Hadley’s Birth Story

On Monday, November 6 I was still very pregnant – and very over it. My OB and I had discussed induction once I hit 39 weeks because I was so uncomfortable, but she warned me that other pregnant women past forty weeks had priority for induction. My official and “final” due date was 11/11, so even though I was still a week to go, I wanted that baby OUT. I decided to send my doctor an email asking her to let me know if we could set a date, knowing it had to be scheduled a few days out. Initially I didn’t want a baby to be born via induction on Holly’s birthday (11/9), so that Holly could have her own day, but I knew baby could very well come on her own if she wanted to on that day. So, imagine my surprise on Wednesday morning when I got a call from the hospital labor and deliver department, letting me know I was scheduled for induction at 6:00 a.m. on Thursday, November 9. After talking it over with Matt, we decided we should move forward, as I was swelling like crazy, sick of having fake contractions, and I was getting restless (After all, there’s only so much Netflix binging and Oreo eating one can do.) They’d be birthday twins, and that was that! I didn’t sleep much that night with excited anticipation, and woke up at 5:30 the next morning to shower. While I was in the shower I got a voicemail that I should wait a few hours and go back to sleep, since L&D was packed. I went back to bed, and we got the call at 8:30 that we could come in around 10.

Right before we headed to the hospital! 39 weeks and six days.

I checked in, donned my hideous hospital gown, and met my first two nurses, Harley and Nicole. I felt relieved because I gave them the “Full Alyssa” personality and we all jived well, which was important to me as these women would be getting up close and personal. I got hooked up to the IV and belly monitors, and once it was confirmed that Hadley was doing great, they checked me for dilation. Happily, the amount of contractions I was showing confirmed that I was already in early labor, which I had suspected the night before, but wasn’t getting my hopes up due to the days of false starts I’d been having. At first check I was dilated to a four, so we agreed to use Pitocin to get things moving, with me having naïve hopes that Pitocin would mean I’d be snuggling a newborn in the early afternoon. I call Pitocin the Pit Viper, because it amplified the contractions with Holly from bearable to massive pain very quickly – but maybe that wasn’t the Pitocin and was just labor. Basically, they slowly increased my Pitocin every couple hours, and at this point, I was waiting to get the epidural as the pain wasn’t that bad. This part of labor was pretty boring, and I chitchatted with Matt, texted friends, browsed Facebook, and even shopped on my Groupon app at one point.

One great difference between this labor and Holly’s was that I was allowed to have “clears” this time. It helped so much to have a full belly.

At 2:00, they started cranking the Pitocin faster, and I was bummed that I hadn’t had the baby yet. I had hoped that since this was my second rodeo, I’d basically lift my legs and shoot out a baby. Once the Pitocin was cranked, the contractions started intensifying. At 3:45 I requested my epidural, and I didn’t receive it until 5:00 p.m., and by then, I was ready. They made Matt leave the room which I wasn’t thrilled about, and my anxiety soared as the anesthesiologist fiddled with my back and laced me up. It showed in my blood pressure, which rose to about 160/90, but as soon as the anesthesiologist was done, I instantly felt giddy and calm. I asked if it kicked in that fast, and the anesthesiologist explained it was actually my dopamine levels returning to normal since I had been so nervous. Whew! They gave me a quick hit button to dose myself with more epidural drug, and I didn’t end up using it much until later on.

The next few hours were slow and relaxed, with my birth playlist in the background (lots of Fleet Foxes, Smoke Fairies, Father John Misty, and the occasional electropop song by peeps like St. Vincent.). At 7:00, we had a shift change, and my new nurse, Tiffany, came in. At 9:30, I decided to try to nap, since I had only progressed to a six. I dozed on and off, and at 11:40, I was finally ready to try some “test” pushes. I had accepted at this point that Hadley wanted her own birthday, as we were 20 minutes away from the 10th. The contractions were certainly more intense, but my nurse had warned me to start laying off the quick hit button as that could delay my progress. I wasn’t happy to hear that but agreed to reduce my reliance on the joy juice, and I was impressed how much easier pushing was than with Holly – my body knew what to do, and Tiffany was an excellent coach in guiding me how to breathe.

