Tuesday, October 26, 2010
I love Fall, and fall clothes. I was super excited to have the time to actually think about what I was going to wear seeing I've been living in my maternity leggings and jeans. But lo and behold nothing really fit. Ok I wasn't expecting jeans to fit, but I thought for sure my pre-pregnancy jeggings or fitted shirts would. Um no. I had no clue my thighs increased in size so much since the jeggings refused to go beyond that area. And who knew my boobs had grown so much - none of the fitted shirts I tried fitted right. Wow a real wake up call.
I want to preface this by saying the process of pregnancy and giving birth gave me a whole new appreciation for just what my body is capable of. Like most women, I've had a love-hate relationship with my weight most of my life, but I was at an all time low with the toll PCOS/infertility took on it and the sense of feeling like my body was failing me. So I'm going to keep my goals realistic and in no way allow it to become obsessive. That being said I'd still like to return to a healthier weight for myself.
Yesterday marked 6 weeks since Birdie's birth and I have to admit I've been eating like crap. I've had little time to think about what I eat, and though I'm not eating a whole lot I'm surely getting extra calories from the cookies, bagels and donuts that have become too regular for comfort. It's not good for my insulin resistance and it surely can't be good for her either.
I want to commit to being a little more mindful of my eating habits. Now with 6 weeks behind us, motherhood isn't as overwhelming as it was, so I should be able to carve out some time for myself to plan meals in advance and to head to the gym.
Today keeping this in mind I handed Birdie over to husband when he got home (with a bottle of pumped milk in the fridge if needed) and headed downstairs to the gym. I have absolutely no excuse seeing I have a full fledged gym in my apartment building.
I'm starting slowly: 30 minutes on the treadmill. At a pace that actually got me sweating a little. And you know what? It felt really good. I am thinking of doing one of those from couch to 5k training things- it'll keep me movitated and challenge me.
I read that losing 1.5lbs/wk while breast feeding is totally ok. So this will be my goal for the 2olbs I'd like to lose. I'll let you know how it goes. Slow and steady wins the race!
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Monday, October 11, 2010
I had wanted to hold out on pumping until atleast 3 weeks to give my milk a chance to come in and establish a nursing bond with my daughter without bringing in the pump. Last week I finally brought out my Medela InStyle Advanced (two boobs at once!) and excitedly tried pumping.
Test 1: My excitement quickly turned to dissapointment- I wasn't expecting a full bottle, but I was definitely thinking it'd be more than .75 ounces (combined from both breasts, for a 15 minute pump session)?! Especially since I've been soaking my breast pads, and Birdie had seemed to be perfectly nursing at each session. Not to mention, she awoke early from her nap and wanted to nurse 20 minutes after I'd pumped and I don't think she got enough milk despite nursing longer than usual, leaving me one cranky baby. I'd read that babies were much better at getting milk out of the breast and pumping 30 mins before feeding still left enough milk for the baby? I guess not.
Test 2: I did some reading of tips online and tried pumping after she'd nursed, to build my supply and encourage more milk production. Day 2 results: after 3 day time sessions (for abt 10 minutes each time), I had about 2 ounces total and Birdie wasn't cranky since she'd already fed.
Test 3: My baby girl sleeps 6-7 hours straight night time, so I thought I'd pump 3 hours after she'd fallen asleep, thinking this would be 3 hours before she awoke and my breasts are usually heavy and painful when I finally nurse her. A 15 minute session got me 2 ounces of milk which was exciting, but for some reason baby girl awoke an hour after I'd pumped, and from my observation I don't think she got enough milk. I ended up feeding her 1 ounce (of the 2 I'd just pumped) after she'd nursed on both breasts. It was only after this that our crying baby fell back asleep.
I now have about a 4 ounce bottle sitting in the fridge, which seems enough for one short outing. So I haven't done any pumping today. Which I know isn't a good idea in terms of encouraging milk production, but I feel guilty since I seem to be not feeding my baby enough by trying to pump simultaneously?
Birdie had her 4 week appointment today and she's gained the right amount of weight (1 pound in two weeks) so she's obviously getting enough nutrition and I'm producing enough milk. But any tips for how I simultaneously nurse her and try storing some away?
What's worked for you ladies to get more milk? When to pump? For how long?
My Medela has an automatic "let down" function every few minutes it seems. And I've been pumping at the 5 of 7 levels, which is as high as i can tolerate without it being overly painful. Already drinking tons of water, eating oatmeal daily, and eating a healthy diet.
Thursday, October 7, 2010
- white noise: husband discovered that Birdie loved the sound of the faucet on when she was having one of her crying fits. Since then I've downloaded the white noise app on my iPhone and she falls asleep well to the sound of waves or rain fall. It's been a life saver
- sleeping on her tummy: I know this one is controversial but we realised that the reason our little one may be so fussy day time is that she wasn't napping at all. She'd fall asleep nursing and would sleep on my lap but as soon as I put her down in her crib, she'd be awake a few minutes later. Now I let her sleep on my lap for longer until she's in deep sleep, and for one afternoon nap I transfer her to my bed and lay her on her belly. I get a book and sit on the bed next to her and keep a close eye on her. She sleeps really well this way and gets in atleast one afternoon 2 hour nap. She's been a whole lot unfussier as a result. My mom said when we were babies, we usually slept on our bellies and that it really helps a baby with intestinal issues/gas etc. Whatever it is- it works!
- Burping: I'd try burping her and sometimes she's let one out, but often times after a minute or two I'd give up. Now I make sure to get a good burp out of her after each feeding. New positions have helped: for Birdie, bouncing her in my lap for a few seconds and then cupping her chin and leaning her over slightly seem to work usually. The position I was taught with her resting on my shoulder, tapping her back rarely worked for us.
