Cozy

For those who (understandably) equate baby-related blog content with a not- so-mild form of torture, you may want to skip this page…or save it for days when you are feeling the need to see some proof that miracles CAN happen.

Because Cozy is my miracle.

It’s taken me til now (10 weeks) to get over the utter shock of my BFP (and also some survivor guilt) enough to make a separate page about my pregnancy.  I will be dedicating it to my Cozy little baby nugget, and all of his or her important prenatal milestones.  Also, this is where I may share a few stories and photos, once I get around to it and stop feeling like photos might jinx something somehow and wind up causing horrible things to happen.  I’m almost there… I promise.  Here’s proof:

By way of introductions, this was our first glimpse of Cozy at 6.5 weeks. What a teenincy little cutie, I know!

Looking forward to tomorrow and Ultrasound #2 LIKE YOU WOULDN’T BELIEVE!  So nervous though.  Please, please, please let us see our little one wiggling around in there.  

(For most recent updates, scroll to bottom and read up).

8/1/12-    Well… there was LOTS of wiggling going on in my uterus yesterday afternoon!  It was so amazing!  We saw our little one just dancing around, waving those tiny little fully-formed hands and feet at us.  His/her heart rate, head circumference, and everything else were right on track!  She’s just perfect.  I say she, because my OB has us convinced it’s a girl now… because of the link between lots of nausea and food aversions and girl babies.  I know that we could just as easily still have a little man growing inside me (which would be fabulous too), but for some reason, we’ve taken to referring to “it” as “she.”

If I could post video on here, I’d share the beautiful video Riggo took so you could all hear what a nice, strong heart beat our baby has.  But I can’t, so you’ll just have to take my word for it.  It’s the most beautiful sound ever.  Period.

8/28/12- I am 14 weeks today.  Cozy is the size of a large orange and weighs approx 1.4 oz, with his/her own little fingerprints, hair follicles, and teeth buds (under the gums, of course).  He/she enjoys wiggling around and kicking (though I can’t feel it yet), practicing different facial expressions, sucking fingers, making and voiding urine, and will reportedly root (for a nipple) if we poke in on my tummy (probably won’t find one in there though). So pretty much all the same stuff he/she will be doing the first few months on the outside.

Riggo had me laughing to the point of tears the other day when he did his impression of Cozy’s movements, based on the show he/she has put on for us at our last two ultrasounds. Hilarious, and pretty accurate, really.  I did stop laughing and compose myself long enough to scold Riggo for teasing our unborn child’s first little exercise routines, which are more beautiful to us than any professionally choreographed performance in history.

Ready for some other great news?

The NT scan results were normal, with the measurement being 1.6mm (slightly better than average).  The lab results indicate a 1 in 324 chance that this baby has Down’s, and a 1 in 8,000ish chance of Trisomy 21.  I’m happy with those numbers.  We may do the blood panel for the second trimester screening too, just to give us some more peace of mind, but we’ve ruled out having the amnio or CVS testing done.  Not willing to take those risks just to find out if we have a special needs child, which we would love and cherish just as much anyway.

And finally, oh my god, finally… I am feeling better.  Not great, mind you, but much, much, much less pukey all day long.   I’m feeling a tiny bit more energetic, and have even gone back to working a part-time nanny gig to bring in a little much-needed cash.

As for my food aversion problem… things are slowly starting to look, sound, smell, and taste more appealing to me.  I still have certain foods that make me queasy at the thought of them, but I’m able to read my cookbooks and food magazines again, and have begun cooking a few nights per week. My husband has been living on whatever he could find to throw together at the last minute.  I’m glad to be able to feed him properly again, not that he’s not capable of doing it himself.  I am noticing a slight increase in my appetite, too.  I’m hungry more often, and though I still can only eat small servings, I want more of them.

In a nutshell, things are good.  My 36th birthday was quiet and happy. I’m getting more rounded in the belly area every day.  We are giddy like schoolgirls on a regular basis.  We already love our Cozy so much!

I’ll close with a few pics of Cozy from the most recent batch of u/s pics (at 13 weeks) and a couple of the first ever belly shots that did not immediately find themselves in the recycle bin.  I really just look super bloated, in my opinion. Belly shots were taken this morning. Sorry for the poor quality photos.

Our peanut waves hello

Cozy sucking on a hand

14 WEEKS

9/10/12-       16 Weeks

Oh my Good Lord am I ever happy to announce that nausea has left the building!  And food!?! I am hungry almost all the time now and can just about eat anything without gagging and/or turning a scary shade of green.  I presume this means that I will finally begin to gain some weight.  I freaked out a little at our routine OB appt on Friday because I have not gained any weight at all.  The PA that saw us assured me that this is not cause for concern as long as the baby is measuring on track (and he/she is), and that I should be putting on the pounds shortly.  I believe she may be right.  I’m soooo hungry!

Everything was great at our last appt.  It was the first visit that did not include an u/s, which made us sad (we miss seeing our baby!) but we did get to hear that beautiful heart beat and talk about our next appt in three weeks (second trimester screening, including gender scan! YAYYYYY!!)

So medically, all is well. I’m still feeling pretty tired, especially after I do anything active for a couple of hours, but it’s nothing compared to the past three months!  I tweaked my lower back doing my first prenatal yoga DVD a couple of weeks ago (I was immobile for 2 days), and have had some pretty regular back pain ever since.  Not sure if it’s still related to that, but I’m trying to do stretches regularly to get it to ease up a bit.

I’ve had a few freak-out sessions due to some intense round ligament pains. At least that’s what the books/internet say I’m feeling.  Ouch.  They hurt and they scare me.  But they come and go, and that is just what they are supposed to do, or so I’m told.  Just means Cozy’s growing a lot right now…which also jives with what the book says should be happening around 16 weeks (growth spurt!!!).

