Tuesday, May 31, 2011

My Life in Print

I've seen the title of this book out for weeks now and laughed but didn't think much of it. Then I saw this link of the audio version. It's more hilarious than I initially gave it credit for and I can so relate. Heaven knows I've muttered a few of these lines myself. At least I am not alone!

Monday, May 30, 2011

The Path to Crazytown

Mom and I sewed like a couple of sweatshop wage-earners yesterday and got almost the whole baby’s room done. It was amazing how much we got done in a day. However, I came (limped) home feeling the consequences. My cold had worsened and my right hip felt like it’d been transplanted from the Tin Man by the time we were done. I left Amelia to sleep there because we’d gone too late and it seemed silly to keep her up only to rush home to bed. Thankfully, this allowed me to sleep in a bit and get a more sound rest for today.

Showed up at Mom’s around lunch time already feeling like a zombie. I could hardly keep my head up during lunch so I decided that maybe I’d take a nap with Amelia. She sleeps in a grownup bed there and we were both exhausted so I thought it would be the perfect opportunity for a snuggle nap! She was way excited so we went straight to naptime.

Every time I closed my eyes, she’d talk or whisper or something annoying. When I told her to close her eyes, she actually fell asleep for a minute before remembering that I was there and promptly snapped her little eyelids up again. After half an hour of trying to cuddle her tight enough to keep her from fidgeting and telling her to keep her eyes closed, I turned my back on her to fall asleep. Just as I started to doze and get those crazy thoughts that aren’t quite dreams but aren’t quite conscious, she’d say something to snap me out of it. “be quiet!” Dozzzzze. Poke. “Amelia don’t poke me and go to sleep.” Dooooozzze snooooorrrre. Poke. “knock it off or I am going to have to leave.” “No Mama, I want to take a nap with you. “Then GO TO SLEEP!” Doooozzzze. Snooooorrrre. Drooooool. Poke.

“Okay. I need to leave you alone so you can get some sleep. I’ve seen you rolling your eyes in the back of your head and I am obviously keeping you up.” Crying. Tears. Begging. “Don’t leave Mama!!” “Get some sleep, sweetie.”


Stomp downstairs and throw self on recliner. Close eyes. Begin to doze. Crazy thoughts. Sleep?


Stomp upstairs. “WHAT IS WRONG?!”

“You left your sunglasses in here. You need to take them out.”

“Really? That’s what you’re screaming about?”

“Take them out of here.”

Back downstairs muttering various curses. Throw self on recliner. Close eyes.

Repeat above scenario three more times (substituting sunglasses for any other stupidfuckingreason she can’t sleep). Also substitute my mom for me in going upstairs because Grammy was worried that I’d kill the grandbaby.

On third run upstairs and over an hour and no sleep, I said, “Just bring her down. She’s obviously not sleeping so I’ll just take her home.”

In the next 20 minutes, insert five meltdowns around getting dressed, picking up toys, and going potty. One timeout.

In the car for home. She falls asleep 10 minutes later. Shit. Shit shit SHIT. Areyoufuckingkiddingme?! When we get home, I empty out the car before scooping up the sleeping child. Bring her inside, still asleep. She wakes up the second I try to put her in bed. Awesome.

Between dinner, bath, and bedtimes, insert at least another 5-10 meltdowns—including one over my not attaching the dustpan low enough on the broom. Oh yes. Real tears and snot bubbles and everything. Over the dustpan.

So let’s recap so far. No nap. Mama’s exhausted and sick and now dealing with an exhausted child who, because she didn’t nap, is more needy, whiny, and difficult than ever. At least bedtime should go easy right? No fighting from a tired baby! Right? RIGHT?!


Getting to bed included a few more meltdowns because you know, a cupboard was open in the kitchen. Seriously. Goodnight. I love you. Sweet dreams. See you in the morning. Blah. Blah.