- Not over stimulating her: it goes against instinct. Usually when she's fussy, we'd try everything under the roof to see if it'd work, and in doing that overstimulate her even more it seems. Now we try to keep things as calm as possible and maybe try one or two things at most, and she calms down easier
- Evening massage time: I use warm organic extra virgin olive oil and give my little one a gentle massage. Back home, babies get massages twice a day and it is said to help with everything from circulation to easing their growing pains and aid in relaxing them. We've started giving Birdie a massage each evening to establish some resemblance of a routine- I'll nurse her around 9pm, we'll do a massage, diaper change, pajamas, and then one more feeding before rocking her to sleep around 11pm. She sleeps really well after this.
These are small tricks that have worked for us. It's interesting how each baby is so different- after a few fussy evenings, we offered her a pacifier and she wouldn't take it (tried Avent, Nuk, Soothie..). She also doesn't like the Swing that so many blog parents have raved about.
My breast pump arrived today so I'm beyond excited to try that out and hopefully become more mobile as a result. Last weekend, husband and I ventured a little further from home than we had with Birdie and went to do some cold weather clothing shopping for her. She was behaving fine, so we even bought some coffee and falafel sandwiches to enjoy in the park. I used my nursing cape to feed her in public (a first! and it wasn't so bad other than my aching arms...). I was glad to see I was fine doing this, but I still think pumping will be easier in NY. Especially now as it gets chillier.
So that's our update. My little one has been sleeping 6-8 hours straight most nights (we checked with her dr and she said up to 8 hours was fine and not to wake her up to feed her!!) which has been amazing. Granted I'm still getting up every hour or two to check on her, but it's still amazing. She is usually famished when she does wake up and I think we make up for it day time by having lots and lots of nursing time.
In short that is how we're doing- I've never been more tired, and at times I miss mini-aspects of my pre-baby life (dying to go Fall shopping!!) but each and every day with Birdie is so much fun and I'm loving motherhood. Especially as we learn more about our babe and how to keep her calm and happy :)
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
We haven't had too many visitors, still getting used to our new family unit, and Birdie's unpredictable schedule.. But the other day, my good friend H who had a baby 2 months ago stopped by with her little man. I'd seen him when he was two weeks old, and it blew both me and my friend away how huge he looked in comparision to Birdie (who looked teeny tiny at 7.3 lbs). As gorgeous as he looked and as envious as I was of his playfullness, it hit me just how she won't be by tiny newborn for very much longer (sniff).
...Thanks ladies for inquiring how we're doing. I am doing fine- first two weeks I had the typical soreness and tiredness but I think all things considered, I did pretty well in terms of recovery. I was definitely overwhelmed and may just now be getting out of the "dazed" phase but I feel good physically. The big thing for me is sleep, and (knock on wood) Birdie's been sleeping a good 5-6 hour stretch every night for the past ten days. I've gotten better at falling asleep when she does. Once she wakes, I change her diaper, nurse her, and on good days she goes right back to sleep for another 3 hours, and on not so good days, I'll have to rock her and she'll fall back asleep after an hour or so. Still, I consider myself incredibly blessed to be getting 6-7 hours of sleep a night with a newborn! Armed with some sleep, I find myself far better able to deal with the day to day crazyness of life with a newborn.
So how is Birdie doing... First few days, she was fine. Then my milk came in (I seem to be a milk producing machine) and she gained the weight she had lost after birth. Her poo became the yellow mucuousy dream poo they tell you to look out for, she was napping day time, and sleeping night time. And then bam all of a sudden around day 10 she's become fussy. I think our poor girl is having reflux issues, so after talking to the nurse at the Pediatrician's, I've started feeding her on a slight incline, keeping her upright 5-10 minutes after feeding and placing her head on a soft baby pillow. It seems to have helped, and some days she's an absolute angel, and others, she won't nap and tires herself out. Yesterday for ex (my second day home alone), from 7am-5pm we basically did this routine: diaper change, feed, she falls asleep at my nipple after 10 minutes, I rock her and when I transfer her to her crib, she awakens almost immediately, and starts wailing. The only thing that comforts her is to be fed more... Everyone and their mother tells you to get them to feed longer, but it's easier said then done.
While pregnant, I had this image that we'd go on walks and I'd still be out and about with my newborn, but with her constant feeding (and my not being very comfortable with feeding in public), and my seemingly thin skin when she cries, means we've been staying home mostly. In the evenings, we'll take her for a stroll in her pram, but I only seem to be able to do that if husband is with me. I am trying to hold out until she's three weeks old to pump and am hoping after that we'll be much more mobile. I even gave in and offered her a pacifier the other day after hours of wanting to suckle, and she wouldn't take it. It was the Avent Silicone newborn one. I'm thinking maybe I'll try another brand for when she's super fussy.
I don't mean to make it all sound bad. This morning, Birdie and I danced around to Beyonce for a good twenty minutes. Each and every time I look at her sweet face, it still takes my breath away. I greet her with a kiss each and every time she awakens wanting to be fed, because I am in still in awe this little being is ours. Diaper change isn't as gross as they make it out to be (I even enjoy our little diaper change song :). And when your little one smiles (even if it may not be a real smile) the way your heart melts is unlike anything else...But I also want to be truthful about how hard motherhood has been. If she doesn't cry, I have endless patience and could probably rock her 24 hours a day if need be. But something changes within me when she cries and I can't soothe her, I seem to loose it :(
So a few questions for you new mothers:
when did you start leaving the house regularly with your newborn?
any tips for soothing a fussy baby?
what do you do when your baby wails in public?
