Thursday, June 28, 2012

Diary of a Real Pregnancy: Week 10 - Still Starving, And Letting the Secret Out (a Little)

Perhaps this week you're feeling a little more confident about telling your news to a few people... perhaps not. If you do decide to tell, it's fun to think of a unique and memorable way to share the news. Something more fun than, say, blurting it out while the other person is mid-sentance about something totally unrelated because you JUST CAN'T HOLD IT IN ANY LONGER. Not that I know anyone who would do that. *cough* These things are then followed by "You can't tell anyone!". I'm kind-of assuming everyone at the office knows now, one way or another, but they're not suppoed to know so they aren't saying anything to me, just looking sideways at my belly when they think I'm not looking. Or am I just being paranoid?

For me, since I still don't have any REAL proof that this pregnancy is REAL (other than the fact that I'm getting fatter and my boobs are still getting bigger), telling is hard. Though knowing that this is very likely our last pregnancy, it's kindof fun to keep the secret in as long as I can... I like walking around thinking, "I know something you don't know!". Unless as I said they DO know and I'm the one not in the know. This is confusing. That happens a lot lately. Where was I?

Ah yes, there's the whole getting fat thing. I'm thinking it's a good idea to make sure people at work, neighbours etc see me eating junk all the time, so they will just think I'm letting myself go. Hehe. Is that just a blatant excuse to eat junk food? I plead the 5th (or whatever the Canadian equivalent is). I'm assuming in a couple of weeks when the real reason I'm getting fat comes to light, they're going to be all "Is that why you've been pigging out?" or "I thought you were looking a little hefty!".

Pants are getting tighter again, after the very brief reprieve from bloating last week. Oh, no this is the real thing. The main problem is I'm not just getting a little pooch... I'm getting bigger everywhere. I like to think it's a slower metabolism, and not a sudden and insatiable affection for junk food that's to blame. Whatever -- it means I can't comfortably button up my pants (again) and so am walking around the office either stuffed into pants that are cutting off the circulation to the lower half of my body (that's got to be healthy), or walking around with them undone which is just a recipe for disaster.

Until next week, if you need me you can find me at the salad bar. I mean chocolate bar. What?? I'm still choking down taking my prenatal vitamins, so I'm covered nutritionally... right?

Previous: Week 9: Starving, and Stuffed
Next: Week 11: The Miracle of Maternity Pants

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Quick garden update

I was lambasted the other day for not posting any garden updates lately. I actually have a good reason for that: I don't really have any.

So it turns out I don't have a whole lot of free time. Ha! Two little kids, a big house that just keeps getting messy, a husband, a full-time job, daycare, t-ball, laundry, groceries... yeah.

Luckily I don't think the garden really needs me much at this point. All the plants are in, the rain has taken care of most of the watering and then some (though The Hubs did install an awesome irrigation system which I'll post about later), no more risk of frost thank goodness. I've fertilized a bit and just sortof left the plants to their own devices. Sink or swim I say!

Really though it's just that I haven't had much time to get out there and 'tend'. I know there are some pests making their way into the beds - I saw some ants devouring my bean plants *grumble* and some slugs getting suspiciously close to the beds by way of the irrigation hoses. They're not sliming up the walls of the beds themselves though - I wonder if they're repelled by cedar? Hmm.

Anyway those things, along with the lack of sunshine (welcome to summer in the Maritimes) means not much is happening out there. Or at least, it wasn't, last time I checked, which was about a week ago. Eek! I'll get out there soon to take some pictures and keep you all posted.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Diary of a Real Pregnancy: Week 9 - Starving and Stuffed

It seems these days there are two states: starving, or stuffed to the point of nausea. I can be fine one minute and the next minute, so hungry I feel like I'm going to implode. And if I can't eat within 15 minutes, the nausea sets in or I get head-spinningly crazy. Do NOT get between me and my food!

Interestingly this week, formerly ill-fitting pants are suddenly zipping and buttoning without issue. The bloating has all but disappeared, leading to worry about whether everything is really okay and if this whole thing is even real?

By now most women have had their first prenatal appointment with the family doc or OB/Gyn, or it's been scheduled. If you're old like me (Advanced Maternal Age... nothing will make you feel like you're over the hill like getting pregnant over age 35!), or if you live in a place where these things are offered to everyone, you'll have the option to get a bunch of tests near the end of the first trimester. These tests (a blood test and ultrasound) check hormone levels and various measurements on the baby, as markers for things like Downs Sydrome, Trisomy-18, and cerebral palsy. It's usually at the first prenatal appointment that you'll get info on these tests and decide if you want to proceed with them.

