Sunday, 29 December 2013

I’m a Mom (12/29/13)

And loving it.  Well, the little man has arrived.  He came to us via caesarean on December 19th, 2013, born technically at 8:53 in the morning (he was still breech).  His name is Spencer Iden Reid Nottingham.  He was 6 Pounds 12 Ounces at birth. 

The birth story is still being written, but here is the short announcement, as the full story is taking a while to get the time to write.  Next week should be a little quieter, less company, and holiday season. 

We are all doing great.  We have spent a good quantity of time cuddling.  It is a great feeling.  

Friday, 13 December 2013

Week 37 plus two days (12/13/13)

Yesterday was the pivotal moment.  Baby hasn’t turned, and is still in breech.  So my doctor highly recommended a Caesarean.  We agreed, as it is best for both baby and mum when in this situation.  So I am scheduled for surgery on December 19th.  It will be with one of my doctor’s counterparts, as that day is not my doctor’s day to be at the hospital.  It is what it is.  Originally they were going to do it on the 18th, but that day Deb has dental appointments, and so, in hopes of not having to reschedule, they were able to fit me in on the 19th

This is bringing things sooner than later and I’m getting nervous about baby arriving.  What if I don’t bond with baby, or he is colicky, and I run out of patience to deal with a crying baby, what if I don’t do things right, what if Deb and I don’t agree with how I’m doing things; you know all the last minute jitters before baby arrives.  I hope I’m not alone in these feelings.  The up side is I have great support with Deb and her mum, I just hope I don’t push them away somehow when baby gets here.  

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Week 36 (12/08/13)

On Friday I went to my bi-weekly OB appointment, nothing excitingly different.   Up another .5kg, so I’m edging to the 20 pound gain mark so far, maybe a little over.  Not too bad though.  The baby’s heart beat was 160.  That is the highest I’ve seen it, but she said that is still within normal.  The big possible change is a scheduled caesarean if baby doesn’t go into position, as he is still in breech position.  She would schedule the surgery at about 38 weeks.  So that date is even closer that the EDD.  Luckily we are pretty ready, but the longer he stays in the better, for hopefully a natural birth.  We’ll see this Thursday. 

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Week 35 (11/27/13)

November has been a sad month, and I have been in a little bit of a cocoon to grief, perpetuated by pregnancy hormones.  On November 6, a few days before my medical leave from work, my grandma from England passed away.  We knew it was coming as since her stroke/heart attack her health and condition have been getting worse.  For the past month and a bit she has been out of the hospital into a home; which was a bit better for her.  Near the beginning of her stay, she did flat line and the home called the ambulance which did revive her. They were about to take her back to the hospital but she flat out refused to go.  Losing her independence was hard on her and she was just waiting to die.  At almost 92 she had lived a good life and not being able to care for herself, she was not happy. 

Originally they weren’t going to have a funeral for her, as she had outlived most of her friends and family.  But they decided to have a small ceremony.  Phil videoed it for me; which I am very appreciative of.  It was hard to watch, but this way I got to pause the speeches to blow my nose without missing anything or disrupt the ceremony.  In her later years of life she denounced religion, as she said it had become too hypocritical, so the ceremony was more based on her life.  It was beautiful.  Just writing about this is still hard, which is why I have been putting it off. 

Pregnancy wise things have been about the same.  At our last ultrasound the bean was at the 40th percentile; down from the previous.  His tummy was at 65th percentile, but he was folded in half which would skew things a bit.  His femur was at 30th percentile.  I’m not sure what his head was at though.  We did have the tech we aren’t too fond of and it seemed last time we had her, the numbers seemed a bit off too.  Alas we will see how things are continuing, as tomorrow is our next ultrasound. 

