In My House

10 Recent Pregnancy Thoughts: 36 Weeks

This is one last pregnancy update before the little gal arrives. Hopefully in a few short weeks I’ll be posting some pictures here of a healthy, happy girl and her proud big sis.

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10. The hip pain has subsided a bit thanks to a prenatal massage and fabulous pedicure last weekend. Now to power through three more weeks!

9: I am relieved we got good news at our follow-up ultrasound this past week. And the girl has the chubbiest of cheeks. Thank you, ice cream from Silver Lining Creamery, of which I cannot get enough.

8. Is it too early to box up and donate these maternity clothes? I’m so. tired. of. them.

7. Often when getting up from the couch or out of bed I feel like a turtle that got flipped onto its back and can’t move.

6. I continue to want cereal constantly.

5. When something falls on the floor I have a lengthy internal debate over if it is worth retrieving.

4. People keep saying “it’ll start going really fast now.” I’m still waiting for it to “start going really fast.”

3. Nesting update: I will overzealously organize any stack of papers, magazines, etc. I encounter. If I come over to your house and go through your mail or clean out a closet, don’t be offended.

2. I’m way past the joking stage of pregnancy (is there one?) so don’t expect any April Fool’s Day labor jokes out of me. If I call and say I’m in labor, I’m in labor.

1: As annoying as it is to have everyone looking at my gigantic belly all the time, at least I’m not like April the Giraffe being monitored by a 24/7 live video feed where people can watch to see if I’m in labor yet. So there’s that.

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In My House

10 Recent Pregnancy Thoughts: 34 Weeks

Not too much longer now. I’m running out of steam and I am ready to meet this little gal. I continue to obsess over my excitement at seeing my older daughter meet her sister. Here are a few other thoughts running through my brain.

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10. I usually fall fast asleep by 9 p.m. but then awake in the middle of the night for an hour or so. How do I fill this hour? By reading headlines on The Onion and trying to keep from waking my family with my giggling.

9: I think I probably looked really awesome when I was dusting my living room and jamming out to Tool at eight months preggo.

8. My hip pain has now turned into full leg pain.

7. I need more ice cream.

6. I am looking forward to enjoying a nice, cool glass of pinot grigio and I’m not afraid to admit it.

5. You don’t have to comment on my belly. I know it’s there. You know it’s there. Let’s talk about the weather.

4. I watch the gummies in my last bottle of prenatal vitamins dwindle like sand in an hour-glass and it gives me hope.

3. Lemon lime Gatorade is my new favorite thing. I like to pour it in a Riedel glass to really let it breathe.

2. This time around I’m not going to be shy about limiting visitors to the house right after the baby is born. So please don’t take offense with my honesty, said visitors. And if you visit, please bring food or pinot grigio (see #6).

1: It makes me giggle when people ask if I have the nursery ready. It has been ready since Thanksgiving. That’s just who I am.

Adventures

Why Do We Love Scaring New Moms?

During my recent weekend getaway with my best pal, I had the privilege of getting a mani/pedi from a really great lady. A mom of two small children herself, she struck up a conversation with me about pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting. We began chatting about how people love to scare pregnant women and new moms with horror stories. Why do we do this as a society?

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(Photo by Alyssa Crawford Photography)

In the past few days as I have reflected on my fears about becoming a mother again in the very near future, I have come to realize most of the anxiety I have comes not from my actual concerns, but from the general negativity of other people.

People cannot wait to warn you how hard everything is going to be. My nail technician told me a story about how the nurse caring for her while she gave birth to her son came rushing into the room and said “We’re so busy tonight! We just sent three new babies to the NICU!” (Not exactly what a soon-to-be mommy needs to hear.)

Although parenting is not without its challenges, few experiences have been as difficult or uncomfortable as people hype them up to be. Before I became a mother I was under the impression that children were perpetually teething and had disgusting blow-outs on a daily basis.

I also realize how important my own words are to new or expectant moms. Maybe I should steer clear of the emergency surgery stories and just say how awesome it is the first time you see your new baby. I can do a better job of leaving out the details of sleepless nights and just mention how amazing it is to watch your little one learn and grow.

After all, most of parenting is really, really great. That’s the little secret I don’t think we share enough.