I’m pretty much wearing leggings, and maternity jeans/shorts all the times now, with big tops.  The belly is rounding out nicely and getting harder too.  My tummy-sleeping days are completely over. I’ll try to get some pics to put up soon.

But I’m actually sleeping like a champ and even had my first amazing Cozy dream!  I can’t believe how much more bonded I felt when I woke up!  It’s like I got a glimpse of him/her in my dream, and it made me so unbelievably happy.  I really am embracing this so much better now.  It’s such a great feeling.

What do I miss these days?  Hmmm.  Probably sneezing without peeing in my pants a little.   Sorry if that’s TMI, but it’s just a fact.  I expected that loveliness in the 3rd trimester, but oh no… it’s here now… also happens when I laugh really hard… and when it happens it just makes me laugh even harder, which makes… well, you get it.  Time to get serious about those Kegels, I guess!

Nursery plans are still in our heads at this point, but we’re taking steps… like cleaning out space in the garage for the stuff that’s in the room now, and other baby related things to come.  And we’re doing lots of research on products.  I’m not sure if a shower is going to happen for us, but if so, I guess we’ll need to be registering some time soon.

Riggo continues to be as excited as any first time daddy-to-be should be… and then some.  He’s such a good sport when it comes to my aches and pains (and moods), and it makes me so happy when he starts telling me (in detail) about the research he’s doing on things like air purifiers for the baby’s room (we have two large dogs).  And he insists on missing work to come with me to every OB appt, which I love.  I’m a lucky woman… in so many ways.

To be continued…

9/25/12               18 Week Belly Pics

Pardon the ratty t-shirt I’m sporting… It’s very comfortable, and I go for that a lot these days.  The side shot makes my belly look a little weird-shaped, if you ask me. It’s really more rounded than that, but that’s just how this picture came out.  Also, one of our dogs, Wendy, is peeking through my legs here… she is my constant shadow now.  :)

10/2/12-        19 Week Update and Gender Reveal!

( BTW: I’m borrowing the Update format from Emily at A Blanket to Keep.)

Due date:  February 26, 2013

How far along:  19 weeks (one week shy of the halfway point!)

Baby news:  Cozy is doing great.  We had our anatomy scan on Friday, and most importantly, I can report that all is well with our baby’s prenatal development.  And now… drumroll please…

Gender Reveal Cake (my stepmom made for us:)

Gender Reveal Cake (my stepmom made for us:)

IT’S A GIRL!!!!!!!!!!  Cozy gets to stay Cozy. At least for now:)  Riggo and I were both sort of hoping for a girl (though a boy would have been great too), so we were pretty excited when the u/s nurse shared the news.  Of course I cried for the next ten minutes after she told us, and off and on all day… just thinking about our little girl.  We are SO excited!

Body news:  I’ve finally gained some weight (about 5 pounds), and am showing enough to be in maternity clothes all the time now. I have even gotten a few of “those” smiles reserved for pregnant women in public.  One or two random congratulations, too.  It is so nice to finally be past the stage where I just look fat all the time, and not pregnant. Physically, I feel pretty good, most of the time.  I have noticed some reflux lately (I never, ever have that), as well as an increase in gassiness (oh joy).  I’m also hungry a LOT  more now.  I need to eat every couple of hours or I’m ravenous and very cranky.  It’s getting harder to bend over to tie shoelaces, etc.  I can’t see my feet when I look straight down, and, even though I’m pissed about the additional 20 pounds I started this pregnancy carrying, I can’t help but smile when I catch a glimpse of my belly in mirrors.  It’s real.  I’m actually pregnant, and you can tell by looking at me:)  See…

At the doctor’s office…right after we found out our baby’s gender:)

Movement:  This is the best news of all this week, besides the gender announcement. I’m starting to feel her movements!    Not a lot, and not every day, but it’s definitely her:)  Feeling a baby move or kick inside you is not something that a woman can ever forget. Even though it’s been 14 years since I felt E inside me, I knew the moment I felt it last week that I was feeling my baby.  It’s still very subtle, and Riggo won’t be able to feel it from the outside for a while yet, but it made my day last week when I felt her kick for the first time. And yes, I cried.  A lot.  I didn’t think it was possible for me to love this child more than I did before… but I fell even harder when I felt that first little nudge.

Sleep:  I’m lucky because I’ve always been mostly a side sleeper, so my sleep is still pretty comfortable with the correct combination and placement of pillows.  I do have to get up at least twice to pee, which is annoying, but I’ve gotten pretty good at zombie walking to the toilet and half-sleeping while I pee, then walking back to bed without waking up too much.  Sometimes I even go back into whatever vivid dream I was having when I had to get up.  Don’t get me started on the dreams.  Sheesh.

Cravings/Aversions:  Nothing too remarkable in terms of cravings.  I had some salt and vinegar potato chips the other day and I can see that happening again really soon.  They were like manna from heaven.  Aversions?  Nothing like the first two months!  I have to be in the mood for certain foods, especially meats. And I’ve noticed a pronounced issue with certain textures that never bothered me before. I’ve had to actually spit food out of my mouth and into a napkin a few times, because after a valiant effort to chew and swallow, the texture was just too… something… for me.  But in general, I’m back to loving food again.

Names:  Now that we know Cozy is, in fact, a girl, we are doing a lot more talking about this.  For a long time we had settled on the name Cozette (which is part of the reason we call her Cozy now). But I’m having some second thoughts on that now… I just don’t want her to be teased.  I am all for unique names… in fact, if a name is anywhere near the top of the popularity list, I’m not interested.  But I gotta draw the line somewhere.  So we’re back to the drawing board and have a few ideas, but nothing for sure yet.   One of my sisters pointed out that no matter what we name this child, she’ll probably always be called Cozy (by us) because we’ve been calling her that for so long already.  And if that’s the case, I’m fine with it.  As long as she can be introduced with a name and not an adjective, if she prefers that.

