Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Week 22

Ok, we've officially been to the hospital every week for three weeks. We've even gotten our mental parking map laid out so that we know where we can park at that time of the morning. At this appointment with the doctor, my main concern was H1N1, as it affects pregnant women and young children with a more devastating impact than the general population. After being told to gain more weight at the last dr's appt, I was happy to hear that I have gained 7 lbs since that time. I bet it was all the dairy that did it. Man. He said my weight was on target now and to keep it up. I could really get to like this whole "stuff your face" advice being dispensed by the ol' doc. I've been sticking to the healthy stuff...for the most part, since everytime I eat something with sugar in it, I imagine the poor little one getting the shakes. The same way I do when I drink caffeine. Weird visual, I know. But, it keeps me away from the naughty stuff.
Except vanilla ice cream with milk and oreos. For the calcium of course.

I have been feeling the baby ALL THE TIME now. I mean, really strong, easily recognizable kicks. I can't believe it. Its getting so real now. He reminds me all day that he's here, just an eating, sleeping and kicking little passenger onboard for this crazy ride. Its amazing. We marvel at it many times a day when we are in the car or talking on the telephone. Its very exciting.

Watch what you say -- baby is now able to hear outside noise from down in the womb. Studies show that baby finds gentle music and your own voice most soothing. Nipples are starting to sprout, and that little face is fully formed. And, baby's starting to settle into sleep cycles, snoozing about 12 to 14 hours a day. It shouldn't be hard to figure out when -- just pay attention to those kicks as they start and stop.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Week 21

We went to the follow-up U/S and even though it took about 30 minutes of rolling over on my side, poking and drinking sugary drinks, Baby finally, at the very last minute, turned around so that the U/S tech could get a good view of his little baby heart. She said it looked good. I was literally 2 minutes from being sent downstairs to the fetal EKG unit. That made me nervous. His estimated weight was 14 oz and his due date had been moved to 12/30/09. Maybe I'll get my 2009 baby after all...

Baby gulps down several ounces of amniotic fluid every day, both for hydration and nutrition and to practice swallowing and digesting. And, these days, those taste buds actually work! Studies show that after birth, babies are most interested in tastes they've already experienced through amniotic fluid. Meaning, think about what you want your future child to eat as you prepare your own lunch.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Week 20

We went to our Anatomical Ultrasound and found out that Its a.......

BOY!!! I can't believe it! To be honest, Big Guy couldn't either. I had all my money on it being a girl. Wow. I was the first one to spot the boy "turtle" that we saw on the screen versus the girl "hamburger" that I was prepared for. Of course, in the weeks before this ultrasound, I gave myself a crash course on detecting gender and other anatomical details on an ultrasound by perusing hundreds of pictures online. Crazy, I know. I told you over-information. All the time.

Me: Oh my! I see a turtle! Its a boy!
Big Guy: *quietly says* Holy sh!t! *runs fingers through his hair and leans back in chair - wide-eyed - in utter amazement*
Me: I can't believe its a boy. I'm so happy.*tears*

Outside of ultrasound room:
Big Guy: YES! *kneels on one knee and gives a hardy Tiger Woods fist pump*
Me: *side eye*

It really was a great day for the both of us. I wanted a report of a healthy baby and Big Guy wanted the same AND wanted to know the gender. We both got what we wanted. He even videotaped me outside the hospital (no video cameras allowed inside without permit). Its very sweet of him to remember my desire to document this process in pictures. He's a sweetheart. I'm glad he's my babydaddy. And husband of course!

We spent the entire ride to work calling our siblings and parents to share the news.

That night, to celebrate, we ate dinner at a German restaurant. I picked one in Midtown since it was a bit late by the time he finished at the gym and our Queens favorite would be closed. The food at this place was terrible. Big Guy said everything tasted like a pickle had been stirred around in it. His description was dead on and it made me laugh until I was holding my stomach. Too much vinegar. Too much dill. We still had a good time recounting our morning. That's what really counts.

I forgot to mention - the baby was turned with his front facing my spine for most of the U/S session so we were told to return for a follow-up U/S so they could get a good view. The technician immediately told me not to worry, that this was standard when the baby was in an unfavorable position, but of course I was worried anyway. Big Guy had to reassure me more than once that I need not worry. We have another scheduled for next week.

