Thursday, March 26, 2009

A peek back in time

Seriously, how cute is this face?!?

Friday, March 20, 2009

Capturing Memories, Part Two

The First Trimester
aka The Period In Which You Feel Like You Have The Flu

That's exactly what it felt like to me. I'd have hours when I felt ok and then the queasiness would creep up on me. Having an empty stomach was the worst feeling in the world. For the first two weeks that I knew I was pregnant, I pretty much existed solely on Saltine crackers, macaroni & cheese, and ginger ale. Meat and eggs completely lurched my stomach. Slowly, I found that salads were on the list of things my tummy would tolerate, but only with Italian dressing (not my favorite usually). Oranges, however, were not on the list. Smoothies I could do, as long as they were yogurt based, and I had one almost every day. I was amazed at how many of my favorite foods no longer appealed to me and surprised at the things I was craving. As the weeks passed, the queasiness slowly faded and by week 12 I was pretty much done with morning sickness.

I was exhausted in my first trimester. This is a fatigue that goes beyond just wishing for a nap. It's better described as being so tired that you feel it deep in your bones. It's a mixture of sleepiness and fatigue-- think of how you might feel if you stayed up all night long and then ran a marathon. I felt like that every single day. I could not get through a day without a nap and I was sleeping at least ten hours every night. My days were spent on the sofa (or the floor or another sitting/laying location). Exercise? No way. I was too tired to even drive. We saved a ton of money on gas that first month because I didn't go anywhere!

Other symptoms:
Gassy -- This was horrifying for me because I'm just not a person who passes gas... I'd rather die than pass gas in front of another human being. Sadly, try though I might, I found that I couldn't always control it... Ugh!

Constipation -- More fun.

Cramping -- I felt pulling/cramping/aching in my abdomen almost my entire first trimester, which I read was normal but it still made me anxious.

Headaches -- Oh this was the WORST for me. Sometime Tylenol helped and other times not so much. It was awful because nothing seemed to help.

Sinus stuffiness/dryness - What in the world does this have to do with pregnancy?? It just irritates me because it's just one more thing to prevent good sleep.

Urinating frequently -- Speaking of things that prevent good sleep, this was also a culprit for me. Having always been a good drinker, I tend to normally visit the restroom more frequently than most people so I didn't really notice a difference during the day. At night was a different story altogether.

Moodiness -- Can you say cranky?? It's amazing I'm still married.

Breast tenderness -- One of the first symptoms to pop up for me, I was tender for weeks before I even knew I was pregnant.

Doesn't it sound like fun? It wasn't really all that horrible, but it wasn't super fun either ;)

The First Doctor's Visit

What I want to remember from this visit is the emotions I felt during the ultrasound. The doctor did a trans-vaginal ultrasound and I remember gasping as the image of our baby came onto the screen. As soon as the doctor could see the beating heart, she sent for my husband. Once he came in, the doctor did her best to explain what we were seeing. Whatever she said went in one ear and out the other. I was just glued to that image on the screen. Our miracle. Then the doctor turned on the sound and pinpointed the heartbeat for us. At that sound, the tears just streamed down my face. The baby was healthy and safe- praise the Lord! Finally, the doctor told us that at that point we had a less than 5% chance of a miscarriage and the relief I felt with that knowledge was more than I could hold in. I'd been praying and worrying about miscarrying for two weeks and now I could rest easy. More tears.


The first trimester was a roller-coaster of emotions. I was thrilled to be pregnant, but shocked. I was happy one minute, then I was scared. I was confident, then apprehensive. I remember one afternoon I was just weeping because I realized the effect this baby would have on my relative freedom. I went from being able to go wherever I wanted, whenever I wanted to the realization that those days were long gone.I thought of all the wonderful traveling Bella and I did last year, and I just cried that I wouldn't be able to do that anymore.

There were lots of moments of tremendous joy, though, too. Announcing to friends and family that I was pregnant was one of the most fun things I've ever done. I treasure those memories, those reactions. I particularly like the tearful ones and the screaming ones.. you know who you are! I'll always remember that first trip to Barnes & Noble to look at pregnancy books the day we found out we were pregnant. I stood in the aisle filled with awe as I got my first glimpse of what the baby looked like that week. The baby was so teeny tiny and yet such a little person already!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Capturing Memories, Part One

While Bella was snoozing next to me this afternoon, I lay awake, exhausted but unable to rest my mind. That's normal for me these days. Today it occurred to me that in just a few weeks, I'll be at the half-way point in my pregnancy. It's gone by so quickly and now I'm scrambling. I don't want to forget anything about this pregnancy. This is my little miracle baby and these months of preparation are precious to me. Already the queasiness of the first couple months has begun to fade from my memory...So, forgive me if this is a little too much information, but I want to capture some of these memories before they fade away completely.