My first prenatal appointment this week was largely uneventful, partly due to the fact that I'd just recently (2 weeks before we conceived) seen my doctor for my annual check-up, and knowing we were "trying", she went ahead and did some of the extra pokes and prods that you'd normally get at your first prenatal. Since she'd be "down there anyway" she went ahead and did the STI/STD screens and such, which is standard here when someone gets pregnant.

One thing she did do, though, was have a feelski of my uterus (hello!) and much to my relief, she said it felt very much like a pregnant uterus. Yay! It's still too early to hear the heartbeat with a regular Doppler, so she didn't even try that.

Between my pregnant-feeling uterus, and the bloodwork I had done to confirm the pregnancy, at this point it's starting to hit home... we really ARE pregnant, yo! Now let's keep it that way!

Previous: Week 8: The Dreaded C-Word
Next: Week 10: Still Starving, And Letting the Secret Out (a Little)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Diary of a Real Pregnancy: Week 8 - The Dreaded C Word

The Dreaded C-word... c-c-constip... ahh I can't even say it

Oh, lovely lovely. All jacked up on prenatal vitamins, a digestive system that has come to a halt and hormones doing all kinds of wild and wonderful things to your insides, you may find yourself sitting on the throne, waiting. And waiting. And nothing's happening. But then it is! But no... it's not.


Ohhh it's so wonderful isn't it? The bloating makes total sense now. Meanwhile it's been hours, days, who knows how long since you went last. Really?... I have to feel crappy, AND deal with this? It's really not fair.

Now, knowing this was coming, after having gone through the unpleasantness for the last two pregnancies, I decided I'd try to preempt the constip-... er... issue. Here is my 8-week-gestation Plan To Avoid Getting Bunged Up.

  1. Full coffee, every morning. Choke it down. It's worth it. 
  2. Exactly 4 prunes, every morning. No less, and ohdeargod no more. 4 is the magic number.
  3. One Fibre1 bar mid-morning. I don't care how good they are DO NOT EAT TWO. Trust me on this one.
  4. Water, water, water. More water. Then some more. So much water you feel like you're floating.
This should be just enough to keep the horrible C-word at bay until your digestive tract can catch up with the hormones and get things going normally again.

They are your new friend. Embrace them.

Previous: Week 7: Back to Normal?
Next: Week 9: No, Really - Starving, and Stuffed

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Diary of Real Pregnancy - Week 7: Back to Normal?

Week 7 seems to be a weird one. Sometimes you feel totally and utterly normal... which of course freaks you the heck out, because you stress about whether everything is okay. These first few weeks are so tumultuous and you have no real way of knowing whether things are progressing as they should. If you're lucky enough to get an early scan at this point, you might get a peek at your little bean, and even see the heart fluttering.

Funny story about that... with my second pregnancy I selfishly wanted an early ultrasound... so, knowing they have to give you one if you don't know the date of your last menstral period I... totally lied to my doctor. Yep, I did that. I knew exactly when I got pregnant, but I got The Hubs on board and we totally fibbed and hummed and hawed over the whole date thing ("Gee, I really don't know... *giggle*") and sure enough the doc sent us for a 'dating ultrasound'. Hehehe. Little did I know this would be an INTERAL SCAN. Say WHA?? Yep, that's exactly what it sounds like. Note: when the ultrasound tech gets out a huge condom-looking thing and a bottle of lube... be afraid.

Of course, at this point, even if you feel (eerily) normal, don't tell anyone that you feel fine (if you have told anyone the news at this point). That's a sure-fire way to get hit with nausea, heartburn, gas, or more of the mind-numbing exhaustion from last week, just as punishment for opening your big mouth.

Oh yes there are moments where you feel normal or even forget you're pregnant, and then WHAMMO, it hits you again... just typing the words "back to normal" above brought me a wave of nausea as a slap in the face. I should have known! Or the weirdest things will set you off... the other day it was someone's cologne in the elevator (the heightened sense of smell doesn't help, but seriously this person must have taken a bath in the stuff... gross). Or, when I was cleaning up from supper the other night, and the sauce that had tasted so good just 20 minutes prior, suddenly made me gag and wonder what had died.