Finally. ME time. Collapse into rocker with laptop to surf until a reasonable bed time (does 8 count??). Five minutes later, “WAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH” I tried to ignore it and let her work it out so it doesn’t turn into a game of back and forth—a game that we play all too often. “poooooo poooooooooo!!!!!” Yeah. She stands and her door and cries instead of just going to the bathroom by herself. I tell her to go to the potty. She comes stumbling out and I tell her to come sit with me. She climbs into my lap and lays on my chest. Sweet, I think. I’ll take this chance to just let her fall asleep on my chest. Heaven knows she won’t have the chance again soon. Ten minutes of sweet snuggles and rocking. . . and waiting. “Sweetie, do you want to fall asleep in mama’s arms tonight?”  “Yeah.” She pulls my arms around her and snuggles in.

Fifteen minutes later, not sleeping. “Okay babygirl. I think you need to go to bed so you can sleep.”

“No mama. I want to sleep in your arms and rocking.”

“Okay, but just a few more minutes or you’ll need to go to bed by yourself okay?”

See? I am trying here. Do you SEE me trying again and again to be positive and caring and not evil mama?

Two minutes later. “Mama. I really need to get some rest. I can’t sit here with you. I’m really tired today. I didn’t take a nap today.” Pushes away from me and goes to bed.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Pregnant and Paranoid

Part of pregnancy is the inevitable rise of crazy, irrational fears that begin to crowd their way into your regular, more functional thoughts. As the third trimester trucks on, these thoughts find their way into every part of your day. . . and night. They come in flooding emotional outbursts, in nightmares, in panic attacks, and generic meltdowns alike.

These days, paranoid thoughts are certainly threatening to put me in the mental ward. Here are the things making me crazy.

We are about to ruin Amelia’s life.  It’s true that we originally wanted another child essentially as a gift to Amelia. We wanted her to have a shared experience with another and someone with whom she could find comfort as an adult. And yet, I just keep thinking that when she realizes that a whole babychild is here, she is going to be so disappointed. I actually predict that she’ll be great and loving and helpful with the baby. But sharing her parents? Dogs? Toys? Everything? She’s been the center of our obsessions for over three years. All alone. And he we are, turning her life upside down with another child that we shall love as much as HER?! That just has to hurt to the core for such a little kid. My brother was 4 when I was born and he still talks about my birth with bitterness and regret. I am positive that he believes to this day that his life would’ve been so much better had my parents stopped with him. What if Amelia feels like that too???

I can’t possibly love this baby as much as I love Amelia. I know that a lot of people fear that they just don’t know how their hearts can fit the love of another child. I have faith that your heart just grows to include the next baby. There isn’t a limit to the love we have. BUT Amelia’s got a three year start on her baby sister. The amount of thought, time, and energy that has gone into loving Amelia has been all-encompassing since the moment I met her. This new babygirl will never get the same. To her disadvantage, we already have a child who will continue requiring attention (if not completely increase the demand). Every little thing about her will not be a wonder to me the way it was with Amelia because we’ve already HAD Amelia! She won’t get her own clothes, shoes, toys, books, or parents. They will all come to her filtered by the use of her older sister. This blog is the perfect example. New Baby will never have her very own blog. She will get lumped into her sister’s tale.  And to add to the above paranoid thought, Amelia will lose her own blog. Lose lose.

This baby won’t be healthy. When you have one child and that child is born healthy, functional, and beautiful, you realize that you’ve struck gold. That you rolled the dice of fate and won. To test fate for a second time and expect all to go well seems to me naive at best and completely foolish at worst. What makes us think we could be lucky enough to get another healthy baby? And wouldn’t it just figure that you finally give in to having another baby and worry completely about how to care for two only to find out that the second has special needs? I really don’t know if I trust my own luck that much. And heaven knows that if this pregnancy is any indication, this poor baby will be born sick. (Update: A week into summer relaxation time and I’m SICK AGAIN GODAMMIT.)  We had a tough time with Amelia as a baby, but she was ultimately healthy.

