Hospital Fun

Hello from my very own hospital room! It's very odd to be in the same gown, with the same horrible beds, and eating the same food that my patients do every day. Did I mention that I'm delivering at the same hospital where I work?

So all is well so far. We were both pretty nervous last night getting here but once we got checked in and settled a bit we felt much better. Had the Cervadil inserted at 7:30 last night and removed at 7 am this morning. I got a quick shower, light breakfast and now the Pitocin as started. They want to wait on an internal exam until my doctor comes through, just to save me less time with people all up in my biz, which is fine. But all night long even before the Pit my contractions were very apparent both on the screen and for me. Not painful, just crampy and uncomfortable. The nurses say baby looks awesome with his heartbeat and movement with always makes a momma happy to hear:)

We shall see how this day unfolds! My new nurse works 7 to 7 so she's hoping we have baby boy by the time she leaves. Whoo! But I know it could take quite a bit longer than that, possibly, so I'm keeping an open mind. Nate went to get 'real breakfast' but when he comes back we are going to hook me up to the portable monitor and do some serious walking with my hot hospital gown and ugly socks. I will try to update this same post as I can throughout the day and also on facebook.

So thankful that everyone is thinking of us, sending good thoughts, and keeping us in their prayers. It helps so much! Thank you guys, here's to getting baby 'Los out in a safe and timely fashion!
First check from the doctor: 1 cm dilated, 50% effaced, 'very posterior' cervix, and only a -3 station. Doh! I was hoping for more but the contractions are getting stronger yet and they want them to be 2 minutes apart, lasting 1 minute each. Definitely not that close together yet. So we could be settling in for the long haul or maybe not....who knows! I think I'm going to try and nap a bit while I still can because I'm already tired from all this excitement!

Had another check at 2 pm and everything was exactly the same. I've been at the max dose of pitocin since 1:00 and if nothing major has happened by 5 pm the plan is to turn it off and do the Cervadil again tonight. Then tomorrow we'll try this thang again.

I'm having very regular, strong contractions and they are really just uncomfortable for me, nothing unbearable, but so far they haven't made progress with my cervix. The nurse is impressed I'm not in too much pain but I've always had some killer menstrual cramps and these are just like an extreme version of those. I keep talking to baby boy to tell him he needs to sink down and push that cervix open for me! So far he's being pretty darn stubborn.

We had a great conversation with my OB a little bit ago. She is still being really positive that something can happen but said that no matter what he'll come tomorrow. She can't let me go three days because of my Pre-E and I totally understand that. I mean, the more we talk about this decision to induce the better I feel about it, even if that means my body isn't truly ready and I need a C-section tomorrow. It's just not safe for me or for him to keep him in there and I understand her line of thinking completely now. Every time I get up just for a short walk my BP goes up and the highest it's been is 155/102. Not good. But you know what? Totally out of my control. There is nothing I can do to stop my Pre-E, nothing I could have done to prevent it, and nothing I can do to WILL my body to get going with this labor. It's truly out of my hands which is both frightening and reassuring.

Of course I'm really hoping that my water will just break or otherwise we'll do this whole procedure again tomorrow, which I can handle but it's pretty exhausting. My OB says that this whole day hasn't been for naught because all of these contractions really are training my body for what it needs to do. She says lots of times the second day is when everything clicks into place and things progress. Here's to wishing that is true for me!

On another note, ever since I started the pitocin I've have to be on clear liquids and holy hell I'm starving! I am eating the house out of their sorbet and popsicles trying to get some energy. But the good news if they do stop the pit in a little bit to restart the cervadil she'll let me have a real meal. I'm totally going to pig out! :)

So, thank you all for more thoughts and prayers! Now I really need them all to focus on the next 24 hours or so, praying that my cervix does SOMETHING and that I can mentally handle another day of the pitocin. I'm trying very hard not to feel let down or negative, assuming that this won't work and I'll be in surgery tomorrow night. I realize there is still a good chance that I can deliver vaginally but it just seems like my body isn't ready and I'm bummed about it.

Eyes on the prize: which is holding my baby boy in my arms. Whether he makes his entrance through my vag or through my stomach I suppose makes no difference in the long run. Looks like it will be March 1 if not today!


4:30 am
Cannot sleep, despite the Ambien this time. More painful contractions that are still like menstrual cramps but much worse than the pit-induced ones are keeping me up. Plus my racing mind.

I had a little breakdown to Nate last night before bed because I'm just frustrated with my body right now. I'm preparing myself to mourn the loss of my vaginal delivery. I know that sounds stupid, but it's true. I just tried all day long to keep a positive, upbeat attitude but after both of our parents left and I felt so exhausted and emotionally drained I couldn't help but cry. Of course, Nate comforted me and reassured me that he's so proud of me but I really haven't done a darn thing yet. He said that no matter how our baby comes into the world, it's going to be amazing to have him in our lives. The ways to an end....does it really matter if my induction fails and we need a C-section? Does that make my experience any less special? What about all of the couples in the world who struggle with infertility for years? When they finally succeed and have a baby does their pathway make them any more or less satisfying than someone who gets pregnant on accident? If we are all becoming parents, through various methods, do the details of how we get there matter? I don't know. I just know that I don't want any regrets when I look back on this. If my body won't cooperate, while still being sick with Pre-E, then so be it. But i just wanted to get that emotional dumping out of my system last night before it happens today in front of everyone. Of course, my poor nurse walked in during my sobfest and witnessed the ugly cry and was a doll. She assures me that second-day inductions really can work and I know she's not just saying that.

Enough rambling. Gonna try to sleep some more and think positive thoughts. What an emotionally draining few days! Baby Carlos is being stubborn and not listening to his mama right now....not much will change when he's on the outside, I'm sure:)


Pit is up and running and these contractions definitely feel different than yesterday....much lower and more intense. I think I'm up 10 units of pitocin and the max is 30, they are going to check me soon and then get a game plan together. I'm feeling more positive about this whole thing right now and part of that is because of the tons of support we are getting from friends, family and strangers on the internets. Thank you guys!


No, my water did not break. I'm not currently in labor.


I'm being induced tomorrow night!!!

My doctor called me within 45 minutes of me dropping off my pee today. Not a good sign when the doctor herself makes the call, right? She informed me that my urine test was positive for protein this time and therefore I officially have Pre-Eclampsia. Gulp. She told me not to freak out too much, that the cut off score is 300 and my urine was at 302. HOWEVER, that is still a positive result and since I'm full term she needs to induce me. I'm pretty sure that my creeping BP and rapid weight gain tipped the scales of her decision, too.

So of course my first question was: "Well, what about my unfavorable cervix?" To which she responded, 'That is the million dollar question.' She went on to say that I will come in at 7 pm and stay the night at the hospital tomorrow, where they'll begin to use cervical ripeners overnight to get things rolling. Then Sunday morning is when they will start pitocin and we'll just have to go from there. She said it can sometimes take a VERY long in days, depending on how my body responds. I think she said the average time this takes is 30 hours. THIRTY FREAKING HOURS. I mean, I feel like I should get my marathon mindset in gear you know? She is not pushing an epidural on me immediately or any other intervention but basically said we'll be having lots of conversations throughout the day depending on the course of things.

Let me take a time out from all of this to just say: "HOLY HELL, IS THIS REALLY HAPPENING?" Now I'm going to squeal a little bit. Now I'm remembering to breathe. Okay, continuing post....

