Feb 4, 2010

Week 39: Doctor's Visit

Today I had another Doctor's visit and my first internal exam! :) Oh, to clarify, I am IN my 39th week, so I have 38 weeks down... I always feel like it's probably confusing how I post. When I started, I was ambitious with each week and now I feel a bit silly about that- hehe.

I did all the normal stuff- urine sample, blood pressure (good), then stripped from the waist down. I had a male doctor today (in the practice there are 2 females and 4 male doctors), but I'm good with all of the guys. I have an overall preference for female doctors- particularly with OBY/GNs- because they usually know better what things feel like, but with this practice I have found EVERYONE to be really fantastic! Great bedside manners, very gentle, pretty go-with-the-flow people :) And the guy who I met with today is from California (yay! hehe) and he also is very active with the blood cord donation council at Fairfax Hospital- which I think is pretty cool.

Anyways, because it was a male doctor, the female nurse stayed in during the internal exam (as did my husband). To start with, we listed to the heart (good), he measured my uterus and then felt around to guess about how big he thinks Baby H is. His guess what that she is around 7-7.5 pounds NOW and so maybe 8 pounds by next week/delivery. I actually was not scared by this- I think I'm so big I was almost hoping she WOULDN'T be 6 pounds because that basically would be I'm that much heavier- lol. Just kidding :) But, I am rather pleased by her weight as it doesn't seem TOO big and certainly not small. We'll see how she is when she is born.

So, he then started the intern, which was really just him feeling around with his fingers. I didn't find it that uncomfortable and he said 'ok, a bunch of pressure,' but I really didn't feel too much. Of course, I usually don't have problems with my yearly exams, so maybe that makes a difference. Anyways, he felt in and... I'm starting to thin and I'm not dilated at all!

I'm actually not as disappointed by this as I thought I'd be. I think if it was that way last week, when I was getting so many harder contractions and back pain and all that stuff, I would have been disappointed, but I haven't been feeling that way this week. So, I haven't been feeling like I would have anything 'going on' down there. I think it's weird that I felt so much stuff pretty much for the few weeks BEFORE this week, but ah well. :) (don't get me wrong, I'm sore and tired and all that, but the back aches and really hard pre-contractions or whatever kinda' slowed down)

So, I'm still just waiting! My mom is planning to fly out Feb 12 which should still work fine. If nothing is going on by my due date of Feb 16, they are going to wait until the week of Feb 22 or even Mar 1-3 to induce me. So, no matter what- I will have a baby soon! :)
Side note- as you can sort of see in my photo... I now have stretch marks on my belly :( I went until about week 36 I think with a clear belly (ok, 1-2 marks after week 28) and then it just exploded! So, I now have stretch marks on my tights/butt (those I got early on), my breasts (not too bad, whew!) and my belly (grrr). And this week my belly button went from really shallow to..... ok- I don't think it's an 'outie,' but it's not an innie. It's just kinda' not there anymore... lol

Feb 2, 2010

Classy Baby Diaper Cakes

Like many of you, the diaper cake is such a cute and fun gift to get/give to an expecting mom. So far I have been lucky enough to get 2- one from my student workers and one from my godmother at my baby shower in November. AND THEN today I got this BEAUTIFUL diaper cake from Classy Baby Diaper Cakes!!!

The two other diaper cakes I got were your basic rolled diapers in 3 tiers with some washcloths/pacifiers here and there. A totally different kind of cake from the Classy Baby Diaper Cake! This cake is not only SOOO beautiful, but it comes with so much more thought and love! I was immediately touched by the obvious thought and work that went into making it!

So, the cake arrived today in a good-sized box, packaged with form popcorn so as not to damage the cake. I just had to pull the cake out and - viola! I had my Baby Diaper Cake. :)

So, it's beautiful to start. Then, I took off the netting and started to look around the cake. What great detail with the little sticker things on the ribbon; the gift items are so sweet and perfect for both mom and baby; and everything is put together so tight so that you aren't afraid that anything may fall apart before displaying it for everyone.

