Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Making a Baby: Week 16

Well, well, well. Here we are, four months pregnant.

Let's do a little pregnancy symptom review, shall we? 

1. The sad. Duuude. I have cried more in the past two months than in the past two years, which, admittedly, isn't much, but I'm not a crier. I'm usually a cusser.

Two times the tears were related to crappy crap that was going on. Stuff that I would probably have gotten angry about pre-pregnancy; instead, I laid my pregnant self on my bed and blubbered.

The other two times were related to my changing appearance. Once because it was all just starting and I had this realization that things, they were about to get real in the biznatch. The second time because I was not so kindly pointing out my belly and R basically told me I would "have to get used to it." He didn't say it in an unkindly manner. And, I'm sure, to his mind it made perfect sense. After all,  I've seen pregnant women. I knew that I would be growing a whole baby in me and that meant belly. BUT, to my hormone addled mind it came out something like this: you are going to get huge and there is nothing you can do about it so stop complaining. My poor husband then rubbed my back in a daze because I was leaking tears trying, unsuccessfully, not to let out great big sobs.

2. The hungry. Basically, I need to eat twenty times a day just to live. My stomach will literally growl while I am eating. If anyone says anything about how I'm going to regret all this eating after the baby comes, I will smile politely, dunk them in chocolate, and devour their head.

(Besides, my doctor's scale confirmed that, as of yesterday, I've only gained 3 pounds.)

3. The aching. My boobs occasionally stab me from the inside. My sciatic nerve has made its presence known. My stomach muscles are being stretched and pulled. Round ligament pain. And you know that unpleasant feeling you get if you poke yourself in your belly button*? Yeah, I've had that feeling radiating up my whole torso for minutes at a time.

*I'm not sure if people with outies get that feeling. I'm guessing not. So let me try to describe it for you: a bit like having the nerve that runs between your belly button and your groin plucked gently by jumper cables.

4. The acne. After the initial bit of acne on my face, my complexion has cleared up nicely. All that acne has migrated to my shoulders and my back, as described via my recent conversation with R:

Me: I have pimples on my shoulders.

R: Yeah? 

Me: Isn't that where boys get pimples during puberty?

R: Yes it is.

Me: So...I'm getting adolescent boy zits?

R: It's not so bad.

Me: It wouldn't be so bad if I was 13 and had a penis.

5. The quickening. HaHa all over you pregnancy! Finally something that doesn't suck. Starting at the beginning of Week 15 I have occasionally felt the baby move! It's very, very, very faint and I can only feel it if I'm laying down and not moving BUT it's there.

This is how I described it to R:
You know when you are staring down into water and suddenly, out of the darkness, a string of bubbles rises to the surface? That's what it feels like, but its happening in my uterus instead of a lake.

6. The hair. All my hair is growing crazy fast. Some women might like this. However, my hair has always grown fast, and it's crazy thick, and now I have to cut my hair ALL THE TIME. Also, I'm kind of a freak about shaving my legs...unless I'm camping I shave every day. [Keep your comments to yourself. I admitted I'm a freak.] I'm starting to feel like shaving once a day isn't enough. But I'm totally not motivated enough to do it twice in one day so I just brood angrily whenever leg stubble rubs against my pants.

7. The growth. If you compare my belly pics across the weeks so far, you will notice that the belly is definitely present. You may also notice that my boobs are trying to take over my torso. I have to wear a bra all the time - including during sleep. This does symptom #4 no good. Also, take it easy boobs! We have 5 more months to go and at this rate you are going to suffocate me!

8. The libido. I've mentioned this before. The libido is like a body snatcher, trying to wrestle away control of my consciousness. My poor, tired husband.

9. The ennui  I'm one of those people who is always doing something: cooking, painting, drawing, reading, etc. Except now I'm like ehhh. What's up with that?

10. The preparing. The only thing I seem to be interested in is getting stuff for the baby (Etsy loves me). Or researching stuff for the baby (e.g., strollers, car seats, cribs, etc.).  That part makes sense.

