Friday, June 29, 2007

Sprout, stop being so stubborn!

Hey there everyone, sorry I have been gone (for what seems like an eternity), but Sprout is just as stubborn, pig-headed, and contrary as I am. She's certainly "a little me" and I know she's just messing with me.

We tried to do the amnio yesterday, for several hours, and one of two things kept occurring: either SHE was in the way of the needle (and wouldn't move, despite my gymnastics under the doctor's supervision), OR the placenta was in the way. Honestly, "she fills me up" and there is not much room in there to get "a clean poke."

Boy, oh, boy, once my doc brings her out, he gets to spank her first, then it's my turn, lol. I love her to pieces, but come on, already!

If this "event" could have been on video yesterday, what a show you all would have seen. Honestly, he had her on the ultrasound, and she stuck her tongue out at us (I need to get that pic scanned so you can all see), and then, when he thought he had a clean area to inject the needle... she was laying there, all cute and innocent (at least innocent LOOKING, lol), but when the needle went in, she raised her little fist like she was gonna thump him (but he was well clear).

She's just being obstinate... like me. No reason for it, but it is, apparently, just her policy.

Grrrr.

Each night is becoming more difficult than the next, and I never thought it would be possible to be this tired (and then become even more tired). Yesterday wiped me out, and I came home and pouched myself (to borrow from glider terminology).

I just had another bad dizzy spell, so I am not going to be doing in driving. I am waiting on a callback on the dizziness issue, and also on the amnio issue. It never occurred to me yesterday until I talked to my friend, Sugeebaby/Karen, but my first daughter was born at 38 weeks, and she never had an amnio (but I went into labor on my own back then, too). Of course, that was nearly 14 years ago, I was younger, more fit, and things were very different.

So, right now, the schedule is Tuesday morning 8:00 for an amnio... UNLESS, doc says, "Oh, it will be ok, and we can go straight to C-section." I'm not sure if it was just the timing or what, but it was VERY BUSY in that hospital yesterday, but I'm hoping the amnio is not needed; still, this could be a "better safe than sorry" since I have had some other medical issues during this pregnancy.

When it finally happens, you will probably HEAR ME: "OH FINALLY... THANK GOD!!!! and no posting by ANYONE will be necessary, lol, that's how happy and LOUD I can be, lol.

Sprout was 10 pounds yesterday, and we're still waiting... and counting.

UPDATE: Friday, June 28th, 2007, 9:00 a.m.
I just got a callback from my doctor's office, and we are proceeding with the amnio on Tuesday at 8:00 a.m. -- better to be safe than sorry. After all, a LOT has been going on with this pregnancy (it's been a really hard one). So, if all goes well, Sprout should be here sometime on Thursday, July 5th. Please, let it be so!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Yesterday: What a crappy day.

That old expression: when it rains, it pours was never so appropriate as yesterday. My mood seems to be influenced by the weather, and when I woke up, I hurt all over (stupid joint pain), the barometer had fallen, and it was just a gray, wet, nasty day. I had had trouble sleeping, and I had very little rest. Sprout (the new baby, who we are naming Evey Lyn) is getting bigger and more demanding all the time, and I can't wait until she is born.

I tried to get up and focus on getting things done, but it just hurt too much to move. I took a painkiller my OB had given me, and that knocked me right out. When John finally got home, he had his own horror story to tell: he nearly got broad-sided on North Bridge St in front of Applebee's, and he slammed on his brakes to stop (the other driver totally blew a red light) and with all that action on a full ton truck, he blew his brakes or brake lines... he has that to work on today and tomorrow.

I'm behind in everything, and this is so unlike me: really, it is. I look at my glider cages, and I want to decorate them with all new cage sets so that they match up with Sprout's new ensemble, but I have no energy to do that. Hopefully, today will be a better day.

The plans for today include:

1. Removing all unnecessary items from the living room and setting up Sprout's new crib;

2. Paying the bills;

3. Placing all of Sprout's new things in the dresser her big sister gave to her;

4. Having that second cup of coffee to get me motivated to do all of the above.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Sprout's update: June 19, 2007

Whew, what another day this has been. We met with the doctor today, and my weight has remained unchanged since last week (yeah!), but Sprout's weight is estimated to be approximately nine pounds. Any which way you look at it, that is one big girl. She could still gain one-half to a pound per week... and we still have four more weeks to go.

