Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Baby Bump!

Here, dear readers, is the first official photograph of my baby bump.I hope I don't offend anyone with my exposed belly.
Actually, come to think of it, I don't really care if I do.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Week 13: And I have nothing to wear

This week, according to Fit Pregnancy, my baby-to-be is 2 1/2 to 3 inches long or "the size of a medium goldfish." Now, all I can think about are Goldfish crackers. Great. Because with the decrease in nausea, my appetite has really increased. (Not that I'm thinking about eating babies, obviously!)

Some of my clothes are starting to get a little too snug. I am really not ready to buy any actual maternity clothes, though. So, maybe I just need to buy some yoga pants. They're nice and stretchy, right? Without looking baggy and sloppy.

Fit Pregnancy also tells me I'll have more energy. I have to call BS on that one. Maybe they don't mean those of us who are of "advanced maternal age." Because, whether it's my age or the change in the weather, I haven't felt any more energetic yet. In fact, I've been just as tired -- if not more -- than ever.

And just when I thought week 13 was going to be all peaches and cream, they tell me, "Your smell and taste aversions will probably stick with you for the rest of your pregnancy." So even thought I was hoping to go back to my pre-pregnancy eating habits, I probably won't be eating too many vegetables or fish -- except maybe Goldfish crackers, that is.

Monday, October 18, 2010

I also have hopes

I know I mostly talk about how worried I am about this or that, but I have hopes, too. My Saturday was split between a morning workout event and an evening fund-raising event. And because this pregnant lady has a hard time functioning without her mid-afternoon nap, there wasn't much time in the day for doing fun Saturday kinds of things. Still, the S.O. and I did go to the library, followed by sitting in the sun outside Starbucks (decaf only for me, thanks) and browsing at the bike store.

That short -- yet enjoyable outing -- led me to think about some of the things I hope my baby-to-be gets from me.

I hope my baby enjoys books and reading as much as I do. The library is one of my very favorite places and has been for as long as I can remember. As an elementary-school student I helped shelve books after school, and I even did it for one summer "professionally." Yes, for a short time I got paid to look at books. I plan to read to baby from the time he or she is born.

I also hope my baby enjoys the outdoors as much as I do (to offset all those hours sitting around reading). In the bike store, I looked at a stroller/trailer combo that would allow me to walk/run with baby, as well as pull baby behind my bike. It also got me thinking about baby backpacks and slings (the ones to carry baby, not for baby to carry) for long walks and hiking. I want my baby to see the wonders of the outdoors and the joy of being active even before he or she can walk. I hope my baby is born healthy and am doing all I can now to make that happen. I also know I can contribute to how healthy he or she grows up to be.

I know we only have some control over our children and the way they grow up. But I hope I can set a good example in all the things I do.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Have another little piece of my heart now, baby

I saw the doctor today for my 12-week appointment. I'm guessing these monthly appointments will normally be pretty uneventful: Sit around in the waiting room, get weighed, pee in a cup, have my blood pressure taken, sit around in the exam room, see the doctor for about two minutes.

Today, though, was the first day we got to hear the Nubbin's heart beat on the little in-office hand-held dealy. First we heard the slow, steady thump, thump of my heartbeat, then slightly to the left of my blood vessel, we heard the quick whoosh, whoosh, whoosh of Nubbin's heart. The little bugger even moved around a bit, making a sloshing sound. Apparently, Nubbin moves around quite a bit but is too small for me to feel.

For some reason, this was way more emotional to me than seeing Nubbin on the ultrasound. Maybe because it's the first time the doctor has heard the heartbeat. Maybe because the heartbeat is still strong at 12 weeks.

