Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Halfway point.

Well, 20 weeks came and went without much pomp or circumstance. It was Hubby's birthday, but we even celebrated that two days early. Work is getting stressful, as it always does at this time of year, and that makes me a little neurotic.

I can no longer deny the fact that I'm feeling better, and it's annoying the hell out of me ;-) I managed to stay late to do a couple of experiments last night, not getting home until 9pm, and while I'm a bit sleepy today, I'm not much more nauseous than usual (which is to say, it's background, and I can pretty much ignore it while going about my business).

The one good thing about it is that I'm at a point where the first couple of months are becoming clouded by memory, and I can actually forsee going through this again ;-) Hubby and I would love for Bean to have a sibling, and for a while at the beginning, I was convinced Bean was destined to be an only child. How I would deal with the NVP the second time around might depend on my work situation, how old Bean is, and a billion other things, but I think I could swing it.

Now, if I can just get some good, productive work done before leaving on vacation, life would be perfect!

Here's to getting through the next two weeks, and celebrating with family for two weeks after that!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

I think I'm taking this whole thing too seriously...


After the great Trip and Fall of 2007, I've been thinking that maybe I'm being a touch too paranoid, even for being a first-time pregger. It may be because my mood is improving as the holidays approach, but I'm finding that I have increasing urges to just run around the room and make funny noises and freak everyone out ;-)

I decided to take stock of how I've been feeling lately, and what things are changing, versus the things that stay the same. **WARNING - May be too much information for many people; feel free to skip it**

  1. The belly, obviously. My waist is now measuring nearly 10" more than pre-pregnancy.
  2. The breasticles. Oh, my good, the boobage. I didn't think it could get worse, but it did. And the funniest thing - they don't look bigger compared to the belly. My little brother, who has been following my progress through weekly online photos, commented last week "Boobies so small!" when, in actual fact, they're probably nearly a full cup size bigger.
  3. My belly button is starting to become shallow, which is the weirdest thing to be vain about. Normally I have a very nice innie, if I do say so myself, and I hate to think that it's going to pop out like a turkey timer. That just creeps me out.
  4. The back pain. It's not really that bad, but it means I sit (and sleep) funny, and now I'm dealing with my usual consequence of that - the painful, swollen sit-bone. (Yes, my ass hurts. Deal with it.) It's interfering with my knitting time, because I can't sit the way I want to, but since I didn't promise anyone any Christmas gifts, it's all good.
  5. The *ahem* gaseousness. So far the only person it affects is me (because my entire family knows that I can fall into a vat of crap and come out smelling like a rose!), but my suffering does affect Hubby indirectly. Some days (though thankfully there are fewer) I'm completely sidelined by the pain, and I can tell it's hard on him to see me hurting. It's also hard to explain to people why you look like you're going to roll over and die when in that state.
  6. The *ahem* potty parade. I haven't slept more than an hour at a time since August. I figure it's just training for the next 18 years.
  7. The constant low-level nausea. I've learned to adapt, drink fizzy things to settle it, and make it through most work-days incident free.
  8. I, the consumate coffee connoisseur, can't stand the stuff anymore, even though I'm allowed a cup a day. We're coffee snobs, and only grind and drink the good stuff, but I just have no interest in it. (Star$$ peppermint mochas, on the other hand, are juuuuuust fine.)

Things that haven't changed:
  1. I am still a night owl, even though I do need 10 hours of rest. Makes my days very weird.
  2. I still enjoy most of the foods that I did pre-pregnancy, now that the nausea is under control. It sucks that I'm not allowed many of my faves, though (blue cheese, sushi, imported fresh cheese, it's all about the cheese).
  3. The obsession with cooking. Even when I feel crappy, and don't want to eat, I still love to cook. As long as it isn't shrimp curry, the smell of which always turns my stomach.
  4. The emotional episodes. I thought about it, and for the last number of years, I've had emotional outbreaks, including wanting to cry for no reason, at about the same frequency. Most of the time before it was due to PMS, or just really stressful periods at work, and now it's hormonal, but the frequency is about the same.
  5. I'm still a procrastinator. I know I should be planning out some furniture rearrangements, start thinking about babyproofing the living room (and getting rid of some of our crap), and make lists of what we need. I also know that versions of those lists can be found on the internet, the furniture is sparse enough that it can be rearranged in an hour, and that the crap in the livingroom is Hubby's, and therefore his job ;-)
Next Monday will be the halfway mark... woo-hoo!

