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Month One

Weight/Length:  Hopefully quite a bit above birth weight by now. We’ll find out tomorrow. At his last weight check almost two weeks ago, he was 8lbs 1 oz, so still a few ounces away from birth weight.

Update: he was 9lbs 8oz!! That’s some good growth. Can’t believe he’s only an ounce bigger than D was when he was born.

Sleep: The entire first week of his life, I couldn’t tell what color his eyes were because he rarely opened them. Now, he’s more alert and even making eye contact with us, but he still sleeps most of the day. This would be great if it was CONSECUTIVE sleep but I’m lucky if I can get 4 straight hours at night. Usually it’s around 2.5-3 before he’s fussing to be fed. And speaking of fussing, this kid is FIDGETY. I remember D being a noisy newborn sleeper but this little guy takes it to a whole new level. I don’t even really use the monitor because I can hear him just fine without it.

Feeding: To my own amazement, we figured out nursing!! Of course, because of his weight issues early on, we had to introduce a bottle right away so I haven’t been off the hook with pumping. I probably pump about 3-4 times a day and he gets a bottle after most nursing sessions during the day. At night, he nurses and gets a big bottle before bed and then just nurses during his two middle-of-the-night wakeups. We supplemented with formula here and there the first two weeks but now that my milk is fully in, we haven’t had to use formula for the last two weeks and he’s really finally starting to chunk up a bit.

Firsts This Month: Everything is a first right now! First time meeting most of his grandparents, first trip to Target, first St. Patty’s Day, first trip to the park, first restaurant experience as a family of four…pretty much anything we do is a first.

Developments:  In the last week, he’s really started trying to master his head control when being held on our chest. He’s getting better at nursing and his physical appearance is looking less like a newborn, which makes me a little sad since he’s already outgrown newborn clothes and diapers.

Likes: I didn’t think we’d get so lucky the second time around with a baby that loved baths as much as D did, but we have! Sadly, with a toddler that requires bathing each night, we haven’t given him very many baths at all. I think we’re averaging about one a week right now. Other likes include his paci, his mobile, sleeping in the Boppy (which we only allow for naps), and more than anything – being held. I call him my little cuddle bug.

Dislikes:  Unlike his brother, he HATES diaper changes and cries almost every single time. He also hates it when we change his clothes, and dislikes being swaddled and sleeping flat on his back. I still put him in a sleep sack at night, but will typically leave at least one or both arms out.

What I’m Thankful For: A happy, healthy baby. I worked really hard to keep this one out of the NICU and I’m so glad it paid off. He’s perfectly healthy and I couldn’t be more thankful for that.

What I’m Looking Forward To:  Sleeping through the night!

How Mommy’s Doing: The first two weeks at home were ROUGH. I don’t remember having quite that much pain the first time around. Now that I’m 4 weeks out, I feel much better, though I still have moments where I’ll feel a twinge or burning sensation. Fortunately, it only last a couple of seconds.

At my follow-up appointment with my OB, she said everything looked great – my scar is healing nicely, my uterus is shrinking back down, and I’m cleared for exercise. Although, considering I get tired and sore just from walking for 20-30 minutes, I don’t see myself signing up for any marathons anytime soon.

My belly is still pretty big and the lower portion is still pretty tender, so clothes don’t fit and I don’t feel comfortable having anything even remotely tight around my belly. I’m looking forward to dress season.

But let’s talk about my boobs for a second. If I’m being completely honest, I kind of hate breastfeeding. I know I’m not supposed to say that because “breast is best” and whatnot, but it really sort of sucks. My boobs hurt most of the time; I have to wear nursing pads 24/7 or I’ll leak everywhere; I still have to pump a few times a day; I can’t go more than a couple of hours without having to nurse or pump – which means everything I do revolves around my boobs’ schedule; and I don’t care what anyone says – nursing is painful. It’s getting better, but it still hurts sometimes – especially the first 30 seconds or so that he latches, and that’s even WITH a nipple shield. And the gas. I don’t know why I assumed that babies who nurse rarely deal with gas but he swallows SO MUCH AIR when he’s nursing. So I spend roughly 20-30 minutes nursing and another 20-30 just trying to get him to burp. If he doesn’t burp? That pretty much guarantees spit-up or a fussy baby with a bellyache. Usually both. And I’m in desperate need of a massage after spending hours each day in nursing or pumping posture. All of that said, I’ll still continue this nursing journey, but I’m feeling a little cheated out of that blissful, harmonious, carefree nursing experience I’ve been sold by all the breastfeeding advocates out there. Maybe it will come in time, but right now? Not feeling it.

