Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 and the 00's in Review

Well here we sit at the end of the year. I was looking back at the posts from the beginning of the year looking for that "Here's what I'm going to do this year post".

So let's see. I said I was going to learn photoshop. Done and Done. I find the program very useful and have gotten pretty good at taking good pictures and just touching them up to give them that bit of pizzaz and also using it to fix pictures that are totally screwed up due to bad exposure settings or what not.

My Dad, Jason and I had all planned on reading "I'm a Strange Loop". Didn't so much happen. But we can put that on the burner for this year.

Go to the YMCA ALL THE TIME! Yeah...seriously went like 5 times.

Travel to Zurich. Done and Done.

No where in that post did we talk about the the "Let's Try and Make a Baby" plan. Turns out that is what 2009 ended up being and go figure we made a pretty awesome little girl. The whole year ended up being somewhat consumed by preparing for her arrival. In the "Here's what I'm going to do this year post" I say, "Our little family unit is 180 from where we were last year" and I think I can safely say that again this year. This time last year Jason and I found ourselves seated at Sheffields most evenings for delicious beers and bbq, or out with work crowds downtown. Now we just find ourselves staring at the little one and wondering what the hell she is thinking and looking at and learning and it's just amazing!

And what will become of 2010? Who the hell knows but I can only hope that it's as exciting as the last few years have been. I like the being 180 from where I was the year keep going 180 don't you just end up back where you started two years previous? Wait...what the what? Anyways.

2009 is also the end of quite a decade. I was talking to Jason and I was, at the end of the last decade I was 20. I I can do math right? But seriously I was at a New Years Eve party in Chicago with friends from Indiana.

I was still an undergrad and only in my junior year of a physics degree. 10 years later and I have a PhD in the subject and had a ton of fun getting it. We got to work at the biggest lab on the planet at the time and I measured something more precisely than anyone else had (and it still stands as far as I know).

Jason and I weren't even dating 10 years ago. We were very good friends, but didn't start dating until May of that's so weird to think about. Now we are married and have this wonderful little person that is half of each of us.

During the decade we never really had any money but didn't let it stop us from traveling to Europe and the Caribbean and living in Chicago even though we were working out in Bativia. Of course if we hadn't done those things we probably wouldn't have been quite as poor...but I would never ever give up those days. We laugh now at the shithole apartments we lived in because we didn't have a choice, but I mean really the Iowa Street apartment? What the fuck were we thinking?

We grew up in the 00's. We dated, we broke up, we dated, we got married and along the way became even closer friends than I could have imagined. How many people marry their best friend? I mean really! I am so lucky. And little Lucy? Well she's going to grow up with two wacky ass parents. We of course aren't finding ourselves at Sheffields every night for beer and bbq, but we are still planning on a trip to Europe this coming year and because we can we are planning on Little Miss Lucy coming with us. Just because you have a baby doesn't mean that *everything* has to change. Of long as Miss Lucy is under the age of two her seat on the flight is that might have something to do with it.

And so we close out the decade miles and miles from where we entered it. I'm thinking the 10's are going to be just as amazing.

Monday, December 28, 2009

And So We Start

Jason just left for work after being off for about 3 weeks. He's back to work full time although this week he gets Friday off for New Years Day so at least he's going back to a short week. I have mentioned how much I hate that we don't work together any more and so I'm not going to mention it again...except that I just did. Damn. Ok well I miss him and this will be a tough transition to make.  I think a lot more difficult than when he started working separate from me in the first place. Ok that's it. Going to stop talking about it now.

And it being winter and gross out I have no plans although I have to get out of this apartment today as I've been inside for the last two days. My Dad is coming by late morning and I think we are going to take Lucy to Bernies which should be a nice walk. And then we can put her first steps in to a bar at less than 3 weeks. Which is nice and classy I think. Hopefully it's not too too cold out, we'll see. So far not a big fan of having a winter baby.

Lucy continues to be a great kid and is sleeping in her own room and waking up one time during the night to eat. She goes down for bed around 9:30-10 and gets up around 2:30-3 and then wakes up between 6 and 7. It could totally be a lot worse and so I'm happy we have such a good sleeper. What's awesome is that after she wakes up in the middle of the night she goes right back to sleep as if she knows it's 3 in the morning and not time to be up and on it.

We are not even talking about the Colts in this household, but we are hoping that the Bears can pull of a win tonight. Favre is old and it's cold in Chicago so you never know. Miracles can happen.

No pictures of Lucy today but my Uncle recently scanned this one in of me at about 3 I think.

