Saturday, September 27, 2008

Since My Last Post...

I have not felt much like posting in a while, mostly I just did not have anything to say. I do want to thank everyone who e-mailed, called, send cards and flowers and handed out the hugs! All the love and support have really made all the difference to me.

To give you all an update on what's been going on, Smug-Hub and I went to Williamsburg last weekend to help Marie and Justin (our wedding photographers) with a wedding they were doing both the flowers and taking pictures. We also wanted to get out of town for our 1 year anniversary, not to mention, just getting out of the house was really appealing.

The trip was really nice. Friday we were most of the day in Roanoke at Marie and Justin's putting together all the bouquets and table arrangements. We laughed a lot and had fun and I feel like I learned a bit about flower arranging and I could help again if they needed it. We left Roanoke about 6pm and got into Williamsburg about 10:30 (mostly because the guy leading our wagon train was a VERY slow driver). We got the flowers and supplies unloaded and then found our hotel. It was really not nice, there was a musty or mold smell that was really strong and while you got used to it after a while, I felt like I was getting a cold the whole time we were there. I am fine now that we are home.

Saturday we helped get everything set up and ready for the wedding and then attended the reception. It was OK, but it helped us appreciate our wedding and stuff more. They cut a lot of corners and it really showed.The cake was not even eatable and the poor bride had major panty line going on - I can't believe no one told her! Sunday we went to the colonial Williamsburg area. They have people in period costume and lots of old restored buildings that house little shops and stuff. Then we went to the outlet shops and picked up a few things. The prices were not as low as I would have liked to see, a 10% discount is not really worth it. That night we went to this really good Italian place for dinner, then back to the hotel to rest our aching feet and legs!

Monday we went to Jamestown, which was really cool and we stayed there the whole day. There is a recreated Indian village, settlers fort and ships! They did a tour of everything which was really cool, then we looked a the art gallery which had a collection of watercolors from John White who was on the first ship to explore this area. The art was on loan from the British museum and will probably not be back here for along time. Then we went to the museum area and spent the rest of the day there. They were closed and kicking people out when we left!

We talked about the baby some, but mostly we tried to concentrate on celebrating our first year together and talked about the years to come and what we want to see happen in the years we have coming. I am really struggling with guilt. The weekend that we got pregnant was the weekend of the Outdoor Classic. I ate crappy food, did not get any water (felt really dehydrated) and was on my feet for really long hours. This was the time in which the baby would have been trying to attach and start growing. I have a hard time believing that my behavior over that weekend was not to blame. Yet, Smug-Hub tells me that children are born to starving, disease ridden women in third-world countries all the time, and babies are born to crack heads and such. It is just hard to place no blame on myself when it was my body that was not up to the task, my body that failed.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

My Loss

Tonight we lost our baby. I guess that we really lost her almost as son as we knew she was there, but tonight we were told that we will not be parents in May. I had been bleeding a bit, but since I was feeling such strong morning sickness, we really felt like everything would be OK. It turns out that the hormone that indicates pregnancy dropped from 130 to 37 in two days. 130 is still very low and thus indicates that I had miscarried about 2 weeks ago. My doctor told me that my nausea may be caused by all the trauma that my body was going though.

My doctor called me from her home, on her day off. She had gotten into the computer from home and looked up my results. I really appreciate that. She could have waited until she was back on duty tomorrow morning to check for my results, but she was thinking about me and took the time to let me know as soon as she could.

When she called I was still at work, and I closed by door and cried a while. Then I called Smug-Hub and he came to my office and we held each other for a bit. Then we made our hasty escape to avoid all the well wishers and morning sickness advice. I called my family from the car on the way home and they are, in turn, going to call others so I don't have to. I have turned my phone off and just want to be alone for a while.

When we got home Smug-Hub called his mother. He had been so strong until then, holding me and telling me that it wasn't my fault and that it would be OK. I held him close while he called and told his mother the news. I could feel is body heave and shake with the effort to keep his voice, tears and emotions in check. I held him tighter and wiped away the tears that escaped him.

He is asleep now and I wish so much that I could join him. I took a long hot shower, but am still nauseous. I guess that I need to try to eat something and maybe turn on the TV, get my mind on something else.