Okay, and now to wrap up with a picture of my ballooning self from last week:
Week 15.

Monday, December 17, 2012

How I Eat Cereal

Often, I avoid having tasty cereal in the house (especially Honey Bunches of Oats, which I'm pretty sure they sprinkle with a secret addictive compound) because of this reason:

I pour cereal into a bowl and then pour milk over it. I eat the cereal and am left with a significant portion of milk in the bowl. I'll fix that, I think, as I pour in more cereal. But, apparently, I am horrible with estimations. 

NOW the cereal to milk ratio is all off. I need more milk. 

Once I am pleased with the cereal/milk proportions, I eat the cereal. But what is this? I have so much milk left in the bowl! This cannot stand!

Quick! Get the cereal!

Repeat until stomach is close to bursting or all the cereal has been consumed. Nom nom nom.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Making a Baby: Week 15

Hello fabulous people of the Internet. I bring tidings of Joy and Happiness and blah blah blah.

I've just spent the last few hours scrubbing toilets and doing laundry and writing out fifty bajillion holiday cards (okay, so there were 17 cards but it's more satisfying to write how many it felt like). I'm feeling cranky and bloated and my belly is bigger every day.

Back in the day (the day being before I was actually pregnant), I had delusions that I would be able to just wear my baggy clothes through pregnancy. HA! I'm not even half way along and my loose sweaters fail to hide my protruding belly. I am enormous. Bring me ice cream. Actually, make that chocolate covered cherries; surely there are still some out there somewhere that I haven't scarfed down.

Okay, I exaggerate. I only ate half the world's supply of chocolate covered cherries. I split them with Oprah.*

*I have no idea why I said Oprah. She just seems like the type to appreciate a good chocolate covered cherry.

Anyway, as promised, here is a picture of my growing belly from last week:

Week 14.

Not enormous, you say? Well, just wait until I post Week 15's picture. A lot can change in a week. And yes, I know that this is nothing. On occasion, I Google 'pregnant belly week 36' or 'week 38' and then I freak the fuck out. 

As for Week 15, pregnancy is rolling right along. I'm starting to get aches in my lower belly as true expansion sets in. I am looking into prenatal yoga and pregnancy classes. I am outgrowing most of my bras. You know, the usual.

The husband continues to be adorably excited. That definitely helps my mood (take note of that men!). This morning, I walked into the kitchen and was greeted with, "Look how pregnant my wife is!" Followed by belly rubbing and general giddiness. 

And on that high note, I am going to go downstairs and start wrapping some more presents.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Fa La La La LaAAHH!

It's that time of year again. Time to evaluate your life and be thankful for what you have. My life has been fairly easy - not born into wealth easy, mind you, but it could certainly have been worse.

My family had little money, but I did still have a family. It wasn't perfect and it wasn't always peaceful, but we had a house to live in and food to eat. We learned to ask for little and be happy with what we had. That was harder to do in my teen years, but then again what isn't harder during adolescence? Adolescence needs punched in the face, but I digress.

I made some very poor choices early on in my romantic life. I allowed myself to be treated badly and I internalized that treatment. BUT, and here's the fabulous part, I actually learned from my mistakes. I'm not bragging. It literally took years of repeat lessons before I caught on. However, I found a great guy who is kind, moral-minded, and honest. I married him and we've been living happily ever after.

I used some of my basic character flaws (specifically stubbornness and a jaw-dropping ability to get over things) to my advantage. I refused to give in and I kept going against a number of personal indignities and I got my PhD. My adviser, Dr. D., is a real piece of shit work. He does have his good points, they are just hard to find under all the conceit, narcissism, unanticipated temper tantrums, and creepy sexual soliloquies. But I soldiered on, reminding myself that I would gain the most satisfaction in succeeding despite him. It took years for me to let go of (most) resent and hostility that I feel toward that man. Yet I think I'm finally in a place where I could smile in his face rather than using my fist. Sometimes that feels better. Like that time I met my husband's ex, the one who had cheated on him and basically stomped on his heart, and rather than acting catty, I was SO nice. She was completely confused. My husband still laughs about it.*

*That's a tip kids. Confuse your enemies with kindness.