Friday, November 16, 2007

My support system.

Even though we're rather isolated down here, I have to keep giving props to my wonderful support system, that's scattered around the continent.

First off, there's my mom. She hasn't been pregnant in nearly 25 years, but still has so much advice and love to give. She's my first line of defense.

There's a tie for second place - and these two girls have been tied with each other for almost 20 years.

A., who is back in my university city, has no children yet (just a fiancé, whom I adore). Even so, she's just over the moon about Bean, and loves to hear all the details, even the gory ones.

Then there's C., who already has three kids, all under the age of five (God bless her little mothering heart). She's my closest friend who's been pregnant, and due to her job has a wealth of information about pregnancy and health at her fingertips. After I called my mother last night, I called her and she saved my sanity.

You see, last night I went arse over teakettle, slipping on some wet leaves that are on all the sidewalks around here. My belly didn't even hit the ground, although I really messed up both of my hands, along with my left knee, not to mention my shoulder and chest muscles which took the brunt of the impact. (Typing is fine, provided I don't put too much pressure on my wrists.)

My logical brain knows that I'd probably have to do a lot worse to even wake Bean up in there, since s/he's so well padded and cushioned. My hormonal brain, however, cried for hours. At the insistence of Hubby, I called C., and she comforted me, reassured me, then laughed at me in a very good natured way. She then told me about how she fell when she was nearly 7 months pregnant with her first boy, and her belly bounced off of the icy pavement. She said that her own husband laughed at her bruise for weeks, but only after her OB reassured her that both she and baby were completely fine.

I'm pretty sure that, had I not called her, I would've lain awake all last night, dragged myself to emergency this morning, and wasted the whole day to find out that I'm fine. I feel fine, I have no pain or any other symptoms, and I even think I can feel some real somersaults. But I needed that phone call to believe my logical brain.

Thanks, C., I love you!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


This morning we had our 17+ week check-up, and all is well. I still can't say for sure that I can feel Bean doing somersaults in there, but we listened to the hearbeat, and s/he moved around enough during that time that the Doc had to reposition the doppler several times.

Maybe it's a result of being tired (early appointment) or the french fry thing isn't working anymore, but I feel like crap warmed over right now. I also had some healthy, fiber-y cereal at lunch, though. Maybe that pushed my stomach over the edge.

As long as I can make it through my conference call, I'll be good.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Does this qualify as a craving?

The only thing I can think of eating for lunch lately is french fries. With ketchup. And mayonnaise. Mayo on fries is common in some places, but I'm not sure if it is here.

Plus, it's cheap. I can get my lunch for $1.60 that way; anything from the caf that's remotely approaching healthy is $6 or $7.

I'll eat fruit for supper, I promise.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

What's up with this weirdness?

I've always been a pale-skinned person. I have never tanned, I can burn within minutes of being outside. I don't have red hair (naturally; sometimes I help it along), but during the summer I freckle like a ginger kid on my cheeks and arms.

I read that there can be pigmentation changes during pregnancy, and I expected some, but I ended up with only two so far.

Two freckles, very dark, one on my upper lip and one on my lower. I've never freckled on my lips before, and it makes me look like I've forgotten to use my napkin after lunch.

I wonder what's in store for the next few months?

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Still awake.

I should be sleeping, or at least preparing to, but this evening has been crazy.

I came home from work exhausted, and looking forward to an evening alone. Hubby has to do a 24-hour time course at work, which means he won't be home until midnight. I decided to use up some of my fridge-inhabitants to make a risotto that I'd been planning for about 4 days, as a way to keep busy and make some good ice-box leftovers for the rest of the week.

I ended up burning half the components, and nearly setting off the fire alarm. I now have a whole whack of bland risotto and an expensive pile of burnt sage and pancetta ;-)

Fortunately, I'm not too disappointed - sure, it tastes a lot better with the pancetta, but it's just a fancy word for bacon, which I don't necessarily need. Plus, I can make up for it with good parmesan! It'll still be a huge improvement for lunch over my single-serving mac and cheese that I've been resorting to in the past little while. I'm too tired in the mornings to make a decent fresh sandwich, and I don't like buying cafeteria food.