So anyway, she talked me through the process and told me I will be having a baby possibly on Sunday or Monday. Either a February baby or March....we shall see? I'll be right at 38 weeks on Sunday, so little 'Los is going to make his appearance 2 weeks early. Dear Lord I hope he is ready for this!

Obviously, I freaked out a bit at first. What if my body doesn't respond to the induction and I end up with a C-section? What if the baby isn't mature enough and needs lots of NICU time? What if I'm in labor for freaking THREE DAYS? But luckily Nate talked me down, as usual, and informed me that this is extremely exciting. He even made this statement: "Baby, this is going to be fun! We're going to have a baby in a few days!" I guess it's starting to sink in now but that doesn't mean I'm freaking out any less:)

My parents will be making the drive up on Sunday and are so excited. I made a few calls, sent texts, and now I'm just trying to process it all. Nate is being my voice of reason and I cannot put into words how grateful I am to have him in my corner. We're gearing up for an eventful, intense, and unforgettable experience, you guys. We are going to be parents VERY soon!!

I'll have my laptop handy at the hospital for sure and will update as I can. But obviously, any happy thoughts or prayers would be greatly appreciated for baby blueberry Carlos. I cannot wrap my head around the fact he is on his way out!

Oh, and so much for shortened maternity leave. If there is one positive thing about this process it's that I will get my full 12 weeks now. Whoo hoo!

And yes, I will post his name as soon as possible. I know that is what everyone is waiting for most of all:)

Bedrest, it is

Welp, she pulled the plug on the whole working thing. I'm officially starting my maternity leave early and on 'modified bedrest' at home. The good news is that she will NOT let me go past my due date no matter what so we are talking a little over 2 weeks max that I have to wait to see my baby boy. And if I cut out 2 weeks of my full 12 weeks leave at work then so be it, I'm mentally and physically done working anyway. I hate thinking about missing time with 'Los after he's here but there's not much I can do about it now, and we'll just have to cross that bridge when we come to it, you know?

Basically, my pressures have been a little higher this whole week. Plus, I've gained 5 pounds in 3 days which is obviously NOT good and a sign of retaining fluids or swelling, which could mean the start of pre-eclampsia. I admitted to my OB that I've had a slight headache since yesterday, that my rings don't fit anymore, and my ankles are a little swollen. Combine all of that with my higher BP numbers and my doc didn't hesitate to say, 'You are done with work now.' Okay then!

She's having me do the dreaded Pre-E labs again for the fourth time but really, peeing in the jug for 24 hours at home is going to be so much better than lugging it around at work. I go back to her on Monday and we'll see if my cervix is favorable and using that as a factor with my labs, my BP, the non-stress test, and how I'm feeling might give us a better game plan. Ugh, I'm just so ready to be done with this stuff you guys. Such an emotional roller coaster!

Part of me just wants her to induce me next week to meet my mister man, end this chaos, and to avoid cutting into too much of my leave before he's here. But the other BIGGER part of me knows it's best to wait it out and see if little 'Los wants to come out early on his own before getting induced. It's really not in my hands anyway so there's no point in worrying about it now, but I really want to avoid a C-section. I think that is my bottom line and the only 'birth plan' I'll be hanging onto at this point. And you better believe I'll be trying some of those 'natural induction' ideas out there to jump start my cervix into doing SOMETHING by Monday. That is my best shot at avoiding a C if I am induced so bring on the pineapple, spices, and some marital relations:)

But enough about that, I was thinking one night as I couldn't fall back to sleep YET AGAIN and realized that these are my last few days of pregnancy. Even though it's been a whirlwind over the past 3 weeks and a little stressful, I have still loved every second of this ride. I'm sad to move away from pregnancy yet incredibly excited to meet my little guy. Lots of mixed emotions to sort through and luckily I'll have plenty of time on the couch to do so:)

I wanted to make a list reminding myself of why I'll both miss pregnancy and be happy when it's over. Perhaps some other people out there can relate:

What I will miss dearly about being pregnant:

-feeling baby boy move inside my belly. There is nothing like it in the world.

-that special honor I have as his incubator. Little talks we have to each other without words. Protecting him from the cruel real world.

-sheer anticipation: excitement, nerves, not really knowing WHAT to expect but having lots of happy thoughts about the future. I realize I'm totally naive no matter how many books I read and I'll never get this time back before I have a baby in my life.

-watching my body morph into a baby making factory, being amazed that it knows how to grow this little guy. And I really do like my pregnant belly.

-big ol' boobies! Holla!

-getting a little extra concern from co-workers and patients, the 'mother hen' mentality from people watching out for this very pregnant lady

-smiles from strangers, questions about when I'm due. Everyone loves a pregnant belly, right?

-eating without worrying about calories. Hey, it's for the baby, you know.

What I am looking forward to after pregnancy:

(besides the obvious of having baby boy in my arms, being a mommy, and embarking on a new journey of parenthood with Nate. Let's talk a little more superficially here)

-RUNNING AGAIN. Double digit mileage, the feeling of accomplishment after a long run, and sore leg muscles. Seriously, cannot wait.

-Walking normally again. Less waddle, more glide:)

-Not feeling fat when I look in the mirror, hopefully fitting back into those pre-pregnancy clothes I took for granted before.

-One word: wine!

-Sleeping on my stomach again. Oh, and my back. Basically, finding a comfortable sleep position will be nice. Plus, rolling over in bed without yearning for a fork lift will be REALLY sweet.

-Real coffee, the caffeinated kind. Enough to make me all happy and jittery:)

-Being able to hug my husband without my belly getting in the way.

-the luxury of putting on my shoes without grunting like an ape, or picking something up from the ground without doing a little jig to get down that low.

And with that update, I'll leave you on this note: big brother Henry is totally freaking out lately. He knows something is going on and he does not like it one bit. Please note his face in this maternity picture and try not to laugh at his pathetic-ness:

Sorry for not updating more and making some of you think I'm in labor! I really hope to be one of those bloggers who can post a little something when I'm headed to the hospital...although I can't promise anything, that is a goal of mine. But for now, I'm going to cozy up to the couch and get acquainted with a few of my Felicity DVDs. It's been too long!

Thirty-Seven Weeks

Full term, baby! I've made it! No matter what happens now, baby Carlos will not be born a preemie so reaching this milestone is extra special. Not to mention that I've made it to the very last fruit in The Bump's time line. A freaking watermelon, yo.
Sigh. I remember when he was a little poppy seed, a blueberry, an orange and so on. Now? A gigantor melon resting in my belly. Excuse me while I get a little sentimental here.

And somebody had another growth spurt by the looks of these weekly photos:


From above:

This past week has been more of the same and most of my updates were in my last post, if you care to review. HOWEVER, one other fun fact? Those contractions I mentioned are a lot more frequent than I thought. Nate even noticed one randomly as he rubbed my belly the other night and was all, 'Woah, dude. Why is your stomach rock hard?' and I was all, 'I'm pretty sure that's a contraction and they happen all of the time now.'