So, the constant state of starving and yet not wanting to eat anything is still lingering. Pants are difficult to button up... maybe now's a good time to sneak into a maternity store ("I'm shopping for my... er... sister...?") and get one of those Belly Bands. Or try my handy-dandy first trimester trick: a hair elastic looped through the button loop and then around the pants button... gets you about an inch of wiggle room which is just about what you need at this point. And for me, heartburn has been rearing it's ugly and burny head... but only when I eat chocolate. NOOOooOOOoooooo!! Chocolate is the only way I get through the afternoon! Sigh. And so it begins.

For coffee lovers (like me) -- if you haven't given up coffee altogether (like me), the day may come where you just can't stomach the stuff (like right about now). For now I am powering through it... because seriously nobody wants to deal with me, including myself, if I haven't had coffee. But there may come a day, and soon, when it has to be given up. And that will be a dark day, indeed.

Still keeping the Big Secret for now... Literally lying to people's faces, even though it's always right there on the tip of my tongue. Especially difficult when, somehow, half the conversations that come up have to do with pregnancy, babies, maternity leave... BUT, since there's still the very real possibility of something Bad happening and if (heaven forbid) it does, I want to be able to tell who and when I choose, not because the Big News has to be untold, a secret it will remain. For now, I hold my tongue, worry about lack of symptoms, go to bed early and keep a stash of uneaten chocolate in my desk drawer...

Previous: Week 6: Exhaustion
Next: Week 8: The Dreaded C Word

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Diary of a Real Pregnancy - Week 6: Eye-Burning Exhaustion

Week 6... it's finally starting to settle in that you're pregnant. PREG.NANT. And that's when it starts to get really, super fun. Super fun.

First there's the exhaustion. Not just, Oh gee I'm tired, *yawn*. No. This is eye-burning, head-pounding, brain-numbing, feel-like-I'm-going-to-die exhaustion. The kind of tired that has you constantly searching for the nearest place to lay your head, trying not to walk around anywhere, or talk to anyone for that matter.. I literally closed my eyes while driving home yesterday, thinking "Ohh I just need to close my eyes... for a second... or two..." Seriously! ACK.

Anyone who already has kids knows you can't just go home and go to bed or crash on the couch... no, there are littles to attend to, and they don't let you take any time off. Constant little needers of things! (But I love them... I do.) But I've come up with a few games to keep them off my back just a bit: like hide & seek where I hide in my bed, under the covers, with my eyes closed, while they walk around the house saying "Mommy? Where ARE you??". Then they find me... and I cry a little.

From the moment I wake up until I drag myself to bed, all I can think about is when I'll get to close my eyes next. Unfortunately, I still have to work, and since nobody knows my little secret, I have to sit at my desk or walk around the office and look alert. I won't lie -- I've done the whole head-in-hands, 'concentrating really hard on the papers on my desk' thing... with my eyes closed. People must be wondering if I have a drinking problem and I'm hung over all the time... which is a super way to maintain professionalism around the office, I'm sure. Alternatively I've found I can go to the washroom (which I need to do anyway) and put my head in my lap and get a little nap that way. I'm sure my stall mates wonder what the heck is going on there... Especially when I emerge from the stall with knee-imprints in my forehead, wiping away the drool. Heh. For the record I've never done that.

On top of the eye-burning exhaustion and peeing all the time (really... the pregnant peeing starts this early -- it has to do with kidneys flushing, or something...), there are the headaches which have started for me right at 6 weeks and haven't let up. My entire head and face hurts... but of course I can't take anything useful because of the whole, growing a baby thing.

Finally, I am starving All.The.Time. It's the weirdest thing because I don't really feel like eating, or nothing sounds good to me... but my stomach is constantly growling. Strange state to be in.

I am very lucky (knocking on all things wood) not to have been affected by morning (read: all day all the time yuck yuck yuck) sickness. Sure, the occasional wave of nausea just to remind me I'm not so special, but I know some people suffer from day one and it can get BAD. So far so good in that department.... I wait with baited breath for that loveliness to kick in.

Now if you will excuse me... I have some more "concentrating" I need to do... zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...

Previous: Week 5: Fear and Trepidation in my Uterus
Next: Week 7: Back to Normal?

Friday, June 01, 2012

How to Soften the Blow of a 6 am Wake-up

Anyone who knows me know that I'm not a morning person. I'm pretty much the opposite of a morning person... covers-over-head bemoaning the arrival of the sun. I'll probably never be one of those people who willingly leap out of bed at 6 am to greet the day. No. Never.

That would be me.

For all intents and purposes, The Boy has followed suit, preferring to lounge in bed until 8 am (if given the opportunity), or later. He's always been a "good sleeper" - and by that I mean, sleeping when I want to sleep, especially in the morning. It's been a good run.