So, now that my food is refrigerated, and (half) the dishes are done, I still have to settle in to wait for Hubby. I know I should try and sleep, but I'll likely just lie awake and get really frustrated with myself. I could knit, but I'm just bone tired today. I think I'll curl up in my favourite chair and catch up on some TV that I've missed.

Hopefully that will keep me occupied - I'm usually OK with flying solo during the day, but at night, especially now that the time change means earlier darkness, I'm more likely to go wacky.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Happy Anniversary, Dearest.

A brief tally for 2 years married:

1 wedding
2 apartments
2 Christmases as husband and wife
2 PhD defenses
4 job interviews
1 graduation ceremony
countless plane rides
16 weeks of Bean

And a lifetime left to look forward to.

Love you.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

On being alone.

One of the things that's been weighing on my mind lately is our present isolated state, here in a state and country where everything of necessity is a car ride (or plane ride) away, and we've only got good walking shoes, and enough cash to get us home once or twice a year.

Because it takes me a while to rev up through the queasiness when I wake up, I have been spending a lot of mornings by myself in our apartment. Hubby quietly gets up and gets himself ready, because I'm desperate for the extra sleep these days, so by the time I get up, eat, wait for my stomach to settle, eat again, and get ready for work, I've been bumping about alone for 2 hours. This is usually followed by working in my lab, where I'm the sole employee and tenant of our lab space. Monday through Friday - lather, rinse, and repeat.

This is compounded by the fact that we haven't managed to make many friends outside of work, and are in a bit of a different life stage than many of Hubby's co-workers (although I like them all very much - some of us share the same sick sense of humour). Evenings and weekends are spent cleaning, knitting, watching TV, and talking about what's in store for us.

Most nights I don't notice the fact that I can't run next door and have tea with my best grad-school friend, or that I can't make plans to go for breakfast and shopping with my best childhood friend; during our last months at home, I tried to appreciate these things as much as I could, and not take those people for granted. But, some days I can't help but feel sad that, for the majority of this pregnancy (or at least until I join prenatal classes and make some mommy-friends), I'll be physically alone, separated from loved ones by thousands of miles and an international border.

(Hubby is excluded from these calculations, but is VERY much appreciated and loved and is my strength every single day).

All this was starting to get me down, until I realized something a few days ago.

For the rest of this pregnancy, and indeed for the rest of my life from now on, I will never, for even a moment, be alone.

I love you, Bean.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

On comfort.

Well, the cat is out of the bag, and everyone knows. All the family and friends who were in the inner sanctum have been given the go-ahead to tell the rest of the world, and the news is making the rounds. Quite fast, if the messages I'm getting on facebook are any indication.

And, truthfully speaking, I'm not sure I'm entirely comfortable with that.

The logical part of me knows that it's not realistic to keep the news a secret for much longer (even though it would be easy to accomplish since my family and friends are practically all a thousand miles away). I've passed the benchmarks, and things seem to be going well (a nice heartbeat was heard last Wednesday, and I'm feeling better although still queasy a lot of the time). It's just weird - now that it's out, it's both more real to me and more surreal at the same time.

We told Hubby's aunt and uncle this weekend. We see them once a month for a little shopping excursion (since we have no car) and lunch, which gives us a nice little visit. They were of course overjoyed, and were more than happy to take us an extra 10 minute drive outside of town so I could shop for relatively cheap maternity clothes. I was surprised at how reasonably priced everything was, and Hubby was surprised that most of what was available didn't "look like a tent".

I hadn't realized how much my shape had changed, even though my weight has only gone up 3lb. I had stopped wearing a belt most of the time, since my pants were starting to just fit (before they were loose), but once I put on some maternity pants, I was in heaven. All of a sudden, I wasn't constricted or uncomfortable anymore; it turns out that even my super stretchy sweats were snug in the wrong places. I also found myself in the middle of another paradox - even though I was absolutely thrilled that my pre-pregnancy size turned out smaller than I thought (I'd expected to be in XL but I'm nowhere near that), I discovered that I'm completely comfortable with my growing belly. It sticks out a little further than I would've thought for my present stage, but I'm OK with it.

Maybe I'm only OK with it because it's shaped such that it's obvious that I'm pregnant and not just really pudgy ;-)

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

On morning sickness and being grateful.

