Monday, August 27, 2012

half baked

Today marks the halfway point in my pregnancy.

20 weeks.

It's really a dream come true. I can't believe I'm here. I never envisioned this. Sure, I dreamt about it, but those were just fantasies... like winning the lottery. Not going to happen to me.

But it's happening, and we are just chugging right along.

And it's starting to feel more and more real as each day passes. For Buster, too, I think.

Last night, as I was preparing dinner, Buster said to me,

"What are you going to do when we have a baby to take care of?"

I laughed, and told him I'd be taking care of the baby. Little comments like that just show me that he's thinking about it, and thinking how our lives will change. And that he's getting excited, too.

"I can't wait to build a treehouse for Henry."

These comments make me melt. I can't wait for us to be parents.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Why I'm fat, and the Panama Canal

I've mentioned a couple times before how I occasionally babysit for two little boys. They are so cute, and I really enjoy spending time with them.

And sometimes, what they say can be eye-opening, funny, shocking, and/or crippling.

After my miscarriage and subsequent D&C, I had one of those crippling moments with W, who was barely 4-years-old at the time.

But a couple nights ago, when I babysat for the first time in a couple months, W had me laughing. He is now four-and-a-half, and he is just too smart for his own good!

After his parents left, I was getting the Play-Doh out so W and his brother G could play (making noodles is their favorite!). While I was walking around gathering the supplies, W casually asks me,

"Miss Kara, why are you so fat now?"

I smile, and reply that I have a baby growing in my belly. And he will grow there for several more months, and then he'll be ready to come out.

"And then he comes out the birth canal, right?"

My eyes got wide, and I said, "Um, yes, he will." I was really hoping that he didn't ask me any questions about the birth canal. Not only am I not really an expert on the birthing experience, well... the birth canal is not necessarily an area of the body I feel comfortable discussing with a 4-year-old!

And then baby boy was forgotten, and Play-Doh time ensued.

Later on, though, when W and G were having their evening snack of yogurt and sprinkles, W asks me if the baby has a name yet. I tell him that he does in fact, and it's Henry.

"Henry. That's a good name. Like Henry the steam engine."

Well little W, I'm glad you approve!

Soon after I put the boys to bed, their parents arrive home. I tell them about W asking why I was fat (W's dad got a good laugh out of that one!), and about the birth canal reference. W's mom laughed, and said that W thinks of the birth canal much like the Panama Canal, and that he definitely does not know where in the body the birth canal is.

So I'm sure little W thinks that Baby Henry will come sailing down a nice, wide river when he's ready to be born...

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Let's talk TV...

I'm enjoying this season thus far, however I'm not too tough to please when it comes to Project Runway. I thoroughly enjoy watching designers create, so it really can't go wrong in my eyes.

Obviously, contestants get on my nerves. And the offenders still in it this season are: Elena and Gunnar Deatherage.

There is absolutely no way that Gunnar Deatherage can be his real name. I'm not buying it. I didn't like him last year when he "tried out" for the show (if you recall, they had 20 designers initially, but only 16 actually moved on. He was one of the four eliminated early.), and I still don't like him.

Elena is, well, not very nice. It's annoying watching her be so mean. Plus, I get that she has an aesthetic, but give me regular shoulders just once!

I have a few favorites, too. I do really like Melissa. I loved her blue dress last episode. Thisismybloghello commented yesterday that Melissa's dress was inappropriate for work, which I agree with for the most part. However, I still loved the dress, and would love to wear it to some function.

Another favorite of mine is Sonjia. Her style is fun and sexy and modern, and she is a likeable character. And  rounding out my top three of favorites is... Dmitry! I can't imagine he's in most people's favorites, but I like him. Although he looks like Snape, and I want to call him that when I see him, I can get over that!

If you like Project Runway, you might just like Face Off as well. Or if you like cool movie makeup, such as zombies and aliens. Tonight is the season premier of Face Off, and Buster and I are so excited! Even more thrilling is that they moved it up to 9:00 p.m., versus the 10:00 time slot it was in last year. AND... the episode is an hour and a half long! YES. 

Tonight they are doing some kind of Star Wars themed challenge, so should be fun!

Buster and I were ready to give up on True Blood after last season. Too many sappy love story themes. Too much sap turns both of us off.

After the second season of Game of Thrones ended, I canceled HBO. I wasn't planning on watching True Blood. That was, until, my good friend and co-worker gave me her info so I could watch it on HBOGO at home on the Xbox. 