Baby's digestive system is busy creating meconium (a tarry black substance made of swallowed amniotic fluid, digestive secretion and dead cells), which will fill the first diaper after birth. And, speaking of the diaper situation... baby's genitals are now fully formed!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Week 19

I had my blood drawn for the second screen "quad screen" drawn this week. Of course, I'll be calling to pester them for the results just as soon as the waiting time is over.

Update: The test results were good. I know I'm a pain-in-the-pants but I actually expected a more scientific response from the nurse who read the results. Hello! Would it kill you to give me the statistical data so I can worry myself sick with the numbers? kthanks.

Oh, I almost forgot! I applied for A Baby Story but since Baby is due outside of their production schedule, it looks like our little sweetheart will have to wait a little longer to make his/her debut on the silver screen.

Vernix caseosa, a greasy white substance made of lanugo, oil and dead skin cells (eww) now coats baby's skin, shielding it from the amniotic fluid. (Picture yourself after a nine-month bath, and the need for protection makes sense.) You might actually get to see the vernix at birth, especially if baby is premature.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Week 18

The Big Guy is getting so excited about finding out the little one's gender. I'd really like for it to be a surprise. Since I've been told by two psychics that it would be a girl, I feel like I already know the answer. He wants a boy and I just want a surprise. I've decided that I'll find out when he does though because I could never stand to live with him knowing that he knows the baby's gender and I don't. I'm a grown-up that way :)

Your fetus has become amazingly mobile (at least compared to you), passing the hours yawning, hiccuping, rolling, twisting, kicking, punching, sucking and swallowing. And, baby's finally big enough that you'll be able to feel those movements soon.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Week 17

Umm..well, the bar exam is just a couple days away. The baby's size resembles an onion but lets hope the results from this exam don't make me cry :)

I had my monthly appointment today and the doctor said everything looks good. This is always good news.

I've been feeling the baby flutter. Its slight, but its definitely the little one and not the meal I just ate. I'm most aware of the movements when I'm sitting still at my desk.

Baby's skeleton is hardening, changing from rubbery cartilage to bone, and fat is finally accumulating around it. The umbilical cord is getting thicker and stronger, and those little fingers and toes are now topped by one-of-a-kind prints.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Week 16

I'm about one week from the Bar Exam and I've just barely looked over all the materials. Oops.
I've allowed myself to mix half decafs/regular coffee once a day this week so that I can stay away long enough to get through an entire mock exam. My fascination with fruit and salads is slowly easing up and my new love is dairy. Yes, I actually enjoy drinking milk. Well, not straight from a glass but as the base for hot breakfast cereals (oatmeal, farina, etc.). And whats a hot cereal without fresh fruit? Blueberries? Check. Strawberries? Double check.

These meals make me think of my Oma. I miss her and hope to be able to hold some sort of memorial on her birthday next year once Baby arrives. Its funny how life is, isn't it? Life and death existing in the same places? I remember kissing her goodbye the weekend before she died. I was about 3 weeks pregnant.

Watch what you say... tiny bones forming in baby's ears mean the little one can now pick up your voice. Eyebrows, lashes and hair are starting to fill in, and taste buds are forming. And, if you're interested, an ultrasound might be able to determine gender.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Week 15

I can't believe I've got a little orange in there! Since the NT results, I've been a little less worried about the little one...though its just a scan, not a guarantee. I've always been a touch on the neurotic side about my health and the health of others so I have to learn to just let go and relax. My diet hasn't really changed for the most part, though I've noticed that my meals have gotten smaller (i.e. I'm not as hungry), but I'm hungry more often. I'm REALLY tempted to weigh myself to see just how this new decrease in portion size but increase in meal increments has affected me. The Big Guy has also noticed that I breath heavily when climbing the stairs to our apartment. Strange, since I realize that Baby isn't yet big enough to compress my chest cavity.
Since I always err on the "over-informed" side, I looked it up - those pesky pregnancy hormones are to blame for the labored breathing. It should correct itself. Just in time for the size of the baby to have an actual impact on my lung capacity. Fantastic.