Ok...well just a few pictures of Lucy:

She does this often with her right hand, right up by her ear like that

When she gets these eyes we know it's going to take some work to get her to sleep

Her eyes are still blue. I've done the genetic tables (yes. It's the only part of freshman biology that I was good at) and she has a small shot at getting blue eyes because Jason and I both have grandparents with blue eyes....maybe it's like a 1/16 chance. I did find out that her Great Grandmother Lucille who she was named after had blue we'll see

Thursday, December 24, 2009

First Time Parent Syndrome, Christas Eve, Jason Back to Work and Pictures!

So ok. Lucy had some congestion. I mean the child was racked with pain with said stuffy nose. How am I supposed to know that IT'S JUST A STUFFY NOSE. Sigh.

Yesterday Jason and I were convinced that the stuffy nose was something more than a stuffy nose. We realized we had a shitty thermometer as it was giving us readings that varied by over a degree in a 10 second span. So we called the doctor who said, stuffyness was very common in newborns to which I yelled, "THE CHILD IS SCREAMING. IT'S MORE THAN JUST A STUFFY NOSE." So they told us to bring her in and we did. And then of course Lucy just sat there and cooed and was cute and yes had some congestion. The doctor we saw was pretty funny. He's an older guy and I think he said he had 6 or 7 kids and so yeah. He said...ah first parent syndrome, usually I don't see that until at least week four. I told him that's probably true but I'm clearly neurotic. He said, well I can see that.

So yeah, Lucy is fine. And we are going to try and calm down a little bit. We've been trying to keep her on a pretty strict sleeping/eating schedule and so we are going to back off that a little bit just because she seems to do better when we let her dictate what she wants to do. She's already sleeping 5-6 hours at night and actually last night went 6 hours between feedings which is awesome. My parents told me that I was sleeping through the night at about 2 weeks so hopefully this kid is following that same plan. It's horribly frustrating though becasue all the books are like, newborns have to eat every 2-3 hours so you have to wake them up. Lucy is probably the hardest sleeper that I have ever seen and it's really hard to wake her up so I hate doing it. Plus she's not exactly the size of a newborn. So short we are figuring it out day by day and probably making tons of mistakes along the way. But like the doctor said, she'll let us know when she's hungry and uncomfortable and so maybe we should try listening to her instead of books....or probably more accurately a little bit of both.

Our little niece who is just 5 days older than Lucy is having a hard time these days. She caught a respiratory virus and is in the hospital hooked up to all kinds of tubing. Jason and I cannot even imagine what his brother and wife are going through and hope that she turns the corner soon.

I was planning on making a big Christmas Eve dinner and then I thought...wait...we live by lots of restaurants that deliver. So we are ordering a nice Christmas pizza. But I'm baking cookies today so we got that going for us.

Today was Jason's first day back at work. If he takes Christmas Eve off he has to take a full vacation day but if he goes into work he only has to work a 1/2 day so he went in for the morning today. He goes back full time on Monday. After him being home for the last almost 3 weeks it's really hard for me to see him go back to work. I miss working with him and seeing him all the time and him just being home reminded me of those times when we would see each other all the time and work together and I fucking miss it. Not many people get to be in love with their best friend and have gotten years to work with them. We'll get back into a rhythm soon enough I know. Although we'll have a new rhythm that involves the baby. But anyways. It's tough to see him leave for work and I'm sad. Good thing we all get presents tomorrow. Presents makes everything better.

And as usual because everyone just likes pictures, here we go:

I don't quite fit yet! But when I do this looks like it'll be a rockin' good time. Thanks all grandparents!

Those are my toes! And I kind have the fat man boobs and belly....but I'm loving my first bath!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Strange, Wonderful, Perfect and then Overtired

Being a new parent of course is very strange but it's helping that Little Lu is apparently the perfect child. She doesn't really cry, she eats, sleeps, looks around a little bit and then goes back to sleep. I know she's looking at Jason and I and thinking, "Oh great, I got a bunch of rookies. Just put the fucking tshirt on already, this shouldn't take you 5 minutes. Can't you see I'm pretty much naked? LET'S GO ROOKIES, GET YOUR HEAD IN THE GAME"

Jason and I have settled into parenthood like champs although it helps having the support staff of the Gods. My Mom has been staying with us and cooking meals for us and cleaning up which is so awesome. She thought that it would be the crazy house with the baby and would have to help more with her, but since Lu is so perfect and Jason and I have a lot of that under control there hasn't been much to help with there. If she wasn't here would be D'Augs or Penny's Noodles every night and our living room would be covered with baby blankets, diapers, pacifiers, pillows and god knows what other treasures we would find there. So that has been such a huge help. My Dad and Sue of course are here all the time and my Dad has been able to run some errands for us when we need stuff and so on. I don't know how calm we would be without the three of them around.