Buster and I needed a show over the summer anyway, so this worked out.

And this season has been the best season in a couple years! The best villain character ever to grace the show made a reappearance, which has been fun. Some new plot twists coupled with limited cheesefests have given this show a much needed rejuvenation. Next week is the season finale, and I'm pretty sad it's going to be over!

Monday, August 20, 2012

cervical length stress

Ok, I know I'm a slacker. I'm sorry!

It's been a crazy couple of weeks for me. Not only did my office move (I went from an office with a door back to a cubicle... joy!), but work has been absolutely crazy. Oh, and I had a terrible scare about my cervix length. Oh, you want to hear about that? Sure!

One week ago was my anatomy scan. Henry was still a Henry! And he looks great. They didn't tell me any of his measurements or any real specifics, but that he looks good and perfect. I'll take it!

The ultrasound tech, who really wasn't allowed to tell me much of anything (I met with my doctor right after the anatomy scan), did mention that my placenta was low-lying, but just barely so. It's not covering my cervix, and will most likely move up to where it needs to be as my uterus and my Henry grow larger. So, nothing to worry about!

After my scan, I head into an exam room while I wait for a doctor. At my practice there are four doctors. Since any of them may be on call the day you deliver, I've tried to rotate my appointments so that I could get to know each of them a little.

The doctor I met with on Monday, well I had met with him two appointments ago. At my 16 week appointment, a different doctor (who I really like) recommended that at my next appointment they check my cervical length. He suggested this because, as some of my long-time readers know, I had a LEEP procedure back in August of 2010. I liked this suggestion. If anything, I'm proactive.

So, when meeting with the doctor after my anatomy scan, I mentioned this to him. He looked at the notes from my scan, and said (verbatim),

"Your placenta isn't long, but it's nothing to be concerned about. It's measuring 2.21 cm."

Oh, ok. At that exact moment in time, I knew nothing about average cervical length. So, when my doc told me it was nothing to be concerned about...well, I listened. He recommended checking on my low-lying placenta and my cervical length again in two months.

I typically google the shit out of everything, but that was a busy Monday at work. I didn't get a chance to google until that evening. And wow, I did not like what I was reading.

EVERYTHING I read online said that a cervical length of 2.21 cm at 18 weeks was bedrest + cerclage worthy. A cerclage can only be done up until 24 weeks at the latest. So WHY was my doctor not wanting to check my cervix again until I was 26 weeks? WHY was he not concerned with an apparently super-short cervix? WHY did they not do a vaginal ultrasound when the measurement from the abdominal one was so alarming? What the hell was going on here?

After crying, stressing, and googling the night away, I decide to call my doctor's office the next day and ask to speak to the doctor I *do* like, who suggested the cervical measurement to being with. Well, Tuesday is his day off. Lovely. I leave a message with his nurse, who is really sweet. I tell her my concerns, and she says that my doctor will call me Wednesday morning when he gets in.

I post on a high-risk pregnancy forum. Everyone who responds says to get a second opinion. Not being one to ignore consistent advice, I call the local university high-risk OBGYN. They can get me in on Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. I make the appointment, and secretly hope I hear from my doctor by then, and I can instead just go in to my regular doctor's office for a transvaginal ultrasound.

I spend half of Tuesday googling. I spend all of Tuesday worrying. How will I pay the bills if I go on bedrest? I worked so hard for this pregnancy, obviously I will do whatever it takes to get Henry here safely, even if that means moving in with family. Will I make it to viability with such a short cervix? Will Henry end up in the NICU for many months?

It was a rough day, to say the least.

Wednesday morning goes by in a blur, and I head to my second opinion appointment. When I get called back, it's by the nurse who I spoke with on the phone. I had explained my situation to her, and she was very nice and understanding. She takes my blood pressure. It's high, for the first time in my life. Sigh.

We go to an exam room, and she asks me the usual gamut of questions. She leaves. A resident doctor comes in. Asks me the same round of questions (why is this necessary???). Says they are going to try to get me in for a transvag ultrasound.

The nurse comes back in with a wheelie blood pressure cart. Takes my blood pressure again, and it's normal. Phew.

