Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Feeling cold

I think the biggest difference between this pregnancy and my previous two is that, not only am I not roasting hot all the time, I'm actually cold.

With D, I was a furnace - especially my feet. My feet were so hot I quite literally wore flip flops and sandals until after he was born... and he was born in December. I remember the people I worked with thinking I was crazy for coming to work in my sandals, but my feet were so hot, I couldn't stand to wear full shoes, let alone socks.

With G it wasn't nearly as intense, but I was still warmer most of the time. I bought one maternity sweater because I thought it was too cute to pass up (he was born in May, so I was pg through the winter), but I think I only wore it a couple of times because I was always too warm for it.

This time, I'm actually cold sometimes. I've been wearing socks at home all the time because my feet feel chilly. It's particularly strange because since having my boys, I've felt like my body stayed hotter, even once my pregnancies were over. I have this stack of old sweaters I used to wear to work in the winter and I haven't touched them - and not because I don't have to dress up for work now, but because I couldn't fathom wearing a sweater without dying of heat stroke! But here I am, pregnant and expecting to feel warmer still, and I'm curling up in blankets on the couch and wearing socks with slippers over the top! It isn't as if the temperature in my house has changed - for whatever reason, I'm just feeling cooler this time.

Other than that, I can't point to anything that is starkly new or different with this pregnancy, at least at this point. My first two pregnancies felt like polar opposites (which is ironic, because my boys personalities are completely opposite). If I had a symptom with D, I probably didn't with G; if I didn't have a symptom with D, I probably did with G. Not entirely true, but in many ways that's how it felt. I was totally convinced I was not pregnant with G because I figured I'd feel the same way I felt in early pregnancy the first time - and I sure didn't. But this time, some of it is familiar, some not as much (like being cold), but it doesn't feel so dramatically different from my other two experiences.

I had a doctor appointment this morning (I'll be 18 weeks tomorrow) and so far all is well. My blood pressure was almost low (but still fine), our results from the quad screen came back normal, baby's heart rate was 154. I also haven't gained too much weight at this point, which is nice. I'm up 10lbs or so, which is great for this point in my pregnancy. I think I gained more than that during the first 12 weeks with both my previous pregnancies, so I hope that's a good sign. I'd love to gain a more reasonable amount of weight this time around. But I am proud to say I haven't been stressing about it - just trying to keep from overeating. I've realized that I don't have to eat every single time I get a little hungry - it's ok to be a bit hungry between meals/snacks because I know I'll eat again soon and I know I'm eating plenty.

In any case, so far so good, and that makes me happy!

Sunday, March 22, 2009


There is a person growing inside me right this second. That still freaks me out.

I'm a bit over 16 weeks... noticing occassional pokes from the stinker, feeling good overall, getting bigger everyday with tons of time left to grow. Time is flying by; March is almost over already and it seems as if it just began. If it's possible, I think this pregnancy is going by faster than my last one did, and that one seemed to fly. In some ways it feels as if September is a long way off, but in other ways I feel like I can't believe I'm closing in on 17 weeks in a few days.

Its kind of freaking me out.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Maternity swimsuits

Why is it that so many maternity clothes manufacturers seem to forget the fact that the belly is not the only thing that grows during pregnancy? And that us busty women might want to wear clothes that fit too?

Maternity swimsuits are the WORST.

I have a maternity swimsuit that I bought last time I was pregnant. I suffered with it because I'd bought it and couldn't justify buying another one. Why I didn't send it back the instant I tried it on, I have no idea - maybe I figured it wasn't that bad or I could make it work and didn't want the hassle of returning something I'd bought online. Whatever my reasoning at the time, I have a swimsuit from Old Navy that absolutely does not fit my chest - AT ALL. I don't think this thing would fit anyone with a cup size larger than a B. And believe me, I'm nowhere near a B. Finding a good fit is tough because I'm not big all over, but I have big boobs and when I'm pregnant I have really big boobs. So this halter thingy is a disaster. It's a tankini, and the bottoms fit fine, but the top has this seam that is supposed to go under the bust line. Laughable. If I put it on the way it is intended to be worn my boobs fall out of it as soon as I move a little. Obviously not great for taking the kids to swim lessons at the YMCA.