This girl will be the opposite of Amelia in every way. Isn’t that the rule of parenting? You get used to one kid and then the other kid destroys everything you thought you knew. Now, if this baby is the opposite of her sister as a baby, I would be forever grateful. However, I’ve always considered the work we put in with Amelia as an infant set up for good toddler karma. Despite the fact that I’ve come close to killing her a few times lately, Amelia really is an amazing little kid. She is sweet, sensitive, funny, bright, and well behaved. The most oft-repeated comment I get from her teachers is “She is just soooo sweet. Is she always like that?!”  She really is just a sweetie. She’s never been destructive or loud or anything that would bug me too much. What if this baby is an easy infant and then a terror kid? What if she’s fearless and a daredevil who doesn’t listen to her parents? What if she hates books or cuddling? What if she doesn’t communicate well or screams in the grocery store? What if she just isn’t as likeable?

I won’t recover. My body has felt permanent repercussions of carrying and delivering Amelia. Most notably, my back feels destroyed by the c-section and my core strength never returned after having everything moved around in surgery. Will the destruction be the same? I’m guessing it will be worse. Will I never feel like the person I was before in terms of physical ability?

I can’t mother two. I have no idea how anyone manages more than one child. Amelia takes up my whole day and all of my energy. The thought of adding a newborn, breastfeeding baby to that equation seems impossible. I’m not exaggerating. I honestly have not one idea how I will manage. Justin is gone for work 14 hours a day. How will I manage two children through the entire day and evening? What could possibly be left of me when the day is over?  When Amelia was a newborn, I would count the hours until Justin got home and that was when he got home at THREE in the afternoon. It was just at my breaking point of the day too. Just the thought of getting Amelia ready for school with a lunch and backpack and clothed, making myself presentable enough to drop her off, and loading up both girls into the car makes me tired. Not to mention, taking care of the baby all day and then doing it all again to pick Amelia up, come home, and get dinner, bath, and bedtime taken care of for both babychildren. Impossible. Add in long, sleepless nights and I think this fear is completely rational. I can’t possibly be a good, present mother when life is impossible.

This baby will have reflux and colitis. I know that if this child has the same problems as Amelia, we would be much better armed with treatment options and survival tactics. I’ll have the advantage of knowing that it’s temporary and that she will still grow and someday be healthy—something that we really had no perspective on with Amelia. However, if we find out that this baby has the same problems, I will just fall apart and cry. CRY until the tears can’t cry anymore. Add a screaming, inconsolable baby to the above fear and get the straight jacket ready.

This baby won’t have any problems and will sleep great. I hardly even dare to think this is possible considering my luck, but I know that if this baby is . . . okay . . . I will finally have a normal baby experience. And then I will have to come to terms with how traumatic my first-time-mothering experience really was. I’m not sure I want to face all of that. . . but don’t get me wrong. I’m willing to try. That’s why it’s an irrational fear.

She won’t breastfeed.  For all the struggles we had, Amelia ate like a champ. She loved to nurse and we were a very compatible nursing team. She never took chunks of my nipples with her and didn’t graze a lot.  Amelia and her first year converted me to a breastfeeding believer. It became an important part of her and my health and such a pivotal part of my mothering experience. Going into the second time, it’s the one thing that I feel fairly comfortable with. . . and yet, I have this terrible fear that this baby won’t do it. That she won’t latch or will refuse the boob or will just destroy my boobs to the point of halting production or just won’t do it. Whereas I wouldn’t have disappointed if it didn’t work out the first time, I would be crushed if it didn’t work out this time.

I’m going to lose Amelia. Just by the nature of our schedules, this pregnancy, and continued illness, Amelia and Justin have spent a lot more time together than before. We basically have a mommy part of the week and then a daddy half. As a result, Amelia and Justin have gotten very close. I love watching their relationship strengthen and begin to resemble the one her and I have.  However, one of my very biggest fears is that the relationship Amelia and I have will never be the same once this baby is born. She will inevitably spend more time with her daddy as a nursing mommy and baby are fairly inseparable. Her and I will just physically be unable to have the same relationship.  If I have a c-section, I won’t be able to pick her up, snuggle with her too much, or tend to her either. I am absolutely terrified that the baby, though adding something amazing to our family, will detract from my closeness with Amelia. Her and I are so very close I just can’t imagine what it will be like for either of us to have another baby in the picture. I know that our relationship will change to adapt, but the thought of it changing at all . . . breaks my heart. And the truth is, it will never be the same. She’ll never be my only child, my only daughter again.  It just hurts to think about losing this 3-year love affair we’ve had to any change or adjustment. And what if sharing the baby with mommy is traumatic for her and she just turns to her daddy as a replacement?