My digestion has been horrible, slight nausea starting again and nothing moving through as it should.  Since being on medical leave I haven’t been doing as much, somewhat due to moping from grief, and somewhat due to old habits of time off between work on shows.  I have been taking naps in the day, which helps to prevent zombie wife when Deb gets home from work, I am now somewhat interactive, instead of ready to pass out.  My next goal is to start some form of exercise a few times a week.  Today I got in some Wii fit minutes.  My weight gain hasn’t been bad over the past month, I’m about the same as I was at the beginning of the month, so that is nice.  My tummy is starting to look a little more pregnant.
 Week 33
Week 35

We have finally purchased a breast pump.  We ended up getting the Medela Freestyle.  We haven’t opened it yet, and will hold out until last possible moment.  There is a 45 day return option, provided it isn’t opened, from Babies R Us. 

The diaper bag for the hospital is finally packed, we picked up some diaper cream, talc option and what not, and picked out a bunch of wardrobe options to cover sizes in case he is small or big when born.  Next we really need to pack my hospital bag.

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Quick update (10/31/13)

Happy Halloween.  My belly still doesn’t quite look like a standard pregnant belly.  Alas, it is what it is.  I can definitely feel him move and that is fun. 

Lately, I have been going through a stage.  My boss calls this “Getting in Tune with my baby”.  I have been waking up at about 4:30 am and not being able to get back to sleep to closer to 5:30 or later.  This lack of sleep is effecting my work day, and training my replacement.  I’m not a good teacher/talker, and have been doing that nonstop for almost two weeks now.  Also in my sleep, I have been a snore talker, according to Deb, mumbling in my sleep while snoring lightly, sometimes coming out with full words which also wakes her up thinking I’m talking to her. 

I am now 31 Weeks and one day (or 31 weeks on Friday per the ultrasound people, but OB sticks to a January 1 due date.)  I am in the single digit countdowns and Deb is convinced little one will come early.  For my sister, at least one, if not two, came late, so I’m not counting on early.  I’m ok with that though.  Deb is just anxious to meet the bean. 

The breast pump debate in my head is still continuing.  We have found one that is about $160 but it seems replacement parts aren’t readily available.  So if I need bigger breast shields to accommodate larger nipples than most I don’t know if it would be a possibility.  This then puts the debate on should we get the Medela.  Babies R Us is having a midnight madness sale this Friday having the hands free one on sale for $380, from $450.  I have a feeling we are just going to bite the bullet and get the Medela. 

Belly pictures.

Not a lot of change.  Very gradual I guess.  

Friday, 18 October 2013

Head Down (10/18/13)

Last night as I was falling asleep, Deb and I were cuddling, and she started to giggle, which means she felt a good kick from my stomach.  I fell asleep pretty quickly after that.  Apparently, however, the Bean was on the move.  My stomach looked like it was morphing into something else, the bean was kicking and pushing and moving.  Deb intently watched my stomach for a long time, until it settled down.  This morning I felt he was in a different position, because before now he was laying sideways (maybe that explains my troll tummy instead of prego belly).  Alas, per this morning’s ultrasound he is no longer in a breech position and is head down. 

My MIL had a slight freak about that however.  When she was pregnant with Deb’s brother he was in breech till fairly late in pregnancy.  The day after he turned, she went into labour.  So she was worried I was going to be going into labour soon.  Deb assured her that is not normally the case.  

Ultrasound 29 Weeks 2 Days (10/18/13)

Profile shot

Full Face view, eye lids and all. 

We got to see him pull his toes up to his head.  Very cute.

The bean is doing very well.  He is now in the 70th percentile.  I was very worried when I first heard this, but the doctor said that is still all good and well.  With hypertension they worry about low birth weight, so him being a bit bigger is good.  (I just hope he isn’t going to get too big.)  But I guess he just had a big growth spurt. 

And here are the two missing weeks of belly shots

Week 28 Getting thicker

Troll tummy has officially popped out, still not looking pregnant though.  As of last Saturday I have gained 17 pounds in this pregnancy.  I think tomorrow’s weigh in is going to show a bit more of a gain, I just hope not too much. 