I was seven weeks and two days along in my pregnancy when I took the pregnancy test, so I already had nearly two months under my belt. Even though I was late for my cycle (which isn't unusual for me with my PCOS anyway), the three weeks prior I definitely felt like something was a little "off" but nothing so drastic as to send me running to the drugstore for a test. I was convinced I was going to begin my cycle at any minute because I was definitely crampy and had all my typical premenstrual symptoms. When I was about a week and half late I started taking naps with Bella in the afternoons. I was exhausted! I'd talk with my best friend Cheryl every couple of days and would whine periodically about the fact that I was late. Then, when I was three weeks late, I called Cheryl and asked her to describe how she felt when she was newly pregnant... I think I was just beginning to wonder if, indeed, I could actually be pregnant. The more she described how she had felt pregnant, the more I wondered. She encouraged me to take a pregnancy test, but I wasn't ready. I just couldn't face another negative test. I rationalized that I'd never been more than four weeks late, so I intended to wait until I was four weeks and two days late - just to make sure! Certainly it wouldn't hurt to wait another week or so, would it?

The next morning I asked Greg to go get bagels for breakfast because I wasn't feeling very good. When he came home with blueberry instead of cinnamon raisin, I took one look at that bagel and said "I won't eat that." Fortunately, he had also brought plain bagels, and that sounded much better, so he fixed one up for me with some sour cream. He brought it to me and I took a bite. My stomach lurched. I couldn't even chew it... the bite came right back out, I apologized profusely, and went back to bed. I lay there all day, sleeping and feeling queasy, munching on Saltine crackers and wondering. That evening was the "winter party" for Greg's office and I was in no condition to go. After he left, I drug myself out of bed and wandered into Irene's room to see if she would be willing to run to the store for me. She said "Sure, what do you need?" and I said "A pregnancy test?". She looked at me like I had two heads and said, basically, sorry, but that's too awkward... I don't know what even possessed me to ask her! Of course it's too awkward for a 16-year-old! Pregnancy insanity was already setting in! So, I put my hair in a pony tail and went to CVS. I remember standing in that aisle, overwhelmed by the selection of tests and wondering if it really made a bit of difference which one I bought (something I've wondered ever since I was twenty and began this journey). At home, I decided to wait and take the test first thing in the morning as they always recommend. I didn't say a word to Greg when he came home late that night.

The next morning was Sunday and we were in our typical before-church routine. Greg and I were chatting as we were getting ready- he was in the shower and I was puttering around in the bathroom. While we were talking, I decided to take the test. I very carefully removed the wrapper, trying to keep it quiet and talking all the while to cover any rustling noises. I took the test and as I set it down I realized that it was positive...just like that! No waiting! Everything stopped in the world. Greg was still talking but I wasn't listening anymore. The "processing line" that is supposed to let you know that the test is working hadn't even come up yet so I wondered if this one was a dud. I waited about ten seconds (or an eternity) and the processing line finally came up. Nothing else changed... it was still VERY positive.. as bold and beautiful as the one on the box. My hand was trembling as I picked up the test. I was in absolute shock. All the thoughts I'd ever had about coming up with a neat and fun way to tell my husband we were expecting went right out of my head. This was HUGE! There was no way I could wait and tell him in some unique way. I couldn't even speak!!! So, I stood there, unmoving, unblinking, until he got out of the shower. He took one look at me and asked what was wrong. I walked over to him and held up the test for him to see. He looked at it and got the biggest smile on his face. "You're pregnant. You're PREGNANT!" and then he gave me the biggest hug ever, saying "you're pregnant" over and over again in my ear. It was perfect. I think somewhere in the back of my head I was bracing for Greg to be upset. We'd see-sawed back and forth so many times on the issue of extending our family that I wasn't 100% sure of his reaction. But, it was perfect. Two hours later I got to go to church and praise God for this blessing, which was perfect timing for me! I couldn't have waited much longer!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Better Late Than Never

I know I promised these last week, but better late than never, right?

While I'm at it, I may as well post pics from Bella's first day at school (she started right after Christmas). Enjoy!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Winter Wonderland

We've got over six inches this morning and it's still falling! We're headed outside to play! I'll get pics up tonight!