Thursday, October 30, 2008

24 Weeks! (and "growing pains")

Yesterday marked the beginning of my 24th week. Things with me are still largely the same; however, I do have a new symptom that's become bothersome. I have this nagging pain on my left side, about 4 inches below my breast. (Different from the rib pain I've been having) The pain is very localized. Sometimes my skin itches in this area, sometimes it gets a strange burning sensation, but it always aches. Last week there were a couple of times when it hurt just to lean over the sink to wash my face or brush my teeth, and it even hurt if I laughed or coughed. It felt like someone was stabbing me. Not fun! Anyway, I called Dr. S on Friday afternoon and she said I probably have a "hot spot." Apparently this is a growing pain that localizes in one consistent spot. She offered to see me on Monday to make sure everything was okay. I know she probably thinks I'm a total pest and a whiner. Oh well!! I saw Dr. S on Monday and she still thinks it's just a "growing pain." I've come to despise that term! She prodded around the area, but didn't feel anything suspicious. I have another ultrasound scheduled in a couple of weeks with the perinatologist to check Zoe's anatomy one more time. Dr. S is going to have that doc do an ultrasound of the area to make sure nothing is going on internally. Thankfully, the stabbing sensations are gone, but I still have general achiness, itching and burning in the region. Good times! My blood pressure during the visit was good - 116/68 and Zoe's heart beat was nice and strong - 140-150 bpm.

I'm up 1.6 lbs. from my pre-preggers weight, so I'm doing a good job with my weight gain. My appetite is starting to increase a bit, but it's still not out of control. If I could just shake this sweet tooth! I have one extreme craving right now....toasted whole wheat bagels w/ butter and grape jelly. I have one just about every morning. The cashier at the local bagel shop knows my order by heart now - "wheat bagel with butter and jelly, a banana and decaf coffee? Yep!"

Zoe this week: our little angel's brain is growing quickly now. I hope the Lord blesses her with ubber intelligence! :- ) Her taste buds are continuing to develop (yet another reason to kick my sugar habit), and her lungs are developing "branches" of the respiratory "tree". Her lungs are also producing surfactant, a substance that will help her air sacs inflate once she's born. Zoe's skin is still thin and translucent, and she's still a platinum blond since her hair still lacks pigment. Last, but not least, Zoe's cute little face is almost fully formed. I already know she's going to be gorgeous!

Zoe is growing steadily. Babies are said to gain approximately 6 ounces per week at this point. Zoe is approximately 1 1/2 lbs. and over a foot long (head to heel). She's about the size of an ear of corn:

Baked Gingerbread Loaves

I caught a glimpse of my feet a few minutes ago, and they look like baked loaves of bread. Since I'm of the brown persuasion, I decided they look like gingerbread loaves. Cute gingerbread loaves, but gingerbread loaves nonetheless. LOL. It's amazing how pregnancy makes one's extremities swell for no reason at all! My hands are fine, but there's something about my feet lately.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Amazing Husband!!!

My husband is so amazing!! I'm the luckiest girl this side of Heaven! I had my office door closed a few minutes ago because I was eating lunch. I hear a tap on my door and in walks my secretary with a huge bouquet of two dozen yellow roses (my favorite!). I open the card and it reads as follows:

"One for every week of Zoe's life...you are a wonderful wife and mother. I love you very much! Trevor"

My eyes instantly welled up with tears. I couldn't even read the card to my secretary for fear of completely breaking down....I had to let her read it.

Aw... I love my "baby daddy" so much!!! :- ) He is so amazing!!!

Thanks, my love!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Crib Bedding - Check!

We finally decided on Zoe's crib bedding. What a relief! Now we have to start thinking about general room decor, but that shouldn't be as difficult. I hope.

And the winner is....."Raspberry Truffle":

Just Because

Dear Zoe,

There's no special reason for this post. I just wanted to tell you how much I love you already. I've been feeling you move a lot more lately, and I just love the feeling of your little thumps. It's almost as if you're reminding me that you're in there, but I know you're really just stretching, repositioning yourself and/or playing with the umbilical cord. ;- ) I also know that your light thumps will soon become forceful kicks and punches, but I'll do my best to enjoy those too. Even when they hurt.

