Monday, February 22, 2010

Week 34

We have made it to week 34! The baby is now just shy of 18 inches long, a foot and a half, or to put it another way, the height of an American Girl doll (let's hope she doesn't ever find out about those things!). She weighs about 5 pounds (the website I get my info from says "5 pounds, about the weight of a 5 pound bag of sugar." I thought that was pretty far from creative, so I didn't include that in the picture portion haha). The lanugo (or baby fur, as I call it) is almost completely gone and she is now starting to coat in a cream cheesey-substance. She is also starting to develop her own immune system this week, which is probably a good thing because obviously mine needs a little boost.

We had our 34 week check up today and got another "all is great" report. I have gained about a pound since our last visit, which brings me to 15 or 16 pounds total I think so far. Her heartbeat was strong at 150 bpm. The best news of all was that we found out she is in the right position she needs to be in for the big day -- chillin' head first. I was thinking she was turning around this weekend, as I was getting a lot of pressure from new places Saturday night. We also found out she is measuring SLIGHTLY bigger than normal, which of course Travis and I hope means she's a couple days ahead of schedule, but he said it could mean we might have to start watching for the possibility of a big baby. He assured us it's still a little too soon to know much on the size for sure.

As we left, Travis made the comment that it very much felt like the beginning of a finale at this appointment, and I had to agree. We scheduled all the rest of our appointments right up until the due date, he said next time we come we're going to talk to Barb about final preparations, and it just now feels like it's really starting to come to a close.

I've never wanted something to speed up and slow down quite like this pregnancy. I'm making a conscious effort to savor the good moments -- the fun times when we see a little foot or poke her in the butt when she sticks it out, the weekend mornings where we can wake up, look at the clock, and sleep for another 2 hours with just the two of us and some sleepy cats at our feet, and Travis's 11 p.m. talks with my belly when he gets home from work. But the excitement is definitely building up more and more strongly on the flip-side: the realization that we are going to get to hold and kiss our little girl in just a few short weeks. That thought alone is simply amazing, and it is the thought that I hold onto at 3 a.m. when I'm up with heart burn or peeing for the 2nd or 3rd time that night.

There are some days where I couldn't feel less prepared. Then moments later I'll feel like I'm finally getting ready to do something I was always meant to do. The only thought that remains constant is that regardless with Travis, our families, and our friends by my side, this is going to be the most amazing journey.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

We almost made it through without getting sick again...

... but it didn't quite happen. I could feel it coming on Monday night -- the back of your throat, scratchy sensation that always says, "Tomorrow, you will feel like death." And sure enough, the next day I woke up feeling awful. I couldn't decide if I should go to work or not, but I decided to give it a try and went in. Bad decision. I could barely function by lunchtime, and I even changed my lesson plans so that I could mostly sit at my desk and concentrate on not passing out while the kids worked independently. I went home and immediately dropped into bed and took an hour nap.

I felt progressively worse as the evening rolled on, but still didn't have a fever or anything the doctor's office was too concerned about. However, by the time Travis came home from work I had the decision made and called in sick for work the next day. It turned out to be a fantastic decision, as that night I did not sleep at all, excluding 3 or 4 15 minute increments. I had terrible body chills, so I would pile on the blankets. Then I would break out into a terrible sweat. Lather, rinse, repeat. My head was full of pressure, my nose was totally plugged, my throat was aching, every position I laid in gave me heart burn or made the baby press into my ribcage... not a great situation.

Then around 2 a.m. I took my temperature, and it read at 99.4. A little alarming, but nothing to call home about. I took some Tylenol and continued trying to sleep. Ten minutes later, I felt like my skin was going to burn off. So, I took my temperature again: 100.2. 10 more minutes went by, 100.5, then 100.8. I was trying everything: stripping off clothes, putting ice cold washcloths on my neck and face, moving to a new room, nothing helped. I was pretty worried because I had just taken Tylenol and all I could think was "What would my temperature be if I hadn't taken Tylenol?" At 3:15 a.m. I decided to double check my info from the doctor about temperatures, knowing 102 was the magic number of concern, and saw that it said to call if my temperature reached above 100.2 at any given time. After a small debate, I called it in. I don't know how pleased my doctor was to hear my pathetic voice at 3 a.m., but he listened to me, told me to take another dose of Tylenol, and call him as soon as the office opened.