I also just want to say that with all the time I spend nursing, I'm glued to my iPhone and read all your blog posts... just haven't figured out how to comment using the iPhone Blogger app. So even if I've been silent on here, I've been lurking on your blogs :)
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Saturday, September 11, 2010
I went in Thursday for a sono and little girl is snug as a bug and happy in the womb. Too happy it seems. Amniotic fluid levels were good too. And I still feel movement all day long.
She checked me and I was finally 1 cm dilated. Woohoo. I also requested she strip my mebranes and she did. I asked about castor oil and seeing I was dilated, she said it was worth trying since I'm hoping to avoid being induced.
Long story short, I took 3 tblsp of castor oil that night, and spent a few hours in the loo and then had 5 hours of intense contractions. Even called the OB at 5am, when the contractions were 5 mins apart. She said we could either go into the hospital or labor a little longer at home. We decided on the latter, and spent the time showering, getting the hospital bag ready etc. Lo and behold, two hours later, contractions started getting farther apart and eventually dissapearing. The OB called to check in and when I told her what had happened, she said it must be early stage labor and could last days.
Which it has. All of yesterday, last night and today I've had cramping and contractions (ranging randomly 10-30 minutes apart). I cannot say how frustrating and annoying this is. Not to mention painful. Add to this that I seem to have to go to the loo after everything I eat, resulting in painful hemarroids. I guess it's not punishment enough to have pain in your belly and back... pain in the ass has to be added to the equation.
My induction was to be scheduled for tomorrow, but the hospital was fully booked, so now I have been told to show up Monday night. On the one hand, it gives me one more day to hope baby girl makes her appearance naturally. But on the other hand, I'm just tired of this.
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
We did the NST- baby girl is apparently moving alot per usual in there and has a great heartbeat.
The OB checked me and.... still NOT DILATED at all!!! She seemed surprised. I even more so.
Really? I'm practically 41 weeks. How is that even possible?
I go back in Thursday for a sonogram.
And then if baby girl is still not here come Sunday, they will induce.
I am hoping to avoid that... though seeing how my body seems to be making no progress, it is a real possibility.
I asked the OB about castor oil today, and she said it doesn't harm, but she doesn't think it'd help either. That if I don't mind bouts of diahrrhea to give it a try... Has anyone tried drinking castor oil to bring on contractions?
Monday, September 6, 2010
I still have no real "signs". Have been cramping on and off, especially night time. Get really strong BH, especially when I go for my twice a day walks. TMI, but I've been going number 2 after every single meal (which I read somewhere is a sign?). But I've had all of these things for almost two weeks now, with no change.
I've been trying many forms of natural labor induction- nothing's worked:
I ate one whole pinapple- no result
I've been walking 3 miles daily- no result
Nipple simulation- no result
Love making- no result
Eating spicy food on a daily basis- no result
It's probably because I don't see any progression, I continue to feel really discouraged :( I haven't tried Castor Oil yet, but if the OB tells me I'm dilated at my next appt, I just may.
The Dr's was closed today, but I'm calling them first thing tomorrow to see if they'll fit me in tomorrow. I don't want to wait until Wednesday and I'm nervous that they haven't seen me since last Monday.
Thanks ladies for answering my Q in my last post. New Q for you: how exactly did BH feel different from real contractions? Usually BH for me lasts minutes at a time. I still don't get how long the real contractions last- is it just a sharp pain and tightening for a few seconds? And you time until the next one? Was it always accompanied by back ache? Having a hard time telling if I'm still only having much stronger BH or if these are contractions... ?
Thursday, September 2, 2010
If it wasn't already obvious- she isn't here yet.
I had another OB appointment Monday (last week's was just last Friday)- no progress. No dilation. No nothing. To make matters even more annoying, the OB's office is moving this week so they were closed all of the week and saw me Monday as a result. My next appointment is not until next Wednesday, at which point I'll be 41 weeks.
Sensing my dissapointment perhaps (?), the OB was telling me about the impending storm (Earl I guess) and how the L&D ward was quiet last week and the Dr's and nurses were joking about the calm before the storm and expecting a lot of births this week. Something about barometric pressure leading to labor... I don't know. I had my hopes up with the full moon theory, so I know better than to put too much stock into this one.. But I still am hoping... Let's see.
I'm still feeling pretty bummed out. But I have to say one sleepless night I started looking on my archives on this blog and came across the post I'd made Aug 2009, titled "hearbreak" where I was at my lowest point and questioned whether I had it in me to continue the IF battle. Reading that brought tears to my eyes, and made me say aloud "I have no right to complain". How far we've come in a year's time. But maybe it's because of how long we were TTC, plus the 9 months of pregnancy and waiting, but I feel like we've been waiting for this little one for years now. If I ever come across as ungrateful on this blog, please know I count my blessings daily. We're just a little impatient to meet our little miracle.
Saturday, August 28, 2010
Sleep: I had two whole weeks of sleeplessness. Nothing worked. Not even Tylenol PM, which for me always had. I tossed and I turned. I tried sleeping sitting up. Nothing. The first week was terribly difficult since I was trying to finish everything at work. I started maternity leave this Monday and was hoping I'd atleast get to sneak in naps... even that never happened. You reach this state of constant tiredness but sleep eludes you... Cannot tell you how frustrating that is. I don't even want to type this in case I jinx myself, but last night I slept a good 8 hours, even managing to fall back asleep after 2 pee breaks. And even got in a 2 hour nap this afternoon. Let's hope that lasts!!