So I used Contraction Master to time the bad boys on Sunday morning for awhile and they ranged from 30 to 90 seconds long each, with 4 to 8 minute rests in between. They are not painful at all but my whole gut tightens up and then releases. Do you think these are still Braxton Hicks contractions? I do. But just in case it's something I need to be more serious about I printed off an hour's worth of timed contractions for my OB to peep at my appointment on Monday. Remember, this is the one where she will do another internal and figure out a game plan now that I'm full term. The good news is that my urine results came back and are still normal so I do not have pre-eclampsia yet, still just 'pregnancy induced hypertension.' I'm guessing she won't jump the gun with induction this week because my labs are still good and I'd be she'd wait until the 38 week mark at the earliest now. But perhaps my body has other plans with these contractions, huh?

Another fun happening this week: my fifth and final baby shower. This is the part where I mention yet again how incredibly blessed Nate and I are to have such supportive and caring people in our lives. My mother-in-law threw us this shower and it was filled with friends and family and fun. And lots of food:) I can honestly say that there isn't anything else we NEED for this baby, maybe just a few more things to get but we are more than ready for baby boy to arrive as far as gear goes.





My cousin-in-law, Michelle, let letting me borrow their 50mm f/1.4 lens for a bit and I'm ALL over snapping pictures of this adorable little man: Erin's Henry. So far I like the lens a lot! Still not sure if I want to buy my own or not, but I totally want one of these little guys for myself:)

What a fun weekend! I'm totally exhausted after being so social all day long but it was worth it, of course. Everyone was predicting that I'll have the baby in the next week by my serious nesting syndrome and contractions. Did I mention that I made labels for the drawers in the nursery? Yeah. It's bad.

I truly hope that my doctor's appointment on Monday yields good news, as in my internal exam shows at least some signs of dilation. I feel a bit 'off' today as I write this, just different somehow, like either I'm going to catch a cold or drop a kid in the next few days:) I can't sleep at night and even napping has proved more difficult lately. Something is happening with this body and it's really started to hit me that these might be our last days without baby boy on the outside!

So 37 weeks: full term, finished with baby showers, and looking extremely pregnant with a few contractions to prove it:)

Update Monday evening after appointment:

Well, no news is always good news. BP still the same, non-stress test still showing baby boy kicking up a storm, haven't gained any weight since this ordeal started at 34 weeks (whoo hoo!), and.....not dilated. I was bummed but my OB assured me that doesn't mean much, as many women won't dilate at all until the day of labor. She liked that I've had practice contractions because that is definitely a good sign of things to come. And so, I return on talks of induction yet, no changing work plans, just more of the same. I'll take it as a good appointment!

Oh, and I feel less 'off' today and more like my norm. I think I was just exhausted after a crummy night's sleep and the shower yesterday because I made it a full 8 hours at work treating patients the whole time so things are still going well! Now I'm trying to get used to the idea of having a few more weeks possibly....we shall see. One day at a time...


Well, I've had two OB appointments this week plus one ultrasound. I guess an update is in order.

Non-stress tests: apparently I will be getting one of these at every single appointment from here on out. Baby boy is very cooperative and kicks up a storm and I really do love hearing his heartbeat fill the room. They say as long as he moves twice during this 20 minute assessment they are happy and he's always moved more like 15-20 times, with his heart rates fluctuating from 130s-160s. Oh, and apparently this test also measures any uterine contractions and guess what? Today the nurse walked in and said, 'He looks really good....and what is going on with that uterus of yours? Feeling anything?' I glanced down at the paper and saw that there were definite peaks and valleys there, signifying light contractions. I mean, I knew I have been having Braxton Hicks a lot more often lately but it's pretty cool to see them on paper! I hope that is a good sign that my body is getting ready.

Blood Pressures: ah, the drama of my BP. I still take it every day, three times a day, while at work and honestly the numbers have been pretty good. Not any worse, usually hanging right under the 'red line' mark of 140/90. But then again, I've been having some of my favorite nurses take my pressure manually thinking that was most accurate (and secretly, I noted that manual BPs lended towards much lower readings instead of those pesky automatic cuffs, so I vowed to always use manual readings). Well, the doc today caught on to my love for manual readings and wasn't so sure they are more accurate because every person can hear a BP differently and they might miss a higher number. They used an automatic cuff on me at my appointment and it was 144/90, I begged them to try manual and it was 138/88. Still not great, but whatever. I returned to work and at the very end of the day my last pressure taken automatically was up to 150/92. Gulp. Not good. See why I hate the automatic machines at work?

Labs: Guess who gets to pee in a jug for another 24 hours? Me!! Third time for this go around and let me tell you, I'm getting to be a pro. Last week my protein stayed under the 'danger zone' mark but my doc wants to keep checking to make sure pre-eclampsia isn't creeping up on me. And here is the kicker: if my labs ARE worse my doctor would consider inducing me NEXT WEEK since I will be 37 weeks and 'full term' on Sunday.

Breathe. Read that again. NEXT WEEK!!

Before we all freak out here (what, is it just me?), let's remember that it totally depends on my labs, on my pressures, and on how my cervix is ripening up at my appointment on Monday. She would like for me to be dilated before she induces me because she knows I want to avoid a C-section. And no, she didn't check me at all this week because she's waiting until Monday's appointment for my next internal. I, of course, am dying to know if my body is doing anything productive down there besides having random contractions.

I really REALLY don't want to be induced at only 37 weeks unless it's absolutely necessary. It just sounds so early to me and I know of tons of girls who had worse BP and labs than me that were induced at 38-39 weeks. It's not like my doctor promised me a date with induction next week but I can't stop thinking about that possibility. I have a gut feeling that she'll let me go longer unless things get really bad with my situation so I should probably just stop worrying right now and go back to my 'taking it a day at a time' attitude. But I'm just trying to pump myself up to put up a fight for an extra week or so if she does push the issue. Only time will tell...

Growth Ultrasound: on Tuesday, I had the ultrasound and it was not nearly as cool as the 20 week US we had. They had me drink a ton of water again and hold it for entirely too long which is basically cruel and unusual punishment when nine months pregnant (and I thought it was bad at 5 months? HA. That was nothing!). The other thing that made this time not as amazing was that little boy is so BIG now that I could barely tell what we were looking at most of the time. His entire head took up the whole screen and then some, when at 20 weeks we could see his full little body in one shot.

The tech this time didn't tell me much and referred me back to the doctor for final stats but don't worry... I snuck a peek and saw that they measured his head circumference at 38 weeks and 4 days! GULP. That is 2 weeks ahead if you are keeping track. Then the belly measurement was only at 35 weeks or so, which made me immediately freak out. But today my doctor informed me that little man is right at the 51st percentile for size, my fluid level is great and my placenta is 'perfect' ---whatever that means. Guess he will just have a bigger head like his daddy and it's obviously a good thing for him to be right at the average mark for overall size.

The pictures weren't wonderful but here is a profile shot just for fun:

36 weeks

So besides all of that, I've been hanging in there. Still working full days and then crashing on the couch for at least a one hour nap each night. I wouldn't be surprised if my doctor puts me on bedrest next week but who knows. Yesterday was the first day that my ring didn't fit on my finger and I'm pretty sure my ankles are a little more swollen, too. Not only that but I had a little bit of a headache yesterday, too, which combined with the swelling is not a good thing at this point. Especially since my pressure was so high at the end of the day today---I'm really hoping that I'm not turning the corner towards full blown pre-eclampsia. Ugh. Not fun.