Of course, I didn't wait and started to take it off (after taking pictures) to discover the bits and pieces. I must say it again- this was put together so well and with such love and care! I really haven't seen a cake like this (and seriously- I have a few friends who have been pregnant recently and I'm leaving with the best cake! lol)! Also, I really like that the diapers are Pampers- the other diapers I have been getting are Luvs and, to be honest, I have hear much better things about Pampers and Huggies diapers...

Anyways, I think that pictures of everything will better describe how amazing this cake is, so here you go!

The cake in it's netting...

Outside the netting

From the top- a beautiful flower and baby barrette attached to it :)

Detail of top layer with cute ribbon and hippo button :)

Close-up of side of cake...

All the different parts: 3 tiers of diapers, 2 burping cloths, a receiving blanket, very soft stuffed giraffe, Johnson's baby bar, sippy cup (with 'love' recipe), "The Miracle in a Mother's Hug" book, pink flower, teething ring, rattle, pink barrette, pretty boa and ribbon that was wrapped around everything and instructions on how to get to everything :)

Detail of flower, book, teething ring, barrette, sippy cup

Detail of diapers, stuffed giraffe :)

Detail of rattle, burping cloths, receiving blanket

So, if you are interested in getting/giving a BEAUTIFUL Baby Diaper Cake- I totally recommend the Classy Baby Diaper Cakes!!!

Jan 26, 2010

Week 38: the waiting game and aches and pains

Ok- I just started week 38, but I'm sure this will continue :) For the past 2 days, I have gotten a bunch of unhappiness! :( As in, my lower back just aches and it won't go away! How not cool is that? I can't figure a way to get more comfortable and so I move between leaning back and sitting forward in my chair. Rocking side to side sometimes helps to.

Before, if I got back pain, if I moved or rocked, it would ease up and go away. Makes me think this is ALL baby mood related :) Now, I think that she is just so low that she is probably uncomfortable all the time and making me the same!

It's funny because every day she seems to go lower and lower. My belly looks a bit like she has also slide forward even more - like my belly is now almost 'folding' over my pelvic bone (does that make sense?). I also am getting stronger and more consistent Braxton Hick contractions. Those aren't really uncomfortable - just the very strong tightening of my stomach. I have been feeling those probably since week... 30? 32? but now they will come in groups. Kinda' fun actually because it makes me think things are moving along as they should (like I said, they don't hurt). I notice them more because they do happen more often, feel even tighter than before and sometimes afterwards like I just did a bunch of sit ups! :)

The thing that has been driving me nuts is this whole 'waiting game.' I mean, we just don't know when she will come. I'm in that zone where they won't stop labor if it starts - she is now full term! Yay! So, we are all set at home (well, I need to do some more laundry in my room and get some things out of the guest room for my mom and sister, but basically all set), but what is driving me nuts is my work.

As I have been writing on Twitter, my boss is uber supportive and is letting me work from home - THANK GOODNESS! I seriously don't know how I would do if I had to go into work these days, the way I'm feeling! Anyways, I had pretty much finished up a bunch of stuff last week and now am working on 'projects' at home (which, are basically stuff my boss and I have been putting off and now I have an excuse to do only them- blah). The weird thing to me is how to keep working, when I could in theory go into labor any day! It's just so odd and makes me feel like at some point I should just stop working... of course, then I have to use my vacation and I want to save that up because I need to use 15 days before my short-term disability starts and then I want some left over in case I want to stay home longer after that is up!

How has anyone else handled this? I think I'm going to start sending him what I have done each day; in case something happens and I go into labor... I want to make sure he gets the work! It's just so odd to me to be in this neither here, nor there situation...

Otherwise - ONLY 3 WEEKS LEFT!!! (in theory)

... I feel like she will come sooner, although I also figure every first-time mom feels that way, lol.