My heart and head are having a massive whirlwind of thoughts and emotions right now. I feel angry, sad, relieved to know something definite. I want to try again, and yet never want to try again. How is it possible to feel two things equally that are polar opposites? What would a new pregnancy be? A replacement? I loved THIS baby, I spent hours talking to THIS baby. How is another baby going to be able to fill this empty place in me??

I really do trust God and I know that if this did not happen then it was for the best, but that doesn't really ease this pain.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Morning Sickness = Good Thing!

We had a really bad scare yesterday. I woke up bleeding, not a lot, but enough to cause us to panic. We went to the doctor and unfortunately since I am only 5 weeks along, they can't really do anything. They took some blood and will take more tomorrow, they will compare the hormone levels to determine if things seem like they are progressing normally. My doctor told me that while it is not the norm to have some bleeding and cramping early in pregnancy, it is not all that uncommon either. She did not try to give us false hope, but did explain that my still having morning sickness was a good sign.

I talked to a couple of people and everyone seems to know someone who had something like this and turned out to have a totally normal pregnancy. I also had a long talk with God and finally decided that worrying and stressing about this was not going to be good for the baby, and that worrying and stressing would not do any good anyway. I told God that it was in his hands and I would trust that he knows what is best for Smug-Hub and I and this baby.

This morning most of the cramping had stopped and while there is still some bleeding, I believe it is less than yesterday. I am also having the most horrible morning sickness (at least to me) ever! These are all good signs that things are still ok. We won't know about the blood work until Thursday and won't be able to have an ultrasound until the end of next week, but we have decided to think positively until we know something otherwise. I would think that if I were having a miscarriage I would be bleeding a lot and having really bad cramps and no morning sickness, so I have faith that everything is fine.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Smug-Sister Warned Me There Would Be Nights Like This!

A few days ago I got a text message from Smug-Sister letting me know that sometimes in pregnancy your sleep can get really messed up and you can have really strange dreams. So, last night I had this dream about watching my dad dying. It was so real and so painful that I when I woke up I was already crying. I cried in bed for about 20 minutes, I just couldn't shake the dream. Smug-Hub never really woke up, but in his sleep he knew that I was upset and rolled over to wrap his arms around me in comfort. But, I still couldn't calm down, so I got up. This was 4am. I was crying so hard that I thought I was going to get choked and throw up. I finally was able to calm down and have some sparkling water, OJ and some crackers.

I finally was able to fall asleep on the couch for a few minutes at a time. I found myself feeling afraid of falling asleep for fear of falling back into my dream.

I have been feeling tired and sickly all day as a result. I tried to get out of the funk by going to a few yard sales with Smug-Hub and Mom and we did find a few one-piece things for the new baby, but the sales were slim pickings. I am also finding that I am going to be very picky about the stuff I buy for the baby. If it comes from a yard sale it has to be in the packaging or otherwise pristine. It can't come from a smoking household, and it has to be washable. Otherwise, the stuff for the new baby is going to have to be new. We saw some stuff, like an Eddie Bower diaper bag for $2, but it was stained and dirty. My baby deserves the best, not some stained, filthy crap!

I have been resting on and off with getting the house cleaned up. I am not going to have the energy to clean the bathrooms or dust and vacuum, but all the clutter is picked up, the kitchen is clean and the laundry is going, so I am happy with that.

I need to make up a grocery list and get to the store today and I really want to go to mass tomorrow, but other than that I am going to listen to my body and do lots of resting!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Morning Sickness or Normal Reaction to Big News??

I think that I am actually having mild morning sickness. I wake up feeling OK, but then start to feel bad soon after getting up. My head aches, I feel tired and achy all over, slightly sick to my stomach with waves of feeling like I might throw up, but they pass quickly. I feel this way until about noon, when I have had a few things to eat. One day it was OJ and yogurt, another day it was granola and yogurt and today was Kashi with soy milk. Once I get several things on my stomach and I get fully woken up for the day and I start focusing on what I have to get accomplished instead of analyzing every "symptom" I feel fine.

Now, since I am normally prone to an upset stomach for every little reason, is this news of being pregnant (which is like, the biggest news of my life) causing these little bouts of upset? Or, is this morning sickness?

