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Monday, February 28, 2011

Sex Reveal

I promised to let you all know if it was a boy or a girl, didn't I? Especially if someone bribed me?

Well no one bribed me, so you're lucky I'm telling you anyway.

I'll spare you the gratuitous ultrasound picture of the baby's junk or lack thereof and just tell you...


Thursday, February 24, 2011

What's that? Oh, nothing, I'm just HALFWAY THROUGH.

Halfway through a pregnancy. Now slightly over halfway thorough. Holy shit. Holy crap. Is this really going to happen?

I hope so because I have a closet full of shit that isn't going anywhere. Baby better come use it!

Here are some pics from our anatomy scan today. Everything looked great, although the kid does have some mutant-ly long arms, apparently. The doctor didn't say anything about it, but she left the screen up as I was getting dressed and there's a little chart that says the averages for everything.

See, mutant-ly long arms:

And small head. I can only assume the baby was trying to make it easier on me to deliver, which is very nice, but since I'm having a c-section it can grow that head as big and smart as it wants to. Methinks it's time to break out some Nietzsche or James Joyce or some shit.

Why have I started cussing in my blog more lately?  Maybe it's an extinction burst, trying to get it all out before the small child arrives.

Anyway. Small head, big arms. Maybe a monkey.

The 3D picture doesn't do much to solve the monkey versus baby debate. Whatever it is, it's pretty damn cute.

Definitely cute, though, right? Or am I already one of those moms that can't see that they have an ugly kid?


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I thought the second trimester was supposed to FLY by, but it's not. At all. It's dragging. I just want to get to viability at 24 weeks and then 28 and 32 and 36 weeks (all milestones when babies born at that gestational age do better by leaps and bounds than the previous milestone) and then full term and then have a BABY. Alive. In my arms. That I can then bring home and play dress-up with. Baby clothes are cute!*

*Not the only reason I want a baby. I swear. I also want it to do dishes. And clean up dog poop. And cuddle.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Er, I'm not. I never win ANYTHING. But I'm giving it a go. You know how we (haha, okay, *I*) decided to cloth diaper? The cloth diaper community loves itself a giveaway. There's a new one every day. I enter all the time. And I never win.


But there's a really great giveaway at KellyWels.com that would be awesome to win. AWESOME I TELL YOU.

It's winning 18 bumGenius 4.0 diapers. Which are really awesome. Not that I've tried it on a poopy butt yet, but every review I've ever seen loves them and I have one and it looks great on the teddy bear I've been using as a baby stand in when seeing how the diapers work. It's also winning a bumGenius diaper sprayer. And it's also winning a bumGenius pail liner. See, I wasn't lying even a little bit when I said it was awesome. It's one of the biggest giveaways I've seen. So if you're interested in entering, you can do so by clicking here. (I don't encourage it because I don't want you to compete with me, but in the interest of sharing and fairness and all that other mommy crap I suppose you can. SIGH. But only if you give me a diaper if you win.)

You'll see if you enter that you get 20 extra entries by blogging. Again, I never do that on any of the giveaways because I never win anyway, so I hate cluttering up REALLY IMPORTANT stuff like BABY PICTURES and POOP TALK with sweepstakes information, but winning this would validate me in ways I've never been validated before. Or something.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Accessorizing Already

The 18 week ultrasound was actually pretty lame-o, which is dumb to complain about since most people only get two scans during their entire pregnancy, and I have that many most months.  We just got a quick peek at the heart and spine, then the tech measured the amniotic fluid levels. The baby was facing my spine, so none of the views were really that great.  However, the tech did manage to capture this:

Do you see it?  No, not the actually pretty creepy entirely visible skull.  Still not there? Let me illustrate.

Is my child already accessorizing in the womb?? A drag queen or maybe prince of some small country if a boy, obviously, or a princess if a girl. Which would suck for me since I'm decidedly non-princess-y. And non-pink-y. And non-glitter-y. Maybe we can bond over the Princess Bride, though...princess for her, sword fights and ROUSes for me. I hope I get to choose the country that they are royalty of...I choose somewhere warm. With a beach. And water. And palm trees. And tropical frozen fruit drinks served by shirtless bronzed gods.

Also evident were feet. Two of them, though we just got a shot of one. If you compare this to the one from a couple weeks ago it's insane how much this child has grown just since then.

Next check is on Wednesday, then again next Thursday for the big anatomy scan. After that we'll let the genitalia out of the bag! Thank god, because I keep accidentally slipping with gendered pronouns and it's now the worst kept secret since [insert celebrity/singer] being gay.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

18w6d Milestone

Hot damn, made it past the first loss milestone.  Rock on, Rainbow baby. Rock on, transabdominal cerclage.  Next up: 19w4d, when I'll be more pregnant than I ever have been.  Eeek.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Warning: Naked Gross Belly Pics

I warned you. Although I guess since they're right here you didn't really have a choice to look away. But now I'm giving you the chance to look away before you REALLY look at them closely.