What I Miss:  Sushi, soft cheeses, fitting into my clothes, wine, and rolling onto my stomach in bed (if I want to).  Oh, and not being overcome with emotion (and usually tears, either the happy or sad kind) multiple times per day for no good reason.

What I’m looking forward to:  Besides holding my baby for the first time?  Well, I’m excited about feeling her kicks increase in frequency and intensity (not so much the elbow to the ribs, but I’ll be happy when Riggo can feel her too).  I’m also looking forward to getting the nursery finished, though I know it’s gonna be a while til we can get it done.

Mood:  I’m happy almost all the time.  When I feel her move inside me, I am filled with a sense of happiness and calm like I have not felt in… well, ever.  It’s amazing.  I love this so much.

It’s true that I am very emotional right now, which makes blogging and reading blogs difficult sometimes.  I get so sad and angry at times because I want so badly for everyone to be where I am now… to be experiencing this joy and not the heartache and sorrow that is so common in the IF journey.  I cry with brave women who are struggling, and I cry with the ones who get to announce happy news. And no matter what everyone’s spiritual beliefs are, I pray for everyone.  It’s all I can do.

Milestones:  We’ve almost made it to the halfway point!  Hooray!  And I’ve begun to feel my baby’s little body moving around inside me.  Those are two pretty incredible milestones!

Medical Concerns:  I’m choosing not to entertain any medical concerns right now.  There is just too much to worry about when you are pregnant, and I have decided I want to enjoy this as much as possible. It may be the only chance I get at growing a life inside me… a life created by myself and my husband.  I do not intend to spend the next 5 months worrying about every little possible medical concern.  As far as I’m concerned, AMA can kiss my ass.  I am healthy and so is our little girl.

Sex:  Yes, please.  If I’m not too tired.

How’s Daddy?  Oh, Riggo is doing just fine, thanks.  He still talks to Cozy through my belly button every day, and has started singing the Redskins Fight Song to her:)  I suggested a lullaby one night, and that’s what he chose.  I guess she may as well get used to it now.  I am trying to teach him a few standard lullabies, you know, to supplement the sports-related serenades.

Nursery:  Ha! Not even close to being finished.  Probably won’t be finished until the end of January, which I’m not thrilled about, but whatayagonnado?  Here’s what the room looks like today:

Riggo popped his head into this one:)

Yes, those are baby clothes all over the place.  Since we found out that it’s a girl, I have finally been able to go through the hundred boxes of baby clothes from my sisters (many of which were originally handed down from the girls’ especially stylish and adorable older cousin, Julianna).  I am having soooo much fun with all of it, though I have done so many loads of baby clothes laundry that I feel like it’s a premonition of what is to come… a not so pleasant aspect of parenting that I may as well go ahead and get used to:  Constant LAUNDRY.  The best part is that most of the clothes are baby girl clothes!

My sisters MH and B have three little girls between them, so our little one is basically set in the clothes department.  We will seriously not have to buy a single item of clothing until this child is like 5, and probably not even then due to all the hand-me-downs we hope to keep getting.  And this stuff is CUTE, y’all… and mostly in good condition. I’ve had to toss a few things that were obvious favorites with my nieces, but we are set when it comes to clothes. We also got a bunch of other “gear” like a bjorn carrier, infant tub, breast pump (I’m not squeamish about sharing with my sister. She’s my sister.  It’s fine), and precious Pottery Barn crib bedding/mobile.

So we’ve got a lot of work to do in the nursery.  We have the crib coming some time in the next week or two, and will paint and rip up the old carpet within the next month or two.  I’ve got an idea of my preferred color scheme, but nothing is set in stone yet. I’ll post pics as I have them.

That’s it for now, folks.  I’ve gotta go do more laundry.

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10/16/12-  Week 21

Just a quick update today.  I’ve had a pretty emotional few days and don’t have the energy to write much.

I just had to share that last night was the first time Riggo felt (and saw:) Cozy move.  It was very special and he was thrilled.  He had been getting a little impatient about not being able to feel anything when I’ve been feeling her all the time now (and loving every minute of it).  So I finally got him to keep his hand on my belly long enough to feel her little kicks.  It didn’t take long, because she is usually pretty active right after I settle down in bed at night.

Other than that special moment, there’s not much else to report.  Things are going great, and I am as happy as I can be… feeling mostly energetic and rarely sick.  I’m trying to enjoy this comfortable time before things get a bit more, well, huge.

More later, I promise.

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11/30/12- Week 27

Wow, how time flies!  I can’t believe I haven’t written anything- not so much as an update- in over a month! Yikes.  Definitely well overdue.  (Thanks to Kaybee for her nice comment, reminding me that it’s been too long).

So here it is, folks… without further ado:

Due Date:  February 26, 2013

How many weeks:  27 and a half-  Third trimester!  Yayyyy!

Baby news: Our baby girl is doing great!  Growing and moving around in there like nobody’s business.

Body news: Well, I’m feeling (and looking) more and more gigantic by the day, and generally loving it.  Though I’m much more uncomfortable, too.  What are some of the more choice bodily changes and challenges these days, you ask?  Oh, well, lets see… there’s the ongoing and steadily worsening gassiness; changes in my boobs that border on frightening; some sort of sharp/achy, deep pelvic pain upon standing which causes me to walk like a geriatric duck for the first 10-20 steps I take after any prolonged sitting; the return of “frequent urination,” aka, pretty much feeling like I need to pee constantly, but not being completely sure it’s not just the baby stepping on my bladder; inability to find a comfortable prone position, even with the aid of the Snuggie pillow and 15 others that now vie for space on our bed; a strangely deep and all-consuming hunger that pops up sometimes less than an hour after I’ve eaten what most would consider a full meal; and last but not least, the daily heartburn and acid reflux that has turned me into a certifiable Tums addict.