Continuing the march towards normal proportions, baby's legs now outmeasure the arms. And, finally, all four limbs have functional joints. Your fetus is squirming and wiggling like crazy down in the womb, though you probably still can't feel the movements.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Week 14

I'm getting closer to the day of the bar exam and now I'm getting nervous! I haven't been able to study as much , as it doesn't fit in well with my nap schedule. Which is just about all day. When I'm not working of course! Good thing I've already got one bar membership under my belt. This would be a lot more urgent if my career depended on it :) Oh yeah, I'm STILL waiting on an answer for my maternity leave proposal. I'm pretty sure it will be approved but I'd like to have written confirmation. What? Its the lawyer in me. And one more thing, I cleaned my office today (you know, just to get a bit more organized) and what do I hear? "What do they call this - nesting?" I reply, "No, I think they call it cleaning up one's office". I'm pretty funny for a pregnant lady, donchathink?

I've been feeling pretty well and take walks religiously around lunch time every day...weather permitting. Because I am not yet showing, I don't exactly feel pregnant. I actually have to read the "week-by-week" books and have a look at my ultrasound pictures to remind myself. As a result, I totally forget to sleep on my side at night. I wake up every couple hours to find myself - you guessed it - flat on my belly. I better get a body pillow for a little assistance.

My adorable little fetus is busy with thumb sucking, toe wiggling, and (not so cute but equally amazing) making urine and breathing amniotic fluid as the liver, kidneys and spleen continue to develop. Lanugo (thin, downy hair) is growing all over the body for warmth.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Week 13

Almost out of the first trimester. Oh joy! I'm really looking forward to the coming weeks...especially those where I will begin to show. Its really kind of nice being able to keep the secret though :) I'm just a tad annoyed that I was told by my boss that he would be attending a work conference in my place b/c of my "condition"? Mmm...I'm pregnant. Not Typhoid Mary. Ugh.

Baby is forming teeth and vocal cords... savor this, their non-functional phase. Baby is approaching normal proportions, with a head now only one third the size of the body. Intestines are in the process of moving from the umbilical cord to baby's tummy. (Much more convenient.)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Week 12: Bring in the Trumpets!

Well, even though I vowed to hold onto my little secret until the fifth month, the ol' belly is saying otherwise! I'm still wearing regular clothing, but I do have to push the waistband down a little further after a meal. I've submitted my post-partum work from home proposal so the hope is that it is approved and I can have a relaxing pregnancy from here on out. I'm not typically a planner, but I want to make sure all my ducks are in a row before our little duckie comes along :)

What baby is doing:

As you move into the second trimester, baby shifts into the growth and maturation stage. After weeks in the critical development stage, almost all of baby's systems are fully formed.

Belly Pic:

Sunday, June 21, 2009

NT Scan Results

Things are looking good. Before the test, a woman in my age group has a 1 in 650 chance of having a neural tube defect. After the test, my individual risk went down to 1 in 8,600 or so. Let's hope everything continues to run as smoothly as they have so far!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Week 11: Being Able to Stay Awake is Heaven

Our little one is the size of a lime. Reminds me of margaritas...

We're chugging right along. Big D has been making me smoothies and all is right with the world. I plan on telling the bossman soon because I'd really like to get my post-partum plan ready. KnowwhatImean?

I've got my NT Scan next week. Its a first trimester Down Syndrome test that many mothers have done. And many don't. Its a controversial test because some parents opt for termination if the test shows a high risk. I know more people who opted out of the test than people who actually took it. I'm in the latter category. I definitely want to know.

What baby is up to...

Your fetus currently enjoys a 1:1 ratio between body and head, and has skin so transparent that blood vessels show right through. But, fingers and toes are no longer webbed, and hair follicles, tooth buds and nail beds are forming -- setting up a significantly more attractive future.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Our Second Appointment

...was yesterday and the doctor said everything looked great!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Week 10: Let's Try this Again

For the last week, I've been suffering from dull headaches. These frequently follow naps and a full night's rest. I figured out that these are the same types of headaches that always preceded a high-school dance, a college mid-term, a law school final or a bar exam day. The solution: my trusty upper retainer. So, instead of clenching my teeth, essentially grinding enamel on enamel, its enamel and hard plastic. Works wonders. I really need to stop reading these pregnancy books.

I changed my pre-natal vitamins once my sample pack ran out...who wants to pay $50/month for something the dr. said I could buy OTC? That's exactly what I did. Except, I hurled as soon as that bad boy hit my belly. I'll try again tomorrow.

