Friday, September 22, 2006

39 1/2 weeks

39 1/2 weeks
Originally uploaded by doctorlizardo.
A few hours after my water broke; going to the hospital. I had to get one last pic of The Belly, though.

Newborn Limelet

Newborn Limelet
Originally uploaded by doctorlizardo.
Not sure which of us is more relieved he's out!

Limelet & Daddy Day 1

Limelet & Daddy Day 1
Originally uploaded by doctorlizardo.

Limelet & Daddy

Limelet & Daddy
Originally uploaded by doctorlizardo.

Mum's Eye View

Mum's Eye View
Originally uploaded by doctorlizardo.
Dontbite dontbite dontbite!


Originally uploaded by doctorlizardo.

Baby Limelet

Baby Limelet
Originally uploaded by doctorlizardo.

Limelet 2

Limelet 2
Originally uploaded by doctorlizardo.

The Limelet

Originally uploaded by doctorlizardo.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

It's Official [duplicate post]

In classic sitcom style, several hours ago, my water broke in public. However, it was at a pumpkin and cider place, not the grocery store. However, I was determined to get my dang cider and donuts that I had been wanting all week, so I counted on people tending not to look at one's groinal area too closely and bought them anyway. (There was also the giant-belly camouflage factor.) However, it did pretty much look like I had just wet my pants terribly.

So, any further news is likely up to Argot, as I am going to go to the bedroom and work on getting this baby out.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Watermelon Season

I finally got a nursing bra that actually fits. Who ever imagined I'd wear a 38c in anything? Not me, that's who. I avoided the underwires, as they can contribute to getting mastitis. I tend to have a lot of tissue that extends under my arms, which I think makes that effect even more...bad. Worser. Y'know.

My bellybutton has now not only disappeared, but has grown a tiny little pointy area there, like at the non-stem end of an apricot, only smaller. So I guess this means The Belly is still growing.

Having alternate fits of lots of energy and sudden nap attacks, which may be anywhere from half an hour to three hours.

I think I will after all miss some parts of pregnancy as so many have described. Is it just because everyone's nice to me? Being pregnant seems to have many of the social aspects of being terribly ill, as people try to be helpful and protective and solicitous. However, it lacks the withdrawal and social discomfort of others that accompany a terrible illness. I guess most of those who are bitter about childbearing just keep silent. Except for maybe that one terribly offended lady in the grocery store.

I think I will also miss the feeling of having the baby so safe and enclosed and taken care of. I like waking up in the morning and being able to feel the little head swiveling sleepily near my left hip and the little hands fussing about my right hip. It makes me feel like everything is okay with everything.

Alright Already! [duplicate post]

I admit it.

Now that I've had one "scare" and gotten all ready to go, I am getting a bit impatient. Mainly because I feel on hold now with everything. If there hadn't been the scare, then I'd probably just still be trundling along patiently. (I'm still not going to try to do things to "start" it, though.)

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Yet More...

I think this one displays the embiggenment at a more rakish angle. (Like a water balloon about to pop into the sink.)

Holding Pattern

Doesn't this look comfortable?! Lookit those veins.

Well, it all kinda petered out for Monday and Tuesday, though it came back last night and this morning. We'll see. Now that I have things mostly ready, I feel less panicked. It can take its time as far as I'm concerned.

Also, TheLimey re-injured his ankle last night playing football-not-meatball, so now he's limping around terribly. So now I'm actually the more able to walk and carry things, of the two of us. This would be very inconvenient as far as if I had to go in, say, tonight. How could he pack the car, or support me through a contraction, or walk me up and down the halls? It better heal fast, is all I have to say! He's also had a bit of a sore throat lately, so I've been dosing him with lactobacillus.

I hear that it's not terribly uncommon for men to get appendicitis when their wives are in labor. I imagine that this also extends to other injuries and illnesses to some extent, for whatever stress/unconscious reasons.

I went to a La Leche League meeting yesterday, and brought my visiting aunt/doula with me. I didn't know before that she not only was a member of LLL herself 30-odd years ago, but had trained to be a leader before they had to move out of town. So I guess you could say I have a lactation consultant on call. The women there ended up asking her a lot of questions. I also didn't know that my grandmother used a sling!

Being around all those yipping little children made the baby extremely active the entire time, and also sped up my contractions a lot. I don't know if there'll be any particular person I end up establishing a particular friendship with, but I do think that it will be a good way to get me out of the house and around other people who are doing what I'm doing, by way of increasing social support and reducing chances of post-partum depression.

However, I'm definitely going to avoid some of those especially aggressive toddlers whose mothers weren't in the slightest curbing them from running around whacking and poking and shaking all the brand-new infants! Sheesh. Especially that one toddler with her arm in a cast.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Shot of Whiskey?