Since I am feeling 100% wonderful right now (with the exception of this little cough that won't go away) I am thinking that morning sickness would be the cause. My reasoning is this; I am still as bowled over by the news that I am carrying new life now as I was this morning. I am still getting people's advice, questions and horror stories (BTW on that... WTF? Why would a newly pregnant person want to hear about miscarriages, horrific birth's, birth defects, and arrogant doctors??). So, I really think that morning sickness has to be the cause.

So, hooray!! I am having normal symptoms!!

This actually does make me feel better!

Now, I am off to the Greek Festival! We were planning on going tomorrow for lunch, but then we got to thinking, why? We have to eat both dinner tonight and lunch tomorrow, so why not just go to both??

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Pregnancy Advice

The following was written by a friend of ours today when we made the announcement today that we were pregnant!

So my little talk with you on the birds and the bees worked. Congratulations. But now that you’ve joined the fraternity of men who have lived or are living with pregnant women, there is much more that you’ll need to learn. Remember that while trying and not succeeding at making a baby is still fun, making a mistake in dealing with a pregnant woman is neither fun nor safe. I’d welcome Mullen and Dan (aka Captain Impregnation) to add their own wisdom to my list. But until they do, Smug-Hub, be sure to memorize and commit to daily life the following (think of this as the stuff you might read if "What to Expect If You’re Expecting" had been written by a man):

1.The tendency of women to be weepy while pregnant is grossly overstated. I’ve known men who were afraid to watch TV or movies with a pregnant woman for fear that she might break into tears over seemingly not sad programming. This is silly. Simply avoid these few genres, and you’ll be ok.
Silent movies
A blank fuzzy screen
A black, turned off screen
The empty box that the TV came in

2. Tell your buddies that your wife is getting big enough to show drive in movies on, and we laugh. Tell your wife that, and she disembowels you.

3. They say a man spends 9 months trying to get out of the womb, and the rest of his life trying to get back into it. Well guess what, that little uertine tenant that Smug-Mama is toting around now owns everything South of the fallopian exits and North of Camp Cervix. Sometime soon, and progressively so as the pregnancy progresses, you’ll come to realize that you are a visitor there. Yes, I’m talking about coital sessions. I can’t say exactly when it dawned on me, but I began to feel that I wasn’t making love, but rather making quick visits in Wombville. There’s daddy, there’s daddy, there’s daddy. Think about it. You’ll get what I mean.

4. As Smug-Mama gets bigger, she’ll eventually lose sight of her feet. If you see her wearing two different shoes, don’t tell her. She’ll just cry. Or hit you. Or both.

5. If Smug-Mama has morning sickness or afternoon sickness or evening sickness or any of the related nauseas related to pregnancy, don’t ask her if she wants a Crisco sandwich, or a tub of butter with a spoon. She won’t like it.

6. Some night you’ll come home to find Smug-Mama eating a pickle, Tang and liver sandwich. If she made one for you, too, just eat it. It makes sense to her hormonally fried sense of taste at that moment, so it’s best that you don’t question it. Just ask Maggie about her weird pregnancy food cravings…

7. Some time soon you’ll have that strange experience of seeing your wife at an OB/GYN visit. I wish I could take credit for this particular mental picture that helped me not get weirded out about a doctor elbow deep, but it was Howie Mandell (pre-Deal or No Deal) who once said that he just tried to think of his wife as a Muppet, and the doctor as Jim Hensen.

8. Right before Smug-Mama gives birth, she’ll go through a short but intense period of activity called Nesting. Doctors say this is nature giving her that last bit of energy to have the home ready. She won’t need that. Trust me, she’ll have altered every stairway, cabinet, electric plug, etc. in your home in preparation for a baby. You’ll have painted, assembled furniture and more to be ready. So what is she to do with the hormonally induced urge to work around the house? I say teach her to tie flies. Or make sure that are pie making ingredients in the house. That way she can keep busy and not waste the moment.

9. As Smug-Mama’s weight and center of gravity shift, you’ll note that her walk changes as well. A pregnant woman’s walk is sort of an amalgam of Fred Sanford and the mummy in black and white horror movies. Even how she sits down changes. Instead of alighting gracefully on a seat, she’ll instead simply aim and drop. Don’t mock either of these, because while the mass under her elastic waistband seems to make her less mobile, if she’s angry enough, she’ll suddenly have the speed of Carl Lewis and the ferocity of a rabid wolverine. Remember that scene in Predator where the alien pulls out the Indian dude’s spine? She’ll do that to you.