THIS is how I imagined it.

THIS is how I imagined it.

But THIS is how I feel.

But THIS is how I feel.

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I know this is only my second time at this rodeo I call parenting a newborn, but I feel like I’ve learned a few things that might be helpful to those coming up on their first or even second experience of bringing home a newborn baby.

1. Take a daily shower. When you don’t leave the house and your days and nights seem to all run together, it’s so easy to just say “screw it” and skip showering for a day or two (or three or four). Don’t do it. Why? Because between the leaky boobs, the baby spit-up on your shoulder and possibly in your hair, and the period-that-won’t-go-away (seriously – it’s like mother nature is making up for all that lost time when you didn’t have a period for 9+ months), you’ll feel so much better after you’ve spent a good 15 minutes in a warm, steamy shower. It’s cheaper than therapy and it’s also the only “me time” I get during the day so you better believe I’m taking it.

2. Don’t put away your maternity clothes. And don’t put on “real” clothes unless you absolutely have to. That’s right. Go ahead and get comfy in those granny panties. There won’t be any hanky-panky with your significant other for at least 6 weeks anyway. Since I had a c-section, I didn’t want anything touching my incision so pants were completely out for the first few days. Or they were pulled up really high, Urkel style. And I’ve already mentioned my undying love for the mesh underwear the hospital gives you. Make sure you take a few extras home for those first couple of days.

3. If friends offer to bring you food, take them up on it. I have some truly awesome friends. Since I couldn’t have sweets, carbs or alcohol, all of my friends brought me candy, cookies, cake, cupcakes, wine, beer, and champagne. My friends just GET ME, man. A few even brought dinner and I can’t tell you enough how helpful that is. I truly feel blessed to have so many amazing people in my life. So if someone offers to do something nice for you, let them. And return the favor when it’s their turn.

4. Stock up on your “new essentials”: nursing pads, Lanolin (hospital will provide a small tube for free), menstrual pads, and if you’re one of those more unfortunate souls like myself, you’ll also need Colace and maximum strength Preparation H. Yeah, it’s all as sexy as it sounds.

5.  Delegate all household chores to your significant other for the short term. (Or mom or sister or whoever is there and capable.) Since I’m not allowed to lift anything heavier than the baby and I’m not allowed to drive for the first two weeks, all laundry, errand running and grocery shopping falls to the hubs. I’ve done a couple of loads of dishes and folded some clothes, but that’s about it. Another tip? Use paper plates, at least those first couple of weeks. I know, I know, it’s wasteful and not eco-friendly but if we didn’t use them, we’d have to run the dishwasher 2-3 times a day.

6. Keep your smartphone handy at all times. My smartphone is my lifeline to the outside world. During my first pregnancy, I made friends with a group of ladies that were all expecting around the same time as me. Most of us were all first-timers and we really leaned on each other, sending middle-of-the-night tweets about fussy babies, sharing tips or advice where we could, but mostly just sympathizing because we were all there, in the trenches, together. Now, I’m a little on my own with #2, so when I send a middle-of-the-night tweet, no one is usually there to answer me, but that’s okay. I catch up on blog reading or Facebook posts. I make notes on my phone so I don’t forget to do things, like who to send thank you cards to, or what the hubs needs to buy on his next trip to the grocery store.

7. Remember that newborns are NOISY. And I’m not referring to their crying. I mean when they sleep, they fidget and snort and gurgle and squeak and squawk. It’s enough to give any first-time mom a heart attack because you think your baby is dying/drowning/choking/etc. As a second-timer and someone who prefers for her newborn to sleep in the same room for the first few weeks, I’ve had to retrain myself to block out those sleeping noises and only get up when he’s truly awake and ready to eat. If you plan on having your baby sleep in his/her own room from day 1, consider turning the volume DOWN on your monitor so you only hear him/her when he/she is crying – and not every grunt that comes out of their tiny mouths.

8. If the weather is nice enough, get out and WALK. This is good for both your physical and emotional health since walking is believed to help the recovery process post c-section and the fresh air is just good for helping you cope with that cabin fever feeling. I was not able to do this until about day 16 but that’s only because this stupid horrible winter decided to stick around longer than usual.

Hopefully this list is helpful for any first-timers out there. Anyone else have tips to share?

