Thursday, October 28, 2010

Bullet points!

OK, so I can't figure out how to do bullet points on Blogger. But that's what I'm going for.

I'd love to post a picture of 10-day-old Max, but Scott has the camera, so I'll have to do that later. So here's one of 10-minute-old Max!


Look at those chunky arms & shoulders!

Sometimes I miss punk music. Also, I love the "Black Parade" song by My Chemical Romance. So good!

Max is practicing trying to smile, which is super funny. Most of the time he just does one side of his face, or wrinkles his nose. So cute.

The Neighbor Guy apologized to Scott the other morning! He also thanked him, and said "Your wife really helped to calm things down." From what Scott says, it seems like it was really hard for Neighbor Guy to say all that, so I'm glad he made the effort. Also, this is exactly what I was hoping for--help them calm down, offer any help I could give, and try not to make the guy feel judged or attacked.

Max went in for his 1 week checkup on Monday! He weighed 8# 14oz at birth, 8# 7oz at discharge, and 9# 3oz at one week! He is evidently growing very well!

I am having a super hard time nursing. It's gotten to the point where it's OK, and not SUPER painful, but I need to find a La Leche League meeting or something. And I miss Kaiser--you could go see their lactation consultants as often as you wanted for free. Through my insurance now, it's $95 per "consultation." They do have a free Breastfeeding Support Group, but it meets at a terrible time--I'd have to have someone pick Will up from school AND take Ben & Evy. In theory I know how things should be working, but I just need someone to say, "do it like THIS" several times and help me. I'll figure something out for next week.

I had two kids throw up on me today! Max had been sleeping for a long time, then nursed a TON, and I forgot to have him burp, so when I moved him he projectiled all over me! It was actually funny, because he looked so worried & confused after. Then tonight Evy was eating some Sweet Potato Chips, and started choking a little, but she was trying to push the food back in her mouth with her hand (which I was trying to fight) so she ended up completely throwing everything up, all over my lap and the dining room floor. Which is much better than actually choking, or throwing up on carpet.

Scott bought a bunch of candy earlier this week and I am eating it all! Also I bought doughnuts on Tuesday, because Scott's parents got them several times when they were here and I want doughnuts every day now. Also they are good for midnight snacks when I'm up nursing and suddenly get STARVING.

EVERY TIME I take Max's diaper off to change him he pees, and most of the time he poops too. It's his favorite.

Max's eyes are still baby grey, but the outside edges are just barely starting to lighten. I wonder if they'll be super light blue like Ben's, or more regular-type like Will's & Evy's?

I'm reading the complete stories of Sherlock Holmes, and despite the first one which said lots of mean things about the early LDS church (including that Brigham Young killed anyone who said anything negative about the church or didn't want to practice polygamy) I'm really liking it, and it's very mind-provoking. I can't wait to watch the movie again after I'm done. And I figured out where the phrase "the curious incident of the dog in the night-time" came from!

The Toys R Us Christmas catalog came in the mail today, and the boys spent most of the afternoon in Will's bed completely absorbed and incredibly excited.

Evy loves hair clippies SO much. So much that she just can't stop touching them, and pulling them out to look at them, and showing them to me with a HUGE smile. I think I replaced her clippy about 890 times today, and she loved every second of it. Me, not so much.

Will's soccer practice was cancelled this week because the coach wanted to watch the Giants game. It worked out fine for me, but I still think it's hilarious.

Also hilarious is http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.com/. Oh my gosh you guys. The cake one and the tooth/park one are SO funny.

There are a lot of fun Things happening for Halloween that we are skipping this year on account of having a tiny baby, and I feel a little bad for my kids. But we went to a fun party today with friends from church (I was only an hour late, no biggie) and tomorrow there's the Halloween Costume Parade at Will's school, and we might go to the Trunk or treat at the church. So still some fun stuff.

The left shift key on our keyboard hasn't worked for years, and I've forgotten how much harder that makes it to type one-handed.

Things have been going really well the last few days. All the kids are doing well (did you we kind of have a lot of kids now?) and everyone I talk to is offering to help, and my friend (and Will's best friend's mom) has been taking Will to school so I don't have to bundle up Tiny Baby and get 4 kids unbuckled and everything. So thanks for being so kind and helpful everyone!

