Thursday, June 26, 2008

32 week ultrasound

Today I had a 32 week ultrasound with my neonatologist from University of Chicago and hopefully this will be the last time I visit his office!
The baby looks great and is continuing to grow bigger and bigger. I am 31 + weeks and the baby is measuring 34 to 35 weeks with a weight of 5 lbs!!! Big baby! But I always measure big. Remember, Olivia was predicted to be 10 pounds and she came out all of 7 pounds and 15 ounces! Anyway, everything appears to be working properly, but of course we have to wait on the official report from the Dr.
The baby is starting to mimic breathing (fetal respiration's) and it was so cute to watch his/her little abdomen rise and fall just like it was taking breaths! There appears to be a lot of hair on his/her head - this explains the horrible heartburn I have been having lately!
Brian worked from home today so he could go - mostly to try to take a peak and see if he could determine the gender of the baby. He was very quiet during the ultrasound - I couldn't see his face, but I imagine it was glued to the screen! As I'm wiping what feels like a gallon of gel off of my stomach the technician looks at Olivia and says, "That's so cool that she's going to have a sister."
me: She is?!?!
tech: didn't you say 'she'
me: no, we don't know what it is.
tech: oh, well I didn't look, I just thought you said 'she' and my last patient was having a girl - I promise you I didn't even look today!

The look on Brian's face was priceless! I'm sure mine was too - I was a bit shocked and kind of pissed when she said that - I thought, here we've come this far and I REALLY don't want to know and now she's spoiled it! So either she covered it up really well or she really was mistaken. As we're leaving, Brian says, now I'm really confused because I thought I saw boy parts!
So, we still don't know :-P and I couldn't be happier! I find it hard to believe that Brian saw boy parts when he has been known to confuse the head and stomach and he didn't know she was measuring my cervix even after she typed "cx" on the screen and she was all the way down by my va-jay-jay. But, that's what he thinks, so I'll just let him keep thinking that!
Off to another appointment :-)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Mommy boot camp must begin

Here is a list of things we have done over the last two weeks:
Sibling class, 5 visits to the dr office, 2 dance classes, out of town company on two separate occasions, a day at the water park, a weekend in Indianapolis, Father's day, swimming, dance portraits, dance dress rehearsal, 2 days of dance recitals, and for Olivia a 2 night sleepover at her memaw and papaw's house in Indy where she did lots of swimming, visiting with family, playing with cousins and friends, ending in Lafayette with a day in the park, a train ride and the zoo. Not to mention she hasn't had a good nap in the past 2 weeks nor has she gone to bed at her normal bed time or slept in with the exception of one day!
She is sleep deprived and it is showing! If I didn't know better there are some days I would swear that she has ADHD - she is bouncing off the walls and her mouth doesn't shut up - she just doesn't know what to do with herself, I think that she goes and goes and goes (just like the energizer bunny) for fear that if she stops she might actually fall asleep - she's just been out of mind exhausted! And speaking of her mouth - wow it's gotten bad. If she isn't whining about something, she's crying, if she's not demanding, she's down right hateful! For instance, at my mom's house she was put in time out for continuing to throw a baby doll after she was repeatedly told not too. When my mom got in her face to talk to her, Olivia proceeded to say, "Memaw, I hate your eyebrows." WHAT?!?!?! Where does such evilness come from? Yesterday Olivia proceeded to use my shirt as a towel so I flicked water at her and I couldn't believe what came out of her mouth..."I don't even love you anymore." If I didn't know better I would think she was possessed, but in fact it all comes from a lack of sleep, routine and schedule. Kids need all three! We aren't so much scheduled and on a routine that we can't ever deviate from it, but kids need this kind of structure and when they don't get it - boy does it show!
So, mommy boot camp is ready to begin. We aren't doing anything today! It is 1pm and we are still in our jammies and hanging out inside the house - we're on lock-down! She will be going down for a nap in 30 to 45 minutes and I will be doing the same :-) She has watched a lot of tv today and I don't even care - she's relaxing and we're just having a low-key day! Tomorrow dad is "working" from home and we have a couple things to get done - an ultrasound in the morning with the Dr from U of C and a NST in the afternoon, but there will be a nap in between and nothing else is planned for the day. On Friday, we will be enjoying a girly day in the Chicago as we go to American Girl Place with Leenie and Abbey, but we will either be catching a nap or going to bed early.
Along with all of this, the bottle of hot sauce has made an appearance and I am ready to use it if her mouth gets out of hand! I will be visiting Taco Bell for some packages to take with us to Chicago if needed.
AND there is nothing on the calendar for this weekend and the only thing on the calendar for next week is a Dr appointment, an NST and another ultrasound...until the 3 day 4th of July weekend. I am hoping to be back on a schedule by the 4th and hopefully have her back into shape!
WOW, summers can get busy! It's times like this that I miss the snowed in days of winter! Just for a minute though ;-) Then I slap myself and come back to my senses! I realize that I need to take advantage of the good weather and the ability to get out and do all the things we get to do - it will only be a couple short months until the new little miracle arrives and we won't be able to do as much...and then WINTER will be right behind that - YIKES!!!