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Sam’s Birth Story

7:45 am: D starts stirring in his crib but he’s talking to himself so we ignore it.

8:10: Alarm goes off, and D REALLY wakes up. I’ve got 20 minutes to drink clear liquids before I’m cut off for who knows how long.

8:15: Hubs takes D downstairs for his morning milk and cartoons. I can already hear my FIL making coffee and watching TV.

8:20: Heave myself out of bed and downstairs to take my blood sugar, have some sugar-free jello and drink a big glass of water.

8:30: Chat with the family and check my phone for a few minutes. Make mental notes of what I still need to pack in my hospital bag. Cuddle D as much as he’ll let me because I know I’m going to miss him while in the hospital.

9am: shower, get dressed after debating what to wear for several minutes, makeup, blow dry hair, pack up makeup/daily beauty essentials.

9:45: pack iPad and chargers, fancy camera and new lens. Show FIL which sippy cups are best for D to use (straw cups – not tip/spout cups), and quickly clean up kitchen/bedroom.

10am: Head to hospital. Low gas indicator starts beeping. Of course. Stop to get gas.

10:30: Check in at maternity welcome center. Sign a bunch of papers and release forms. Wait for a nurse to come get me.

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11am: Taken to prep room. Change into this really weird, heavy paper gown. It’s a new type that has vents and a temperature controlled air hose that blows either cold or warm air on you, depending on your preference. It’s a bit bulky so I don’t really like it. Get hooked up to fetal monitors and an IV. Praise The Lord that she got it on the first stick.

11:30: First anesthesiologist comes by to answer questions.

11:45am: Second anesthesiologist comes in and starts prepping me. Hairnet on (should’ve brought a hair tie). I drink a little cup of anti-nausea medicine and it’s a bit like taking a shot of something. So gross.  He has me get into position for the stick but isn’t ready yet so I sit there for about 10 minutes, uncomfortable as hell and starting to have a panic attack. This was possibly the worst part of the whole experience. My mind was just going crazy! I honestly thought I might die that day.

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Nurse walks in and asks if a high school student can observe. My mind is too preoccupied to care so I just say yes before immediately regretting letting some HS kid watch my entire birth experience. Whatever.

12:10: Epidural is in. Did it hurt? Yes. But certainly tolerable. The worst part was having the anesthesiologist dig his finger in my spine to find the right spot to stick me.

The numbness starts setting in and now we’re just waiting for my OB. She’s usually early they say but today she was running late. The anesthesiologist uses a needle to prick my belly and asks me to let him know when I feel it. I feel nothing all the way up to the top of my belly so he says I’m ready. Somewhere in there a nurse comes in to insert my catheter. I barely notice.

12:20: OB shows up and things really start moving. I’m wheeled into the operating room. I’m trying really hard to focus but the meds are making things seem really fuzzy.
I see bright lights and a couple of people (nurses?) in scrubs. I’m instructed to fold my arms across my chest as they transfer me to the operating table. The curtain is raised and my OB says she’ll Ryan know when it’s time to look/snap pictures.

12:30: My OB and her resident doc/assistant (who also helped deliver D, oddly enough) are chit chatting so Ryan and I are just sort of looking at each other. I tell him to put on some music, so he plays some Bob Marley. (We played Bob Marley for D all the time as a newborn and it’s still D’s favorite music.) The music relaxes me a bit and everyone in the OR seems to approve of the music choice, particularly the anesthesiologist, seated behind my head now, as he starts chatting about vacations and Jamaica with Ryan.

12:45: Time seems to be creeping by slowly but the docs are just taking their time “cutting through the muscle” she says. I feel a little tugging but nothing significant or painful, thank God.

And then my OB says it’s time. Ryan stands to look over the curtain and I feel her push down really hard at the top of my belly.

A few moments later, I hear the most beautiful cry in the world and my eyes instantly fill with tears. The docs hold him over the curtain for me to get a good look at him before handing him off to a nurse to clean him up. It’s the first time I’ve been able to see his face since the little stinker would never show it in his ultrasounds. He’s still crying, so angry about being taken from his warm and cozy home. I can see him on the infant bed on my left and can’t stop looking at him. Ryan walks over to watch and it isn’t long before they wrap him up and hand him to him. Still crying. So unlike D who barely cried at all.

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1:15pm: Docs finish putting me back together and staple me shut. I still don’t feel a thing and even though I’ve been shaking a bit, it’s nothing compared to the shaking from the first time. And I can feel and move my arms this time so that’s awesome.