18 weeks with Rainbow Baby on the left; 18 weeks with Caleb on the right (or if you have your aspect ratio set up all screwy and dumb like some people I know, the new one will be on top and Caleb will be on bottom). I think on both of these I was closer to 18.5 weeks but close enough.

Huh. Am I actually smaller this time?? I thought I was much bigger.  This must be how people have ten kids. They forget so quickly.  For comparison, here's where I started. Actually this is at 6 weeks so here's where I started plus two weeks of bloating. Bloat is a serious thing. You should see my 12 week pictures; they're bigger than my 16 week ones.  

Goodbye forever, old body. I should have appreciated you while I had you and had a few more crazy times.  I never did have a one-night stand with a little person and Angelina Jolie.  Now I never will, what with the all the "grown-up" "mom" responsibilities I'll be taking on.  Sob.


Actually since I'm having a c-section one thing I won't have to worry about is a mangled broken vagina. A deli meat catastrophe, if you will (Darbi, are you reading this???).  Chris and I joke about it whenever someone on TV makes a joke about childbirth ruining the goods (which happens far more often than you'd think). "No floppy vagina! High five for surgery!"  Don't worry. I know most vaginas make it through just fine and are perfectly normal afterward. Believing otherwise is really just a coping mechanism to make myself feel better about the fact that I'll never have the natural hippy dippy water birth with herbs and doves and incense and my baby delivered gently into the hands of a wood sprite sitting atop a dolphin that I wanted.

P.S. This child had better appreciate the fact that I ate BEETS today instead of mashed potatoes because I know that beets are a "nutritional powerhouse" and mashed potatoes just taste delicious. YOU OWE ME.

P.P.S. I've gained six pounds so far. I don't know if that's good or bad. Probably bad since the baby weighs like 8 ounces right now.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Blame Game

Today I am 18 weeks and 3 days pregnant.  Last year, on April 5, I was also 18 weeks and 3 days pregnant.  Late that night, I felt a sensation like a water balloon popping and a gush of blood. I was sure my water had broken. First thing in the morning, I went to the midwife's office. The baby's heart was beating away, loud and clear.  She gave me a fern test, which tests for amniotic fluid. It came back negative. My big anatomy ultrasound was scheduled for 20 weeks exactly; she decided to move it up a week - three days from then.

Two days later, my water broke for sure. This time it was clear, and I immediately went to the ER.

Five days after that, Caleb was born.

I'd had very minor spotting at the beginning of the pregnancy, but around 15 or 16 weeks it picked up, and there was bleeding to some degree nearly every day.  I learned later that bleeding like that can be a very typical symptom of cervical changes. I also learned later that the fern test isn't accurate when accompanied by blood and the blood can obscure the amniotic fluid, giving a false negative.

I question everything.  I blame myself, but I trusted my caregivers. I thought they would take care of me and my baby.

Why didn't the midwife tell me, after I'd gone in several times for bleeding, that I wasn't a candidate for midwifery care anymore?  Why didn't I get an ultrasound to look for the source of that bleeding? Why didn't she know that the presence of blood could give a false negative on a ferning test? Why didn't she order an ultrasound immediately upon my coming in with the concern that my water had broken?  In retrospect, waiting three days was completely insane. But I trusted her when she said everything was okay.  Why didn't she consult with one of the doctors at that point?  The midwife practice I was seeing was in a hospital, and shared office space, staff, and the L&D area with both the regular OBs and the high-risk doctors. Why didn't I insist on a second opinion??

I'm convinced that my water broke that first time, and that it broke a second time two days later (the bag can reseal, temporarily or permanently, after breaking).

If I'd gotten an ultrasound at 15 weeks when I started bleeding, would they have discovered that my cervix was shortening?  Would I have gotten a cerclage at that point? Would that have saved Caleb?

If she'd used ultrasound to check on my fluid levels instead of using a ferning test, would she have discovered that my water had broken 48 hours before it broke "for real"? Would I have been admitted to the hospital at that point, given antibiotics earlier, gone on bedrest earlier (when they broke "for real", they put me in the hospital for three days with IV antibiotics and saline solution).  Would the bag of waters have resealed and stayed resealed?  Would that have saved Caleb?

We'll never know if different care would have changed the outcome.  Maybe it would have been the same and he would have died no matter what we did.  But maybe he would have had a chance if I'd been more knowledgeable; if she'd have been more aggressive.

I still believe in the standard of care that most midwives provide for low-risk, uncomplicated pregnancies and births.  I do believe that when I started bleeding at 15 weeks, the midwife should have bowed out of my care.  I do believe that when I was sure my water broke at 18 weeks, she should have bowed out of my care.  I don't blame midwives in general.  I'm not even sure I blame her specifically. I should have spoken up. I should have insisted on an ultrasound. I should have asked for a second opinion. I didn't.  At the least, we share blame. At the most, as his mother, the blame falls on me for not protecting him.

The what-ifs in do nothing but frustrate and sadden me, so I try not to think about them too much.

But please. Be an advocate for yourself and your baby. If something doesn't feel right or you don't feel like the care you are receiving is enough, speak up. Your baby's life may depend on it.