I love to swim and I really love to swim when I'm pregnant, so I definitely need a swimsuit. Today I tried on the crazy small-boobed halter thing and it was worse than I remembered. When I was pregnant with G, I wore it, but pulled it up so it covered better. But it was so uncomfortable I often wore a bra underneath just so I didn't feel like I was going to fall completely out of the thing - and that's attractive. And when you're underwater it tends to float up (or did until my belly was really big) so I always felt like it was floating up around my neck and my boobs were hanging out the bottom.

So now I'm on a quest to find a decent fitting maternity swimsuit to get me through this pregnancy. Quest is really an appropriate term, because this ain't easy.

There are tons of suits out there, but many (most?) of them are ridiculously expensive. I've looked at some really cute suits online, but there's no way I'm paying over $100 for a swimsuit that I'm going to wear this year, and this year only. If I was pregnant for the first time and knew I'd be having a couple more kids after this, it might make sense to invest in a high quality swimsuit. But I wasn't a swimmer when I was pregnant the first time, so I didn't get a suit. And the second time I cheaped out with the Old Navy one and should have at least found one that fit better, even if I didn't spend more money. So here I am.

And judging from the pictures online, fit is going to be a problem. I can see how women with small boobs would be loving their newfound voluptuousness and be happy to show it off a little. But showing off a nice chest and flashing the world enough boob to make Jennifer Lopez blush are two different things. So many of the swimsuits I've seen are similar to the one I have - a halter top that ties in the back, has no support whatsoever and doesn't have enough fabric in the front to cover one of my boobs, let alone both of them.

And you'd think more maternity stores might actually carry one or two swimsuits in stock, even though it isn't summer, right? I mean, we have indoor pools and I certainly see plenty of pregnant women at the Y who bring their kids to swim lessons. That can happen in winter, right? But I haven't seen any in stores. Granted, I live in smaller community so the shopping options are limited, and I do need to call a couple stores that aren't too far but farther than I'd want to go without knowing if they have anything... but the point is, I'm afraid I'm going to have to buy online and given my experience with that last time, I really want to be able to try these things on.

Dressing yourself when you're pregnant can be frustrating in general and I hate every dollar I have to spend on maternity clothes, since I know how temporary this is and I know I'm not planning to do it again. I don't want to invest much in clothes I'm going to be out of come fall. But I also have to wear something every day, and I know I need a new swimsuit. I want to get back in the pool for some laps, I want to be able to take G to swimming if it works with our schedule, and we're going on vacation this summer where it will be warm. I just wish I could find one that wasn't ugly (although color and pattern at this point are secondary concerns), didn't cost a fortune, and miracle of miracles, actually fits my chest.

Is that really too much to ask?

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Running a race

I ran the St. Patrick's Day Dash today. This year it was a 3.7 mile course through the city. And when I say "ran" I mean "participated" - I ran some, but probably walked more. Hey, I am over 15 weeks pregnant, after all :).

The weather was almost as bad as it could be. Not quite, because it wasn't too windy, but it was snowing/slushing when we got there and that turned to heavy rain by the time our wave started. It was cooooooold and we were soaking wet. But despite that, it was still really fun. I've done this race before and it's a blast. People get all dressed up in crazy hats and costumes - very festive event.

The amazing thing is that my husband did it with me. That is something else because my husband does not run. I've tried to get him to run with me for ages, even just as a workout and he always professes to HATE running. He bases this off his memories of high school football workouts and the time he ran 5 miles around the track for some fundraiser thing. Yeah, running lines in football practice and running around a track for a million years are exactly like running in a cool St. Patrick's Day race. Sure.

He's mentioned things about running in the last couple of months and I had a feeling I might be getting to him. A few weeks ago we were talking about this race and I told him my goal was to have him do it with me next year - I could use it to get back into running shape after the baby and he could use it to get into running shape period. He said, hey, I'll do it this year! So I assumed he was serious and signed him up :).

After a lot of "what was I thinking?" talk this past week, we actually drove up there and went for it - horrible weather and all. I'm not in a position to run that distance anymore - my belly is big for 15 weeks and there's way too much pressure on my bladder (and I started the race needing to pee, which of course made it worse). And he hasn't run any distance since, well, those high school football practices. He has been working out regularly for quite some time now and has lost over 30lbs (woo hoo honey!), but he's not in running shape so he wasn't sure what to expect. We stuck together and ran for a while in the beginning and then walked most of the middle - most of the distance, really. We ran again at the end to finish strong. Through it all we had a good time chatting as we went, talking about things like running shoes, shin splints, our kids, our summer plans and how much fun it would be to do a race together if we were both in a position to run the whole thing.

