So, I did what any pregnant women would do nowadays, I turned to Facebook. One of my friends recommended that I try TUMS Smoothies. See my reaction, in the video above.
Sunday, December 30, 2012
So, I did what any pregnant women would do nowadays, I turned to Facebook. One of my friends recommended that I try TUMS Smoothies. See my reaction, in the video above.
Saturday, December 29, 2012
Hey tiny baby, would you mind telling me your blood type? How about a kick on the left means your blood is positive, and a kick on the right means your blood is negative - like mine!
Everyone's blood is one of the four main types - A, B,O, or AB. Things get confusing because one also has to know if they have a certain type of protein on the surface of their red blood cells (known as the Rh factor.) If you have the Rh factor, you are Rh-positive. If you don't, you'd be negative, like myself.
Having O negative blood is largely a blessing. You have the ability to save many lives because O negative blood can be donated to anyone. Thus, it is widely referred to as the universal donor. There is, however, one problem...
I. Hate. Needles.
If my tiny baby is Rh-positive, then I may develop antibodies that could harm my baby. Internal forces could be warring against my adorable son, without me even knowing it. Let alone without my consent. I mean seriously, what the heck is my body? SKYNET?
To stop my T-1000 antibody troops before they start their Blitz-Krieg warfare on my baby (special thanks to my history nerd husband for that historical reference), I need a RhoGAM shot.
This shot is literally a pain in the butt - because the needle goes straight into your booty. The shot is large, and painful, and I'll need to have it a couple of times throughout my pregnancy. My first one will be administered next week. I wish I could tell you what is in the RhoGAM shot, how it stops the little Arnold looking terminators from killing my John Connor baby, but I can't. I'm not smart enough to figure it out, and to be honest I am terrified of it. And you're thinking what I'm thinking as I write this, no, my belly button freaks me out more. I know, right?
But, a-ha, there is a slight chance that I may be in the clear. If my hubby's blood is Rh-negative like me, our baby will be Rh-negative! That means that I will not need to get the booty shot. SKYNET be damned. Eighty five percent of people, however, are Rh-positive, which means I will most likely be needing the horrible RhoGAM. Think: Arnold coming back in T2 to defeat the weird silvery goupy guy that took over David Duchovny's spot on the X-files when the X-files started to suck. Woah, brain cramp.
We are finding out hubby's blood type today - so cross your fingers! I may luck out, and be saved from the shots!
Friday, December 28, 2012
The Walking Dead.
Later on, after hours of x rays, I was given morphine to help dull the pain of my badly broken leg. The morphine did little to help, but, boy, did it make me incredibly loopy. I starting seeing things, hearing things, and just felt real funny. (See: David Goes To The Dentist) I don't understand why anyone would want to do it recreationally. It just messes with you. Anyhow, ever since, I've hated blood, needles, and IV's.
If someone else is bleeding, I can jump to the rescue. Trust me, I was an RA at URI, I've seen my fair share.
|I'm pictured in the middle - with the rest of the 2001-2002 Merrow Hall Resident Assistants|
Ever since I found out I was pregnant, I've had to have a series of blood tests. My initial test was to confirm I was pregnant, and I was not prepared. The woman had a difficult time getting to my vein, and wasn't sweet or kind. I warned her that I needed help, and that I couldn't make a fist. My mind paralyzes the arm, and I'm pretty much a limp fish.
I stared off at the wall, looking at a disgusting medical picture (they really need prettier things to look at in blood work rooms by the way) and began to feel the needle prick and the mean lady searching for my vein. I focused on my breathing, but began crying, and kindly asked the woman if she could talk to me while she drew the blood.
Her voice was like that of Bart Simpson's Aunt Selma.
"Yes." I croaked out, excited that she may talk about how beautiful this stage in my life would be!
"Well get used to having your blood taken, it's gonna happen a lot."
And with that, she removed the needle, and I removed myself from the room with a serious chip on my shoulder. I called my lovely hubby, and told him that from here on out, he needed to accompany me to any and all doctors appointments. I needed a cheerleader, and someone to hold my other hand.