Seeing I got some good recommendations for stuff needed before the baby on last blog post, and I am very thankful for that, I am now asking for recommendations for Breast Pumps.  I know I definitely want electric double pump, but after reviewing some of the products out there I’m more confused than ever.  My friend recommended the Medela, but after reading some reviews the ratio of them conking out after 5+ months isn’t winning, plus there seems to be a concern of getting mold in the pump/tubes.  I think I need to look at some of them hands on at stores instead of online, but I would appreciate any feedback on breast pumps.  

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Nursery (10/10/13)

Finally I have uploaded the photos from our camera.  Here is our before/after of our nursery. 

 Crib Wall Before


One of our crib bedding sets.  I know bumpers are not recommended for a new born, but we will be having our little bean sleep in our room for the first few months in a bassinet. 

Change table wall before

This is the change table wall after. 

 This change table, we were able to pick up from a garage sale for $1.00.  It needed some slight reinforcements, but Deb was very able to quickly fix it up and take off the packing tape residue.  In fact most of our nursery items are from garage sales or shop at home.  The dresser used to be Ikea Birch, we painted and then MIL got us decals from the Dollar Store.   The dresser is full of our small sized baby clothes, and the closet is full with the 3 – 12 months clothes, diapers for the first few months, along with other baby related items. 

 The baby gear storage, bassinet, exersaucer, swing, toys etc.  When baby is in here, this is where the rocker will go. 

Storage for bibs, socks, facecloths etc

This is the light switch cover we *sigh* paid full price for at Babies R Us.

The growth chart outside the door.

Even before we were pregnant, I was doing research of things you should have/shouldn’t have, must haves versus wants.  From Deb friend who is a midwife, we got a recommendation that a video monitor is very worth it, and a canopy cover for the car seat that doesn’t interfere with the handle.  In turn we purchased those items.  Can I get some feedback on recommendations for must haves for a newborn or infant from some more moms who have been through this?  We have put together a list of stuff still to purchase, which mostly includes stuff like talc, diaper cream, baby shampoo/hair brush, nursing bras, along with a few wants like a giraffe diaper stacker. 

A few people have been asking if we are having a baby shower.  When we say no, we get some of the weirdest looks.  We might be wavering on that, and doing something like a pot luck, but then again, maybe not.  I’d also appreciate input into baby shower pros/cons.  The usual is gifting, but we have pretty much all ready provided what we need, we have more clothes than I’m sure we’ll need.  The other side of things is visiting and friends/family meeting the baby.  We get fairly overwhelmed having a lot of people over, but having a constant stream of one on one meet ups day after day seems a bit daunting as well.  

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

28 Weeks (10/09/13)

What an interesting week of appointments.  On September 29 I went in for my blood work to be done for Crohn’s and Gestational Diabetes.  On Tuesday I get a call from my general physician, Dr B.  I got stressed to no end thinking he got the results and is calling me in sooner than seeing my OB because it was positive for Diabetes.  They wouldn’t tell me what it was over the phone, so I had to go in for a rush appointment.  (He was going on Vacation as of Thursday.)  So I get an appointment for the same day, had to leave work early, so did Deb because we were car pooling, and when making the appointment, I had forgotten I didn’t have the car that day.  Buggar.  We get to the appointment a bit late because of traffic, and the receptionist wasn’t too pleasant about it, even though we called to explain we would be late.  Once in with Dr B, he rushed me in because I’m anemic.  I all ready F#%*ng know that.  I’m trying various forms of iron.  Alas he had me try yet another version of supplements.  (Didn’t work).  He was looking at the paperwork from the gastrologist (Dr. W) but didn’t have the results for the Diabetes yet.  Are you kidding me, we rushed and stressed and missed work to find out something I all ready knew.  He also had concerns that I might have arthritis as something was inflamed.  At which point, I asked for a copy of my blood work.  After investigating the results, I figured it was my Crohn’s that was inflamed, and would discuss with Dr. W the following week. 