My third grade GATE teacher told us that "nice" was just the worst word ever, with the most watered-down meaning ever, and that we weren't ever allowed to use it in front of her. I still have a really hard time using it and feel like everyone must be judging my incredibly small vocabulary whenever I do.

The end!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Max's Birth Story--Finally!


Maximus Adam Peltz, born 10/18/10 at 10:44am, 8# 14oz, 20" long

Well, Saturday night nothing happened, and I didn't get very much sleep, which was a bit disappointing. On Sunday I had a feeling of "this is the day!" all day, but didn't want to jinx it by saying anything or even thinking it too much. At church there were a zillion variations of "Are you still pregnant" which is always hilarious. It actually rained Sunday, so we had to drive for the first time since we moved to this house. Scott took a nap that afternoon, and the kids and I and Scott's parents took a long walk. We had super tasty Pepper Steak for dinner. When Scott's parents left for their hotel for the evening, his dad said something like, "OK, give us a call at 3:00 am, we'll be ready!"

Later, I heard the neighbor and his daughter yelling at each other. I think she's 13 or so, and is mostly there on weekends. Usually we hear her yell something along the lines of "I HATE YOU!" and then she storms out. We're always kinda sad at this, but figured it was just a "typical" teenage/parent conflict. This night, I was pretty sure I heard him yelling that he hated her back. After almost two hours, with us hearing them yell every once in a while, Scott let Tasha out into the backyard and could hear him yelling "I hate you, I don't love you, why don't you just leave!" (with a LOT of swearing). And it was like 11:00 at night, so it's not like she could have left. Anyway, I decided we needed to do something. I don't think he had hit her, so I didn't think calling the cops would be good, and I thought if Scott went over there Angry Guy was more likely to punch him or something, So I went over there. He didn't answer the door after I pounded on it several times, but I could hear them from the side of there house where the window was open. Now he was saying, "Go ahead, call the cops, I don't care. What are they gonna do?" So I yelled out, "Hey S!" a few times, and finally he said "What!?" I said, "Hey man, can I talk to you for a second?" He asked who it was, and I said, "Colleen from next door." He came to the door and said "What do you want?" I said it seemed like they were having a really hard night, and I asked if there was anything I could do to help them out. He was very mad and swearing and asked what I thought I could do to help. I offered to have his daughter come over for a little while, so they could have some time apart and cool off. He was pretty mad, said something about how we never say hi to him or anything and he doesn't know us and what do I think I'm doing asking to have his daughter come over, and just to go the F away. So I said OK, I was just trying to help. As I was walking away he started saying things about how we already have our hands full, and that maybe someone should take OUR kids away. He was totally trying to intimidate me and knock me down, which I have plenty of experience with, so most of what he said just made me feel sad for them. And I know he was just trying to get to me, but, he DID get to me. How terrible for anyone, even this guy, to think that someone should take my kids away. Anyway, by now Scott was standing out on our porch, and the guy was like, "What about you, do you have an F'n problem too?" and Scott said, "I do have a problem with your language." and the guy said, "Well F you too, what do you think about that!" We were pretty worried about what to do next. Do we call the cops? Child Services' 24 hour hotline? I figured either he would realize it was time to leave it and just go to bed, or he'd blame her and escalate it. So Scott & I said a prayer together, and both decided that things would be OK for tonight, and that we would decide what other things we needed to do in the future. We haven't seen him since then, but I think things are going to be VERY awkward whenever we do. So I think we finally went to bed a little after midnight. I had a few contractions all day, but nothing that was ever painful or even uncomfortable.

Then I woke up a little before 2:00, and I was having really frequent contractions. They still weren't hurting, but they were slightly uncomfortable. So I got up and timed 8 or 9 of them, and they were 3-4 minutes apart. So I started trying to wake up Scott, and called a whole bunch of numbers for my doctor's answering service, which, not surprisingly, told me to go in to the hospital. We called Scott's parents, and they walked in the door right at 3:00am.

