Gender Reveal!

IMG_8657We were very excited for our 20 week ultrasound yesterday, where we were able to see our little one moving around again and found out that baby is very healthy. Being able to feel baby moving at the same time that you see it happening on the sonogram is just the weirdest, most amazing experience ever. This time we even got to do the 3D ultrasound so we could see baby’s face – we are already in love!! Continue reading

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Almost time for the big reveal!

I’m so excited because tomorrow is the day we will find out if Baby P is a boy or a girl!! We have our ultrasound in the morning, then we’ll do a small gender reveal party for our families in the evening. We’ll let the rest of the world know sometime after that.

Until then, let us know what you think we are having in the poll below! If you buy into any of the old wives’ tales in predicting gender, you can find my results in Baby P’s week 19 update. Continue reading

Surprise!

Geoff, Henry and I are so happy to announce that we are expecting Baby #2! Henry is very excited to be a big brother, and we can’t wait to be a family of FOUR!

I’m currently 14 weeks along (hello, second trimester), but here is the sonogram from a few weeks ago at our 8 week appointment. For the record, that’s a baby, not a shrimp.

So far my bump has been much more prominent than last time (click here for a comparison to 15 weeks with Henry). I haven’t taken many bumpies yet, but below are a couple from 13 weeks. I’ll add them here as we go so you can see them all in one spot. The ones from when I was pregnant with Henry are still up there, too.

So that’s the big news!! I’m way too busy with Henry to post weekly like I did last time (I mean, c’mon – I can barely keep up with the monthly posts), but I’ll do my best to post updates and new developments. Thanks to everyone who has sent us love and well wishes! Baby #2 is due March 22, 2016.

Meeting Henry

It took me awhile to write this post since I didn’t want to leave anything out. It is pretty lengthy, so thanks for bearing with me!

It all started on the way home from the annual “Friendsgiving” party we have with our friends. I was 39 weeks, 5 days pregnant and ready to pop, and I started having contractions on the drive back to our house.

I was pretty sure this was the real deal, so I called the nurse hotline to confirm when they would want us to go to the hospital. We were told to wait until the contractions were less than six minutes apart for at least two straight hours, then to call back for further instructions.

Geoff started helping me time my contractions using a worksheet we had gotten at one of our classes, but what I really found useful was an iPhone app called “Full Term” that times your contractions for you and gives you averages on how far apart they are an how long they last. All I had to do was push start and stop.

My contractions were sort of all over the place, ranging from 5  to 20 minutes apart and lasting around 20-30 seconds each, so around 10 p.m. we decided to go to bed and try and get some sleep in preparation for what was coming. Geoff fell right to sleep, while I squirmed through my contractions for an hour before exhaustion overcame me. Even then I was only able to sleep for a little over an hour and I was waking up every four to six minutes from the contractions getting stronger and stronger.

When I couldn’t take laying in bed waiting anymore, I got up and decided to take a shower in case I wasn’t able to take one later on. After that I rounded up the last few hospital bag items we needed and got ready to head into the hospital. I called the nurse hotline again around 3:00 a.m. (after two hours of timing my contractions to be less than six minutes apart) and was told to come to the hospital as soon as we were able.

So I woke up Geoff who had been sleeping for about four hours, he took a shower and I dried my hair (it was only about 18 degrees outside), we fed the cat and headed into the hospital. I was so uncomfortable and tired that I barely remember the drive.

We got checked into the hospital, then just waited around for about an hour until the doctor came to make her rounds and to confirm that we were going to be staying for the delivery and not sent home to wait it out. In the meantime, Geoff decided to open the blinds in our room and we were surprised to see that there was a mini blizzard going on outside!

Henry's first snow

Once the doctor confirmed we were going to stay (I was at dilated to 4 cm by this point), we were walked through all the paperwork, including the epidural risks/consent. This was all supposed to be “before labor gets too bad.”