I've been feeling a bit blue for the past few days and, despite, Yoga Mama trying to make me feel more connected to the baby growing inside me, I actually felt really disconnected -- from the baby and from the world in general. But hearing that little whoosh, whoosh, whoosh has improved my mood and made me realize, this whole pregnancy thing is kind of a big deal. I'm going to be a mom. That's probably the scariest stuff right there.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Week 12: All about high fiber and low impact

I'm right at week 12 now and definitely feeling better. Although, today is a gloomy fall day, dreary, cool and rainy, and it has me feeling a little blue. And my e-mail newsletter from Fit Pregnancy didn't really help.
This is about the time the muscles of your stomach slow down, making your stools harder and drier and making you gassier.
This whole miracle of life thing can be pretty gross sometimes. They do go on to tell me that brisk walks, high-fiber foods -- like fresh vegetables and dried fruit -- plenty of water will help keep my intestinal tract moving.

Then there's this sentence about my growing baby: "This begins the age when the fetus starts to look really cut in those womb pictures." I think they probably mean "cute." But I was working out an awful lot before I got pregnant and this is Fit Pregnancy, so maybe the little Nubbin is totally "cut" and buff.

Speaking of working out, I tried my first Yoga Mama workout this morning. It was available to watching instantly on Netflix so I didn't have to buy it. I've never been very good at yoga, and in the past, yoga videos have sometimes been annoying, because it's hard to watch and recreate the poses at the same time. The instructor in this video describes the poses thoroughly, then gives the pose name. Because it's designed for pregnant women, it's very slow and low impact and more about connecting with your body and your baby. It may be a bit airy fairy for some people, but I needed something relaxing on this ugly fall morning. And it did calm my mind.

Friday, October 8, 2010

What if I look like a bag lady?

Last year, I thought I would buy a new ski jacket. The one I have is 10 years old and starting to show its age. But after trying on a few and looking at the price tags, I decided the old one could last awhile longer.

This year -- although we've had a very warm October so far -- I know the coat(s) I have aren't going to cut it for the entire season. At some point, I won't be able to zip up the cute little shorty suede number, and even the ski jacket will probably get too snug to cover the growing bump.

My dilemma is this: Do I buy a maternity coat that I know I will only use for one season? Do I tough it out through winter, just not zipping up my coat, despite the fact that if the temperature dips below 70, I'm cold? Do I buy something cheap? Do I just forgo any kind of fashion and wear one of my significant other's coats (if it would even fit)?

I'm pretty sure I'm just looking for something to worry about that doesn't involve genetic testing and birth defects. But I actually am a little concerned about spending money on a winter coat that I'll just use for a few months -- even a coat from a consignment store or the like.

I worry about buying other things, too, like new shoes. I read that your feet sometimes never return to their pre-pregnancy size. And what about bras? The ones I have now are starting to ... um ... overflow a little bit, but I imagine they're going to overflow a lot more. So, I wait.

And I worry about buying clothes that won't get much use. And I worry about not buying anything nice and spending weeks at a time in my significant other's sweatpants and t-shirts.

I'm beginning to think I should have named this blog 40-Something Worry Wart or Come Worry With Me. Is it possible that I'll get all the worrying out of the way during the next 29 weeks and be a totally chill and relaxed mom?

Don't say anything. I already know the answer to that last one.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

In the news

Wow. The S.O. sent me a link this morning to a BBC News Health story about pregnancy and alcohol. According to the story, "Drinking one or two units of alcohol a week during pregnancy does not raise the risk of developmental problems in the child, a study has suggested."

It goes on to say, "Children born to light drinkers appeared slightly less likely to suffer behavioural problems, and scored higher on cognitive tests, compared with women who stopped during pregnancy."

Considering that most of the news that comes out about pregnant women is all doom and gloom, this was kind of a refreshing change. Granted the story also says, "Official advice remains that women abstain completely during pregnancy." And I don't plan to imbibe unless my doctor tells me I should (not can, should). Still, it's nice to read some news about pregnancy that doesn't lay a huge guilt trip on mom.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I get tips

I subscribed to an e-mail newsletter from "Fit Pregnancy." I had flipped through the magazine once and it seemed to have some decent information. But we have so many magazines around the house, I really didn't want more.