The fact that the two of us pinned on race numbers together today is stunning. So many things have happened in the last few months that I never would have thought possible, but wanted so badly, and this was one of them. I love doing races and I love the idea of us doing them together sometimes - bringing the kids along when it works, having them join us when they're older. I love the idea of being that active family that looks forward to these kinds of events and is in the kind of shape to do them. For the first time, I can actually see the possibility of that idea being a reality for us. And that rocks.

My SIL came along and ran it too and she was a total rockstar. She ran the whole thing, hills and all, and made pretty good time too. She's never run that far before and was pretty nervous, but I think she learned something valuable about herself today - the same thing I learned when I started doing races. She learned what's possible, what she can accomplish if she pushes herself a little. That's a great lesson to learn and I was so thrilled to hear her say on the way home, "Gotta find out when the next one is!"

I'm so glad we went today, despite being wet and freezing. It was a cool moment for me and my husband and I'm still so amazed at how many of those we've been having lately.

Good times.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Chinese gender prediction

Has anyone else noticed that the Chinese gender prediction chart is a lot more complicated that it seems? Not that I put any stock in such things, but they're fun anyway. While I should be putting away laundry right now, I've been trying to see if the Chinese chart was accurate for my boys, and see what it says about this baby. You'd think that would be easy, right? Match my age at conception with month of conception and there you go. Not quite.

One site I found says you're supposed to use your lunar age and the lunar month of conception - basically using the Chinese calendar. Ok, makes sense since one would assume that the chart is probably based on the calendar they actually used, so I went about finding a site to calculate those things (they had a link, but it didn't work). But other sites don't mention the need to convert your age or the month to lunar, so is it necessary or not? I really have no idea.

Using my real age at conception and the real month of conception (not converting either to the Chinese calendar), the chart is actually accurate - it predicted boy for both D and G, and predicts a boy this time. I'll buy that for a dollar ;). But aren't you supposed to use lunar dates, hence using the actual Chinese calendar?

If you use my lunar age and the Chinese month, it predicts boy for D, girl for G and girl for this baby. Hmmmm. 50/50 for my boys, and obviously the result remains to be seen for this baby.

And, just for fun, if you use my lunar age but the real month, it gives girl for D, girl for G and boy for this baby. I doubt that one was right ;).

So based on my very scientific calculations and a 700 year old chart found with a dead guy in China, I'm either having a boy, or a girl. Gotta love gender prediction!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Strange conversation and random thoughts

I found myself having such a strange conversation with my husband today. He was completely kidding, but he said something about "what if we decide to have four kids," and "hey, if this is another boy, maybe we should try one more time." I knew he must be kidding, and he was, but it was so strange what those comments did to my state of mind. I'm already struggling with the concept of being done having kids - not because I think I'll want more or because I'll miss having a baby around or because we would actually try again for a girl. I think it's because we'll be closing a chapter of our lives for good (assuming we do something permanent about it, which we're discussing). I'm going to be ready for that chapter to end - ready to have my body back for good, not just for a couple of years; ready to lose the weight, get in shape and stay that way. I'll be ready for our family to start growing up, moving out of diapers and naps and nursing.

I already worry a bit about how I'm going to juggle the needs and schedules of an active four-almost-five-year-old, a two year old and a newborn baby. D will have preschool 3 mornings a week and at some point we'll want to go back to having some other activities for both boys like gymnastics, toddler gym and swimming (not all at once, but those are the usual classes they like). I'll want to get back to my regular workout schedule, but suddenly I'm not only juggling two kids, but three - and this one is going to need a zillion naps, nursing sessions and who knows what else. The thought of going back to having a tiny baby again after this one - yikes.

But when he said that, it still made me pause. Hmm, what if? It took mere seconds before reality came flooding back and we both laughed - noooooooooo, we don't want four! But for a split second, I wondered if he'd been serious, could he talk me into it? Probably not, but it surprised me that there was this part of me deep down inside that didn't shout "NO!" Most of me did, but that tiny part...

