Category Archives: pregnancy

birth….

Relieeved after epidural

Relieved after epidural

I am slowly getting used to this whole parenting thing. What a line in the sand. I am exhausted and yet constantly amazed by the little milk monster I gave birth too.

Everyone loves a good birth/labor story right? Here is mine pretty much copy and pasted (with some editing) from my first 24hour-hormone-high email to a couple of best friends.

So labor was intense–this might be too much or too boring but it was crazy!
We induced the night of June 1st. I came in with high blood pressure which had the nurses a little worried and running a bunch of labs (I may have been slightly preclampic–so swollen as well, but I also have never been a patient before so was super nervous).
I thought the cervidil (thin tampon cream medicine for cervical ripening) would just cause light aches but it started contractions all night. AND PREGNANT FRIENDS–if shit hurts try and pee because I couldn’t tell the difference between contractions and having to pee but once I did pee I felt so much better. This was all before official labor too–so in the morning my cervix was soft but not really dilated and a little effaced. She was just too high and facing the wrong way.
Once we got her turned in the morning (due to my awesome nurse and the bed gymnastics she had me do) and was on Pitocin (part of induction after the cervidil) I started dilating and effacing like mad and everyone was surprised. My water broke on its own–It felt like a pop and was like ‘get the nurse something happened!’
Once your water pops/breaks the uterus squeezes down way more and without any cushioning. Contraction pain went from a 5 to a 10+++ in like a second. It hurt so bad, I was crying and writhing and climbing the walls. I got an epidural and it was THE BEST thing ever. I was so happy and I thought the only thing that could make it better was a cheese burger–its too bad they don’t let you eat. Once i had the epidural my body unclenched (as much as epidurals can slow down labor, they can also speed it up by relaxing your body) and I went from 5-9/10 cm in like 2 hours. But then my blood pressure dropped and she didn’t like that so I had to get fluid boluses and extra oxygen and had to lie on my side. SO that part of epidurals sucks. Then I labored and got to push (after trying to let her labor down) but her head was too big and wouldn’t pass my pubic bone–she is on the large side but not huge but her head is HUGE and ROUND. Blaming that on W.
SO we tried and tried and I was a great pusher and I didn’t know this but they bolus the epidurals so by the time you push its wearing off and you can really feel it. I asked to push my pca button but the doctor said no so I could push more and SE wouldn’t be all narced up…until she had another late decel (late decels are bad because it means her placenta or cord is not able to give her enough O2 through the contraction–very very bad) and she didn’t recover right away–my heart rate was higher than hers at 80–her norm (and every fetus/infant norm) is 140. So it was scary. My MD said I could try for awhile longer after she recovered but when 4-5 nurses rush in the room because of your babies monitor and they flip you onto all 4s, head down, maxing the fluids, with the 02 cranked–you know its time for a csection. I didn’t want her to go through that again.
Csection was so fast but the anesthesia made me shake violently and they can give a pain med for that but of course I was watching my BP and it was going low low and it was already scary enough and they were still pounding in the fluids to support it. I was so scared I could feel the csection but I didn’t–just tugging and everyone was happy and smiling (seriously the best team of nurses/doctors/resp therapists I could ask for) and when she came out my doctor was like ‘LOOK at those CHEEKS!” she wailed and had a 9,9 APGAR score (measurement of life taken at 1 and 5 min–that is as close to perfect as you can get). And I heard her and it was nuts–the hormones rushing in and euphoria and I asked Wesley “Is she ours!!!? Is that her!??!?” like it could be anyone else’s baby but it all felt so surreal and like I would jump off the table (insides still on the outside) and beat up anyone who tried to take her away from me–that is some fucking powerful evolutionary shit there. I was also SUPER high because of the drugs.
Then I got to recovery and rested till she joined me and we were so happy. So high off everything. Labor, or how labor happened–didn’t even matter for me. For W however…
W was way more torn up than me because he didn’t get the drugs or the hormones. He really went through the wringer watching us and being pretty helpless. Can you imagine watching people you love go through 1-2 days of hell and not really being able to help?? He was so exhausted while I was totally awake and smiling and laughing after.
Motherhood day 1 is awesome. It is seriously a line and now I can’t imagine what it was like without her–isn’t that nuts!?! I know its the chemicals/hormones but She is magical. I never thought anything could be as cuter than a puppy but I was wrong.
SE is cuter than Hface. Or, as we now call them: Little Chomper is cuter than Big Chomper (names switch as SE grows). But don’t worry Big Chomp–you were first and will get your adventures just have to allow Little Chomp to come too!

