Now Progesterone-Free

August 31, 2007

Today is my first full day without having that extra progesterone in my system.  I can’t tell any difference yet.  Of course, the only way I’d expect to feel a difference would be going into labor.  Obviously that hasn’t happened yet.  M and I were discussing this last night, and we decided the next few days (or weeks) will be a good test of how much my body really depended on those shots.  If I go into labor this weekend, then most likely the progesterone was mostly what kept me from having BabyN weeks ago.  If BabyN sticks around for a week or more, then my body probably was capable of carrying him to term without the extra help.  I know it’s not really as cut-and-dry as that, but it’s turned into a little bet we have going.  I’m the one who thinks the progesterone did more than we thought it did–although that might just be wishful thinking and that BabyN comes sooner rather than later.

I’m getting “mommy brain” bad already.  I remember how bad it was after PJ was born.  I was flakier than I’ve ever been, and it drove me crazy that I had no logic in my brain and couldn’t recall many simple vocabulary words.  For someone who’s always been kind of proud of her intellect, this sudden ditziness was horrible.  And it’s starting already with this pregnancy.  I keep finding myself searching for that perfect word, which truly is usually something remarkably simple.  I also feel like my blog posts get kind of cryptic sometimes because I can’t express myself in words the same way I can in my own brain.  Poor M; not only does he have to deal with my fragile emotional state, but he also has to interpret what on earth I could possibly mean when I have these brain farts.

My mom and I talked for a long time yesterday afternoon, a lot about possible plans for when BabyN comes.  Because of her work schedule and her other absences from school to see the other babies in the family, it’s going to be tricky for her to plan a trip down here.  If, however, BabyN decides to make his appearance at the perfect time, she’d like to be in the delivery room for the event.  I’d already asked her to ages ago, and as time has gone on, she’s more and more excited about the possibility.  Unfortunately, my father doesn’t quite understand this desire.  My mom is worried that when I call to say we’re on our way to the hospital, my dad won’t rush to leave the house to try to make the four (or so)-hour drive to make it in time for the birth.  He doesn’t understand the same rushed feeling that she will have.  So she wants me to call my dad and try to explain this to him.  First of all, the odds of BabyN coming on that one perfect day when they could come right away are slim to none.  I don’t really want to have to make that awkward of a call to plan something that most likely won’t happen.  But if I did, how do I explain that to my dad?  As I mentioned yesterday, he’s so left-brained that I question sometimes whether he even has emotions buried underneath all that logic.  This is entirely an emotional subject, and one that requires him to think about all those personal things about his daughter that he tries to avoid (just ask about the time he had to pick up breast pads for me at the store).  I’m still trying to make the decision about whether or not to intercede in this matter for my mom.  The only problem is that I know if I decide not to bother, BabyN will most certainly decide to come at that perfect time for my mom to make it here for the birth.

Shift in Focus

August 30, 2007

I just got home from the doctor a few minutes ago.  It’s obvious that the focus has changed from worrying about the Braxton-Hicks and trying to keep BabyN in to making sure everything’s fine for him to get out.  I had both an ultrasound and a cervical check today.  He is head-down (I was only mildly worried that wasn’t the case) and a pretty average size, from what she could tell.  I’m still closed too.  I was hoping that wasn’t the case, but at least that means she’s not too concerned about imminent labor.  Of course, we all know that can change very quickly.  I’m hoping that’s what I end up doing.

The biggest difference was that I did not get a progesterone shot.  I am now relying fully on my own body to do what it needs to do whenever.  It’s been twelve weeks since that has been the case, so it feels a little weird.  I’m hoping my body reacts by going into labor in the next few days.

My newest worry is about motherhood, especially of two little boys.  BabyN is going to be normal most likely, at least compared to PJ, and I don’t know whether I’m going to end up giving more attention to PJ because of the memory of his birth and early days or more to BabyN because he will be the dream baby.  If either one happens, I’m guessing it will be the first.  But in reality, I know that once we’ve spent some time around both boys together, it will come naturally to parent them fairly, giving each the amount of attention that he needs.  I know that the worries I have now are typical second-baby fears and will only go away with experience.  Unfortunately, just like all these crazy hormones right now, acknowledging something I know rationally to be true doesn’t control my emotions about it.