Movement:

Can’t get enough of it!  She is so active, especially in the mornings and evenings, after I eat, or anytime I try to lie down and get some rest.  It’s fabulous.  Apart from the occasional painful jab to the kidney or uppercut to the ribcage, I love to feel her moving around in there, and I try to talk to her a bit whenever I know she’s awake.  Riggo was enjoying trying to wake her up by getting up close to my belly and talking to her loudly… but I had to nix that, explaining that interrupting her sleep patterns now is just as cruel and ill-advised as if he were to do that later on when she’s here.  So he looks forward to her “kicky” times just as much as I do.   It’s truly a miracle to feel her movements, and it really helps to calm any irrational, but inevitable fears.

Sleep: It’s getting tougher to get good sleep.  If it’s not the almost hourly trip to the bathroom that wakes me, it’s the herculean, but necessary effort of rolling from my left side to my right side, or vice versa. Sometimes the pillows help, sometimes they make it more difficult.  I have a love/hate relationship with my Snuggie pillow.  When it’s “in place” and I’ve found a comfy position, it’s heaven. Until I have to get up to pee, which then requires that I disentangle myself from a large and rather awkwardly shaped pillow (which is more difficult than it sounds, as I am now rather large and awkwardly shaped myself, and getting out of bed takes more and more of an effort as it is.)  So I tend to take my naps with it, and once I feel the need to get up or change positions, the nap’s over.  Bedtime is trickier.

We also just got a humidifier (for the baby’s room, ultimately, but for now… it’s in our room) and I’m hoping that helps some with the incredible dryness and constant congestion I’m experiencing- especially at night. This is a pregnancy symptom that I do not remember having with my daughter 14 years ago… and it’s no fun.  I’m a snot-factory.  Riggo is regularly disgusted with my nasal activities. I told him it’s just good practice for the precious little mucus monster we’ve got coming to us.

Cravings: Nothing overwhelming or overly interesting to report here.  I crave food groups more often than one thing in particular.  Like I’ll feel the need to eat fruit sometimes, and must find some and eat it asap.  Any specific cravings have unfortunately not been of the healthy variety.  There were the cheeto’s I drove to the store to get, and the Ben and Jerry’s greek frozen yogurt?  I could subsist on only that, I think.  Mmmm.  Haven’t tried it?  You really must.

Names:  I’m happy to report that we have decided on a name!  But, sorry, I’m not sharing it here yet.  It’s a family name (both first and middle) and we love it- both of us teared up when we first discussed the nickname, which is what she’ll go by.  I really wanted that “Aha” moment to happen so we’d know we had the name, and it did.  We’re super excited.

But no, it’s not Cozy :( Though we all know Cozy WILL be one of her pet names, just because it’s been that way since before she was even conceived!  We still say, “Put that in Cozy’s room,” etc, even though we have her name picked out.

What I Miss: I miss blogging regularly, but I feel like everything I say is going to hurt someone who is struggling, and I don’t want to do that, so I just don’t say anything. Plus, my life is pretty pregnancy-centered right now, and otherwise not very interesting.  But I was just rereading some of my old posts and comments, and it made me realize how much I miss it.  Maybe I’ll try to come back to writing more often. Other pregnant bloggers find ways to post without it all revolving around all things pregnancy and baby-related.

Other than that, I still miss the same things:  Fitting into my clothes (and shoes! I’ve already gone up a half shoe size!), sleeping on my tummy, red wine, exercising (I’m either too scared or uncomfortable to do much besides stretching and walking), not living in fear of farting in awkward places and/or company, and sushi.

What I’m looking forward to: I’m looking forward to not missing all of the above things.  I’m also looking forward (like you wouldn’t believe) to getting the nursery finished started.  My nesting urges are almost out of control these days, but we are still having to wait to get things rolling.  Frustrating? Yep.

Mostly, I’m just looking forward to seeing our baby girl for the first time, holding her close, and showering her with all of this amazing love we already feel!

Mood:  It’s been pretty good lately.  The second trimester was just what it’s supposed to be (if you bypass the anxiety of the first few weeks of it… unwelcome remnants of first trimester fears- the inevitable after-IF kind.) I’ve been emotional, and sometimes moody, but generally very happy.  It’s like there are these underlying feelings of gratitude and calm that are always there under the surface… even if what’s showing on the outside doesn’t always reflect those feelings. I’m happy guys.  I can’t always stop the tears when they need to come (like when I read about another loss or another miracle on your blogs), but I just let them come, and then move on.

Riggo remains as patient and loving as ever when it comes to my less than cheery moods.  He’s developed quite a good little pregnancy mood-dar, and if the forecast is especially foreboding, he hugs me, ducks out, and seeks cover. I’m getting better at letting him do that. :)

Milestones: We’ve reached the 3rd trimester!  I can’t believe how fast the first two went, with the exception of the excruciatingly slow first weeks of sickness and uncertainty.   And I guess, technically, we reached viability at, what? 24 weeks?  The thought of the baby coming then, or even now, is still a very scary one, so I don’t go there.  I’m glad we’re this far along, but I want to reach full term.  That’s that.

Medical Concerns:  I had the glucose test for gestational diabetes and a blood panel drawn at my last appt (last week), and all is well!  No problems at all to report.  My platelets are still on the “low side of normal,” but since they didn’t go down any more since my last blood draw in first trimester, my OB is not worried about it. They will test again at 36 weeks and we can discuss options then if they have dropped significantly.

Either way, low platelets or not, I’m still considering making a natural birth plan (ie, no pain meds/epidural).  Have I lost my ever-loving mind?  Perhaps. I’ll just say that it’s complicated, but it’s something I’m seriously considering.  We have our childbirth prep class(es) coming up in a few weeks, so I’m hoping to learn more and make my mind up fully after that.  I’m reading a lot about the Bradley Method and Lamaze principles of childbirth. I may write a full post on this whole decision at some point… get more into my thoughts and feelings about it.

Sex: Interesting, but good. ‘Nuf said.