So all was perfect and Lu slept and she ate and she slept and she looked around quietly. Then last night we did our tree decorating and my Mom made dinner and there was just a ton going on. Poor Lu couldn't quite get to sleep between two of her feedings and then the poor kid was so overtired that she was awake for many many hours. She was fussy and just could not close her eyes. Well she would, but then they would snap open like a baby doll and we would have to start trying to calm her down all over again. She stayed awake till her next feeding and then for a few more hours after that. Finally finally, she fell asleep on my chest. She did wake up an hour later to eat, but then we put her right back in the bassinette and she drifted right off for a nice 4 hour snooze. This morning she hung with Jason and I in our room after eating and is now back asleep. Before she went to sleep she was making some pretty spectacular faces which was fun to look at. She makes one face and she looks just like Yoda which of course Jason the Star Wars King loves.

Today Jean and her baby Ethan are coming to visit so that should be fun and then tomorrow we are having a Holiday Party/Come poke the baby open house deal so that should be fun....hopefully not too much stimulation :).

As far as me, I'm feeling great. I'm not going to be one of those people that is all talking about my weight and if I'm back to my pre pregnancy weight and yadda yadda. I know I'll get there soon enough but I will say that the weight was a whole lot of baby and fluids I think because I just have a little pooch left. I can start running again in like 4 weeks and I'm really looking forward to that. I'm going to coach my Dad and I think with me coming off of abdominal surgery he'll be able to go a lot farther than me, but he better get ready for the coach from hell that's going to come knocking on his door with the temps at 2 degrees. LET'S GO RUNNING!

And of course since no one really cares about all the of above and just wants to see pictures of the little one. Here you go. There will be lots and lots of pictures at this location which is updated daily if you are interested: Enjoy!



Tuesday, December 15, 2009

It's Baby Lucy!

So Leah's already recounted her epic experience from the perspective of the lady in the hospital gown, but I thought I'd chime in on the view from the sidelines.

Heading in to the hospital to get started with the induction was a pretty simple process. The admission process was easy and the early induction steps were a piece of cake as Leah was just strapped into an IV and the pitocin started dripping. No problem. Easy peasy. La di da. I just hung out over on the day bed and we watched TV together, too tired and excited to go to bed. The baby was almost here! Yay!

Sure, the nurses cautioned us that it could take 18-24 hours for induction to work its magic. Our first resident even warned that it could take as long as 48 hours, worst case.

Yeah, okay. Sure. I think we'll be fine, thanks.

And so the pitocin kept on dripping and we kept on hanging out. We tried to get a bit of sleep that night, but it wasn't really possible. Every half hour Leah's automatic blood pressure cuff would start pumping and wake us up. But no big deal if we didn't get sleep because, really, the baby would be here soon!

And then noon the next day started to roll around. Leah had been contracting for almost 14 hours and had nothing to show for it. A mere 1.5 centimeters and no pain. Boo to no pain! And so the doctor decided to break Leah's water and let nature's pitocin take over. Out doctor was pulled into a c-section and couldn't make it in for the water breaking, so a resident was sent in instead.

And then the breaking of the water began.

I don't think I'm exaggerating when I say it's the worst thing I've ever seen. The look of pain on Leah's face while the resident was on top of her, wielding her instrument of torture (which I swear to god was a meter long), was just horrifying. And all I could do was sit over on the sidelines and watch, doing nothing. In the end it worked, but it was distinctly not awesome. Afterwords, I remembered to breath again.


And I think I'm just about recovered from the trauma.


But, in the end, the water breaking was a good thing as the contraction began to really kick in. Yay for pain! On a scale from 1 to 10, I believe she said her pain was a fortheloveofgodstopaskingmethatgoddamnquestion. We spent the next little while walking the halls and dilating (well, she dilated more than I did. I'm still at 1 cm) and the pain kept on increasing. Leah was starting to get really uncomfortable and then the time came. Get me the drugs! And some for Leah, too! Druuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuugggggggggggggggggs.

And so she got the epidural. And it was delicious. I remember walking back into the room (they make the fathers leave during this procedure) and I did a double take. Leah was sitting there on the best smiling and joking with the nurses, back to her pre-pain self. I was starting to feel pretty good about this. And, as a bonus, she was up to 3 cm dilated. Woo Hoo! The baby was on the way!

