Monday, December 19, 2011

Quick update – Katie is here!

Just wanted to write a short post to announce that Katie Grace arrived after an extremely quick labor and delivery on December 14th!  She was 5 lbs, 4 oz at birth and 18 inches long, born at 2:18 p.m. And totally cute. I love her!

We checked in for the induction at 8 a.m., and by 8:45, started the pitocin. My contractions were irregular but manageable for about two hours. I was still 5 cm dilated. Sometime around 10:30, I had a sharp stabbing pain that radiated from my front to back on my left side. I’m still not sure quite what it was – thinking maybe the baby was laying on a nerve or something, but it was PAINFUL. We started discussing the epidural and by 11ish or so, the nice epidural man came in and I got the good stuff. It was awesome. Of all the things I’ve heard that can go wrong with an epidural, mine was pretty good. I could still move my legs, although they were numb. I could still feel the pressure of the contractions although they weren’t painful at all.

Around 1 p.m., my doctor came in and broke my water. I was still between 5-6 cm dilated so no progress on that front. We joked that I would be having the baby within the hour although I’m not sure anyone believed it. My doctor and nurse both told me that if I started to feel pressure, to tell them. Well, right away things felt really different…. definite pressure! I debated whether or not to call the nurse, but she came back after about 15 minutes anyway and said “something’s going on, isn’t it?” Yep. Time to push. In 15 minutes, I’d dilated to a 10 and it was baby time.

I practice pushed for a bit and really pushed for about half an hour. By 2:18, she arrived! She is healthy and beautiful and sleeps like a champ (so far – she’s only 5 days old, I suppose!)



Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Top 10 List

I posed an interesting question for moms on Facebook: If you knew you only had a few days left sans baby, what would you spend your time doing? The responses were interesting – some were expected, some were funny. Mostly everyone said sleep, a few suggested making freezer meals (done and done!). I appreciated the advice to spend time with my husband… he’s certainly my favorite person in the world and any uninterrupted time I can get with him right now is not to be taken for granted. I’m not sure how often we’ll be able to go out on dates once the baby is here, but I do so love the “our” time we get together. It’s important in a marriage, I believe. And about to become very important, I suspect!

But the responses got me thinking. I am a firm believer that with gain comes loss, and seeing everyone’s responses made me a little sad – there’s so much that will be lost with such a substantial gain as having a baby! So my mind keeps turning the things that I’ll be gaining instead, and in particular, things I’m really looking forward to by not being pregnant anymore.

Don’t get me wrong: pregnancy hasn’t been horrible. Sure, I am not a fan of packing on the pounds, or all the typical symptoms that come with pregnancy, but a part of me knows that I’m pretty lucky. I’ve felt pretty great this whole pregnancy, even with the 24/7 first trimester sickness. I’ve been able to exercise and push myself quite a bit – including a 10k PR!

But let’s be honest. As blissful as one can be during pregnancy (and I’m certainly not the blissful type. Pregnancy’s been a 9-month long means to an end for me), things keep popping into my head that I’m really looking forward to once this chapter ends and the next begins.

1. Sleeping on my stomach. I went for a prenatal massage on Friday, and experienced my first prenatal massage table where there’s a hole in the table cut out for the belly and boobs. For the first time in perhaps 4 or 5 months, I was able to lay on my stomach and nearly fell asleep during the massage. It was HEAVEN! I wish they made prenatal mattresses! I’m a stomach sleeper, so giving it up has been difficult. My hips hurt from having to sleep on my side all the time. All I want to do is stretch out on my stomach with a big fluffy pillow and drift off.

2. Alcohol. Need I say more? There’s a build-your-own Bloody Mary buffet at a local brewery here that has my name all over it.

3. Pre-pregnancy pants. Most of my pants and skirts have moved over to the other side of the closet. We’re going to be reunited very shortly, I believe. It sucks to lose weight and have a wardrobe you spent money and time building, only to have to put it away for several months. I was lucky enough to wear a lot of my pants until about 4-5 months pregnant. But I yearn for the day where I can wear pants again that have real zippers and buttons.

4. Pushing myself during a run, and keeping up with the girls in treadmill boot camp.

5. Bending in half, tying my shoes without effort, and getting out of bed like a normal person instead of rolling myself off the mattress. All things that never occurred to me that would happen. It’s hard to bend over and pick something up when there’s a baby in your belly!

6. Indigestion and constipation – be gone! Years ago, I had my gallbladder removed and should have bought stock in Prilosec. When I was obese, I had to use it every other day because my indigestion was so terrible. When I lost weight, however, I was down to taking one about every 1.5-2 weeks. Tums actually worked for once since the surgery. And then came pregnancy. With a baby and a uterus pushing up on my stomach, I have indigestion all the time. Prilosec lasts about 2 days, and I am so sick of Tums that the only ones that don’t make me gag are the peppermint flavored ones. Oh, I can’t wait to stop dropping a ton of money on antacids!