If I take into account the error involved in dating a pregnancy by the last menstrual period (I don't ovulate at the proscribed time, and therefore am off by 3 days), I'm pretty sure that I'm officially finished my first trimester, and at least one or two days into my second.

Everywhere I look, I read about how the second trimester is better, both in terms of the exhaustion and the nausea. I have noticed some differences lately, but I'm not sure that I'm completely past either one.

The nausea has changed its pattern, and it's a pretty clear change. Up until last week, I was nauseous all day, every day. It would wax and wane, and it seemed that if I could eat through it I'd feel better for about an hour, then it would return. Lately, though, the mornings are still really bad (maybe even a little bit worse), but the afternoons are usually nearly incident-free. I'm hoping that I'll be able to get a period of time each day that stretches to seven or eight hours, so that I can get my productivity back up. I can now eat supper successfully most days, and lunch usually. I'm working my way back to breakfast.

The exhaustion is also still there, but it's changed too. I'm finding it harder and harder to get to sleep, even when I'm really tired, but I can't sleep in anymore. I'd gotten into a routine of going to bed early, and then getting up after 10 hours of sleep, whenever that happened to be (God bless forgiving employers!). The past few days, I've been waking up earlier and earlier, no matter when I get to sleep. Maybe this means I'm getting back into a normal routine. I sure hope so.

Another pregnant blogger posted on Monday about how she's eternally grateful to be pregnant, but that she's not grateful for the symptoms (her situation has been far more trying than mine, and she has my support and respect for it). I used to tell everyone that I was happy to be sick, because it meant that a healthy pregnancy was more likely from the get-go, and I now realize that's not true. Most people aren't happy with being sick all day long, or with less restful sleep patterns. Who in their right mind would be thrilled being less productive at work, or being unable to enjoy cooking and eating as much as they used to? That doesn't mean we're not thrilled to be pregnant.

I have never been happier, or more excited, or more scared, all at the same time. I'm grateful for my feelings, and I'm grateful for my child. I'm trying to appreciate my changing shape, as a preview of the life changes that are coming.

I think for today, though, I'm going to forget about all those big picture things. For today, I'm grateful for the fact that my lunch is settling, and I'm feeling well enough to do some computer work from home.

Monday, October 8, 2007

So much for my spotless record.

Last night was a tear-fest, and it sucked.

I have many theories as to why I finally just broke down, and I'm not sure which to believe. It was Thanksgiving back at home, and most of my family and friends were eating turkey and taters and desserts like pumpkin pie and apple crisp. Hubby and I did decide to go out for lunch, since I didn't feel like cooking up a big complicated meal, and it was pretty good. I had a great burger, and we stopped for ice cream on the way home.

The physical part of the problem started after we picked up our ice cream - one of my pregnancy symptoms is periodic attacks of *gas*. The pain and discomfort rate up at about 11 out of 10, although it usually resolves itself within 24 hours. So, that didn't help my mood at all.

The emotional part had several components. First, I decided to let my parents tell my 88 year old grandmother, and my dad's cousin (who's like a sister to him), and I think I didn't recognize how far away I'd feel, just talking to them over the phone.

My parents and brothers have known for a while. I'd had a bit of a panicked day when we were home for my older brother's wedding, and so I had to tell Mom, Dad, and my little brother (who was my travel companion during the panicked time - see the bottom of this post), so they were told out of necessity. I told my older brother and sister-in-law shortly after, so as not to take attention away from their wedding.

*Edited to remove my mean-spirited rant*

Sigh. After the whole day's discomforts, I just lost it. Poor Hubby didn't know what to do.

Hopefully this week will be better. It's sunny out right now, when they were forecasting rain, so maybe that's a good sign.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

On being grateful.

One of the many side effects of pregnancy (and there are many, I know, because I've experienced nearly all of them) is the tendency to be overemotional.

I've always been an emotional person, but it hits me at the weirdest times. When I was planning my wedding, I would get teary just thinking about first dance songs. During the ceremony, I bounced around like a jumping bean and never once got choked up because I was just so excited.

Fortunately, I've rarely cried in front of people since becoming pregnant. The only exceptions have been those evenings when I've gone the entire day without food, have been really sick, and my husband comes home and takes care of me. When he comes home, brings me jello and juice, and tucks me into bed, I usually cry because I love and appreciate him so much. The past couple of weeks, though, one thing pops into my head and makes me very emotional.