When we got to the hospital they checked me and I was between and 6 and a 7. They started the antibiotics for the GBS, and put in a whole IV (told you they would, Eric!). I decided not to fight it, because it's really not that big of a deal. It probably took about an hour for them to do all the check-in questions and set the room up for delivery and all that, and after that I was at a sure 7. I started reading The Hunger Games, and Scott slept a little. My doctor came in at about 6 and checked me, and I was at a 9. Starting at about 7:30 or so we decided to walk around a bit. I had tried to sleep, because I was getting REALLY tired, but the contractions were just a little too strong to sleep through. If I was reading I barely noticed them, but they hurt when I was trying to sleep. So I woke Scott up and we went walking around to L & D department. My nurse kept telling me not to go too far, because she wanted to be able to get me back to my room when my water broke. She said my amniotic sac was super huge and bulging and she kept thinking it was going to break any second. So we walked around for a while, went back to the room & got the second dose of antibiotics, and read, then we walked around some more. The contractions were getting strong enough that I had some trouble walking through them, but I just took tiny steps and breathed real big through them. Finally at about 10:00 I started thinking that things were getting close. The nurse checked me and I was still a 9, and my water broke. There was meconium in there, so they told the NICU to be in the room at delivery to make sure Max's lungs were OK. My nurse kept asking if I needed to push yet, and I said that I thought I could, but it wasn't that scary frantic "Oh my gosh I need to push NOW!!!!" feeling yet. I was starting to worry about that, because my doctor was in her office 400 yards and 2 floors away, and they were going to call her when I REALLY needed to push. I guess the nurse and Scott didn't understand that I wanted them to call the doctor, because they were both kinda astounded at the fact that I was talking normally and seemed totally happy. Plus the nurse kept asking me questions during contractions and expecting me to answer, when I really needed to just tune her out and rock back and forth and concentrate on relaxing all the different parts of my body. She checked me again and I was still a 9, so she told me to lay on my side for a while to get things the rest of the way dilated. I think I had three normal contractions, and then IT came. The thing I was fearing--I needed to push RIGHT NOW, it hurt like crazy, and they still had to call my doctor! The nurse also had to check me and I couldn't roll over onto my back, because even though I was trying hard not to I was pushing a little, and I knew that I wouldn't be able to resist pushing if they put me on my back. So she checked me on my side, said something like Oh yeah, you're ready!" and ran out of the room to call my doctor. By now I was starting to get pissed, I just wanted to deliver this baby and I didn't care WHO caught him, and I was just mad at this stupid system and just wanted the doctor on call who I didn't have to wait for to deliver him. Thankfully my doctor got there really quickly. I think I had 3 monster contractions, although it's hard to tell because at that point they don't fully end. They turned me onto my back, and I had my eyes shut tight because for some reason that was imperative for dealing with the pain, and no one really told me what was going on. I had no idea when everyone was ready or when I was allowed to push and stop fighting it. I'm not sure when I finally decided to go, but I did, and his head came out in 1 and a half pushes. Then I had a lull in the contraction, and they told me I had to deliver his shoulders and push right NOW. I said, "I can't!" and they said "You have to!" (not, yes you can, good job, or anything encouraging like that). So I did, and it was really hard, because it was all me and I didn't have any help from my uterus. Then he was out! And the doctor said "He's really heavy, someone take him from me!" And I heard Scott say he had lots of hair. At some point Scott came around near my head and was holding my hand, which was good. Also I screamed a lot, and my voice really hurt afterwards. I'm pretty sure that screaming as loud as you can is very helpful, since my body did it all on it's own and I certainly never decided to start yelling. Anyway, I kinda wanted to rest for a few seconds, but the doctor immediately started poking & prodding and massaging my uterus and delivered the placenta really quickly. I had a small tear, which she had to fix RIGHT THEN, and I was super flinchy and everything hurt and I was anticipating all the pain and it was terrible. At some point while they were fixing things up they put Max next to me, and I really wanted to hold him and nurse him, but I was stuck where I was. I think if they had given me a second to sit up and hold him in my arms and nurse him while they were working on me it would have been better. They also started me on Pitocin without telling me, which pissed me off. No big deal at this point, but I didn't want them to do it, and they did it all sneaky without saying anything. She said I had a little bit of extra bleeding, and because of what happened with Will's delivery they wanted to be extra careful, and they gave me an injection of something else to help with the bleeding. I'm not sure what it was, but I'm pretty sure it made me really drowsy and fuzzy-headed and nauseous.