My herbal childbearing book says that one way to slow or stall labor is to have a shot of whiskey. TheLimey believes that this is actually meant to be given to the husband.

Now, I don't know if it's anything yet, but I've been having a whole lot more of these pre-labor (as if there's a sharp dividing line!) contractions today than any time during the past week or so. My mantra has been "But It Could Still Be Another Week or Two." (That and, "But I'm Not Ready Yet!")

I'm posting this just so that Argot can have a post to which to reply and let people know the outcome, in case I do go in [this refers to original post; this one is a duplicate just for the sake of continuity when I use this as my baby...memory...thingy]. I'm sure as heck not gonna be bloggin'. (I imagine.)

I have been trying to arrange for the traditional womenfolk relations to be around for some of this, as "the materials" say to have someone help the new mum out for three weeks. I don't know about three weeks, but maybe we can get two.

It looks like my stepmom may be able to come out for a few days, perhaps after TheLimey's week off runs out, or maybe with some overlap. Which means I can delay being alone for a while longer, which I really do want to do.

Also, I was initially thinking of having no one but the two of us for the actual birth (too crowded!)--unless Argot could get across country somehow, which she can't--but then I remembered that my aunt has had three natural births of her own. And since I have heard several women (including our birth instructor) say that there's something especially helpful about having a woman there who has gone through it herself, I am now trying to get her out here for the pre-birth segment, and maybe the birth. If it can wait until Tuesday.

Waiter! Where's my whiskey?!

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Duh...(or "Derr..." depending on your accent)

Finally figured out that the key to managing magnesium-induced reflux is to not take it right before bed. I was just doing that because that's when I usually take calcium, and they seem to go together nutritionally speaking. But in terms of physics, if you're going to open a drawstring bag and hope to keep the contents more or less inside it, doesn't it make sense to open in when it's in an upright position, rather than lying on its side?

Friday, September 08, 2006

Magnesium Flare-ups

As I recently noted a slow creep upward of my blood pressure the last couple prenatal visits, I have begun taking magnesium supplements again to counteract it.

However, magnesium relaxes more than the placental (and other) blood vessels: it relaxes all your smooth muscles. That's great for my bronchi, and I furthermore don't even mind the change from "pretty darn constipated--ouch!" to "goes three or four times daily."

What I do mind is the relaxation of what little protection my upper GI gave me by having a closure at the top of the stomach, since now I have absolutely killer reflux simply all the time. it burns constantly, awake or asleep, and feels like I am just about to or have just finished barfing at any given time.

Bed is the worst--I think I was whimpering in my sleep, what sleep I was able to get. Since my stomach is squished down to a flat little baggie in there anyway at this point, there's basically no barrier between my stomach and my throat, particularly when I lie down. This means it's really hard to get any sleep, and I'm even tired-er during the days. I hardly got any work done at all yesterday, not even unloading the dishwasher and making the bed, let alone entering my data.

I may try to prop the top of myself up at an angle tonight. That will go just great with how I already have to prop my feet and lower legs up to reduce the swelling that occurs all during the day! And since I can't sleep on my back or my front, I'll just basically be imitating an angle-iron, sideways, all night. Sheesh.

I still want the baby to take its time: I just wish all these troublesome "symptoms" would be gone!

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Just Waitin'

We had our prenatal visit yesterday; they're now weekly, as I'm full-term. The results of the platelet retest turned out great (147), as did my Strep B test (negative). No antibiotic IV! No antibiotic-resistant superstrep in my baby over the next year! This time I forgot to bring the hand-mirror that I've started using when I have to give a urine sample, as there is no way to see anything that is going on down there without it, but it all worked out okay anyway.

My blood pressure was up again a bit (120/78), though not as high as that one time. This particular midwife seems unworried about eclampsia, as indeed I have normal (not superhuman) swelling despite my complaints, no weight gain (lost three pounds since last week, in fact), and my protein and sugar urine tests are negative.

So, the baby is officially ripe now, and it could be any time in the next three weeks. After taking into account the outdated 40-weeks (ten lunar months) method of counting (from early 1800s, arbitrarily established as a nice round number), and taking into account that I actually know my conception date (as opposed to guessing from last menstruation), the average primigravida pregnancy length would put the birth at the 28th. Well, we'll see. I've had a lot of contractions this past few weeks. (I mean, longer and stronger ones now than the ones that have been going since the fifth month.)

TheLimey apparently feels way more impatient about the event than I do. I think that's because I already get to play with the baby now, whereas he mostly has to take my word for it and would like a chance to squeeze it for himself. At any rate, next month he'll have his baby to squeeze.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Oh Yes, There's That...