I’m  not loving certain aspects of my body now that I’m so big, but sometimes and in some ways I marvel at it.  It’s frightening at times, the changes, but also beautiful and miraculous when you think about what it’s all for. As a 36-year-old woman who started her pregnancy a good 15-20 pds overweight (thanks, IVF), I’m really gonna have my work cut out for me when this is over and I’m back at the gym for real.  But I’m super motivated to get there… really looking forward to it, actually.  And exercise of any kind has always been an aphrodisiac for me- second only to a bit of vino.

The dreams, by the way, remain as vivid and lurid as ever. My oh my.

Hows Daddy? Riggo is doing great!  Looking very forward to meeting his baby girl and being her Daddy.  He is so sweet and loving to both of us right now… sometimes it makes me cry.  We really are so lucky to have each other.  And this little one on the way? She’s in for a lot of laughs.  I can’t wait to see her in her Daddy’s arms.  I love them both so much.

Nursery:  I won’t go into the financial and logistical details that have delayed our nursery renovations until after the new year.  But I will say that they suck, and I struggle every day with the fact that we are no further along in that process.   Not that we haven’t done anything. The room has been gutted and painted. Well, the first paint-color was a no-go, and we’re giving # 2 a shot this weekend, but at least we’re doing something.  And we got the crib and glider, and, as I’ve mentioned before, tons of baby girl clothes for the rest of her life.  So it could be worse.

I guess I won’t be able to fully relax until we’ve gotten that room finished and I can sit in there and talk to her about how we’re so ready for her to come, and tell her about all of the fun things we’ll do together.

Oh yeah! On a happier note…we did have an awesome baby shower a few weeks ago!  It was at our house (which was easiest for most out of town friends/family to get to) and hosted by my BFF, my 3 sisters, and my Mom.  We had such a good time.  It really was surreal, to be honest. I don’t handle being the center of attention that well (I was a wreck at my wedding), but I think I just floated through that day in a state of shock and awe.  So many friends and family there to celebrate something that (at one point) we didn’t think we’d ever have a chance to experience together. We felt so lucky in so many ways. Still do.

Oh, and we totally scored a ton of baby stuff. ;0

I’ll post a few pics from the day once I get them from my moms.  For now, here’s a couple of shots of me at 26 weeks (Thanksgiving weekend). I would not normally be wearing a hat for a picture session, but my hair was in its curling thingamagig, so I had to don the cap for this quick, impromptu photo-op (weren’t the leaves on our Japanese Maple gorgeous?! before they all fell off in a matter of a week.)

pic of me 1pic of me2

I guess that’s it for now.  That should bring us up to date and fill everyone in on where I’ve been.  I may not be a good blog poster, but I remain a faithful reader (and sometimes commenter) and supporter of many of you.  You are all in my thoughts and prayers every day, no matter where you are on this journey.

Until next time.

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January 4, 2013 –               32 Weeks (Holy Shit!)

Due Date:  Still February 26, which feels like it’s an eternity away and the blink of an eye at the same time.

How many weeks:  32.  8 months. I can’t believe we’ve made it this far, and we’re so close now.  I’m still somewhat in shock about the whole thing.

Baby news: Our little girl is still doing great!  She’s growing so much, and is active a lot more throughout the day (and night).  She’s measuring right on track, or so I assume, since my uninformative group of physicians and NPs never tell me shit.  I do ask, and they say, “Oh, yes, everything’s fine.”  I want to scream at them… “Do you SEE my chart? Right there under the “Elderly” part, where it says “Secondary Infertility”?  Yeah, that means I’m a little insecure and want/need to know more than “everything’s fine.”   Oh well. As far as I know, anyway, our baby is right on track.  To us, she’s already perfect.

Body news:  My body has changed so much. I am officially huge.  So uncomfortably gigantic in the belly (and, frankly, everywhere else) that its gotten very hard to move around with any normal sort of speed or grace.  I lumber along.  Oh, and yeah, I waddle- it can’t be avoided at this point.  I sleep poorly every night and am back to feeling like a zombie if I don’t nap each and every afternoon between 4 and 6.  My boobs have taken on a new sort of achiness that I can only attribute to more (???!!!) growth and preparations for milk production.

And I do complain, folks.  And so will you.  If you don’t then you are either 1. a masochist 2. a saint or 3. a liar.  When I do find myself feeling complainy (which, I think, is more often nowadays than when I was sick every day in the first trimester), I try not to express it or let it show too much on my face.  But I usually fail and end up allowing Riggo to comfort me in all of my miserable, yet grateful glory.

The infertile in me (yes, she’s alive and well) is disgusted by this display of whiney weakness.  I’ve even had a dream recently where I was attacked and slapped around by a group of angry infertile women who targeted me as a Pregnant Enemy # 1 (a pregnant infertile with a penchant for complaining in the face of so much heartache amongst women who are yearning to get kicked in the ribs by an unborn babe).

Movement:

This baby is running out of room for all of her acrobatics.  She squirms and stretches and makes my tummy contort into unnatural shapes. She does step on my various organs and kick ribs pretty regularly.  This I think I take pretty well- I still   love feeling her too much to begrudge her a little uppercut now and then (it’s not like she’s trying to hurt her mommy, after all- the poor thing has no room!) But the dances she likes to do on the stage that is my bladder- yikes. That’s quite unpleasant.  Since my last several appts, she has flipped around from head up to head down and then back to head down again (according to whichever doc has the pleasure of palpitating my baby belly every other week).  I’m pretty sure she’s still head down at this point (yes!), because I feel lots and lots of pressure and sometimes pain in my pelvic region and points south.  Sometimes I think she’s dropped already cause she’s so dang low in there, but it’s too early for that to have happened.

Sleep:  I am trying not to take for granted all of this time I have to nap and sleep (“on my own terms” as my sister MH put it).  I don’t sleep well at all, but I do get lots of chances to make up for quality with quantity.  Even working part time, I’m lucky in this.  I know it.  And I think I’m dealing with the inevitable 3rd trimester tiredness pretty well. I rest as often as possible, allow myself one small coffee on work days, and just don’t push myself when I don’t feel up for things.  Riggo is very sweet and supportive, despite my fitful sleeping and constant nighttime trips to the  bathroom.  We talk a lot about how our lives are about to change, and we are very aware that neither of us has ever been as tired as we are about to be in a month or two.