After they weighed Max, he was laying in the heated bed dealie & a nurse was checking him, and Scott was standing at the end of the bed and he peed all over Scott! He was probably only about 10 minutes old. And I think he's peed almost every time he's had a diaper change since, although now I've got him figured out, so he's only peed on the walls & floor & himself a few times.

My nurse was getting ready to send me to the Mother-Baby unit, and kept telling me to order my breakfast, but I was feeling super nauseous and didn't really want to. I had been starving up until the injection, since I hadn't eaten anything real since like 7:00 the night before. I ended up ordering French toast & a blueberry muffin and eggs. They put me in a wheelchair to go to the new room, and that made me feel even more sick. They delivered my food to the new room, and I was only able to eat a little French toast which made me sad, because I love blueberry muffins. I can't remember all that was going on, but nurses kept coming & going and doing stuff and I really needed to sleep. I think I was finally able to sleep at like 1:00 in the afternoon or something.

Anyway, all in all I have decided that epidurals make things worse, and it is WAY easier to have babies without drugs. I was actually surprised by the fact that my contractions didn't hurt that much. I think it's mostly because of my distractions (book, talking to Scott about stuff while we were walking) and when each started getting painful I just focused on relaxing all my tense parts, and I rocked a little, and I thought, "OK, it's starting to build up, that's OK, it will reach the peak pretty soon, OK, here's the peak, and now it's coming back down" and kinda talked myself through it. I kinda got into a zone and just absorbed all of it, and didn't panic or fight the contractions or tense up, and I know that this part was easy to handle, and the only part I couldn't handle was the pushing part, but that was OK because it was super short, and almost a relief, because it is so active and SO close to being done. Scott is just in amazement now I think, after seeing me do 2 epidural babies and 2 natural babies, and he said that it was obviously much better for me with the latter two. So, you can do it! You don't need an epidural! It's WAY better without!

We had a bunch of issues with Max's blood glucose levels the next day, but I think it's nap time, so I'll write about that another time.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Still no baby!

Well, Wednesday afternoon I was feeling yucky all day, and in the evening I had a few contractions! They were like 1/2 an hour apart, and didn't hurt at all. I think I had a few during the day, but they were so mild I couldn't tell if he was stretching or if it was a contraction. Anyway, that evening after I was sure I'd had several (albeit small) contractions I got really scared. Maybe a little panicky. Then Scott asked me to help him study (his last midterm was Thursday). I felt a little bad, because I was really getting anxious because I was scared of impending labor (pain) and wanted to go to bed. When Will was born we had been up for like 48 hours before he actually came out, and it was so exhausting, so I really wanted to get some sleep in before things sped up. We ended up going over all the stuff that Scott needed to, and I practically ran off to bed. I don't think I even brushed my teeth. Then nothing else happened. And I have to admit, I was really relieved. Thursday Scott's parents and I went for a walk around the neighborhood, and it didn't help at all. Thursday evening more contractions started, but still super small and FAR apart. Then I was sitting on the couch reading and there was one that actually hurt a little, and I freaked out again, took a shower, and rushed to bed. But there weren't any more after the slightly painful one. Yesterday Scott stayed home from work (because we figured we'd be having a baby pretty soon!) and we all walked to Jamba Juice and back, which is about a mile each way. Still nothing. That evening we went out to dinner at Black Angus with Scott's parents & his brother's family. I had a chicken BLT that was super yummy. I felt really yucky the whole time though. My back and stomach hurt, and I had terrible heartburn and my leg cramps were super bad. Thankfully, I only had a few tiny contractions. But I left right after dinner and Scott took the kids with the rest of his family to play somewhere for a few hours, and I went to bed. When they got home, Ben threw up a ton. I should have known it would happen, because he kept asking when the food was going to come and why it was taking them so long to cook it in a kinda panicked way at dinner, which was pretty out of character for him. I had a fleeting thought that maybe his tummy was hurting, but I shrugged it off. I hate it when I do that! Anyway, he and Will were exhausted, and it was way too late of a night for them, and it was really hard getting them into bed. Ever since Will started school we just can't stay up late with them anymore (homeschool FTW!). I had a few more small contractions, but they went away once I went to bed too. Today I stayed home with Ben, and Scott took Will & Evy to Will's soccer game, and then to Vasona for a picnic with his family. Ben has been totally fine all day, but I do NOT want to leave my poor in-laws with a vomiting child while I'm having a baby, and it would be hard on Ben too. So we decided to play it safe and just keep him home and let him have a movie day. When Scott got home I went to Target to get a few things, and use my coupons I bought on eBay for Pediasure for Evy. It took 38 minutes to get there instead of like 8, because this two-lane road was getting repaved, and there was a TON of super slow, backed up traffic, and all the left turns were closed, and I couldn't get out. I did get to hear some Green Day and Weezer on the radio, although pretty much everything else on the radio these days is lame. No contractions at all today.

