Friday, October 28, 2016

Pregnancy update: 39+ weeks

This is Cat, short for Caterpillar, to fit with the metamorphosing animals theme. (Notice the butterflies on her sleeper?) She was born on October 19 and I have already written 5000+ words for her birth story. :p But for now it is late and both kids are sleeping so I will save the wordiness for another time.

Friday, October 14, 2016


The other week I was talking with Tad's occupational therapist about various things and at one point I told her how Tad was never really cuddly, not even as a baby--when he nursed he would push himself as far away from me as possible while still staying latched on.

She suggested that maybe I think of it less as him pushing me away and more that he just needs that extra resistance/sensory input of pushing into something. I feel like this is not just a good explanation for his nursing acrobatics but also for his behavior in general. He pushes me (literally and metaphorically) because he knows I'm not going to move.

And it does help, to think of it that way, but at the same time it doesn't change much. It doesn't change the fact that it's utterly exhausting when you're the one solid thing in a universe that somebody else finds utterly confusing and unpredictable.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Pregnancy info dump 23-27 weeks

Previous pregnancy posts: 7-15 weeks and the anatomy scan.

23 weeks:

I had an appointment with J the nurse practitioner (not to be confused with M the nurse practitioner). There was also a student nurse there who came in first to do her own exam. I suspected based on movement patterns that the baby had flipped head-down since the anatomy scan and the Doppler did pick up her heart rate fairly low. Neither of the NPs made an official guess about her position, though. The student nurse measured my fundal height, which might be the only time this pregnancy I get a proper one with a tape measure and everything. :p Dr. B always just eyeballs it. (Or hands it, I guess? Since he's doing it more by feel than anything else.) Then she asked if I had any questions and I apologized that I did not, since if I did I would have loved to give her the opportunity to practice answering them. (I have had a fondness for students ever since Tad was delivered by a resident. Ask me questions, students! I have things to teach you!)

J the NP came in after that but that was very brief since of course she was just double-checking that I didn't have any questions or issues left over. I mentioned that I was tired but "I think that's more a side effect of my first pregnancy," gesturing to Tad. (Who was sitting in the next chair over playing on the tablet.) She thought that was pretty amusing.

24 week belly shot with toddler photobomb

27 weeks:

I had my 1-hour glucose test at this appointment. Conveniently, Dr. B's office allows you to take the drink home with you, refrigerate it (maybe this is why I find it so much less gag-worthy than most other people report?), drink it, and then report the time at which you drank it to the receptionist.

I think I timed to to be something like 45 minutes before the start of my appointment so it must have been a speedy day because Dr. B was already in the room by the time the medical assistant came to draw my blood. He suggested distracting me by doing the Doppler at the same time, so that's what we did.

Baby was indeed head-down, as I suspected, but kind of oblique, with her head on my left hip and her hindquarters over on the right side. Her heart rate was in the 150s, which is about where it usually is. During this time Dr. B referred to the baby as "he" a few times but I didn't bother to correct it. Meanwhile, Tad was quietly playing games on my tablet but as soon as the Doppler found the heartbeat he looked up curiously. I said something like, "Can you hear baby sister's heartbeat?" and Dr. B apologized, saying, "See, I told you I was going to forget." I said that "I don't mind if my gynecologist is a little bit forgetful" and he laughed and then told a story about his dad, who was also an Ob/Gyn, having a patient say hi to him out in public and replying, "Oh, hi, [name], I didn't recognize you with clothes on!" My Dr. B was 13 at the time and basically died of embarrassment to have his dad talking about such things.

Me: "I think we all find our parents embarrassing when we're 13."

Dr. B: "What I can't figure out is why my daughters find me embarrassing."

Having been a teenage girl, I can totally figure that one out. :p

After that we sat down and I talked about some preliminary birth related questions. First I mentioned that labor with Tad had been pretty fast and asked what my guidelines should be for going in. I can't actually remember what they were (oops) but I do remember he said, "The part where you get to the hospital at five or six centimeters, that's when I should leave." (Last time, as you may recall, he left for the hospital when I was at eight and that turned out to be not enough warning!)

We also talked about the postpartum hemorrhage I had last time and I asked whether he thought I should add a provision to my birth plan for doing Pitocin immediately rather than taking a wait-and-see approach. He said, "I think that would be a good idea," which is remarkable because pretty much every other time I've asked for his opinion he's said something like, "We can work with whatever you prefer." I find it reassuring that he's taking hemorrhage prevention that seriously, since it still kind of unnerves me almost three years later (despite the fact that it really was a pretty small hemorrhage and easily resolved).


Tune in next time to find out whether or not I passed that 1-hour glucose screen!