Once the ultrasound was completed, I went through the physical exam, and still, there is no dilation, even though the contractions are pretty consistent. Now, I thought I was a little further along (37 weeks as opposed to only 36 weeks plus one day), but there it is. My doctor explained to me that it is NOT uncommon to not have dilated at this point, but he also said my cervix is "unfavorable." He said that even if I had some emergency (which I do not, both of us are fine, thank God!), that my labor could not be induced... he said we'd need to discuss a plan. Oh, goodie, you all know that I love plans, lol, but mine are always subject to change (always have been - always will be). Pisces rule! Chaos and disorder, that's me!

We discussed my options, and it is very true, I am physically exhausted most of the time, and he can clearly see that I am in misery (I love my Sprout, don't get me wrong, but the physical aspect is something incredible... even the most basic things wear me down). My mother was with me today, John's daughter, Crystal, and my daughter, Andrea, and my niece, Brandy. He asked me if I would like to sit down with mom and talk things over, and I told him I wish John were present because whatever decision I make IS going to have an impact on what he can do, too. Fortunately for me, he works right across the street from the hospital, and when I called him, he was there within 10 minutes.

We went back and talked things over with the doctor, who gave us a full explanation of what was going on, and he answered all of our questions. Short story? I can wait to see if I can have Sprout vaginally, but while we may go through a waiting period, she is going to continue to gain weight. John teased me, and he said my cervix must be rusted shut (ok, big guy, funny, haha), but even if we waited, a C-section might still be necessary since my first child, Andrea, was less than seven pounds... Sprout is clearly a great deal larger. John's daughter, Crystal, was also a nine pound baby (or a little more). My doctor said we could intervene -- IF... IF... her lungs are properly developed (and at her age right now, they may NOT be), we could schedule a C-section, but in order to do that, we would need an amnio to determine how far along her lungs have developed. That test, itself, poses some risks, but all in all, it is my decision to make, and he gave us all the information we needed to make an informed decision.

I don't want to do anything at all that will harm my "little" angel, but at the same time, to wait much longer also increases her size and, therefore, my chances for a C-section anyway. I hurt, a lot, and if I were not a teacher with summers off, I would be miserable (if I could work at all). Standing on my feet, sitting, or walking any length of time renders me absolutely useless. All in all, I did not make a decision today, but, instead, I postponed the decision until I could have a good think on it. I will go back in on Thursday this week, but after today, once again, I came home exhausted, and the C-section is looking like a great idea, as long as Sprout will be ok. The contractions and back pain are really uncomfortable, and just walking wears me down to nothing (and I used to be an "electric super-charged high-energy old girl"). I miss my old me.

Our current thinking, at this time, is to go in on Thursday and have the amnio performed. It takes a few hours to get the results, but if it is determined that little Sprout's lungs are "good" -- then we are in favor of a C-section, which I can have scheduled this Friday. I like Friday because that was my grandmother's birthday, and I loved her so much... I feel kind of guilty about a C-section (I feel like I am evicting a poor little innocent angel), but this could all happen anyway. Of course, since I am not working, I could "sit it out" for two more weeks and see if things change (they could, and I am an optimist at heart), and then, if a C-section is necessary, that's fine, too, but at least she has had a full chance to "go it on her own."

For now, though, I have prepared myself, just in case, and John and I went out today and got the crib and the mattress (we'd been dragging our feet on that purchase because I am so fussy), but most other things have already been taken care of... so, we'll see what happens on Thursday... if I show any signs of dilation at that point, I may re-think things and wait it out for up to two more weeks.

Meanwhile, the ultrasounds (not yet scanned) show a very cute little cherub completely "smushed" in there... poor baby, she needs so much more room. A funny little anecdote is that according to the measurements, not only is Sprout a big girl, but they also measured her little tummy (poor choice of words, actually), and my sonographer showed me her ranges... low, medium, and high, in terms of percentiles.... Sprout's little tummy is WELL ABOVE the 90th percentile. In short, my little girl has got a great big belly... she's "off the chart"!