Since that first experience, things have gotten better. My hubby brings skittles to each appointment requiring bloodwork. Granted, his bedside manner can still use improvement - he holds my hands, stares at the needle and just waits. Of course, each time I have to remind him to look at me and distract me, and he generally talks about the latest Patriots game, or how Bobby V got fired, or the latest PJD motorcycle on American Chopper.
True, I may have chosen a different topic, and to be fair, I do put him on the spot. I think that's just how a guys brain works. The first thing they usually think of is sports or motorcycles when they need to talk about something out of necessity. But, one things for certain - as silly and useless as his topics may be, he definitely helps me get through what is generally a terrifying process. I still cry, and my arm is still limp, but I have gotten much better. I don't feel the need to punch Selma in the face anymore :)
I only have a few more months to go in my pregnancy, but I know all of this bloodwork will be worth it. This itty bitty baby is making me stronger, in more ways than one.
Tuesday, December 25, 2012
Williams and Sonoma, and has made our merry morning that much more fun!
Even though our nieces still do not know who Darth Vader is, nor why he joined the dark side, they still seemed to enjoy our festive holiday tradition. I can't wait for our itty bitty baby to join in the festivities in years to come! Even though he may not be up for pancakes this time next year, maybe the force can till be with him - thanks to cute geekery clothing like the onesie below.
Thursday, December 20, 2012
Bellabands (which were a present from my darling sister in law. If you have a friend who pregnant for the first time - purchase them one for the holidays. You will win the "best gift giver" title!)
My belly has been carrying really low, and I've looked like I had a massive cupcake top - nevertheless a muffin top. Did I really care? Not too much, because I knew I was pregnant, but I did shy away from pictures...oops - I guess this one made the cut. Look at those squishy lines - I think after I took this picture, I knew I needed a remedy! Yikes!
If you've never worn maternity clothing, just imaganie a glorious world. A world without pain from tight skirts, without having a skinny pair and fat pair of jeans, and best off - a world without muffin tops.
Now I bask in the world of pregnancy pantyhose. It's my dream come true - keeps my legs warm, covers my entire belly, and still has room to grow. If you're pregnant and wear tights, stockings, or pantyhose - do yourself a favor and get some maternity ones ASAP.
My only moment of sadness came when I realized there weren't as many colored tight options for pregnant women. I love wearing a dark dress with bright pink or purple tights, it adds so much personality! If you do a general amazon search for "maternity tights and hosiery" your choices seem to be nude, black, and white.
this from Old Navy!
For now, I've just been wearing my two favorite pairs - with boots. No one can really tell they are a little short. I love how I still have pockets, they are stretchy and hug my legs, and allow me to feel comfortable, even I'm a seated position.
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Monday, December 17, 2012
2. If you can't get enough chocolate, you could be having a girl. I haven't been craving chocolate at all
3. If you can't get enough sour foods, you could be having a boy. Sour patch kids, however, have been a candy of choice
4. If you're having a girl, then the fetal heart rate will be above 140. A boy will have a heart rate below 140. Our itty bitty baby has generally above 140
5. Some say that the shape and fullness of your face during pregnancy can indicate your baby's sex, if people tell you that because your face is round and rosy you are having a girl. Most people say my face hasn't changed a bit
6. Do you have pregnancy acne? Some believe that getting acne during your pregnancy indicates you're carrying a girl. Acne and then some, YUCK!
7. Pick up a key. If you've picked it up by the thinner end, you're having a girl. Picking it up by the bottom, rounder part means a boy is on the way. I picked it up by the big round part
8. The worse the morning sickness, the more likely it is you're having a girl. No morning sickness (but I was tired and cranky in the evenings)
10. If you've been cold throughout the pregnancy, it's a boy. If you've been extra hot during your pregnancy it's a girl. I've been freezing - when does the pregnancy heatwave begin?
|Some of the questions took a little thinking...|
Sunday, December 16, 2012
Ken Macarrone, talked about the many different ways you can make your baby's gender into a big party!
I can't wait until a friend of mine is pregnant so I can help her plan a gender reveal party!