I called and came in in the morning. I decided to wear my warmest pajama pants (bright blue), the only hoodie I have that still fits (bright red), and my glasses. Pair that outfit with my bright fuchsia coat, and you'll wish I would have documented the look with my camera. I stumbled into the lab for a strep screen, where there was an embarrassing episode of my extra-sensitive-these-days gag reflex making it nearly impossible for the poor nurse to get a sample. (It was bad enough they eventually had me do it to myself in the bathroom). All the gagging brought on watering eyes, which brought on frustration, and all of these together brought on an emotional breakdown in the bathroom trying to swab my stupid throat. Eventually, we got the job done and I moved on to see my doctor.

My weight was good (up a pound), my BP was good, and - most importantly of all - that beautiful heartbeat was dancing loud and strong at 160 bpm. The tests came back negative, and after looking me over Dr. Maurus concluded that I just had a plain and simple terrible cold paired with a fever and chills. He prescribed the usual cold remedies of my mother: clear liquids, lots of sleep, and regular doses of Tylenol.

Travis was also not feeling the greatest (and I'm sure it didn't help to be sharing a bed with the tossing and turning, nose-blowing, coughing, thermometer beeping lady) so he took a sick day to take care of himself and me. We lounged, we souped, we slept, and by bedtime last night I was feeling much better.

Today was back to school for me. I still have a stuffy nose and my voice is nearly gone, but I haven't had a fever all day so I think I'm on the road to recovery. Thanks to everyone for their thoughts and prayers.

6 1/2 weeks left until we meet our little sunshine... :)

Monday, February 15, 2010

This week the baby weighs a little over 4 pounds, the weight of an average pineapple (one of my favorites!)and is about 17.5 inches long, about the length of a collarbone necklace. Her bones and skull are hardening this week, but most importantly her respiratory system is almost completely mature. This is exciting because it is the last system that needs to develop before she comes! Her pupils are now advanced enough that they constrict and dilate with light and dark.

This is us at 33 weeks -- well, 32 weeks and 6 days, getting ready to go out and celebrate Valentine's Day! Someone asked Travis to switch work with him, so he got Friday, Saturday and Sunday off to spend together! Saturday night we went to a movie (we discovered part-way through the evening that it was the first movie we went to see since Travis's birthday in July. We're already those pathetic people that don't go anywhere!) and dinner at Outback Steakhouse. Sunday we celebrated the big day by going into a spa and getting massages. It was a very relaxing and great way to spend an afternoon :). As Travis said, if they were just a hair less pricey, they would be a regular event in our lives haha. I think the baby enjoyed the massage as well, as she was wiggling like crazy in the waiting room and totally chilled as soon as the massage began.

The crib mattress from Grandma Adams finally came in this week, so we picked it up after church. One more thing to check off the list. We are still on the hunt for curtains we like for the room. I never realized how picky I apparently am when it comes to curtains, because we have yet to find anything we like. Travis keeps reminding me we have plenty of time to find some, since the baby won't be sleeping in there for a little while after we bring her home.

Other than that, we're just trucking right along and coutning down the days!

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Someone suggested that I keep a list of foods that the baby and I have enjoyed throughout the pregnancy to refer back to in the future. I thought it seemed like a fun idea!

For breakfast, we went through about a 3 month stint of strawberry oatmeal and two glasses of orange juice every single morning. It never failed to sound great! Recently we have been mixing some waffles in with the oatmeal to bring a bit of excitement into the morning routine, but the orange juice is a MUST. Sometimes, orange juice sounds so good we get up at 3 a.m. to chug a glass!

Lunch at school always consists of leftovers from that week's dinners, yogurt (usually raspberry or strawberry-banana), a piece of fresh fruit, and something else that sounded good that week at the grocery store (usually salad, rice krispies, or cookies haha).

Dinners, however, have always proved to be a challenge. In the first trimester, dinner never sounded appealing, and I ended up having Tombstone pizza 2 or 3 times a week. Taco salads, spaghetti, vegetable beef soup, and cheeseburger soup have proven to be the most popular once my appetite came back.

Snacks that I have really taken to include clementines (for the latter part of November, all of December, and most of January I had at least one a day), peanut butter and chocolate chip granola bars, bananas with peanut butter, and most sinful of all: chips and dip or Chips Ahoy cookies (which never sounded appealing pre-pregnancy, odd enough). In the past month or so, I've taken to making a fruit smoothie at night 3 or 4 times a week with raspberries, strawberries, peaches, and orange juice (okay, and maybe a little raspberry sherbet haha).

I have consumed a ridiculous amount of orange juice, Crystal Light, tea, root beer, water with lemon, and Dr. Pepper. I also always have apple juice and cranberry-pomegranite juice on hand.

