Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Final Countdown and Updates Galore

36 weeks 2 days. 3 weeks 5 days until my due date...only 26 days away. Oh. my. goodness. I know being a first timer I might be late so I'm telling myself to be prepared to give birth anytime in March. March 13th is just an estimate. March 13th is just an estimate. March 13th is just an estimate. Alright, how about some updates??

Baby update: The baby is healthy and everything is going well. I have been measuring two weeks ahead for a couple months now when they do the tape measure measuring ("fundal height"). Via my last ultrasound at 25 weeks I measured a week ahead. What could this mean? Well, when you're measuring "ahead" or "big" doctors might start talking about inducing early or preparing for a c-section, two things I want to avoid. I did some reading and concluded the tape measure method isn't particularly accurate, especially if done by different people each time, which it almost always is in my case. I'm not going to worry about it unless I start measuring increasingly ahead (i.e., more than 2 weeks ahead). For now it's been consistent. We'll get another ultrasound around week 38 to check the little guy again. Oh, and he was head down at my last appointment...let's hope he stays that way.

We don't have a name yet. We have a list and unless lightening strikes we'll be naming him after he's born. I guess in the end it's just been too hard for us to name someone we haven't met. This naming thing is so much bigger than I ever appreciated. I mean, it's someone's name, our son's name, which he'll have for the rest of his life. Puts some pressure on for sure!

I'm having a baby shower next weekend (thanks Reina, Joan and Kim!!) and am very excited about it. It's incredible how much "stuff" comes into your life when you have a baby. We spent this weekend re-organizing closets to make room for the little guy's accoutremonts. We haven't baby proofed the place yet but Miguel is feeling like we have a little time since it's not until he's crawling that we have to worry. When do babies start crawling anyway? Man, I'm woefully uneducated in the baby development arena.

Body update: I'm feeling pretty good generally. I have aches and pains, some days are better than others in this department. I get cranky sometimes, but not too often (though, I will admit, the frequency is creeping up). Here's a post I wrote a few days ago on the pregnancy forum I frequent:
"30 days to go. I hope I make it. I've been struggling this past week. Tired, feeling ineffective at work, my thinking is slow and I just feel sort of in a daze and I'm not used to it. It's getting me down. I feel like I want to run away from everything. Blech. I'm ready to meet the little guy and have a very tangible reason for all this."
Like I said, some days are better than others. I've been feeling alright about my weight gain, 30 pounds, but really not wanting to gain much more. I wish that influenced my food choices but I have to admit, I'm pretty indiscriminate these days. My doc said it'd be fine if I gained no more weight, or at least not more than 5 pounds. Of course I hear, "You can gain five more pounds." I am looking forward to getting back to Weight Watchers. Here's a pic of me from just the other day.

Mostly I've been in awe at what my body is doing. The fact that I'm making another human being is just mind blowing. And that it's had the ability all along and was just sitting dormant. I look down and see my belly moving around, and feel him kicking and rolling around in there and, wow, is all I can say. I am so so so grateful that everything is working just as it is meant to.

Speaking of that...labor. Ahhh, labor. I know it's coming but I'm probably in denial. We took our hypnobirthing class, which was very encouraging. I haven't been practicing the relaxation techniques. No good excuse for that. But we did choose a doula, which comforts me to no end. She's very sweet and has lots of tools in her chest to help me manage. Miguel is very supportive of the natural childbirth route and we're going to write up our preferences to give to the nurses and doctors when we get to the hospital. I have faith in my body and in my ability to do what nature made it to do. Am I sounding like a hippie or what?

Nursery update: We tried to paint a border to add a little flair but we failed entirely. So we splurged and hired an artist friend to paint the border. She also painted a scene matching our bedding above the crib. I am SO HAPPY with it!!

This is the painting above the crib:

Here's a close up! Seriously, how cute is that?! After he's born and we presumably have a name she's going to paint his name above and to the left and add a dragonfly that will match the dragonfly in the bedding pic below.

This is the bedding.

And this is the border. Isn't it cute?!

She also put a few of the dragonflies near the ceiling. I am so thrilled, which makes me happy because we were concerned about spending the money. Yay!

Etc Updates: I'm fighting off anxiety about how we'll survive without my income while I'm off work. On one hand I feel so strongly about wanting to have time to bond with the little guy and on the other I worry about finances. Miguel and I still need to sit down and go over the numbers to prepare ourselves. I just hope we don't have to wipe out our emergency fund altogether. I'm so envious of countries that pay full income during maternity leave...and then struck with how much I have to be grateful for. We'll survive. My mom has offered to help with the insurance (which we found out we will have to pay once I'm off disability (which only lasts 6 weeks!)). That will help a lot.

I heard something recently, "Anxiety is looking into the future and finding a problem." That really struck me. Why would I want to find problems in the future that haven't happened yet? I read an article about that plane that went down the other day and the folks who died on it and was struck again, anxiety and worry are so wasteful. Life is short, life can be so rich and wonderful, enjoy every positive thing that comes along. So I'm trying not to let myself worry about money. If things aren't going well we will make new decisions at the time to manage. Until then, no need to worry.

Speaking of being off, my boss has been so supportive about my taking leave. I couldn't ask him for more, which is just an enormous relief. I struggle with feeling guilty about leaving while the program is still starting up but look forward to when I can return and really get into some project ideas that are floating around in my head.

Well, that's about all I can think of. Something tells me this is a long post. And something tells me the next time you hear from me might just be when I have a picture of a little baby to post!! Whoa, it's just so hard to grasp that all this is going to result in a baby in my arms. I can't fathom what it's like to be a mom, to hold my baby (outside my womb, that is), to have a third person in our home. Honestly I think I'm in a bit of denial that this is even happening! But indeed it is. Wish me luck!