Contractions were pretty manageable at this pointI also got my IV all hooked up, which I had been dreading. I asked for some numbing cream so at least I wouldn’t feel most of it, and the nurse was happy to oblige. That’s when she told me that she normally worked the day shift and was just filling in for someone that night. She said since it was nearing the end of her shift she was starting to get really tired. Just what you want to hear from someone who is about to shove a giant needle into you! Luckily she grabbed another nurse to actually put in my IV since she realized she might not have been the best person for the job. So this new nurse comes in and tries to put the IV into one of the two spots where I had the numbing cream. Even with the cream it still hurt pretty bad, so I was NOT HAPPY when she told me she didn’t get it in because I had “tough skin.” She then decided she didn’t want to try the other numb spot on my hand and tried for a spot further up my wrist. This one hurt like a you-know-what. And guess what? IT STILL DIDN’T WORK. At this point I was clearly unhappy, so someone grabbed a THIRD nurse to try to put in the IV. This lady was my angel, since she used a numb spot and got it in on the first try.

At this point my water hadn’t broken on its own, so my doctor planned on breaking it for me when she came for rounds over the lunch hour. I was okay with this, since my contractions were strong but manageable. Geoff helped me breathe through each one. What really helped was having him watch them on the monitor and actually tell me when he could see that each one was going away. That way I knew the pain was about to go away. The weird part was that in between each contraction I felt completely fine. Tired, but not uncomfortable.

When the doctor arrived she came in and checked me. I was making progress and was dilated to 6 cm! She had me lay back in between contractions and broke my water, which didn’t feel like anything at all other than wet. They started putting my bed back in the upright position, and on the way up I felt instantly nauseous. I told the nurse I thought I was going to throw up, and she grabbed me a barf bag just in time. Luckily I hadn’t eaten since Friendsgiving, so there wasn’t anything in my stomach but water. The weird part was that I wasn’t having a contraction at the time, so I wasn’t in any pain. I mentioned it to the nurse and she said it is because I probably had a major cervical change right after they broke my water. Turns out the baby dropped from -2 to almost +2 instantly, which is what caused the vomiting. This whole water-breaking process only took about 30 seconds, and they told me that now that my water was broken I could start to push as soon as I was dilated to 10 cm.

The contractions were fairly strong at this point, but I was still able to get through them. I asked the nurse if they would get much worse, because if this was the strongest they would be and they were only going to get more frequent then I could probably stick it out and do a natural childbirth. About 10 seconds later I started having a horrible contraction that was way worse than anything I had felt yet. I only lasted through one more of those before I asked for an epidural.

The anesthesiologist came in pretty quickly (I later found out we were the only ones in the labor and delivery ward at that point) and asked me to sit up and dangle my legs off the edge of the bed, round my shoulders and push my lower back out toward him. He called this “the position.” In order to accomplish this, my bed had to be raised up off the floor so my feet wouldn’t touch the ground. I was pretty nervous about the giant needle, but it turns out that the feet dangling part was the hardest. I must have been using my feet to take some of the pressure out of the contractions, because as soon as my feet left the ground the pain was intensified again. This time the contraction was so strong that I started vomiting again and I wasn’t able to get into “the position.” They warned me earlier that the whole epidural process would take around 10-15 minutes, which for me was a blur of contractions and quite possibly the worst thing I’ve ever experienced. Apparently the anesthesiologist did mine really fast, so I guess it is good that it didn’t last longer than it did.

It took awhile for the epidural to kick in, but when it did my legs were completely numb. The weird part was that I could still wiggle my toes even though I couldn’t feel them. Since the baby was so low already I also had an incredible amount of pressure going on “down below,” which wasn’t painful but was so strong that it was really hard for me to breathe through the contractions.

I don’t remember how many contractions I had before they told me I could start pushing, but it can’t have been many. The nurse grabbed one of my legs and Geoff grabbed the other, I grabbed behind my thighs and, in the words of my doctor, I tried to “push the pressure away.” Geoff told me later that watching me push through those contractions was the worst part for him. I couldn’t catch my breath after each one, so I probably sounded terrible. I was pushing for around thirty minutes before little Henry was born.

