Monday, October 28, 2013

30 weeks: Pregnancy meme

Bi-weekly Update:

How far along: 30 Weeks, 3 days. Can you believe it? (In the Joe Castiglione voice)

Baby is the size of a:  Head of Cabbage. Yum... the problem with comparing your child with food.. sometimes it makes you hungry.
Total weight gain: Up 14, so 3 more pounds in the last 2 weeks. I really haven't changed my eating habits at all!
Maternity clothes: You know it. 
Stretch marks: May beeeeee... saw something this morning. Not sure if it was a sleep line or a stretch mark. I am thinking sleep line because it faded away when I checked a minute ago.. but it's in different light now.
Sleep: Harder to get to and stay asleep. I'm sore and restless
Best moment since last update: Cheating and looking at my registry, a few things have been purchased! SO exciting.
Miss anything: Sleep; hot chocolate and Baily's
Movement: Yep, a lot. I get nervous when I don't feel baby now. Once in awhile it hurts now.
Food cravings: Salty! yummmm salt. Not swollen so I'm calling it ok
Anything making you queasy or sick: Yes, but it's random. I threw up my whole dinner the other night :(
Have you started to show yet: Yes- a lot.
Sex: 10 weeks to go (give or take) for the big reveal

Labor signs: No, but I'm going to pack a bag soon
Belly button in or out: Still in, but shallow and stretched.

Wedding rings on or off: On, no swelling at all, knock on wood.
Happy or moody most of the time: Sick, so not so happy at the moment
Looking forward to: My shower and my parents coming home from vacation. I don't like that they're away :(

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

28 Weeks: Pregnancy Meme

Bi-weekly Update:

How far along: 28 Weeks, 5 days: I know I'm late.. I was waiting on our growth scan- which was yesterday :)

Baby is the size of an: Eggplant per the baby sites, but as of yesterday baby was 2lbs 14oz... big and measuring ahead! 2.91lbs is the average for 30 weeks!
Total weight gain: Up 11, that's 4 pounds in 2.5 weeks. Yikes. Be careful what you wish for.
Maternity clothes: You know it. 
Stretch marks: None yet.. hoping to stay that way
Sleep: Harder to get to and stay asleep. I'm sore and restless
Best moment since last update: Seeing baby on the scan- all looking good :)
Miss anything: Sleep
Movement: Yep, a lot. I get nervous when I don't feel baby now.
Food cravings: No cravings. Sometimes I'm hungry, other times not so much. I still am throwing up occasionally. This will never change I think.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Yes, but it's random.
Have you started to show yet: Yes
Sex: I almost asked yesterday, happy I didn't.. now hub would be mad if we found out. Trying to decide how we want to be told- by the midwife? Will hub peak and tell me? Should I look and tell him? Look together? EXCITING

Labor signs: No, but I have hub on the "you better answer your phone in case I'm in labor" leash.
Belly button in or out: Still in, but shallow and stretched.

Wedding rings on or off: On, no swelling at all, knock on wood.
Happy or moody most of the time: Most of the time I'm just emotional.. I cry at everything.
Looking forward to: My shower? I'll be 33 weeks and a few days then. I've hit the end of the micro preemie fears. Next goal is now 32 weeks when the baby would no longer be "very premature".

Per this graphic from the BJM paper "Prediction of survival for preterm births by weight and gestational age: retrospective population based study" with my 1304gram 29(ish) week baby, we're looking at a 90% survival rate, at 32 weeks, even if baby doesn't gain an ounce (in theory) survival is at 99%. CRAZY.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

October 15th

It's pregnancy and infant loss awareness day.

Remembering today my friends and family members who have experienced loss and their babies along with my Blue Sunday. 

Especially for JAM and their baby Cory Alex, and all others on their first Remembrance Day. I am happy to say, JAM are now 20 weeks with a healthy little one on the way! 

This is my bamboo plant, sent to me with much love by my army wife family. I'll post a pic of it now, once I'm home. It's still thriving and reminding me daily that there is life after loss. 

Monday, October 14, 2013

On (My) Loss: Why the "pain olympics" are insane- and harmful

It is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month here in the USA.