I know that I'm very lucky to be this far along right now, since Baby Carlos is basically full term. I have read, and re-read all of your awesome comments about induction and success stories--which still really help me to chill out a bit. Now my new thing is worrying about my doctor pushing early induction when I really want to wait it out so 'Los can incubate as long as possible. (Hannah gave Carlos the nickname 'Los and I dig it). Obviously, if my body is inhospitable for the baby and she needs him out to avoid harming him then I'm all for it. I trust her decision making skills and vow not to freak out too much over the next few days. But I would just feel a lot better about the whole thing if I could make it until 38-39 weeks. Maybe that is exactly what will happen anyway or maybe I'll go into labor on my own before it becomes an issue.

My goals: to make it through the work day on Friday, have an awesomely relaxing weekend including my last baby shower on Sunday, spending lots of quality time with Nate (who suggested we have a date night this weekend, just in case 'Los makes his appearance next week....isn't he cute?), and chilling out. Yes, the last one is important, I know:)

Sorry for the rambling, yet again. It just feels so good to get out all of my thoughts on this screen and I know a lot of you have had experience with pregnancy issues and survived to tell the tale:) Who would like to put bets on the outcome of my situation??

Thirty-Six Weeks

I'm officially 9 months pregnant today, going by the strange '10 total months of pregnancy' thing. Wow. Just wow.



At 36 weeks I'm not quite considered 'full term' but if I would go into labor on my own, my doctor would not do anything to stop it. Totally crazy, right? Even crazier: I'm pretty sure I've been having more frequent and definitely more intense contractions lately. I'm going to call them 'Braxton Hicks' because they aren't at regular intervals or anything so I doubt they are anything productive. But every now and then, especially when I'm laying down on a side or sometimes when I'm up walking around, I'll feel very crampy as if I'm about to start my period. I'll feel my belly and it is hard as a rock so I know my entire uterus is contracting a bit and it's not just baby boy poking his head on my ovaries or something. I've had that crampy feeling a lot more over the past few weeks but now it's getting to the point where it's a lot more painful and noticeable so we'll see what my doc thinks about that when I see her on Monday. Oh, and this is possibly too much information for you but last Wednesday night I had some very light brown spotting which my doctor is not concerned about but it could be a sign of changes in my cervix preparing for birth, or possibly the beginnings of my mucous plug. Whoo hoo! :)

My last appointment on Thursday was a long one, but luckily nothing has really changed with my status yet. My blood pressures are hanging right around the acceptable mark but even so my doctor ordered a whole battery of tests since it's been over a week with high pressures to make sure there aren't any other signs of pre-eclampsia. She ordered more blood tests, I had to pee in another giant jug for 24 hours (and this time I did it at work, which was incredibly fun and challenging to pour my pee into a jug and refrigerate it during a work day), they did a non-stress test on baby Carlos to make sure he's moving around okay, and ordered an ultrasound for Tuesday to check his growth and amniotic fluid levels. The stress test was fine, I think--he moved like crazy at first but once I got comfortable during the 20 minute test so did he and I think he fell asleep for awhile. So the nurse came in with a mini-tazer gun of sorts to zap my belly and he woke up for a few seconds before settling down again. Maybe that means we have a good sleeper in our future? :) His heart rate was fine throughout and the nurse didn't seem too concerned so I'll take that test off my worry list. The ultrasound on Tuesday is something I'm looking forward to because normally I wouldn't get any more after our 20 week session, so this is a chance to see our boy again! But of course, I'm hoping the fluid levels are okay and his growth is normal...I'm not getting too excited for their weight estimate on him since I always hear about techs over-estimating a HUGE baby and then they come out 2 pounds lighter than predicted. We shall see what they say but of course, I hope he is okay in there!

I also had my first internal exam after the Strep B test and it wasn't bad at all. I'm not dilated yet but to quote my doctor, the baby is 'locked and loaded with his head VERY low' so apparently he's in position to make his move. I really think this fact paired with my more frequent contractions and the light spotting means I might go into labor before I have to get induced but I'm trying not to get too attached to that idea just yet. My friend Laura, who is possibly one of the most intelligent people I know as the chief resident at her hospital, says there are studies out there that show women who work in physically demanding jobs and work on their feet have a greater chance of going into labor earlier than their 'desk job' friends. I'm starting to see why that is true.

I managed to work full 8 hour days on Wed, Thurs, and Friday last week with Friday being a whole day of patient care on my feet. I was totally exhausted afterward and took a 2 hour nap that evening but the good news is my pressure stayed under the red line the whole time. I know my doctor is trying to buy me more time at work, without using my maternity leave, by running these tests and making sure there isn't a reason to pull me out early. But in my heart I really believe she won't let me work until the very end because my pressures will go up or something will show in my tests and I'm willing to accept that when it comes. It's SO hard to be at work and feel like I'm not pulling my weight around there, especially when we are crazy busy and I can't go into overdrive like I usually do to see extra patients and take the load off my coworkers. It's a mental battle for sure, as I remind myself that right now my baby boy is most important and if that means I walk slower and sit more often while I work then so be it. I'm still doing my job and functioning at work but I have to take it easy or I won't be able to help at all on bedrest at home:) I'm lucky to have understanding and 'mother hen' coworkers who don't resent my new 'slow but sure' speed but it's more of a challenge for myself as I feel guilty for seeing less patients than my normal. Ultimately my doctor has the final say regarding my safety at work and when she says I'm done I won't fight it next time. But for now I'm taking it a day at a time and scheduled all week long....cross your fingers I can make it!

Other than hitting an awesome milestone of 36 weeks, Nate and I celebrated our 7th Valentines Day together on Sunday by going to one of our favorite brunch joints. It's amazing to think we've been together for almost 8 years and married for almost 3 and this will be our last V-day with just the two of us. I am one lucky lady to have such a hawt, thoughtful, and caring Valentine and through all of this end-of-pregnancy drama Nate has proven to be my voice of reason, as always. He loves me and I love him and we're going to be parents soon. That about sums it up:)


Pretty centerpiece at brunch

My stuffed french toast: complete with strawberry banana cream cheese filling. (((drool)))

Mostly decaff coffee with a few splashes of caffeine. I know, I got SO wild, didn't I?

So that's it for week 36. More of the same issues but nothing has worsened as of yet, so I'm still plugging away as I can. Just taking a heck of a lot more naps in the process...

My Maternity Pictures

Remember how I debated forever about whether I should spend money on professional maternity, birthing, and newborn photos? Well after a lot of research I decided to hire my buddy Andrea to do both a maternity and newborn shoot and for the birth I'll just make do with my lovely husband's skillz. Then perhaps once baby blueberry is bigger, maybe in the fall, we can get some 'professional' images taken as a whole family. I won't feel disgustingly fat that way and my little munchkin will have tons of personality by that point, I'm sure. Or who knows, maybe my own little mini photo shoots will suffice. I'm sure I'll take hundreds of shots on my own within the first week:)

But anyway, Andrea has been our Wisconsin photographer for three different shoots now: two family shoots for Christmas cards and now this maternity shoot. We both decided that this had to be the most fun shoot ever and ended up taking pictures for 2.5 hours in my house! I had scoured the internet for cute poses, outfit ideas, and thought very hard about capturing the best light possible in our little duplex. Would you be surprised to hear that I compiled an 'inspiration' collage for us to use during the shoot? No, of course not. :) It was just us gals plus Henry, since Nate was at class and although I love the maternity shots with the husband involved, it was fun for us ladies to play around with different photography ideas. And Henry couldn't stop licking Andrea in the face when she was down on his level snapping away and tended to put his butt right in the middle of every shot. He's a ladies man, that doggie!