I can't wait to hold you and play with you, sweetness. I daydream about your toothless grins and the little cooing sounds you'll make. I can't wait to hear you giggle for the first time. I'm even dreaming of your first cry. I can't wait to snuggle with you morning, noon and night, and I can't wait to feel your breath against my skin. I just can't wait for YOU!

Daddy and I are going to do everything in our power to be the best parents we can be. We know the Lord will grace us through it day-by-day, and He'll give us what we need to be great parents to you.

I love you, Zoe!

Anxiously anticipating your arrival,
Mommy

Thursday, October 23, 2008

She Loves the Spa!

I went to the spa last Saturday for my monthly facial. Zoe was kicking like crazy! She probably smelled the eucalyptus. I think she loves the spa already! Like mother, like daughter. (I refuse to believe she hated the experience ~ smile) I can't wait until she's old enough for mom/daughter spa days. There will be plenty of those in our future (although it will be awhile before that time comes).

23 Weeks! (plus the big reveal)

Yesterday started my 23rd week. Not much is new with me. My aches and pains are the same---round ligament pain and that pesky pain in my left rib cage and on the left side of my back. I'm still working on my posture, which helps. I've also developed a nightly routine of soaking in a hot, but not too hot, tub. Ahhh!!! My feet are still swelling occasionally. I put on a pair of boots this morning and they were a bit snug. I thought it may have been because I haven't worn them in awhile. I still wore them, figuring they'd stretch during the day. When I mentioned it to Trevor on my drive to work, he said he noticed that my feet looked a little swollen this morning. Great!

I lost weight over the last week. I'm now up only 4 ounces from my pre-preggers weight. That's shocking considering the amount of sweets I've been eating!

Zoe's movements are becoming more frequent and much more distinct. I love to feel her move. This morning I was resting my hand on my tummy, and I swear I felt two thumps against my hand. I was going to have Trevor feel them too, but I had to pee so bad that I couldn't lay there and relish in the moment. We'll see how the next few days go. I can't wait for him to feel his daughter move!

Zoe this week: apparently Zoe is developing her sense of movement and can feel my movements pretty well. She is also developing a keen sense of sound. We bought a book to read to her in utero called "Oh, Baby, the Places You'll Go". Trevor read it to her Sunday night and will continue to do so on a regular basis. Zoe's skin is reddish in color because of developing blood vessels, plus her skin is still pretty thin. Her skin is loose and saggy because skin develops faster than fat during fetal growth. I wonder why that has to change later in life??? LOL. (not that walking around with sagging skin would be very cute!)

Zoe is still approximately 11 inches long (head to heel) and weighs a little over 1 lb. She's about the size of a large mango:

Here's my big reveal. We finally took a pic of my belly bump on Sunday. This pic was taken at 22 weeks, 5 days. I'm certainly not the size of a large mango, but I'm definitely all baby!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Wanna Snoogle?

I'm having a very difficult time sleeping on my side. No matter what I do or try, I always manage to end up laying on my back. Yesterday I had the wise idea to purchase a Snoogle. I've read so many great reviews on it. I thought it would keep me on my side. Big mistake! I HATE the Snoogle!!! I'm going to try it again tonight, but I'm not hopeful. I'm convinced that a man designed the Snoogle. Why on Earth would someone design a pillow that is C-shaped for a woman that is going to have to use the restroom at least three times per night. The design is like a soft handcuff (or body cuff in this case)....almost like sleeping in an inner tube. Sounds comfy and practical, huh? NOT!!!! In order to get up and go pee I had to unhook the thing from between my legs, bring it over my head and THEN manage to slowly roll out of bed since round ligament pain slows me down. When I finally made it out of bed I was convinced I was going to pee on myself! Oh, and I still woke up on my back!?!? The Snoogle was immediately thrown on the floor. Last night I slept with the Snoogle behind my back. Tonight I'll try it in front of me. The sad thing is that if it doesn't work tonight, I'll have wasted $55 because it is non-refundable since it's a "personal use" item. ARGH!!!!!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Kidneys are Fine

I received a call from Dr. S's nurse yesterday. My urinalysis came back normal, so the pain on my left side isn't associated with any kidney problems. That's great news! I guess it truly is growing pains. I can accept that.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Too Much Sugar!