Cravings: Still nothing noteworthy.  I’m hungrier more often, which is annoying, but I don’t have very strong cravings for one specific thing at this point.  I do have a wicked sweet tooth, which I tend to satisfy most nights with my frozen greek yogurt.  Bad, I know. But I’m on track with my weight gain, so as long as that remains the case, I’m happy.

Names:   Yes, Cozy has a name, but I’m still not ready to tell:)  I may just keep her as Cozy on my blog… but I haven’t decided.  It is a relief to have picked a name, though.  And we love it!

What I Miss: Walking normally.  Eating and exercising normally.  Sleeping normally.  Not tasting my food in my mouth hours after I’ve eaten it.  Stomach sleeping.  Wine.  Sushi.  My friends (I’m too broke, tired, or uncomfortable to do much these days).  Not being winded by walking up one flight of stairs.  The special full body hug Riggo and I have (I don’t mean that kind of special hug), but haven’t been able to do for real in months…not that we don’t love having Cozy between us when we hug, but I miss being able to snuggle right up next to him- between the boobs and the belly, it feels like we’re miles apart!

What I’m looking forward to:  

I’m just ready to meet our baby girl!  I can’t wait to hold her and kiss her little face.  That’s the main thing I think about these days.  Or I try anyway.  Nervous thoughts of the part that comes first do enter my mind a lot, but I’m trying to keep my eye on the prize (as my sister C put it today:).

Mood:   I’d describe myself as more emotional than moody lately.  I still cry at the most trivial things. Sometimes for no reason at all.  I got fed up at work the other day (long story) and had to walk out early or else I was going to have a breakdown.  (I didn’t get fired because, I think, my boss knows I’m a hormonal mess right now).  I’m uncomfortable most of the time, but happy. I’m about to have my little girl and I’ve been waiting for this for so many years.  It’s an amazing feeling.

Milestones:  I think we’ve hit most of them by now.  She won’t be considered “full term” until 34 weeks (two more weeks!) I think, but my Pregnancy App said that 97% of babies born at 32 weeks make it without serious complications.  I’m happy with that as a pretty significant milestone.  My baby is just mainly busy putting on weight right now… some precious little rolls that we can kiss all day long.  :)

Medical Concerns:   I won’t know about my platelet level until we check my blood again right before my due date (around 37 weeks, maybe?). But I’m honestly not that concerned about it. I’ll deal with it if they are low. If I don’t have the option of an epidural, so be it.

Two new complaints that I brought up at my last OB appt (one of which I had read about in the pregnancy books, one I had not):  The first one? Extremely painful nighttime leg (calf) cramps. OMG, these are bad.  I’ve had exactly three, and I will never forget the pain of each 1-2 minute nightmare.  My doc told me to take two tums before bed each night (which I have to do most nights anyway, unless I particularly want to experience reflux all night long) and have Riggo do a special, calf stretch/massage combo for 5 minutes per leg.  This sounds like it would be nice, but it’s really not. It usually hurts when he rubs my calves, even if he just gently massages, which is weird to me.  And the doc said to be effective at preventing the cramps, he really needs to get into it and do a deep massage.  Oh well. I haven’t had another one, but I’m terrified every night that I will wake with that tell-tale ache in one of my calves, that signals the start of some serious pain.  Has anyone else had these?  Am I crazy or do they suck really really bad?

Complaint number two was misdiagnosed as a rash by the 80-something year old OB that got to see me last week.  I told him several times I didn’t think it was a rash or anything on the surface of my skin, but he prescribed me a rash cream anyway and sent me on my way.  It did nothing, of course.  Here’s what it feels like:  There is a narrowish  strip of skin (an inch or two give or take) that runs horizontally underneath my bra line/boobs that feels like it is raw or has a sunburn all the time.  It’s a very unpleasant, sometimes painful sensation that feels like my skin is burning.  There are no topical skin symptoms that you would expect to see in a rash.  It looks like the top of my belly, but feels like it’s on fire or just like it is raw skin. Bras are out of the question for the most part (which is not pretty or comfortable when you’re sporting at least a D cup at this point) because they are too uncomfortable. Even shirts or anything touching it is uncomfortable.

When my doc was so obviously clueless, I went online and found plenty of validation on several sites with other women in the third trimester complaining of the exact same pain.  Ha!  I’m not crazy (yet… this shit threatens to drive me there every day). Other women report having similar clueless reactions from their docs when they describe very similar sensations in the same place (or sometimes it’s described as being on the back somewhere).  And, of course, there’s no diagnosis to be had. Much less any relief.  It’s another one of those lovely late pregnancy miseries we just get to live with until the baby comes, because that, of course, is when this supposed pinched nerve issue gets resolved.  Yippee.

If anyone else out there knows what I’m referring to, or has any useful remedies, I’d be ever so grateful to hear from you. One of my cousins whose fiance just had a baby apparently had a similar issue on her back and used a cooling spray (like for athletes’ muscles) on it.  I got something like it and it’s helped a little.  Thanks for passing that info on, Aunt C!

Hows Daddy? Riggo is great.  He’s happiest when he’s not sick (like he was for the month between Thanksgiving and Christmas- not fun. For either of us.) and when the Redskins are doing well.  Right now he’s feeling better and the skins are in the playoffs.  He’s a happy camper. And he’s so excited to meet our baby!  The other night we were lying in bed and he was all happy and smiling, and he said, “Lets talk about Cozy’s face… what it’s gonna look like.”  So we did. It was so cute.