After a few test pushes, Tiffany gave me a choice – they could call the doctor in now (about midnight) and have me start pushing, but she warned because baby wasn’t exactly in “station” (the lowest position in pelvis), I would probably have to push longer – or, I could try and nap for a bit and baby would likely descend lower into the pelvis, and it would be less pushing.  I always prefer to embrace the lazy way when it comes to physical activity, so I agreed to try and nap, and miraculously, I did. At 12:45, the nurse told me the doctor was on her way, and at that point, I went from calm to “IT’S GO TIME!”. I was having a very hard time holding the baby in at this point – and it sounds weird to type it like that, but they actually had to take my legs out of the stirrups and tell me not to push because she was ready to come out.

Honestly, this was the hardest part of labor – feeling more than anything that I needed to push, but not being able to, and being told not to. At one point I told Matt he better get a glove on and get down there because the baby was coming whether my doctor was there or not. It was actually only 20 minutes between this point and when the doctor arrived, but it felt like eternity as the pressure on my lower back and legs was making me tremble all over.

Finally, my awesome doctor rushed in, threw on her scrubs and booties, and got into position. I took a deep breath, and PUSHED. Lord almighty, did I push – and I pushed HARD and with gusto, and boom – just like that, I felt the baby’s head come out, and summoned all my strength, breathed through the pressure … and felt Hadley descend through me, arriving at 1:14 am, after just one push.

The doctor lifted her up and I had two instant thoughts “Look at all that hair!” and “She’s big!” They put her on my chest, and the medical team noted she wasn’t crying – just looking around, calm and pink. Her tiny hand joined mine and I looked into her eyes for the first time, hers full of wonder, mine full of joy. I was overcome with relief and happiness, and we spent the next 30 minutes snuggling as my doctor delivered my placenta and checked me out. Hadley was 9.2 pounds and 21 inches of rosy-cheeked perfection, delightful little leg rolls, velvety feet, and wispy dark hair.

Happy birthday, Hadley Joy – we’re so happy you’re here.

 

Baby #2 Bumpdate: 39/40 weeks

Spoiler alert: NO BABY! Haha. I get texts and messages all day and sadly, I’ve always had to say “Nope. Nothin’.”

Despite plenty of false starts and hopes of promised inductions, here we are, just a mere four days from my official and “final” due date of 11/11, and we have no baby. (PS, Baby 2 – Holly was here by this time. Just sayin’.)

Baby’s Size: American Shorthair Cat or Watermelon
Weight Gain: 43 pounds. Lost a pound this week because baby is so big I can’t cram as much in my gullet.
Maternity clothes? All day every day.

Best moment the past few weeks: We went to Teppenyaki (the Japanese steakhouse where they cook your food at the table) with my parents and Holly for an early Holly birthday dinner. It was super fun even though she was kind of freaked out by all the fire and lights mere feet from her face! Also, my parents took Holly for a few days this week and Matt and I got to go have a really nice Italian dinner last night. It was deeeeelicious! And despite being anxious about somebody’s pending arrival, I’ve really enjoyed being so lazy and resting on maternity leave, and doing small projects and chores here and there.
Miss anything?
Not waking up to pee every hour and a half, not thinking every twinge is my imminent labor, and HEARTBURN.
Movement: Definitely less this week as she’s out of space in there.
Food cravings: I’ve been craving classic coke, which I’m limiting because sugar, and who needs it; and then prosciutto, and jazz apples. I got some at Trader Joe’s and they are SO GOOD!
Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope.
Gender: Girl!
Symptoms: Sore lower back, waddling, massive belly, fire-breathing-dragon heartburn, tired, crampy with practice contractions.
Happy or moody most of the time: Happy though quick to be annoyed. You should hear my verbal expletives when I read the news. I also have a tendency to delay answering some of the “Anything yet?” texts until I feel more chipper (and sometimes, I just ditch my phone for a few hours because I caaaaan and it’s nice.) It’s nothing personal, but it’s difficult to have to say “No” and share disappointing news that the same old is the same old. This of course, backfires on me, because the longer I take to respond, more people assume I’m in labor. Haha. I know people are just excited, but I can’t win until I can text a photo of a fresh baby!