Friday, December 7, 2012
OK you're back. I told you it was awesome. Right?
Anyway, thanks to my super awesome fantastic brilliant husband, we were able to find that ever important passport, and were ready to pack for our babymoon.
Between the recent scary news, holiday stress, and work - Blake and I were ready for vacation. We haven't gone away, just as the two of us, since our honeymoon. After our itty bitty baby arrives, it will be a long time until we do again.
I hope my baby likes dancing, the sound of steel drum bands, and loads of fresh fruit - because I am ready for our babymoon!
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
First we met with a genetic counselor, who sat us down and talked about the findings I our baby's anatomy scan. Then came the first batch of good news, my blood work results had finally come in, and they were spectacular. Based upon blood work and our first ultrasound, our itty bitty baby had an incredibly small chance of having downs or trisomy 18. The counselor stressed the point that the results couldn't look any better in terms of blood work.
Next we learned about what would happen in today's ultrasound, and the other tests we could take in the future. Today's sonographer would not be talkative or smile and tell us "this is it's foot, and that's it's stomach," as others did in the past. Today's ultrasound was all business. This tech was specially trained in looking for markers or signs that there may be something wrong with our baby. After the ultrasound, a specially trained doctor would come and read the results, and go over them with us.
We were escorted into the ultrasound room, where we met our sonographer. She gave me a quick look, and asked me why I was carrying so much stuff. In my arms were sweatpants and Uggs. I looked down at my arms, and told her that because I was wearing a dress I brought additional clothing. Each time I have had an ultrasound done I get super cold, and barely feel my toes. She let me throw on my extra layers, and even though I was completely unfashionable, I was ready to go.
This ultrasound was by far the longest we have had. I held Blake's hand the entire time, and would also hold my breath whenever I felt the ultrasound stop moving. I didn't want to blur the machine's vision at all. We looked at black and white images for twenty minutes, barely understanding what we were looking at. Silently I was asking myself - is that a stomach? How about a kidney? After those twenty images, I finally saw something I could make out, and it brought the biggest smile to my face.
The rest of the ultrasound carried on as before: quiet, serious, and all business. The tech left to meet with the doctor, and Blake and I shared a few tense moments together, and then the doctor returned. She took the ultrasound to my belly as well, and after a couple of minutes joked with us about how our itty bitty baby was already into yoga.
|Plow in yoga- what our itty bitty baby was trying to do|
She gave us a big smile and told us "stop your worrying. Everything looks fine." With that, she left the room. I left the building in a sort of dream state, sweatpants and Uggs still worn under my nice work dress. I told Blake I wanted to celebrate by going out for tacos. My non-pregnant self would celebrate with a big marguerita, but tacos would do for now.
While munching away on chips and salsa I noticed that Blake had tears in his eyes. He told me that he had been worried sick all along, but needed to hide it inside and be strong for me over the past few days. Hearing this news was a godsend. For me, the tears came later. I was in shock. I had gone through so much over those days, all the while trying to mask my pain, that it took me a few days to digest the good news. We met with my OBGYn the next day, and still have a long way to go until the baby is born, but for now, our most recent fear can be put to rest.
My itty bitty baby is strong, a blossoming yogi, and loves waving hi to it's parents.
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
Receiving a phone call while driving can be dangerous enough, but it becomes perilous when you are driving and you hear bad news. I managed to stay safe, even though tears were slipping out of my eyes, and my voice was cracking.
My doctor had called to let me know that during my anatomy scan, they found cysts on my baby's brain. They are technically called choroid plexus cysts, and they are on both the left and right sides of the brain. Hearing that alone is terrifying for a mom to be, but the news got worse. Sometimes these cysts do absolutely nothing to a child. They can dissolve and go away, or possibly stay I the brain throughout their adulthood. These types of cysts do not cause any problems, and the child grows up being able to learn and function as if nothing had happened. The second option is that these cysts could be a small marker - or indication - that the baby has Down Syndrome.
After hearing this, I took a deep breath. Having a child with Down can be challenging, but they are also incredibly loving and sweet gifts. Having been around handicapped individuals all my life, I know that if my itty bitty baby has Down, that it will be loved and cared for all of its life. Things would be different then we had planned, but we would still have a darling child.