10. If you want to be a hero, keep Tums in your nightstand. Trust me, she’ll need them.

11. Start now learning all the Muppets and Sesame Street songs. You’ll need these and more once you’re up rocking a crying baby in the spring. You must also practice moving in three directions at once. To quiet a crying baby, you often need to rotate your torso back and forth, while bouncing up and down and patting the baby’s back all at the same time.

12. If you and Smug-Mama are sitting on the couch watching TV, don’t ask her if you can sit your drink on her belly. It’s practical, I know, but she won’t go for it.

It's 4am and I Must be Nauseous

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I awoke at what is becoming my usual time of 4 am feeling rather like I would enjoy puking my guts up. I went to the bathroom and then pulled out the sparkling water and crackers. After a bit I started feeling better and even had some soy yogurt. I showered and got ready for work and about that time I felt like I needed to go back to sleep...

I laid down until Smug-Hub was ready to leave, and the drive to work was nice. I felt like I was in a very good mood and feeling fine. Once I got to work, I thought that I should have my cereal before I got too hungry, but I only got about half of it down, before I started feeling like hurling would again be a good idea. I am currently sipping on some Ginger Ale and hoping that I will feel up to making the morning meeting. I am not even thinking about the fact that I have the make it through several more hours, and then head straight to class for 3 hours tonight!!

Our hand has been forced. We have to tell people at work today. Mom told Ben (Ben has been a friend of our family for about 20+ years), Ben is friends with M. (M. is a friend of mine who up until recently worked with me) I called M. to tell him before Ben told him and to ask him not to tell anyone here at the office as we did not want to start telling anyone yet. M. then tells T. (an evil bitch who hates me and who no longer works for my company). T. then called up C.(someone here at work, who has a tendency to spill others secrets). C. tells me yesterday that she knows.

There are people here at the office that will be offended if they hear it from someone else, and since I feel like it is going to get out sooner rather than later (especially, if people keep seeing my pale face rushing to the restroom). So we are going to put together an e-mail and just get it out there and let the chips fall where they may.

I am not mad at M., I know that this is big news and it is hard to keep it to oneself, but I am hurt that he 1) could not even wait a whole day, and 2) he chose to tell the one person who would do everything in her power to ruin it for me. I know that his thinking was that she doesn't work here anymore, who would she tell, and she hates me, so why would she bother. This just isn't the case. She told C. because she knows that C. can't help but spill the beans.

OK, it is just about time for the morning meeting - do I take the Ginger Ale with me or leave it in my office and hope for the best?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

I Do Not Like Green Beans and Ham!!

Well, here I was thinking that I was not having any morning sickness and then I take a nice walk through the break room on my way back up to my office and wham! I get about knocked over by the stench of cooked (canned) green beans and ham. The lunch ladies were selling it to all the hungry workers today. I thought I was going to puke right then and there! I got back up to my office and drank some water, but I felt like the smell was stuck in my nose hairs and I could not get away from it!!!!! It finally dissipated and I am back to feeling fine now!

I was feeling a little worried last night, like I was not having any pregnancy symptoms and thinking maybe that I was not really pregnant, like maybe all those tests were wrong. I got to talking with a Doula on the phone last night and she said that some women don't have any of those symptoms and if I am a healthy well nourished person, it may be perfectly fine not to feel badly!

I have noticed a lot of low back pain, which is slightly odd for me. Normally my shoulders hurt a lot from being hunched over a desk all day (and night, if I have a class). Low back pain is normally not my issue.

I went to the gym with Sassy last night. We did 30 minutes of the elliptical machine (about 275 calories burned) and a 10 minute cool down on the treadmill (about 45 calories burned). I feel really good about it. I worked up a good sweat, but made sure not to get my heart rate up too high. I also stopped when I started to feel slightly shaky, so I would say that it was a really good start.

Smug-Hub is taking me for a walk along the river (on the Green way) after work tonight if the rain holds off. That will be nice too. I figure that if Sassy walks with me once a week and Smug-Hub walks with me once a week and Mom walks with me once a week I will get 3 days of exercise in at least.