On Monday I saw my gastrologist, Dr W. for Crohn’s.  That day I was seeing two specialist at the opposite ends of the city.  The first appointment was supposed to be at 8:45, which in theory left plenty of time to get to my following appointment at 10:30.  Well, the receptionist at Dr W had double booked time and she had a meeting until 9:30.  Needless to say I didn’t get in to my appointment until 9:45.  On the upside my blood work is looking good.  The high levels of inflammation were within acceptable levels for pregnancy. 

From there I quickly made it to my next appointment, luckily traffic was good.  That is the benefits of not travelling during rush hour.  The next appointment was with the Problems in Pregnancy clinic with Dr H.  I was more excited about this appointment because my asthma is getting worse and they would be dealing with that.  Originally I thought this appointment was going to be relatively on time, and get to work at a decent time.  Nope, that was not the case.   The nurse took me in almost right on time. She did my weight, and blood pressure, both not too bad.  Then I waited for the doctor to come in.  After about 20 minutes I saw Dr H’s partner doctor who was helping that day.  We went over most of the concerning issues and questions they had. 

One of the major benefits of that appointment was, I got to get my Gestational Diabetes results two days sooner.  I do NOT have Gestational Diabetes.  Woohoo. 

The appointment went fairly well, but the partner doctor wouldn’t go over any of the options until Dr H reviewed the information.  So I had to wait again.  This time it was about an hour and a half.  By this time I was starving.  I hadn’t had any snacks, thinking this appointment would be quick, so I had just eaten breakfast.  Snicker Joe was starting to come out, as it was after 12:30 by the time the two doctors came back in.  Apparently there was a medical emergency that morning which put everything behind. 

We went over everything and the main point Dr H was drilling that I was not happy about was my weight gain.  She didn’t like that I drank my calories having prune juice with iron tablets to help with constipation.  She instantly lumped me in the horrible eater category because of my weight, and of course blamed my constipation on the fact I don’t drink enough water.  I do know I need to get more exercise, but as my asthma is getting worse it is getting even harder to want to walk with the anticipation of a major coughing fit.  Not once did she ask how much I actually drink, nor did she ask what it was I eat on a regular basis.  The hopeful silver lining to this appointment was the fact they are changing up my inhalers to improve my asthma, in theory. 

Once in the car I started to inhale my lunch, and ended up snacking most of the afternoon.  Changing up my morning eating routine messed up my entire day. 

From that appointment I went directly to Walmart to get the new prescriptions filled.  At Walmart they didn’t have some of the items in stock, so I needed to pick everything up the next day. 

At work I started to discuss more definite dates for my Maternity leave with my bosses.  Based on generally a clean bill of health I had figured I would be able to work until December 20th.  In my mind that was great news, almost an extra month of full income, as I had figured I would stop working December 1st due to medical leave for one reason or another.  My immediate boss was ok with things, bringing in my replacement third week in November and then us both working the month of December.  The next up boss had some slight issues with the scheduling of things and not getting proper notice if I go on medical leave if needed, which is why we wanted to bring in my replacement as early as we had figured.  After a slight brief discussion the higher up boss left having to “noodle” about this, meaning she had to talk to a lawyer and or read up on medical leave.  I wasn’t having the best of days and this fueled for me to be disgruntled perpetuated by pregnancy hormones.  By the time I got home I was fuming, the door wasn’t open so I had to hunt for my keys, with my hands full, which I ended up dropping things, then the dogs were jumping up and poking their claws in my leg, dinner wasn’t on the go, and even though I had been snacking most of the afternoon I wasn’t wanting to wait long for dinner.  All very trivial things that normally would have been no problem, but hormones were making a mountain out of a few small mole hills. 

We all ended up going out for dinner to a buffet and slowly I calmed down.  Needless to say we didn’t get a lot done that night.