I would never consider myself to be wise, neither would anyone who knows me, but I have learned a lot. These are the important things:
  • Some things cannot be changed. 
  • Work hard to remember why the people you love in your life are special and treat them accordingly.
  • Just because something is true does not mean it has to be said. If it is going to hurt someone, even if it feels justified, decide if you want to be responsible for that wound.
  • Being the bigger person rarely feels good but it often means you can put the problem behind you.
  • Find reasons to laugh. Often.
  • Own up to your mistakes.
  • Go outside.
  • Share your good fortune with those who need it: your money, your time, your talents, etc.
There. I think I've drained all the holiday-Sunday-afternoon-TV-special right out of me. 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

What the Holiday What??

Okay, I'll admit that I must have had my head buried in the sand, or, more likely, books. But, and this is totally true, until two days ago I had never heard of the Elf on the Shelf. The first time I came across it, I largely ignored it, but then it was mentioned in another blogpost I was reading; then another and another, until I had to find out what everyone was talking about.

It turns out that the Elf on the Shelf phenomenon is a marketing scheme to exploit the myth of Santa Clause for corporate gains and to drive many parents bat-shit crazy. You see, first you have to buy a special Elf on the Shelf, which is a spy sent by Santa to infiltrate the homes of suburban children everywhere. The elf is magic, obviously, and so you can't touch him. But you know that he's being a good little spy because every morning he has moved to a new place in the house (thus, parents have to move the elf every night because lying to children and making it look like Santa ate some cookies one night a year was just not enough). And children can be sure it was the elf moving independently because no one can touch him - he's magic.

First of all, I don't hate Santa...though I do have my own internal ethical debates about lying to my someday children about him. Anyway, more to the point, this is a brilliant marketing scheme. As far as schemes go, this is the schemiest scheme I've ever come across! Not only does the elf freak your kid into being especially good because of an implied, or maybe explicit?, threat (why parents like it), but you know that all the kids with elves go to school and tell their friends, who then come home and ask for an elf of their very own to spy on them. It becomes self-perpetuating! No wonder I've never heard of this. They don't even NEED to advertise (that, or my lack of television and interest in said books has once again kept me from valuable cultural updates like shelf elfs and who Kim Kardashian is marrying/dating this week).

ANYWAY, I'll cut my rambling short and end with this. These elves are creepy, it kinda seems like work for parents, and, again, creepy.

I watch you in your sleep...possibly while touching myself (source).

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Making a Baby: Week 14

Remember WAY back when I said I would post a picture of my 13 week baby bump?  But I had left my camera in Tacoma and had to get my husband to take a pic on his phone, but first I had to get up the ovaries to let him take the pic, then I had to get that pic from him, and basically getting this photo to you was a quest of epic proportions. So here it is [duh duh duh daaaaa!]:

13 Weeks along: I am literally barefoot and pregnant.

And yes, those are maternity pants. I bought them before our trip to Tacoma because a 6 hour car ride in regular pants was not happening. Besides, wearing your husband's shirt and a pair of maternity pants is the height of fashion...just take my word for it. No need to ask anyone else.

SO, that's my emerging belly. It is even bigger now...but you will have to wait until after Friday to see that, because my husband has declared Friday to be picture day.

Week 14 has been unremarkable, unless you take into account the porno sex...which I won't mention because SHEESH, boundaries.

OH, also our prenatal screening results came back and everything is fine! I have broken The News to my boss and have had my plan to take off most of the summer OK'd. Fortunately, my work is pretty cool about that.

One final thing I'd like to share: R has been placing his head to my belly and calling, "Hello in there!" Adorable. I think I'll keep him.