I really wanted to have some cool black and white background shots and so we got very creative by hanging plain duvet covers from nails on the wall....I mean seriously, people, we were not messing around. I was hoping our front window would be a great source of light so I had Nate move away the couch from under the windows and we had to pull away the crib from a nursery wall but of course, the end result was well worth the furniture re-arranging:) I am absolutely in love with all of the pictures. Andrea is super talented and even though we pulled a lot of these poses from other online sources, many are all Andrea's idea and completely fabulous. I am so happy we did these now and can't imagine NOT having images of my first pregnancy to share for years to come. I actually feel somewhat attractive in them and less like a bloated whale so you know Andrea did her job well! I can't wait to tell people I knew Andrea back when she was starting her photography biz, before she got all famous and stuff:) If you are in the Milwaukee area you need to hunt her down asap before get gets too famous.

And now for a few of my favorites.....lots of pictures ahead, so buckle down!














Do you love them as much as I do? Sigh. I really will miss being pregnant...

Blizzard time

Moving away from the baby talk for an entire post....I neglected to mention that we got hit with a big fatty blizzard on Tuesday. It snowed non-stop from the morning through the entire night and I'm guessing we got at least 13-14 inches at our house. It's the light, fluffy type of flakes and SO pretty (because I am exempt from snow blowing, I think it's pretty. Otherwise it'd be annoying). We already had a decent chunk of snow covering our entire yard but this definitely blanketed it pretty good. The roads weren't too bad on Tuesday and I can honestly say I'm getting used to driving in blizzard doesn't really phase me anymore.

So anyway, I promised not to complain about the weather all winter unless we got double digits amount of snow in a day. So here it is! Plus, Memaw is begging for snow pictures because I really haven't done Wisconsin winter justice this year and I must agree. Please observe nighttime snow captured with a tripod during gusty winds:

(check this out...I accidentally caught a car's taillights with a long exposure on my tripod. I love those streaks!)

And you can kind of see the giant mounds of snow at each driveway now. We definitely got another 2-3 inches after these shots, by the way.

And because Henry is just TOO cute when it snows, we had to capture it on film. He was in absolute heaven, you guys.

Totally losing his mind...

If I had more energy I would have snapped some great pics of the total amount of snow we got today during the daylight. But I did not because I worked an entire 8 hours today! And then needed a heavy duty nap afterward, so whatever:)

Happy winter!

More ups, more downs, more ramblings

Okay, so the past day or so has been somewhat of an emotional roller coaster.

I had a great morning yesterday filled with an awesome maternity photo session and lunch with the girls. Then I was off to my OB appointment, feeling a little tired but not too bad. They brought me in and took my BP and didn't tell me what it was. 'That's odd', I thought, since they always announce it right away. 'Good or bad?' I asked the nurse. 'A little high but not too bad,' she replied. I was being nosey and tried to read the numbers over her shoulder and I think I caught a 140/86. Remember the 'goal' from my OB is 140/90 or less, so I figured it was acceptable. So the nurse left and in walked the other nurse for my doc, saying something like, 'Oh hi, how are you today?' while reaching for the BP cuff again. 'I'm getting the old switcharoo, I see?' I asked because no offense--but you can be as sneaky as you want but I'm still going to be that patient who demands to know what is going on. I'm thinking that will bode well during labor and delivery, too, and hope I can keep up my nerve to be an informed patient.

'Yeah, just a recheck,' is what the new nurse announced. And she did tell me the number which was 136/86, still not 'normal' but again, since I was holding onto that 140/90 standard as my goal I figured it was no big deal. Next came the waiting for the doc and a few relaxation breathing techniques on my part to stay calm and not let my mind run wild.

So doc comes in. Asks the same questions she asked at my first 'uh-oh' appointment last week, like 'How are you feeling? Any vision changes? Cramping? Do you have any reason to believe your water has broken?' You know, nice calming questions like that. Of course I replied 'no' to all questions but I realized then that my doc wasn't liking the higher BP no matter what she set as my 'goal'.

Then she asks how much more I'm supposed to work. I told her no more weekends but still scheduled for a full 40 hours during the week. She winced at that statement, then asked, 'What kind of maternity leave do you have?' I knew what she was getting at so I told her I only get 12 weeks, whether that is used before or after the baby it is just 12 weeks and that is that. So if she takes me off work all together, I start my maternity leave and have less time with baby boy after he arrives. She nodded her head and wasn't ready to completely pull the plug just yet since my numbers are still hovering on the borderline, possibly a warning sign to something worse but not bad enough just yet to completely freak out.

I stated that my boss thought they might be able to be flexible with my hours and if we needed to find a happy medium between me working on my feet for 40 hours per week and the other extreme of bedrest, we could probably find a way to make it work. So she sent me off with a script to work only 4 hours a day, then go straight home for 'modified bedrest' to do just that.....REST. No grocery shopping, no more prenatal yoga or the gym, no added projects. Just chilling out. She wants to see me again on Thursday when we will probably begin internals. I asked her what she forsees happening with these last 4.5 weeks of pregnancy and she has a gut feeling that I won't carry baby blueberry Carlos until my due date. She thinks I'll get to 38.5 weeks with *hopefully* the same type of BPs (not worse! please don't let it get worse!) and then she will consider induction. Ick, the 'I' word....definitely not a part of the whole 'natural delivery' thing. I picked her brain a bit more and she feels that once the baby reaches about 39 weeks the amount of growth he will sustain past that point may not be worth the risk he's putting on my body with high blood pressure, and therefore the pros for induction outweigh the cons. But who knows. Maybe the little bloob will be ready to come out even before then. Maybe my pressures will magically get better and she'll let me go until the end. Or perhaps they will get worse, she'll pull me out of work all together and put me on bedrest until 38 weeks then induce me. I felt the need to mention to her that my ultimate goal, aside from a healthy well-incubated baby boy, is to avoid a c-section. I told her I was worried that inducing may lead to one and she assured me that they truly only do a C if the baby is in distress during, if it's an emergency situation that needs to be remedied asap, or if I fail to progress all together during labor which puts baby at risk. I can handle that. I just wanted her to know where I stand with interventions and I'm willing to be a little more flexible on things like meds and possibly an epidural if it means I can avoid a C-section. I mean, after all, my pregnancy has taken a major turn and it's hardly 'normal' right now so I will pick my battles because my body might need more assistance than I originally hoped.

I'll spare you the details but after this appointment I called the 'Leave of Absence' coordinator at work and although I thought dropping my hours at work wouldn't initiate my short term disability and maternity leave, turns out I was wrong. She said that if I cannot work my full days then my maternity leave will begin for those missed hours, thus using about 2 weeks before baby boy is born and leaving me with only 10 weeks after. I was upset. I threw a pity party and cried to Nate about it and felt sorry for myself for awhile. But then I talked to my boss and my doc today and feel a little more realistic about the whole thing. I just had to mourn the loss of that 'plan' of having a full 3 months at home with my little blueberry.

Now knowing that my maternity leave will be affected, my doc has decided to let me TRY working full time but closely monitoring my BPs and stopping the day if anything goes above 140/90. So that's good but of course I realize there is a good chance I won't last full days for the next 4-ish weeks. My boss is going to meet with me tomorrow and we'll try to brainstorm ways I can still work without being on my feet for the full day. There are a lot of unknowns out there which totally freaks me out but I'm trying my best to stay positive and focus on what I DO have going for me instead of what is at risk.