It's the knowledge that, even though only a handful of people know about my present state, this child is so loved. I am so lucky.

Monday, October 1, 2007


I just realized that I forgot to post after my first OB appointment, and that's just not right.

Everything went pretty well, I must say. The only shock (which wasn't really a shock so much as a reality check) was my pre-pregnancy weight. And that's all we'll say about that.

The bottom line is, so far so good. The OB did a quick u/s in the office, and sent us for a second full one based on something he saw. It was a slightly frightening few days in between, even though he tried to be very reassuring. Now, forgive me for getting up on my soapbox, but I have an urge.

When the OB did the u/s, just to check for size and dates, he saw something that he felt was "unusual". He never used the word abnormal, or gave us any reason to think something was wrong, but when he called in a colleague to look, that freaked me out.

The second u/s was scheduled for within 5 days, and they were the longest 5 days of my life. The scan was very thorough, though, and the sonographer very reassuring. She showed the films to the radiologist, and it turns out that what the OB saw was a very normal feature for our gestational age.

Don't get me wrong, I was very happy to get the second scan; the reassurance helped me immensely. My problem in all this is that the OB (who in all other respects is a very good OB/GYN, and I'm happy with him) is NOT a sonographer, and does not have the knowledge to interpret anything past size and date. But, you say, he didn't try to interpret - he sent you to a qualified sonographer. Correct, but perhaps I should've been sent to a sonographer from the get-go, rather than put me through those 5 days of waiting, if it's that important to check size and dates.

*she steps gently down from her platform to signal an abrupt subject change*

We're nearing the date that we're planning on going public with. That part is just as scary. My parents know already, but they're itching to tell some of our close family. *Sigh* I just wish I could be home with them.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

When you're in a bad place, what's the best medicine?

The best medicine is to talk to someone who's gone through the same thing, and come out on the other side.

By now, whomever is reading knows exactly what's going on here. And, as each day passes, it seems like my body has finally figured it out. The nausea seems to increase slightly every day or so, and I thought it was going to stay that way - feeling really awful all day, every day, with no other consequences.

Oh, how wrong I was. Tune on out if you don't want details (although they won't be too graphic)

Saturday I finally got my call on the big white phone. I had just eaten about a half cup of very mild pasta salad, and was thinking all was well, until the encore performance. Then I worried that perhaps I'd had some contaminated green onions, so I threw the rest of the salad out (my favourite salad!) and went on with living.

Sunday was tough, but better. Monday was actually pretty darn good, and I spent the majority of the day at work being productive. This morning, however, I woke up and just knew it wouldn't be a good idea to leave the house.

Sometimes, it's no fun to be right.

Toast didn't even survive twenty minutes this afternoon. I'm glad I decided to stay home.

The one good thing is that I got to talk to one of my best friends, after my 'episode', and she made me feel better. She has three kids, and was sick with all three, including progressing to severe HG with the third. While I know, intellectually, that this is normal, somehow she encourages me, and keeps me positive.

Thank heavens I have a doctor's appointment tomorrow. Perhaps some new wisdom will come my way.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

I've been debating whether or not to write this post for quite a while now.

I'm not hugely superstitious, but there's something to be said for not tempting fate too much. However, since this blog isn't really for public consumption yet, I figure what the heck.

There's also the fact that everything that works its way through my brain lately tends to come out with a distinct whine. I don't like to be that way, but there's a part of me that wants to start documenting no matter what.

I still don't think I'm going to go whole hog into everything that's been happening lately, but suffice it to say I'm pretty tired. I was hoping that I would end up with an experience similar to my mother's (all three, for that matter), but unfortunately it's gone way past a little tiredness in the afternoons.

Don't get me wrong, I do appreciate the fact that this experience is completely different from last time, and that it's a really good sign. I guess I'm just more of a wimp than I thought.

I know I could have a much more raw deal, and I have so much respect for women who go through HG (love you, C.!). I also know that suffering has a purpose, and so I offer mine up.

Now, for some saltines. Even though they don't really work. Ugh.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Just what, exactly, have I gotten myself into?

Keep on drinking the beer - that's probably the last that'll be around here for a while.


Wednesday, August 15, 2007

If you've found this blog...

... go away and come back in a couple of months.

Just kidding. You can hang out. Help yourself to a seat, there's beer in the fridge, and snacks on the table.

I'll be back soon.