Also, people (family, friends, co-workers) seem to think that I am a freak of nature because I like to plan things and schedule things, so I just want to make it clear that I LOVE planning, I LOVE schedules - to be without them would be very hard for me to deal with and would cause me stress. So, I am going to plan and schedule my little heart out and if at some point something does not work out the way I plan or schedule I will be fine - just look at how I handled my wedding. I did not turn all Bridezilla on anyone, I did not throw a tantrum when I forgot to put in my contacts, I was fine!! I will be fine throughout this pregnancy too!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Pregnancy "The Journal" - Episode 1

Here is what I want to do. I want to use this blog as a way to keep track of exactly what I experience throughout this pregnancy. That doesn't mean that I will cease to blog about other things, but I want to have a way to look back and see what I was doing/feeling/thinking etc. I want to be able to read back over this when my baby is all grown up and she/he will be able to have a real look at what their mommy was like.

I got pregnant on either August 21st or August 24th. These are the days that my husband and I were together while the ovulation test was showing high LH levels. However, my last period started on August 7th so that is when pregnancy starts calculating according to the doctors, books, and websites that I have been on so far. So according to that method of thinking, I am currently in my 5th week of pregnancy.

This is what my belly looks like at 5 weeks of pregnancy (photo taken at 7:45am on 9/9/08). Nothing new and different! I also weighed myself this morning and came in at 175.5. This is actually good. I have been trying to lose weight for a while now and have gone from 183 to 175.5 so I will be happy with that. At my last OB/GYN annual exam, the doctor told me that she did not feel like my weight was an issue. I am tall and therefore can carry more weight without it being a health risk.
I am going to attempt to eat really good and I want to start walking daily to help keep the weight gain to a manageable/ healthy range. I have read that not gaining anything in the first trimester is ideal, but up to 5 pounds is healthy too. I have also read about women that gained like 12 and were totally fine, so I am not going to stress about it too much. I am just going to shoot for being as healthy as possible and leave it at that.
I want to enjoy ever second of being pregnant! I am sort of even looking forward to having morning sickness, just so that I know that everything is going along as it should.
I am feeling slightly weepy about everything. I don't even need to be watching something cute on TV. I can just be thinking about the baby and how soon I will be able to feel it kick and then I will tear up. I have not out and out cried yet, I have been able to blink it all back at this point. The last week or so, I have felt mostly normal PMS type stuff, like being tired, a bit bloated, sore boobs, grouchy, etc. Since I did not know that I was pregnant at that time I can't really be clear on the exact symptoms. I am feeling some slight cramping, which I read is totally normal, but not a little freaky. I keep thinking that it means something bad, and then I starting thinking about the possible bad stuff, and start feeling a little panic that something might go wrong. So, then I have to cut off the negative thinking and tell myself how everything is going to be fine, over and over. I hear that this is normal too.
My boobs are sore, and I would say that they are slightly more sore than they are when I am getting ready to start my period, but not horrible yet. I think that I am outgrowing my bra though, so that will be on the shopping list this weekend. I want something soft and stretchy that will fit now, but expand as I do without hurting me. I will probably invest in a few workout bras too, since the ones I have are already tight.
Again, before I knew that I was pregnant, I had been feeling slightly tired, but not major fatigue. The morning after we found out, I was feeling a little blah, but not generally bad. I was sort of thinking that this was all in my head - I mean really, what really changed between Sunday and Monday? I found out, nothing else - therefore, all in my head.
Today, I feel more generally bad. I am cold and choked on my vitamins and my nose is running just a little (like it does when you are cold). I sort of have that slightly achy feeling like you get when you are coming down with something. God, I really hope that I am not getting sick! I also woke up at 4am unable to get back into a good sleep. I went to bed at 9:30, so not too early - not sure what the deal was with that!
General Thoughts:
I was really surprised to look at the picture above and not feel all grossed out about how fat I look. What I see now is a fairly flat belly that is going to get bigger and bigger with the new life that I have been chosen to carry. I am excited and happy and I can hardly wait to tell people. I have already told the HR lady (she is a good friend too, but I mainly needed insurance advice). I also told another girl, because I really like her and she asked me yesterday and I lied about it and really felt horrible about lying to her. Smug-Hub has told a few people here too, but we are planning to keep it quiet until after the first doctor visit.
I have an appointment on October 3rd at 8:30am - this will be the first exam and everything. They want to do an ultrasound then too, which I think is pretty common now, but I am concerned about doing anything that might have even a .0000001% chance of causing harm. I am also thinking about interviewing a few other doctors to make that I find the best. I really like my doctor, but just like when we were getting married, we wanted to get a few estimates to make sure we got the best, we want to make sure that we get the very best doctor too - our baby deserves to have only the very best! Besides, I am going to be putting my trust, my body, my life, and my baby's life in this person's hands, I have to be able to trust them.
The plan for today is to look online to see if there are local hypnobirthing classes and find out when we should start those. I also want to check out some websites that Becky told me about and call a midwife friend of mine (who is all the way in Florida) to get her thoughts and suggestions for finding a Doula and perhaps someone local that could suggest a good doctor.
Now, I think that I will take myself to the car for a little mid-day nap!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Giving Thanks