I've decided against any of the memorial, month-long challenges for the sake of my dwindling sanity, but I can't let it pass saying nothing. What I'm saying though, might not conform.

I'll start this way: I was reading an online message board and there was a poll "Which is worse, to lose your spouse or your child". This question blew my mind. First, it is totally wrong-thinking. You can't compare losing your spouse to losing your child. They are totally different. It's like asking: "would you rather be stranded in outer space or lose your limbs". They aren't comparable in any real way. Apples and Boats. A child is a part of you, figuratively and literally, your spouse is (ideally) your best friend, lover, co-parent and partner. What "lose your child " referred to in this question was first trimester pregnancy loss. I was blown away by the results:

* I am fortunate enough to  have had my hub return home safely from a war zone. Before getting him back, I contemplated really losing him. I don't know what it would be like, but I have had to plan his funeral.

The results were (to me) stunning:

Which would be worse
Loss of a husband
Lose of a child
Both as devastating
Total Votes: 220

Hub and I had a series of very serious conversations at the start of our TTC journey, one of which was "If it is a save mom or save the baby" situation in the birth room, what are we going to do. The answer was save me.

It was a hard decision to come to, but at the end of the day, my hub said he couldn't go on without me, raising a baby that took my place in the world. It would have been a Pyrrhic victory on my part- have a child I can never live in the same world as. We can always try again, we thought.

As it turns out, it was never that easy. We had our own bout of wrong thinking. I miss my baby. I still miss Blue Sunday. Take Two is not Blue Sunday, and never will be. You can't just "try again". That said.... trading my spouse of (then) five years, my best friend and partner of 12 for my unborn's an impossible choice.

Luckily, usually you don't get to choose, not in any real way. This person or that one? This disease or that accident? Fast or slow? Sooner or later? Early miscarriage, late miscarriage or infant loss? Sure, we "chose" to let Blue Sunday go, but only because that was inevitable. If I could have bestowed on my child good health, no matter the material cost, it would have been done.

Even choosing to let Blue Sunday go, it hurt. Horribly. If (please no) something were to happen where hub would really need to chose between Take Two and me at the end of pregnancy, I don't know what he'd chose. I don't know if his decision would change after we get to know the baby for days, weeks or years.

It would been horrible for him either way.

This was all to come to what I wanted to say: I always felt out of step with the loss community. I lost my Blue Sunday, that is unquestionably true. However, I had the ability to control the situation an iota. Some don't think TFMR moms "count".

In some small way I had a choice, a choice to lose my child, and I chose to let Blue Sunday go.
It was terrible none-the-less.

I was in a situation where some women would chose to give the life of the person they married and started a family with rather than live through.

I am still a loss mom.

I belong.

Miscarriage is a horrible, awful experience. I mourned my own miscarriage, though the pregnancy was woefully timed. I experienced a TFMR and mourned that as well. I don't think it is a worthy exercise to play which is worse. I think there are levels of bad in this situation, but it doesn't really matter what I think. Everyone who is hurting deserves to feel that hurt is acknowledged and valid. If you lost a pregnancy at 3weeks and 5days there is no reason you don't belong as much as I do, or a full term still birth mom does. Life doesn't often let us choose how, who and when we lose/ experience loss- for those of us who have been in that situation, it is heartbreaking none-the-less.

Please remember those who terminated for what they deemed as necessity on these loss days. It is heartbreaking for us, too. No one benefits when we compare loss and keep score of what is worse. It all sucks.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

The Empty Room- An Update

I wrote this post back in March- about a month before we conceived Take Two.

You should go ahead and read it so that I don't have to do a re-hash. I'll wait....

So the cycle after removing that condom tin from my walls, I was pregnant. Coincidence? Most definitely, but an intriguing one, right? Still, progress in that room was moving at a glacial pace, even as pregnancy progressed. Walls were down the snow hindering our rubble removal melted and little changed. Hub didn't really have the heart to start on the room in earnest. There was always an excuse, a more pressing project, or just one more appointment-hurdle to jump before we could 'really start'.