Hope you are having a wonderful summer and enjoying time with family and friends :-)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

While the princess is away, mom will play...

or nest!

Olivia went to Indy with my parents on Sunday to spend a couple nights. You would think that I would have spent the time resting and watching my favorite tv shows that I never get to watch when Olivia is home, but instead I was nesting! I decided to tackle the nursery! This is what it looked like before.

The closet and baby bed were so full of Olivia's old clothes that we didn't have room for anything for the new baby. I bought some space bags and this is what it looks like now!

Now we just need to paint :-) We're having a hard time agreeing on what to do with the nursery. We decided I would pick out the girl bedding and Brian would pick out the boy bedding - we would buy the crib sheet for each and paint the nursery a shade of blue that would match both...simple right? Well, Brian doesn't like any of the Pottery Barn bedding I had picked out with the same color of blue that was in all the girl bedding I picked out. Instead he picked out something else with a dark blue and he only wants to paint the bottom half of the walls blue - NOT AT ALL WHAT I HAD IN MIND!!! So, who knows what we'll do now. Brian wants to wait until the baby is here - actually he wants me to just take a peak at one of the ultrasounds I have scheduled every week until the baby is born, but that isn't going to happen. So, it looks as if the nursery is just going to stay the way it is until the baby has arrived :-( We'll go ahead and pick out bedding for both a boy and a girl and pick paint and everything else so that when the baby gets here we'll be ready to HIRE someone to come in and paint the room - we're not even going to attempt to say that this is something WE will do with a newborn and a 3 year old in the house!! The baby will be subject to paint fumes, but this is what daddy wants ;-) Just kidding - just trying to throw some guilt in there so that I can get the nursery done now!!

I've enjoyed the quiet time I've had for the past couple of days, but I must admit that I do miss my little princess. I didn't miss being woken up with her "cock-a-doodle-doo" that she yells in my face every morning, but instead I was awoken by some stupid airplane doing stunts over our neighborhood! I missed her the most at night when I'd climb the stairs to go to bed and her door would be wide open and her room would be empty. I got a little lonely mid-day yesterday when I had no company all day, but it was a breeze going through the grocery store all by myself! It was a nice break, but I'll be glad to have her back home today.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Little Ballet Star