So basically this is a huge, wordy post to say that my appointment was mediocre, then my day turned ugly when I thought I would burn through my time off, but then today I found out I might be able to stretch it a bit longer. Obviously the top priority is a healthy baby, even if that means going on full bedrest and losing out on time with him after he arrives. I don't want to push my body past it's limits all in the name of saving a week or two off work after delivery, but at the same time I don't want to be overly cautious if it's not warranted.

I guess that's why I have an OB---to make those decisions for me, and I just need to roll with the punches a little bit better. Relinquish control, focus on the positive facts (ie baby boy might come even sooner than I thought! And I will still have a good chunk of time with him after. And I am blessed with a job that provides for my family...see? lots of good things in there), and chill out. Those are my goals right now.

If you've made it through this rambling, I'd like to ask a favor. Can I hear some good stories about being induced that resulted in a vaginal delivery? I feel like I've heard so many women talk about failed induction leading to a C-section that it's hard to know if that risk is truly founded. Of course I Googled a bit and found conflicting research on the subject, so I figure hearing real-life success stories might ease my mind. I did find 3 girls at my work in the last day that assured me their inductions lead to 'fast and furious...and painful' vaginal deliveries. That pitocin stuff man, it sounds like no joke but if it does it's job and gets baby out safely I'll deal with it. I just might look like I got hit with a Mack truck for the post-delivery pictures, that's all:)

We shall see what happens tomorrow at work and at my appointment on Thursday. Never a dull moment around here lately!

Thirty-Five Weeks

Since I usually write these weekly posts on Sundays, I can say that today is my 35/35. Not sure what that means? It's the really sweet day in your pregnancy when you have completed 35 weeks and have 35 days to go. Pretty cool, huh? I can't believe I'm here already/finally.

Must be the fact that my pants are lower than usual or something, but it looks like my belly dropped a bit and is more round on bottom now? I dunno.

And I don't think I've shown a full frontal shot before:)
At least I can see a hint of ab muscles up there?

This past week has definitely been one of the most eventful weeks in my pregnancy complete with abnormally high blood pressure out of nowhere, bedrest, peeing in jugs the size of milk containers, startling numbers on the scale, lots of unplanned time off from work, and two baby showers in one day. See? Doesn't it make you tired just to read about my week? Me, too. I need another nap.

Let's talk about a few of those events, shall we?

Blood pressure: I only worked for a few hours on Thursday before my pressure went up to the 'goal' point of 140/90. Then on Saturday I worked all day and it hovered right around that point all day, sometimes testing a little lower and a few times it was a couple of points higher. I lasted 6.5 hours that day and then required a 2 hour nap afterward, which I guess is a success? On Sunday I was scheduled for a full day but my nice coworkers let me leave after 4 hours. The numbers started off very high for my BP (higher than my goal for sure) but then simmered down to below the red I'm not sure what to make of that day as a whole.

I can't help but wonder if I'll make it at my job for the remaining 5 weeks. My boss has said they will be flexible with me and if I need to drop down my hours, they will try to accommodate that. I just hope my pressures stay about like they are and don't spike up again and if I can hold them to this point it should be okay. If these mediocre numbers are a precursor for worse things to happen then I'm certain I won't make it until the end. Why do I have to work on my feet all day, walking/bending/pushing/pulling and talking until I'm blue in the face? Right about now I'm wishing for a comfy desk chair and a computer job but I'm sure that would get old in no time, so I'll just do my best while I can.

Showers: yes, we had TWO in one day. One thrown by Nate's PT school classmates and one thrown by my co-workers at the hospital. Both were so much fun and it left us with that familiar 'humbled and overwhelmed' feeling of gratitude. We feel the love, for sure. Baby boy got some amazing gifts and we ate lots of yummy food and enjoyed celebrating with friends outside the confines of work and school. There's always something special about removing yourself from those four walls that can be stressful and hassled, then seeing each other 'in the real world' and realizing that socializing is fun! And talking about a newborn baby is even more fun! Have I mentioned that I cannot freaking wait?

I'm sure it's because of my little scare this week but labor & delivery is seeming REALLY close these days. My initial reaction to the idea he might arrive earlier than planned was one of panic for many reasons, but mostly I felt like I had so much more to do to prepare for mister man. But honestly, all that is left on 'The List' are little piddly things like : installing the car seat, doing a final load of baby clothes laundry, packing a hospital bag, and buying some nursing bra/tank supplies. That doesn't mean you can pop out any time soon, Carlos, but if that HAD to happen I'm sure we'd manage just fine. I guess that's one of the perks of being Type-A and ahead of the game, huh?

I've definitely been more tired lately and it's getting to the point where I've reverted back to my first-tri ways of daily naps. But this time, I'm sleeping a lot worse during the night so it's somewhat justified. The other night I got up twice to pee (which is a lot for me!) and could not fall back asleep either time. I was just too uncomfortable and had too many thoughts running through my mind. I finally decided to get up and start the day at 5 am, which scared the crap out of Nate because he thought something was wrong with me. No, of course not, honey--isn't it totally normal to organize baby gifts at 5 am? :)

As far as baby blueberry Carlos goes, he is packing on the el bees right with his momma, and is expected to gain a half a pound for each remaining week, probably tipping the scales at 5.5 pounds or so at this point. He might not grow much more in length but will add a lot more fat in the rest of his time incubating. Another fun fact? His testicles should be headed south this week, descending to the outside of his little body. Growing up so fast, aren't we, baby boy?

So I'm pretty pumped for this upcoming week, mostly because on Monday I have my maternity pictures with the one and only Andrea followed by lunch with her and Erin, followed by another OB appointment (I hope she's still happy with me!). I work the rest of the week after that but I will not work another weekend until after my maternity leave is you know how amazing that feels? I usually work about 7 weekend dates in a 4 month period so to have NONE on the horizon until June or so feels like a huge gift. Just working normal hours during the week? Whatever will I do with myself (oh, who am I kidding---we all know I'll be napping, reading and doing low-key projects as able).

At 35 weeks, the back cover for my pregnancy album is looking pretty darn good. (It already has 108 pages, too, don't worry). Care to peek?
4 through 35
Only 5 more weeks....give or take! Eek!

Ode to Bedrest

Well I survived a whole day on 'bedrest' and honestly, it went by really fast somehow. Definitely an eye-opening experience thus far, some of which begs to be shared on the blog:

-that GIANT jug meant to hold 24 hours worth of pee? I totally owned it. In fact, I topped it off three hours before my time was up so I was hoping I could just be done with it. I called the Lab and they informed me that they do, in fact, need every drop for a full 24 hours. Which meant I had to send Nate out to our recycling bin to hunt down an additional pee container. That's true love right there, folks. Not to mention he got the honor of delivering my pee package to the lab, including one giant jug and one extra water bottle fulla pee. His exact quote was, 'Holy cow! I'm going to need a mountain climbing backpack to carry all of your pee!' Not many times you hear that in a day right? Do those lab folks not understand a pregnant bladder or what? :)

-It's pretty fun to read comments on my blog throughout the day instead of cramming them all in after work. I quite liked it. And honestly, all of the kind words and support mean SO much right now. Thank you guys, every one of them helped immensely.