Image result for have you had that baby yet
Labor signs: What’s so frustrating about being so close is I’ll have several contractions that slowly start to pick up, get more painful, and then… gone. Silence. My OB confirms I’ve been in “prodromal labor” which is basically practice labor and super common for second-time moms. She asked me to call on Monday to see about getting me in for induction, but I haven’t heard back (annoying) and I know it’s because I’m not a priority as all is well and healthy (thankfully), and I’m not quite yet past that official due date mark (C’MOOOOOON Saturday). My next appt is Thursday morning and I’m not leaving until they schedule me a few days out for an induction, just in case. I’m the perfect candidate for induction since my body already has so many signs of being ready for labor – so if it doesn’t happen naturally, we’re gonna MAKE it happen. Boom.

Looking forward to: meeting this kid. One day. It will happen one day… right? Also, my Hollydolly turns 2 on Thursday. Chances are good she’ll have a baby sister as a birthday gift… maybe even the same day?

Allright, citizens of the Internet… send collective thoughts, energy, juju, prayers, and vibes that this kid MOVES ALONG safely, happily, and healthily into the world! I do NOT want to share a bump update next week! Bye! 🙂

Baby #2 Bumpdate: Week 38/39

For Halloween, I’m a pregnant lady. Yup, still! Despite doctors’ estimates I’d go around Halloween (and hey, I guess I still COULD), here I sit with a bouncing, kicking baby bump. But! I’m on maternity leave now, and it’s been awesome to do little projects here and there and rest and prepare mentally for the upcoming newborn days. I slept awfully last night – waking up twice in a sweat (so uncomfortable), having weird dreams, and peeing constantly. But – I remember in the few days before Holly was born, I barely slept at night, so I’ll take it. Just preparation for my upcoming late nights with lil gal. My doctor said I can choose to set an induction date for anytime after this Thursday, so we’ll see how I’m feeling and what I want to do.

Baby’s Size: A Pomeranian
Weight Gain: 44 pounds. I’m not thrilled about it, but I also am not making many efforts to keep it under control. I’ll deal with it after the baby – and I’m actively pursuing the sleeve weight loss surgery later this year, so I know I have work to do, but for now, I’m enjoying just being.
Maternity clothes? All day every day or stretchy dresses.
Best moment the past few weeks: It’s been really fun experiencing Halloween with a near two year old – because she kind of “gets it” this year. We decorated a pumpkin with stickers yesterday and she was so delighted and proud of her creation. Then, this morning, we drove to daycare slowly and looked at all the decorations outside. One advantage of this baby not arriving today is I can’t wait to take Holly trick or treating tonight. She’s going to be a gnome! Also, my work surprised me with a virtual baby shower and were incredibly generous with gifts and advice, and we’ve been receiving gifts here and there. It’s heartwarming to be the recipient of so much kindness and happiness, so that’s awesome 🙂

Miss anything?
Solid sleep, and not having heartburn. Also, the back pain and slowness is getting old. I’ve never been an athlete but I’ve always prided myself on being fairly active, so it’s hard to be a slug.
Movement: Still a fair amount, but not as intense since she’s so big now.

Food cravings: I made Matt go get me some chicken salad over the weekend, and then I’m still craving red meat and ice cubes (Anemia!). We had some epic steaks last night!
Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope.
Gender: Girl!
Symptoms: Sore hips, waddling, massive belly, fire-breathing-dragon heartburn, EXHAUSTED, crampy with practice contractions.
Happy or moody most of the time: My mood has been really even-keeled and positive.
Labor signs: I’m 3 CM dilated and fully effaced, so at this point, it’s just waiting for steady contractions or water breaking. I hope my water breaks because with Holly that was so easy to be like “Oh! It’s time.” My doctor has given me the go-ahead to labor at home for several hours after my water breaks (assuming I feel mostly fine), so I’m looking forward to having a few hours to kind of gather my stuff and try and relax at home while the grandparents head over for Holly duty. I’ve been having a lot of practice contractions which are mostly just annoying to me because they don’t stay steady.

Looking forward to: Trick or treating, seeing my sweet squishy lil babeh, Holly turning 2 on Nov. 9th (we’re not doing anything but will do cake and presents for her), the holidays, and giving birth! (Yeah, I know, it’s odd – but my Labor and Delivery with Holly was great, other than long, so I’m not super nervous, and if anything, it’s empowering and you get the best gift at the end!)

 

Allrighty – let’s hope the next update I make is a “Welcome, baby!” announcement!

Week 36 Bumpdate with Kiddo #2: Are we there yet?

How far along? 36 weeks, measuring 37.5.