holy crap–one week!….

I had a baby. Today she is one week old. We made it through the first week which, at times for each of us and like all new parents, seemed improbable.

W and I have each had our meltdowns and fears but as far as new parents go I think we are doing an A+ job. Ask me again at week 2 🙂

I have lots of stories that hopefully won’t be too boring or TMI. Will share those as soon as I get time to also change my clothes, sleep and shower. Those must come first.

A very orange picture of us.

A very orange picture of us.

In the mean time:

how to cool off a chomper….

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Chomper (aka Henry, H,  Hface, Chompface, Chomp, Chomperstein, Bearface, Bear, Face, Facetime…no wonder he is neurotic and confused). Photos curtsey of W.

10 months….

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Well hmm….I didn’t think I would be writing this post. I thought she would BE HERE!

At least I have had a lot of distractions this last week. My Mom and Brother were here and we had a good time keeping busy and I even got W, my Brother and I into a free/open bar comedy show at Hothouse Productions. Its was hilarious! and featured Dana Gould, Brody Stevens (who recently got picked up for a HBO show) and some others. The open bar was sort of a waste since only W partook–though I did grab a pop tart from $0.05 Diner down the block. Also, we had amazing KBBQ at Mr. Lee‘s prior.

I was hoping the laughing would trigger labor but it didn’t.

It was great to spend time with Mom and Bro–we walked and walked and ate and ate and talked and talked. This was the first week I noticed swelling of ankles and hands–gross–not Kim K. level but definitely cankles.

I feel a little bit bad about the visit. My Mom and Brother visited a 10 month pregnant person (comparable to a recently hibernating bear) and didn’t even get the action of labor or cuteness of a new baby. I believe at one point I said: ‘Why isn’t everyone doing what I want right now! I want everyone to do what I want without me asking!!!’…only slightly joking and not only expecting everyone to do what I want but do it psychically. At least LA was being pretty wonderful and not too hot AND W and Hface were both awesome.

So what else is going on? Well my belly button is ripping in half.

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1. I am wearing shorts but you just can’t see them! 2. the dark lower spot is the ever-cracking deepest part of my button with new skin growing in the middle. 3. The dark top spot was the top of my college belly piercing spot. 4. the line in the middle was the top part of my button. Sad 😦 Could be worse 🙂

Most cutelittlepregnant ladies get cutelittlespregnant outie belly buttons. I used to have a lovely tiny, but deep, belly button. Pregnancy has not led to a cutelittlepregnant outie for me. Nope. My belly button stretched, distorted and ripped. Seriously ripped; as in a cycles of cracking, bleeding, healing then repeat. I have a whole area in the middle of fresh new flesh. It’s as if my belly is the Pacific Ocean and my belly button is a Hawaiian Island always erupting and creating new land. I just wonder that after all this, after my belly deflates/oceans drained, what will happen to it. I am guessing no more wondrous belly button…so sad.

Not really that sad (more just funny)–if this is the worst pregnancy does…I am a very lucky individual!

39 weeks….

39 Weeks...or dog running from struggling beached whale.

39 Weeks…or dog running from struggling beached whale.

Guys! Wow!