Movement: constant. I can tell she's napping in longer spurts, but once she's awake and especially after I eat, she's a bundle of energy kicking and dancing. And she's big enough that it is actually painful these days if she moves in quick movements or delivers her signature kicks... People can see my belly shake from the outside. I do cherish these moments though, as I realise she has to come out at some point (though she seems to have no intention to)...
Best moment this week: my mom is here and having her feel my belly was pretty special. Although we'd already bought most things, I'd purposefully left a few things unpurchased so that my mom could feel part of the experience. She really enjoyed picking out the coming home from hospital outfit.
Food cravings: not really cravings, but as of this week I seem to have my appetite back in full force. Baby girl's definitely dropped and the heart burn has eased and I'm eating a lot more.
What I miss: nothing really at this point. Though we have a big bottle of my favorite champagne ready for the hospital, and I know I'll enjoy that.
How I'm doing: frustrated I have to say. Time lately has been going at a snail's pace. I'd somehow convinced myself she'd come early... and was thinking maybe I'd be lucky with the full moon on the 24th... which passed w/no baby. And then husband and I had been thinking maybe today the 28th. Not sure why but from the very start of my pregnancy, whenever anyone asked, I'd keep telling people my due date was the 28th... it'd just slip out as if it was some sign. Today passes with no baby... I had a doctor's appointment yesterday, and the OB said I hadn't made much progress from last week. My cervix is lowered and riper (I guess that is the term- ie softened) but still no dilation. I think she sensed my dissapointment so she tried saying how some women progress into full labor over night... but I couldn't help feel blue all of yesterday. I'm just ready for her to be here. It doesn't help to constantly have people calling and texting asking if she's here yet. I know they mean well, but it's yet another reminder that she'd not... :(
BUT we're taking advantage of this time to enjoy the end of NY summer fully. The weather had been beautiful here with weather in the 80s and blue skies- we've been dining at some of our favorite restaurants, it's been great spending time with my mom (who's been marveling at my energy levels) not to mention sneaking in some late night socialising with friends. Last night we went to a friend's birthday soire at a chic rooftop bar- everyone (these are friends who have never been pregnant, and seem to have some notion that pregnant ladies are on bed-rest or something) seemed puzzled I was still out in my 39th week in heels sipping Perrier. Hey, sitting at home doesn't help.
So that is my update. Trying to make the most of these last few days (I HOPE!) but also feeling dissapointed everyday that she doesn't make an appearance.
I don't know if the ladies who've birthed recently felt any premonition or "signs" before labor? But I feel nothing. Some slight cramping.. my belly is noticeably lower... more toilet visits. But that's it. I don't know but I expected that maybe I'd feel some stronger contractions at this stage, and although I am having stronger B-H, they are still B-H...
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
It also makes me all that more impatient for our little girl to arrive. No update. She's still seemingly cozy in her home of 9 months.
I have been feeling a little stronger Braxton-Hicks the past few days, noticed some slight spotting yesterday, no sight of the mucus-plug and at last week's appointment I was still not dilated. OB said my cervix had just lowered and was riper.
Body is increasingly finding it uncomfortable to move around with this huge belly. I haven't slept a good night's sleep in weeks. Most days the heart burn makes it hard to eat. Considering all of this, I'm actually looking forward to labor.
Have you heard of the full moon story? Apparently the gravitational pull on full moon nights causes women who have due dates around the full moon's water to break. I asked my OB and she confirmed that most hospitals increase staff on full moon nights.
Tonight is a full moon. Could this be it?
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
hospital bag- mostly packed
support team- husband is ready and mom arrives from Asia Saturday
me- ready to labor
only thing not yet ready? baby girl's name.
A name is such a big thing. And how we pick and name a child is so culturally specific. Back home, children often don't have a name for a few months. They're initially called by nicknames/terms of endearment, and once the parents have gotten to know their child they'll find a name that is suitable. This to me is how a child should be named. Unfortunately, I am giving birth in the US and it will require us to have a name before I can leave the hospital.
We've shortlisted 3 names that could be possibilities. But none of the three feels completely "right". We were discussing this with my parents and I think it's because we haven't met her yet.
So here's hoping to the name clicking once baby girl makes her entrance, otherwise we may be in trouble :)
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Saturday, August 7, 2010
Speaking to the nurse at our pre-natal class, she suggested:
champagne for the fridge
laptop (they have wifi)
outfit to bring baby home in
chargers for phone/laptop
updated with suggestions from wonderful ladies in the comments:
camera (duh how did I forget!)
baby book (for foot prints)
Total weight gain: 32lbs since the start
Sleep: almost non-existant. It takes me hours of tossing and turning before I finally fall asleep around 3am. I get up around 7am to go to the bathroom and then can't fall asleep again. I've been heading to work early, and getting through the day has been really hard. I'm dead tired by the time I get home but try not to sleep that early. By the time 10pm rolls around, sleep has escaped again. It's a very strange feeling- to be so tired but not to be able to sleep. Every few days I've been taking Tylenol PM to get atleast a decent few hours of sleep so that I can continue functioning. It's getting to be increasingly impossible to focus at work and to think I still have so much to get done before my maternity leave starts in 2 weeks :(
Movement: constantly. She actually shifts from one side to the other and we can see it from the outside. She's head down, so this is her bum we see- kind of cute :) Lately when I walk I get really intense Braxton-Hicks which cause me to stop and catch my breath. Any one else get these?
Best moment this week: having pretty much everything done- crib here and installed, stroller put together, all the essentials purchased, diapers and wipes in the cabinet. Only thing I really have left to do is wash her clothes. My husband's colleague's wife was due same date as me- she gave birth 4 weeks early last week- they're both doing well thank god- but it really kicked me into gear to get everything ready. This week I'm focusing on cleaning up the closets some more to get rid of stuff and make room for baby stuff, and finishing decorating little girl's room. I suppose before 37 weeks I should also put my hospital bag together?