Bad ol' mommy me... I should not have had those country-style BBQ ribs and baked potato over the weekend when we grilled out. Now, the diapers that we have bought for her may not even fit! Good thing we never got a bassinette -- those things are good for a child up to 15 pounds, and Sprout would not have gotten much use out of it at all.

Oh dear.

Momma's little girl!

Whew... ok, so yesterday's exam proved that the contractions are there, but I am still "officially not ready." This is just so frustrating because I am so eager to meet this precious little person, and she is playing "hide and seek" with me. Yes, I know right where she is, but when she is placed on a fetal monitor, she moves! Lots! It's hard to keep her still. Yesterday, her little heartbeat raced from the 130s to the upper 150s (once, she was in the lower 160s!), and they said that happens when she is moving around (she is LOUD, too, let me tell you). Her little heart is a strong one!

Today, we go in for our regularly scheduled OB check-up, and treat upon treats, we get a new ultrasound, too! Now, I don't mean to rush the little sweetie, and she surely is that (hey, she let me sleep last night, that counts for A LOT!), but my doctor said he didn't want her getting too big (about a month ago, she was estimated to be over 6.5 pounds, and THEN, he said she would continue to grow, on average, between a half pound to a pound PER WEEK. This little angel could potentially be a 10-pounder by now!

So, wish us luck. We are so excited to meet our little one!

Monday, June 18, 2007

The Tease!!

Well, I have been fooled once again! I sure am having contractions, and they are coming every 5 - 10 minutes apart, and they are lasting at least a minute. One even lasted about 10 minutes, as long as it took us to get to town. They hooked me up to the fetal monitor, and she is having a MAJOR party in there, and her little heart rate was zooming along at 157 bpm, BUT . . . she's still teasing since there is still no dilation. She is a TOTAL TEASE (can't imagine who she got that from). So, they sent me home and told me to rest up and meet with my regular doctor in the morning. Oh, yeah, like that is going to motivate this little devil (hey, I mean that in a GOOD way)!

At this rate, Sprout is just comfy in there, and I bet she doesn't out her ornery little self 'til LABOR DAY (ar ar, I made a funny).

It's over 90 degrees today, and the air quality is very poor. I've had it, and I am gonna go take a nap. Ugh.

"Hey there little person, what DO ya got planned for today?"

Ok, I am so ready to have this child, and she has been toying with me, the little booger. She woke me up at 1:54 this morning, and I had a really sharp contraction, I thought, "uh oh, I had better time this, just in case". That one lasted for the one minute mark... we had two more between 1:54 to 2:30, and that was it. Sprout went "Strike 3 -- yerrrrrrr out!

I just laid there, waited, wondered, and nothing... finally, about 4:00 this morning, I drifted off back to sleep, only to have the alarm go off at 5:00 for John. Now, the last thing I wanted to do was to go into active labor here at my house and have no way to the hospital, so I thought, "I'd better call mom and work out some details, just in case."

From the time I called mom, I had a total of four contractions (but since I was on the phone, I forgot to time the first one), but the following three were each at least one minute in duration. John had to leave for work, or he'd be late. I didn't want him to call in if this were not "the real deal" - so, he went on to work.

I thought, "Hmmm. Andrea was a very fast baby back in the day, and they always say the second one comes faster (especially at my advanced geriatric age)", so I called my doctor's office. I explained everything to him, and he said I could do one of two things:

1. Come on in for an evaluation, and if I weren't dilated, they could just send me home;

2. Wait for another hour, just to make sure, and keep a close eye on the timings.

I called John and let him know what was going on (and the great thing about this is that he works right across from the hospital), and we thought it best to wait and observe.

I took a nice shower, and I had read in one of my mommy magazines that is a good thing to do since it will relax the body, and then timing contractions can be re-started (hehe, that's almost like a re-boot, huh?).