That brings us to today’s appointment with my OB, Dr C.  My blood pressure was good, I had only gained .4kg since the last appointment, I had figured everything was good to go, and wanted to discuss maternity leave with a bit more certainty, making sure working till December 20th was ok.  As soon as I brought up leave, she said I should be stopping work now.  With high blood pressure, the more pregnant I get the worse it can be, and if it goes off the rails things can go wrong trying to get my blood pressure back to normal.  This totally blindsided me.  I mentioned I have a low stress desk job, but she thinks I should start medical leave as soon as possible.  I told her that I still had to train a replacement and probably the earliest I would be able to stop working would be early November. She agreed that it “should” be ok for me to continue to work that long, but not much longer.

Once back at work, I talked it over with my immediate boss and we came up with approximate dates to work with while talking with the higher up boss, provided my replacement can start that early.  We had called my replacement saying she got the job on Monday, and then gave tentative dates on Tuesday.  However we are now moving things up about a month.  My replacement is pretty flexible but she does have to give notice where she is working now. 

In the end, my tentative medical leave will start November 8th ish, depending on the start date of my replacement, as cautious medical leave, and so I can start to see the home nurses frequently.  Other than take my blood pressure, I’m not sure what they do.  

Here is week 27 belly photo.

The belly is starting to come in, but still mostly just look like I’ve gained weight.

Friday, 27 September 2013

26 Weeks and 2 days (09/27/13)

26 Weeks and 2 days (09/27/13)

Depending on whom you ask, some say today is 26 weeks, some say it is 26 weeks and 4 days.  We are sticking with 26 weeks and 2 days.  Here is the latest belly picture.  I will say, I think my boobs are outgrowing my belly. 

Don't I look chipper that morning.

As of this morning, they officially leak, ever so slightly.  Up till now, I have been noticing crystals of dried milk occasionally.  This morning I was looking to get rid of any possible crystals, and got milk instead.  Sorry if that was a little graphic.  I’m really disappointed I won’t be able to donate to the Calgary Milk Bank because of the asthma medication I am on. 

Today I had my next ultrasound.  Here are the latest and greatest pictures.

Profile picture

Profile showing a little leg

Smooshy Face Yawn

Smooshy Face mouth closed

No pictures please

Big foot

Right now, well as of this morning, he was laying sideways, technically breach, his bum on my left side, and everything else on the right, legs, feet, hands and head. 

As far as his measurements, he is about 860 grams, and almost spot on the 50th percentile.   So once again I need to keep doing what I have been doing, baby bean is doing very well.  We are that much closer to the 28 week mark which is when Deb will breathe easier with the knowledge that babies born after 28 weeks have a 90-95% survival rate.  Per the chart below we are all ready at the 80% success rate.  But the longer he stays in there the better at this point. 

Length of Pregnancy
Likelihood of Survival
23 weeks
24 weeks
25 weeks
26 weeks
27 weeks
28-31 weeks
32-33 weeks
34+ weeks
Almost as likely as a full-term baby
Sources: March of Dimes, Quint Boenker Preemie Survival Foundation

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

An Article Worth Sharing (09/24/13)

On Buzzfeed I was reading about Miley Cyrus's rolling stones interview.  On one of the pictures it showed the cover of the Rolling Stones mag featuring her interview.  A side story on the cover was "War on Gay Teens".  This caught my eye enough that I had to Google it, even before finishing reading about Miley. 
This is a link to the article

As far as my limited life as a realized lesbian, I have been mostly sheltered when it comes to bullying and harassment.  I consider myself blessed, especially after reading this article.  It is something that Deb and I worry for about our little bean, when he starts attending school.  We are hoping to be prepared to help him battle any bullying he may come across, having two moms, but we do pray he doesn’t come against angst this overwhelming.  Calgary isn’t the most progressive city when it comes to LGBT community, but I believe in my slightly naive heart things aren’t that bad. 
Being gay is not a sin, nor a choice.  For those of us to enjoyed male company in their lifetime, it doesn't change the fact that we are attracted to women as well, if not more so.  I will say there are many times when hearing about husbands/boyfriends being typical men, I am glad I have ended up where I am today, not that I'm a man hater, just less tolerant I guess.  People don't choose who they fall in love with; it is a matter of the heart.  