Week 37: Pediatrician Visit

So, around week 35 I guess, my doctor game me a list of Pediatricians in the area and told me to go ahead and pick one out. I know that it's important to find a Pediatrician that I like, especially considering how often I would be seeing them that first year, but I don't really feel comfortable doing 'interviews.' I mean; do you really think they would say something so far off that you would think "Oh, they are a bad doctor who I don't want my kid going to"??!!

We narrowed down the list and then decided on a group practice (I like group practices!), who my OB/GYN seems to really like anyways. They had a decent webpage (some info seemed old, but it was actually helpful I thought) and looking at 'reviews' online, they seemed good. So, I called to set things up (That seemed to be what we had to do, right?). However, the nurse wouldn't just set us up; I had to come into their monthly group introduction. Ok, ok - I suppose a group meeting would be ok...

Actually - the group meeting was great! There was quite a bit of people there which surprised me- maybe 9 couples or so. We sat together in their lobby and met with one of the Doctors from the practice. We got a packet of information to start off, with pamphlets about "Your and Your Pediatrician" and baby sleeping and the like, as well as their offer information like expected visits for the first 6 years (with a list of shots and other tests) their hours, a breast-feeding record sheet, list of accepted insurance, articles about nursing/shots/breastfeeding and support groups.

The doctor was very candid with the group of us and went over the practice and basic info, then what happens at the hospital- which I found SUPER helpful! Apparently, we don't even 'register' with a doctor before going to the hospital- we just show up and give the hospital a name and they call the doctor to us... very causal, lol. But, the doctor went over the tests, how long the hospital stay is, the fact that because most people leave within 36 hours, they have the babies come back into the office at 4 days instead of waiting 2 weeks (like he said- how can they REALLY tell how the baby is after such a short period of time?), shots given at birth, how they make their round and the like. It was very helpful!

The next FABULOUS thing to learn was that this practice has their own nursing consultant on staff who is available to help us with breastfeeding. And she sometimes can even come to your home, if need be! She also heads a few support groups - a great plus to know it is there, even though I'm usually not inclined to use those type of services.

The other good thing, although I'm sure many offices have something similar - they have Walk-in Sick Clinic hours in the early morning every day and on Saturday. This is nice because sometimes I'm sure you just want to come in and SEE someone, rather than call. Oh! On that note - the calls during office hours are free- after hours it is $15 unless we just saw them that day. And he was very good about explaining what happens on Sundays for sick patients. Basically, he said that if it's something normal, they will give the regular advice or set up an appointment. If it's something that is more serious - like an ear infection- he doesn't like to prescribe anything without seeing the baby (makes sense to me). However, since it's Sunday and they are mostly doing hospital rounds, they will usually send you to the emergency room instead of seeing the baby themselves. That way you get the most immediate care. I think that makes sense - he says sometimes they can stop by the office to see the baby, but in most cases it's better for everyone to just go to the emergency room for the most immediate care.

So, I was overall pretty happy with the office visit and the doctor we met with. The office itself was clean and had all the 'normal' stuff that the articles and webpages online say they should have: separate areas for sick and non-sick patients (they also normally do sick patient appointments in the morning and 'well' visits in the afternoon), clean, etc.

Yay! We have our doctor! And if we decide we don't like the practice; we'll switch to someone else ;)

Jan 19, 2010

Week 37: Doctor's Visit

I have now moved on to weekly doctor's visits! This past one was pretty much the same old, same old, with the addition of the Group B Strep Test. I had heard about that test and some people find it unpleasant, but I didn't have any discomfort. I had to take off my pants and she just swabbed by v*gina and an*s - pretty easy and not invasive at all.

I was back to being with one of the two females doctors in the group and I decided that while she is nice, she just is not quite as talkative as the others. And I really wanted to just hear more. Even though I don't really have questions and there is not much to say that I haven't really read; I kinda' just want to hear everything from her as the doctor. So, I left and was actually a bit depressed :( Not nice...

I guess what I really wanted to hear was some sort of guess about the size of the baby, when I might go into labor - that sort of thing. I understand them not wanting to say anything, but I won't hold them to it- honest! hehe Everyone around me is saying that I'm pretty big and they think since I dropped about 2 weeks ago that I will go into labor early, although I'm not counting on that either. I just think it would be almost comforting to hear something; even if it's wrong.