That's been the running theme for me the last couple of weeks. I don't know why I can't stop. I literally eat something sweet EVERY DAY! That can't be good for me, or for Zoe. But I can't stop. Okay, maybe "can't" is a strong word, but it's really tough for me to stop because I crave it so much. Yesterday was awful. I ate two donuts, a pack of Life Saver Gummies, and a two sopapillas with honey. Why?!

They say the first step in overcoming an addiction is to admit you have a problem. So here it is. I'm admitting it. I'm addicted to sugar. Lord, please help me!!!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A Husband's Dilemma

Trevor is facing a serious dilemma during this pregnancy. It seems that my snoring has become rather chronic. He said that he's resorted to watching me while I'm sleep to figure out why I'm snoring. He can't figure it out. LOL. There was a time, early in the pregnancy, that he could wake me up and ask me to sleep on my side, which would stop the snoring. Now it seems that I snore whether I'm on my side or on my back. Falling asleep at our house has become a race. Trevor says that he tries his hardest to fall asleep before me, but he remains astonished by my ability to fall asleep at the drop of a hat. Thus he loses the race nightly. I feel sorry for him, I really do. He has 18 more weeks to deal with my snoring. Sorry, my love!

22 Weeks!

Today begins my 22nd week. I'm experiencing more of the same - pain on my left side, both under my ribs and in my back. I'm doing better with my posture when I'm at work, so that's helping. I've also been having minor swelling in my feet after long days of standing and/or walking. The swelling goes away pretty easily with rest. I've finally logged positive numbers in terms of weight gain. As of this morning, I'm up 1lb. from my pre-preggo weight.

I'm feeling Zoe a lot these days. YAY!!! I feel her at least once a day, but usually at multiple intervals during the day. She's particularly active at night. I hope that's not a forecast of what's to come when she's born. (fingers crossed....)

Zoe this week: her lips, eyelids, and eyebrows are becoming more distinct. Tiny tooth buds are developing under her gums. (Hopefully she'll be blessed with perfect teeth that require no braces) Zoe's eyes are formed, but her irises still lack pigment. Her hair is still sprouting on her head, but because it has no pigment yet, it is bright white. So it seems that Zoe is a platinum blond right now! :- )

Zoe is 11 inches long and finally weighs about 1lb.!! She's about the size of a spaghetti squash:

Friday, October 10, 2008

$1,166

I saw crib bedding in a magazine last night that I LOVED!! I was so excited and thought this could be it. Finally, the perfect nursery theme. A silvery blue and mocha set. Yummy! I was sure Trevor would like it too. I eagerly began my Google searches and found the set. YES, found it! Oh, h--- to the NO!!! $1,166 for a 4-piece crib set. 4 pieces as in a sheet, bumper, blanket and bed skirt? $1,166?! Are you kidding me?! Is the crib included?! The search continues....

One Year Ago Today

Dear Zoe,

Today marks one year that your Grandpa D has been in Heaven. It's unfortunate that you won't get to meet him because he was such a kind and loving man. He often asked Daddy and me when we were going to give him a grand baby. I know he would've been so excited to meet you, but I know he'll be looking down on you from Heaven with great pride. Daddy and I will be sure to tell you all about him. He would've wanted great things for you, and he would've wanted you to know that the sky is the limit for your future. Education was paramount to him. He instilled that in Daddy and his brothers, and we'll be sure to instill that in you as well.

We love you, sweetness.

Mommy

21 weeks! (Plus a Prenatal Appointment)

Wednesday marked the start of my 21st week of pregnancy. Time is flying!

I'm feeling pretty good. The round ligament pain is much more manageable now. I guess I'm used to it. My backache has been joined by a pain in my left upper abdomen. The pain is in the same spot front to back. I only have it when I'm sitting, so I'm sure it's related to my posture. The abdominal pain is becoming more bothersome than the back pain. If I press the heel of my hand into my upper left abdomen, just below my ribs, I can alleviate the pain. Very strange, and I can't find anything about this in my pregnancy books or on pregnancy websites.