7. Speaking of gagging… not being randomly sick after meals. Once the 24/7 nausea ended about week 10, I would (and still do) get randomly sick after meals. Some things seem to always make me sick (seafood), other things will be fine one day, but make me barf the next. During the second trimester, I could see that it was definitely tied to a surge in hormones, but in the past few weeks, it seems to be just totally sporadic. I had a $50 steak on my wedding anniversary. I ended up flushing it down the toilet. Ugh.

8. Middle school acne. I’m really praying that my skin goes back to normal after pregnancy, though I’m aware it may not. But I have high hopes. I’ve always had decent skin, but since being pregnant, my face won’t stop breaking out – badly. I don’t think I had zits this bad when I was a teenager! It seems as though my normally dry skin is now oily, and my once resilient skin has to be washed every single night. Dear God, PLEASE let this go away!!

9. Smaller boobs. Most women love pregnancy boobs. Mine were fine the way they were pre-pregnancy, and now they are the size they were when I was at my highest weight. I realize that since I’ll be attempting breastfeeding, that they’ll stay the same size for a while until I stop. But knowing that eventually they (should) shrink back to a smaller size and fit in my bras again gives me something to look forward to.

10. Having control over my body. I never realized how much I would sacrifice when it came to my own body. I’m so used to just doing whatever I want in terms of pushing myself with exercise, or choosing what to eat or drink, etc. When I became pregnant, I worried endlessly about what I was doing. Was it ok to run? Was it ok to eat this or that? What do you mean I can’t take Excedrin for a migraine, or Ativan to fly on a plane? Everybody has a list of do’s and don’ts, and most of the time, I tried to play it safe. But I gotta tell ya – Tylenol doesn’t do jack squat for migraines, and I’m so tired of wondering if it’s ok to eat this or that. I can’t wait to get out there for a sweaty run and really, really push myself without worrying for once!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Special dates and other thoughts

Exactly 5 years ago as I write this, I was saying “I do” to my new husband. I had no clue what the next five years would bring. I also had no clue if I’d ever go from looking like this:


(Around 195 lbs and sadly not the highest I would reach)

To this:


(Looking at that photo makes me anxious to get back into my pre-pregnancy jeans! Man, I love those jeans!)

We’ve had a great 5 years so far, and I hope that the best is yet to come. It’s funny, when we got married, of course the next question everyone asks you is “so when are you going to have kids?” We eventually started telling everyone we were on a 5 year plan. And funnily enough, it turned out to be almost exactly 5 years when we would start our family. Believe me, I didn’t want to plan it that way. In fact, given that our anniversary is 12/9, and my husband’s birthday is 12/28, plus Christmas thrown in there, the last thing I wanted was a December baby. I even told my husband that I didn’t want to get pregnant right away when we started trying because that meant we’d have a December kiddo. Well, what’s that saying? When you make plans, God laughs? Yep, I’m pretty sure He got a kick out of that one. But as I’ve been reminded several times, there’s a bigger plan at stake here.

I’ve got a lot of good things to write about. At my 37 week appointment last Friday, I had gained 22 lbs with this pregnancy. 22! I’m so happy with that number, and super happy with the way things have turned out. I last ran at 35 weeks before deciding it was time to stop. I feel pretty good with that decision, although I do really miss it, but the pain isn’t worth it. At last week’s appointment, I was having contractions already and dilated to 4 cm and 80% effaced. My doctor told us that if the contractions didn’t stop, then to head to labor and delivery around 1 p.m. We did, and I had dilated another centimeter by that point. Well, long story short, the bambino decided that she didn’t want to come out (too cold on the outside or something!) and after 12 hours of contractions, promptly quit her entrance into the world. Indecisive or stubborn. Sounds like her mom. And dad.

So, we were sent home, being practically promised that we would not make it through the weekend without having our baby. The weekend came and went. We’re still waiting.

I had my 38 week appointment today and am still 5 cm dilated, but now 90% effaced and the baby’s head is at +1. My doctor won’t induce before 39 weeks (which is Monday 12/12 for me), so we talked it over and given where I work and the possibility of going into labor on base, and being locked down (it’s happened plenty of times before!), we set an eviction date for Wednesday, 12/14. It seems surreal that the end (or the beginning!) is within reach. On the one hand, I am excited, and on the other hand, a little disappointed that I will not go into labor on my own. I don’t know why this bothers me because I’m not against induction, especially since my big fear is going into labor very quickly and not making it to the hospital, AND not being able to get an epidural, so this gives me a lot of control. But there’s definitely a side of me that just wants to let nature take its course. Given that I’m 5 cm/90% already, I don’t think it’ll take much to get this baby out.

So by next Wednesday at the latest, little miss Katie will be here!