Ah well. Same old, same old. It's the waiting game now...

Jan 14, 2010

Week 36: Nesting & then exaustion

Yay! I'm in week 36 of my pregnancy and my baby is the size of... a melon!!! :)

It's funny because everyone thinks that I am pretty much ready to give birth now... makes me feel like I should give birth early! hehe

Anyways, this past week has been interesting as I totally went through 'nesting' and am now back to exhaustion.

So, it has been interesting to hear different people talk about 'nesting.' It was mostly annoying because if I did anything related to cleaning, I would hear "oh, you're nesting!" Because, putting my own trash away is not something I normally do...? Anyways, over the weekend, I feel like I went through what I more traditionally hear about when I hear of 'nesting.' That is, all of a sudden I really did have this burst of energy specifically aimed at cleaning up my house! No, it's not sterile now or anything, but the energy I felt was so nice and refreshing and it was interesting how I was determined to not have the dishes/laundry/mail pile up! :) I mostly enjoyed the energy part...

Then, after 3 days of this energy, I hit exhaustion again :( I have been Sooooooo tired! I feel so useless at work because I am tired and apparently can't talk that great. I have talked with someone about a project and then had to go back with follow-up questions because I just couldn't remember what we JUST said!! It's amazing and I'm soooo lucky my boss is an awesome person, because I feel like a horrible employee right now. I mean - I HAVE A MONTH LEFT UNTIL MY DUE DATE!!!

Again, due to my amazing boss, I get to now work part at home and part in the office. It's kinda' funny because I have pretty much gotten done everything that I wanted to before I went on leave and had to ask my boss the other day for projects because... I don't want to START anything at this point! It's such an odd situation to be in. I don't like it, but it is what it is...

I feel like baby H will be born in the next 2 weeks, but I have a feeling everyone feels that way at the end like this. I don't have any internal exams until the last week of January, so I have no idea if things are 'moving.' Of course, it sounds like even if they ARE, it doesn't necessarily mean that labor is coming any sooner... humph. Ah well; things are what they are! :) Wish me luck in my final month!

After about 3 days of that, I have gone back to exaustion. Part of that can be due to the fact that I'm at work and

Jan 11, 2010

Week 35: Aches and Pregnancy questions

So, to go off my last posting; my hips are starting to feel very disconnected... I know, that is a good thing, but it's kinda' annoying until I give birth! hehehe

It was funny because I go between being pretty tire and very awake and active. Saturday, I was pretty tired, but Sunday I was very active and cleaning a whole bunch. I am proud of myself - I have kept the house pretty clean! I think I can now define what I am doing as "nesting." I usually am really not this good about cleaning! :)

So, I love looking at other blogs and copying their stuff ;) I saw on this blog a list of Pregnancy questions and thought I'd give it a try...

How did you find out you were pregnant?
Home Pregnancy Test. I did have a feeling though by that time - I was all of a sudden eating all this cheese! (late at night too!)

What kind of Pregnancy test did you take?
Rite Aid, First Response, Digital Blue (or something like that)

How many?
I believe 4 at first, then I was taking a test every week probably until about week 6-7 (until I saw the doctor)

What were your 1st symptoms?
Craving cheese... late at night.

Who did you tell first?
My husband

Who was with you when you found out?
By myself- I took the test and then waited another day and took another test (just to be sure) and THEN told my husband (I think it was only 2 days; I was probably planning to wait more, but didn't happen)

My 1st reaction:
I suppose disbelief. We weren't really trying or not trying and I didn't think it would happen so fast. But, excited. (I finally put the test to good use... you know, you test a bunch when it COULD happen!)

Was your baby planned?
Pretty much

When was the baby conceived?
I have no idea - seems like end of May...? I assume in our room ;)

How far were you when you found out?
Apparently only 4 weeks.

How did your parents react?
Very excited!