Baby’s Size: A Chihuahua!
Weight Gain: 40 pounds. No weight gain the last two weeks and then BOOM! TEN POUNDS! I’m an excellent gainer of weight. I finally have Flintstone feet, so I know I’m swelling a bit. 
Maternity clothes? All day every day or stretchy dresses.
Best moment the past few weeks: We saw Father John Misty on Friday night who is one of my fav musicians. The stadium seating was killer and we left before the encore, but I loved getting to hear some of my fav tunes under the stars at the Greek Theatre. Also, being dismissed by the perinatologist as a “graduate” with a healthy pregnancy. My OB has a perinatologist monitor the pregnancy in addition to appointments with her, and the peri is the guy who would be the problem-finder, so it felt good to get the “Good job! Go have a baby!” send off from him. Also, we’ve been doing some home improvements with the help of my Dad, and I’m enjoying our new recessed lighting and ceiling fans, and I also love the maternity pix my mom took (scattered throughout this post).

Miss anything?
Solid sleep. I was up EIGHT times last night to pee. I’m also really sick right now with a cold, so I know that’s part of it, but dear lord, stick a fork in me, I’m done.

Photo by Lynnette Joy Photography

 

 

Movement: Less kicking, more subtle rolling since she’s out of space in there.
Food cravings: Ice cubes, oreos with milk, sprite.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Having a cold with some chest stuff has trigged my barfiness, so that’s been fun, but that should pass pretty soon.
Gender: Girl!
Symptoms: Sore hips, waddling, massive belly, fire-breathing-dragon heartburn, EXHAUSTED, crampy with practice contractions.
Happy or moody most of the time: I’m in good spirits and ready to meet my second lil’ gal.
Labor signs: I’m 2 CM dilated and 50% effaced, and doctor seems confident I’m going to go around Halloween. I sure hope so!

Looking forward to: Having this baby! And getting over the cold I have. You can’t take much when preggers, so I took the day off work and slept most of it, and am just taking it easy. Also looking forward to starting maternity leave after 10/27, and hopefully having a few days to get some last minute details in order before the babeh arrives.

I like to call this photo “Holly’s realization that she will soon no longer be the center of the universe.” 😉

And one of my little Holls just cuz she’s so darn cute.

Baby #2 Bumpdate: 27 Weeks!

How far along? 27 weeks
Baby’s Size: A bunch of bananas
Weight Gain: 21 pounds. Whoopsies! I’m hungry all day long and even though I’m eating plenty of veggies, baby demands treats.
Maternity clothes? All day every day! I had to wear my event uniform for work last week and I kept having to pull the shirt over my belly as my panel on my pants kept showing! In fact, I just ordered a bunch more maternity shorts and tank tops, because it’s hot hot hot here in Santa Clarita.
Best moment this week:  I had a blast working at the 3-Day in Michigan, and got to see all my coworkers, whom I consider friends. I felt really good all weekend other than tired, and am so excited for our 2017 season to be kicking off – and kicking cancer’s ass! I also did my glucose test and DO NOT have gestational diabetes, which is awesome.

Miss anything? 

  • Lambic or sour beer.
  • Pants with buttons or zippers
  • Eating prosciutto, salami, or lunch meat with careless abandon (it has to be nitratre free and all that jazz.)
  • Not waddling like a stuffed turkey 
  • Not feeling exhausted and having to go to bed at 9:30 pm
  • Not having heartburn

Movement: This kid rocks and rolls all day long! She especially is active between 6 and 10 pm.
Food cravings:  Strawberries, soft pretzels, cheese, and milk.
Anything making you queasy or sick: I started feeling barfy again about week 24, so I’m back on the nausea meds, which is keeping everything at bay. Walking by the fish case at the grocery store had me feeling green for a couple minutes.
Gender:  Girl!

In heaven in the freezing air conditioned produce room at Costco

Labor signs: Nope, but had my first Braxton Hicks (practice) contraction last week! Ouch!
Symptoms: Increased appetite, waddling, general achiness and stiffness, exhaustion. Oh and prego brain. I’m a space cadet!
Happy or moody most of the time: Happy! I’ve been really even-keeled in terms of emotions and am so much more relaxed this pregnancy, because I know what to expect.
Looking forward to: Sleep, an upcoming 3 day weekend, celebrating my 7th wedding anniversary with Matt, and getting some time to pull weeds in my backyard. It’s the small things! Also, we got Holly a toddler bed and will be getting started on this baby’s nursery, which we kinda need to do given I’m about 12-14 weeks out from the big day. Time is just flying by! We’re also going to have a small Baby-q/House-warming/Matt birthday party, so we started thinking about a date for that and working on a small registry at people’s request, which is fun.