Today, I woke up and had to pee about 6:15am. I knew that if I was going to take the pregnancy test today I had to take it then. I was feeling a little nervous about testing since I tested about 10 days past ovulation and got a negative. I debated with myself for a few minutes and then just decided to test.

The control line appeared immediately and then as I tried not to look, this very faint, thin second line began to appear. I thought that I was imagining it, I waited a few more minutes, looking at myself in the mirror and trying to think good thoughts without getting my hopes too high. As the faint line got a bit darker, I became aware that the directions said that even if there was a faint line that meant a positive!

After jumping up and down a bit, I went tearing into the bedroom yelling "Honey, Honey - I'm Pregnant!!" Smug-Hub was sleeping with his CPAP machine on his face, but he woke up and resembled a turtle on its back, we was flailing his arms and legs trying to get the face mask off and sit up at the same time! "Really"? he said. "Let me see the test" After we looked at the test for a while and hugged a lot and held each other and called each other "mom" and "dad" we decided that we needed to take a picture of the test and e-mail it to Smug-Sister. Then we thought that I should run to the store and get more tests, just to make sure that we had not gotten a false positive.

When I was leaving for the store, I texted Smug-Sister and told her to check her e-mail. She called me a few minutes later, she yelled "I see two lines, do I see two lines?" I tested 2 more times getting a positive each time! So , I then called my oldest friend Jen in Chicago and woke her up with the news!

I went over to see Smug-Sister and she had pulled out all her pregnancy books and maternity clothes for me! She did a bit of talking to the belly and being happy about being an aunt!

We called Smug-Hub's mother telling her that she needed to be sure to come here for Christmas since she was a grandmother now - it totally went past her the first time and he had to repeat it, but then she screamed and yelled and was totally excited!

We told my mom that Smug-Hub had gotten her something for her birthday, which is tomorrow, but I thought that he needed to run it by her before tomorrow. So she totally thought that it was going to be a puppy for something embarrassing. She was sitting on the porch when we pulled up and Smug-Hub handed her the little bag containing the positive pregnancy test. She looked confused for a few seconds until it registered in her head what she was looking at. Then she burst into tears which caused both Smug-Hub and I to cry also. She hugged us both and did some talking to my stomach. Her neighbor heard all the commotion, so mom yelled the news to her and she came running over to hug and congratulate us.

After that he went to Dad and Smug-StepMom's, they had food ready for us and when we all sat down, Smug-Hub handed me his phone. I told them that we had a really cool picture on his phone that they should both see. Smug-StepMom stood behind dad and looked over his shoulder. Again, it did not click right away, then dad's face broke into a big grin and he kept saying "Really? Really"? Smug-StepMom started crying!

We then had to call a few aunts, my grandparents and my brother! I was saving it to tell Sassy tonight when she came over, but then she needed to cancel, so I told her over the phone. I could totally hear the happy dance over the phone!

Smug-Hub is currently at Dad's watching the Cowboy's football game and I came home to bake the cake for mom's birthday and to record the events of today on this blog!

I would like to give a special thanks for Becky, for giving me the advice on which test to use - cause today would not have been so special without the right, early response test that she suggested! Thank you Becky!