I think I read somewhere that the mother's mental state can have a bearing on labor progression, and I'm wondering if my freaking out is messing things up. I'm going to try really hard next time to get pumped up and not be scared.

Yesterday was my ultrasound to check for adequate fluid levels and the non-stress test (NST). Scott actually got to come with me! I think this was only the third appointment he was able to come to. I weighed 148 (but with the old-timey scale). For the NST they hooked me up to a fetal heart rate monitor and a contractions monitor, gave me a juice box, and let me sit there for 20 minutes or so. Then my doctor came in and looked at the monitoring strip dealie, said that there were a couple tiny contractions, and that the baby was moving plenty and had a great heart rate. Then she got out this little plastic thing that buzzed like an alarm clock, and she said that she was going to put it on my belly to wake the baby up. She did, and he just jumped and moved super fast and squirmed to the other side of my belly! He totally panicked! It made me so sad. My poor tiny baby having to get all scared like that. :( Afterwards we did an ultrasound and she checked my cervix. I'm dilated to a 3.5 (up from 3 on Tuesday) and she said there is tons of fluid in there, so there's no reason I can't go past due. I have another appointment for next Tuesday (and I'm not going to let her use that buzzer thing! So there!) to do another NST, ultrasound, and visit with my doctor. Hopefully I won't make it till then, but at this rate it seems like I will!

Also, I took down the counting-down-to-baby-time thing, because it started going back up after my due date!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Just a little bit closer...

Today I had another doctor appointment. This time they had a brand new, digital scale! Not a real doctor's office-type scale, but the clear glass kind that you buy at Bed Bath & Beyond. But still! So I weighed 149.2 (and I'm maintaining that I have still yet to break 150, because that old timey scale last time was wobbling quite a bit and didn't balance at 150!). My belly measured 37 again, for like the third week in a row. His heart rate sounded really fast to me, but the doppler counter said it was "high 140s" which is normal ("Never trust machines for monitoring!"). I think that he is flipping sideways all the time, and that's why we can see so much CRAZY movement all the time. Usually his back is on my left side, and there are huge waves of movement from one side of my belly to the other. Today she said his back is on my right side, and I'm sure he'll twist around like normal tonight. I'm fine with that (and honestly watching him move a ton is very funny and entertaining) as long as he stays head-down and is face-down when it's delivery time. I measured 3 cm today, and she didn't say how effaced I was. So I'm still up a little from last week.

I go in on Friday morning for a quick ultrasound to make sure there's enough amniotic fluid in there still, and a non-stress test. Then I'll go in for the NST twice a week until I deliver or the 28th, when I've agreed to let her induce me. Hopefully he comes MUCH sooner than that, however. Scott's parents leave on the 21st, and Scott is going to one million work meetings the next week. It has been really great having Scott's parents here--I haven't had to cook or wash dishes or take all the kids to drop Will off at school the entire time! As much as it is awesome for them to be helping out now however, I know things will be even harder for me AFTER the baby comes, so I'm hoping he's born sooner rather than later, so we get as much time with them post-baby as possible. Also the kids are just loving having them here, and every time they drive up all of them run outside and practically jump on them before they can even get out of the car. Evy is even going to them and playing with them and wasn't sad at all when I left for my appointment this morning and when they took her & Ben to the park without me. I'm glad that she's doing so well, it's great to see her happy to be with other people. Plus I was a little worried she'd just cry for me the entire time I was in the hospital, but thankfully it seems she will do just fine!

