So I'm finally getting around to setting up a blog...I'm only 37 weeks, 5 days pregnant, so still plenty of time, right? Turns out, not really, or so we are beginning to think.
I'll quickly bring you up to speed. I am 36, soon to be 37, and my Hubby, John, just turned 33. We were married September 23, 2006 and this is our first baby. We are terribly excited! I took a pregnancy test on December 22nd and it came up positive right away at which point I ran to the bedroom and woke up John to announce "I'm pregnant!", then proceeded to cry, then laugh, a little hysterically. Let's chalk that up to the hormones, shall we?
The timing couldn't have been any more perfect as Christmas was just a few days away and I couldn't keep our Christmas Miracle a secret for very long. So basically I ignored all calls, emails and people until Christmas Eve. I ran out and bought some mini stockings and typed up a poem about our little Christmas Miracle on the way! John and I went to LA to attend the usual Christmas Eve services with my family. I put the poem inside the stockings and was bursting at the seams to spill our news. I will swear that my Mom has a sixth sense of some sort because she kept giving me this "knowing look" like she knew I was going to tell her I was pregnant. My Grandma played it cool, but I'm sure they talked about it on the way to church. My brother and his family got to church right as the opening music started. It didn't stop me from passing out the stockings. They all read their poems (all expect my brother) and then the gasps and giggles started. It was perfect because no scene could be made until after the service, which was great because they had to hold in what I had been holding in for 2 days! My brother finally read the poem, after being elbowed by my sister-in-law, and of course, sweetly had some tears in his eyes. This was all great news as my Brother and Sister-in-Law were also expecting and due in June. Our little ones will be the best of friends and cousins! It was a great night indeed and one I will always treasure. John and I were already beaming with parental pride.
Christmas morning was the usual at my Mom's house. A wonderful brunch followed by lots of presents and more brunch. As I ate, I quickly had to run to the bathroom and puke. I considered that a Christmas gift and a sign of a strong, healthy pregnancy! Call me crazy...most do.
The next few weeks were full of doctor appointments, bloodwork and ultrasounds. I guess because of my "advanced maternal age" they wanted to keep an eye on things. I say, the more I'm monitored, the more I get to see and hear my baby...I'll take it.
John and I had our first ultrasound (the first of MANY) on January 14, 2008 (6 weeks, 5 days pregnant) where we saw a beautiful gestational sac and yolk and saw a heartbeat of 120 beats per minute. Pure miracle.
I had several blood tests done during that time to make sure my hormones were rising as they should. They appeared to be...
On January 28, 2009, we went back to the Doctor to hear the heartbeat. Our baby had grown into what looked like an adorable little gummy bear, and it'd been just 14 days! the heartbeat was a whopping 178 and from everything we had read (old wive's tales), we both thought, it's a girl! The baby measured exactly as it should. Miracle in progress...
More blood tests ensued as I am a worrier (for those that didn't know, I tend to be a tad paranoid). This was a time where my paranoia payed off. It turns out my progesterone levels had started to decline, so I was put on medication to help raise them. I demanded more bloodtests be done and had several more over the next 9 weeks.
February 3rd, we had yet another ultrasound. Baby was definitely growing and limbs were getting bigger and you could see the baby's shape taking place. So fascinating! Blood work was still showing a decline in progesterone even though I was taking medication, so the next step was to introduce intramuscular shots. Yes, I had to give myself a shot every day. I was very nervous, but willing to poke my eyes out if it meant we would have a healthy baby. So the nurse taught me how to administer the shot and I did it right there in her office while she watched. Wham, bam, thank you ma'am. And you know what? It wasn't at all as terrible as you'd think.
John wasn't able to assist in these as he is very squeamish with needles and the last thing I wanted was for him to shut his eyes tight and hope he hits the target. I had the nurse draw two circles on my butt to make targets I could see in the mirror. Worked like a charm and John would freshen those up with a sharpee when they faded. Three days into my shots, I guess I got a little cocky and hasty while doing my injection. I administered the shot like normal, but when I pulled out the needle, blood shot out like a leak in a dam! I was stunned and put the needle down and turned around for some tissue to blot it. Well, damage was done. I had sprung a leak and it got everywhere. It looked like a crime scene. My first response was to yell for John, but then when he got close, I told him not to come in for fear he'd pass out at the sight! Well, it was too late, he was at the door. So I tried to clean up as much as I could, but he took over and cleaned it all up while I tended to my butt. That was the only time something like that happened. I stayed on those shots for 14 weeks which I truly believed helped this little miracle continue to develop.