The last option is that our itty bitty baby has Trisomy 18, otherwise known as Edwards Syndrome. I'd never heard of Edwards Syndrome. Trisomy 18 is another type of genetic disorder, and happens when there is extra material from chromosome 18. The majority of the babies that have this disorder pass away before birth, and the ones that do, rarely survive beyond the first week of life. Some have survived to their teenage years, with serious medical and developmental problems. My heart sank, tears started flowing, and that's when my itty bitty baby began kicking up a storm.
We had decided to take various tests because I wanted to prepare myself if I had a child with special needs. My age doesn't put me at risk, and neither does my family history, but I wanted to be prepared. I never fathomed that I could carry my baby to full term, only to find out it was incompatible with life outside of my womb.
My doctor pleaded with me to not loose sleep, and gave me hope. She said one of the signs of Edwards Syndrome is that the baby has clenched fists, and in one of my ultrasound pictures, it looked like it was holding a hand open. There were more tests I could take, and could also have a level two ultrasound. I chose to have the ultrasound done as soon as possible, as well as meet with a genetic counselor.
After telling my husband the troubling news, we spent the longest 5 days of our lives trying to be positive. I went to work, with a big smile on my face, masking the fear welling inside of me. Family and friends asked us about the baby, and I would send generic answers their way, and immediately change the conversation. I woke up every morning sweating and crying, having had nightmares of the worst kind, and would cry in Blake's arms until I was calmed down. He assured me that we were doing all we could, and that we would get through this together.
Finally, the day of our level 2 ultrasound arrived.
*Please note, I am not a doctor or medical professional. I write about procedures and conditions as I understand them after talking with my doctor, as well as other research. Please ask your medical professionals for more information about Choroid Plexus Cysts, Down Syndrome, or Trisomy 18.*
Monday, December 3, 2012
I'm afraid someone will poke my belly button and the hole will erupt, as if someone pulled out a bathroom plug. I know it used to be attached to my umbilical cord, but what the heck's on the other side now? An empty tube? I've asked a few friends of mine in the medical community, but none of them seem to be belly button experts. Belly Button Experts, or BBE's, seem to be few and far between. And probably for good reason. More than likely they're just as freaky as there expertise. I kid :) Kinda.
Sorry, I digress. Back to the point...
Why has this fear emerged? Because now that I am further along in my pregnancy, a darling baby bump has arrived on my tummy. It's actually really cute. As my itty bitty baby grows, however, it seems like the depth of my belly button is doing the opposite. That sickening little chasm that shall not be named ( Yes, I just likened my belly button to Voldemort ) seems shallower than I recall.
What's more is that it hit me yesterday that many women's belly buttons stick out at the end - as if they were a fully cooked turkey and their pop up timer went "bing! All done!" Is mine going to do that? What pushes it out? Will I actually be able to see the inside of my belly button? Ahhhhhhhhhhh!
As completely, and irrationally freaked out as I am, I know that my belly button changing is now inevitable. I will concede that horrible point. I know it's one if the many changes that I will go through. That being said, there are no chapters in my mommy-to-be must read books called "belly button changes," so if you have any insight as to what I can expect, your comments would be greatly appreciated.
What happened to your belly button when you were pregnant?
Sunday, December 2, 2012
hemiplegia. She was born perfectly healthy, but at a mere two weeks old, she caught a terrible virus which all but ruined half of her brain. She can not speak, can not walk without assistance, and suffers from many ailments as well as seizures. I grew up having specialized and medically trained babysitters, and spent most holidays at home with our family of five because loud groups would startle her.
|My mom, my sister Jeannie, and I dancing at my wedding.|
I decided to have the elective screening done, which involes bloodwork and an ultrasound. The results take an incredibly long time. If needed, I may do other tests. Having these tests done is my decision, and is not easy. It's scary, adds suspicion and worry, but can also bring calmness and answers. I hope and pray my tiny baby is perfectly healthy, and promise to love it, no matter what these tests show.