Then an ultrasound tech comes down to get me. They worked me in! So, for the first time in quite a while (10 weeks to be exact, which may not seem like quite a while to some of you... but for me, it's some new kind of record.), I had a transvaginal ultrasound. Henry's heartbeat was 139, the same as it was two days prior. But she didn't linger on my little man, and I understood.

But the whole time she was measuring my cervix, I could see Henry's feet kicking away in the corner of the screen. That certainly made my day much brighter!

After taking several measurements over five minutes, the shortest measurement she got was 3.4 cm. She told me it looks good, and definitely not short.

Relief swept over me.

I head back to the exam room, and the resident doctor comes back in. While I was having my ultrasound, my clinic faxed my records over. And in those records, it says that my placenta is 2.21 cm away from my cervix.


My cervix measured 4 on Monday.

So, my doctor told me the wrong measurement while looking at my chart.

I am mostly relieved, but obviously a little annoyed that the whole thing happened at all. But I do realize people make mistakes. So, I'm sticking with my OBGYN. But I certainly hate that I was worried sick for 2 1/2 days.

But to end this post on a positive note, here is Henry's latest profile shot:

18 weeks... Henry kept putting his hand to his mouth!

I have more posts in the works in my head. I hope to post them someday soon!

Oh, and anyone watching the new season of Project Runway?? I know some of you are PR fans!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

95% sure we are having a...

On Wednesday, we had our optional gender scan. They told me I was able to do this at 16 weeks, and my appointment was at 16w2d.

Unfortunately, we didn't get my favorite u/s tech. We got Belle's dad (Maurice) from Beauty and the Beast again.

Sure, he's a nice fellow. But he barely talks. I have to really prod information out of him. And that's no fun, let's be honest. Sarah, my favorite u/s tech, is so sweet, and spends assloads of time with me. I made sure to make my anatomy scan appointment with her.

Anyway, back to the appointment. Maurice, in his typical fashion, didn't really say much of anything for at least five minutes. Awkward! Luckily I had just met with my doctor and heard baby's heart on the doppler, otherwise I might have freaked. Baby was being super lazy, and not really moving much at all! What is with this kid?

Finally Maurice gets a decent potty shot. I really don't know much about potty shots. Yeah, I know a turtle thing means boy, and three lines means girl. But depending on the angle, it all kind of looks the same anyway!

Maurice says, "Well, I think we have a little boy here."


Wait, you think???

I ask him, "How sure are you?"

"95%," he replies.

That 95% was based on this photo:

Then, baby moved, and a better angle was visible.

The label job is all mine. Buster asked me to label it "wenis" so he could post the photo on FB. Yes, I'll have two little boys in the house, it seems...

After baby boy moved and we got the above angle shot, I asked Maurice if that made him even more confident that baby was indeed a boy, and he said yes. So, I'm feeling pretty confident now.

I go back in less than two weeks for my anatomy scan, and we can verify then.

In the meantime... I bought my first baby items! Ok, well, my very first baby purchases were about three years ago. I picked up some tiny baby Puma socks at TJ Maxx, one boy set and one girl set. But they have been quietly and sadly living in my sock drawer all this time. So I don't really count those as my first baby purchases.

I hit up Target. And what is the first thing I see that I just have to get?

So, so true.
I couldn't resist! Then I snagged this cute little NB onesie, that baby boy will definitely get his picture taken in (with some jeans and a pair of chucks? Or socks that look like chucks?):

And finally, I picked up a 3-piece set that was on sale. It's 6M size, so I'm hoping baby Henry will be able to wear it in the summer! It's a striped tank-top onesie, matching gray shorts, and a cute striped alligator t-shirt! The onesie has this patch on it:

Cute alligator t-shirt:

Oh, and in case you are newer to my blog, or missed my post where I revealed our choice for a boy name, I'll give you a refresher. We have had the name Henry picked out for years. And the inspiration is a dog.

Yes, you read that correctly. We will be naming our son after a dog.

Not just any dog, though! The most regal, sweet, caring, handsome Golden Retriever ever. He was Buster's aunt's dog, and he happily lived for 13 years. He was the reason I wanted to get a Golden Retriever.

And Buster has a cute story. One time, when visiting his aunt's farm, Buster trekked into the surrounding forest to gather some firewood. He stumbled on a log or uneven ground, fell and skinned up his knee. He looked up, and there was Henry. Checking on him. Making sure he was ok. What a sweet ol' boy, right?

So yes, we are naming our son after a dog, but we are not ashamed of that.
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