What if we don’t know anything? There should be some advantage to having the second child in that you’ve already had one. But what if everything we know turns out to be useless on this baby? What if it’s like starting all over? What if we have absolutely no skill or memory or ability to care for this baby? What if NOTHING we know works?
What if she comes too early and has to stay in the NICU? I always said that the saving grace with Amelia’s birth was that she was big and healthy enough to come home. I honestly don’t know what I would do if I had to leave the hospital and not take my baby! Amelia’s birth was tough but had a positive outcome. What if it actually goes worse this time?
What if I never get well again? Now about a month or so away from birth, I’m still sick. This means that I’ve been ill for essentially this entire pregnancy. But what if it has nothing to do with the pregnancy? What if I finally get relief from no longer being pregnant only to continue being ill. . . AND taking care of two children? I thought I was in the clear once school got out and the sun stayed warm, but here I sit, sick and desperate for relief. And worrying that I will never remember wellness again.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

31 Week Update

The doctor did an ultrasound to get a clear idea of Baby’s position last week. While most babies would still have plenty of time to move into birthing position, babies in a bicornuate uterus are most likely in their final position by this point. Oddly enough, BabyGirl had moved! All of a sudden, I’d noticed that her kicks were not where they were previously. I kept telling Justin (lucky dog) that I had crazy pressure on my pelvis and bladder. Maybe (maybe? MAYBE?!) she was head down? I don’t know. Quite frankly, it was a total mystery by the time we got to the ultrasound.

Well, it took exactly one second of ultrasound for the doctor to say, “breech!” Unlike Amelia, who was technically ‘transverse’ (read: completely sideways), this baby did in fact move from her previous position but not necessarily to the right position. ha. Well, she tried! She’s in the ‘frank breech’ position, which is the classic, butt-down breech position. You know, like this


She’s not quite as folded up as this picture indicates because her head is off to the side, under my right rib and her feet then are over on the left between my hips and ribs. So her body goes from my rib down to my pelvis and the legs go up to the other side. This is much different than Amelia, who stretched across my ribs from head to butt.

What does it mean?

It’s good news and bad news. The bad news is that if she stays where she is now, she will be undeliverable vaginally and require surgery. In fact, we’ve already schedule the surgery for 38 weeks just in case I make it that far. It’s bad news because breech babies have their own complications, most specifically with hip development. There’s some good news too! First, so far, I actually think Baby’s position is more comfortable than Amelia’s was. I’m not really wide across, so Amelia’s little body stretching across my ribs was horribly painful in the end. Beyond uncomfortable, I cried just from sheer pain in the last weeks with A. This baby is not in the right position, but at least still lying up and down rather than side to side. We are supposed  to carry our babies lengthwise because we are longer than we are wide. So that’s good. And since she’s moved to this current position, the deep bruise I had in my uterus and side from her heels pressing me is getting a lot better. Yeah, that sucked. My big discomfort with this position is that she is literally sitting on my pelvic area and bladder. I am quite certain that I am going to piss myself at some point before this is over and/or my crotch is going to BREAK under the weight. (seriously, how do they cast a broken crotch?) Back to the good news.  Another really good thing about this position—as opposed to Amelia’s—is that if her butt stays down, labor is potentially a lot less dangerous than it was the first time. Her bottom would prevent tiny parts and/or the umbilical cord from coming out in the event of cervical dilation. Little parts and cord coming out are crazy dangerous and with a quick labor, add a level of panicked rush to get to the hospital that was seriously stressing me out. We’d need to get to the hospital pretty quick regardless if I were in labor, but not in the same way as we would if the baby was feet down. That is more like call-an-ambulance kind of hurry than I’d prefer. Call me crazy.

