A Couple of Firsts and a Last

13 03 2011

The baby, currently referred to as “Cinnamon Bear,” received his or her first piece of mail.  The lucky little stinker, it was not just a letter but a package, sent by Auntie Ceci and Uncle Hal.

Here is what was inside:

Awwww…

Baby clothes look really small until you have a baby growing inside of you.  Then, suddenly, they seem awfully big…

In addition to receiving Baby’s First Mail, I also debuted the first of my maternity clothes.

This was entirely due to gas and bloating.

I am rather long-waisted, so it’s hard to find shirts long enough for me when I am not expecting.  Now that I am some weeks pregnant, it doesn’t take much of bloat to push my stomach right out the bottom of the shirts I usually wear.  I discovered, however, that some maternity shirts are like very long, very stretchy regular shirts.  I am a fan.  I may never go back to buying tank tops and t-shirts from anywhere but the maternity section.

And the Last:  tomorrow will end my First Trimester.  By Tuesday, I will be 14 weeks pregnant and moving on to the next stage of this adventure.  I am feeling rather scared and superstitious again, since it’s been 3 weeks since my last midwife appointment, but luckily I have another appointment on Tuesday.  If all goes well, I will have some reassurance as I begin the Second Trimester.

I understand that I get to look forward to: more heartburn, more back pain, less sleep, more trips to the bathroom, and fewer of my regular clothes fitting me.

I also understand that it will all be worth it the second I feel the baby move.

It’s sounds like a crappy trade-off, really, but I can’t wait.





They Say the Darndest Things…

13 03 2011

For a long time, the funniest comment Jason had made regarding parenthood was during a conversation in which he was trying to convince me that he could work from home and care for an infant.

Me: What happens when you’re on a conference call and the baby is screaming?

Jason: I’ll just wheel it into the other room.

Me: They don’t come with wheels.

 

Equally amusing was his suggestion that I shouldn’t pump at work: “It’s a 45 minute drive each way,” he explained.  “Just pump while you drive.”

 

Last night, Jason asked what I was doing.  I told him I was researching baby carriers, and he wanted to know what a baby carrier was.

“You know,” I told him.  “Like a backpack but for carrying a baby.”

“We have plenty of backpacks,” he said.  “We really don’t need another one.”

“Well, baby carriers are meant for carrying an infant.”

“Oh, it’s silly to buy one when we have so many packs,” he insisted.  “We can just put it in one of those with some blankets around it to keep it from falling out.”

 

Today, I had been practicing with the wrap my sister-in-law sent me (along with the recommendation that I practice with the cat – clearly not understanding the half-feral nature of my resident feline).

Jason saw the yards of material and asked what it was.

So I demonstrated.

Wolverine seemed confused as I attempted to get him into the baby wrap...

...but there was no confusion when I tried to make adjustments - he was out for blood.

Okay, so here’s the deal: I totally make fun of my husband for the seemingly crazy and un-parent-like comments he makes regarding the care of our future offspring.

But the thing is?  I’m the one putting a cat into a baby carrier.





Sweet Dreams

5 03 2011

Jason and I have had a few lazy, movie-watching days lately, as my energy level has been at zero and Jason is always ready to join me for a couch-sitting marathon.

Recently, we watched the new Adam Sandler flick, Grown Ups.  Not a bad comedy.  Until it revisits you in your dreams…

I go to the hospital nursery, accompanied by a nurse, to see my newborn baby.  Behind floor-to-ceiling windows, a half-dozen swaddled babies lay scattered on the carpet, napping quietly.  Instantly, I recognize my own baby: the twenty-pound giant with the Elvis-style pompadour.  That’s right.  The giant, ugly beast of a freak of nature.  To my credit, in my dream, while recognizing the freaky unattractiveness of my offspring, I do not feel any revulsion or disappointment, I go to him immediately and cradle him with love.  On waking, however…

REALLY???

I hold Rob Schneider fully responsible:

Imagine Rob Schneider's head pasted onto an infant's body, and you will understand the horror of my dream...

I will be carefully monitoring my movie-watching from now on; give me only movie stars whose attributes are fitting for an attractive newborn.