 

Four things Friday

So, I’m cheating because it’s actually the last hour of Thursday night, but chances are you will be reading this Friday morning, hence my four things Friday title. You know, a brilliant webby friend of mine once said I need to stop using cute catchy subjects and instead do SEO-rich titles. He is right and I agree with him usually but sometimes, you write something just because you want to and your SEO rank at that moment doesn’t matter. Like right now! But anyways, here’s four things on my mind:

1) #DescribeYourselfInThreeFictionalCharacters
I like silly memes, because that’s a large part of what the Internet is great for: cats sitting on Roombas and double rainbows. So when this challenge popped up, of course I had to contribute. Here’s me, in 3 fictional characters.
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2. One of the things that I suffered from during pregnancy was major prego brain — and the little brain storage vault it affected most were my passwords to online accounts. I typically keep a spreadsheet on my computer, but now that I’m back and forth between laptop and cell phone and iPad so much, I decided I needed something handwritten. Enter this handy, inexpensive, and cute little solution: the password journal! Thank you, wonderful password journal maker, for helping a gal out. (And yes, that’s an affiliate link, so blah blah the usual gist about how I’ll make 1c if someone buys it.)

3. I’m still working out with a personal trainer and I have ALL THE SORENESS. Especially in my quads. Squat goals, am I right? Anyways, do you guys know the miracle of epsom salts? Cheap, fun to pour into the bath tub, and really helps soothe your aches and ailments. This is 31: extra creaky. Get you some.

4. I’m walking in the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention “Out of the Darkness” Walk in Santa Monica on October 15. If you’re local, I would love to have you join me on the walk. Please also consider making a small donation (Even $5 is put towards life-saving treatment.) Let’s end the stigma: more now than ever, people need our open arms so that we can tackle this public health problem head-on.

5. BONUS! It was only supposed to be four things, and you get FIVE! Poor Harambe – but oh, Internet, how you just keep going with the jokes. By the way, my patronus is an otter. What’s yours?

Happy Friday, friends! Watch this space and the Double Chin Diary soon for a feature about PCOS (it’s PCOS awareness month!) and a yummy new recipe featuring Sambazon, Bob’s Red Mill, and Pic’s Peanut Butter.

 

Alyssa’s 5 New Mom Must Haves For First Weeks With Baby

LaLaLyssa_Baby

Photo by LynnetteJoyPhotography.com

Having a baby is super fun, because not only are you obviously excited about the joy of having your little one earthside, you get to stroll the aisles of stores with impossibly itty bitty versions of human clothes, like little socks that make you turn into a giggling, cooing, baby-like version of yourself. We were incredibly blessed to have several baby showers, and we received TONS of stuff that has made our arrival into parenthood just a bit easier. However! As massive life changes are, you can never be 100% prepared, and we found our Amazon account burgeoning with frantic middle of the night purchases (thank you, same day shipping.) As I have several friends due to deliver in the next few months, I wanted to share some things that got us through the first few weeks and are still going strong after month one. This could be helpful as well if you’re picking out baby shower gifts, etc. In full disclosure these are affiliate links, so if you happen to click or buy something, I’ll make a few pennies and go buy myself a Porsche. Or not. 😉

  1.  The Breast Friend Nursing Pillow

Breastfeeding has been tough. I naively didn’t do much research on the subject, assuming once baby arrived she’d open her mouth and milk would flow freely. Not so much, especially when you have a few hormonal disorders that make milk production challenging. This pillow was recommended to me by my friend who’s also a new mom, and it is WORTH EVERY PENNY. It clips around your waist, essentially providing a table top for baby to rest on that’s perfectly aligned with your chestal region. We even use it when bottle-feeding, and Dad likes to use it too. It comes in all kinds of cute colors and designs and has a machine washable cover because babies and boobies are messy.