Olivia had her first dance recital this weekend and I'm exhausted. Thursday was the dress rehearsal which lasted several hours and the recital was Friday and Saturday. We spent several hours each day doing hair and make-up and getting her dressed and several hours standing around waiting for her 2 minute dance...but it was all worth it! She made such a beautiful little ballet star! She did an incredible job all three nights - I was afraid she would get up there and just freeze and not do anything, but that wasn't so! She did the entire routine just like she has been practicing for months. At the end of Act I she had to go out on stage with all the dancers in Act I (there were 28 dances in Act I so there were alot of kids on stage) and take a bow. Her little group was the last preschool group to come on stage in the front row and only the first 2 or 3 girls in her line were able to get out on the stage past the curtain...unfortunately that didn't stop Olivia - she busted her way through pushing aside these little girls so she could get onto the stage, then she stands there, give her best smile and takes a bow! It was hilarious - I wish I had that on film! I did videotape her during the dress rehearsal (the only time we were allowed to videotape) but I sent the DVD home with my parents before downloading it on the computer so for now all I have to share are pictures. I'll put the video on my blog when I get it back later this week. For now, enjoy some pics!

Yes, she actually sits still and lets me put all of these rollers in her hair!!
She discovered Libby Lou and fairy dust - after making the purchase she said to me, "mom, what more could a girl want?" Oh, honey - let me give you the list!!
She loved when we would take the curlers out and her hair would spring back when she pulled on it.

She looks like a baby doll with her hair like this

Against my better judgement we applied make-up - she was supposed to have dark eye shadow, dark blush, dark lipstick and mascara - we settled for a lite purple eye shadow, light blush and pink lipstick...NO mascara - this isn't a miss America pageant!! She is only 3 - it was bad enough that they had to wear anything!

The following are pictures we had taken at "Portrait Innovations" by the mall - if you live in the area I highly recommend trying them out - we had great success - much better than the last couple of trips to "picture people" where they have screwed up our pics on several occasions!!

And That's our little ballet star!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Why didn't I think of this sooner?

Yesterday was spent cleaning my house from when my niece and nephew was here and in preparation for my parents and Brian's parents to visit this weekend for Olivia's recital. Now I know what's it's like to have 3 kids - I never thought you could go through that many towels and wash clothes in 3 days!! Grass, dirt and sand must stick more to bigger kids than it does to smaller ones. And play dough is much messier when there's three sets of hands spreading it around!
Olivia likes to "help" me when I clean - it usually ends up being harder for me, but I figure this is the only way she's going to learn. So as I'm sweeping the kitchen, she's spreading the dirt back out in her attempt to sweep :-)
The time came for me to take a little break and enjoy some coffee so I sat down on the couch. The living room floor was littered with toys. I usually find it easier to just pick them up myself instead of constantly nagging Olivia to pick up - how old are they when you can say "go clean your room." and they actually do it instead of getting interrupted by the first toy they pick up? But I figured I would be sitting for a few minutes and could stay on top of her about picking stuff up. I first said, "Olivia will you pick up ____?" and like usual, it went in one ear and out the other. So then I say, "we're going to play a game. I'm going to tell you which item you have to pick up, then you're going to say, 'mother may I?' and I will say, 'yes you may' and then you can pick it up and put it in the toy box. Remember that you can't pick it up until you ask, 'Mother may I?' and I answer with, 'yes you may' okay?"
Olivia: OKAY, LET'S PLAY!!!
me: Olivia pick up _____
Olivia: Mother may I?
me: Yes you may
me: Olivia pick up _____
Olivia: Mother may I?
me: Yes you may
me: Olivia pick up _____
Olivia: Mother may I?
me: Yes you may
This continued until EVERY toy had been picked up! It worked beautifully! I couldn't believe my eyes - why didn't I think of this sooner?!?!?!
Now, Brian was "working" from home yesterday and he's sitting on the couch looking at me like I had three heads. I was thinking - Brian thinks I'm a genius! He can't believe that I came up with this awesome "game" and that it's actually working. He must think that I'm the most incredible smart mother ever.....and then he says to me, "that's awful, I can't believe you are making her say, 'mother may I?' - that's just horrible." HE HAD NO IDEA WHAT THE GAME "MOTHER MAY I?" WAS!!!!! He just thought I was some slave driver making Olivia ask, 'mother may I?' hahahaha!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

