Monday, April 26, 2010

Pregnancy News

Not much has been going on at our house lately. We made a trip to the zoo with Allison for the first time, got the nursery ready, got another sonogram, and have been enjoying more and more time outside since the weather has warmed up.

I feel guilty, though for my lack of documentation on this pregnancy. Last time, I felt consumed by it. Every day I wanted to know how Allison was developing inside me, and what fruit to compare her to that week. I even kept a ruler in my desk drawer at work so I could draw a line on a sheet of paper the exact length of my baby so I could gawk at her size. This pregnancy I will occasionally look up what is developing from week to week, but that's it. This child is loved - don't get me wrong - but the process is so different the second time around.

Just to be sure I don't make it this whole pregnancy without any notes, here is what's currently going on. For one, she is still a 'she'! We had another sonogram a couple weeks ago, that was done at a sonography school by a girl I used to work with. Yay for free sonograms! They confirmed that she was in fact a girl, so I could rest easy knowing I was fully prepared. The week before our second look at her my OB scared me when we had a conversation that went like this:

OB: Do you know what you're having?
K: Yes, it's a girl.
OB: (Pauses, looks at his chart) Who told you that?
K: Um, the lady who did our 18 week sonogram.
OB: Huh, ok. Well congratulations.

At that point a nurse walked in and we moved onto another topic before I could circle back to find out why he seemed so uncertain. Pregnancy brain kept me from remembering the conversation at all until after I was half-way home.

So anyway, we got our sonogram, and they attempted to take some 3D pics of her, but her head is super low and pressed up against the placenta, so none of the pictures came out very clear. We did see that she already sucks on her fingers, though which is really cute. I'd be happy to have another thumb-sucker like Allison. The baby is measuring about 7-10 days small, but that's fine by me. She can grow after she gets out! She kicks almost non-stop, and sometimes it actually feels like she's trying to dig her way out (which is super uncomfortable!). And because of how low she is, my bladder is almost non-existent. I'm making 3-4 trips to the bathroom each night now, which is really cutting into my sleep. I told Frank last night that it felt silly to even flush anymore since I am basically doing the equivalent of spitting in the toilet. Sorry if that's TMI!

I believe we have finally settled on her full name, but that is still subject to change. As I mentioned before, we will be keeping it a surprise until she is born. Again, her due date is July 7th (my brother-in-laws birthday), but I'm really crossing my fingers that she will come in late June. I've decided not to induce this time, unless she goes past her due date, so waiting on her will be a new experience for me.

I've read a lot lately about birth plans that people have put together, and it's just another reminder of how NOT type-A I am. I'm an organizer and a planner, but that's where it ends for me. Here's my 'birth plan' (the extended version).

1. Keep the baby safe.
2. I better not feel anything!
3. By anything, I mean NOTHING.

You see, I worked in the labor and delivery wing of a hospital for a semester as part of a co-op program in high school my senior year. I saw a lot of births, and it was at that point that I started subconsciously deciding my own path during delivery. I wasn't even allowed to watch the natural births for some reason, but that was fine by me. Hearing the screaming all the way down the hall was all the exposure I needed. I will never understand it, but I will give a bravery badge to anyone who goes through it. I would need a lot more than a badge, though. Maybe a new car waiting for me in the parking lot - and it better have a HUGE bow on it!

I never wrote out my birth experience with Allison, although I still remember it like it was yesterday. It was seriously the best day of my life, and that's the kind of experience I want to capture again if possible.

On June 5, 2008 we checked into the hospital around 6am. By 7am I was signed in, changed into the hospital gown, and hooked up to the IV which was dripping pitocin to induce labor. When I got there I was already 3cm/100%, so I had a slight start on my own. I don't remember feeling any pain other than some slight cramping sensations around 9am. At that point I wanted the epidural because, if you reference the birth plan you'll see I didn't want to feel anything. I was terrified of the large needle used in the epidural, and I remember trembling in fear (and because I was freezing as a result of all the fluids they were pumping in me to stay hydrated). The nurse warned me before the part that is supposedly the worst, so I tensed up and gritted my teeth but never felt anything. About 15 seconds later I was still dying from anticipation, but she was already done and I never felt it! Almost immediately I felt this amazing warmth rush through me. My toes were no longer icy, I could feel my fingers, and there was no more cramping. Heaven! But, to be honest (and gross) the BEST part was getting a catheter! I know, TMI. But, for the first time in MONTHS I didn't feel like I had to pee!! Like I said, it was Heaven!! After that we had some family visit in between my cozy warm naps, and by 2:45pm it was time to push. The doctor came in to check on me before we got started, and he told me it usually takes around an hour of pushing, so he wanted to leave me in the able hands of the nurses until we got closer to the actual delivery. I believe I pushed about 3 times before they had to call him back in to deliver Allison. Then, the funniest thing happened. The sweet nurse who was there to care for Allison when she came out was standing behind my OB, and right when I'm told to push she whips a bite-sized Snickers out of her pocket and holds it out to Allison who has yet to make her appearance and says in a playful voice 'Come and get the Snickers!'. We were all laughing so hard that I wasn't even able to concentrate on pushing. I'll never forget that! Allison was born one push or so later at 3:14pm. After that it all flows together in my mind, but like I said - it was the most fun, beautiful, best day of my life.

I can't wait to meet my next baby girl and introduce her to her wonderful big sister. God's been so good to us!