I had a routine appointment with Dr. S today and we discussed the pain I'm having. She said the only organ in the region of my pain is my pancreas, but she said if it were a pancreatic problem I'd have more symptoms, such as nausea and vomiting, and the pain wouldn't be isolated to when I'm sitting. She said it's probably from all the shifting my body is doing to make way for the baby. My urine came back clean today, but she's going to send it to a lab for further testing to make sure the pain isn't related to my kidneys since I'm simultaneously having pain in my back. If the pain gets worse she said we'll do some blood work to make sure nothing else is going on. Everything else during today's appointment went well. Blood pressure was good (110/72) and no sugar in my urine. Zoe's heartbeat was nice and strong - between 150-160 bpm. My uterus is measuring 20 cm and is just above my belly button.

Zoe this week: our little angel's eyebrows and eyelids are now present. She is swallowing several ounces of amniotic fluid for practice swallowing and digesting; the amniotic fluid also keeps her hydrated and nourished. Zoe's taste buds are well developed now and the amniotic fluid delivers a taste of whatever I've been eating. That means that Zoe has been getting her fill of turkey, bacon, guacamole sandwiches from Quiznos, Baked Lays, miso soup and California rolls. Oh, and cookies. (I'm still trying to kick the habit) I need to start introducing her to some veggies.

Zoe weighs approximately 11 ounces and is approximately 10.5 inches in length (head to heel). She's about the size of a large carrot:

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Nursery Themes

I don't know if we're unique in this respect, but we are having a terrible time pinning down a nursery theme. I know we have plenty of time before Zoe arrives, but I don't want to scramble around at the end of my pregnancy trying to get a lot done. One bedding set we are considering won't be available for shipping until the end of December, so we really need to figure this out.

One thing we agree on is that we don't want anything too "kiddie" or juvenile. Thus, no animals, characters, letters and numbers, etc. I've found a few themes I like, but Trevor and I aren't seeing eye-to-eye on many of them, and I really want him to be involved in the process. I've ordered some fabric swatches for some bedding sets we both kind of like, so we'll see what happens. I never imagined that picking a nursery theme would be so difficult.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Incomprehensible

Sunday evening, Trevor and I received news that one of our friends passed away. Her name is Donna. Trevor went to UT with her husband. Donna was only 37. I took the news pretty hard for a few reasons. First, Donna was a remarkable woman. One of the kindest people you'd ever hope to meet. This Earth now has a void that can't be filled. Second, Donna had an amazing story of surviving cancer in her 20s. She was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma and won the battle over cancer. Her story was inspiring. She was full of life, happily married, loved the Lord and had a wonderful future ahead of her.

Donna has two children now. They're adorable. Her oldest is 3 years old and the youngest is almost 2 years old. When Donna was pregnant with her youngest she found out she had breast cancer. I was so devastated to hear this news. Cancer, twice, at such a young age. Because Donna was pregnant, it limited the type of treatment should could receive and she was determined not to do anything to harm her baby. She was able to receive radiation treatments and in her third-trimester she had a mastectomy under general anesthesia. After having her baby, she started chemo. I was so hopeful that she would beat cancer once again. Unfortunately, she didn't. Donna passed away on Sunday. Apparently the cancer was too aggressive and spread throughout her body. After the shock wore off, I just cried. I cried for her husband. I can't imagine losing a spouse. I don't know what I'd do if I lost Trevor. I cried for her mother who took care of her baby. I can't imagine being a parent and having to bury your child. I cried for Donna's children. They were robbed of such a wonderful mother. And I cried for Donna. Why did she have to suffer so much? I wondered what her last thoughts were. I know they were of her children. How do you say good-bye? It's incomprehensible. Now that I'm on my journey towards motherhood, I want to be here to see not only Zoe (and any children that follow), but also Zoe's children. I pray for this every night for Trevor and I. I pray for long life for both of us because I want Trevor by my side for every minute of it. I hope my prayers are answered.