anniversaries and dates

When you've suffered a loss it seems as though you are constantly thinking "anniversaries" and "dates"...they're just numbers, but for me at least, I can easily get consumed by them! This pregnancy has been filled with a lot of anxieties and worries as well as a lot of hurdles to cross. We made it past the 5 week mark of my second miscarriage. Then we made it past the 10 week mark of my first miscarriage. We got past the 13 week/1st trimester hurdle. We also survived the 20 week ultrasound and the 24 week blood glucose test and so far, everything is going along great! As I am well aware of, this can change in the blink of an eye, which is why I sometimes feel like I am driving myself crazy with kick counts and NSTs.
Now we are approaching yet another anniversary! On July 22, 2006 we found out Jesse had died and I was 30 weeks and 3 days along in my pregnancy. On July 25, 2006 Jesse was born and I was 30 weeks and 6 days. Right now, I am currently 30 weeks and 1 day - so this next week is going to be filled with a lot of anxiety...and a lot of prayers - I plan to be on my knees a lot this week praying that God continues to breath life into the baby he formed inside my body 30 weeks ago.
I find that I do better when things are busy and I don't have time to dwell on anniversaries and dates and this week just so happens to be the busiest week of my summer! We had my niece and nephew up for a few days last week. Then we spent the weekend in Indianapolis for Father's Day. On Monday Olivia had dance class. After dance we went to the park with some of the girls in her dance class. After that, we took the train into Chicago and met dad for dinner and hung out in Millennium park until way after Olivia's bed time. Today we had pictures for Olivia's dance recital so I spent the morning putting her hair in curlers and getting her all dolled up for that and then in an hour I have another NST and a Dr appointment. Tomorrow is a slow day, but Thursday Olivia has dress rehearsal for her dance recital. Then on Friday, Olivia will have her first dance recital. On Saturday, both sets of Olivia's grandparents will be coming up from Indy to visit and see her at her dance recital on Saturday night. They will all stay the night and then Olivia will go home with my parents on Sunday to spend a couple of nights while Brian and I have a couple of nights to ourselves. We are planning dinner in the city for one of the nights and maybe we'll catch a movie on another night.
I have been dreading the business of this week, but now that I realize that it falls during the same time that I NEED it to be the busiest because of the numbers stuck in my head, I am once again amazed by God's perfect plan! He has been planning this week and packing it full of stuff because He knows that's what I need! It's comforting to know that He's got it all figured out for me - I know that no matter what happens in the future, it's all God's plan and it's perfect in every way - He works out all the details and everything always falls into place.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Birth plan

It's that time again to come up with a birth plan. MWAAA-HA-HAAAA!
I find this hysterical actually! If it was up to me, I would not be putting together a birth plan, but because I am having a doula, she likes for us to have one. She came to our house last week and we went over the birth plan. We basically have to outline EVERYTHING we would want under ideal circumstances. She takes it, studies it, memorizes it and when the time comes she is our voice. She tries her best to make sure that everything gets done that is on the list. For instance...we like to wait on the mandatory eye drops until we have had a chance to hold the baby and I nurse - usually for that first hour when the baby is wide awake and trying to figure out what in the hell just happened. Then they tend to poop out and take a nice long nap. So, it's usually pretty routine for the nurses wipe baby off, check the heart rate....and then put the eye drops in. That's whey my doula says, "hey Brian, looks like they're getting ready to put the eye drops in, make sure you tell them to hold off!"
This is just one thing out of many that are on our two-page birth plan. Why do I find this hysterical? Come on now - I've had two birthplans and two births and neither one turned out anything like I had "planned". I don't recall my birthplan for Olivia looking something like this...
*have nurse pressure me into an epidural
*have nurse break her finger and have to go to the ER right when the anesthesiologist is ready to administer the epidural, leaving us with no nurse!
*get a moron for an anesthesiologist who proceeds to play darts with my spine and the needle, poking me about a dozen times before getting it right
*only make the epidural work on half of my body
*when the baby's heart rate drops during a contraction, have the neonatal nurse freak out and start shaving my stomach saying, "we're going to need to do a c-section"
*when the Dr arrives and talks to the nurse have her come in and tell me that they have to keep the pitocin off and that I won't progress without it. Have her explain to me that I'll probably labor all night without any progress and that I'll still end up with a c-section because the last ultrasound revealed that my baby was going to be around 10 pounds or that I could go ahead and have the c-section and have my baby in 30 minutes, bypassing all the unnecessary labor that would get me nowhere!
*no matter how much epidural they pump me with I want to still feel EVERYTHING!!
*I want my Dr and the other Dr helping her get into an in depth conversation about a movie they saw and not explain ANYTHING to me, so that I just lay there freaking out about all this tugging, stretching, pulling and pain that I feel
*When I begin to freak out from the pain have the anesthesiologist ask, "should I take her out?"