And then it was a lot of hanging out and waiting. We watched Monday Night Football then slept for awhile. During that time, Leah passed 6.5 and 7 cm and the night was starting to really drag on. Leah covered this pretty well and there's not too much to day about this time. Leah needed her medicine re-dosed a bit, but once the pain was well under control, we both slept a decent amount. Actually, we slept a lot more that night than the night before (when the contractions were very mild), because the real issue with sleeping was an uncomfortable bed. (Note to all the ladies: get the epidural when you *enter* the hospital. Otherwise your butt will keep falling asleep on the very uncomfortable bed and no sleep will be had).

And so, in some regard, nothing interesting happened. Leah just grew more tired and frustrated with the process and time began to slow. But what I remember more is her waking me up and having me come over because she had started shaking violently. Leah broke down with tears of frustration and fear, the big fear being that she wouldn't have enough energy to push when the time came. Her body had nothing left. All she wanted was a drink of water. And still, shaking violently. And through it all, there wasn't a thing I could do. I couldn't give her water. I couldn't help the shaking. Nothing.

Very frustrating.

I could see things were starting to spiral out of control, so I was very relieved when our amazing doctor came in and had a talk with Leah. It was time to consider a c-section. Or, at least, a c-section was now a viable option. Leah had given it her all and, after 32 hours of labor, had started to lose it. The contractions had lost their zing and her body was out of baby-having juice.

It as time for a c-section. There was really no choice. The doctor, although she wouldn't tell us what to do, gave me the impression that she really felt surgery was the only realistic option at this point. At this point it really appealed to me as I wasn't wild about the direction this was heading and a c-section meant we got to meet little Lucy much sooner.

After a bit of deliberation and waiting a bit longer, the decision was made. Let's make the cut! Yay! It's slicin' time!

And so Leah was wheeled out of the room and I was left to get dressed in my sweet-ass scrubs. The nurse came to get me and took me over to the other waiting room, where I waited for them to get Leah all prepped up. After 5-10 minutes of waiting (or more, I have no idea), it was time to head into the operating room and have a baby, Julius Caesar style.

My job during the procedure was to keep Leah calm. I just kept letting her know that this was a very easy surgery and that, in the end, we would have a Lucy. She must have actually been quite tired as she actually nodded in agreement with me a few times. And through it all, we listened to a live episode of ER unfold. Our doctor was in complete command of the operating room, calmly directing the procedure and explaining each step of the way. The best part was that it was a teaching hospital, so the whole time a med student was getting quizzed and, I might add, getting some answers wrong. Tsk, tsk, tsk.

After a mere ten minutes, out doctor announced that she was making the incision on the uterus and that there would be some pressure (I'd imagine so as she was wrist-watch deep in Leah's insides) and, 1 minute later...a baby cry. I was told I could stand up and see the baby (I think that's what I was told, anyway, as I certainly stood up) and saw little Lucille held above Leah's belly, crying her little (well, "little") head off. Yep, that's what I'd been waiting for.

After that it was a bit of a whirlwind. She was brought over for me to hold along side Leah and then off to be warmed and cleaned. I was allowed to head over to the "giraffe" and watch her get all weighed and whatnot. I really couldn't believe how big she was. To me, she looked like a toddler. It was unreal. The nurse asked what I thought of the size and I threw out a guess of 10 lb 5 oz and, as it turns out, I wasn't off by much.

Yeah, I rule.

What I remember most was just that she was actually cute. I mean, let's be honest, most babies aren't when they first make an appearance in the world. Most are damn ugly. But ours came out full formed and ready to rule the world.

And so now here we are. At 9:12 today she turns a week old and she's already a completely different baby. We've started looking at colleges already (SAT flash cards are a great investment!) and it's pretty clear to me her #1 choice is IU. Go Hoosiers!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

She's Here! And She's Spectacular!

As I get back to feeling to my normal self...still quite a ways off but each day gets better I can't believe that the little thing sitting next to me used to be inside of me. So here we go with how she got from in there to out here.  Get some coffee as it's not a short post for obvious reasons :)

On Sunday night we went to the hospital to start the induction process. It's a slow process and so they start at night. So went in and got all hooked up and the pitocin started started pumping.

And it pumped.
And pumped.
Then it pumped some more.

Then it was 12 hours later and although I was having contractions I didn't feel *anything* and I wasn't any farther along that I had been 12 hours earlier. Still only 1.5cm dilated and 50% effaced. They decided to take a break and let me eat some lunch and totally disconnected me from most of the machines so I could walk around more freely.

At 12pm on Monday afternoon they started again and at about 1:30pm they broke my water manually. When they were done with what I can only describe as hell on earth I looked over at Jason and the poor guy was literally as white as a ghost. I was worried because I had never seen him look like that. He told me that it was the most horrible thing he had ever seen and I told him that I thought childbirth was going to be even worse.