While I was in the shower, I had this really bad ache in the lower part of my back that just spread everywhere (now the old L4 and L5 have issues anyway, but this was a totally different kind of pain). I decided I'd give myself until about 7:30 this morning to see what is going on, and since 7:00, I've had two more contractions. It's now 7:13, and I think I'm just gonna get dressed and drive on in to see what is going on with little Miss Sprout.

Tomorrow, I was scheduled for my last ultrasound -- will Sprout come before then?

Glider friends: If anything happens, Sugeebaby or Wanda will post up for me... until then... wish us luck!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Just a quickie...

This has been a busy weekend! The "camper thing" arrived early on Saturday morning, and it's blocked up and just in need of a good ol' fashioned leveling, which I think John is going to do today. Then, we can start moving things into it. Very soon, I'll have that sewing room, den, guest bedroom! YEAH! It's ugly as all get-out on the outside, but we have some T-11 in mind for that, and it's gonna be an "easy do" for the old man, who just thrives on all that DIY stuff. Me too, but I just can't do much while I am still carrying "the Titan princess"!

Speaking of this little beauty, we went shopping yesterday, and we got her a nice travel system -- hey, this girl NEEDS some serious leg room -- all she has to do is "out" her darling little self, and then she can kick and thump around all she wants. Right now, though, I feel like I am carrying a rebellious cantankerous kangaroo! It's been a rough few days: ever since Wednesday last week! I woke up on Wednesday, and I was SO FULL OF ENERGY, I was absolutely certain it was time to have a baby. I packed her little diaper bag, and I called my doctor's office, and I begged, whined, pleaded, etc to see if I could convince them to induce me -- all to no avail. While I was waiting on their call, I went to town and shopped until I literally dropped (for two days). I did way, way, way, too much... then, I went and did the same thing again, yesterday. They say if contractions have started, to help bring the baby on, walk, walk, walk.... well, Sprout is comfy in there, and she is not about to be bothered.

Last night, I barely ----- OWWWWWWWWWWWWWW.

Ok, just now, this very moment, I had a massively painful contraction... 11:52 a.m. June 17th. Sprout is TOYING with me...

But, as I started to say before she thumped me good... is that I barely slept last night. I got more rest from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. than I did the whole night long. I just can't get comfy in any position -- at all.

We go see the doc again Tuesday at 10:15, and we will have another ultrasound to see just how big she is. My only consolation is that doc says he doesn't want her getting too big because he doesn't want to have to do a C-section unless it is absolutely medically necessary.

Gosh, me too. I know that healing time and everything else is so much faster with a vaginal birth.

Wish us luck! Today, we're playing Solid Gold Oldies for her, and she is having fun in there... anything to encourage her to "come out and play"...

Yes, momma is NOT above playing her old Twisted Sister stuff, either....

Just a quickie...

This has been a busy weekend! The "camper thing" arrived early on Saturday morning, and it's blocked up and just in need of a good ol' fashioned leveling, which I think John is going to do today. Then, we can start moving things into it. Very soon, I'll have that sewing room, den, guest bedroom! YEAH! It's ugly as all get-out on the outside, but we have some T-11 in mind for that, and it's gonna be an easy do for the old man, who just thrives on all that DIY stuff. Me too, but I just can't do much while I am still carrying "the Titan princess"!

Speaking of this little beauty, we went shopping yesterday, and we got her a nice travel system -- hey, this girl NEEDS some leg room -- all she has to do is out her darling little self, and she can kick and thump around all she wants. Right now, though, I feel like I am carrying a rebellious cantankerous kangaroo! It's been a rough few days: ever since Wednesday last week! I woke up on Wednesday, and I was SO FULL OF ENERGY, I was absolutely certain it was time to have a baby. I packed her little diaper bag, and I called my doctor's office, and I begged, whined, pleaded, etc to see if I could convince them to induce me -- all to no avail. Last night, I barely ----- OWWWWWWWWWWWWWW.

Ok, just now, this very moment, I had a massively painful contraction... 11:52 a.m. June 17th. Sprout is TOYING with me...

But, as I started to say before she thumped me good... is that I barely slept last night. I got more rest from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. than I did the whole night long. I just can't get comfy in any position -- at all.