-Henry is a great napping/lazy slob partner in crime...even if he's on the floor and I'm on the couch. He can totally tell something is up and has been very well-behaved and extra cute just for added effect. Also, our couch is pretty darn comfy when stacked with multiple pillows and surrounded by the necessities: laptop, water, books, candle, phone, remote control, and blood pressure cuff:)

-Oh, speaking of my BP: it's been MUCH better ever since I came home yesterday. All the readings were below my OB's goal of 140/90 and today they even dropped into the 'normal' range with a few 120s/80s! I suppose that could mean that 1. It was a total fluke yesterday, or 2. Bedrest worked to stop whatever is going on with me. We shall see what the boss lady says tomorrow morning at my appointment...I'm hoping she'll let me go back to work at least part time and I'm willing to fight for that chance, at least. I'll update this post later tomorrow as I can.

-Marathons of ANTM rule. Tyra still bugs me, but I love that show.

-Daytime TV totally blows, otherwise. I am not a TV person anyway, but come on! You can only watch so many Baby Story and Birth Day episodes, you know.

-Taking your own blood pressure with a standard cuff and scope is WAY harder than it seems. Seriously.

-Having a loving and supportive husband is one of the best things in the world right now. He's the bomb and I'll leave it at that. :)

-Showering, shaving, thoroughly lotioning and then actually blow drying my hair was the highlight of my entire day. I feel like a new woman and perhaps I should do all of those items more often...if only there were time:) Also, who needs to schedule eyebrow waxing sessions when you can just pluck away those bad boys for hours on end? And manicures? Pish posh. Did that myself today, too. My self-grooming skills increase exponentially while on bedrest, apparently:)

-Baby Carlos likes bedrest more than his mommy. He's been doing a little jig inside my belly a lot more often lately...maybe with all that extra blood flow and added rest, huh? Or maybe I've just stopped to notice it lately....since I'm taking this whole situation as a sign to slow the heck down.

I've decided that even though I haven't FELT abnormally stressed or overworked, my body definitely has a lot of demands on it any given day and perhaps it has just given me a giant smoke signal. Even if my doc does release me back to work tomorrow, I promise to take it easy and stop trying to be superwoman in every aspect of life. I mean, something has to give and it's not going to be the health of my baby boy. As my freak out mode has diminished I've realized that this could be substantially worse than what it is. I'm far enough along in my pregnancy, otherwise healthy, and have a fabulous support system around me to make the best of whatever happens. I'm still hoping to make it until the end, thus having the luxury of complaining about being uncomfortable and overdue:) Plus, if I thought I cherished this pregnancy before I was wrong---I value it even more right now.

So that's that....deep thoughts from the confines of a couch. Check this post tomorrow for updates, or if there is a LOT to say maybe I'll get wild and create a whole new one. Three new posts in three days? Definitely a sign that I have a lot more time on my hands, huh? :)

UPDATE: 2/4/10 at 1:47

The appointment went well this morning! My blood and urine were both clean, no protein or anything scary to make them think this is pre-eclampsia. My BP was 118/76 for them which earned me huge brownie points, I'm sure:) So basically, the doc thinks it could have just been a fluke high BP on Tuesday or possibly the start of something that was cured by the bedrest. As I increase my activity and begin working again, only time will tell if it's too much for my body or if I can handle it just fine. Or as my doctor says, 'Get really lazy, walk slower, sit more, and take care of your little nest of eggs in there.' She wants me to use the pregnancy pass more often and stop trying to be 'crazy type-A do-it-all'. How does she know me so well? :)

So I headed over to work after the appointment, saw a few patients at a leisurely pace, and checked my pressure. It was 134/86 which is still under the goal of 140/90 but inching up there. I used my common sense and decided that was enough for the day and headed home for some more rest. After all, I have two baby showers to attend tomorrow and I work full days on both Saturday and Sunday. I'll have plenty of tests in the upcoming days, that's for sure!

I go back to my OB on Monday and she reiterated again that she was very close to admitting me on Tuesday but she knew she could trust me to follow her directions and not be stupid. I'm taking that to mean she wants me to continue down that 'smart' path and listen to my body and I fully plan on embracing a new low-key mindset.

So overall, great appointment! We'll see how the next few days go but I'm hoping it was a one time thing that we can put behind us and move forward in the next 5 weeks without any more scares! We shall see, I suppose.


So my 34 week appointment did not go so well today. At all. Hence why I'm posting a new post at 3pm instead of being at work. Remember how I used to be that pregnant lady sailing through pregnancy without any complaints or concerns from my doctor? I think it's all changed for the time being.

I had a normal morning at work then headed to my appointment at 12:30. They weighed me first, like always, and I admit I did freak a little bit when I saw I gained 6 pounds in the past two weeks*. Next came time for my blood pressure which at every previous appointment has been in the low 120s over 70s or even less, which is perfectly normal. This time? The nurse didn't say anything right away which was my first sign, then said, 'Um, 152/90'. Obviously, that is NOT good and is insanely high for me. So she said she'd step out and let me calm down a bit, then would come back to check again.

Great, perfect plan. Tell a pregnant girl with abnormally high blood pressure that she needs to calm down and be left alone and I guarantee the only thing that happens is she will go over all of the awful possibilities in her mind the entire time, thus increasing her BP further. I'm a medical person so I know this is what happens but I still tried my hardest to breathe, distract myself, and stay calm. You can probably guess that it didn't work worth a hoot.

Nurse comes back in, BP is still 158/90 and so she says the doctor will see me soon, steps out, and then the mental dialogue with myself REALLY begins.

'OMG is she going to put me on bedrest? I'm supposed to work all week and also on Saturday AND Sunday! I have two baby showers on my day off Friday! How are they going to find coverage for me at work? I can't start my maternity leave now or I'll have NO time off with baby boy! And I can't extend my maternity leave or we won't have an income or health insurance! Is this pre-eclampsia? Is my baby dying? Is it because I've gained a lot of weight and now my body hates me? This can't be happening, it's still too early. Oh God, please don't let her say she's admitting me to the hospital right now and wants to take the baby asap. He's not incubated yet!'

You know, healthy/calm thoughts like that do wonders for your blood pressure, right?

So when the doc comes in I don't get my usual smile and 'you are such an easy patient' face. I get a quizzical look and immediately she starts asking me questions. Is the baby moving? (Um yes, like crazy). Are my hands or feet suddenly swollen? (No, my rings still fit just fine.) Any sharp headaches or blurry vision? (Uh, no.) Any nausea or vomiting? (No). Is there any reason to think your water has broken, any cramps or sharp pains? (No, but I might be feeling a little more crampy lately if you really want to know. I was planning on talking to you about that today but it's nothing sharp or really bothersome, just some more discomfort from a giant head pushing on my nether regions.)

We continued to talk it out and of course I mentioned that maybe the reason for my high BP is because of the offensive number on the scale I had just viewed. She was torn about this, since it's never been an issue before when I post big numbers at an appointment. Or maybe it's because of the number itself, that I'm possibly gaining too much weight? Doc assured me that is not the case at all because 6 pounds in two weeks is perfectly acceptable at this stage in the game. She goes on to tell me that she is still perfectly happy with my weight gain, that I'm still a tall skinny person and most pregnant women would kill to look like me, so I'm not supposed to be a headcase about it. Sorry doc, but flattery will get you nowhere at a time like this you know. She also informs me that even her patient who DOUBLED her body weight going from about 100 pounds to 200 pounds in pregnancy did not have high blood pressure so that is not the cause at all.