I hope Donna's children and husband will be okay. I know they will be. And I hope Donna is at peace. I know she is. I just can't believe she's gone. It was far too soon.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Butterflies That Go Thud

It finally happened! I felt Zoe move!!! YAY!!!! I felt her for the first time last night, but wasn't sure if I was imagining things. Well, I felt her again tonight and it felt the same way. I've been feeling light thuds in my lower abdomen with a sensation immediately following that feels like butterflies. It's the most wonderful feeling in the world.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Halftime!

On Wednesday I hit the halfway mark. 20 weeks already!? I found out I was pregnant quite early in my pregnancy--4 weeks and 2 days to be exact. The last 16 weeks have really flown by!

I'm still feeling pretty good. I'm still having round ligament pain, but I expect that to be the trend for the remainder of my pregnancy. My back is still hurting. I received the back support cushion our supply person ordered at work. It doesn't work. My back pain is no better, but it's also no worse. I've tried sitting in the secondary chair that's in my office, but it doesn't help either. It sits too low and isn't adjustable. Today I'm trying out my colleague's chair. He just moved to a partner office and they have different chairs than associates. We agreed to swap chairs if I like his better. I don't. The best positions are standing and laying down. That's the only real relief I'm getting these days. This is a pain in the back! (Okay, that was corny....) On to more exciting stuff.....

Zoe this week: our little angel is getting plenty of practice for her digestive system by swallowing more these days. She is producing meconium, which is a black, sticky by-product of digestion. This will be what her first BMs will consist of. Zoe's uterus is fully formed this week (amazing!) and her vaginal canal is starting its development. Her ovaries contain 7 million primitive eggs, although she'll only have 2 million at birth. More than enough to bless Trevor and me with grandchildren MUCH later.

There's still plenty of growing to do, but Zoe weighs approximately 10.5 ounces and is approximately 6.5 inches head to bottom, and about 10 inches from head to heel. About the length of a banana:

Is That Even Possible?

I weighed myself Monday morning as usual and was sufficiently satisfied that my weight gain was under control. While I'm gradually gaining, I was happy to see that I was still 3lbs lighter than I was pre-preggers. I haven't been starving myself. Just trying to eat sensibly. Slow and steady wins the race, right?

Fast forward to this morning. I don't know why I decided to weigh myself, but I did. Boy was I in for a surprise! It seems that I've gained 2.8 lbs (I refuse to round it to 3 lbs), I repeat, 2.8 lbs.....in four days. Huh?! Really?! Is that even possible???? Four days!? I mean really. It took God seven days to create the heavens and the Earth. Yet I managed to gain 2.8 lbs in four days. Wow! At this rate, I stand to gain 98 lbs before Zoe arrives. I have 138 days to go. At a rate of 2.8 lbs every four days, that's a whopping 98 lbs. Really, it is. I did the math.

Okay, so I know I'm not going to gain 98 lbs. I'm completely exaggerating. I'm just completely in shock right now.

Confession: My sweet tooth is back. I made the awful mistake of buying some of those break-and-bake cookies. Chocolate chip w/ walnuts. Yum....especially straight out of the oven. I ate twelve gooey cookies last weekend. In three days. But I weighed myself on Monday and the damage wasn't too bad. Or so I thought. How long does it take for twelve cookies to register on the scale?! Apparently four days. Must throw away cookies TONIGHT!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Second Trimester Screening

Last Friday, we had our second trimester screening done. The screening was largely uneventful, other than finding out we're having a Zoe!!! :- ) But uneventful (i.e., boring) is good for a pregnancy. Everything looked great during the screening. The doctor was able to get a very good view of Zoe's anatomy. All of her vital organs looked perfect! Her heartbeat was nice and strong---150 bpm. We'll go back again in approximately six weeks for another look, but everything looks great. We are so thankful.

I did find out during the screening that I have an anterior placenta, which explains why I haven't been feeling Zoe move. When an egg implants in the uterus it usually implants in the posterior uterus (i.e., back of the uterus). Occasionally, an egg will implant on the front of the uterus. That's what happened in my case. It means absolutely nothing in terms of the health of the pregnancy, but it does mean that I have a barrier between Zoe and my stomach, thus the placenta is cushioning her movements. When she gets a little bigger and her movements become stronger, I'll be able to feel them. Mystery solved.