Tuesday, May 29, 2007

almost 33 weeks, the update

I've got a million posts I've started, saved and discarded.

Somehow, nothing I write is coming together in the right way... I get hopelessly lost in a tangent, or it's too baby-related, or something... but I want to update.

I'm getting more and more uncomfortable by the day. I'm addicted to tums. My back is imploding. I think I have some stretch marks starting... and I'm thrilled to death with all of it.

My mom suggested I start cocoa buttering my belly to prevent the impending stretch marks from worsening and all I could think was no way - I've earned these fuckers and I want 'em.

Clearly, I am not right.

And I don't care.

I could live without the bitchiness, or the inability to be outside for more than 10 minutes without overheating, but all the other 'normal' pregnancy things are exciting to me.

Foot in my ribs? Holy shite, there's a foot IN ME!!

Painful foot in my ribs? Holy shite, that babe's growing! Actually growing!

Sore back? Check it out - my belly's grown and it's making my spine curve in funny ways!! Because Holy Shite, I've made it to the third trimester!!

Yeah, you get the idea.

And I'm not right. But I still don't care... because dammit, I've made it this far.

Monday, May 21, 2007

32 weeks & a few days..

Also known as "holy shit, how did this happen already??!"

Warning - Totally baby-related posting.

I did a few baby things this weekend.

Item #1 - I hit the yard sales, looking for tiny clothes to supplement the few things I had. Or at least the few things I thought I had.

Item #2 - I got out the smallish box labeled "baby clothes: preemie, newborn 0-3 months" that I had carefully packed away after G finally put on a few pounds.

Totally shoulda done that in reverse order.

In my memory, that smallish box contained mostly blue stuff, with an occasional gender-neutral item thrown in here or there... and maybe one newborn gown. Since, you know, I didn't like gowns til after G was born, and only bought boy-appropriate clothing 'cause we knew what his plumbing looked like before I even started shopping.

So.. when I was yard sale-ing, I bought a bunch of newborn gowns (gender neutral) and small, neutral outfits... and yeah, a few more frilly pink things I totally couldn't resist.

... and then I unpacked the box, which was far larger than expected, and discovered that when G was small, he wore a LOT of neutral outfits. And many more gowns than I realized. Not to mention, outfits that small, you can pack a buttload of 'em into one not-so-smallish box. Holy shit, that newborn sleep-deprived amnesia is a very real thing. Apparently, I had no idea what my child wore his first few months.. or how much of it I actually had.

Poor Rice... will be wearing many, many gowns. Even if he-or-she decides to dirty a gown an hour, we'll still be set for at least a day. And as for gender-neutral, I swear, I didn't realize that G wore so much green, orange, yellow & white. Even the little blue-and-white sleeper with the cute little bunny feet is way more feminine than I remembered. And I remembered it being pretty feminine - we used to call it G's Ralphie suit.

I found two outfits that are clearly 'boy'.

I have bought one onesie that's pretty boyish.

And at least half a dozen dresses now.

I am definitely hoping that Rice doesn't have outdoor plumbing, so to speak. That fabulous denim jumper with the little ladybugs and ruffled butt-cover will look a bit funny on a boy. Even if it IS blue, and fits my criteria for 'gender-neutral'. I mean, really, since it's both a dress (girly) AND blue (boyish), the two balance each other out and create a seriously neutral outfit, right?

OK, who else is thinking that maybe I shoulda found out the gender at that last ultrasound??


.. and let me repeat - holy shit.. less than 8 weeks to go.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Chicken n' dumplings...

That's what's for dinner tonight. The chicken is already simmering. It's making me hungry and it won't even be ready for a couple more hours.

I decided yesterday that we'd have chicken & dumplings tonight. It's one of my comfort foods, one that I love no matter how often I've had it, and one that I'll decide to make at the slightest provocation. The mere mention of chicken is usually enough for me to drag out the big pot and start boiling some water.

I was on the phone with a friend and she was talking about chicken, how she doesn't like it... and I got a sudden craving for dumplings.

So I'm thinking about her as I'm cooking... and thinking about her makes me think about fertility. Because she talks about it a lot.

I guess you'd call her a habitual miscarry-er. Sorry, I just can't use the phrase 'habitual aborter' however medically correct it may be. She's had a couple of ectopics, and a few miscarriages. She has no idea why. She's never had any testing done... and now that she's engaged to a man who does not want (more*) children, she is facing the prospect of a life without ever having those answers, or having a child.

Which, I guess, is her prerogative. Even if I don't understand it, it's not my decision.

But it does bother me. Especially since I can see how much it bothers her.

She's the best example of the passive approach to infertility that I know. I'm talking about the women (or men, tho I've not met any of those) who are profoundly affected by an inability to conceive or carry, but who are unwilling to walk the path of testing and treatment. Not unable, but unwilling.

Since I'm pretty wide-open about our fertility, I hear a lot of stories from the women I know. Some of them want information on where to go, what options are open or just how to deal with the frustration and emotion. I'm all about that.

.. and yet, I get a ton of The Others, too.

The ones who want a shoulder to cry on when they're not pregnant, or someone to understand their pain... despite the fact that they're unwilling to actually do anything to change their situation, or despite the fact that they've voluntarily placed themselves in a situation that is not going to change. Ever.

I can cry for months with the woman who's taking a break from treatment because of a deployment, a cyst or just plain exhaustion. I will gladly hold the hand of a friend or stranger who is frustrated that testing moves so slowly, or produces no answers. I can be there forever for a person whose infertility is unexplained and untreatable... but I have a hard time relating to the woman who is disappointed month after month, but has no plans to even try to move ahead and do something. Even if that something isn't a treatment I would have chosen.. even if that something is just a firm belief in a higher power who will assist when it's time... or an alternative approach that differs from my choices. Or a resolve to move on to a new phase in life, one that doesn't involve reproduction. At least that something I can understand.

Sitting back and doing nothing, with no plans to ever do anything.. that's the something I don't understand. I can't understand, no matter how much I try. It's not even a something, it's a nothing.

How do you deal with the friend whose approach is a nothing? How do you bite your tongue and be supportive when what you really want to do is start belting out suggestions? I haven't found that happy medium yet. For now, I'm taking a passive approach of my own, steering the conversation towards easier topics.

And making my chicken n' dumplings...

*he has four already, from previous relationships.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Iron is the debil!

They've put me on iron supplements to combat a touch of anemia.

I was actually excited about that. Iron is a normal pregnant supplement for a normal pregnancy... and besides, anything that can explain and counteract the crushing exhaustion I've been feeling, that's just a bonus.

So, I've been waiting for the whole constipation thing to kick in. I mean, that's a normal side effect and I've been waiting.

My constipation, it never showed up. I did, however notice increasing bathroom trips in the last few days, kinda like when I was on met*formin at first. When my intestines started waking me up with their wailing, I started to worry.

I mean, constipation, that's normal... but this? That's about as opposite from constipation as you can get. Literally. Maybe I'm some medical freak. Maybe I have some serious disease that makes iron react differently. Maybe the iron isn't being absorbed and I'm actually making myself worse.

So... I checked with my Dr Google and discovered that my particular supplement has a built-in stool softener. Just in case.

What. The. Hell?

We're going to talk about this at next week's appointment, but until then I'm actively seeking ways to make myself constipated.

Because it's all about being normal... and self-induced constipation, that's definitely normal in some parallel universe.