June 25, 2013

2nd Trimester is Just Around The Corner

I am 13 weeks pregnant today. It feels like it has taken an eternity to get through this 1st trimester. The 1st trimester for me has been a total mixed bag. Besides the 24/7 nausea that has plagued me, I have teetered between super overwhelmingly excited to complete shock and confusion. Tack on the constant worry? Oh yes. Past miscarriage plus a combined nearly 7 years of infertility = constant concern over every little twinge. Am I ready to be done with week 13? Hell yes. Unfortunately, as I learned the first time around, the 2nd trimester isn't magic. I may still be feeling sick for weeks to come. However, I have hope. I have made it so far.

I went in for my 1st trimester screening and genetic counseling. Part of that screening is an NT scan. What is the NT scan you ask? It is a screening via ultrasound where they determine your baby's risk for Down Syndrome, other chromosomal abnormalities as well as major congenital heart problems. Yikes, right? Many women do not even bother with this screening as they say knowing of these conditions would not affect the outcome (i.e. going to full term and keeping the baby vs. termination). While I agree to an extent in terms of knowing we will keep the baby no matter what, I also feel like it is important for us to be educated as well. I would want to be fully prepared to parent a child with special needs. Also with these results, we could know ahead of time whether or not we'll need PICU care or even surgery for our baby at birth. My husband and I are planners, so it is important for us to have all the facts about our baby as early as possible. Should our NT scan come out with unfavorable results, we will likely do further testing to know exactly what is happening. There is amazingly cool technology available today where they can take a blood draw from the mother and be able to separate the fetal blood from the mother's blood thus being able to test the baby's blood for these abnormalities. They can also determine the baby's gender from this blood draw! I find this absolutely intriguing and amazing. While it would be awesome to know definitively early on what the gender is, our want and our hope is that the NT will show us at a very low risk and we can simply move on with a happy, healthy pregnancy. In my head, I look at this as just another excuse to see my little nugget. We will have our results later this week.

Without further ado... Meet my miraculous little nugget. No guesses on gender. Baby wasn't willing to show even a little bit of its goods. We will find out that fabulous nugget of information on August 8.



On a more positive note, I have been feeling better. My good days have started to outnumber the bad ones. I am working on my self-image. Gaining weight and just "looking" bigger has kind of done a number on me so I am embracing my growing belly and no longer hiding it. I desperately need more maternity clothes but despise the thought of spending a lot of money on them. Even Target seems expensive. The one thing that has really changed in this week number 12 is my hunger. OH my god. I am like a bottomless pit! Now that I have been feeling better I am REALLY trying hard to focus on making smart choices. I kid you not- I am hungry within 30 minutes of eating and if I don't eat? My stomach rumbles and the nausea makes a return. Overall, I am ridiculously excited. We announced on Facebook (which is a big deal because that's a lot of people to tell). I feel FREE to be able to talk abou this now! My husband is over the moon. Even Jackson is excited and tries to "listen" to the baby in my tummy (which then he hears my tummy rumble and assumes the baby is making weird noises. Best mommy trick ever). He did say that he doesn't want to see the baby come out of my tummy. Thank god for that.

I'm a little behind on my belly pics, but here is week 11.
Yes... I was in a dressing room shopping for maternity clothes. Bought those pants. 
And... yes, I missed week 12, but here is week 13.

Kind of hard to see.. but yeah, the belly is definitely expanding! 

Now, I can't be forgetting about baby!! He or she is the size of a peach this week! So tiny! (So why am I so big??? LOL)



June 18, 2013

How Did This Happen?

No I'm not asking how I got pregnant. Pretty sure I got the memo on that.

I'm asking how my sweet baby boy got so big, so quickly! He graduated from Pre-Kindergarten a week and a half ago and oh, the pregnant lady hormones were a flowin' (a.k.a. I cried a lot). I can hardly believe he will be starting Kindergarten in the fall. It is... surreal.

Walking down the aisle. Cue mommy tears. 
Accepting his diploma. More tears. 
He posed after getting his diploma. For a long time. Cue laughter. From everyone. 
His best friend. They have been in the same class since they were infants. 
I'm so proud of him. He has grown up so much, learned so much and is the greatest blessing in my life. I am often overwhelmed by how much I love him. I love being a mommy. I love being his mommy.