Nursery: We’re so close!  I’ve written in past updates about how difficult the delays in getting the nursery finished have been for me.  It’s still hard to pass her room and see it so empty and just not ready… but I’m doing better because I know we’re almost there.  We’ve got the contractor lined up to start the built-in shelving unit in the next week or two, then comes the flooring and the furniture.  After that it’s all up to me to finish the final details (I’m making a homemade valance for the windows- I’ll post pics), which I’m looking forward to a lot.  I know it’ll be rough getting all that work done when I’m in my last month, but from what I understand (but don’t remember because I successfully squashed any/all nesting instincts in my first pregnancy, for obvious reasons) the nesting urge gets much stronger in the last few weeks before the baby’s birth.  I’m excited to get down to business in Cozy’s room!  We’re spending more money than we probably should on all the work, etc, but we’re not going crazy or anything. I mean some of what we’re buying is off of CraigsList, after all.  But the new floors and shelving/window seat/storage bench… it’s not cheap.  I can’t wait though. I promise to post some pics when it’s all done:)

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That’s all I have in me for now. I know I need to get on top of a few of those regular posts I promised last month. I blame fatigue and brain fogginess.  I’ll do my best to get something written soon.  In the meantime, I’m still here and still staying as current as I can with many of your blogs.

I’ll leave you with an actual regular sized pic of me doing some bouncing on my labor ball. I’m sitting in Riggo’s man cave during the Redskins/Cowboys game last week (go Skins!)

photo-22

Have a great weekend everyone!

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February 22, 2013      39 1/2 weeks!

Due Date:  Tuesday…ish.  I’m really hoping she comes this weekend or maybe Monday.  There is a full moon on Monday, so we’ll see.  :)

How many weeks:  Almost 40.  And I’m feeling every bit of 40 weeks pregnant.  So uncomfortable, but sooo excited and ready to meet our Cozy!

Baby news:  At my last appt on Monday, the OB that saw me estimated that she’s around 7 1/2 to 8 pounds now… of course, this is just a guess based on how I’m measuring and his feeling my tummy. But he claims to have a pretty good track record for estimating baby’s birth weight.  We’ll see.  My daughter, E, was right at 8 pounds, but she was 2 weeks late!  Please, please God do not let this one be that late. If she’s 8 pounds right now, then I’m hoping it means she’s ready to make her appearance soon!  Oh, and there was no real change in my cervix when he checked it on Monday, other than maybe a “fingertip”.  When I looked discouraged, he assured me that I needn’t be.  I know all women are different, and that just because I’m not already 2 centimeters dilated and effaced, does not mean that the baby won’t come for several more weeks.  She could come anytime and I could go from zero to active labor in a matter of hours.  What’s important is that our baby girl is doing well.  She’s still head down (yay!) and her heartbeat and measurements are right on track.   She moves around a lot (despite her space limitations) and gets the hiccups like 3-4 times per day.  I’m also pretty sure she has “dropped” as low as she’s gonna get. “Locked and loaded” as my niece, Gracie, said.  :)

Body news: Well, I’m gigantor.  The belly is large, low, and tight. I get BH off and on throughout the day and night, and they are getting more and more uncomfortable. The boobs are bigger, veinier, and generally scarier-looking than ever before- I’m gonna feel a little guilty about shoving them in my innocent baby’s face so soon after her birth!  Oh well, as long as they fill up with plenty of milk for her, then I guess she’ll get over it.  Other than that, I think things are pretty normal. The hemorrhoids issue is under control (I’m surprisingly not having the constipation issues I expected). I’ve gained about 25 pounds, which is more than I probably should have considering I started out with extra weight.  But my doc seems unconcerned.  And at this point, I’m just glad my baby is a healthy weight.

Movement:

I think it’s decreased a bit in the past month, as she is running out of room.  But I did what the doc recommended and had a sweet snack, then lay down for an hour and counted kicks.  She clocked in at exactly 10 that hour, which is normal.  And while she definitely has her more active times of day (after meals, evenings, whenever I lie down to sleep, etc), I’m not concerned when she sleeps or is quiet for hours at a time- I try to enjoy the relative calm and the fact that I don’t have to press my hand between my rib cage and her little feet and rump in order to fend off any sudden, potentially painful jabs.  :)

Sleep:  It’s not good.  The hourly, yes I mean hourly, peeing seems to almost be amping up a bit.  Now that she has dropped, I’m up constantly!  It doesn’t even matter if I abstain from any pre-bedtime water or milk (which is all I can drink these days, thanks to the constant reflux issue that is worsened by any sort of juice drink).  And, of course, there’s the fact that my belly is enormous and hard, which makes turning from side to side challenging at best, and painful at worst.  I literally roll out of bed after assuming a right side position as close to the edge as I can. It’s a whole procedure and it involves lots of grunting and usually swearing.  Riggo is a saint.  When he wakes to this scene, he doesn’t just roll over the other way, he rolls towards me to try to help me out as much as he can.  A saint, I tell you.  Thank God for him.  And for naps.

Cravings: Not really.  Just feed me… regularly.

Name:   Yes, Cozy has a name, but it will remain Cozy on my blog for now. We picked a family name, and her initials are CMK . It’s a classic name, but we’re using an original nickname for it (that we came up with on our own) to avoid any further confusion in our family.  We have several C’s in the family (my aunt, sister, and cousin) all named after my wonderful grandmother, who I wish with all my heart was well enough to be at the hospital for the birth of this great grandbaby… like she was for E’s birth.  She can’t be there this time, but our daughter will be named for my Mammy.  Her middle name will be my Mother’s name.  We’re happy with it… even if she does get called Cozy anyway, which we expect she will;)

What I Miss:  I’m not even thinking about what I miss anymore.  I’m just all about getting ready to meet my baby! That’s all I care to think about these days.  :)

What I’m looking forward to:  

I think I just answered that.

Mood:  Impatient, but happy.  Now that we’ve got everything ready to go (see below), I’m much more calm and relaxed about everything.  And it doesn’t hurt that I stopped working at the end of Jan.  That did wonders for my mood.  That, and getting the nursery finished!