On the other hand, when I look at this photo of Jason, I wonder if I can really blame Rob Schneider after all…

My Baby Daddy





Snow Baby

24 02 2011

Honestly, I’m not much of a skier.  But I married a skier.  And now I am apparently growing a skier.

 

 

Jason scoffed at the general wisdom that pregnant women have no business skiing.

But he skied behind me for three and half hours, just to be sure nobody ran into me.  Or our future ski team member.





Or Maybe It’s Just Gas

11 02 2011

When I found out I was pregnant this time, I didn’t want to tell many people – or any, really.  Jason told plenty, but I only told a few – including a couple of people at work who would need to know if anything went wrong.

On hearing the news, one of my coworkers said, triumphantly, “I thought so!”

I must have looked puzzled, because she elaborated: “Well, a couple of weeks ago, I thought you were getting, you know, a belly.”

“Linda!” I gasped.  “I’m only, like, six weeks along.  I think you’re just calling me fat!”

 

 

Today, I announced to several people that my pants are getting tight.  Universal cheers to this.

Until I explained: “They are getting tight on my thighs.”

I paused.  Then: “Do you think I’m gestating this baby in my thighs?”

I was almost hoping for it, really.

 

 

I haven’t been doing belly shots during this pregnancy.  I’m trying not to be superstitious about anything this time around, but it’s nearly impossible.  Today, I placed an order for a few cloth diapers, and as soon as I hit the “Place Order” button, I immediately ran to the bathroom to check for spotting and began overanalyzing every twinge in my uterus.  In addition to my fear of causing spontaneous abortion by doing something reckless, like, um, I don’t know, actually acting like I’m expecting a baby in seven months, I am still recovering from this disappointment during my previous pregnancy: I spent two days absolutely fat with pregnancy – I mean, unquestionably so – and then, just like that, a good, long fart and I was deflated.

 

 

However, yesterday a coworker told me I was showing.  And I wanted to believe her.

 

 

So:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Here’s 9.5 weeks… Or maybe I just really, really need to fart.





The Real Deal

8 02 2011

 

Yeah, I totally see how the picture above could be entirely meaningless, and it’s my kid, for heaven’s sake.  But I do know this much: in that curve of dark space (which looks sort of phallic to me, a sure sign I’m not ready to parent), there is a light colored sort of blob that looks a little like a Cinnamon Bear but much more like a very tiny E.T. reclining in there.

And I am the proud creator of… that thing.  And by “thing” I do mean “miracle of life, etc., etc.”

That’s not to say I don’t smile and go teary-eyed every time I see it, and that’s not to say I haven’t looked at the image a hundred thousand times today.

It’s just to acknowledge that if my photo-of-the-day looks like a weird, phallic, extraterrestrial abstract painting to you, I totally get it.  I really do.

But it was love at first sight for me.





My Longest Post Ever, With Lots of Words In ALL CAPS

8 02 2011

So… My post-miscarriage mood was admittedly rather depressed and not very blog-worthy.  Added to this, I lost the charger for my camera around the same time.  With my creativity dampened and new photos difficult to obtain, I was rather uninspired to work on daily (or weekly or monthly) posts.

Then this happened:

New Year’s Eve morning, I got up to pee on a stick.  I’m getting awfully good at peeing on sticks, and this was a particularly good one, since it actually spelled out the results for me.  I kept the secret for nearly 18 hours and told Jason at midnight.  Awwww…

And the next 5 weeks were absolute hell.  It was a time of pure, unmitigated anxiety.  My thoughts, when looking at the little digital word, were “Hooray!” but quickly turned to “What if something goes wrong again?  What if I start spotting again?  Should I call the doctor?  Go to the ER?  Do I have to wait a year if I have another miscarriage?  Should I… OH MY GOD DID I JUST FEEL A CRAMP IN MY UTERUS?  WHY IS THIS HAPPENING… Oh, it went away… What if…”

We decided to go back to our hippie midwives.  Having just recently gone through early pregnancy with them, I held off on scheduling an appointment until 10 weeks, when we would have a good chance of hearing a heartbeat.  That 10 weeks would actually be this coming Monday (“Well, at least you’ll finally have a date for Valentine’s Day,” Jason pointed out, typically romantic).