Once Henry’s head was out, the doctor told me to look down, but I still couldn’t see anything. Geoff didn’t look at that point either. It wasn’t until Henry was about 3/4 of the way out that we both saw our son for the first time. They plonked him on my chest and started cleaning him up right away, though I was surprised at how clean he was. In my head he was going to be all gory and gross, but that wasn’t the case at all.

IMG_0184

Little man didn’t pink up right away so they took him from my chest pretty quickly and put him on the warmer. He got an APGAR score of 8 (both times) because he was still a little blue. Luckily that didn’t last long and Henry was able to come back and hang out with his mommy and daddy for the rest of the day. His grandmas and grandpas, uncles and aunts came to visit him right away, and it was clear by how full our room was that Henry is already a much-loved little boy. We couldn’t be happier to bring him home with us on his due date, Wednesday, November 27, 2013.

Week 39: BabyWatch 2013 Begins…

Seven days until D-Day and I’m still pregnant. I’ve reached the point where if I call someone the first thing out of their mouth is, “Is this baby coming?!” The good part about this is that people answer my calls no matter when/where they are, but are quickly disappointed when I am just calling to say hello or to have them send me a recipe or something.

At least I’m not alone. This week’s email from Pregnant Chicken says, “It’s right around this time that there’s a slooow shift from you being perceived as a glowing woman that is creating life, into a fat husk that’s hoarding that adorable baby they all want to see.” (By the way, if you’re pregnant, definitely subscribe to the weekly emails she sends out – they are awesome and hilarious.)

Remember when I had ankles?

Remember when I had ankles?

Not much is new this week. I’m still uncomfortable and not sleeping very well. My feet look like sausages half the time and my fingers are so swollen I can’t wear my wedding rings. Geoff put a pillow under our mattress so my feet are elevated while I sleep, and that has really been helping a lot.

We had our weekly doctor appointment on Monday, and we did another blood draw to check on my low platelet count. I’m at 135 now, so they have gone up slightly since last time, but the important thing is that they are staying steady in the 130s and not dropping near the 100 mark (which is when you have to see a hematologist to determine whether or not you can get an epidural). I think that was my last blood draw until baby comes, so yay for no more needles!

According to the doctor, I’m now 2 centimeters dilated and still 50% effaced, which is not really a change from last week’s appointment. I’m weirdly disappointed that I’m not further along, since I started dilating three weeks ago. I have two more Monday appointments scheduled, so cross your fingers that I’ll either have the baby before I have to go to both of them or that I’ll be further along at the next one so I don’t feel like I’m just waiting for something to happen.

People have started asking me if I’m nervous for labor, and the truthful answer is that I’m really not. Maybe it is because I know I’m in good hands, or because I’m very prepared as to what to expect, or because I can always get an epidural if I can’t handle the pain, or maybe I’m just excited to get this show on the road, but I’m not afraid. I keep expecting a wave of panic to set in, but it never comes. I mean, there’s no point in being afraid anyway, since I can’t really get out of it now!

We’ve had lots of guesses for the date of baby’s arrival. If you’d like to join in you can comment below or send me a message and I’ll add you to the calendar I’ve started.

This week according to What to Expect:

Your baby’s weight and height have probably increased only a little from last week (and your overstretched skin at 39 weeks pregnant is probably grateful for that). But his or her brain is still developing rapidly (a pace that continues during the first three years of life), with changes you’ll be able to recognize firsthand as your baby’s skill-packed bag of tricks expands almost daily. 

Heard that babies cry a lot?  There’s definitely truth to that rumor — as you’ll find out soon enough (and usually during the middle of the night).  But what you may not have heard is that tiny babies don’t produce tiny tears when they cry, since their tear ducts aren’t open for business yet.  While you’ll be consoling your crying baby right from the get-go, it won’t be until sometime after the first month that you’ll be wiping tears off those chubby cheeks.

Your baby’s skin has now finally changed from pink to white (no matter how dark-skinned he or she will be eventually; pigmentation will occur soon following birth). That’s because a thicker fat layer has been deposited over the blood vessels (making your baby’s cheeks —  both kinds — pinchably and kissably round).