Totally off topic, my dad is coming to visit on Sept. 20, staying the night on his way home from a business trip.  It is entirely likely that he will be the first grandparent to see BabyN.  If you knew my dad, you would understand why that is kind of amusing.  Both grandmas dote on their grandkids (as you might expect), sometiimes to the point of being excessive, and even M’s dad is pretty good around babies, due to his well-hidden soft side.  My dad is way too left-brained to be a natural around babies, and he holds them awkwardly, like he isn’t exactly sure what to do with this fragile, spit-uppy thing in his arms.  This is going to be hilarious for him to get to be the first to hold his second grandson.  My MIL will be sooooo jealous!  I’m taking lots of pictures of that event for sure!

So You Don’t Worry

August 30, 2007

Still here.  Still pregnant.  I’ll write more after my doctor’s appointment this afternoon.  Keep your fingers crossed for good news, especially of the get-the-baby-out sort.

More Preggie Dreams

August 29, 2007

I dreamed last night that I had somewhere moderately fancy to go–like church or something–and couldn’t find anything I could wear.  The only maternity clothes that still fit were entirely too casual.  And of course I was overreacting to the whole situation, way too upset.  In fact, the other parts of the dream I remember all include me either freaking out or crying as well.  It’s a pretty accurate view of my mental state these days, feeling huge and weepy.  (By the way, in the dream my brother was super short and had married a midget.  How weird is that?)

PJ has started being more cuddly than I can remember him every choosing to be.  I wonder if he’s starting to pick up all of my hints about the new baby coming soon and is getting clingy now that he knows things are changing.  It doesn’t bother me; I love getting to hold him.  It’s not quite as much fun when he wants me to just carry him around–this kid is gaining weight like I am these days–but I do it as much as I can anyway, just to enjoy my only baby boy for the remainder of the time he is my only.

Still no action going on in that stubborn uterus of mine, other than the standard Braxton-Hicks I’ve grown so used to.  Tomorrow I have another doctor’s appointment.  I might just make it to the appointment after all.  I’m guessing tomorrow night or Friday we do what we can to get BabyN out of there.  I’m thinking we should walk to a nearby Mexican food restaurant, where I chow down on anything with jalapenos (and then Tums), then walk home to have a wild night with M.  (By the way, Emily, I would try Indian food instead, but there’s just so much good Mexican food around here.  As in, I could walk next door–to either neighbor–to get authentic Mexican food.  I don’t even know where I’d find an Indian restaurant around here.)  I’m still taking other suggestions too.  Even if you’ve just heard of a friend of a friend’s technique, I want to hear it.  I really don’t want a long drawn-out labor that usually results from a medical induction, and I want even less to have to wait until my doctor gets to the point where she feels comfortable doing one.

Stares and Whispers

August 28, 2007

Last night I went to the grocery store with M and PJ.  A couple of months ago, the walking started to be too much for me, and that in combination with the excessive Braxton-Hicks kept me from going ever since.  It became a daddy-boy chore.  But last night I was hoping that maybe a little extra walking, if I could manage the discomfort, might just do the trick to help BabyN decide to come just a bit sooner.  (No such luck.)

Anyway, I’d completely forgotten what kind of attention a nine-month-pregnant woman can attract.  The funniest happened within a few minutes of arriving.  A family just ahead of us down the bread aisle had a young girl, probably about six years old.  I noticed her glancing behind her several times–in our direction–and then whisper something to her mother as they walked away.  The mom then looked back and whispered back to her daughter.  My instant reaction was wondering why she couldn’t be more open in her admiration of PJ.  After all, he is usually the one in the family who gets all the attention.  Then I remembered my huge belly.  I wasn’t sure whether to be pleased at the look or embarrassed that the mother would have to explain to the little girl about why I was so fat.