Which is why is was a bit surprised to discover that The Girl, my dear, sweet daughter is actually... dun dun duuuun... a morning person. *shudder* Not just a morning person... an EARLY morning person.

Now I know I have NO room to complain here. NONE. Early morning in our house is 6:00 am. For a lot of parents, this practically qualifies as mid-day. But for us, that's really frikken early. Not for my daughter! She's up and at 'em, bouncing her curly head around like it's party time. (Or, sometimes, crying and yelling and wanting one of us.)

The other thing to note about The Girl is that she's a tried-and-true Daddy's girl. Always has been - literally from day 1 she has always been comforted by Daddy and would run to him first whenever she got hurt or scared. I learned early on not to take this personally. Well okay no I didn't - I'd be all, "Dude, I carried you for nine months and pushed you out - and that was no picnic let me tell you - and this is the thanks I get?" - but eventually I just went with it. Besides it's kindof nice when a child wakes in the middle of the night and you have to shrug and say "Ehh, what can I do, she wants you!" hehehe.

This morning, 6 am came much earlier than usual. I was up late the night before, after baking treats for Treats Club at work (I love where I work... seriously, Treats Club! :)). 6 am, the familiar pitter-patter of feet and the usual whines from The Girl made me curl up, covers-over-head, hoping she would run to Daddy's side of the bed. Which she did. Ha! Victory!

Until... "Mama!" (pushing Daddy away and reaching for me) "Maaamaaa!"... Yep, she pulled the Mama Card.

Thing is, even at 6 am, The Girl is as adorable and sweet as ever. Her face is like a frikken cherub, which makes it really hard to be mad at her. And when she pulls the Mama Card, wanting ME and only ME, and being all sweet and lovey, well I melt a little. Can't fault her - I mean, I am pretty awesome. Would just be nice if she'd waited til 7 am to show me the love.


Diary of a Real Pregnancy - Week 5: Fear and Trepidation in my Uterus

Wasn't that a clever play on the movie title? Ehh? EHH? No? Yeah well my brain is mush now so shut up.

At this point I'm really starting to think this whole thing was just crazy. I'm also wondering if it's even real. Aside from the fact that I've gotten a positive pregnancy test (or 3... *cough*), and my period hasn't arrived, I feel normal. Too normal... The sore boobs have eased up, I'm still tired exhausted but HELLO: I'm a mom of two young kids... they wear me out! Things all seem... normal. For now. Nosebleeds, headaches, randomly blanking out and forgetting the names of things... I mean, sure, they're symptoms but they're just a bunch of things that could hit me on any random, non-pregnant day, right?

OHholycrapI'mpregnantOMG. *ahem* What was I saying?

Granted, at this point I'm taking prenatal vitamins, which makes it seem a little more real than it otherwise would. Especially since those huge suckers (do they really need to be horse pills??) make me throw up every time I take one. Awesome! I've since figured out I can take them at night with no ill side effects, other than standing in the bathroom gagging because seriously, they are stupidbig. Someone needs to do something about this... inventors, are you listening? Prenatals that don't make you choke? Too much to ask? Oh don't suggest that I take the smaller prescription ones that you need to take 3x/day... have I mentioned my brain is mush? Who could keep all that pill-taking straight in this frame of mind?

It's truly amazing / annoying / incredible what goes on in these early weeks and months, before you're even at liberty to tell anyone what's going on. Oh and you really have to resist telling people because it feels like it's written all over you. Can't they see I'm wearing my fat pants? Aren't these purple under-eye circles a dead giveaway? She just looked at me funny... does she know?? Plus it would be nice to explain why you're being such a moron with simple tasks like spelling and uhm, remembering... you know... what's the word... stuff. And I swear The Hubs forgets that I'm pregnant sometimes, what with all the not-offering-to-do-stuff-for-me and the not-rubbing-my-feet and what-not (seriously!), and I want to say "How could you forget.... it's ALL I think about!!". Sure I look normal on the outside but inside? It's a hormone tsunami in there, mister.

And every time you sit down to pee, which is happening more and more frequently, there's The Fear. The fear that when you wipe, you will see red. I think about this alot. And then try not to think about it. Because we all know far too many people who have been through that whole gong show, and it's terrifying to think that so many pregnancies end before they even get started. It happens to SO many women... it can happen to anyone. So yes, I check the TP when I wipe, but I hold my breath and cross my fingers when I do (which is harder than it sounds), and so far so good. *knocking on wood*

Previous: Week 4: Finding Out
Next: Week 6: Exhaustion