February 18, 2009 (11 weeks 5 days) we had our first trimester screening. Unfortunately, John could not make this one as he had just started training for his new job that very day. I went to the hospital for the ultrasound and had a great lady do the scan. She boasted of her 12 years as an ultrasound tech and that she was often right about the gender, even at 12 weeks. She took her time showing me all the body parts, organs and cute little alien face. I had done some online research prior to the scan (shocker!) and tried to memorize what gender shots looked like. She asked me if I wanted to know what the sex was "just for fun." Duh, of course I do! So she looked and said "it's a boy...well, wait, no it's a girl!" And I had her show me and it all looked like a blur to me, but it did look like the ultrasounds I had seen online. So I went with it, with of course, the thought that it's all for fun, we'll know for sure in 6 more weeks. So I went home and promplty told John we were having a girl. :) Then I called my Mom and told her it was a girl. Then we called John's parents and let them know we were pregnant and having a girl. In my defense, I did end all of these conversations with, it's early, but she really thinks it's a girl (my version of a disclaimer).
We were finally out of the first trimester when we told our friends the news. It was really hard not to tell anyone, but between being so sick (did I mention I felt ill all day for 3 months?) and starting school (did I also mention that I started back at college in January?) I didn't have much time to socialize, nor did I feel like it. On February 20, we went out to happy hour with all of our friends and put our news out there. I was quite nervous to tell people, but once I did, I couldn't shut up about it (just ask them).
April 6, 2009 we had our "big anatomy scan." I wanted my Mom to come down for it since she had never had one ultrasound with my brother or I (?!) so she came down the day before. We headed off to the baby stores and looked at all the pretty pink stuff that I would be decorating my baby girls nursery in. It was overwhelming but everything was so cute. That night I had three separate dreams that we were having a boy and I quickly told both John and my Mom. Of course nobody listened to me as we already "knew" it was girl. So off we went to the hospital for the scan. My bladder was bursting as we waited to be called in. They called me in first and did the measurements, then after a small whiny beg from me, she allowed BOTH John and my Mom in. Apparently they only allow one person, but I was not hearing any of that. John and my Mom came in and saw the baby on the screen. It was fun to watch their faces as she went over the anatomy. Then she said, "would you like to know the sex?" And I jokingly turned to them and said "anyone want to make any wagers? ha ha..." and as I'm saying this, she blurts out (with no excitement whatsoever) "it's a boy." I am telling you this...the looks on John's and my Mom's faces were PRICELESS. John was stunned, like jaw dropped stunned, and my Mom just let out this burst of laughter! I on the other hand, was all business and shouted "SHOW ME!" She gave us the toilet shot and sure as the sky was blue, there was a penis. John said "where is it?" and I said "that ain't a third leg there!" As we walked out, my Mom and I were giggling and John remained silently stunned. We all went to the parking lot to go our separate ways. My Mom left laughing and John remained speechless. I went home and had to process the fact that my little girl was now a little boy and all pink thoughts turned to blue. I normally hate all surprises, but this one, was the best ever! A little boy!
That night John came home and we talked excitedly about all the fishing, camping, T-ball and hunting we had to look forward to with our little BOY. It was a great day. One of the best so far!
At this point, I was feeling really good, almost done with my first semester in school which I did surprisingly well, seeing that I wasn't eating and slept almost 15 hours a day the first 3 months. My energy was starting to come back and the next thing I needed to tackle besides papers and homework was the nursery...cue scary music. That room has been our "justthrowitintheotheroom" room for 6 years. It was too daunting a task to think about in the first trimester, but the nesting instinct soon took hold of me and I was on a mission. I had our friend Mike out to fix the tile in our bathroom, fix our kitchen sink, build shelves in our garage. I was throwing things out, donating and craig listing everything and it felt good! John and I spent many weekends going through old paperwork and junk we had collected since, er, high school? We finally had it all cleared out by mid-June. I am a textbook Type A personality, so I had on my calendar that I would be ordering baby furniture by June and furnishing by July. I had cleaners in, furniture ordered and got to work on my registries. Timelines had been met!