Milestones:   I’m officially full term.  It’s hard to believe we made it here.  But our Cozy will be here any day.  It’s such a dream come true.

Medical Concerns:   My platelet count was normal as of my last blood draw at 37 weeks!  Hooray!  I’m sure that if I do decide to get the epidural, they will have to check the level again to make sure there’s no risk of me bleeding out and all that. But I feel better about that now.  That’s the good news.

The less good news is that I tested positive for Group B Strep at 38 weeks (another routine test they do these days).  Apparently, it’s not uncommon (about 25% of healthy women can have this bacteria down there at any given time), and it’s treatable with antibiotics.  Even though I may not have enough of it present to be of concern when she comes, since there is a risk to the baby if she were to come into contact with too much of the bacteria in the birth canal, I will just get antibiotics via an IV (that can then be capped off so I can maintain my mobility as long as I want) when I get to the hospital.  They will also test her blood once she’s here to make sure she didn’t contract it, which could cause things to happen that I’d rather not think about.  I was bummed when I found out I tested positive, but I’m just trying to see it as a good thing that they know about it and can prevent it from being a problem for my baby.

Back to the good news!  Since my last update (last month?!), I’ve had NO more nocturnal leg cramps (thanks to calcium, magnesium, and leg massages) and even better… that painful skin issue on my upper abdomen finally cleared up.  It definitely got worse before it got better, but in the past week or two (maybe since she’s dropped?), I’ve noticed a significant decrease in my pain level.  And now, I barely even feel it anymore!  (Huge sigh of relief). But seriously, someone in the medical OB community needs to give that condition some sort of appropriately horrible name.  They’re good at that, after all (see “Elderly Multigravida” post).

How’s Daddy? Riggo is still doing great.  He handled the Redskins’ defeat in the playoffs with lots of maturity and optimism (ok, and a little anger at the coaching staff for not pulling RGIII out of the game before he injured himself further, potentially affecting next season).  Now he’s just busy with work and handling the hired  idiots guys that have been doing our nursery renovations and other home improvement projects in the past few weeks (one of the guys used the inside of Cozy’s made-up crib as a place to put his tools when we wasn’t using them… twice.  I was miffed, to say the least.)  Riggo is just as excited about Cozy’s arrival as I am. And he’s taking two weeks off work so he can spend all of his time with us!

Nursery: Finally! It’s finished!  I just have a few throw pillows to make for the window seat, a lampshade to re-cover with fabric, and, when she gets here to stay until Cozy’s arrival, my Mom is going to paint a tree and a few small animals on the wall across from the crib.  My mom is very creative and quite the artist, so we’re excited to have her recreate the look that you’ll see in the picture below (we already have the little “branch” shelves, thanks to the woodworking talents of my father.) I love that this nursery has been a team effort!  And I am so proud of how well it’s turned out!  I absolutely love it.  Here are the before pics:

Riggo popped his head into this one:)

nursery 1

Aaaand, the after pics:   (Notice the nasty dog-chewed carpet has been replaced by beautiful, hand-scraped hardwood laminate flooring.  The giant giraffe’s name is Jo-Jo (or Josephine, depending who you ask)… giraffe’s have been my favorite animal since I was a child, so I had to have her.  Also, marvel at my craftiness… I made the Animal Alphabet art project above the crib, the window treatment (I’m in love with this fabric), the window seat cushion, and the two little owls on the shelves, who will eventually be perched on the little tree branch shelves on the wall above the glider and changing table.  It was so much fun to do!  I’m so happy with it, I can hardly stand it.  I just wander into her room all the time now, and daydream.

pic 1 pic 2 pic 3 pic 4 pic 5 pic 6 pic 7

This tree will be painted (by my Mom) on the wall above the glider. My dad made the shelves:)  I made the owls and the little birdhouse for them.

This tree will be painted (by my Mom) on the wall above the glider. My dad made the shelves:) I made the owls and a little birdhouse for them.

Like I said, there are a few more details that I still have to finish, but we’re pretty much ready.  What do you think?

Well, I guess that’s all for now:)  If I’m honest, I probably won’t have time (or energy) to post again for a while… I’ll be back, but it will certainly be after the birth of our daughter.  So wish me luck and thanks so much for all of your support!

You are all in my thoughts and prayers… always.

us

25 thoughts on “Cozy

  1. Agh, I missed this update earlier! YAY!!!! Congrats on your little girl!! I hope very much that you will post pics after she is born because I can’t wait to “meet” her, either! I’m so excited for you. Your bump is adorable.

  2. i second, third and fourth the magnesium!!! Pregnancy or not, i get horrible leg cramps that i can feel the on coming during the day, but strike at night. they are painful, to say the least. i don’t take the full recommendation (i only take 1 tablet normally, 2 during pregnancy our of the 3 or 4 I could take and it worked for me). I’ve heard for some that eating a banana a day helps with night cramps also.

    I don’t have anything to offer for the other issue. sorry.

    congrats on 32 weeks! your picture is great!

  3. I can’t believe you’re 32 weeks along! You look great and I understand completely about the complaining – I am very careful not to complain in the presence of someone I know / suspect to be struggling with infertility, but I am perfectly content to get it all out there with my husband and fertile friends! It’s already been a huge adjustment for me at 16 weeks and I have a feeling the harder parts are yet to come!

    • I know… Time does fly! It gets a bit more challenging in the third trimester, for sure, but I know you know that it’s all totally worth it!
      Thanks for commiserating:)

  4. I LOVE THE TREE/SHELVES!!! That’s such a cute idea!! :D

    Also, your doctor is so right about dilation. I was so disappointed when I was just past my due date and was still long, thick and not dilated. Three days later my water broke!

  5. Can’t wait to hear the good news! The nursery is adorable. Where did you get the red chair and ottoman from? I am still hunting for a good, affordable chair option.

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