2. Motherlove More Milk Special Blend

As I mentioned, my PCOS and thyroid conditions mean the dairy fairy isn’t visiting as often as I would like. I am meeting regularly with a lactation consultant, and she started me on this herbal blend to help make more milk. It works! It tastes yucky, so dilute it with a shot glass of cranberry juice (fun to shoot in front of unsuspecting visitors who look on horrified, wondering if new motherhood really IS going as well as you say), or you can order the pill version. There’s all kinds of things you can try to help you make more milk like Mother’s Milk Tea or Lactation Cookies, but this stuff does a pretty good job and is quick n’ easy.

3. Aden and Anais Muslin Swaddle Blankets

Before I was initiated into the cult of motherhood, I scoffed at the price tag on these. Sure, I thought, they’re soft and trendy and have cute prints, but what’s the big deal? Well, here’s the big deal. They honestly get softer with every wash, and once you’ve mastered the art of the swaddle, you’ll learn that it’s an ancient magical technique that turns your wriggling, screaming baby into a marshmallow of soft contentedness. We have eight of these and they’re in constant rotation of use in our house, as the material stretches enough to not squeeze baby like a boa constrictor, but it keeps them wrapped up like cooing little mummies. LOVE them – 1,400 awesome Amazon reviews don’t lie.

4) Bath Sponge

We had several bathing contraptions for the bambina, ranging from a fancy sling with multiple upright positions to a miniature bath tub, to a spongy ring with a built in pillow and straps. Well, every single one of those has been ixnayed in favor of a plain old sponge, baby sized. For a mere $7, you can stick this thing in the sink or bring it into the bath tub with you and baby. It’s just cushy enough to hold up their little bums, but light enough for you to float them gently down the river of your bathtub in your hands like a raft.  You can get these at any baby store (ours is actually whale shaped and was $6 from Buy Buy Baby). I’m sure we’ll use the fancy bathing contraptions when she’s bigger, but for now, the sponge is the way to go.

5) Gowns

I have learned in the short month I’ve been a parent that onesies with snaps are the devil when it’s 3:00 a.m. and you’re trying to dress a screaming baby. It’s all about zippers down one leg, or even better, the baby gown. We had two of these on hand and in the first week of Holly’s life, ordered four more. These are super easy to put baby in, and to just pull up to change diapers. They also have the rollover cuff so if you have a baby scissorhands, they can’t scratch their darling little face (we have a baby scissorhands.) Worth it. Get a few! Also, who doesn’t look darling in a miniature night gown?

So that’s that! Honorable mentions go to Gas Drops and Gripe Water for fussiness, the Munchkin Latch bottle (doesn’t leak nearly as much as others and helps our girl switch easily between bottle and breast),  connecting rings for baby hands to grasp, the Baby Bjorn WE Carrier (she’s in it and nuzzled against me as I type!), and the Simple Wishes L-Plus Hands Free Pumping Bra.

Looking for other recommendations and insight? These two bloggers helped me out a lot on my pregnancy journey: KJPugs and What I Run Into. Every baby and parent is different, but I hope this helps some of you out as my fellow bloggers helped me!

Till next time — got any must haves to share with me? Let me know in the comments!

 

She’s here! A bundle of joy

Hello everyone!

I am back and overjoyed to announce the arrival of our daughter Holly on 11/9/15 at 11:45 p.m. Holly weighed 7 pounds, 5 ounces and was 19.5 inches tall. It was a long 17-hour labor but there were no complications and both Holly, me, and her daddy are happy and healthy!

40weeks

I plan to take it easy on the blogging front for my maternity leave through January but I may pop in here and there with some random ideas (for instance, some of my friends have requested a top 5 things you need in the first few weeks with baby. That sounds fun!).

I hope you all have a holly jolly holiday season <3

 

 

Week 35 Bumpdate

It’s almost tiiiiiime! I have less than 4 weeks to go! (Assuming baby girl is on time, because come Nov. 13 she will receive a legally binding eviction notice!)