Then all the excuses started melting away: Confirmation it was just one baby, passing the NT scan (minus Next Tuesday being herself), clear Panorama test, crossing into the 'safe' zone of the second trimester,and then  finally the clear anatomy scan. Though all these hurdles, we slowly, slowly worked on the room. Dry wall went up, was tapped and mudded, was primed and painted. The floors were finished, the trim cut, hung, primed and painted. Finally this weekend the finishing touches are being made- new doors, last touch-up coat of paint, new ceiling lamp fixture.

Oh yeah.. and this....

There is a crib in what was the nursery, and then the cats' room, and then the empty room... and now again is finally the nursery.

This is hub, transitioning to daddy....

It's all so weird.

(NOTE from the great re-posting re-read: This made me cry. It's been so long since I'd thought about that room as anything but Bub's room. It was such a painful room.. and now holds some of my happiest moments of the day)

Wednesday, October 2, 2013


I am so overwhelmed.

I know people say this all the time, but I mean I am overwhelmed in a chronically, almost debilitating way.
This isn't: OMG I have 2 finals, Christmas shopping and family drama to deal with.
This is: OMG my entire life is about to change while simultaneously falling apart!

I am nearly crying at my desk because I am interviewing people to fill in for me over my leave and I don't want either of them to be disappointed. Seriously.

When I get overwhelmed I do this really maladaptive thing where I take on more new tasks so that I can accomplish something I want to get done. Like right now, I am writing a new blog post instead of choosing a candidate, answering e-mails, registering for baby stuff, dealing with finances and scheduling the rest of my day. On top of that behavior, I also become a flighty, unfocused space cadet. Essentially, I become the stereotypical blonde that I have never been. I have TWO emails open, this post and three articles I am "reading".

I thought may be addressing all the reasons I'm stressed will help. I like seeing things in lists. So here you are- my life:

1) Construction Destruction- My house is under serious renovation. There is no living room, hallway, walls or ceiling in the stair way or upstairs foyer. All those places are studs and flooring. Really, that's it. The living room windows will take another week to come in, the eletrician needs another 5 days or so and we need to insulate. THEN we can hire a dry-waller. This leads to issue 2.

2) Our Government Sucks Balls- I'm from the USA (obviously?) and not especially political (NOTE from the great re-posting: Bald-faced lie. I am very political- I just hate all of them). I really don't like either party, but I'm not apathetic by any means. I get that people who go into politics are a type- egocentric, right-fighters, have strongly held beliefs. Those attributes don't make compromise, humility and working together very easy... but that's their job. Because they can't do their job, my hub doesn't have drill this month- that's about 500$- also known about the remainder due to the electrician. We are fortunate that because hub was deployed the government pays him to go to school. I'm not saying this is something that we need to have provided to us as a vet family, but it is something that is 1) offered and 2) promised. They are now saying that GI Bill benefits will continued to be paid but- oops- they might not actually have the cash on hand to pay it.... so it won't be paid, right? That's 1300.... also know as about what we will owe a dry-waller. I am reasonably sure this means DIY construction completion.. at least we gain a weekend..?

3) Work Does Too- I have super awesome peers. Everything else is a nightmare. I am immersed in a project that is going to take about 8 hours of work.. that I KNOW no one is going to look at. It is a "need to have it now" emergency to produce it. Are we aware of #2? The reason for #2 is a government shutdown. This includes Federal Drug Regulation authorities. There is no one to process new trials IF we decided to do one based on the work I'm doing that no one is going to look at anyways. Yesterday we FedEx'ed something to the government. it was closed and Fed-Ex returned to sender. Almost funny.. almost. My bonus is tied to meeting certain deadlines as a company.. getting this in was one of them. We have now missed the goal.

4) Apparently I Might Get a Baby... And That Means A LOT of Planning- This is a great news/ slightly stressful news situation. Overall this a totally wonderful, awesome, fantastic things. Clearly. That said, after having a loss, and being so close and losing it all, it's hard to be purely excited. There is always the fear of something awful happening again.I focus on the small details.. and it is making me crazy. I am now stuck in a state of mild panic- I want to plan the little details (curtain color? rug? stroller type?) but I'm too afraid of hexing my good luck thus far.