I’m wheeled back into the recovery room, but unlike last time, I’m wide awake and don’t pass out. Baby is still crying. The hubs and I exchange fearful looks and say how this one is going to be our high maintenance baby.

I hold him for a bit and we try nursing. He’s showing promise but it’s far too early for me to be producing anything yet so I consider it practicing.

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Nurse gives baby his first bath, right in the recovery room with me.

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A couple of hours pass before I’m transported to my long term recovery room. It’s smaller than last time and clearly hasn’t been remodeled yet. It’s fine, and private, but I’m already not looking forward to spending 4 days here. And that’s before realizing that half the buttons on the bed (for lights and bed adjustments) don’t work.

The first 24 hours post-op is a blur of nurses checking vitals and blood sugars. After not eating all day, my blood sugar dropped dangerously low a couple of times which got me two forced servings of juice each time. But I was more worried about baby’s blood sugar. Since I was gestational diabetic, they had to monitor his sugars more than usual (meaning more foot pricks), but he only had one low reading which corrected itself after his first real feeding. I wasn’t thrilled that he was already being given formula from a bottle, but if my choices were a bottle or the NICU with IVs and such, I just had to go with it.

We still practiced nursing about every 3 hours. This, plus the every 2 hours of checking mine and baby’s vitals (which never coincided) plus the administering of my pain meds and IV bag replacement basically meant that we did not sleep – AT ALL – that first night.

By day 2, I was really feeling the lack of sleep. Ryan stayed pretty busy running back and forth to the house to check on D. Having a toddler at home already definitely adds a layer of complication to everything. My FIL and his sister (Ryan’s aunt) stayed at our house to watch D, but Ryan tried his best to be home each morning before D woke up and every night to do his bath and put him to bed before coming back up to the hospital to sleep on the weird, folding couch. What a trooper.

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On day 2, my catheter was removed and I was forced to get out of bed and walk to the bathroom on my own. I still had my epidural line in, running Demerol pain medication through me, but the nurse went ahead and clamped off my IV so that was one less cord to worry about.

The hubs, my FIL and aunt-in-law brought D up to visit. I made sure to send the baby to the nursery so that when he first saw me, I wasn’t holding the baby. Instead, D and I cuddled in my hospital bed, watching videos on the iPad, while the adults went down to the nursery to see the baby. It wasn’t long before it was time to feed the baby again though so my FIL and aunt went to get something to eat while our little family of four hung out in the hospital room. Every time the baby would cry, D would run over to look at him and then hug my leg. Cutest thing ever.

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That afternoon, little baby S received his circumcision. Poor little guy. Just 24 hours old. At least it didn’t take long to heal and we were told we could stop using gauze and A&D ointment on it before we even left the hospital, since it looked so great.

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On the third day, Saturday, my epidural was removed and I was started on a low dose of Motrin and Vicodin. I could definitely tell a difference and some achiness started to set in. A few friends visited, which made the day just fly by. I still wasn’t able to get much sleep so when the OB on duty said I could leave on Sunday instead of Monday, if I wanted, I thought that sounded like a fantastic idea. So on Sunday, we finished up all of our paperwork for the birth certificate, safety waivers, and discharge papers, packed our things and checked out around 4pm.

On the way home, we had to stop by Walgreens to fill an order for my pain meds. While we waited, I talked the hubs into swinging by Dairy Queen for a little mini cookie dough and Oreo blizzard, despite the fact that it was barely 40 degrees and windy outside.

Once we got home, we chatted with my FIL and aunt-in-law for a few minutes before they headed out to spend the night at Ryan’s other aunt’s house. Then it was just the four of us. Our new little family unit.

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Now that I’m nearing the end of my second pregnancy, I feel like I have a lot of experience (practically 20 months worth) about what is and is not appropriate to say to a pregnant woman. Most of us have read (or even written) the articles and blog posts schooling people on this topic too. We’ve heard the complaints from friends and can’t believe some of the things that come out of the mouths of co-workers, acquaintances, and complete strangers.

But in my experience? The most offensive people are the ones closest to me. My family and my husband’s family. And it’s even more infuriating because when it’s family, I CAN’T DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT. With strangers, I could come back with a snarky comment, ignore them, or just flat out lie to them to get them to shutup. “Are you sure there aren’t two in there?” Actually, there’s three.