Nothing ever does go according to plan.

Last week, I got a pain in one side.  It wasn’t unbearable, nor was it constant.  But it was consistent, and worrisome.  So I thought I’d just make a quick call to the doctor, maybe see her for an appointment, maybe, maybe qualify for one of those elusive early ultrasounds.  SEVENTEEN CALLS to the doctor later, as well as TWO BLOOD TESTS and FIVE DAYS LATER, I finally got an appointment – but only after my first true I’m-Pregnant-and-I’m-Psycho-Mad-Fit-of-Rage.  Really, the receptionist didn’t know what to do with me except have me come in.

Luckily, the receptionist didn’t have time to warn the doctor, or else the doctor is just very used to women pumped full of hormones, because he was very polite.  He said the word I most wanted to hear at the moment (ultrasound), which made me happy even though it was preceded by two words I’d really rather not hear ever (pelvic exam).  Jason earned the right to watch the ultrasound by first being present while another man prodded my hoo-ha.

Here is what we saw:

Well, maybe I’m pregnant or maybe I swallowed a Cinnamon Bear whole.  The doctor wasn’t entirely sure.  Okay, that was supposed to be our ultrasound picture, but I couldn’t get the scanner to work, so the CB is standing in until Jason has time to help me.  Jason was relieved, probably happy too, but his first comment on it was “I didn’t know what I was going to do if they told us you had squished another one.”  (Just so there’s no confusion, I didn’t really squish the first one, either.  I assume Jason knows that, but it’s hard to tell, really.)

Here’s the thing: I have been SO READY to be a mother.  I have spent so much of my life waiting to fulfill this calling.  And practicing.  Oh, lord, how I practiced.  Mother’s helper, babysitter, nanny, camp counselor-in-training… Years and years of experience, of chasing little kids and changing diapers and endless crying and I loved it all.  I even had eleven weeks of practice pregnancy, and only, like, 25% of women get to do that.  SO READY.

Here’s another thing: I’ve seen a lot of ultrasound pictures.  Thank you, facebook, I’ve seen dozens now, but I’d seen quite a few even before everyone posted theirs as their profile picture.  And it seemed sweet, a little snapshot of a baby growing in some woman’s womb.  Awww… But nothing more than that.

But let me tell you this: nothing, NOTHING prepared me for seeing my own baby’s heartbeat on that ultrasound machine.  NOTHING.  First, I felt relief as the shape of my little Cinnamon Bear showed up, and then I saw the flutter of the heart beating twice a second and I felt further relief because I knew my little Gummi Bear was alive and well, and then OH MY GOD THAT’S A WHOLE FUCKING PERSON RIGHT THERE.  HOLY SHIT, THAT’S SOME NEW PERSON.  And then more relief.  And then, OH MY GOD, WHAT HAVE I DONE?!?  And then joy.  And then, I’M NOT READY!!!  Et cetera, et cetera, for several hours.

So I’m humble now.  And no longer any more or less prepared to be a mother than any other mortal, whether she planned the pregnancy for twenty years or got knocked up her first time.

 

Here is a picture of my cat, because posts with lots of pictures are more interesting:

 

Also humbling: I never understood women who said they couldn’t help gaining too much weight during pregnancy.  Then, three weeks ago, my sweet little Cinnamon Bear took over my mind and made me want to vomit when I tried to eat broccoli.  Or any source of lean protein.  But the Cinnamon Bear was perfectly fine with me eating TWELVE CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES A DAY… FOR A WEEK.  In case that doesn’t sound so extreme, let me point out that A) chocolate chip cookies are about 150 calories each, and B) oh, I did manage to eat some pizza each day, too.

Anyway, with all this on my mind, plus the reappearance of my lopsidedly-enlarging breasts (last heard of here), it was hard for me to blog about anything else.  And while I have no regrets about blogging through my previous pregnancy and my miscarriage, I wasn’t willing to announce this newest adventure until we had that fierce, fast, independent little heartbeat.  Which was going to be next week.  But is today instead.

Happy Heartbeat, Little Cinnamon Bear.

 

 

 

Oh, and here’s picture of the dog, so he doesn’t feel left out:








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