My baby

Due Date: February 16, 2010

Do you know the sex? Girl

Any names? Yep; we knew the name going in. My husband is from Jordan and so they all pretty much have the baby names down by the time they are 13-14 years old. :) hehehe It's kinda' an interesting cultural thing- babies and families are HUGE in the Middle East (seriously, you haven't seen family connections like with someone from the Middle East!). He feels bad because he know it looks like I don't have a choice, but I didn't have any names in mind and I like his names! :) For this blog, it's Baby H... you only get the first initial ;P The middle name is my husband's first name (again, cultural thing- you always know EXACTLY what family you are in - the last name = same family, the middle name helps you see what part because going off the last name you can literally have tens of thousands of 'family')

Any Ultrasounds? 1st appointment (7-8 weeks); 1st trimester screening- can't remember what week that was; 19 weeks... that's it! Would love more :(

Have you heard the heart beat? Yep! Every appointment! Yay! Very comforting, especially in the later part of pregnancy.

Who do you think it will look like? Combination - both of our families have strong genes. I think she'll look at bit more like husband F

Will the baby have siblings? Nope

Have you felt the baby move? Yep - was 'pops' for such a long time and now squirms and stuff. Never really that uncomfortable - yay! :)


Did you have morning sickness? Not really

Did you have any cravings? Not really. Haven't really liked rice that much, but nothing extreme. First trimester, I did have a big aversion to drinking anything but water.

Did you have any mood swings? Not really; maybe a bit moody at times - particularly if tired.

Are you a high risk pregnancy? Nope.

Any complications? Nope.

Formula or Breastfeeding? Planning on breastfeeding and we'll see how that goes!

Have you bought anything for the baby yet? Yep.; she pretty much has everything she needs... We were lucky that family and friends gave us TONS of hand-me-downs!

When did you start to show? Hmmm, pretty early on - I'll have to check my pictures again. I was wearing maternity pants by 9 weeks, I think.

How long could you wear your regular clothes? Hehehe - not very long. I'm ALLL about comfort! And I'm glad- maternity pants are the BEST!!!

Will you keep the baby’s clothes? Until we're done with kids, sure! The, probably just a few things.

Home or Hospital? Hospital. Going to the one farther away per doctor preference, but may change with later births. :)

Natural or Medicated birth? We'll see how it feels. I'm guessing that the internal pain really hurts, but I'm curious to see how bad. :) I figure if I'm in labor over 5 hours, I'll want something to help so I can rest, as needed. If I do get medication, I plan to have them taper it off so that I can feel when it get time to push. People always say that otherwise you can't really push that effectively because you can't feel when and how things are going... This is pending I don't have a c-section, of course. I'm thinking my baby may be big (I'M big!)

Who will be in the delivery room with you? Hopefully my mom and/or sister. They are flying cross-country though, so it really will be iffy if they make it! Otherwise, just support from the nurses, I guess. I don't have any friends that I would really want there and I'm not that big into having my husband there either (I think he would make me tense and I know he won't want to see me in any pain).

Do you think you will need a C-section? I hope not, but I may because I think baby H is going to be pretty big! :) hehehe I suppose it wouldn't be so bad besides the stitches and stuff afterwards. I mean, does you v-gina still get stretched? ;)

Will you cry when you hold the baby for the 1st time? Although I'm not one to cry, I'm willing to bet I will. I think I'll be tired and just really emotional.

What’s the 1st thing you might say to the baby? Probably a prayer

Will you let anyone video tape the birth? NO!

Are you excited? Yep! A whole new life! :)

Who will help you with the baby after the birth? My mom will stay with us for about 2 weeks and my sister about 10 days. Then, about 3 months in, my mom-in law will stay with us about 2-3 months (she's coming in from Jordan when I go back to work - thank goodness for family!)

What is your favorite thing about being pregnant? Umm, I'm not sure. It's all pretty interesting! I enjoy feeling the baby, now that the movements are a lot stronger.

What is the worst thing about being pregnant? Not that thrilled with the weight gain and swollen everything, but ah well!