I went to the Dr. yesterday and things are pretty much the same since last time despite stretching and bouncing. Next week we have to measure again and talk about options— that is if she has not made her way out. I have decided to not think about it. She and my body will either cooperate OR not. OR she will be ripped from my abdomen! Either way this thing, child parenthood daughter, is happening sometime soon like a freight train (kidding) and cannot be stopped.

SO what am I thinking about? Guys! What am I doing?!?

H and I went to the beach with W! W got to go cause we went on a Sunday. It was fun!….like in every other post on this blog. I bought a Huntington Dog Beach Hoodie that I have been wearing nonstop even though it’s sort of ugly…BUT I am pretty sure it is the happiest place on earth–its a Disney scene come to life with all the excited animals and people–we should break into song!…um I may have been the crazy lady singing at the beach.

H and W resting....well, H is waiting to run again.

H and W resting….well, H is waiting to run again.

Speaking of H. He went to a full day of doggy daycare at Wagville yesterday since I am not very mobile. He is still sleeping it off…too much partying.

ALSO! My Mom and Bro are visiting. This is very awesome and it would be nice if the kiddo came while they were here but I don’t mind if she doesn’t cause then I get to spend more time with them by myself and not screaming in pain. PLUS we will get to go to KBBQ!

LAST BUT NOT LEAST! Did I mention I am going to be in an ART SHOW! I am a former graphic designer [GD] so lots of that stuff has been seen in newspapers, car wraps, websites, billboards….blahblahbah BUT part of the reason I left GD was because I wanted ART to be for ART and not for $$$. SO here goes. I am doing some paintings. I like them but there are a lot of emotions and passions going around so I am a little afraid they might be TOO much. I love color so they are mainly and exploration in color. COLOR and PASSIONS and HORMONES lead to some grandiose paintings. Also–I have learned that I can draw a human body but painting one–nope. Not to the level I would show people. I don’t have control of the brush the way I do with charcoal or pencil. Not in the way I want it which is messy but discernible and mature. I LOVE MESSY! I will let you know the deets of the ART SHOW soon.

I am considering photography as well but what do you think? Should I pull some photos–I have gleaned 20 I think may be good enough and could narrow it down to 5-10.

Art? How do I narrow down? Art, too artsy, people, not people??

Art? How do I narrow down? Art, too artsy, people, not people?? What do you like in photography? I want some criticism!

the reason I got pregnant….

Well since she was a little bit of a surprise its more the first reason I was EXCITED I got pregnant. I waited 9.5 months for this!

Henry as a mountain goat!

Henry as a mountain goat!

I really wanted him to stand with all his 4 little legs together but I think this is as close as I can get. Also–I may not have showered in 2 days when this pic was taken so I am a little bit of a disaster. BUT in the end who cares!!!—MY DOG CAN FIT ON MY BELLY!

38 weeks….

Lamest, laziest pregnancy picture ever.

Lamest, laziest pregnancy picture ever. Do you like my green sweatpants? W LOVES them [insert sarcasm]!

I figure I should post every week until this kid comes or else you would have no more updates. No more updates!–you would be so dissapointed!

So how is it being 38 weeks pregnant?!?! Well this week is sucking it up. In fact it is sucking so bad that I might just pretend this week didn’t happen. We shall start again next week. Yes.

Why?

Part of it is for reasons that are completely unrelated to pregnancy. Things that I do not talk about here.Words are not enough and since they are not enough I cannot write about it.

The pregnancy part: I am still heavy, getting cervical twinges (not contractions), and am whiny and cry because I love H or W or chocolate or milk SO MUCH and what if they did not EXIST! What if HGTV or the Holly Madison Birth Special was not ON! What if on Flip Flop they did not make $$ on the house (they always make $$ on the house)! AND What if I cannot fit ALL the glasses in the dishwasher! There is a CRUMB on the FLOOR! How do I walk the dog and go swimming?!?! WHAT IF I READ ALL THE BOOKS AND THERE ARE NO MORE BOOKS TO READ! Why does this issue of Vanity Fair not have the good articles!!! Look at H, he is so cute, what if he were NOT that cute! Oh man, the tears! TEARS!