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How far along? 35 + 3
Baby’s Size: A large lop-earred rabbit or large bunch of carrots from leafy stems to carrot bottom.
Weight Gain: I appear to be one of those people who doesn’t gain, doesn’t gain, doesn’t gain… and then BOOM! Weight gain! I’m going between 12-18 pounds gained at this point depending on time of day and how much I’ve been eating. Baby girl now packs on at least 1/2 pound per week. While the weight gain freaks me out, my OB has assured me it’s normal and she’s not concerned.
Maternity clothes? The only thing I can wear!
Best moment this week: I am now doing twice weekly non-stress tests as a precaution because I have what’s called white coat hypertension – when my blood pressure gets taken at the doctor, it’s always high. Even just 15-20 mins later it usually comes down substantially. However, because of my weight, PCOS, and the fact that I’m having low blood pressure episodes, I’m a higher risk for developing pre-eclampsia. Twice a week I go to Labor and Delivery to have babe’s heart rate and activity monitored and my BP. The first NST, I was a  nervous wreck and my BP’s were predictably high. The second one on Thursday was awesome, because not only did my little girl prove her strength by kicking the monitor off my belly, but my blood pressures were picture perfect. That made me feel a lot more confident about hopefully making it through the remaining weeks of gestation a-okay. It’s also neat to talk to all the L&D nurses and get to know them, knowing that several of them will be helping bring baby girl into the world in just a few short weeks.

Feeling happy at Labor and Delivery with excellent blood pressures and a wiggly baby

Feeling happy at Labor and Delivery with excellent blood pressures and a wiggly baby

Honorary mention to another best moment being my first chiropractic adjustment. I’ve been having pretty intense pelvic girdle pain (in your last few weeks of pregnancy, hormones loosen the joints of pelvis, hips, and groin), and a visit with a highly recommended on Yelp doc meant after several pops and cracks later, my pelvis, which had popped completely out of alignment (yuck), was back in, and I could walk like a 30-year-old instead of a 90-year-old. I go back this week and am so grateful there’s relief, because not being able to walk definitely sucks. Add it to the list of things pregnancy makes me grateful for: mobility.

Another honorary mention goes to a brunch my local coworkers took me to on Friday. I work with really incredible people, and it was so sweet of them to get together and shower me and baby girl with a little love. Since we all work remote we don’t get to see each other often, so when we do it’s always lots of fun catching up. With some other coworkers, they all pitched in on a giftcard which will be hugely helpful for us in the coming weeks. I was so lucky to be showered with so much love all around this pregnancy! Our baby girl has pretty much everything she needs, and we’re so grateful for that.

Miss anything?

  • Sleeping on my stomach. I’m not going to take this bullet point off  this list ever.
  • Still going outside. The past few days have been record breaking heat for Southern California and yesterday clocked in at 104 degrees where I live. I’m not asking for much, weather gods, I just want to be able to take a walk without feeling like an egg melting on a Hibachi. We’re still expecting mid-90s to high 80s by the end of the week. I signed up for a Fall baby, not a hellacious heat Summer baby. Next pregnancy I’m moving to Antarctica.
  • Exercise. I can’t ride my Pedego anymore because of the pelvic joint pain (bummer), and the heat. I am looking forward to walking outside with the baby and once I’m cleared by doc, getting back into shape.

Movement: Some days she’s wild, some days she’s lazy.
Food cravings:  Grapes continue to be a thing, and this week, I craved vegetable tempura, street tacos, and apples. I want to eat all the things all the time! I also craved split pea soup which I made in the crockpot, and then I made Knedlicky and Zeli, which is a Czech dish of saurkraut, potatoes, dumplings, and pork. Deeeeeelish!
Anything making you queasy or sick: No. It is glorious!
Gender:  Girl!
Labor signs: Nope.
Symptoms: Pelvic girdle pain, back pain, the waddle, and being hot. I’m actually sleeping pretty darn good.
Happy or moody most of the time: Happy. I am feeling so much better than I did in my second trimester (again – weird….) And while the physical aches of the third tri are rough, I’m so excited to meet baby! However, I am getting sick of people’s comments about my size (I’m either “huge and ready to pop”, or “too small” for 9 months pregnant.) I don’t think it’s fair that at a time when a woman’s body is clearly changing drastically, it gives people a free pass to comment with all of their observations. Hint: Telling a woman she looks huge is NEVER a compliment.
Looking forward to: Cooler weather, seeing my parents this weekend and hopefully doing maternity portraits (if it’s cool enough), continuing to check off the days until she’s here, and finishing our nursery. We’ve gotten so much done and now it’s the fun phase of decorative accents, which I love doing. I’ve been trolling TJ Maxx for treasures and hope to share photos in the next week or so.