A minute later I had to turn around to look for something, and as I did I noticed one of the employees walking past the end of the aisle.  She was a dwarf.  Then it hit me.  I doubt the little girl cared about my cute kid or my huge belly.  The hushed conversation between daughter and mother was most fitting for a truly unique sight, something that a little boy and pregnant mom couldn’t possibly be.  I felt silly, of course, for thinking we could attract that kind of attention.  At least I can laugh at myself, right?

I’m still hoping that after Thursday, when I don’t get a progesterone shot, things move quickly and BabyN comes over the weekend.  But I’m already growing so impatient.  Last night I was looking up “natural” ways to induce labor.  I’m not willing to do anything invasive at all, only things that will do nothing more than encourage my body to go ahead and go into labor if it’s ready.  Walking, of course, and sex fit into that category.  Herbal supplements do not–yet.  Do any of you have other good suggestions I should try?  I’m not giving up on the other two yet, but I’d like to do as much as possible to get things moving.

Annoying Phone Call

August 27, 2007

We ate out again last night, and the fast food fries gave me the worst gas.  I’ve been in pain all morning, which is tons of fun while trying to take care of a kid at the same time.  Oh, and I took an anti-gas pill early this morning and it has done very little to control the gas pain.  You know that sharp pain when you have way too much gas and it keeps moving around (painfully of course) and never decides to escape.  It’s way more fun when the baby starts kicking at the gas too.

I had an interesting/annoying experience last night right before eating too.  Before we left to pick up food, M had noticed his phone was totally dead, so he plugged it in to charge while we were gone.  We joked about what a shame it was that we couldn’t talk to his parents while we were gone, but that at least I had my phone so that if they had to get in touch with us, they could.  Sure enough, about two minutes after we walk in our door with the food, my phone rang.  It was my MIL.  She’d called M and when he didn’t answer, she thought we were headed to the hospital or something.  Did she think we wouldn’t call her if that was the case?  That we would simply avoid her phone calls altogether?  And if so, then why would I answer mine, the one who would be in a lot of pain at the time?

Anyway, once she found out we were fine, she proceeded to whine about what’s going on currently in her job drama and about the first day of school today.  Even after I mentioned I had food waiting to be eaten, she continued to whine for another five minutes.  I was just glad I’d gotten food in front of PJ while she was talking so that he wasn’t screaming for food at the same time.  I was way more annoyed about the whole phone call than I let on to M.  I think it was mostly that she made up some stupid excuse to call me when M didn’t answer, so I ended up being the target of her whining, which I suspect was the real reason she was calling.

Everything is still going fine baby-wise.  It sucks.  I’m so ready to just get this baby out.  I thought for a second yesterday that I’d lost my mucous plug, but then I realized I was probably wrong (I’ll spare you the gory details).  It was disappointing.  I’m 36 weeks according to the doctor today, and tomorrow I unofficially hit full-term.  Considering I never thought I’d make it anywhere near this long, I’m ready already.  M and I even went against doctor’s orders last night and did what we could to evict BabyN.  Obviously my body isn’t ready, though, because he’s still hanging out there today.  Maybe after Thursday, when my body doesn’t get its expected shot of progesterone, it will decide it’s time.  I hope so, because I’m getting very impatient–obviously.

Tired and Cranky

August 26, 2007

I’m still here and still pregnant.  I don’t have a lot to write about today.  I’m still super emotional and exhausted.  I feel like I could sleep all day long and still be tired.  It didn’t help that PJ woke me up early today, and M was sleeping too soundly to get up with him.  I need a nap something awful this afternoon.  By the way, how come when I nap, it’s usually while PJ naps, yet when M naps, it’s always when PJ is awake and hyper?  It seems like even on weekends, I’m still doing the majority of the PJ care.  I really hate playing the martyr and sacrificing for my family, especially when I know it makes me a grouch to lose sleep like that.