Its getting a little PMSy around here to say the least.

BUT here is the real thing: I went for my weekly checkup with the MD yesterday and while last week he was all ‘I would be surprised if you made it another week!’ This week he asked if I was getting contractions and I said no but cervical sharp twinges and he said ‘Twinges are NOT going to get this baby out!’ I fail at early contractions. Then during my exam he looked at me concerned and said ‘She is upside down [like she has been for months!] but she is not engaged, she is super high…look I can push on the top of  her head from the outside!’

Well fuck SE, my daughter. You are just being an asshole.

They (the healthcare providers) want the fetuses head firmly engaged in the pelvis by now. For first time Moms they want this by 36 weeks. And if she was low last time does that mean she disengaged?? So what does it mean if she is not??? It means A) She is just taking her time about it and will still engage…maybe just hours before labor. B) She will not engage and therefore not come out my vagina. Both options could result in a Csections because with A her cord could prolapse and this is very bad–very very bad. With B, well then she is just an ass and would like her mom to go through surgery.

It is okay to call your fetus on being an asshole right?!? Cause as much as I love and am excited to meet her…she is kind of being an ass right now.

This means that if I were considering home birth or birth center birth, I would no longer be eligible. I wasn’t considering either but its weird to know that I am not in the ‘super normal’ category anymore.

Also my blood pressure was high. Guys! my blood pressure is usually awesome–always under 120 unless you take it right after my morning cup of coffee. My systolic was 136, 4 points shy of preclampsia testing and they wanted a urine (for protein) sample anyway. This sucks–not as much as having it but I COULD have it or be going that direction and it’s scary.

I just see my pretty perfect pregnancy (aside from maybe too much weight gain) getting derailed in the last hooray!. That is not cool, and a bit scary. This week was a reminder of–oh yeah, woman and fetuses can have a hard time or, you know…die from this.

So I will do some more butterfly stretches, squats and bounce around on a yoga ball (for pelvis opening and fetal engagement), and you! SE will engage without getting your cord caught, and we will start again next week.

Meanwhile, Hface and I are going to the beach.

 

 

 

 

 

pregnancy loon ravings….

I tried to stem the pregnancy posts but it’s impossible. Its all-engrossing and such a weird/cool experience that half our population can go through. Not for everyone but I am really glad I get to experience it.

As SE’s due date approaches I am having some late-stage pregnancy thoughts.

Right now SE is mine, ALL MINE. I think this and I hug my front, holding her in.

I! am making her, she is inside ME, a part of me. Okay–W contributed a little but that one tadpole was awfully small…so really…I mean 5% is generous right!?!? Kidding…kind of….I mean I grew her like a frikin’ watermelon! I made a whole organ for her! SHE IS MINE!

Not really. She grew herself with my and, I must admit, W’s help.

With each kick, each cervix head-butt she is asserting herself, becoming a separate identity. This is amazing and beautiful and hard to think about.

Soon, tonight, tomorrow, next week but probably not as long as a month from now I am going to have to share her. I am going to have to share her with W, with Hface, with our parents, families and friends….I am going to have to share her with HERSELF!

This is amazing and beautiful and wonderful and something that happens a bazillion times a day.

In the meantime, I squeeze my bulging abdomen and relish this current second when she is still mine…all mine.

a day in the life of maternity leave….

New York Times Paid Maternal Leave Map

God forbid we offer paid maternity leave because then we could be on par with…I don’t know….the REST OF THE WORLD.

Also for those of you not in California–it should be a different color. It should be the middle blue color. It, compared to the rest of the country, is a great place to have a baby. Maternity leave is PAID here–considered a disability. I know you are thinking–California has some serious budget issues but its not paying maternity leave that is causing the problem. It may be more related to putting people in prison for life for stealing  socks–just as an example. ANYWAY–enough politics! No Fighting!

