Gender

J and I cannot come to an agreement on whether to find out the gender of Poppy Seed.  J wants to know, and I want to be surprised, and that’s as far as we’ve made it in the debate.  J wants to know so that we can refer to the baby as a boy or a girl (we’re keeping names to ourselves until the little one arrives).  I think that there are so few surprises left in life, and this is a good one, and I think that I can actually wait until June/ July to find out and be perfectly content.  So, I guess we have some more thinking to do – or at least convincing.

Even though I want to wait to find out for sure, I do like to take part in the old wive’s tales for fun.  I can’t answer any of the ones on how am I carrying, but here are the ones I do know:

  • The hair on my legs is growing faster during pregnancy – so it’s a boy
  • My feet are colder than they were before pregnancy – so it’s a boy
  • I refuse to eat the heel of a loaf of bread – so it’s a girl (although I’ve always refused to eat the heel of a loaf of bread)
  • J is gaining weight right along with me (although not nearly as much) – so it’s a boy
  • My mother doesn’t have gray hair – so it’s a girl
  • I had morning sickness early in pregnancy (and still do) – so it’s a girl
  • I’m not looking that great during pregnancy – so it’s a girl
  • My boobs, while bigger, haven’t changed all that much – so it’s a boy
  • According to the Chinese gender chart – it’s a girl
  • My pee is a bright neon color – it’s a boy
  • I have cravings for salty and sour foods – it’s a boy
  • I’ve been craving meats and cheeses – it’s a boy

So according to the Old Wive’s tales, I have a 58% chance of having a boy, and a 42% chance of having a girl.  Plus last night I did dream that the baby was a boy.  We will either find out in 9 weeks if J has his way, or in 30 weeks if I have mine.  I guess only time will tell.

Sick

You’d really think I’d know better than to send another message to the universe stating that I don’t throw up all that much anymore.  Maybe I will learn one day not to provoke it with my statements…..

Prune

Dear Poppy Seed –

Another week has passed and you’re now the size of a prune (you would have thought they would have picked a fruit that was less dried up and wrinkly).  At 10 weeks your bones, cartilage and joints are all forming, your fingers and toes are no longer webbed and you even have finger nails and hair!  Even though I can’t feel it yet, you’re moving around in there, getting use to your new joints, fingers and toes.  I can’t wait until I can kiss and tickle them all!  According to “What to Expect,” you were visited by the tooth fairy and your teeth are also forming this week under your gums.  Most of your major organs are now developed and are functioning, and will continue to grow as you do.

I’m tired all the time and feel drained pretty much always.  I also usually always feel queasy and nauseous, but on the bright side the vomiting episodes are happening less and less.  I still wake up 5 to 6 times a night – even with a tylenol pm, and I can’t even begin to explain how frustrating that is.  The most glamorous part is that I’m so gassy.  I feel like I”m always farting or burping (I can even out do your father now =).  I don’t even want to get into the constipation discussion.  Let’s just say that it’s bad, but as I can now keep down my prenatal vitamins it’s starting to get better.  I do have to say that the only thing that’s worse than constipation is when your body decides to no longer be constipated.  I was late for work yesterday because I spent 45 minutes in the bathroom!

4 more weeks and you and I will officially be out of the first trimester!  I can’t wait for that, I’ll definitely breathe a little easier when we pass that mark.  At 14 weeks your dad will make it facebook official (your mom is the last remaining person on earth who doesn’t have or want a facebook profile) and we’ll tell our coworkers and your dad will tell his students.  We’re so excited to meet you and to share the news of your arrival with all of our friends.  Your dad seems to think that we’ll be awesome parents (how can we possibly suck when we already love you so much?) but I do have to admit that I’m nervous and worried about it.  I’m worried that I’m not going to be a good mother, that I won’t know what to do when you cry, that I’m going to screw you up for life.  I want to go on the record now that I only have your best intentions at heart, so when you’re 35 and in therapy I can show you that I really did try my best.  I promise you now that I will try to be the best mother that I can be.  I want to be patient and reasonable in my parenting.  I want us to have fun together.  I want us to have great communication.  I want you to be able to be who you are regardless of my wants and desires for you.  I want you to always know that you’re loved and to never doubt that for a moment – you will always be my baby.  Keep growing and moving and hopefully soon I’ll be able to feel you in there!