But with family? You can’t lie. And depending on who it is, you also can’t yell at them for fear of coming off as the crazy, hormonal pregnant lady that’s overreacting. And sometimes you’re even more pressured to share otherwise-private and privileged information, which then opens the gates to even more unwanted commentary.

Here’s just a sampling of some of the things that have been said to me by our relatives:

“You’re pregnant? Oh no…”

“You’re pregnant AGAIN?  Oh no… Well, I just hope this one is a girl.”

“It’s a boy? Aw I really wanted a girl!!”

“The next one better be a girl!”

“You should name him <insert a bunch of horrible names here>”

“What will his name be? Oh. I had an uncle with that name and he was nuttier than a fruitcake.”

“What will his name be? Well why would you name him that when neither of those names are family names?”

But the one thing that’s ruffled my feathers more than anything else happened today when a well-meaning relative posted a comment on my Facebook page, using my future son’s name. As in “Can’t wait for <NAME>’s arrival! Hope you’re feeling okay!”

Sounds harmless, right? But we haven’t announced his name yet and I have zero plans of doing so until he’s born.

If you’re privileged enough to know the name ahead of time, don’t go posting it on social media for everyone to see when it hasn’t been announced to the whole friggin’ world yet. Just because I told you (or another relative told you) doesn’t mean we’ve shared it with everyone.

I immediately deleted the comment. And now I know why people keep the name a secret until he/she is born.

What’s the most offensive/annoying thing someone has said to you while pregnant?

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Five on Friday

ONE: My latest ultrasound showed good news and bad news. Good news: my fluid levels have gone back up so I’m far from the danger zone at the moment. Bad news: This baby is huge. I’m technically 36w 5days and he’s already measuring 8lbs. My current c-section is scheduled for two weeks from yesterday, which means this baby will still be about 9lbs at delivery (and I’m delivering almost two weeks before my real due date)! Part of it is just that I make big babies, but part of it is also due to the gestational diabetes and the fact that even with the diet changes and insulin shots, shit just isn’t working. In just one month, this baby went from 60th percentile in size to 88th percentile. And his belly is bigger than that, which is a sure sign of a gestational diabetic baby. This is obviously very frustrating for me so please pray that this baby doesn’t end up in the NICU like D did.

TWO: The nursery is about 95% done. We still have one more piece of artwork to hang on the wall so as soon as that’s done, I’ll post photos. I posted a sneak peek on IG the other day and I’m really pleased with how it’s all coming together.

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THREE: Since we’ve essentially robbed D’s room of all things baby and moved them into the nursery, we’ve had to update his room to a big boy room. I’d say we’re about 50-60% done with the updates, but the hubs is actually DIYing a few things, so it’s taking a bit longer for his vision to come together. Two sneak peek pictures of the process include a lamp and some wall art of his name.

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FOUR: So the fear of having two under two is starting to settle in. For one, I’m nervous about breastfeeding. Since it didn’t work for me before and I ended up pumping for 7 months, I REALLY want nursing to work this time. Part of that will depend on if this baby ends up in the NICU for a few days and also when my milk comes in. Since I’m having a c-section a couple of weeks early, I have no idea if my body will cooperate or not, or if it’s going to take even longer for my milk to come in. (Last time, it didn’t come in until day 5.) I’m nervous about the actual c-section and my recovery. I’m hopeful that since I won’t be laboring for 15 hours before my c-section that my recovery will be easier, but I just don’t know. It’s still major abdominal surgery. And I’m nervous about how D will react to the new baby. He’s too young to understand us when we try to explain it to him that mommy has a baby in her belly and that he’s going to have a little baby brother soon. And while he CAN be super sweet and affectionate at times, he also has a mean streak and has shown zero interest in other kids/babies. I’m sure it’ll all work itself out and that one day they’ll be the best of friends, but right now I’m nervous.

FIVE: Speaking of fear, I was contacted earlier this week by a man named Cameron, husband of a Mesothelioma survivor. Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that affects the lungs and is caused by exposure to asbestos. Most people diagnosed with Mesothelioma die within two years, but fortunately for Cameron, his wife Heather, and their little girl Lily, Heather has been cancer-free for 8 years now after a successful surgery to remove her left lung. They now celebrate that day every February 2 and call it LungLeavin’ Day.