Hopefully my next post is full of new baby news...but I'm not counting on it!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

On Tuesday I had another appointment. It was super fast! I got called in after only sitting down for about 2 minutes! My belly measured 37cm, and I weighed between 149-150, which is the most I've ever weighed in my life. I was the same last week, so maybe I'm in the "slowing down of weight gain because delivery is getting close" phase. I'm dilated to 2.5cm and 50% effaced. That seems like a lot. Hopefully he doesn't just fall out. I hope this keeps going though, because I'm very happy with the idea of most of the dilating happening before things get painful.

I talked to my brother-in-law last week about the GBS stuff. At first I was irritated at my doctor, then I read the CDC and March of Dimes websites, and completely freaked out. He was very helpful though, and made me feel a lot better. If my water breaks, I have to go in right away, no matter what. And I will need to get IV injections of antibiotics, but it's just single injections, not the whole IV pole and everything, so hopefully I'll still be able to do something other than lay in a hospital bed and wait and think about how painful everything is. He said that I'll need to have the antibiotics at least 4 hours before delivery--as long as there's 4 hours you're essentially considered GBS negative. I'm not really sure how to plan that, but I guess we'll figure it out. If we don't get there in time, we'll have to stay in the hospital 48 hours after baby is born, and they'll do a few blood draws to make sure there are no issues. And I might end up getting an epidural, and it will be OK. I'm still going to try my patented "Distraction With an Awesome Book" method, but I think it will be SO much harder in the hospital, where I'll be all scared & anxious, and Scott will be bored, and I will be sitting in a bed. Maybe I can have a room with a chair & table to sit at instead? And maybe I can get away with not wearing a gown? My brother-in-law also really didn't like my original plan of getting to the hospital RIGHT before the baby was born (like what happened with Evy) because he's seen too many babies born in the car on the way to the hospital or out in the parking lot.

My inlaws are flying in this evening, so this guy is now officially allowed to be born at any time. My actual due date is the 14th, even though by my period it's the 6th and by the "big" 20 week ultrasound it was the 9th. The 14th date came from the very early ultrasound I had at about 8 weeks, and we go with that because the earlier ones are most accurate, since there is less variation in growth rate and stuff at that time.

My doctor said that at my next appointment she'd talk about scheduling me to be induced, and it was hard for me to get a few words in that I don't want to be induced. So the very latest she'll let me go is the 28th (2 weeks after due date). And starting next Friday (one day after due date) I'll go in twice a week for ultrasounds to check the amniotic fluid level and monitoring to make sure baby is still healthy. But she said she REALLY doesn't think I'll be late with this one.

I've been trying to clean stuff this week, although my house is still incredibly messy, and I just can't seem to get any dishes to go away, no matter how much time I spend washing them. Which is pretty hilarious, because I have to bend over and reach way far out because our counter is kinda high and the faucet doesn't go out very far, and my big belly makes it hard to reach! But I cleaned the bathroom, our room, and the breakfast nook/kids playroom. I'm working on the dining room a little today, but I'm resigned to the fact that I just can't get everything done before my inlaws come and/or before the baby comes. And since I can't commission Scott on account of the fact that he doesn't have any days off, this is as good as it will get. And that's OK too.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Gratitude