So I am on maternity leave and have been for a couple weeks. It is hard. “Hard!” you snort laughing–“You DON’T DO ANYTHING!!!!”

Well I do do stuff [whine!]. Its just hard to do much (why it is a disability that prevents you from performing work–especially moving 200-400 lb patients all day). So here is the day in the life of my maternity leave.

0645-750: Wake up to glaring LA sunshine and the ridiculous birds outside my window. They are not pleasant in the early morning–its like there is a massive bird war going on in the palm trees outside my window. People poo-poo this until they stay with us and are like “WTF with the birds?!?”

The view from our deck with the bird war palms and the almost finished  teasing  lake/park...cannot wait till I can stroll it!

The view from our deck with the bird war palms and the almost finished teasing lake/park…cannot wait till I can stroll it!

Maternity reading. I have finished 2, almost 3 of these. Can you guess what one I will read last?

Maternity reading. I have finished 2, almost 3 of these. Can you guess what one I will read last?

0750-0830: Try to get out of bed. This is hard, it hurts and is usually a 5 step process of rolling my super dense ungainly body onto my side, pulling H onto the bed from his bed, giving him a morning scratch, then SE wakes up and starts kicking my bladder. I then have H motivate me by using the word ‘walk’ which gets him all excited and involves jumping on my face and enough pain that I sit up. Groan.

0835: stumble to the bathroom and pee.

0836-0840: Pause at the office, still nude in a completely whale/unsexy way and harass W with what I think is some super funny morning comment when all he wants is his morning quiet time to read nerd blogs before work.

H and his summer haircut in a morning tangle.

H and his summer haircut in a morning tangle.

0840-0850: try to dress in whatever still fits. This is hard. Putting on pants, even sweat pants, is the hardest thing in the world.

0850-0920: Walk the still jumping/dancing dog at my feet. What used to be a 10 minute walk around the block is now 30+ minutes much to H’s delight. Sometimes we walk the 1 mile round trip to the coffee shop which is more exciting for both of us (H gets to smell so much stuff! and he gets a piece of muffin) but takes FOREVER. I usually call my Mom for company during these walks.

0921: pee again

….until 1200: drink my coffee and eat breakfast and read all the blogs on the internet. Check Facebook a million times. Watch HGTV marathon…trying to stop! Usually end up staring at gmail thinking ‘someone email me!’ until I get so frustrated I do something else or make popcorn and bean H in the head with it. Super funny cause it bounces off (obviously doesn’t hurt him) his huge hair and then he chomps it in the most dramatic fashion ever. Pee three times.

1200–1600: do something adventurous or at least walk because sitting or laying hurts to much after awhile. We have not had as many adventures lately but our afternoon usually includes a long walk, beach trip, or some pool time (H hates pool time cause he has to stay inside but it is the one place I am weightless!). This time also includes a nap. If its hot this adventure has to happen earlier or later in the day–and usually takes the full 4 hours instead of the former 1 hour. Pee two times.

adventures=massive amounts of RUNNING! YES!

adventures=massive amounts of RUNNING! YES!

And getting thrown into the ocean for a mandatory cool down.

And getting thrown into the ocean for a mandatory cool down.

Favorite place in the world

Favorite place in the world

Last time we helped rescue a sea lion pup, this time lobsters and 1 crab

Last time we helped rescue a sea lion pup, this time lobsters and 1 crab

surfer! They were in the tubes!!!!

surfer! They were in the tubes!!!!

1600-1900: try not to watch TV, turn on Spotify and listen to new tunes, do some art, clean. Make dinner. Pee two times

1900–2100: W quality time and primetime TV watching. If I am lucky (I usually am) I get a back scratch/massage from W. These are not short. I am spoiled. Also,factor in 20 minutes of body maneuvering so W can reach my back. Pee 2-4 times

2100: Walk H.

2130…: pee,  fall asleep watching criminal minds, nova, or HGTV.