There haven't been too many foods that have sounded truly terrible, but there have been a few. I haven't been able to bring myself to eat green beans (which of course makes the bags of beans I froze from the garden last summer such a sad sight in the freezer). Chicken and sloppy joes have also never sounded like a good idea, and both times I made them I couldn't bring myself to eat them.

There you have it -- all I can think of for now :). I'm going to try to add to my list as I think of the things I know I'm already forgetting. I guess it's a good thing I'm writing all of this down now before my pregnant brain turns into mommy brain, which I hear isn't much of an improvement! :)

Monday, February 8, 2010

an "all is pefect" diagnosis

Today we went in for our 32 week check up. My official weight gain is now about 13.5 pounds, which Dr. Maurus said was just perfect. He also gave a "perfect" to my blood pressure and fundal height, so we were very pleased with our check up! We talked for a while about the epidural, and he made the little apprehensions I had about it dissolve away so I am very glad I asked about it. He said the problems people run into with epidurals usually come when people come in undecided about it and make the decision with too little time to do in, when people are obese, or when people have rare bone abnormalities. He said because we are going in knowing what we want, we should have no problems at all. He also expressed no concern for my lost sense of feeling resulting in trouble pushing during labor, saying it very rarely becomes an issue and when it does there are options to fix that problem. Travis and I both left with a nice peace of mind.

Despite the doctor's assurance that the baby's size is just where it should be, SEVERAL complete strangers took it upon themselves to ask me about my due date today (and some not so complete strangers haha). It started with one of my students from last year asking when I was due because I looked like I was going to pop, and was surprised I had 8 weeks left to go. That was quickly followed by my friend Sylvia, whose mouth dropped in amazement when she saw my belly (apparently it grew over the weekend??) Then when I got to the doctor's office, the other lady in the waiting room said, "Wow, you must be just counting days now!" And I said, "Well, we're getting there. Still 8 more weeks!" And she said, "Oh wow! I never would have guessed!" That comment was soon followed by the floating nurse that weighed and measured me, saying "You must be getting close!" when she saw me come around the corner, looked at my chart, and then said, "Oh well, I guess we still have a ways. I hope I didn't offend!" And then lastly, standing in line at the grocery store the lady in front of me asked if I was just having one, or twins, or triplets. I laughed and said just one, and she replied, "Are you here with someone? You seem too far along to be taking chances carrying groceries by yourself and being out and about by yourself." So, after coming home and changing into pajamas, I have concluded that the cute maternity top I wore today shall be retired. However it hung on me, it was wrong.

Speaking of maternity tops, one of my students in 10th hour today raised her hand and asked, "Are you going to keep wearing your maternity clothes after you have your baby?" And I, not understanding where she was going with this, replied, "Well, for a little while. But I'm hoping to be back to normal by the time school starts again." And she said, "Oh, well I was just wondering because you just have this whole new wardrobe now and you have such nice clothes and I was just wondering if you were going to like, keep wearing them." I laughed and replied, "So you're saying I dress better now than I did last year? That's probably because I'm wearing my sister in law's maternity wardrobe, and her fashion sense is much better than mine." Hoping for a chuckle, instead I got the reply, "Yeah. Tell her to pick out all your clothes."

So there you have it. My myriad of compliments for the day.

In other news, on the baby front: our baby girl is now 17 inches long and weighs over 4 pounds. She is roughly the size of a pair of knee-high boots (my mind automatically jumps to Pretty Woman).She spends her days blinking, looking around, grabbing things, making faces, practicing her breathing, peeing and listening to everything around her. I can definitely believe that she is busy in there, because it seems like she is always on the move. Today at the doctor's office she poked some sort of body part out so far Travis noticed it from across the room!

We also had a very busy but fun weekend as the whole Kershaw clan came up (and down) to see Travis join the Lutheran church. Grandma and Grandad came up Friday through the icky weather and Uncle Adam, Aunt Molly, cousin Alex, Aunt Angie, Uncle Trevor, and Aunt Ashley came on Saturday. We enjoyed some tacos, homemade salsa, and board games (well, some of us enjoyed the board games. Others*cough* Molly *cough* just complained their way through the rules and then continued to complain their way through the game... hahaha). Sunday morning was an early start with 9 people trying to get ready in our little house, but we got there on time, Travis renounced the devil, and all was well. Then the Kershaws and the Parcherts went out to Happy Joes to celebrate with the lunch buffet! All in all, it was a great time!