After they broke the water, things finally started moving. A few hours later I was 3cm dilated and 70% effaced. I started feeling the contractions. And then holy hell did I start feeling them. I had never planned on doing anything naturally as I don't really feel the need to feel the joys of childbirth and so I got an epidural. I'm not kidding it was the best thing in the world. I could have hugged that anesthesiologist and when Jason got back in the room he was like holy shit you are like light and day. I felt so much better, not only with the contractions but also with the bed. I had been so uncomfortable in the hospital bed and so being able to sit on it or lay on my side without there being instant pain in my butt and side was awesome. So I was finally able to get some sleep.

The nurse at this point was awesome and we discussed a mutual love of candy. She was then able to get me a grape popsicle which I swear has never tasted better.

At about 11:30pm I was 6.5cm dilated and 80% effaced. Things had sped up and so we thought that I might be doing some delivering around 2 or 3am. So we went to sleep. The contractions started to get worse and so we upped the epidural amount but we were on our way!

At about 4am they checked again and uh oh....I was only 7cm dilated, although 90% effaced and -1 station. Things were slowing down.

At 6:30am they checked again, and I was at 8cm dilated, 90% effaced and +1 station. So Ok. I was making progress but it had sloooooowed way down as this was 7 hours after being 6.5 cm dilated. So then I totally freaked out. I mean I was hysterical, my blood pressure rocketed and I couldn't catch my breath. The nurse got my doctor and I told her how tired I was and did she think I was ever going to get to 10cm. She said she couldn't tell me for sure but if I was done we could do a c-section and call it stalled labor. She left and Jason and I talked and I called my parents and I was just so exhausted. At this point I had been in labor for 32 hours. The first 12 might have been "easy" but my body was still contracting and I hadn't slept hardly at all.

I told the doctor to check again in an hour. At that point I was exactly the same and I was done. There was no way that even if I made it to the pushing part would I have had enough energy to push for the amount of time it was going to take to get her out. I had gotten close, but in this game close doesn't cut it.

So we told her that were ready for the c-section and to just get it done. From that point they stopped the pitocin to get it out of my system and who knows, maybe my body would have kicked it into gear. They checked back with me at about 8am, I had still made no progress and so we were a go for surgery.

I was so scared. I have never been in a hospital let alone had surgery done.

I was shaking so hard when they took me to the room. The anesthesiologist was great and he kept me pretty calm telling me what was happening for all the things they were doing. When we got the room I was already totally numb and so they were like you move a little to get over to the surgery bed. And I was like sure. Then I didn't move anywhere, so I was like. umm...maybe not.

They got me moved over to the surgery bed, and started doing the prep work. And I was shaking a lot. And it was pretty fucking scary. But then they finished up that and suddenly Jason was in the room and things got started. We kind of felt like we were on a episode of ER because there was a med student in the room and they kept asking questions and going what is that or what would you do here. And I kept wondering what they were doing as I bet it would have been fascinating to see what was going on. Gross but pretty cool.

It didn't take long before they said, ok you are going to feel a lot of pressure here. And I did. And then a baby started crying. And the doctor said, "I'd say Little Lucy is here but she's not very little!" I started crying because I could hear her crying and I could hear everyone talking about her. Another doctor in my practice said, "You look just like your mom!".

Soon they told Jason they could come over to see her and told him to guess the weight. I couldn't hear what he said, and then they said, nope 9-6. And I said, "9-6?" and they said no....10-6! I laughed and said to myself, "Well I win!" Gotta love having the biggest baby among friends who all have big babies. Eventually Jason brought her over to me and I couldn't believe that she was finally here. She was wonderfully wonderful :).

From there we rolled into a recovery room where they tested their blood sugar. I tried to breast feed and while it didn't work it was nice for her to get a chance to know my skin. They said if her blood sugar was under 40 she would have to go straight to the NICU, if it was 40-55 we would want to give her a bottle of formula to pump it up, and if it was over 55 we were good to go. The nurse tested and it was 35. I was thinking, "Oh no!!! She just got here don't take her from me." The nurse said when it's under 40 they do two tests and she just had to get another nurse. This nurse tested it and she measured 42. So we did the formula and after a 3rd test her blood sugar was up in the 80s. Before we went to our room there was one more test and her blood sugar was 56, so right above the cutoff. The NICU said it was fine for her to be with us but we would be testing her blood sugar ever 3 hours for the next 24 hours.

From there they wheeled us upstairs, and she was with us. More stories from the hospital to come. But Miss Lucille Jean is here, she's wonderful and she's made Jason and I so flipping happy.