Here’s what Cameron has to say about LungLeavin’Day: “The purpose of LungLeavin’ Day is to encourage others to face their fears!  Each year, we gather around a fire in our backyard with our friends and family, write our biggest fears on a plate and smash them into the fire.  We celebrate for those who are no longer with us, for those who continue to fight, for those who are currently going through a tough time in their life, and most importantly, we celebrate life! This year, we asked bloggers to take part and spread the word about LungLeavin’ Day.  We created an interactive page mesothelioma.com/heather/lungleavinday that tells the full story of our special day.”

Pretty cool, huh? What a great way to celebrate life and take back control from your fears. Please check out the site if you get a chance. And congrats to the Von St. James family!!

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30 Weeks – Bumpdate

How Big is Baby:  At last week’s ultrasound, the tech estimated 3lbs 7oz, which puts baby boy in the 60th percentile for size at the moment.

Big Developments: BabyCenter just says his eyesight is improving. Nothing substantial. I’ve noticed almost daily hiccups though. Just like his brother.
Baby developments aside, we’ve finally started tackling the disaster that is our house. We took a car load of stuff to Goodwill on Saturday and got rid of two big bags of trash. We still need to do some organizing in the basement to make room for some of the stuff from the office. Then we can work on cleaning out the office entirely. Hoping to make more progress this weekend.
Also, the hubs felt the baby move for the first time this week! Pretty sure this happened way earlier the first time around, but as second-timers, having him feel the baby move hasn’t been a huge deal. But last night baby boy was having a dance party crazy enough that you could watch it from the outside. Seeing my belly move like that was a little freaky the first time, but the second time, it’s really quite cool.
Food Cravings:  Well, considering I have to stick to a low-carb diet now, my biggest cravings have to do with sugar. I’d love nothing more than to have a giant, warm, chocolate chip cookie and chase it with a Coke. Aside from that, I’ve had cravings for sushi lately. Fortunately, cooked sushi exists, so I satisfied this craving on Saturday AND Sunday. So good! And maybe I’m just thirsty but I could drink an entire gallon of milk in a day, if I was allowed. Sadly, milk has carbs.
Food Aversions:  Still want nothing to do with fast food.
Other Symptoms: I’ve been feeling increased pressure deep in my pelvic area for quite awhile now, particularly at night while sleeping. This baby is getting HEAVY. And big, because at times I’ve felt like he’s up near my lungs, making it harder to breathe. All typical stuff though. I’ve noticed some slight swelling in my ankles at night, but nothing like last time (yet) so I’m trying to get up and walk around during the day to avoid it.
Sleep:  Varies. Some nights I’ll be up past 11pm and not really feel all that tired. Other nights I’m passing out on the couch at 9:30pm. I get up to pee about 4 times per night, on average, and this massive belly is making it harder to flip from side to side. We’ve also had a few nights of co-sleeping with D, so that hasn’t helped matters much. Must fix this before the baby arrives.
Maternity Clothes:  Nothing new. I thought about buying one more pair of full panel maternity jeans but I may just hold off. I’ve only got 9 weeks left.
Speaking of maternity clothes, I was at Target last night with my boys, all bundled up in my maternity peacoat. A woman with two littles stopped me in the shoe aisle and asked, “How far apart will they be?” It caught me off guard since I haven’t really had any strangers comment on my pregnancy this time around. And I was fully covered in a coat. I told the hubs I thought it was a little risky for her to ask that, not that I was offended or anything, but then he reminded me that I’m more than just showing. I’m huge. (Thanks honey!) So we’re at that stage now. I should expect more stranger comments over these next 9 weeks.
What I’m Looking Forward To:  SPRING! (Because the first day of spring is my due date.) It’s funny how the first time around, I still had baby showers to look forward to. This time, I have almost everything I need, including plenty of clothes, so there really isn’t much else to get excited about. I’ll be glad when the nursery is done, but I’m definitely not looking forward to the process.
Thoughts: I’m going to use this for a gestational diabetes update, for anyone who cares. So far, the diet has been manageable. I’m not starving, and I’ve found a low-sugar ice cream made with coconut milk that fits within my diet plan, so I’m not completely deprived of sweets. Still, changing my diet alone wasn’t enough and my fasting numbers were still too high, so I had to start taking Glyburide. Just one pill at night. My fasting numbers dropped a little, but still not enough, so on Monday the nurse called to tell me to up my dosage to two pills at night. So far, that seems to be working, though we’re only a couple of days in and my body’s need for insulin will only continue to increase as my pregnancy progresses, which means I could still end up taking insulin shots before this pregnancy is over. Hoping that’s not the case, but it’s still a strong possibility.
I’m still learning what foods affect my sugar levels, and it’s a trial-and-error process. If I eat too much at one time, even if all of the foods are low-carb or no-carb, my levels will be high. So learning portion control and eating smaller meals/snacks throughout the day has worked best, though it’s the hardest to do. Beans, it turns out, also keep my levels high for longer stretches of time. And if I don’t get at least 20 minutes of walking in a day, I can see it in my numbers. You would think walking for 20-30 minutes a day wouldn’t be so difficult, but when you sit at a desk all day, and it’s WINTER, and you have to make dinner and take care of a toddler at night, it’s much harder than it seems. So I’ve been making excuses to go to the store in the evenings or to walk to the post-office during work hours to try and fit it all in. Some days it just doesn’t happen though.
Some friends on Twitter asked for a belly pic. If you haven’t noticed, I’m REALLY BAD at taking regular belly pics, but I’m not one to disappoint my friends so here you go.