Adventures

Airline Travel in the Third Trimester

At the end of February, I went on a fun and much-needed trip to Salt Lake City to meet up with my best pal and see a concert. I was about 31 weeks pregnant at the time and a few friends have asked me about the logistics of flying in the third trimester so I thought I’d share.

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It seems my obstetrician and most major airlines agree that flying after the 33-week mark is not a good idea, but up until that point, if you’re experiencing a healthy pregnancy, traveling can still be part of your life!

These are my tips for ensuring a safe and stress-free flight in the third trimester:

Consult your physician: This seems like an obvious one, but do it. Be clear about the plans for the trip.

Take a doctor’s note to the airport: I was never asked to show mine, but I had it in my purse just in case. The airlines I checked recommended this and said pregnant women may be asked to show a note from their health care provider clearing them for air travel.

Buy trip insurance: For less than $30 I purchased a policy when booking my flight that included reimbursement if I were to go into labor prior to taking the trip.

Hydrate: I take an empty water bottle and fill it up frequently. My doctor couldn’t stress this one enough. It might mean more bathroom breaks, but staying hydrated is so important.

Move, stretch, walk: Walk a lot in the airport before boarding the plane. While on the plane, get up and move (you’ll need to use the bathroom anyway) and continue moving and stretching your legs while seated.

Relax (on the trip): My friend and I kept the activities to a minimum. We took in a concert, did some light shopping, and had a spa day. If you’re traveling for work, take advantage of downtime to rest.

Keep it short: Salt Lake City in February isn’t the most lavish and exotic of destinations, but it is less than a two-hour direct flight from my home airport. It provided a good location to see a great concert and was convenient for each of us to reach by flight.

In My House

10 Recent Pregnancy Thoughts: 31 Weeks

I’m 31 weeks along now and so here is a super fun and informative update for you!

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10. I have moments of forgetting my tummy is large: Like when I turned around in the break room at work and knocked a bottle of water off a table in front of several people.

9: This is our last baby. Seriously. So, dear members of the public, stop saying “ohhhh, you never know.”

8. I could eat cereal for every meal. I can also eat everything else for every meal, but the cereal craving is taking center stage right now.

7. How am I going to carry everything? It seems I always have multiple bags in-hand and I’m slightly concerned adding another little person’s gear to my baggage will be a little crazy-cray.

6. I cannot wait for the moment my daughters meet one another. I am absolutely certain it will be one of the best moments of my life.

5. My right hip feels like a storm is moving in. Ouch.

4. Some much-needed time with my bestie last weekend fueled my soul. I’m feeling strong and geared up to face these last eight weeks head-on.

3. An airport delay can be really relaxing when Delta orders free pizza and you have some good books on the Kindle. Is that the pregnancy zen stuff finally taking hold?

2. Does this heartburn really mean the baby is going to have a lot of hair?

1: Time finally seems to be speeding up a bit!

In My House

10 Recent Pregnancy Thoughts: 26 Weeks

I’m 26 weeks along now. Some people say they feel like this pregnancy is going quickly. Those are the people who are not carrying the baby. However, I’m sure April will be here before I know it!

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10: I have been experiencing a heightened desire to correct people’s grammar. So far I have been able to restrain myself because I don’t want to be that person, but if I see one more misplaced apostrophe on Facebook or hear someone say “ain’t” again in the next three months, I might come unglued.

9: However, if grammatically sound, people’s comments regarding my pregnancy aren’t bothering me as much as they did with my first pregnancy. The other day a woman with whom I am acquainted said “wow, that baby bump is really getting big.” I just let it roll off. Maybe it is just that I am more confident in my ability to deliver, raise a baby, and return my body to a state of relative fitness despite the extra pounds and Cesarean scar.

8: How does an OCD gal know if she’s actually nesting? I believe I’m in a permanent state of nesting, so I don’t know how much of my desire to organize my sock drawer or dust the entertainment stand a dozen times a day is pregnancy-related or just my usual personality.

7: I haven’t told my husband this yet, but I’m pretty sure I’ll emerge from the Stevie Nicks/Pretenders concert in February with a new list of baby girl names to include: Stevie, Chrissie, Nicky, Gypsy, Rhiannon, and Gold Dust Woman.