There will be lots of pictures of her at my smugmug account. This gallery will have all of her hospital pictures in it. Enjoy!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Sunday, December 06, 2009

We're going to the hospital and we're not leaving until they give us a baby

Alright, about an hour until we head to the hospital for what ended up being a very planned birth. At 10:30 we will check in to Prentice Day Spa and Baby Center. Sometime tonight they'll start pushing the pitocin and then sometime in the next 24 hours a baby will pop out.




Or something like that.

For the last nine plus months, we've really been pretty much focused on getting the baby out of Leah's uterus happy and healthy. We haven't done a ton to deal with the baby when she comes out and becomes our responsibility. I mean, sure, we've bought all the stuff we need and prepared a very lovely room for her to sleep and poop in, but we haven't done a ton to ready ourselves for raising a real, live human.

How do we raise a young lady who's adventurous, clever, interesting, freethinking, active, fun, happy, healthy...basically, how do you not screw up a kid? I dunno. I guess we'll just have to do our best. For now, however, the bigger question is: how do we change a diaper. Or feed a baby. Or...any of that crap. You can bet we'll be leaning pretty heavily on the nurses over the next couple of days. I envision a lot of:

Nurse: I'm not sure if you noticed, but your baby's crying.

Me: I'm sorry, what now?

Nurse: You might want to change the diaper.

Me: Diaper?

Nurse: Diaper.

Me: Diaper?

Nurse: *sigh*

But luckily babies give you lots of practice with the feeding and diaper changing early on, so expertise is pretty much guaranteed after a few weeks (yay?). And the whole raising a decent human thing? I guess we'll just have to figure that out as we go along.

Like Marathon Training?

So today is the big day and I was a little bit (ok a lot bit) anxious last night. It was almost the same feeling I have as before a big race. So it got me questioning how similar this pregnancy was to a summer filled with marathon training.

I always thought that the two things would be very similar. You train your body to go through something horrible and wonderful at the same time. With racing you run speed workouts, you run long runs, you run some races for practice. When race day comes you are prepared to toe the line even if you are nervous because all the work you had done for 6 months has you ready.

With this pregnancy I would have to say I feel like I'm toeing the line for a marathon without having done one single run. Aside from the fact that you can't really prepare for the first time you are going through childbirth, but it's more than that. This pregnancy has been maybe not the most fun thing (really....I weigh what?) and holy hell do I miss running and jeans that can button, but in general it's been super freakin' easy. I have zero, yeah you ready that right, swelling in my hands and feet. Well maybe not zero as my wedding rings became a bit uncomfortable, but very very slight. I can still walk around with the best of them, I wake up to go to the bathroom only about once a night and I'm easily sleeping 8-9 hours per night.

I have talked to other people that are 41 weeks pregnant or at least at the end of their pregnancy and they are so uncomfortable and have had enough pre labor signs that they might be more prepared for labor than someone like me who hasn't.

Add to the fact that if this was a race, when you cross the finish line they hand you something that is literally going to change you life for. ever. I mean not that I didn't know this going in. But it's not just getting through a race. It's starting a new kind of race.

I keep saying, "Oh this is the last time this apartment is going to be so quiet." or "This is the last time we are going to be able to go do this or that". What I have to start doing is thinking about all the firsts that we are going to get to do and how exciting that is going to be. I have a giant fear that Jason and I are going to lose who we are in this process and our relationship will change. And we probably will change, but it doesn't mean we aren't going to change for the better. We have to still make time for each other otherwise we will become what we despise. The people that talk about their loved ones with a hint of annoyance. Or talk about parenting like it's a chore. Jason and I are so excited to be parents and drag that little one all over this city doing fun things. We don't really lead a very glamorous lifestyle and most of the things we like to do will be more fun with a kid in tow anyways. Zoo lights? The beach? Gay Pride Parade? Anything else happening in the city? Hell. To. The. Yeah.

And so like marathon training? Not for me anyways. Marathon racing perhaps. But at the end of this race, instead of JUST being sore and tired, we will meet a Little Lucille Jean. And I'll be a Mom. Wait...who the hell let me be a Mom? WHERE ARE THE ADULTS?

<14 hours.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Less than 36 hours

Well these posts aren't too exciting as Lucy can't seem to get her head in the game and figure out how to come here all on her own. I am being induced tomorrow night at 10:30pm unless something happens between now and then that makes the baby come out. I am doubting that and so we are just counting down till tomorrow so that if she comes early it'll be like a fun little surprise.