And that’s where the emotions come into play.  They’re worse from lack of sleep, and since the lack of sleep can be directly blamed on either PJ or M, they seem to be targets of the short temper and wild emotions.  I’m finding it hard not to throw passive-agressive comments M’s way all the time.  But I also can’t be direct with him and tell him that it drives me crazy that he gets to nap through PJ’s most energetic period of the day or sleep late in the morning while I only sleep when PJ sleeps anymore.  And any time now, that will change to only sleeping when both PJ and BabyN sleep.

(Hehe.  That’s hilarious.  M just asked if I was blogging, specifically complaining about him.  I told him that yeah, I was.  He laughed, sure that if I answered yes that it wasn’t true.  I feel a little guilty now.)

Of course, I know that M really isn’t doing anything wrong, and it shouldn’t bother me when he sleeps.  It’s just jealousy that he doesn’t feel the same sense of obligation to PJ and reluctance to just assume he can leave PJ in someone’s care other than his own.  I need to get over that thought now because I remember it caused a lot of problems early on after PJ came home from the hospital.  But just because I can identify the problem as my own, that doesn’t mean I can easily change my attitude about it and make all the problems go away.  And now I’m just rambling.  Sorry for trying to work through this here.  But hey, only the three-ish of you who read blogs on the weekend will suffer through it anyway, right?

False Alarm

August 25, 2007

Yesterday at about 1 in the afternoon, I started getting frequent Braxton-Hicks.  I kept a decent count for a few hours and was having between six and seven per hour.  That’s technically when I’m supposed to head to the hospital.  But they started tapering off later in the afternoon, so I sadly accepted that yesterday was not the day and tried to relax.

They picked back up shortly before M got home from work.  I started writing them down to make sure I was keeping a close track of what I was feeling.  An hour later, I’d had thirteen contractions.  They were normal Braxton-Hicks, though, not at all painful, so I decided to wait to go to the hospital until they were painful.  Each hour I kept track, they tapered off just a bit more.  Finally about 10:00, I figured they weren’t the start of labor and I gave up for the day.

BabyN is still comfortably inside my belly today–well, comfortable for him maybe, but not for me.  After all that excitement and counting contractions all afternoon, I was disappointed that nothing happened.  I figured it was too good to be true anyway.  The timing was too perfect.  No child is that cooperative from birth on.

By the way, if you’re thinking I should have gone to the hospital anyway since those are the doctor’s instructions, I still think I did the right thing by staying home.  The main point of going so early, when I’m unsure whether it’s labor, would be to prevent me from progressing any further in the labor.  In other words, several weeks ago when they were afraid I would go into pre-term labor, they would want me there as soon as possible to stop the labor before BabyN made an appearance.  Now they would go ahead and let me deliver, so there’s no point going as early.  If I’d called, I would probably have been told to labor at home a while longer anyway.  It’s a complete change in perspective.

Since I truly am right at the end now, and labor can happen at any time, I’ll try to make a real effort to blog a little something every day just so you guys will be able to guess what has happened if I don’t blog for a whole day.  Barring any technical difficulties, I’ll be here every day until I go to the hospital.  Even then, with any luck they’ll have a wireless network.  I may be checking your blogs during labor. 🙂  I might not live-blog my labor (hehe), but I’ll try to let you know it’s happened as soon after as I can.  If you’re at all like I am, it will drive you crazy if I just disappear for a few days, even if you think you know what happened.

The End Days…of Pregnancy

August 24, 2007

Nope, I’m not at the hospital in labor right now, but there’s a lot of time left in the day.  Still, I’m starting to think I was wrong about today being THE DAY.  It’s too bad.  This may be the only chance until late in September that my mom would be able to make it for the birth.  She didn’t make it for PJ’s, so I was really hoping she could make it this time.  It saddens me that apparently I have to give birth with only my husband around yet again.  And regardless of whether my MIL is there at the time, she is not going to be present during the actual birth.

