing I can do to force 'Shew out.  It will happen when it happens or we will Pitocin his tiny butt out on the 28th!

I have to remember...and so does everyone else...I am only 39 weeks as of yesterday...

Your baby's waiting to greet the world! He continues to build a layer of fat to help control his body temperature after birth, but it's likely he already measures about 20 inches and weighs a bit over 7 pounds, a mini watermelon. (Boys tend to be slightly heavier than girls.) The outer layers of his skin are sloughing off as new skin forms underneath.

At each of your now-weekly visits, your caregiver will do an abdominal exam to check your baby's growth and position. She might also do an internal exam to see whether your cervix has started ripening: softening, effacing (thinning out), and dilating (opening). But even armed with this information, there's still no way for your caregiver to predict exactly when your baby is coming. If you go past your due date, your caregiver will schedule you for fetal testing (usually a sonogram) after 40 weeks to ensure that it's safe to continue the pregnancy. If you don't go into labor on your own, most practitioners will induce labor when you're between one and two weeks overdue — or sooner if there's an indication that the risk of waiting is greater than the risks of delivering your baby without further delay.

While you're waiting, it's important to continue to pay attention to your baby's movements and let your caregiver know right away if they seem to decrease. Your baby should remain active right up to delivery, and a noticeable slowdown in activity could be a sign of a problem. Also call if you think your water may have broken. Membranes rupture before the beginning of labor in about 8 percent of term pregnancies. Sometimes there's a big gush of fluid, but sometimes there's only a small gush or a slow leak. (Don't try to make the diagnosis yourself. Call even if you only suspect you have a leak.) If you rupture your membranes and don't start contractions on your own, you'll be induced

Coming up next:
Today: Mom comes into town!!
Friday: Dad and SMom come into town!!
Saturday: Winterhaven
Monday: Appt for internal and non-stress test
Tuesday: Official estimated due date
Wednesday: Appt for non-stress test
Thursday: Christmas Eve

Saturday, December 12, 2009

It's Good To Know People!

Update on the drama of the talking nurse practitioner...

My Step-Mother-In-Law is an OB nurse and has been the best resource of information during most of my pregnancy (and before).  We saw her and my Father-In-Law last night at a Christmas concert and I told her about my encounter with the mouthy nurse practitioner and how we felt she may have ruined our surprise (and, at first, our spirits) by being so matter of fact about it being a girl.

The first thing out of Linda's mouth was "she wouldn't have known that.  It isn't in your records."  A-ha!  That was exactly what I was wondering.  Would it be in my record.  Nope.  She said that, unless I had an amniocentesis (which I didn't), the sex of the baby would not be in my records.

I was relieved.  I mean, I have finally gotten my head around the possibility of a girl but now I feel like we will still be surprised after all.  So the predictions continue.  Everyone that we ran into last night said that I have all the signs (and the looks) of it being a boy.  But, of course no one knows other than Cashew themselves.  I am looking forward to finding out...and it won't be much longer now.

T and I have decided that, at our next appointment with Hutch, we are going to go ahead and schedule an induction in case things don't progress after my due date.  I want my parents to be here when it happens so desperately that I want to be sure it comes out no later than the day or two after Christmas if it doesn't come sooner on its own.  This might stir controversy but to each their own.  It is an ultimate priority of mine to have my family here so I will do what I need to in order to make that happen.  And Hutch has already offered to do the procedure if we desired.  So we might as well get it on the books!  But, who knows, Cashew may decide to come sooner and on their own.

That's all for now.  We are continuing to work on the house and our projects to make sure everything is sweet at  moment's notice.  We have been very productive today and now we are settling in and relaxing for the rest of the night.

For now...goodnight!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Oh and...

My Group B Strep results are in (I know you've been dying to hear). 

Drum roll....



To be or not to be...

There are days when I feel that I am not ready for the new life ahead of me and would rather stay pregnant forever to avoid the alternative.  Mostly because of the unknown.  But then there are days when I can NOT wait to be free of the grips of pregnancy so that I can have some semblance of my life back!  That day, my friends, is today!

Last night I had dinner with one of my best friends, Amy.  She works out every morning and has been really kicking butt with it.  She has a work out partner that helps motivate her to get to the gym at the VERY early hour of 5:30 AM.  Well, her partner bailed on her for this morning and told her this last night while Amy and I were together.  Amy really wanted to go to the gym anyway but didn't know if she would be so up for it once the magical hour rolled around if there was no one to meet.

I didn't think too much about it and just said, I will meet you!  Hell, I am up already since I don't sleep well and I haven't been to the gym in some embarrassing amount of time.  It would do me good to get my butt up and out the door, into some crisp morning air and onto a treadmill.

So, after a night of literally NO sleep, I still felt the urge at 5 AM to throw on some sweatpants and head to the gym.  The old familiar route was comforting, even in the cold December air.  When I got there, Amy and I hit the treadmills.  She busted it into high gear while I did the old lady walk next to her.  Mostly holding my belly so that nothing would fall out (which is sometimes feels like will happen).  As we talked, I looked around at the other people in the gym and found myself growing envious of the flat stomachs, the muscular calves and the ability to run without passing out.  I watched Amy work up a sweat and longed for the next time I get to work up a sweat while running like the wind.  I found myself walking faster than the setting of my treadmill because my body is so eager to be in gear again.  But, everytime I would, my big stomach would hit the handle bar and remind me that I am still a pod with no flexibility and no energy.

But that didn't keep me from fantasizing about the day that I am back!  Amy and I talked about meeting once a week in the mornings, once I am cleared for take off by the doctor, to do a hardcore work out.  We talked about meeting to play racquetball.  I talked about taking Spinning classes to really shed some sweat (and pounds).  My heart skipped a beat thinking about how awesome it will be to push myself so hard that I nearly puke and I drifted off thinking about sweat dripping off my forehead and soaking through my clothes.  I am SO ready to be back.  I am SO ready to wear jeans that button and zip.  I am SO ready to crunch my ab muscles so hard that I feel the soreness for days.  I am SO ready to run - uphill, downhill, flat, sprint.  I don't care.  As Forrest Gump said, I want to RUN!!

I didn't have a hard pregnancy and it still isn't that difficult other than the not being able to bend over, walk up steps without being out of breath, get dressed without a drama and the sometimes creepy distortions of my stomach.  But I am ready to get it out, figure out how to take care of it, establish a routine and then - my plan is six weeks or whenever Hutch gives me the ok - to get back to working out.  T supports me 100% and, hopefully by then, I will be pumping a supply so that he can take care of Cashew while I get some much needed air! 

Not to mention my goal of pumping a supply so that I can have beers on Super Bowl.  Even though the Steelers won't be there.  But I do miss my beer as much as I miss my gym.  I sure don't know if I am ready to be a mom but I do know that I am ready to be ME.  So, today is a day that I am good with this pregnancy being over.  I know that means a lot of pain, a lot of responsibility and a lot of change.  But it also means feeling more like me again, hitting the gym and FINALLY having my cold, frosty beer!!  The light!!  I can see it!!