In the interest of full disclosure, I should also mention that there are some aspects of the third trimester that clearly revisit the first. It seemed at the time that when there was a brain-growth spurt, my various symptoms were at their worst, so I guess I shouldn't be surprised that some of them have been coming up again, now when the brain is starting the spurt that lasts until the critter is, what, five? So the unholy trifecta of exhaustion (daytime sleeping), insomnia, and depression came back for a few weeks. (Luckily however, no nausea!) And from what I've read, antenatal depression tends to arrive in the first and third trimesters. So, right on schedule, about 34 to 36 weeks.

The sucky thing about the depression is that it's hard to identify at the time (when you're the one inside it), and it's hard to separate from physical symptoms (depression is always physical in some aspect, anyway). I usually don't realize what's happening until either it's reached its ridiculous crescendo and is about to abate, or sometimes not until afterwards, in retrospect. Like now, I can definitely say that I had quite a bit of depression that first trimester, but at the time I just felt generally miserable in every possible way.

So it kind of crept up on me this time, until the night last week when I was sobbing and snorting over my piles of data. Then it was clear that this was an abnormal mood for me, not just an end of the normal continuum of crankiness. I'm not normally a very sobby person.

Of course, that extreme meant that it was about to break, like a fever. At least that's how it works for me; I don't know about you-all. So I feel a lot more normal the past few days. Although I've still got intermittent insomnia, I'm not fixating on life worries while roaming the house at 3:30 a.m., but eating several bowls of wheat cereal and reading Alice Hoffman novels instead: a much healthier activity.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

37 Weeks. Holy Smokes!

Here's one from last weekend, though the person taking the photo has a camera date that couldn't have been more wrong (unless it would have also said "B.C.E.").

Last night. So, does it look like I've dropped, to you?

This date means that this coming week, the baby will be considered "full term" (38 weeks.) Of course, there's some dithering about how they want to count the weeks: from last menstrual period (LMP)? (Terribly inexact, especially considering that I was tracking my ovulation and actually know what day conception occurred.) Days past ovulation (DPO)? Better, in my opinion, but both counting methods have their practical advantages and disadvantages.

For example, if you're not yet full-term, you can't use the birthing center and have to go over to labor and delivery instead (boo) where they do all kinds of intervention-y stuff whether or not you want it. I recently met a woman (birth instructor and chiropractor in common) who recently had her baby: she went into labor one (1!) day before full-term, so she had to go to labor and delivery anyway after all that planning.

On the other hand, they (meaning medical personnel) get skittish if the baby seems to be taking longer to ripen than the mean (or median or mode--not sure what measure of central tendency they use here) number of weeks/days, so if you go past a certain arbitrary deadline it's more and more likely you'll be induced. (Also boo.) Which is ludicrous and can be harmful unless there are specific things going wrong such as reduced amniotic fluid or weight loss in the baby. (Postdate versus postterm).

So, the upshot is that at this juncture, a few days counting one way or the other can make a huge difference simply because of standardized medical procedures. Now I don't know which date to insist on using, because I don't want to be considered "early" or "late"!

But here's my toss into the Limelet's birthday pool: hows about the 22nd, as that's 40 weeks and it's also the new moon (the conception was on the new moon)?

I have definitely been experiencing outer-toe numbness lately; also my feet feel tender and bruised on the outside edges. I assume this is because my feet are...which is it called--pronated or supinated? The outside edges of my shoes wear out first--there's just a lot more pressure on the edges due to my 50% weight gain (or whatever) and the bones are all squishy. And my sandals squish them mercilessly, when I can squeeze them on.

I had a somewhat low platelet count at last blood draw, so I recently had a new test. Results Wednesday. I feel very healthy and all that, and I'm really not worried about the outcome, except for what it could mean for my treatment. (If your count is too low, it can mean an increased chance of hemorrhage, obviously.)

The baby has been quite stretchy and pokey, especially the heels. I can separately feel the little head wiggling around, the fingers (down by my right hipbone), and the little bum sticks out like a giant bump when the baby's stretching. This is very impressive, when I can get TheLimey to look over before the stretching stops.

We now have an interactive game that we can both play with him/her. (I noticed this morning that I'm beginning to think of the baby as "he" again, but I'm not committing to anything until I see.) I can usually make the baby wake up and stretch or kick by pat-pat-patting on the feet or bum. Even Daddy can play this one. He loves seeing the actual little feet bumps kicking in direct response to his pats, though he's paranoid that the patting will somehow be harmful. Pfff. (I do it all the time, of course.)

Pat-pat-pat ... POIK...POIK-POIK! POIK!

Morse code from Beyond.