– Love Mom

Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving was a crazy holiday.  My sister-in-law was admitted to the hospital on Thanksgiving day.  She has Crohn’s disease and has had increasingly bad flair ups.  Needless to say that J’s parents and his brother didn’t make it to dinner either.  J’s grandparents and uncle came, but left right after dinner so they could get to the hospital.  Thanksgiving dinner was broken down and put into Tupperware almost as soon as it reached the table so that the family at the hospital could have something to eat.  J’s sister is doing much better now, and is scheduled for surgery in two weeks to remove a large portion of her intestines that are inflamed.

On the bright side, my house is spotless with one small exception.  My mom came into town on Monday and pretty much cleaned the house from top to bottom since I’m pretty much a useless lump and J’s work schedule is crazy. The only exception is that after dinner was broken down on Thanksgiving we still haven’t cleaned all the dishes.  We still have a pot that’s been soaking in the sink for about 2 days now.  Maybe I’ll feel up to tackling it when I get home, but as my lunch is trying to work its way back up at the moment I’m kinda doubting that.

I hope that you all had a much better Thanksgiving and that it was peaceful and relaxing!

I Should Know Better

This morning was really good for me.  I woke up without feeling sick, ate breakfast without feeling sick, and wonder of wonders breakfast sat great on my tummy!  I made it to work earlier than I had in two weeks because I didn’t have to lay in bed waiting for the “sick” feeling to pass before I could get ready.  I started to get really hungry around 10:30, but again, just hunger, and no nausea.  I haven’t felt that feeling in….I can’t remember how long.  Because I’m a ding bat and left my snacks and lunch at home, I had to run out and grab lunch.  So I drove to panera.  I just missed their breakfast service, which is what I wanted, so I ordered a sandwich and a fruit cup.

About an hour after I finished eating it, I started to not feel so great, I didn’t think anything of it, I’m pretty used to that feeling.  After three hours of trying to fight the nausea, I lost the battle.  I had to run down the stairs at work, and I started gagging when I reached the bottom of them.  When I got to the women’s bathroom I broke out in a sweat because horrors of horrors…it was in use.  I had to vomit in the men’s bathroom, can we say icky?  It was either that, or throw up all over the floor, or in a really nice guys trash can – and I just can’t bring myself to vomit in front of the whole sales department just yet.  I’m sure one day when both bathrooms are in use that I’ll have to get over that.

I should have known better to make that statement to the universe that my morning sickness was starting to level off.

Olive

Dear Poppy Seed –

This past week you’ve grown to the size of an olive!  At nine weeks along you’re starting to look more and more like an actual person and you’ve graduated from an embryo to a fetus.  Your heart and all its chambers are fully formed, you’re starting to develop teeth, and your tail (though it was cute) is now completely gone.  All of your facial features are there and getting more defined as the days and weeks go by.  You’re also developing muscles, and though they’re tiny at the moment they’ll help you do all the moving and kicking that I’m so looking forward to feeling!

My morning sickness has started to level off, for the most part (knock on wood).  I still have bad days – like this entire past weekend for example.  But I also usually have a string of good days that fall in between the bad ones, so at least there’s that.  My boobs are still super sore.  It hurts to hug people!  I need to invest in a sleep bra.  My boobs are getting too big and heavy to be able to go without one, and sleeping in a regular bra just isn’t comfortable.  Speaking of sleeping…yeah, I really don’t, at least not well.  I wake up at least 5 to 6 times a night and it makes it difficult for me to get any kind of rest.  The RN that I spoke with on Friday told me that I can take Tylenol PM, so I think that I might start doing that and see if I feel more rested in the morning.