She thinks it can be a few options: 1. Just a random fluke, brought on by a rushed morning, an increase in stress created by myself by getting weighed first, and nothing to really worry about. 2. Gestational hypertension, which is basically just high blood pressure in pregnancy without any other symptoms. 3. The beginnings of Pre-Eclampsia, which is definitely worst case scenario.

Because she trusts me to be smart and monitor myself, she is not admitting me to the hospital. But let it be known that if my BP goes above 160/90 that is exactly where I am headed. One thing that made me and my doc feel a little better is the final BP she took before I left: 138/90, which is right under her goal of 140/90. Maybe we are trending in the right direction already?

I'm on 'bedrest'---which means no working, no projects around the house, but I can be up to shower/eat/use the bathroom and other things like that as needed. I have to collect 'every drop' of my pee in this giant jug, which needs to be refrigerated between uses, for 24 hours. Totally disgusting to have my jug of pee in next to our milk, by the way. They did blood work to check my liver enzymes and want my pee back for a protein test tomorrow night. Then on Thursday morning I have another appointment with my OB and she will make some decisions based on the blood and urine tests and how my BP has been running at that point. So I have to take my pressures every 2-4 hours and think happy thoughts, since the goal is to be under 140/80 and it absolutely cannot go over 160/90 or I have to call right away and be admitted.

Of course, I have a million thoughts running through my head right now but the bottom line is I'm trying to stay relaxed and think good thoughts. Trying not to over analyze every little ache and pain, assuming that my vision is getting blurry or my stomach is starting to hurt. For someone who can be a little dramatic at times with a hearty imagination, this is going to be tough. And laying on the couch for the next day and a half (if not longer)? OMG, I've always said if I go on bedrest I'm going to go completely crazy. All I am doing so far is thinking of everything I could be doing around the house instead of laying here and it's only been 2 hours since I got home. Not good, folks.

After Googling a little bit about Pre-Eclampsia against my better judgment I realize that this is all out of my control. I didn't do anything wrong to cause this and one of the risk factors is just being a first-time pregnancy. Heck, it's not even officially Pre-E yet and I'm already assuming the worst. Maybe it's nothing. Maybe when Nate gets home and takes my BP it will be absolutely fine and all this will be is just a little speed bump on my way to a full-term pregnancy (with a few extra days off work thrown into the mix).

I read this Bible verse on a friend's Facebook today when I got home, and I usually avoid getting all preachy on here but this totally hit home for me:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not unto your own understanding, in all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths.

Wasn't I JUST babbling about letting go of control and letting the Big Guy be boss for awhile? Is this a test or what? Because as my Mom says, I had to give over control to God while I waited for my positive pregnancy test results and here I am doing that again. He definitely knows what is supposed to happen with me and the baby and I'm trying to trust Him right now.

So yeah, not so good but perhaps it will turn out to be nothing at all. I suppose worst case is that my BP gets even higher and we have to go to the hospital 6 weeks earlier than planned. Obviously, the bottom line is that I want my baby to be healthy so I'll do whatever it takes right now but I'm just a tad freaked out as you can see. It could be worse...this could be happening much earlier in pregnancy and could be much more severe, I know. But still.

Say a little prayer if you are the praying type! Here's hoping this is a minor scare and blows over quickly!

*You'll notice I don't talk much about actual numbers of weight gain anymore because I've decided it makes me too much of a headcase to focus on the scale on this public blog. I doubt anyone cares NEARLY as much as I do but let's just say it's hard to wrap my head around what the scale tells me and my inner girl-mentality is struggling at bit with it all. Therefore, no totals will be mentioned on this blog until possibly much after delivery

Thirty-Four Weeks

6 more weeks, yo. This is no joke because I'm quite pregnant these days:

I've definitely noticed a difference in my tummy lately and thought it would be fun to do some comparison shots. For instance, the shirt I wore for my 24 week pic is the same one I'm wearing for my 34 week shot. I remember this shirt being pretty roomy, a little ridiculous for such a tiny tummy at 6 months. Well now? Take a peek:
Yeah, it's bulging away from my hips alright. :)

I feel like the top of my belly is rounding out a lot more, giving me that 'basketball belly' appearance that so many predicted I'd have during this pregnancy. In just the past 3 weeks look at how baby Carlos has plumped me up. And yes, that is my semi-outie belly button you see there, too:)

And just because we are headed to the home stretch, let's look at the "4's" for fun, shall we? This is insane. Also, there will not be a 44 week shot no matter what, so this is all we have for the weeks ending in 4.
Enough fun comparisons for you? Good. I never cease to be entertained by the changes my body is making on a daily basis and I must say I'm still loving pregnancy in general. Sure, it's a little harder for me to roll over in bed, and sometimes I can't fall back asleep after I get up to pee in the middle of the night. It's difficult to tie my shoes and if I drop something on the ground I spend a few seconds considering the possibility of just leaving the object there for awhile or perhaps using my monkey toes to pick it up instead of actually bending over. But overall, I'm still a happy pregnant lady. And yes, I know the last 6 weeks might be a little rougher for me but I'm thinking positive thoughts for the time being.

Well, mostly positive thoughts. It seems like in the past week I've let some of my first trimester anxiety creep back into my head. Instead of constantly worrying about losing the pregnancy, now I find myself fretting about the actual delivery process. Will he be positioned in the right way? Will his cord do unruly things and cause major issues? Am I going to be one of those women who needs an emergency C-section due to complications and unforseen events? What if I go into pre-term labor....will baby boy be okay? I mean, can one person really be THIS lucky (or blessed, however you want to look at it) and have an enjoyable pregnancy AND an easy birth? It's taking some mental will power to stay positive and relinquish control to the Big Guy Upstairs yet again....which is what I constantly had to remind myself to do in the beginning stages of this pregnancy, too. I guess I'm just excited to meet mister man and obviously hoping that all goes well from here on out...and I bet that is pretty normal, right?

This week was a fun one because my Mom came for her last pre-baby visit and just left today. We did projects, of course, the main one being our fabric banner nursery project. Did you know that I am obsessed with prints and bright colors?

Picking out 25 fabrics at the quilting store is basically my idea of heaven right now. Henry is very pleased with our choices, as you can see:)


We busted out the sewing machine and both of us expected this project to be relatively easy, and although it wasn't hard it definitely took much longer than we anticipated. But we still managed to enjoy the project and have a little fun with Hank-ster:)

I'll show more 'final nursery reveal' pictures eventually but here is a sneak peak:
I love the end result because it pulls together the whole room and adds a 'cheerfulness' factor, if you ask me. Baby boy's room is almost totally finished but I'm sure I'll create new projects for myself out of boredom. Would you expect anything less?

So I have my 34 week appointment tomorrow, then my next appointment at 36 weeks is when internal exams start along with weekly appointments (I think...not exactly sure). It's hard to wrap my head around the idea that after next appointment I could go into labor and they wouldn't do anything to stop it. It's also hard to believe that it's February and therefore I AM HAVING A BABY NEXT MONTH! OMG, right?

Little blueberry Carlos is really excited to see the world from the outside. I can just tell. And I cannot freaking wait to see his cute face but at the same time, I'm trying to be present in this moment. I have a feeling I'm going to miss being pregnant and I only have 6 more weeks or so. Does anyone else but me find that to be insane??
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