No, I didn't really have that kind of plan, but that's pretty much what happened. But the end result was a beautiful, healthy little girl that is the most perfect thing on earth...weighing in at 7 pound 15 ounces!

Now, I must say that the labor with Jesse went much better - other than the fact that the induction took 52 hours on pitocin because I was only 30 weeks and my cervix was no where close to being "ripe". I am so happy that I was successful at a VBAC and that I could prove to myself that I could indeed do it! My doula, husband and all the other support that I had in my room was awesome and I can honestly say that it was a good experience, but my baby had already grew his wings before he was born and I walked out of the hospital the next day with empty arms.

So, I've had 1 horrible birth experience with a wonderful outcome and 1 wonderful birth experience with a horrible outcome - this time I want the birth experience and the outcome to be WONDERFUL and I am trusting that God will make this happen!

So, when my doula asked me to have my birth plan ready for her home visit, this is the birth plan I wanted to present her with...
*short, uneventful, pain free, natural labor
*no 6 inch gash across lower tummy
*beautiful, healthy baby to take home with us

Will it happen? Only God knows! I just have to put my faith and trust in Him that no matter what happens, it's all a part of His plan and that His plan is perfect. There's no plan in the world that is more perfect than His. I wrote out my birth plan for my doula knowing that it's pretty much a big joke! I have no control nor does Brian or even my doula. God is the one in control and I'm just praying for a healthy baby and a healthy me - all in all, nothing else matters!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Can you hear fetal heartones with a car charger?

Apparently so! Olivia was playing miss Sheryl (my midwife) yesterday with her dolls. She got out the car charger from her DVD player and used a baby blanket as the little sheet that they tuck in your pants. I'm surprised she didn't ask for some gel to lube up their tummies. What you can't see is the book she set up that was the "monitor" for when she was "looking" at the baby inside her dolls tummies.

Later she switched to the ear buds from her "IPOD".

Can you tell she goes to a lot of appointments with me? And actually she stays with Leenie for a lot of my appointments.

BTW my appointment and NST went well today. On the NST, they wait for the baby to have approximately 10 movements. This usually takes between 15 minutes and 30 minutes depending on how the baby cooperates. So they usually hook me up and come back in about 15 minutes to see how things are going. If the baby hasn't moved 10 times in 15 minutes then they will buzz the baby to get it to wake up. The nurse came in after 15 minutes and the baby had already moved 27 times!! Overachiever!! The nurse is for a doctor in the office so I have never had any interaction with her. She asks me how far along I am and when I say 28 weeks she didn't really believe me - she said, "you're only 28 weeks and you're getting a NST like this?!?!" She then followed up with, "what's the reason we are doing this, this is an incredible NST. I don't see any reason for concern!" She quickly shut up when I explained that I had an unexplained 30 week stillborn. I am so thankful that I have an active baby - it has been very reassuring, but at the same time, if I go a few hours without a lot of movement (which can be completely normal) I begin to freak out. So the heartrate was in the high 120's/low 130's when inactive (which didn't happen much) and in the 150's when active (most of the time).