Food cravings: lemon popsickles and cold cold watermelon
What I miss: sleep
What I'm looking forward to next: being full term ... starting my weekly appointments.... and strangely looking forward to my first internal exam next week to see if I'm dilated/effaced at all.
Sunday, August 1, 2010
I've been following all your blogs on google reader on my iPhone but can't figure out how to comment. So in order to comment I have to log onto my laptop and remember what I wanted to say... And these days I'm LAZY :)
So... since the last post we did the hospital tour. I have been immensely impressed so far with both my hospital and the nurses. The pre-natal classes we're taking are taught by a L&D nurse from the hospital and she has such a holistic and natural approach, that it's been really comforting. (Granola as the husband calls it).
Also in the course of the class we've realised that almost every single thing on our birth plan is already done automatically so we will not need to fight for it.
the birthing rooms are really decorated in calm colors, with much of the medical equipment hidden behind you. The bed itself has a bar, a mirror and allows for squatting and other positions. The hospital encourages movement throughout labor for as long as you can. Drugs are provided on a request basis and you're encouraged to discuss beforehand with your doctor what your preferences are.
the baby will be handed over to me right after birth, as that is standard practice. They also highly encourage in-room nursing and only take the baby away if it's requested by the mother
they offer a complimentary breastfeeding class and are certified by the WHO as a breastfeeding friendly hospital.
All of this has flown in the face of what I'd read the hospital experience would be.. on some blogs as well as books like the Ina May Guide to Birth... My friend who works in hospital administration tells me that "baby friendly" certified hospitals are still a rarity in the US, and perhaps my hospital is more of an exception than the norm, but I feel lucky to be birthing in a place that is so mother-centric. It's comforting.
I had been feeling some slight anxiety about the birthing process a few weeks back but what's always helped me is arming myself with information. So while we'd been reading a ton about the baby, I hadn't really looked into the actual process of birthing. Focusing on that for the past week or two has really helped me to feel like I know what the differnent options out there are, that every l&d is unique.. and somehow that information makes me feel like I'll be fine.
Now the next subject to research is the post-delivery recovery. A friend who gave birth two weeks ago was saying the actual labor and delivery was nothing in comparision to how painful recovery has been for her.. Any days who've birthed recently want to comment.
You think you're finally ahead on all you need to know, only to find out there's so much more to learn about!!
What else... the nursery is coming together. We just have a few more items to order and then we're all ready for lady love's arrival. How I'm feeling will be the subject of another post, as sleeplessness and back aches are still plaguing me... Ah the joys!!
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Total weight gain: 32lbs since the start
Maternity clothes: haven't been able to wear any non-pregnancy purchased clothes anymore... But I have to say I've finally stopped buying any more clothes for the pregnancy. The other day I saw a pretty dress, and had to remind myself I have only a little over a month to go. Isn't it hard to see all the gorgeous regular summer stuff and not be able to buy anything? I wish I could say being pregnant has put a stop to my shopping but it really hasn't- between the new collection of flat shoes and low-heeled wedges, and empire waisted dresses, I've bought as much as I normally do any season... oi! Wasn't expecting that.
Stretch marks: no!!
Sleep: past few days has been hard. I've had a really hard time getting comfortable. And when I try changing sides, I can actually feel the weight of little one shifted in my belly. It's painful. Also have noticed I have to get up to pee more frequently all of a sudden... perhaps she's lowered herself on my bladder again?
Movement: it had been constant for a while there. Especially with all the cold water I've been drinking to combat the heat wave. But past few days I'm also noticing slightly less movement (she has less space to move the OB said) but I'm feeling more Braxton-Hicks contractions... I didn't realise that was what I was feeling because I thought I'd read somewhere B-H were accompanied with cramps? Apparently not... it's this weird sensation that usually happens when I'm walking and all of a sudden my tummy goes rock-hard and I feel this weird tightening...Fun.
Best moment this week: all of our interactions, me and baby girl. I find myself talking to her pretty often. It's hilarious to my husband but I feel like we've bonded so much recently.
Food cravings: cold things... popsicles... cold watermelon... still have the heartburn and odd return of nausea
What I miss: walking normal... not having constant back ache... a good night's sleep
What I'm looking forward to next: finishing up her nursery and getting together the many items we still have left on our to-purchase list. I want to be finished with all of this by the following weekend max, at which point I'll be 35 weeks.
I am ever hyper/bothered by small things/impatient. He is eternally calm/thinks things over/doesn't sweat the small stuff.
This is also why we're such a good pair.
Lately when I think of baby girl's personality I was really hoping she'd have more of his personality. My husband's nickname for me is "firecracker" so you can imagine why having a calm daughter may be a better idea. But lately as we've bonded, I'm more and more convinced she's a mini-me.
This happened the other night:
I was dead tired after work. I lay down on the bed with one of the heavy Steig Larsson books, it semi resting on my belly. She gave a fierce kick right to the book. I shifted it thinking I'd bothered her. She proceeded to give another kick and do her squirming dance of displeasure. I commenced to have a verbal argument with her, telling her I'd do with my belly as I pleased (trust me I was tired!). At precisely this point, husband walked into the room and asked who I was talking to. And witnessed our first (and I'm sure not last) mother-daughter fight. I showed him what was going on, and let me tell you the little one did not back down. So I had to concede defeat and read a magazine.
She is this mother's daughter.
Saturday, July 10, 2010
Earlier this week I turned 31. To celebrate husband and I both took the day off from work- quite a feat for workaholic us.