What’s one thing you miss doing since being pregnant? Right now? Bending over, hehe

Any days you wish you were not pregnant? Eh...

Are you ready for a baby? As much as I can be!

Do you have insurance? Yes, thank goodness

How many kids do you want? 4

Do you talk to the baby? Yep - try to get in both English and Arabic (of course, my Arabic is so basic - I feel bad for her already to have to hear me talk. It should be better when there is more people she can listen to!)

Do you still feel attractive? Yep- my husband is AWESOME! (but, now I'm so big, we have pretty much given up on sex... :( )

Have you had your baby shower yet? Had one in Nov at 27 weeks and one this weekend (at 35 weeks)

Do you like kids? Yep - always babysat and coached them...

How far along are you now? 35 weeks and counting…

Jan 6, 2010

Week 35: Doctors Appointment

I had another doctor's appointment today; I am 34 weeks down (in my 35 week, hehe) and have another appointment in 2 weeks, then start every week until Baby H is born!!!

Unfortunately, my husband was not able to come with me this time. This is the first appointment he hasn't been able to make :( Ah, well.

For the most part, it was the same old, same old: Blood pressure (good), check heartbeat (good 130 a minute I think), measure uterus, and check where baby is. Baby H is head down now and she pointed out where her backside was (to the left, which baby H seems to like).

She asked if we got a Ped doctor yet - I said yes, although I haven't actually filled the paperwork; we have a visit on Jan 18 where we get a tour of the office and ask questions. Note: What questions should you ask? They had a pretty good webpage and I guess I am going more to get a feel of their office and doctors...
She asked if we did a birth class; I said no, what did she think? She is very ok (as was the other doctor last time who asked this) with this -she said that she finds it more helpful for the dad's who don't read as much stuff as us moms :) To which, I brought up that we were NOT planning to have my husband in the room during delivery. She did ask about that - basically, she said that her and her husband (of course her husband is also a doctor) really found it very important to have him there. She said that my husband can be in the room, but doesn't have to see anything- just hear what's going on and hold the baby once it comes out. She was also concerned about me having a support partner there; I said that my mom and sister were going to try to time it right to be there, although I do know there is a pretty good chance that no one will be there (my mom is in CA and my sister is in Washington State - I'm in Virginia). Anyways, I'm not that concerned about having people I know be there for support - I think that may actually make me more tense, really... I brought it up with my husband again and said that he wouldn't be able to hang out in the hall, but would have to be in the downstairs waiting room and he was still ok with that. I'm ok with that too; It may be nice to have him there so that he could hear Baby H's first cry, however if I'm in pain, I know that he will be VERY worried and that could possibly be rather disruptive to the labor process...
Oh; I was actually the first person to say that I didn't want him there - I don't think the whole process is that 'pretty' and, again, if I'm in pain I know that my husband will be very concerned. :) This is how we are doing it; I know that other people wouldn't change it for anything! If we decide that we would like it differently, we'll keep that in mind next time :)
What else...? Oh - I have gained a bunch of weight this pregnancy and am very swollen; My doctor walks in and exclaims "You are all cheeks!" She went on to say that she was that way in her pregnancy (her baby is 18 months) and that one of her first deliveries when she joined the practice was on this women who ended up needing a c-section because she wasn't progressing. She went in to do that and she said the women was rather large... 6 weeks later, she was to see that women again for the post-delivery check-up and she walked into the room and thought that she had the wrong room, so apologized and walked out. She asked the nurses if they changed the rooms and they said, no. She walked back in and the women was like "yep, this is how I REALLY look." hehe My doctor said that it was like going from Oprah to Halle Berry! :)
Hopefully, I'll be like that. Ok - I'm been pretty mute on this, but I have gained 65 pounds so far this pregnancy. I still have 5-6 weeks to go! I averaged about 10 pounds a month; I changed my diet and stuff, but nothing really changed... :( Ah well. I know I have to work hard after I give birth and I CERTAINLY plan to breastfeed to help with this! hehehe