June 6, we had our 4d ultrasound at Before The Stork. I was so excited I invited everyone! My Mom, Muni, Brother, Sister-in-law, nephews, fairy godmother Lisa and my friend Selena. Everyone was teasing saying that most babies that have an audience don't perform, but I was confident any child of mine would love the spotlight. Uh, wrong. I had a full glass of orange juice before going, but this little guy just wanted to sleep...with his arm across his face (just like Daddy). We tried for about 45 to wake him. I hula danced, drank a bit of soda, tried this side and that, but nope, he wasn't having any of it. I should have known any child of mine would be stubborn too! So we got a few shots of his face, but nothing like the ones you'd see in their catalog. I could have cared less though because I was able to see his little face and chubby cheeks! He was my little moon face and he was perfect. The ultrasound tech felt kind of bad that we didn't get any clearer pictures, so she said we could come back the following week to try again. Well, we would go alone, so he'd probably show his little face then, right? Wrong. This next time he was nuzzled into my placenta and the shots were even more fuzzy than the last. I took the few pics we had and said we'd just have to wait to see the little guy when he's ready.
June 10th I had my 28 week growth ultrasound. They check to make sure the baby is growing on target and all organs are functioning well. He was estimated at 2.67 pounds! All other measurements were average, so he's not too big, not too small, he's perfect!
July 25th I had my first baby shower hosted by my Mom. It was a beautiful, HOT day. (summer has been brutal on my largely pregnant, largely over-heated body). We went to Truxton's restaurant and I was so happy to see my family and friends! It was a special day shared with my relatives from Northern California, childhood and lifelong friends. My Mom truly out did herself with the bright decorations, flowers and a cake that said "And Baby Makes Three." The present table was overflowing with gifts to spoil our little man! It took over 2 hours to open everything! Wow! Such a blessing and such love for this perfect little baby that was cooking inside of me. Speaking of cooking, I was doing alot of that at the shower and appreciated it when people came by to mop my brow as I sweated through all the adorable gift opening. What a great day!!!
July 29th (34 weeks 5 days), I went for another growth scan. I was feeling very large at this point and knew that the baby was head down. Perfect! He was estimated at 5.45 pounds! Again, not too big, not too small, just perfect!
That weekend, August 1, I had my second baby shower hosted by my great friend Selena and her mother. It was all my friends from Orange County whom I've been blessed with since moving here 6 years ago! We had a blast and again, the decorations, cupcakes and games were so perfect! There was a clothesline holding up adorable little beach clothes, the smallest little flip flops and sunglasses I've ever seen. Surfboard cupcakes, blue everywhere and sunflowers for Mommy. It was a very fun day with lots of games and crazy ladies! Another mountain of spoils for my baby boy. This baby is so incredibly loved.
On August 12 (36 weeks 5 days) I had my weekly doctor appointment. This was my first internal exam where they check if I'm dilated. It wasn't the most comfortable thing in the world, but hey, what am I complaining about...there's way more to deal with later, right? So she checked me and I was a 1/2 cm dilated and 40% effaced and she said she felt the baby's head. OMG. That sounds really gross, but cool all the same. He's in position and ready to meet us!
So that brings us pretty much up to speed from the past 8 1/2 months. This week I have been to the hospital twice. Once because I wasn't feeling the baby move as much and I was a nervous wreck. So better safe than sorry, we went to Labor and Delivery and were quickly monitored. The minute I was hooked up...bam bam bam! He was kicking the monitor like he was David Beckham. I felt a little silly, but I'm a Mom now, I can worry freely, right? I went again yesterday because I thought that I might be leaking some amnio fluid. Turns out I wasn't, but they did keep me there for a non stress test because they noticed I'm having contractions and his little heartbeats were going up and down a bit. The midwife asked me if I was feeling any of them and I said "no, but I do have to pee?" She asked what my level of pain was. Well, pain to me is pain, like cut your finger, bang your funny bone pain. What I feel is discomfort. I have a head in my crotch afterall. So I told her no pain, but then pointed to the door and said "you hear that lady screaming across the hall? That's pain to me, so I'll let you know when I feel that." She said it wouldn't be long.
I have another Doctor appointment tomorrow then a non stress test after that. I was so hoping to have him in September, but I'm really ready to see him now. I am in the "hurry up and wait" mode. I guess we'll know tomorrow how much more I've progressed, in the meantime, I'm going to enjoy every precious moment I get to share between me and my boy. Every little kick, hiccup, roll and headbutt to my bladder. Life really doesn't get any better than this.