June 06, 2013

Oh The Guilt!

The one thing I have encountered with this pregnancy that I don't ever remember having with number 1 is the overwhelming guilt I feel all the time.

Infertile Guilt
First and foremost, I have infertile guilt. That is, the guilt that comes with getting pregnant against all odds when so many others cannot. Those friends of mine both IRL and online who have struggled who have to endure yet another success story... I feel an overwhelming amount of guilt over my miraculous, "how the hell did this happen" pregnancy. I didn't try. I didn't go through months or even years of grueling infertility treatment. I have no magic potion for how I got pregnant (other than the good old fashioned unprotected sex method). No matter how much I am celebrating, I still cannot help but just feel... sad. As for me, over the last four years, I was undeniably jealous of anyone who was pregnant no matter how easy or difficult. However, I never showed it on the outside. There was another part of me who was thrilled whenever I hear of another infertile getting pregnant or even those who have successfully adopted- they always gave me so much hope. There is no easy way to ever announce to these people that you were able to get pregnant against all reason, medicine, science. I know for me, I hated it when anyone walked on eggshells around me. I'm not made of glass nor have I ever been bitter. When one of my best friends, also infertile like me, got pregnant (against all odds, reason, science) I was beyond thrilled for her. For real. All I can do is throw it out there. No sugarcoating. No walking on eggshells. I can only hope that my infertile friends will not hate me for my luck. The guilt is kind of endless in this area.

Work Guilt
No doubt being sick 24/7 has taken a toll on my work. As I sit like a zombie most days just trying not to barf all over my desk, I know that my productivity and motivation has crumbled. My incredible boss has been most understanding (she has 3 young children of her own), but that doesn't make me feel any less guilty for not being able to pull my own weight. I absolutely love my job and want to do well here so I am frustrated with myself that I have been less than stellar with my performance. I am praying to be able to turn this around soon.

Family Guilt 
More than all the other guilt is my family guilt. By the time I get home from work at the end of the day, all I can think about is plopping my ass down on my couch with a big blanket and zoning out. I don't want to eat. I don't want to play. I don't want to clean. Seriously- God Bless my amazing husband for putting up with me. He has taken over so much of the household chores to allow me to be a pregnant zombie. He has been taking the kiddo to swimming and soccer (swimming more importantly because the heat and smell of the swim school does NOT sit well with me). He has been entertaining Jackson more often than not. But, I feel guilty. I should be doing these things. I don't want them to think I'm using the pregnancy as an excuse to checkout. However, my misery is real and I apologize endlessly for my lack of attentiveness.

On a Positive Note
At 10.5 weeks I do feel like the morning sickness is turning a corner which is wonderful considering I was sick until at least 25 weeks with Jack. I now have good days and bad days. I recognize what my nausea triggers are and try to avoid them like the plague. I take full advantage when I am feeling good; however, that often means that I overdo it a bit too (like walking the 5K Electric Run last Friday followed by soccer and a school function the very next morning. Am I nuts?). I do feel like I am coming out of the fog and it is nice to be able to regain a little focus on the things that matter most like family and work.

Photo from the Electric Run in St. Paul- this was my last paid for running event of 2013. Big, HUGE thanks to my girls for walking it with me. Love you!


I did have an OB checkup yesterday and it was fantastic! I was insanely nervous heading in there. Not knowing if they would be able to find the heartbeat. Being rushed to ultrasound. I didn't want to go through it. I didn't even want to think it. To my delight, my NP found the heartbeat within seconds and I swear, it was the sweetest sound a mama-to-be can ever hear. I just closed my eyes and relished in the moment. Nugget was moving around playing a little hide and seek with the doppler, but we got a good catch and listened for up to about a minute. Heart rate was at 160 and everything is going perfectly. I'm pretty happy (and a little surprised) that I have not gained any weight so far given my horrific diet of pretzels and potato chips.

So despite my sickness woes and overwhelming guilt, I feel ridiculously blessed and beyond excited about our growing family!

10 Week Belly Pic (still mostly bloat... but definitely at the point of not being able to hide it anymore):



 
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