So I was checking my family blog this morning and noticed that the pregnancy ticker had moved into the last month.  Can you believe I’m in my ninth month?  I certainly can’t.  I’ll unofficially be 37 weeks on Tuesday, so BabyN could really come any day now, especially after Tuesday.  The thought kind of surprises me, despite being worried about giving birth early for weeks now, but it doesn’t really scare me.  I know this time there shouldn’t be any worry about him being born healthy and there isn’t a lengthy NICU stay in our future.

So far, my experiences with the ninth month have not been fun.  My initiation into these end days started when I turned off the light to sleep shortly after midnight last night.  I noticed almost immediately that my legs were starting to ache, and the pain just got worse and worse, no matter what I did to try to help things.  My belly was uncomfortable, too–probably from overeating at our celebration dinner–and the accompanying gas made me somewhat miserable.  As 2:00 in the morning neared, I finally gave up and tried walking around the house some to at least help the achy legs problem.  I checked e-mail and blogs and finally returned to bed at 2:30.  I still had problems falling asleep after that, but at least I finally did at that point.  Please tell me that all month won’t be like this.  I don’t do well when I’m suffering from insomnia, and PJ needs more attention than ever right now.

Oh, and guess what I realized last night?  I was looking at some of my favorite winter clothes hanging in my closet and wondering how they would be for nursing this winter.  And it was like I automatically knew already, like I remembered, not guessed.  Sure enough, it was just last winter when PJ was finishing up nursing.  If you remember, I weaned him the same week in January I found out I was pregnant (which means I’ve been either pregnant or nursing since March 2005…poor M).  That also means that this will be the third winter in a row that I’ve been nursing, and with any luck, I’ll have one more winter after that that my boobs will be on loan (I’m hoping to breastfeed for somewhere between a year and eighteen months).  How crazy is that?

A Great Day

August 23, 2007

I can’t help myself.  I have to blog again today, despite what I said earlier.  I have little news from the doctor’s appointment, as I figured.  She didn’t even do a check today because nothing had really changed from last week.  I managed to talk her into agreeing that this would be my last progesterone shot, though.  There’s enough discrepancy about the dates, and either way, next week is close enough to full term that she’s okay with foregoing that last shot.  Oh, and the weird reactions I’ve been getting make it just a little easier to give up.

But the craziest part of the appointment happened while we were discussing whether this would be the last shot.  She outright told me that if I went into labor today even, she wouldn’t try to stop it.  Even though I’d already expected that to be the case, it really hit home when she said so.  I really could go into labor at any moment now.  BabyN is really on his way, and soon.  Crazy!

Still, the doctor’s appointment isn’t what makes the day great.  The most exciting news of the day has to do with M.  Now bear with me because this may sound more complicated than it really is.  He writes computer programs, using a fairly complicated programming language.  Not very many people can program in it at all, and fewer are any good at it.  M is good at it.  The company that writes the programming language (that you would all recognize if I told you the name) has developed three tests of increasing difficulty to qualify for three levels of certification.  Obviously having these certifications makes you that much more valuable and employable to work with this programming language.  There are exactly two people in our large city who have the highest certification level.  There are maybe 20 in the whole state, and it’s the state with the headquarters of the people who developed the language.  M is officially now one of them, the people with the highest certification.

When he went out of town a few weeks ago, one of the things he did at the conference was take the test for this certification.  He was given some statistics about the pass rate, and he was given no chance of passing.  Nobody who fit his profile ever passed on the first try, and few pass on the second try.  M broke all their statistics by passing with flying colors the first–and only–time.  I think he might just be in line for a raise.  And if not, we might look into better paying jobs elsewhere; he can get hired anywhere he wants with that certification on his resume.

I am so proud of my husband.  Is that obvious?  I hope PJ and BabyN inherit at least a tiny bit of their father’s genius.  I also hope M agrees to let me do something to help him celebrate tonight.  And I hope the rest of the day goes at least as well as the first part has!