Thursday, August 28, 2014


So, strange dreams are a common symptom of pregnancy...or so I've heard.  But man!  The one I had last night has got to be off the charts CUH-RAZY. 

And for your reading pleasure, I will share:

It started out normal enough...I was feeling my stomach while Ziggy was moving around and I found his head. (That was the only normal part). 

When I did he lifted it a bit and you could kind of see the shape of it protruding from my abdomen.

I called out to JT to come look.  "His head, babe!  Look you can see his head!"

As JT came running to see, baby lifted his head even much so that I had two bumps on my stomach...the normal pregnant one, and a well-defined-baby-head-shaped bump on top of that one down near my right leg.

JT gasped, then exclaimed, "He's ugly!"

"What?!" I said, "He can't be!  He's our baby!"

The little guy had lifted his head so much that my skin was stretched tightly around his facial features.  Problem was, I couldn't see much more than the back of his head because his face was pointing down.  I craned my neck for a better look...

"He's not..." I started, but then I too gasped.  "You're right!  He's ugly!" 

Ziggy started pushing his whole body...outward.  Slowly little fingers, knees, elbows, and toes were visible under my taught skin.  He just kept pushing more and more until...he just...emerged from my stomach and was no longer under layers of skin.  I feel like there is some image from a movie I could compare this too, but am having trouble placing it.  Like a ghost going through a wall?  But not that easy.  It wasn't creepy or anything like Alien.  It wasn't like my skin split...he just was under it...and then he wasn't.  He kind of bubbled apart from it...not unlike a lava lamp.  You know when a clump of "lava" starts to separate and eventually is two bubbles?  If I had to attach an onomatopoeia to it, it would be "BLUB."

BLUB...and he was out.

As soon as he was out he started smiling and wiggling and was immediately cute and wonderful and I held him on my chest.  I held him for a minute...just full of love and not at all phased by how he had come to be in my arms.

But after a short time, we all (baby included) decided he better go back in because he wasn't done. 

For whatever reason, going back the way he had come was not even an wasn't even a thought.  Instead...

The little bugger got up, assumed a diving position with hands above head and lunged at...well...the NORMAL exit route babies take.  I did one hellofa Kegel trying to block his re-entry.

"He's not going to fit that way!" I yelped.

JT said something like, "You've got to relax and let him back in."

I tried to relax, but every time he dove, I'd block him (unintentionally).  Like when your tongue fights a pill you just don't want to swallow.

Eventually he got back up that "Egg in a Bottle" science demonstration.

But then he was breech.

The end.

That was it!  That was my crazy dream.  Anyone care to analyze???       

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

What's Crackin'?

Remember back in January when I was so "eggcited" to have ovulated for the first time in who-knows-how-long?  AND THEN, to find out I was pregnant blew my mind!  But it wasn't long at all before I started worrying that something would go awry and my little miracle egg would "hatch" too soon...
Don't worry...nothing has happened.  Ziggy is safe and growing in his "shell."