The weeks seem to be flying by and pretty soon you and I will be out of the first trimester!  Your dad and I are making all kinds of plans.  Plans for your nursery – your dad wants to follow Jewish tradition and set up the nursery after you’re born.  I think that will frazzle my nerves too much, but I’m still considering it.  Plans for life insurance and a will – so that if anything ever happened you would always be taken care of.  Plans for your birth – we’re taking a tour of a birthing center next week!  We’re planning a last hurrah after Hanukkah this year.  A trip to DC with just me and your dad to celebrate us and our marriage before you get here.  Plans for daycare.  As much as it breaks my heart that I can’t be a stay at home mom for you, I’m going to find you the best possible care so that I don’t have to feel as guilty about not being able to stay home with you.  While your dad and I are busy planning, keep growing and remember that we already love you so much!

– Mom

Decisions Decisions

This past Friday J and I met with the Nurse Practitioner for the OB that I’m seeing.  She was very nice and informative, as was the office.  I felt comfortable the whole time, even when my feet were in stirrups, so bonus there.  The doctor’s visit overall went very well.  They took a very detailed family history, got my weight and BP, did a breast exam, a pelvic exam, an ultrasound, tried to use a Doppler to hear the heart beat (we couldn’t hear anything though) and drew 7 vials of blood.  J and I made the decision to schedule an NT Scan.  This checks to see the likelihood of the baby having down syndrome as well as trisomy 21.  I still need to call my insurance company to make sure that they cover it though.

We also had a chance to ask the NP questions – and this is the part of the appointment where I started to get nervous

What’s the doctor’s C-Section percentage?
What’s the office’s C-Section percentage?

  • The NP didn’t know the doctor’s or offices C-Section rate, but she said that the hospital where I would be delivering has a 50% C-Section rate.  That seems overly high to me, and I cannot stress enough how much I do not want a C-Section.  The recovery time on them is super long compared to a vaginal birth and I don’t want to under go major surgery if I don’t have to.

Will they let me go two weeks past my due date before they induce?

  • No.  Only one.

What’s their opinion of a drug free / intervention free birth?

  • Most of their patients do not go this route.  Most of them receive an epidural.  I was told that I could have a natural birth if I wanted, but intervention free would probably not happen.

What percentage of their patients receive pitocin?

  • I forgot to ask this one, but I assume if most of their patients get epidurals, that most if not all receive pitocin.  I was told that they wouldn’t hook me up to anything without my knowledge and consent though, but I’m not sure how much I believe that.

Will they let my labor progress naturally without interventions as long as we’re both doing fine? Even if it’s 16 hours in the second stage of labor?

  • No.  As long as things are progressing in a timely manner I can have a mostly intervention free birth, but if things slow down or stop they will intervene.

Will they let me push on my own without being coached?

  • I forgot to ask this as well, but I assume yes, as they can’t make me push when they say “Push!”

Will they allow me to not have an IV, so I can walk around, or bounce on a ball as much as I like?

  • No.  I will be hooked up to an IV as soon as I get there.  The IV will be a saline or glucose solution.  This makes me nervous as I’ve read a lot of birth stories of nurses coming into the room and hooking the women up to pitocin or other drugs without saying a word.

Will they let me be in labor over 24 hours after my water’s broken?

  • I forgot to ask this one too.  But I assume they’re like most practices and give a women 24 hours to pop a baby out or they head the C-Section route.

How often does the doctor / the practice perform episiotemies?

  • I didn’t ask this, mostly because  I was getting disheartened by the other news.

Is a water birth an option?  Are there tubs in the birthing suites?

  • No.

So, I have some thinking to do, but honestly I think my mind is already made up.  If I don’t deliver with this OB practice, then I’m going to go with a birthing center that’s in Chapel Hill.  My only concern with this is the fact that it’s an hour and fifteen minutes away from my house as well as where I work.  I need to talk to J some more about it, but I’m really heavily leaning towards the birthing center.  I think that my overall experience there will be better than a hospital.  The birthing center’s C-Section rate is extremely low, something like 2 out of every 500 women.  They are located right next to a hospital in case things do go down hill.  Most women who go the birthing center route  do not tear or have episiotemies because the nurses and midwives help message and stretch you so it doesn’t happen – this is a practice that most hospitals don’t do.  I feel that the baby and I would be better taken care of at the birthing center, and my body would be able to do what it wants to do and what’s natural for it do it, and I really like that.