We go see the doc again Tuesday at 10:15, and we will have another ultrasound to see just how big she is. My only consolation is that doc says he doesn't want her getting too big because he doesn't want to have to do a C-section unless it is absolutely medically necessary.

Gosh, me too. I know that healing time and everything else is so much faster with a vaginal birth.

Wish us luck!

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Work, work, work!





Well, well, some strange surprises are in store for this little household! While I was getting ready to go to my OB appointment on Thursday, my phone rang (it never does until I am getting ready to go somewhere, by the way), and it was mom. Mom asked me the strangest question, "How'd you like to have a construction trailer?"

"A WHAT," I asked? So she tried to explain it to me. Now, keep in mind, I am super pregnant, and fuzzy-thinking is my specialty right now, which is right up there with painful decreased mobility, and an inability to breathe (as I normally would). My mind was racing to create a visualization of just what in the heck a construction trailer was, and the best thing I could come up with (as I was about to start up the van) was a black meshed cargo carrier doo-hickie thingie. Something to carry our equipment on. She said, "Oh no no no, this is a big!"

So, in a hurry to get out the door, I told her I'd just meet her where ever she was, as long as it was on my way to the doctor's office (it was), and I got the surprise of (and the deal of!) a lifetime (ok, well, almost). Sprout, herself, was the biggest surprise of a lifetime, haha.

What I found was a 10' x 30' "camper-like" thing... and a "thing" it is. This is actually a portable office used on construction sites, and though the thing is hideous to look at from outside, inside it is quite nice! Since I had about five minutes to make a decision, I asked myself this ONE question: "If I HAD to... could I spend the night in this thing?" and the answer was a resounding yes! So, mom bought it on the spot.

For those who know me and who have been to my home - it's SMALL... very, very, small, and with the birth of my new baby girl, I need a little more room for some things. Building on to this house is impossible for a number of reasons, but, I've wanted (and needed):

1. A "guest bedroom" for those times my parties get a little crazy, or when I have out-of-town company;

2. A "study" so I can have a place to do my paperwork, or just a place for some privacy -- in short, a "hideout";

3. A sewing room dedicated to all of the messes that I make!

This is "the answer" to all of those needs! YEAH MOM! That woman can find a deal -- ANYWHERE!

We had intended to have the trailer delivered this weekend, but along with this kinda purchase comes some sitework. I called the best gravel man I knew, and I asked him how quickly he could set me up with as much gravel as he could (the more, the cheaper, the better, I told him). Paul was GREAT! He came right over, in about two hours, with two dump trucks (one was a bit bigger than the other) chock full of creek gravel, and they spread 'em right out for me. Now, all my old man had to do (after he got home from work -- oh, and wasn't HE SURPRISED?) was spread it out and level it... thus the slideshow above.

Since the gravel is still plenty wet, it's gonna need a week to dry out so that we can properly set up the trailer, but at least we've got a start!

Now, I can't stand ugly, so we were out pricing siding on Thursday (at Lowes), and we've found just the stuff we need. Estimated cost, about $400. Mom said she'd help (she'll almost have to, I'm dirt poor at the moment. Then, later on, we'll set up an electric pole and create separate service for the "camper thing."

All good things come in time.

More pix to come when we're set up and ready to break this thing in!

Features:
1. Interior drywall
2. Wired for 220 amp service
3. Comes with two window air-conditioners
4. Pre-wired for phone and internet
5. Electric baseboard heat
6. Draftsman's table (and storage area)
7. Built-in shelving
8. Queen-size sofa
9. Refrigerator

I have plenty of room for my extra queen-size bed, a small TV, and a nightstand on one end; in the center area, I will set up my sewing machine and use the draftsman's table as my cutting area, and on the opposite end, I will have my den... my quiet reading spot!

Life is good!

Friday, June 01, 2007

For cryin' out - freakin' loud! I just can't believe this...

Ok, let's get something straight, first of all, I am a non-smoker, but I think the new anti-smoking laws are just a pile of crap. I'm an expectant mother, and though I may have had a cigarette, or two, or three in my past (and I still, on rare occasion, enjoy a really good cigar - but not now while I am pregnant, or even if I choose to breastfeed!), I'm a strong advocate for not smoking around children.