I guess it does sound pretty awesome. But there are things you have to know about me 1. I hate being useless (even though I know I will go back to my job soon)–its very depressing, I go stir crazy and get lonely very easily–I wish I knew more people here in my neighborhood. 2. I have no will power–its hard for me to turn off the TV: I am trying really hard to push myself before SE comes, do some art, read, and explore things I can do with little movement. 3. I waited tables in crappy shoes for a long time–I already have a crappy lower back, knees and hips so the added weight is making things worse–I walk a lot. Walking in supportive shoes is my most comfortable thing to do aside from swimming. Everything else: laying down, sleeping, bending, and sitting hurts. 4. Any alteration to this schedule–ie doctors appointment, surprise jack hammering [literally happened today] of my apartment wall, car checkups, or pretty much any little thing leads to hormone surge and crying. Massive crying. I am super pleasant to be around right now 🙂

9 months….

My view down

My view down

9 months on monday. I am a house or a tank or a whale. I ache. I super waddle. I get sooooo tired without doing anything. Its hard to breath. I do not look good, or sexy. Again, I am a whale. This is not a cry for ‘No you look great!’ comments–I am at the end of pregnancy and this will soon be over. Jezebel did a good article on this here and I totally agree–we are cute pregnant for about a month and a half  and the rest of the time you either look like you ate to many doughnuts or like a whale–I am in the whale stage.

Anyway–here are photos and a look at our finished nursery/guest room. It looks a bit cluttery and less eclectic but I promise it is more ecletic in real life…and less cluttery.

Jaunty stomach.

Jaunty stomach.

Saggy stomach that is getting sooo full even though she has been in GO position for over a month. And Henry wanted to be in the photo.

Saggy stomach that is getting sooo full even though she has been in GO position for over a month. And Henry wanted to be in the photo.

The face of a dog who does not believe he is getting enough walks--3 per day IS NOT ENOUGH!!!

The face of a dog who does not believe he is getting enough walks–3 per day IS NOT ENOUGH!!!

Nursery side of the guest room. The changing table attached to the wall that folds up was a great compromise. The crib will be in our room for the first while and the rocking chair--that I love--is light and can float to the living room or outside. Such a small space but I love it! The wall is full of sentimental pieces--I have a feeling the whole wall will be covered soon.

Nursery side of the guest room. The changing table attached to the wall that folds up was a great compromise. The crib will be in our room for the first while and the rocking chair–that I love–is light and can float to the living room or outside. Such a small space but I love it! The wall is full of sentimental pieces–I have a feeling the whole wall will be covered soon.

Close up of chair and her shelves of things--look at her SHOES! and her BOOKS! The quilt on the chair was my elephant quilt--the one in her crib was my sun quilt baby blanket--but if she doesn't like them she has plenty in her baskets in her shelf. OH! and I know she will not have anything in her crib but her swaddled self when she is in it.

Close up of chair and her shelves of things–look at her SHOES! and her BOOKS! The quilt on the chair was my elephant quilt–the one in her crib was my sun quilt baby blanket–but if she doesn’t like them she has plenty in her baskets in her shelf. OH! and I know she will not have anything in her crib but her swaddled self when she is in it.

The other side that still has the scary boy painting and we traded out our uncomfortable guest couch for a twin bed. AND her GIANT sock monkey we found at wallgreen that is the best stuffed animal ever--I put the ribbon on her/him. I totally though I would find some expensive yuppy stuffed animal but the sock monkey found us and he/she is awesome!

The other side that still has the scary boy painting and we traded out our uncomfortable guest couch for a twin bed. AND her GIANT sock monkey we found at wallgreen that is the best stuffed animal ever–I put the ribbon on her/him. I totally though I would find some expensive yuppy stuffed animal but the sock monkey found us and he/she is awesome!

So that is it! I wish I could show you the whole room but I show you because angles are off. Anyway–its homey and calm and light. I hope she likes it 🙂