We went to our favorite brunch spot, and ordered the whole menu it seemed like. In between bits of waffles, chorizo, and fluffy as can be pancakes, we reflected on the past year for me.
A trip down memory lane... we took last July off from fertility treatments. We'd just started seeing the specialist, who had outlined a seemingly overwhelming number of tests and possible treatment plans. July was the month I was turning 30, so we decided we'd enjoy life that month. Drink.. eat... be merry. And tackle it all in August. My 30th year started with a horrid month with the HSG... SIS... and start of harsher medication and it seemed never ending visits to the doctors. September... October... November... December were much the same. Now in retrospect it was 5 months of my life, but those months were the hardest I've ever encountered, taking us both to the lowest levels of despair.
Come end of December, we found ourselves with the good news that maybe our prayers had been answered. The following 3 months were full of anxiety and constant feelings of fear of it all being taken away. It was only once April rolled around that I started relaxing and enjoying my little one. Believing our little miracle was really true.
How much changes in a year. I started 30 on such a low note, not knowing if I had the strength in me to keep hoping. And now I start 31 full of amazement of what my body is capable of... excited for the future... and believing that dreams do come true.
So we left the brunch spot, our bellies full. Deep in conversation with the person who knows me best in the world... with our little daughter kicking wildly in my belly.
You have those rare moments in life, where everything feels exactly as it should be. And this was one of those.
Sunday, July 4, 2010
Last week, husband and I celebrated 6 years of wedded happiness. Last year we did a grand trip to the Big Sur coastline to celebrate 5 years and as much as we had fun and celebrated us, we'd still both felt the nagging reminder of what was missing. This year, celebrating our anniversary was a poignant moment. Our last as solely the two of us, and we cherished that and also celebrated what was to come.
Last weekend also was my baby shower. My sister organized it and a big group of my girlfriends gathered for a fun afternoon. We played silly games, ate yummy Mediterranean tapas, and topped it off with a yummy chocolate cake with a pram on it. Fun. Lots of neccessary items for baby girl were gifted and it's sinking in... baby girl's on her way :)
We decided to spend this long weekend here in NY with few plans. Work has been absolutely insane for me with a huge deadline next week so some rest has been badly needed. Today, with termperatures threatening to hit 100F, we cancelled plans to attend a July 4th picnic, and instead had our own picnic indoors in the comfort of constant hydration, proximity to the loo and air conditioning. Not to mention, we put the crib together, emptied out alot of stuff from the guest/nursery room and it now looks closer to the room it should be. We still are waiting for the mattress/and need to do the "decor" but atleast the crib is up!
Also finally got around to reading the labor and delivery part of the baby books. So far I'd only gotten so far as following the weekly updates... Next: need to get some books on breast feeding. Any reccomendations?
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
So when I last wrote I was still loving pregnancy and enjoying Italy I see... things have slightly changed since.
The day I was to leave Italy, I had the worst back pain. Like nerve pinching pain, which made me really dread the thought of my 12+ hr journey ahead. I got to the airport in pain, not wanting to draw attention to myself which may preclude the airline from letting me fly. Lo and behold I got offered a complimentary upgrade, hallelujah. It was like my prayers were answered. The flight back was slightly more comfortable as a result.
NY since my return has been absolutely scorching. It's been in the 90s every single day with high humidity. To me it feels like I'm living in an oven. It's unbearable. Our office is freezing (for normal people) so it feels like heaven to me, but the walk to/from work has been unbearable and my apartment even with both AC and fan on, feel oppressive. Past two nights, I keep getting up in the night because of the heat. I don't know how I'll deal with this for two more months! Ready to cry right now at the thought.
The heat has affected everything- I feel swollen (even though husband doesn't think so) and am moving so so slow. I feel constantly in a bad mood due to the heat. My back has consistently been acting up and it's been painful getting through a work day.
So much for the loving being pregnant bit... or atleast I should be thankful that lasted 30 full weeks. I have the feeling the next 10 are not going to be so much fun.
So that is this cranky lady's update. :(
Hope the rest of you are faring better.
Friday, June 18, 2010
Total weight change: no clue! I have no scale here and frankly I don't want to know. I've been eating so well here-last night we were taken for a 7 course dinner, not to mention the amazing gelato and thin crust pizza and cheeses.. I'm in heaven!
Maternity clothes: my attitude remains the same, no thanks. Though I still love the $20 maternity leggings I got from Motherhood Maternity a while back- they've been one of my top two pregnancy purchases.
Stretch marks: no
Sleep: so so lately. But not because of any sleeping issues- just haven't had time. We start meetings at 8am, and go until 6pm. I have been coming to my room and getting on email/conducting work calls until 7-8pm, and then heading out to dinner or sight seeing afterwards with colleagues, and not back in my room until midnight. It's been really hectic, and though I don't feel tired, I realise I should be getting much more rest! Husband's threatened from now on I need to actually take it easy for the next 10 weeks, and I think I may agree.
Movement: little love is still hyper active. I love it! We have our secret interactions, and sometimes even in the midst of a super serious work meeting I feel her kicking and it puts a smile on my face. Lately I can really see her moving in my belly from the outside which is really really amazing. I LOVE it. If the end result of pregnancy wasn't to have my little girl in my arms, I may want to stay pregnant forever :)
Best moment this week: so many to count. My little love is a nomad like her mama I can tell. She seems to love Italy and has given me no trouble. In my 30 years, I've traveled to 30 countries and been a handful of them in Asia and Europe 5 or more times. So I love travel. I can tell my little girl has that same spirit already. I wrote an email to the husband today saying I think she wants to be born Italian.. he didn't respond ;)
Food cravings: nothing really, though I am still really enjoying food. Still having some nausea a few times a week and daily heartburn, but it's nothing a little tums doesn't help.