I'd even go as far as to say that smoking in public places is a bad idea, I mean, there are many people with health issues and respiratory problems who do not need to be exposed to second-hand smoke. I understand, and those people deserve to be able to go out and have a good time and not suffer from smokers' constant puffing.

Am I double-talking? No. Not at all. What I'd propose are establishments that are smoker-friendly ONLY and establishments that are SMOKE-FREE only. Why does one group have to suffer at the expense of the rest? I know, I know, for YEARS... YEARS... non-smokers were, in effect, "held at smokepoint" (and I have also been in this category). My significant other, and most of my friends are true smokers, and I have no problem with that -- when they (including my own sweet mother) come over for a visit, we all simply just go outside.

What really bothers me is the "snitch and tell" attitude that is in effect. Here's the way I see it, if you are in a place that you don't want to be in, it's very simple. WALK OUT.

Gosh, girl, you've got a really bad attitude!" Not really. When I took a look at the new smoking laws and complaints in my area (snitch and tell), this is what I found:

You can read the full text of the smoking laws and any reported violations, which I found in my local newspaper, posted as a link here.

Ok, good. Now we can see where all those mean ol' nasty smokers are allowed to congregate and offend the sensibilities of "all good and righteous people" - right?

Ha! Take a look... most of the reported violations here, in my area, are at CLUBS that should have the RIGHT to "light up" if they so choose. They've more than earned the right. No one is FORCING a non-smoker to join up, walk in, or to hang out with those good and honorable men and women who have CHOSEN to fight, who have served, and who have defended our country. They can't even enjoy the personal freedoms they fought to defend!

What hypocrisy! What arrogance!

Those clubs are:

The American Legion
The Veterans of Foreign Wars
AmVets

Now, I am much less familiar with these other organizations (see below), or what they stand for, but it's the same principle: They are PRIVATE MEMBERS-ONLY CLUBS, and, they, too, should have the right to light up in their own facilities. No one has held a gun to my head, made me walk into the Elks Lodge and said... "Sit down, we want and need to give you lung cancer!"

Those clubs are:
Loyal Order of the Moose
Moose Lodge
Eagles Club
Elks Club

Since these are "members-only" establishments, and if they want to light up, they should be allowed to do so.

Further, no one is forcing a non-smoker to WORK there, and the public IS ALLOWED in these clubs -- at the INVITATION OF A MEMBER.

You want to talk about obnoxious, rude, socially unacceptable behavior? Be a friend of a MEMBER and then go in and report that organization. That's just lovely behavior, isn't it? Kinda reminds me of the Greeks and their use of Trojan Horse... or that old expression, "a wolf in sheep's clothing". It's kinda like being invited over to a dear friend's place and then stealing something behind their back. It's two-faced, and I'm angry about it.

Granted, I can see NO SMOKING ALLOWED in restaurants, and I have no issue with that. Why drop major bucks on nice perfume (I love wearing Obsession or Opium) and getting "dressed to the nines" for some special occasion, or just for the fun of it, only to come home smelling like street trash when surrounded by smokers? I CAN see "the other side" because I've been there.

But, come on, some places just need to be exempted from this law: Private clubs and bars.

Now, let's talk about bars. A bar IS a bar, for cryin' out loud, and people go there to unwind, get their minds off things, shoot a game of pool, or whatever, and having a smoke with a drink is "what is done."

What, shall we sit there, with a Black Russian (pick your own favorite beverage and insert here) in one hand, while philosophically discussing "what's wrong with this country" while thoughtfully munching on a freakin' carrot (or celery!) stick in the other? Didn't even Bugs Bunny "light up" in some old re-run? Gawd.

Oh, please.

Some establishments should just be excluded from this ridiculous law. Period.

If we REALLY wanted to make changes with "air purity laws" - let's start with those multi-million (or billion) dollar companies that have been PROFITING off of toxic pollutants for YEARS...

Yes. Let's start THERE!

Just check this page (courtesy of Cincinnati.com) to make the search to find out what's going on in YOUR AREA... (as far as I know, this law applies only in Ohio).