Yesterday we had an appointment just to make sure it was ok to wait until Sunday night for the induction and everything looks great. The tech at my doctors appointment was wonderful and said that the baby looked perfect and although she's going to be a big baby she looks great. The doctor also calmed me down giving me some recent weights of babies they have delivered recently. Not that I could do anything about it anyways and we say the bigger she is the more of her there is to love. That's what I'm telling myself anyways, although I don't know if my vagina is in agreement with me.

I had another internal exam and the doctor said that I'm now maybe 1.5cm dialated. I wanted to tell her that she doesn't need to grasp at straws to make me feel better :). Also I'm about 50% effaced and I hadn't been anything effaced previously so I guess she's moving down a bit. When I got home I'm pretty sure...and here is where I'm questioning how detailed I want to get on this blog but what the hell...that the bloody show they talk about happened which was gross and scary. But I totally thought that it was a sign that labor was starting right then. I called the doctor and she said that it was probably due to the exam that got that stuff started. So yeah. I got that going for me. Just no labor.

We think that the baby is going to have to be ok with cat fur as everything in our apartment has at least one cat hair on it. Dagny the Wonder Cat has taken to sleeping on the changing table and inside the little bouncer that we got. She's going to be in for quite the shock next week I think. Anyone else out there with cats and new babies?

Everything in the apartment is ready. The bags are ready although I'm guessing since I have no idea what to expect I'm not going to have anything that I really need. What did you bring to the hospital? What did you find that you wish you had or that you had that made your time in the hospital that much easier?

I'm going to try and get some sleep today and tonight and tomorrow given that I'm going to be up for many hours starting Sunday night so I'm going to store up some time, although I know that's not really possible. So napping and football today and napping and football tomorrow. Good thing the Bears are so boring this year as they are super easy to nap to.

So that is all. Just waiting and waiting and waiting.....

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Two Knitting Projects

Over the summer I took two knitting classes. One to learn how to make a lacy ishbel scarf thingy and then one to learn how to do fair isle colorwork stuff. For the later my friend Jean and I took a class to make a Christmas stocking. The big plan was to make one for Lucy, Jason and myself but things got put down and so only Lucy will get one this year.

Here are some pictures of the Ishbel:

And of the Stocking:

For more details about each project you can check me out on Ravelry if you are a member of that. My username is LeahC (shocking) :) ).

Mini Contractions(?), Dreams and Teddy Bears

Last night as I was sitting on the couch I was again hit with some lower abdomen pain type things. I looked in the pregnancy books I have and these could be a sign of early labor. So that's cool. I don't know why I only get them at one time of the day when sitting in one position but there they are. Jason kept his hand on my belly and said he thought it was getting harder as I would get uncomfortable. So who knows. As soon as I went to bed they stopped though, or I was just too tired to feel anything.

Last night I had two crazy ass dreams. The first was the baby was here but it was time to take her home from the hospital and I was worried it was too cold out. So I put her back in (yes. I know it's fucking weird) and then birthed her again when I got home. What the what? Seriously.

The other dream I had was that I went back to work the day after I gave birth. And after work I was like, wait what the fuck am I doing? How could I have not take the day after the birth off? How is the baby eating? I wanted to breast feed. So I went running back to the hospital and when I got there I was, yeah I'm back.

These dreams are not making me feel any more confident about my abilities to parent. At all.

Today my sister-in-law goes in for her scheduled c-section. I think it's at 11:30. I'm not going to lie, I'm a little jealous as I thought Lucy would be here first, but I can't wait to see pictures of that little one! It will always be fun I think for our kids to be almost the exact same age. Little Alice will always be able to do the, "I'm older than youuuuuuuuuu" routine. That'll work until they are about 30 and then Lucy can be all, "oooooh I'm still only 29!"

Jean and her son Ethan are coming over to visit this afternoon if Ethan is feeling up to it as he had his first round of shots yesterday afternoon and so might be a cranky baby and not feeling up to it. It'll be fun to have some company this afternoon so I'm looking forward to that.

Early doctor appointment tomorrow morning for another full round of tests to see how she's doing in there. Assuming all is fine and she's just clueless, we'll be enjoying one last weekend alone and then Sunday night we head in. Kinda scary. I'm wondering if I'm not any closer to labor Sunday night if I can just take the el downtown. I mean seriously what's the point of driving or taking a cab? The train won't be crowded at that time of night. Ok Ok, we'll get a ride. I'm just saying not much of a point I don't think.

Anyone know of any companies in Chicagoland that do teddy bear restoration? We went to this doll place on the north side but they only worked with dolls only and not plush animals and I'm sorry to say the woman working there was a little bitchy. She didn't even ask how old Charlie the Bear was! He's 50! Which I think is kind of impressive. Our plan right now if we can't find a teddy bear hospital is to take out the stuffing and handwash him and then restuff him and patch him up. So if you don't know any restoration places what would you stuff a teddy bear with? Any tips or suggestions would be appreciated.