For the most part, I do find the weekly e-mails helpful. They tell me about how the fetus is developing and the changes I'm going through based on my particular week of pregnancy.

Today's e-mail newsletter has some interesting tidbits. For instance, at 11 weeks:
"Your baby is about 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 inches long and weighs about a third of an ounce, the size of a peanut. This is a big week for your baby's growth — she'll double in height. At the end of the week, her head and body will be roughly equal in length. This week also starts an active phase for her — she can turn somersaults, roll over, flex her fingers, hiccup, and stretch. You won't be able to feel her movement for another month and a half."
But then it gives me some tips:
"Are you feeling tired and weak? Try eating a high-iron food, such as linguine with clam sauce, a glass of prune juice, milk with a few tablespoons of blackstrap molasses, liver and onions, or a well-done hamburger."
I'm sure high-iron foods are really, really good for me, especially right now. But just the thought of most of the things they suggest turn my stomach. In fact, some of those things would make me gag even if I weren't 11 weeks pregnant. Prune juice? Liver? Ugh. I love healthy tips, and try to follow good advice, but this is definitely one piece of advice I'll have to skip. I'll find other ways to get my iron. Thank you very much.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Constant changes, constant worries

It seems the nausea is easing up a bit. Considering I'm at nearly 11 weeks, I guess that's "normal" (by now, you probably know my views on "normal"). I'm still exhausted to the point that I feel like someone is slipping drugs into my food and drinks. I'm still breathless from a walk up the stairs. But the nausea has definitely eased up -- and by eased up, I mean I can tolerate most foods. There are still some foods that even thinking about them makes me want to gag, but it's getting better. I do have to watch what I eat because some foods do not sit well. And, to be honest, they aren't the healthiest choices anyway.

Of course, with the easing up of the nausea comes other worries. My biggest worry right now? If I'm not feeling like crap all the time, how do I know things are progressing? Yes, I'm probably a little crazy. Is that "normal?"

My next appointment with the doctor is in 10 days. That puts me right at 12 weeks. I really hope she will then be able to hear a heartbeat with her hand-held Doppler doo-dad. And, yes, I'm pretty sure I'm going to worry about that for the next 10 days.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Just your normal whining

I had absolutely no delusions that being pregnant at 42 would be a walk in the park. I'm really glad I was in good shape before I got pregnant because I can't imagine doing this any other way.

Is it really normal to already have hip pain? Back pain? Insomnia because of the hip and back pain? Are my boobs supposed to feel like they're filled with lava? I'm just past the 10 week mark. Does it just get worse from here? Is it my age or do pregnant women of all ages go through these aches and pains?

Being the worrywart that I am, I wonder about everything and whether or not it's "normal," realizing all the time that "normal" is a relative term. I read and am told it's "normal" to have morning sickness any time of the day through the first trimester. But it's not necessarily abnormal to have no morning sickness at all or for the morning sickness to extend well into the second trimester.

I have picked up "You: Having a Baby" by Dr. Roizen and Dr. Oz (yep, that Dr. Oz) from the library, based on a recommendation from the doctor's office. I've flipped through it. So far, I've not seen any surprises, and it seems that yes, most of the things I'm experiencing are "normal."

I've heard mixed reviews on "What To Expect When You're Expecting." Some people -- including one friend -- swear by it, but the nurse at my OB's said, "Stay away." She tells me there are scenarios in that book that in all her 17 years of practice has never heard of actually happening to a mom-to-be. Sounds like the kind of book that would keep me awake at night -- or, you know, keep me more awake at night.

On the flip side of the scary, another friend gave me a CD of "nurturing music" and a certificate for one session of hypnosis. And yet, despite my fears and aches and nights staring at the ceiling wondering and worrying, I have yet to listen to the CD or call for an appointment. I'm sure it will benefit, even if it just allows me to relax for a few minutes. But I procrastinate because that's really completely normal for me.