So that’s that for now. We have a scheduled c-section with the anticipation of going into labor prior to that date. Doesn’t labor plus surgery sound awesome? ha. This time, I am determined to control as much of the experience as possible. I am going to meet with an anesthesiologist in advance and talk about the terrible reaction I had to the meds last time.  It was definitely not typical and what made Amelia’s birth very emotionally difficult for me. Oh and physically too since I threw up for hours and hours violently. If the baby arrives safely, is healthy, AND I can manage to hold/feed her as soon as possible after birth, I will consider it a success. Again, call me crazy.


There’s the news for now. Everything else is right on target. Babygirl is measuring perfectly, my blood work is okay—anemic but not diabetic, and my blood pressure was already lower after only 2 hours of summer under my belt. ha. In all fairness, my BP is always pretty low, but it had gone up considerably while I was dealing with some stressful work stuff the week before finals. I think it was 118/60-something. Then the following week, two hours after finishing finals, it was down to 98/60 something. Things are going so well that the doc took me off the once-a-week visit schedule to two weeks between visits.

My only job from here is to stay pregnant!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011



Amelia had a great third birthday. It was especially low-key compared to the previous two birthdays. Though I had an awesome idea for a fab party, we decided that it wasn’t doable this time.  Not only am I in the 8th month of what has been an exhausting pregnancy, but school didn’t end until May 19th, which is about a week and a half later than normal AND only one day before Amelia’s birthday (thank goodness it wasn’t like that the year she was born!).  Not to mention that it was hard to decide who to invite since she now has all of her school friends (whose parents we don’t know)! It was just a perfect storm of reasons why we shouldn’t have a party this year.  We ended up having a great day and feeling really great about the compromised plan this year.

The day began when Amelia ran into our room in the morning shouting, “Mama Mama—there’s PRESENTS out there!” We’d left her wrapped gifts in the living room between her room and ours knowing she’d see them when she woke up. “It’s my BIRTHDAY today! I’m 3 now!”


She opened a couple of her presents in the morning.



This mailbox is awesome! She adores it. It has a working KEY and everything.



We’d gone back and forth on what to do on her birthday for a while. We’d considered the Zoo and/or Fairy Tale Town. However, as the day got closer, I realized that walking around the zoo/FTT all day would have pretty much knocked me out too much to get through the dinner party we planned. Plus, it just seemed like too much of a ‘day’ to slam the zoo into the first part, race home for nap, and then out to dinner. Too much for the 3-year-old AND the mama. Don’t forget I’d only given finals the day before and was about to hit that end-of-the-semester wall. The one that makes you want to sleep for a week of recovery. Yeah, that’s where I am right now. Anyway, in all honesty, Amelia is only three. She doesn’t need a huge, over-the-top, insanely scheduled day to be happy. We decided the night before her birthday to just head to the Fountains. It’s close to home, has lots to do for little ones, food onsite, AND not something we do every day. Totally doable in a half day. And much more relaxed than our other plans.


It turned out to be the perfect plan! We stopped by the playground.



Hey Amelia, how old are you???



Hey Amelia, how old are you??? That’s three, bitches! ha I love how she throws it out like a sign or something. Note her other hand also showing her new age.



She changed into her bathing suit just in time to hit the fountain play area. She literally round around the periphery, managing to stay completely dry for the longest time. Most kids run to the water, she makes her fun in avoiding it. 



It only took one accidental, mistimed spray to get her into the spirit.



And by ‘accidental’ I mean Daddy throwing her in.




Serious cuteness.



After the water, we had lunch, which was exactly ten feet from the fountains. After yumminess, we had to do one more thing to make the day extra special for our locomotive-loving babychild.

Here’s my ticket!