6: Take down your Christmas decorations or I’m going to puke. I had intense morning (all day) sickness with my first pregnancy that reached its pinnacle around Christmas and with this pregnancy, also experienced a great deal of nausea around the holidays. Every time I drive by a lingering plastic snowman or holiday wreath I feel as if I could be sick.

5: My ribs hurt. That’s where the pain seems to be concentrated this time around. I remember my hips and legs hurting with the first pregnancy, but this time it’s all ribs and my upcoming massage cannot come soon enough!

4: I’m not cool anymore. Maybe I never was, but being pregnant is a blatant daily reminder of this fact. It makes me think of what my Connecticut friend Tracee said she thinks when she drops her toddler off at her mother’s for a few hours. She said: “I just feel free and cool again. I don’t even smoke, but I just want to go buy a pack of cigarettes and roll the window down and crank up the music.”

3: Will I be able to love this baby as much as I love my first daughter? I realize the answer is most likely yes, but it is hard to imagine being able to love someone else as much as I love her.

2: I hope my older daughter is still excited when the baby actually arrives. Lately, her elation at her soon-to-be big sister status has compelled her to approach strangers in stores to let them know she has a baby sister in Mommy’s tummy. It’s her favorite topic of conversation.

1: Fewer than 100 days! My doctor won’t let me surpass my due date because of complications with my first pregnancy so we officially are within the 100-day mark! That is worth celebrating.

In My House

My Sanity Saving Pregnancy To Do List

Pregnancy can try the patience of even the most tolerant woman. It is so very worth the wait when the baby finally arrives, but when you are just beyond the halfway point, the counting down of days, nausea (still?! Just when I think that part is over!), and stretching of body parts can push one to the breaking point.

To maintain sanity, I have put together a list of fun, positive activities to keep my mind occupied and my body healthy during the last three and a half months of pregnancy.

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Have an amazing date with my hubby. I might even pay. He has been a rock star lately taking care of our two-year-old so I can rest after work.

Keep my toes freshly pedicured, even when I can’t see them. As I was being prepped for a C-section with my first daughter, I remember the nurses complimenting me on my pedi. It’s funny that I remember that moment, but it really provided some great casual conversation in an otherwise freaky moment.

Have a girls’ weekend with my bestie. It doesn’t hurt that this involves meeting up for a Stevie Nicks concert.

Relish quality time with my daughter. My two-year-old is extremely excited to be a big sister, but I also recognize it will be a major life change for her. She is at such a fun age and I am determined to absorb every bit of her spirited personality. I want to make sure I devote enough time and attention to each of these dear girls so they always know how special and loved they are.

Work hard. But not too hard. Focusing on projects at work reminds me I have more of a purpose than just cranking out babies, but I realized I overdid it a bit at work with my first pregnancy. I’m in a new job now with better work-life balance and I intend to take a longer maternity leave this time.

Keep the freezer stocked with ice cream from my favorite shop. Mine happens to be this adorable little shop in Rapid City, South Dakota, which features the most divine ice cream made in-house.

Read. Read. Read. And not books about pregnancy. I read a couple of pregnancy books my first time around and I did pick up a copy of The Essential C-Section Guide by Maureen Connolly and Dana Sullivan to prepare this time, but getting bogged down in constant pregnancy reading causes my mind to go into overdrive analyzing all the possible situations that could go wrong. I’m diving head first into this NPR list and it is a great distraction from all things pregnancy and baby.

Have a prenatal massage. I had a prenatal massage at about seven months with my first pregnancy and it was absolutely the most relaxing experience ever. I felt like a new woman and it really helped relieve pain and energize my body for the remainder of the pregnancy.

Connect with other pregnant women. During my first pregnancy, one of my best friends was pregnant during the exact same time (her son is a week younger than my daughter). Having that camaraderie was amazing, but this time around I really don’t know any other pregnant women. I have decided to check out some of the pregnancy blogs online. My favorite is Pregnant Chicken.

Touch my toes every day. This seems like a really strange thing, but when I was pregnant with my first daughter I made it a point to bend over and touch my toes daily. If you do it every day, you should be able to for the entirety of the pregnancy. There was something about maintaining that capability and the process of stretching daily felt great throughout my pregnant body.

Be grateful. This is most likely my last pregnancy, which really doesn’t make me sad at all, but at the same time, I realize I should remember these moments and be glad I got to experience the miracle of pregnancy twice in my life.