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28 Weeks – Bumpdate

How Big is Baby:  About 2.25 lbs – or the size of an eggplant.

Big Developments: Baby boy can now blink, has eyelashes, and may be able to sense light in the womb.
Food Cravings:  Despite my aversion to all things Asian food, I had a serious craving for Thai food at the beginning of the weekend. Fortunately we have good friends that live near a decent Thai place and they met up with us for dinner on Saturday night. I may have eaten my share of TUMS later that night, but it was nice to satisfy the craving.
Food Aversions:  Fast food. I’ve had to eat it a few times while traveling for the holidays and I just felt like poo afterwards. So glad to be home and can’t wait to get back on a meal planning schedule.
Other Symptoms: Surprisingly, I still feel really good. I’ve had moments where I feel like my feet or hands are swelling but when I look down, it’s nothing. I know this will likely change later in January, but I’m so happy that I traveled as well as I did.
The bad news is that I failed my one-hour glucose test. The cutoff is 140 and my results were 174. YIKES. The nurse told me “it could’ve been worse” and asked if I wanted to do the three-hour test, to which I said no. I was deemed “borderline” gestational diabetic after my three-hour test when I was pregnant with D, and yet he still ended up in the NICU for insulin issues because I didn’t monitor my carb intake as seriously as I should have. In my defense, I had no idea what the risks were for even just being “borderline” gestational diabetic, so this time I’m going all out by taking a 3 hour class, meeting with a nutritionist, and regularly seeing fetal monitoring specialists. This also means I’ll be given a glucose meter and will need to test my blood a few times each day. And most importantly, I’ll have to change my diet. That part is going to suck most of all because my sugar and carb cravings are INTENSE. I already have terrible willpower and self-control so I fully expect to be a cranky, miserable mess these last couple of months. If anyone out there has experience with gestational diabetes and/or would like to recommend some delicious low-carb meal ideas, I’m all ears.
Sleep:  Hard to say. I’ve slept in 6 different beds over a two week period with a fidgety 18 month old. Yes, we had to co-sleep while we were out of town. When we had access to a king-size bed it was pretty great. But in a Queen it’s been tough. As expected, he now refuses to sleep in his crib at home so we’re slowly transitioning him back to his crib. And by slowly, I mean we haven’t started yet.
Maternity Clothes:  I wore a lot of maternity dresses in Costa Rica, most of which were either borrowed or left over from my first pregnancy. Because we’re trying to recover financially from the trip/holidays, I’m resisting the urge to buy anything else right now, though I may need to cave and buy one more pair of maternity jeans before March gets here.
What I’m Looking Forward To:  Purging/decluttering the house. We’re turning the office into a second nursery, which means we need to turn the guest bedroom into a multi-functional bedroom/office, which means we need to get rid of a lot of crap before we can buy another crib. The hubs didn’t want to start on this until after the holidays and bam, here we are, almost January. It’s time and I’m so ready to get rid of stuff. Look out, Goodwill!!
Thoughts: Crazy to think that in just 11 weeks we’ll have a new baby. I’m two weeks away from single digits! At the same time, I’m a bit overwhelmed with all the stuff I’d like to get done as well as now needing to plan out healthier meals, limit my carb intake, and monitor my blood sugar. I also need to fit in a weekend trip to visit my grandma before I get too far along and can’t travel anymore. And that’s just a fraction of what’s weighing on my mind lately. Just trying to take it one day at a time.

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