What I miss: nothing much. I love this much more than anything I could miss.
What I'm looking forward to next: being back in the US over the weekend and seeing my baby daddy. I miss him so much when I travel. Baby girl and I were meant to head to Geneva next for another week of meetings, but I'm heading back to NY instead (despite however well I'm doing, I realise I shouldn't be overdoing it, and travel is tiring). So that's what I'm looking forward to- reuniting our small family and seeing my husband.
ps: I was seriously worried about the glucose test and had this nagging feeling for a long time that I'd fail it given my PCOS and IR- but since the test on Monday the doctor hasn't called back yet. I'm going to call her once I'm back to make certain but she had said she'd call the next day with results if anything showed up...
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Tons of energy, no jetlag (despite the 6 hr time difference), and overall just great.
It's interesting to me how different cultures respond so differently to pregnancy. Maybe it's New York, and not the US, but you're treated as if things are just same old same old while pregnant in NY. Yes, people offer you a seat on the train/bus but other than that no fuss is made. My doctor also makes it all seem very normal, and has a very matter of fact approach. Probably because of all of this I've been functioning as I always have- working long hours, eating the same healthy food in the same amount as before, walking everywhere as I always have, seeing friends frequently etc.
But it all changed the moment I stood in line at the Air France counter at the airport on my way here. The staff pulled me to the front of the line, and changed my seat to give me one with extra leg room. They placed a "priority" tag on my luggage so I wouldn't have to wait. I'd also gotten distracted responding to emails on my iPhone, and was waiting in line to board. Several French passengers motioned that I should be boarding priority. I hadn't even thought of that. So off I marched to the front of the line. Where someone was more than eager to help me place my bag in the overhead bin... All without me asking for any of it.
Similarly, in Italy I've been treated like a princess. Every one insists you take it easy, not so much as fetch your own tea... People on the streets make way, the lunch lady insisted I take a complimentary box of milk with my lunch... People seem surprised I'm still flying, working, traveling (although my US doctor said international travel was fine until 34 weeks.. so I technically could still fly until the end of my 8th month).
Which has me feeling all the more pregnant and conscious of my being pregnant. Which I often "forget" back in the US.
I have to say I love the special treatment and the "celebration" of my being with child. As the man sitting in the airplane (who was very hiphop and the comment coming from him was all the more poignant): this is so special. Yes dear stranger on the plane, it is. I wonder if it's the low birth rates in this part of Europe that makes it so, or the non-denial of women being women... but I've found a profound difference in the way being pregnant is treated. And I have to say I love this way far more.
Friday, June 11, 2010
Total weight change: 25 lbs gained since the start
Maternity clothes: ick, no thanks. Still buying regular empire waist dresses a size larger and loving the look.
Stretch marks: no, thank goodness
Sleep: has been great lately. Last night I layed down around 9pm to read and fell asleep, sleeping a solid 10 hours!!
Movement: my little love must be hyper active. She constantly kicks, and moves. I just giggle picturing the little dances she must do in there. Lately you can sometimes see her movement from the outside- it looks like twitching. Husband loves being able to see that. She still won't kick when he has his hand on my belly though.
Best moment this week: we were playing around with the music, alternating between my musical taste and the husbands, which really is at opposite ends of the spectrum. She seemed to love his music, and not so much mine :)
Food cravings: nothing really, though I find myself pretty ravenous. I eat smaller meals to ward off the heartburn, but my eyes are definitely bigger than my stomach is these days.
What I miss: nothing much. Maybe bending over? Or easy movement. I've been carrying my round belly with pride. I might just be one of those women who LOVES being pregnant.
What I'm looking forward to next: my glucose test is Monday, and then Monday night baby girl and I fly off to Italy for a week for work. Did I tell you I lived in Italy 6 years while growing up? I haven't been back in the past 15 years, but am super excited. This also marks baby girl's third international trip in utero on 3 continents. She's a rockstar I tell you!
Sunday, June 6, 2010
I was in Washington DC all of last week for work. I had a packed schedule, requiring a lot of running around the city, hailing taxi cabs trying to make it in time for various meetings, all the while lugging my heavy purse and laptop bag. Not to mention DC was 100F the entire time I was there. Ugh.
Wednesday late morning I noticed a dark brown spot on my panties but being in the midst of busy meetings, I barely thought about it. Especially since it was a one time spot and not increasing.
Thursday early afternoon I notice another dark brown spot. While on lunch break I was on the phone with my husband and nonchalantly mentioned it. Especially since baby girl was moving and I had no accompanying cramps, I didn't think it was anything serious. Husband freaked out and insisted I was taking it too lightly. He scared me into calling the doctor's- which is a first for me. I haven't called to ask anything outside of my appointments. I spoke with the nurse who assured me if it wasn't bright red in color and if I didn't feel cramping, I was most likely ok. The "most likely" part didn't sit well with me. I asked her what to do, and she said if it continued past 5 days I should come in to have it checked out. I thought this was really flippant- if anything were wrong, even given a miniscule chance of that, waiting 5 days didn't seem like a good idea.
I changed my train ticket and came back to NY late Thursday night, all the while semi-panicked. I called the doctor's again on Friday and insisted on seeing the doctor. The nurse once again tried telling me it wasn't neccessary. I insisted. She relented.
I was literally a mess as the clock ticked Friday morning. They let me do a sono, and I got to see baby girl moving per usual. My placenta was fine, and the cervical plug was fine too. I then had a visit with the OB who did an internal exam and found the source of the spotting: a polypse on my cervix- strange!