Tomorrow, we have our second appointment with the OB so we're very excited. Actually, I've got to get going so I can write down my questions for the doc. Big D is so cute. He's reading his daddy-to-be book. Precious.

P.S. The fetus reference photo is creepy this week. Seriously.

What baby is up to: With bones and cartilage starting to form and vital organs beginning to function, baby is making major progress. Body length will almost double in the next three weeks, and arm joints are now working. (Soon, legs will too.)

Belly Pic:

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Week 9: Feelin' Fine. Well, not really.

This week, I've made a smoothie for myself and Dan almost everyday. I love bananas, red fruits and green grapes. The green grapes have been my best friend for a few weeks now, actually. Though they make my tummy hurt and sometimes give a combo pucky/heartburny feeling.

And of course I've been having nightmares that something will happen with the baby. Reading the pregnancy books doesn't help. I've decided to back away slowly from the books and think more about what my next meal will be. A crisp romaine and avocado salad is sounding pretty damn delicious right about now.

What Baby is up to: Your little embryo has now officially graduated to fetus-hood. Adding to the excitement, a Doppler ultrasound device might be able to pick up the beating heart. With basic physical structures in place and increasingly distinct facial features, baby is kind of starting to look like... well... a baby!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Week 8: Let Them Eat Wheat

My stomach is so bloated that it reminds me of my Monday morning beer belly in college. I'm positive I can't be showing yet because the little guy is only the size of a raspberry/small strawberry. That fat belly...that's all mama.

Shredded wheat is my food du jour (I don't know how to say week in French, so Day is it. You know what I mean though) and I'm gagging right now thinking of the quart of milk I've had this last week. Its just not right. I hate milk...but for the last two weeks, only ice cold milk, shredded wheat and fresh, red fruit (yes, just like the size reference above. weird.) will do.

Oh, and I've become one of the wackos who owns a fetal heart monitor. I got a $750 model on craigslist for $100!! Talk about a steal. Too bad my sister looked at me and D like we were Tom and Katie when we whipped it out for an impromptu heartbeat listening session. This thing is awesome. I wonder if my doctor would be pissed that we have it. I hear that some of them discourage their use since parents may freak out the one time they can't pick up a heartbeat. Let's throw caution to the wind, shall we?! Its worked everytime for us...even though we are technically at the very earliest stage where the monitor works. This dude/tte has a STRONG little pumper!

What Baby is up to: Your baby is growing like mad, putting on about a millimeter every day and continuing to straighten out in the trunk. Though you can't feel it yet, baby is moving those little arms, legs and (now only slightly) webbed fingers and toes like crazy.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Week 7: Adventures in Napping

Well, I definitely require a 20 minute nap every day at around 11:00 am. One day when I woke up and went to the office kitchen to get my dose of green tea, the secretary asked me if I hurt myself. She pointed to a dotted bruise on the side of my face. I ran to the bathroom to see what calamity had befallen me, I realized it was the impression from my green stone yoga bracelet. I was basically advertising to the world that I had my face down long enough on my desk to leave a silly putty-like print. Great. To avoid the sweater or bracelet lines etched in my face resulting from my little snooze, I've found that my black quilted leather jacket makes a fine bedfellow. Its really forgiving...and best of all, leaves no imprint!

What Baby is up to: Baby's brain -- both hemispheres! -- is growing fast, generating about 100 new cells every minute. Arms and legs are emerging as joints start to form, and a permanent set of kidneys (baby's third!) is now in place.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Hi Ho Hi Ho...

At work with D while he writes three motions he was assigned Friday afternoon. Poor fella. At least I get to catch up on my "Nesting" i.e. reading about others' troubles in paradise and watching board posters give mostly well-intentioned, usually bad advice. Hey, its better than Maury.Hey, its better than Maury.

Friday, May 15, 2009

A Weighty Issue

A very fresh, very large fruit salad is looking pretty refreshing in my head right about now. I've been working on a list of ingredients in my head. Is it possible for me to become even more obsessed with food? Not likely. I loved food before I became pregnant. Unfortunately, I will be bidding my favorite food, the majestic blue crab, adieu for now. Thinking of cooked shellfish is making me ill. I never thought it'd come to this.