Not that I'm saying I want to have another after this baby. When I was pg with G there were times that I wondered if it would be my last pregnancy. We hadn't fully decided on whether to have two or three and I spent some time exploring my feelings about whether it should be the last time. There were moments when I felt it would be ok if we only had two, if that had been my last pregnancy experience. But more often I felt that I wanted to do it again. This time not so much. I'm so grateful to be pregnant, and don't have anything to complain about, but at the same time, I'm happy that this is my last. It feels great to know that things are in motion and when this baby is here, we can move on from our trying-and-having-baby years.

It also makes me want to enjoy this experience as much as possible. I already feel like its flying by and I'm afraid I'll be too busy to notice. I'm going to wake up one day and realize I'm as big as a house and really ought to pack my hospital bag. Hopefully I can slow down enough to enjoy the ride till then.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Feeling pregnant

I'm genuinely feeling pregnant these days, and not just from nausea and fatigue. My belly isn't "big" yet at all - but it has reached the point of being big enough that I'm noticing it. I'm sure the casual observer wouldn't realize I'm pregnant, or might wonder a bit but not dare ask for fear of being wrong. But I feel like I grew outward about an inch today. Nothing really fits - maternity clothes are too big, but my regular clothes don't fit either. It's a fun stage - sarcasm intended ;).

I may be feeling the slightest bits of movement. Hard to say, since it is quite early for that (just over 14 weeks), but I did feel D distinctly at about 16 weeks and G probably at that time or a touch earlier. So it isn't impossible. I certainly know what it feels like. But it also might still just be little intestinal twitches or air bubbles. What makes me think it could be baby is that I feel these little flutters particularly when I squish my belly in some way - like bending over or if I press on my lower abdomen with my hands. I think I might be feeling baby push back.

We heard the heartbeat for the first time last Tuesday. Wow, that's a great sound. Hearing that brought it home in a whole new way that yes, I'm actually pregnant. We're doing this again! My doctor found the heartbeat instantly - literally, doppler hit belly and sound emerged. It took him a little bit to get a good reading on the actual rate, which turned out to be 152bpm, since we were hearing my heartbeat some and he said the baby seemed to be moving around a lot.

I can't help but wonder what this baby is going to be like and I find myself thinking about the traits we saw in the boys while I was pg with each of them that seemed to carry foward into their time outside the womb. D was a kicker and a firecracker from the start. He was always moving and heck, he still is. I remember the tech at our 20 week ultrasound had trouble getting measurements because he was so active. G, on the other hand, was mellow-yellow. He did move plenty, but at our ultrasound he seemed so chill, almost like he was lying there with his head cuddled up against the placenta. He's a monster toddler right now, but he still has this underlying mellowness to his personality that I swear I could see before he was even born.

I keep telling my husband that this is going to be our "Ta da!" baby. More than once I've said I feel like this baby was knocking on our door for months before we conceived. The subject of when to try kept coming up over and over and then we finally did decide to go off birth control, and BAM! we were pregnant. It happened so fast, it feels like this baby was waiting and saying, "Come on guys, I'm ready to come into the world, let's get this started!" I knew I was pregnant so much earlier than I knew with my boys, I tested earlier than I did with them, we found the heartbeat instantly the very first try, and things seem to be moving so quickly. I'm showing earlier (which is of course because its my third, but still), and baby seems determined to keep his or herself top of mind for me.

It makes me wonder if I'm going to need to rush to the hospital because baby's trying to make a grand entrance, LOL!

We'll see how the next six-ish months go. For now, I'm feeling pretty good, trying very hard not to stress over the gender (I'm geniunely having boy feelings, for the record) and trying to decide what I need to add to my maternity wardrobe, if anything. I'll need a few things, since I'll be so pregnant during the summer, but I'm not motivated to spend a whole lot of money since I'm not planning to do this again.

In any case, time is flying and in no time I'll be out of the dreaded "looking fat, not pregnant" stage :).

Hard on a Friday night

Man it's hard to work on a Friday night. In order to reasonably keep up with the projects I have, I should really work 4 or 5 nights a week - these days 5 or 6, really. I've been quite busy, which is good because goodness knows we need the money. Having this baby isn't going to be cheap. In any case, right now I have stuff going on Monday and Thursday nights, so I really can't afford to take tonight "off", yet I'm having an extraordinarily difficult time simply changing over to my work computer. It just feels wrong somehow to have to work at 8:00 at night on a Friday. I guess I spent enough years with an 8-5, M-F schedule I just want to be DONE with responsibilities on Friday nights - even if for just a short while.