I was sent home with orders to rest and abstain from any love making for a few weeks.
Phew. A relief. I cannot tell you how relieved we were.
I took the afternoon off and went for a manicure-pedicure, and met my girlfriends that evening for dinner and Sex and the City. I've been definitely working too hard lately, and not taking good care of myself. The weekend was devoted to just taking it easy and reminding myself that baby girl (and thus my health) is priority number 1.
Sometimes we need these reminders.
Sunday, May 30, 2010
After looking around quite a bit (mostly online) I realised both husband and I really like the modern look for baby's furniture. Ofcourse that market is mainly dominated by the luxury brands with $1000+ cribs.
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Monday, May 24, 2010
(belly at 25 weeks)
Friday, May 14, 2010
Work has been so busy recently that I haven't had time to visit your blogs or post as often as I'd like. I often think of topics I want to do posts on, or wonder how those of you whom I read regularly are doing... Note to self: must make time!
How far along: 24 weeks
Total weight change: 20 pounds since I found out I was preggers.
Maternity clothes: still detesting maternity wear, but really embracing dresses. I bought a couple of empire waisted dresses from regular stores (Banana Republic, Anne Taylor Loft etc) in a size larger and they're working out beautifully.
Stretch marks: no
Sleep: knock on wood, still getting a good night's sleep. Also it's been a week but I haven't been getting up to go pee. I notice my belly seems to be a little higher recently so maybe the pressure is off the bladder? Correlated to the sleep- boundless energy lately!
Movement: really enjoying little love's bursts of movement :) It makes me smile each and every time. I can actually feel her moving when I'm sitting/standing now. It's amazing.
Best moment this week: see above
Food cravings: seem to be gone... but lately I really crave milk, which is strange since I've never been a milk drinker. Unfortunately, heartburn has arrived in full force, usually appearing every evening. I've been eating a good breakfast and lunch, and basically eating yogurt/milk and fruits/some crackers for dinner. I can't handle anything else. My appetite dissapears come night time, most likely due to the heartburn that appears no matter what I eat.
What I miss: NYC gets gorgeous in the Spring time, and suddenly there are lots of social events organized around outdoor bars/restaurants. There's something about being outdoors that makes me miss a good cocktail... a classic dirty martini or a margarita on the rocks. mmm.
What I'm looking forward to next: hmmm. I've been enjoying every step of this pregnancy, but enjoying it day by day. If I have to think ahead, I can't wait to be in the third trimester soon!
Monday, May 3, 2010
Total weight change: up a pound
Maternity clothes: Still learning to adapt to my growing belly. Perhaps it's my modest nature, but I really dislike tight clothing that draws attention to my belly area. Men seem to ogle at that which makes me feel really gross. I prefer flowy, loose items.
Stretch marks: no
Sleep: doing much better, finally! Have been sleeping a good 8 hours most nights, getting up maybe once for the loo.
Best moment this week: feeling a sharp kick earlier today. Reminds me in the middle of a busy work day that I have our daughter growing in me. It's an amazing feeling :)
Movement: I feel things every once it a while- I've noticed that if I'm hungry but being a little lazy about getting up to go eat something, I'll get a noticeably sharp kick. That's happened twice now. Otherwise I don't feel drastic movement. It's more like flutters. Usually at nighttime if I lie flat on my back on the bed. I can't wait to feel more, more regularly.
Food cravings: ugh, it's return of the heartburn!! Today had a salad for lunch and had heart burn? Had no tums at work so suffered through it. Had a smoothie once I got home and once again heart burn? I took a tums and forced myself to eat some dinner. I seem to be past the cravings stage of my pregnancy.
Gender: it's been a week since we found out it's a girl, and it still makes me smile each time I think of her as that :)
What I miss: moving around easily in bed. Gosh turning has become a real battle!
What I'm looking forward to next: more movement?
Milestones: a few weeks away from the 3rd T!!
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
So you all know how I’ve been concerned about my rapid weight gain… well when I was home with my parents last two weeks, as I mentioned there was no scale, and I was eating way more than I normally do. Or at least I wasn’t spending hours a day fretting about my eating decisions. Nor was I getting in my daily 40 minute walks or thrice a week gym sessions.. I decided to not think about it.
Well surprise surprise, I lost a pound!!
I only found this out after I was back in NY and checked my weight. And I literally stood in shock. Then thinking back on the past two weeks I realized something. Yes I ate a lot while I was home but almost none of it was processed. My parents generally eat really healthy… We started the day with yogurt and fresh tropical fruits. Lunch was often a raw papaya salad or pomelo salad with shrimp, with a small portion of carbs on the side. An afternoon snack of more tropical fruits. Dinner was rice, and lentils and fresh veggies. My taste buds felt alive, I felt full and satisfied, and the food was delicious and fresh and amazing.
I also realized how great it is to be outside the US and not be exposed to so much processed food. I almost ate nothing processed.
I swam a few times a week. And that was about the only exercise I got.
And that is how I lost a pound.
Really offers some interesting things to think about doesn’t it?
Since I’ve been back, I’ve gained 1 lb back. That puts me at a 1lb gain for 4 weeks. In 22 weeks, I've gained 16 lbs total.
In saying this, I want to be clear and say I’m not trying to lose weight or not gain what my baby/body needs. It’s more that I was concerned, with my insulin resistance issues, about the rapid weight gain. At my last doctor’s visit, she said with some women, you gain a lot initially and then it slows down. Perhaps that’s what is happening with me. But I am going to try sticking to the lots of fresh fruits and veggies, with good carbs routine.