32 Week Baby Bump Date

32 weeks?! What? Who? How? That’s kind of how I’ve been feeling lately, except I feel VERY pregnant. Like, no joke. Like, I’ve been pregnant forever. I was cooking dinner tonight and I snuck a sip of Matt’s wine and I swear the sky opened up and the angels sang… and then the pregnancy gods decided to punish me, because I went for another little sip and it went down the wrong pipe, and I spent the next ten minutes sputtering as I sheepishly continued to dice zucchini. No wine for you, prego.

I’ve been quiet on blogs and social media because #tired. And, as most of you know, I work in social media and while I absolutely adore what I do, honestly, sometimes my eyes just want a break from screen time in the evenings and weekends. But, I have lots to tell you, so let the 32 week bump date commence!

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How far along? 32 +5 which means I’m just two days away from 33 weeks. Hot diggity.
Baby’s Size: A naked tailed armadillo, Florida pomelo, or head of lettuce, depending on which app you go by. Pretty sure none of those things are the same size… so baby is about four pounds and 19 inches.
Weight Gain: Well, it finally caught up with me. At my last appointment I had put on 6 pounds and got a bit of the eyebrow raise from my OB. However, I’ve been cleaning up my act the past few weeks and am thrilled to be able to eat again without vomiting, so I’ll take it. That’s 6 pounds at 32 weeks. I’ll take it!
Maternity clothes? All day every day. If it doesn’t have stretch to it, it’s not anywhere on me.
Best moment this week: We’re in full on nesting mode after having baby showers, and I am continually humbled and grateful for how freakin’ generous our friends and family are. We have so. much. stuff. and it’s overflowing in our humble abode. This weekend we’re hoping to finally set up our crib and baby dresser, and once that’s up, it’s time for the fun stuff (DECOR!). One of my friends also gave birth last week , and a fellow blogger friend also had her baby (Welcome to the world, sweet William and Delaney!).

Miss anything?

  • Sleeping on my stomach. I’m not going to take this bullet point off  this list ever.
  • Being able to get up or flop on the couch with abandon. When you have a massive, bulbous abdomen, you totally move slower, more deliberately, and more painfully.
  • Wine. Salami. The ability to pop an Excedrin (or two) when you have a wicked headache. Pants with buttons. Uninterrupted sleep. Getting out of the bathtub without feeling like I need a complex system of levers and pulleys to hoist me out.
  • Going outside. It’s consistently been in the hundreds here and my OB asked me to stay indoors because of my blood pressure (more about that in next bullet).
  • Not worrying about baby’s health as much. My blood pressure is a weird devil, and I’ve been having low blood pressure episodes which make me dizzy. In the past I’ve had high blood pressure, but never needed medication or anything like that. Well, my OB decided at my last appointment because of my track record this pregnancy (even though my blood pressure was great!) that she wanted me to do twice-weekly non-stress tests at 34 weeks. Regardless of them being called “non-stress tests”, of course I stressed out, thinking “WHYYYYYYY? WHAT DOES IT MEAN?!”. It means my OB is conservative, as she said, and it’s just two more chances each week to make sure mommy and baby are healthy. But man. Pregnancy. All the feels.

Movement: This girl is hilarious and definitely knows when the kitty is lying on me or when live music is playing. We captured a video of the little lady moving her leg to Matt playing the guitar and I thought it was sooo cool. I mean.. that’s a frickin baby leg, in my belly. Crazy!
Food cravings:  Grapes, as usual, milk, as usual, and tonight I had to have a homemade veggie primavera pasta.
Anything making you queasy or sick: This week the smell of black beans made me feel gaggy, and then walking by the fish section in the market (as usual) turned my stomach. But! I have not thrown up in over two weeks… great success in my book!
Gender:  Girl!
Labor signs: Uh, I hope none, though some of the lower back pain and achiness this week makes me paranoid.
Symptoms: Less nausea (praise God or Allah or Flying Spaghetti Monster), lower back pain, cramping, wanting to eat ALL THE THINGS, hot all the time.
Happy or moody most of the time: Other than being a cranky crabby patty because I feel icky, mostly happy. Getting so excited to meet the little lady. I was in Sears the other day and got ridiculously excited thinking about taking her shopping!
Looking forward to: Finalizing our day care plans for February (you have to do it crazy early here), finalizing our pediatrician (another thing you have to do before birth!), getting the nursery set up and washing and putting away adorable baby clothes like the onesie below, celebrating hubby’s birthday.

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So that’s it, everyone! Hope life has been treating you well 🙂