So. Things have been hard for me this pregnancy. It has definitely been the hardest of the four. Eating things is still hard, and my ankles are super swollen every night, and I have crazy nasty varicose veins, and I've been getting these wicked leg cramps, that hit all of a sudden like sciatica, but then turn into super painful cramps, but in my upper legs instead of my calves. I had one while I was driving the other day, and it was SCARY. And Scott is never home, and I get tired of parenting ALL day, all alone--hopefully that doesn't make me sound like a terrible parent. And the last week was in the 90s and 100s, and it's not fair. And I've been feeling like bursting into tears at random things, which I blame on crazy pregnancy hormones. Anyway, I've been complaining a lot. Not so much to the world, or even Scott, since he's never around to hear it. Plus I try to not complain about things to people too much, because people don't like that, and focusing on the bad stuff in your life makes the bad stuff worse. But I've been complaining in my head way too much. The other day I was talking to Scott, and realizing how lucky I am to be pregnant and uncomfortable. Many people, including some that I know, will never have that, and would be SO excited for the chance to be miserable for ten months. Or they have to go through expensive, risky fertility treatments, and are lucky to have just one kid. And, even more personally to me, and THIS pregnancy, I am very lucky to be pregnant. I was thinking about how I felt that day when I got the positive pregnancy test after two weeks of bleeding, and then saw a doctor who told me there was essentially no chance that this baby would live. That I was miscarrying; there was a baby in there who was dying or already dead. Those terrible feelings of grief and powerlessness. And then waiting FOREVER for a follow-up ultrasound, and barely allowing ourselves to hope when we saw that the baby was STILL THERE. So, I have nothing to complain about, and I have everything to be grateful for. Somehow, through some miracle, this baby survived. And despite the fact that I'm pretty sure he's in there yanking on the umbilical cord all the time and that's what's making this huge weird pain above my belly button, it's all worth it, and all OK, and all good. This is the original blog post I did when we first found out I was pregnant, and in the same exact instant, possibly miscarrying:


February 12 2010
Waiting...
(This entire post is probably TMI, I mostly just want to remember what's going on for my own sake. So feel free to skip or skim)

So. Pretty much every month Scott and I convince ourselves we're pregnant. If I mix up a word (like saying "sword" when I mean "saw") or feel the tiniest bit nauseous or crave anything or whatever, we always say "It's because I'm pregnant!" It's almost like a joke. Anyway, this happened this month, like usual. Then I was two days late (which isn't all that abnormal since Evy was born) and then I opened a box of Goldfish for Ben and the smell made me super sick. So we decided to wait a few more days, then do a test. The next day my "period" started, so we laughed at ourselves like usual. That was January 30th, and I'm still bleeding, 14 days later. I started thinking a few days ago that something wasn't right. Then yesterday I woke up and had very typical (for me) morning sickness: feeling slightly nauseous and NOT hungry all day. I just lay in bed with ben & evy for most of the morning, then decided to do a pregnancy test. It was positive.

Now, I needed to see a doctor. So I spent the next 2 hours on the phone with Kaiser and our new insurance company, trying to find some way for me to see my old doctor. Not possible through our insurance, so I decided I'd just buy an individual Kaiser plan just for me, and everyone else could stay on Scott's. I was on hold for 6 years. Finally I talk to the lady, and she asks if I'm pregnant. So I say "yes..." If I were 27 weeks or more Scott's insurance would pay Kaiser to continue my care. Otherwise, there is NO WAY that Kaiser will let me buy an individual policy. I could just go, and pay full price, out-of pocket for everything. I know that Evy's 15 minute well-baby exam cost $255, so there's no telling what an OB exam and ultrasound and bloodwork would cost. So I called Scott and cried and was really angry. Then he recommended that I call some friends and ask who they use and see if those doctors are covered. My sister-in-law doesn't love her doctor, (and that doctor wasn't covered anyway) and my friend Katie didn't answer. So, I pulled up the list of 200 doctors, and randomly chose one close to Good Sam, because that's my favorite not-Kaiser hospital. I called them and they were really worried, and squoze me in at 1:00. So Scott picked Will up from school, and I left as soon as he came home.

I think that if I hadn't already been all worried and mad at insurance and bitter at having to go to this place it wouldn't have been so bad, but it was. The front desk girl was in like jeans and a sweater, barely looked at me, and wasn't at all friendly. They had an old-timey move-the-weights- scale. They didn't take my temperature, and used a manual blood-pressure dealie. Anyway the doctor came in, looked at the pregnancy test they just did, and said, "wow, that's a really strong positive." The she did an internal ultrasound, and said the sac looked strange, measured about 5 weeks, and that she couldn't see the ovaries too well. She didn't do an external ultrasound. Again, I'm comparing, and being all negative, but when I was 8 weeks pregnant with Evy I had a small amount of bleeding, and they sent me to the ultrasound specialist, who did like a 20 minute, extensive ultrasound, and got good, clear pictures of both ovaries and all over my uterus and cervix. I kinda expected this doctor to do something similar.