Hey Amelia, are you happy to be in a TRAIN?!  Hey Daddy, how’s that clown car working for you? lol If he could take a reasonable picture, he wouldn’t always have to be the one ‘on board.’ ha He really is such a trooper.



After the fabulous train ride—complete with a horn and bell—we packed it up to head home for a solid nap. You know, even big 3-year-olds need naps. And their pregnant mommies really do too. Amelia almost fell asleep on the short drive home. I can’t even think about the shape she would have been in if we’d dragged her through a quasi amusement park an hour away from home! Ack. So three cheers for scaling down and saving the whole family from unnecessary stress and hurry. And for knowing our limits. And to think that we had such a good time at, you know, a MALL. Love it.


After naps, we freshened up and headed to the mini party. All grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins aboard, which is a fairly small group. (Our siblings really need to breed a little quicker.) We reserved the party room at a small, family-owned local pizza joint close to our new house. We got a small bunch of balloons (yellow of course, because it’s her favorite—and she’ll tell you that whether you ask or not), put some yellow flowers in mason jars on the tables, brought an ice cream cake, and that was it. The pizza parlor was fantastic. They let us order pizzas in advance, had appetizers ready when we got there and took great care of us. We literally showed up and left mostly empty handed. It was a beautiful thing.


Cousins! How cute are they?! Amelia, 3 and Baby Cousin 1. Their birthdays are only 4 days apart. Can you imagine this picture next year? Three girls in three years (plus/minus a month or two) for this family. I can hardly wait. I see a braided ring-leader in our midst.



Grammy love. Who is happier here? I’m fairly certain that my mom would bypass both my brother and me if she could’ve gotten Amelia directly. Oh and see the ribbon in Amelia’s hair? Yeah, she thought it was SUCH a special day.

mom and A


This is her face as everyone sang to her. Happy. Shy. Happy.

A and cake


The mama and the baby. With the baby. The mama and the big girl and the baby? yikes. This is Amelia at exactly 3 and I’m 31+ weeks here.

I love this child.



Mama, Baby, Daddy. Bump. We don’t get a pic of the three of us but maybe once a year. It’s pretty striking to see how big she is here and how we look like a real family and like grown up parents. Weird. It’s weird to see myself pregnant with Amelia present because I associate pregnancy so much with just her. But here she is and here I am pregnant with another baby. Weird.

family pic

Maybe our last picture as a family of three?


All in all, it was a perfect kind of day. Amelia had a great time at the Fountains and loved that the whole family was there just for her birthday. She got spoiled with presents, but not over the top with more things than she can possibly play with.  In keeping it simple, we made it possible to enjoy the day fully, rest, and relax. It was not easy to go against the norm for us but we were so very grateful for our own common sense this time around. I looooove doing fun crafty things for parties, but it just would’ve been too much this time. And frankly, I don’t think Amelia noticed one way or another. She’s only three. She doesn’t need 50 people around her to have fun or an amusement park. She came home saying “I had a great time at my pizza party. Birthdays are really, really fun, mama!” The funny thing is that we were still all exhausted when we got home! ha. We put Amelia to bed much later than normal and then went straight to bed ourselves. She woke up the next morning asking when it would be her birthday again. :)


This year, I really didn’t have time to sit and reflect a lot on Amelia’s turning 3. I’m pretty sure I’ve cried at the other birthdays, but this one just kind of came and went. Probably because school butted up so closely and distracted me from having a complete thought. Or maybe this year has been riddled with so many milestones that the birthday is hardly eventful in comparison. Mostly though, I just enjoy her in the now. As Amelia gets older, she certainly tries me in more ways than ever, but I just enjoy her more too. I’ve enjoyed each stage more than the last and that helps me not look back too much. As we emerge out of the twos (and into the lordhelpme threes), the thought I keep coming back to is that the baby is gone. Between two and three, every last bit of the babychild gives way to the little kid. The diapers (even at night) are gone, the crib is gone, sippy cups, and snacktrappers are all history. The funny mismatched words and phrases have lost out to complete sentences expressing cohesive (but mostly hilarious) thoughts. The diaper bag is in a closet somewhere, we don’t buy baby wipes anymore, and I no longer carry 5 pairs of undies in my purse. She dresses herself, brushes her own teeth, and has a strong opinion about all kinds of things. The baby is gone and we find ourselves in the company of a little girl. It’s rather shocking in some ways, but completely welcome in all ways. With the baby gone, I can honestly confess that I like her so much better now. I love the little kid. Love her! And when I think about her as a baby, I would absolutely prefer her of today no matter what. I know so many people who mourn the baby loss, but I see that period as the work that I put in to get the kid I have today. It’s a little scary how quickly she’s growing into a child and I am most certainly sentimental about each phase, but every stage has bested the previous so far, so I’ll take what I’ve got today and look forward to rather than resist tomorrow.