The area that this article mentions is swayed by heavy religion stuck in the middle ages.  Even the Pope is changing the church views on gays, even if ever so slightly.

Quotes from the above link

Francis said in the interview that the catechism, or the Roman Catholic Church's official doctrine book, condemns homosexual acts, but he called on the Church to love gays and lesbians, who "must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity."  
In a much quoted sentence from the interview, Francis said, "Religion has the right to express its opinion in the service of the people, but God in creation has set us free:  it is not possible to interfere spiritually in the life of a person."  

 "If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge him?" said Francis to reporters on board a plane returning from Brazil.  "The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains this very well. It says they should not be marginalized because of this (orientation) but that they must be integrated into society."

Hopefully this is a good change to come from the religious segregation/bigotry, and hopefully the area from the Rolling Stones article will follow suit, along with other cities worldwide.

Friday, 20 September 2013

Busy weeks (09/20/13)

I can’t believe it has been over two weeks since I have posted.  What a busy couple of weeks.  We had a visit from an old friend of Deb’s the weekend after we got back from Camping.  We had thought they were staying with us for the week leading up to as well, however with some slight confusion with their grandma they decided to stay with her.  We got a good visit in on the weekend though before they headed back to Ontario area.  They left on a very early flight, so Deb took the Sunday to head back to Golden to pick up the RV which has now been fixed.  I stayed home as I didn’t think my feet could take another long trip, they were just starting to be able to wear normal shoes again, although crocks are very comfy, not exactly office attire.  Deb’s mom was heading to visit Deb’s brother in the interior of BC so on the way through they dropped Deb off in Golden. 

The weekend following was a visit from my old friend from Fernie MJ and co.  She had two little ones at 3 months and 2.5 yr.  It was a good introduction to kids for me.  They arrived on Saturday and heading on for their Journey on Tuesday.  Monday night we did some babysitting so they could head to a concert on a date night.

The Tuesday they left was my birthday.  It was a lovely day.  My boss took me for lunch for Vietnamese food.  After work Deb and I went for a cheap buffet at a casino and played a few slots.  The food was good, the company was excellent, and it was a nice evening, even though we didn’t win. 

That brings us to today.  This weekend, we are shopping for a replacement hot tub.  Last year we bought a lemon, but in the times we used it, we really liked it.  So we have decided to do our homework this time and get a refurbished one.  Deb’s knees are really looking forward to the hot tub again.  I am too.  And I know I am not supposed to use a hot tub, but I have done some homework.  Most people keep their hot tub around 103-104 f.  And being pregnant you can’t have your body temperature reach 102 in fear of hurting the baby.  We usually keep the hot tub around 99-100f.  So I figure I should be ok to soak for 10-15 minutes at a time without raising my temperature too much.  My usual body temp is closer to 97.8 than the average 98.6.   I will confirm with the OB on Monday though, just to be on the safe side. 

Here are the two most recent pictures for side by side.

I’m beginning to wonder if taking these pictures will be worth it.   (Week 25 still needs to be taken.) There is minimal difference from the week 4 picture

 (Week 4 refresher)

In the past month or so, my head has been in a weird space.  Wondering if I will like being a mom.  Wondering if I will get a few weeks in and want to quit. Wondering if I will have the bond you’re supposed to have.  In the end I think things will be fine, but it has been a bit of a stress in my head.  For now I’m getting past that and starting to get excited.  Feeling him kick is nice, sometimes annoying but nice most of the time.  His size is affecting my ribcage.  I was very happy to see my chiropractor last week.  We have changed from going once a month two three weeks now.  Hopefully I won’t be as crooked next time. 

My blood pressure seems to be creeping up, but then again I can’t seem to sit for a period of time before taking my BP otherwise my machine won’t register.  Hopefully it is good still on Monday.  Next week I see my OB again, and then on Friday we get to see the baby again on an ultrasound.