Then the doctor told me that she thought I was either having a miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy. She was really surprised that I wasn't having any abdominal pain or super-heavy bleeding. When I asked, she said that there was a less than 30% chance that this would be a viable pregnancy, or maybe actually less than 10%. Whatever that means.

So she had me go to the lab to check my hCG levels and to check if I was anemic. I also noticed on the form that she was checking my Rh group. I know that I am Rh negative and Scott is Rh positive, and that I've gotten Rhogam with all three previous pregnancies, but she didn't ask me. And she didn't tell me what she was testing for, even when I asked if she was testing my hCG levels. She said, "yes, and some other things." I'm not a doctor, but I've done this 3 times, and have a slightly-higher than average knowledge of bloodwork due to being a vet tech. Anyway, it was just one of the little things that bothered me. She told me that this wasn't my fault, it was just something that, if we choose to have babies, we have to learn to accept and live with. Thanks. Makes me feel lots better. I'll just go and deal with it now.

The receptionist setting up my recheck appt next week was, I guess, uncomfortable with the fact that I was sniffling and trying not to burst into tears right there in the waiting room. But she could have offered me a tissue or something.

Then I went to the lab, which was just down the hall. There were two workers sitting at the desk, looking at a computer. They didn't look at me. They were talking about the weird names Anjolina Jolie picked for her kids. And couldn't pronounce Shiloh or Vivienne. Then, across the hall I could see another worker trying to draw blood on an old man, and she was calling to the other people to help her because she couldn't get it. But they were on their lunch. Really? You're allowed to be rude in front of and ignore customers and read about Anjolina Jolie at the front desk on your lunch? So that took forever. And gave me a lot of confidence. Then, when the guy was finally drawing my blood, he was like, "so are you getting out of work right now?" and I said no. and he asked "do you work" and i said "no" and said, "oh you're rich huh?" no. idiot.

So all day yesterday I was super morning-sickness-y, and a little feverish and weak and just yucky feeling. I laid on the couch all day and Scott stayed home. I feel like I have more questions now than I did before I went to the doctor. I assume that this will be a miscarriage. Even though I didn't even find out I was pregnant until after we suspected there was a problem, it still is painful. I feel a little better today, but I still feel all weak and sick. Part of me feels like I should just suck it up. I mean, most of the people I know who have kids have had miscarriages, and most of them WAY later than this, after they've seen & heard their babies. And I assume that this is happening because there's something wrong with the baby, and my body knew that. And we weren't planning on getting pregnant again yet (not that it'd be bad if we did, it's just that, at least we haven't been trying for a long time and having that extra disappointment). But, I'm still going to wallow for a little while. Because I think that's allowed. I wish I could have my own doctor, who cares about me. Not that the other lady was uncaring, just that my own doctor who knows me and has been with me since the crazy night Will was born actively CARES about me. And that lab was gross and lame, and I don't want to have to go back there.

Another thing that's worrying me is that, while I was just barely pregnant, Scott and I moved our entire house ourselves. The washer & dryer, CA king bed, the couches, the giant bookcase. I even said, twice, "I'm glad I'm not pregnant, because otherwise I wouldn't be able to help with all this. My "What to Expect When You're Expecting" book (which has been WAY more helpful than the doctor I saw) says that "moving light furniture" won't cause a miscarriage. What about a washing machine? times like 30? Almost every day for the first 3 weeks of your pregnancy?

I really don't know what's going to happen next. I could have a miscarriage anywhere in the next 4 weeks. I might need a D & C. I might have an ectopic pregnancy explosion like my friend Hilary. Or I might have a baby in 8 months.


So see? Life is good. I have a baby squirming around who, as far as we know, is super healthy and growing perfectly and who I will be able to hold and nurse and smell and cuddle in, at the VERY latest, three weeks. And I'm VERY grateful for that.