All that said, in some ways, it feels like she’s been in our lives forever. And in others, it seems like it was just yesterday that she looked like this.

It’s hard to believe that this little baby is about to be the big sister.

Now that makes me weepy.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Happy Day.

We are all terribly exhausted tonight. I'm pecking away on my phone . . . from bed just to commemorate the day.

It was a day full of birthday fun for our little girl topped off with a family dinner party at the pizza parlor. It was obvious how great of a day Amelia had by the size of her meltdown before bed. It's always hard to say good bye to a fabulous day.

More as soon as we've all recovered.

Three years ago.

Two years ago.

One year ago.


It seems like forever since she was born and only yesterday since she was a little baby.

Life is funny like that I guess.

Happy Birthday to my sweet angel baby love.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

28th Week Doctor Visit


Went to the doctor yesterday and figured I’d post all of the updates here since I haven’t journaled in about oh, a lifetime it seems. At least not one during this pregnancy.


First of all, I have to say how much happier I am with our new doctor. When we moved, we took the opportunity to get out of Mercy Downtown medical group, which left us with a group of OBs (none of which were actually assigned to you) and delivering at Mercy General, which was ridiculously horrible. There, I had to talk to a different doctor every month and therefore repeat my concerns each month and even better, get an entirely different opinion from each doctor, which often contradicted with the last. Now we are set to deliver in one of the best, most modern birthing centers in the area and I have a private practice doctor who is fabulous (so far).


Going into the third trimester, I’m beginning to get a lot of anxiety about birth and delivery. We didn’t know anything was wrong before going into labor with Amelia and by the time we figured out what the problem was, she was here, perfectly healthy, and everything was fine. This time, I’m finding a lot more fear in the knowing and struggling with all of the possible scenarios. At the ultrasound last month, the baby’s head was downward but not quite in the right spot. As the she’s (we’ve) gotten bigger, it’s become increasingly obvious that she’s sideways. Her head is down, but tucked into my left hip bone. Her spine is down so she’s curled up and facing me with her butt and legs wrapped over to my right ribs. I think she’s like this



The doctor walked in yesterday, put her hands on my belly and said, “that baby is sideways.” How nice that she could tell and I didn’t have to convince her like I did with the yahoos when I was pregnant with Amelia. There is still time for the baby to get into the correct birthing position and we can all hope for that . . . but if you ask me, that babychild isn’t going anywhere. Amelia was sideways too but facing downward (with her feet where her head should have been) by this time in the pregnancy and never moved, despite that the doctors kept saying “that baby will move!” Turns out that only 1% of babies go into delivery lying transverse like this, but sometimes doctors forget about those exceptions. In any case, if I had to put money on it, I’d say that she’s stuck in there and already finding herself with too little room to recalibrate.  The doctor thinks that by 32 weeks we’ll know for sure where she’ll stay.