On the food topic...my girlfriend gained a significant amount of weight during her pregnancy and she has warned me to be careful about packing on too much weight when I become pregnant (little did she know that I was already expecting when she dished out this little nugget of advice). She immediately dropped 30 pounds post-partum and I think she looks great. She still has about 40-50 to go (according to her, at least) and it got me thinking.

I have always been pretty conscious about what I eat. I avoid carbs like the plague, save for a slice of wheat bread here or there) and try to work out at least three times a week. We all know that doesn't always happen but now that I'm pg, I feel like I need to kick it up a notch. I am therefore making the promise right here, right now people, that I will NOT eat with reckless abandon and blame it on the baby. No, the baby does not need Ring Dings and Ho-Hos. The baby doesn't need that delicious piece of tiramisu staring at me from the window of the Italian bakery, cold with condensation. Mom wants all of those things and she's too afraid to admit that she just wants to indulge her sweet tooth. This may be more difficult than it sounds now, but I promise you baby that I will not go nuts in the Entemann's Outlet and blame it on you. I will find some other way to justify the extra 1,500 calories that day. I swear.

I'll wait until you're a little older and I'll blame it on the fact that all Drake's Cakes need to be tasted for possible contamination before you have one as a treat.

Thursday, May 14, 2009


I've decided that I will eat a half bologna, white American cheese and miracle whip sandwich on wheat every day until I deliver. I normally hate sandwiches, but I'll add it into the rotation until I find something more interesting.

My sister somehow thinks I'm not as excited as I should be. I am excited! I just choose to play out this excitement by reading all pregnancy-related materials I can get my hands on. I also secretly don't want to be one of those people who talks about The Baby every.five.seconds.

Oh, and I will be taking a hard line against anyone inviting me to whine or commiserate about every pregnancy symptom. Its a pregnancy, people, not Ebola. Get your portable plastic garbage pail, your Tums, and keep it moving.

P.S. Just found our bologna (or any cold deli meat) is a pregnancy no-no. Unless its heated until steaming to kill any bacteria. Gross. Looks like its going to be cheese and avocado sandwiches from here on out.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A Picture's Worth a Thousand Words...

I called my mom to ask her if she saw the picture I sent via e-mail and she said the blue crabs looked great and it looks like we had fun. Um. That's it? She didn't catch on until Mouth of the South printed out the e-mail and faxed it to mom's job (apparently, the print was too tiny for the sweet lady to read!)

Of course, my sister Itoldyouso'd me. See, this is why I had to tell so soon in the first place...those two were grilling me about it the whole time. My mother even tried to adjust my shirt and skirt when we took her out to dinner on Mother's Day. I have to admit that it irritated me a bit when she did that (who's not sensitive when they are bloated...I just came from a weekend spent walking around Baltimore in 85 degree weather.)

I was happy I spilled the beans though. They are ecstatic!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Let the Party Begin...

We got up early and found a prime parking spot right in front of the hospital (thanks to my planning ahead on a parking site). Once inside, the dr. asked if we had any questions. We didn't really. We're newbies to this so we really had all the questions in the world but no specific ones at the same time.

We went into the small examination room for the ultrasound. We see the sac, the small white spec...and to our complete surprise, we hear the heartbeat! The look in the The Big Fella's eyes was priceless. I think I saw a tear.

Of course, D wanted to tell everyone right away. Hearing the heartbeat made him proud and he was bursting to tell someone. We made a deal to tell my mom and sister, and his dad and brother and sister.

That night, I created a 5x7 card in photoshop to send as an e-mail to my mother and sister to share the news.

Week 6: Is that what I think it is?

We heard the heartbeat today! Its funny because the doctor says he tells people to expect to hear it first around seven weeks at the earliest! Since I knew the date of conception, the age of our little one is right on the mark. I wasn't expecting to hear it so imagine me and D's surprise when the doctor flipped the switch and we heard that rapid, unmistakable sound of life. I saw a tear in the big fella's eye. I'll never forget it. We were so happy.

Too bad I had to go to work immediately thereafter. Sucks.

What Baby is up to: Growing like crazy, baby is starting to sprout eyes, ears, nose, cheeks and chin. Those little hands and feet- still webbed like paddles- might wiggle by week's end, the heart is beating (almost twice as fast as yours!), and blood is starting to circulate.
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