So yep. Still pregnant. But I'm beating the shit out of Mario Galaxy so I got that going for me.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Thought Maybe. Then Not So Much.

Last night I was sitting on the couch and Lucy was doing her usual night time dance routine and all of a sudden I was all, "WHOA, ouch."

I was thinking this is it. This is labor. It's going to happen tonight. Yeah. No. Not so much labor I guess as her just moving around and hitting me in some bad places that caused a lot of pain. What the hell, how am I supposed to know what a contraction is.

So then I was all excited because I kept thinking that it would happen that night.  And again, not so much.

The biggest problem last night was that she would not stop moving, which is totally a good sign, but oh my god she was an animal in there. I couldn't get comfortable in bed, and laid awake for many hours wishing she would go to sleep so that I could as well. So. Not too good of a nights sleep and with me tossing and turning and Lucy beating on my stomach which has Jason's hand on it most night he didn't get much sleep either. I can take a nap of course but I feel really bad because he has a full day of work he has to get through.

It's looking like Jason is almost going to take the entire month of December off. His company gives a week of paid paternity leave (actually it's a week of paid leave for men and woman who have new babies, and then for women the short term disability kicks in) which is awesome and then he has a bunch of vacation saved up, so it's looking like he'll take the next eight days off as well. So this is his last week at work for awhile it's looking like.

Today I'm going with my Dad to take a 50 year old teddy bear named Charlie in for surgery. This is my Dad's teddy bear from when he was a kid and we all feel that Lucy should have it. However, Charlie is in critical shape and needs a lot of work and apparently Dad and Sue found a place that restores such things.

So it's Wednesday December 2nd. 5 days at the longest until we meet Lucy. 

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Progress Lacking but an End in Sight

Well. I'm not surprised but I'm no farther along than I was 2 weeks ago. Still only 1cm dilated and nothing else is happening down there. No softening, no head moving down anywhere, no effacing. I have literally had 0 contractions. I mean nothing. No braxton hicks, nothing.

So. Yeah.

But we have a plan now and it helps to have that at least in my head. We go back to the doctor on Friday for another ultrasound, NST& checkup as that will be my exact 41 week date. If all looks ok, in other words that don't need to induce right away the induction will start at 10:30pm Sunday night. I know I know, there are a lot of people out there that are against inducing, but Jason and I are not. The baby is already measuring very big and frankly I'm done with being pregnant and so I'm looking forward to it.

The time sounded weird to me at first, but now I'm happy with it. The doctor said they don't like to just pump me full of lots of pitocin and would rather try to have it take some time so that my body can maybe figure out what it's supposed to be doing with just a little nudge. My doctor will be at the hospital on Monday and so with me going in on Sunday night I'm pretty much guaranteed to have her there to deliver the baby which I'm happy about.

If the baby is born on Monday her birthday would be 12/7 and what's cool about that is Jason's birthday is 7/12 so we got that going for us. The non-cool part about that is that we have to wait till Monday. Not that it can't happen on it's own before then, but worst case is the plan laid out for us and we really trust and like our doctor and that's the most important thing.

I never went into this with a set plan of "This is how the birth of my child HAS to go". About 18 months ago I went through some pretty major panic attacks and through that experience learned that as soon as you think something HAS to go a certain way, you can end up panicking and being severely disappointed when it doesn't go that way. Then being upset that you are upset and it's this awesomely bad spiral of badness :). I'm not the best with going with the flow, but I'm getting better and the thing I did to make that better was to stop saying, I HAVE to do something only one way. One of the best things for me to do is to ask, ok, this is how I would like something to go, but what if it doesn't? Then what? Knowing that the other options or outcomes to a certain situation are laid out and aren't "bad" is extremely helpful to me.

Yes I had to go to a therapist to learn to stop saying I HAVE to do this. Those months a year and a half ago might not have been the most fun in our household and I would say that they might have been the worst of my life. But I would never take them back because I am a better and calmer person for it. This situation would have been out of control I think had I not had some internal tools to deal with situations. So Yay for panic attacks!

Jason took a personal day today in case something went bad and now that it's not we are going to run some errands and then decorate for Christmas tonight. We are going to get the tree after Lucy gets here I think which should be fun. It'll be all decorated for when my mom gets here on the 12th which is perfect.

And so I'm off. And who knows, maybe Lucy will get her head in the game and figure out that she's very uncomfortable and make a move to exit on her own. You never know.


Diagonal, originally uploaded by LeahC.