If the baby stays in this position, that would eliminate a few of the possible scenarios. A sideways baby can’t come out through the designated path, so a cesarean would be the only option.  As much as I completely despised having surgery to birth Amelia and how incredibly sick it made me and how torturous that recovery was, there is a little relief in possibly eliminating a series of possibilities that were overwhelming me. I was excited at the possibility of trying a med-free vaginal birth and letting my body actually do what it can do. There was something empowering in that possibility not to mention the much shorter recovery. I saw my sister-in-law a few hours after having our niece (med-free vaginal birth) and she was sitting up in bed, had showered, had nursed the baby, and looked just like herself—fresh and beautiful.  It was about as opposite of my experience with Amelia as possible. At a few hours post-birth, I was still puking my guts up and trembling uncontrollably and unable to hold my baby. I didn’t even get out of bed for 24 hours and didn’t shower for several days, when I hunched over as the water loosened my bandage while Justin held me to keep me from passing out. Not pretty.


However, the thought of attempting a VBAC and then ending up in an emergency section is even worse than what I had the first time! What a gamble! Ack. What do you do?? The typical rate of ruptured uterus is low in a VBAC, but I don’t have a ‘normal’ uterus, so all bets are off the table on its reaction to labor/delivery.


So you see the dilemma. As it turns out, VBAC may not be an option. Disappointed? Definitely. Relieved? A little. Only because it takes some of the guess-work out.


Everyone says the second c-section is much easier than the first. But most of those people schedule the second one. They mark the calendar (seems weird to pick your baby’s birthday doesn’t it?), get a good night’s sleep (hopefully), put some makeup on (pictures!), and meet their families at the hospital for the big day. That DOES sound better than the original route. That 2:30 am wake-up call was a little . . . worrisome to say the least. However, with this baby, the best prediction is that I’ll probably deliver around 36 weeks again. Nobody would schedule a delivery before the baby is full term (which is at 37 weeks). You definitely want the baby to stay in for as long as possible. Just as Amelia was a whopping 6 pounds at birth, she could have easily been 3. Therefore, the probably scenario if Baby stays transverse and undeliverable without surgery is that we would have a planned cesarean section, but not scheduled.  We’ll know very soon that a c-section is inevitable and everyone will plan on that outcome. However, more likely than not, I will go into labor before they could schedule the surgery. Sooooooo now my mind is just spinning, reeling with all of these possibilities as well. When/where? The trickiest thing about this scenario for us this time is that we have Amelia. Getting to the hospital will be incredibly urgent as the umbilical cord could come out without the head blocking the cervix, causing death. So we’d have to rush to get there just like last time, but the big difference is that we’ll have to drop Amelia off somewhere, wait for someone to pick her up, or otherwise, figure out what to do in that moment with/for her. It adds complication for certain. Not to mention that Justin works 12-hours shifts now and an hour away from home. All I can think about is if I go into labor when Amelia and I are home alone or out somewhere together. What would I do?! If things go as they did the first time, I’ll go directly into active, quick, painful labor within a few minutes of water breakage so I’m not sure driving us to the hospital would be the best idea . . .


So that’s the update for now. We have another appointment soon and as we go into 30 weeks and beyond, we’ll definitely be monitoring as much as possible for signs of labor. We know more this time, which is comforting, but frightening too. I’m only just now coming to terms with the trauma of Amelia’s birth. As I find myself nearing birth again, the feelings that buried themselves in relief after her arrival are surfacing and bringing me to tears almost every day in anxious anticipation, stress, and fear. I know that she got here just fine and all was good, but I’m now starting to realize how scary and traumatizing it all was at the time.

Next week, I have the glucose gestational diabetes test (fun!) and possibly another OB appointment. Can’t believe that I’ll be 30 weeks in a week. yikes. Just further reminder that there is no easy way out of this game . . .

Monday, May 2, 2011

Amusing Amelia

Me: My poor Punkin! I am so sorry you have this terrible cough. I wish there was something I could do to make it go away. 
Amelia: Don't worry Mama. Don't worry Mama. I feel better soon. 

Me: Do you want to take a shower with me?
Amelia: No. I want to take a shower with Daddy.
Me: You don't want to take a shower with mama??
Amelia: Mama. I know that you like to take showers, but I like to take showers too and sometimes I just want to take a shower with Daddy, okay?

Amelia: I'm sorry I didn't take a nap today mama. I love you very much though!