I have tried to stay calm and positive. For the most part, I've done a good job.  Having a rather uneventful pregnancy has helped immensely, and for that I am sooo grateful!  I get that I am beyond lucky for how smoothly things have gone...I know there are many who, after the stress of IF, have to face extremely stressful (sometimes terrifying) pregnancies...some that have happy endings and others that only end in more heartbreak.  With each passing week it seems I have more and more reason to believe that everything will turn out just fine and I have no need to stress. 
In the past two weeks though I have had a few brief moments of ill-founded panic...that we are so close to term, but darn it baby, don't get any crazy ideas!  I am sure that there is some naïve, first-time mom stuff at play and my worry is unwarranted...but you know when you just get a feeling that something isn't right?
So, I've had Braxton Hicks contractions daily since early in the second trimester.  Early on I would say I got about a dozen each day.  Though my doctor said it was completely normal and okay as long as I wasn't having too many (4 every hour), they didn't hurt, and they weren't accompanied by bleeding/fluid, I was still a little unnerved that I was getting them so much earlier than what everything I was reading said. 
Over the course of the pregnancy the intensity and frequency of the contractions has been building.  Still not to the "too many" or painful level, but I would say I have at least one an hour and they last any where from 2 to 5 minutes a piece.  Before they were pretty localized; now they seem to start out in one or two places but spread to most areas of my uterus.  I have spoken with my doctor about them at every check-up and am always told not too worry, to call if I have 4 an hour "consistently", to lie down on my side, rest, hydrate, etc.
Anyhow, 2 weeks ago I witnessed my grandma fall and break her femur.  It was scary seeing her on the ground in the state she was in and not knowing what exactly was wrong.  I think the stress of the situation took its toll and I hit the "4 an hour" contraction mark.  I rested and drank my water and tried to take it easy the rest of the day.  I had lots of contractions that day...but only had the one hour with 4.  Then again this past weekend...not sure what might have triggered it...but I had another hour with 4.
Now I know I am not in labor...but my concerns are: 1.) Are these contractions a sign that my body is getting ready to go into labor sooner than 4-6 weeks from now?  2.) Why are they so much longer and more frequent that what is written in all the books?  Could they be stressing out my baby?, and 3.) If I am having this many now...what happens when I go back to work next week?
I had another appointment today and voiced my concerns.  I was told basically all the same things as before, so I am thinking I need to just chill...but I can't shake the feeling that this baby might come sooner than we are expecting.  (Now, just because I said that, watch this naïve first-timer be begging her little one to GET OUT at 41 weeks or something). BTW, baby's heart rate (140), my blood pressure (118/70), and fundal measurement (34cm) were all great & right on track. Weight gain is 28 pounds, and I think that is good too...nobody at the doctor's office has said anything about it anyway.
I am 34 weeks tomorrow, so I know I am at a point where Ziggy would probably be okay...but each day and week he can stay put, so much the better!  At my next appointment they will start checking my cervix and I think knowing what's going on there will help.  I just really want a healthy baby and want to do everything in my power to make that happen! So baby, do mommy a surprises please!
Alright, enough with my most recent is a random list of things that have been going on since I last updated:
*I had my baby shower (on the same day that my grandma fell). Lots of wonderful people came and brought me lots of wonderful things. But it was also kind of weird because the whole day was weird with grandma being in the hospital and all.
*JT and I went to an all-day birthing class.  We had to go with the all-day option since JT is only home on weekends.  And no, we didn't have to sit on the floor and practice breathing techniques.  I am glad we went, but feel like I knew most of what they told us because I have been reading books.  I was glad for JT to hear it all though and it got me more excited for the "birth day."  Again, some naivety here...but is it weird that I am excited about labor/delivery?  There are some horrible, gruesome tales out there about during and after labor...but I'm not scared...I am just curious.  And sooo excited to experience it and meet our little man!  
*Side story about the class:  The instructor asked the men right at the beginning "What has been the best thing about your woman being pregnant?"  (She kept saying that throughout the class..."your woman"...I didn't really dig it).  One guy said, "mood swings."  Not a great start.  He thought she had said "worst thing" and then tried to redeem himself quickly with some other comment that was not much better.  Another guy said, "Just the fact that it finally happened because we've been trying so long."  I wanted to hug that couple and scream "YAY!!" The other four men in the room (my husband included) said NOTHING!  What?!  It was a Ferris Buehler could almost hear crickets chirping as the instructor pleaded, "You can't think of one wonderful thing? Anyone? One thing? Let me help you: try...she's growing my baby, she's beautiful, she's glowing, she's wonderful...anything!  Anyone?"  I can think of a million wonderful things about being pregnant: the heartbeat, the ultrasounds, the kicks and squirms, preparing the nursery, daydreaming about the future, smiles from strangers, belly rubs and kisses from JT, the list goes on!  So, during the lunch break I had to give JT a hard time and ask why he didn't say anything and could he really not come up with one thing or did he just not feel like talking?  His response, "I didn't think it was appropriate to talk about your boobs."     
*School starts next week.  Teachers have meetings all day on Tuesday and back-to-school night that evening.  Kids come on Wednesday.  I have been spending lots of time at school.  I guess I am ready-ish...but I really don't want to go back.  Seriously lacking motivation.  Lacking so much motivation I don't even want to talk it about it right now.  So I won't.
*I've been trying to find child care for when I return to work in January.  It's hard, man!  Maybe I'll do a post on that later.  The good news is that I think I finally found some decent options.
Alright, that's all I've got for now. 'Til next time...

Monday, August 11, 2014

Just Photos

I don't have much to say today, but thought I would share the past month worth of belly pictures.  Some people (strangers and friends alike) say I look small...some say I look big (remember the custodian that lacks social awareness?? I saw her the other day and she said, "You so huge already? What you eat?")...and the doctor always says we are growing perfectly.  Obviously I just want to be "normal," whatever that is, so the doctor's assessment works for me.  I go back tomorrow for an appointment and hope that all will appear "perfectly normal" again!
28 weeks

29 weeks

30 weeks

31 weeks!
Can't believe I am in my 31st week of this pregnancy! How lucky am I??  Just for is my 15 week belly when I thought it was COMPLETELY obvious that I was pregnant.  Ha!


Friday, August 8, 2014

Beautiful Things

So, I was at Kohl's today getting a cushion for the rocking chair in Ziggy's room and this guy was looking at pillows.  I would say he was a surfer-type if there were anywhere to surf around here, but since there is not I guess he was just sort of a hippy...long hair, flip-flops, exuding a very mellow vibe. 

I knew what I was going for and exactly where to find it, so I was on a mission.  I didn't really want to get distracted and shop for anything else.  My tunnel vision was zeroed in on the quickest route to the seat cushions.  As I passed this guy, he looked up and said "beautiful" with a kind smile and a nod toward my belly.  It caught me a little off-guard...but I managed to smile quickly and say "thank you."

As I walked on to my destination I got to thinking how "un-beautiful" I was hair was up in a messy ponytail thanks to my water-exercise class and sweaty nap.  My make-up was a bit smudged and my clothes were ones I had worn the day before and just threw on again since I was going out in public.  I knew I'd be out working in the yard later and so I was waiting to shower until after that.  I think I am starting to waddle a bit and my skin is getting weird little spots of funny pigmentation.  My legs (and other parts) swell as the day progresses.  Basically, I felt dirty and sweaty and large and quite the opposite of beautiful.
But he said "beautiful."  And you know what folks?  He was right.  What is happening inside of me is undeniably beautiful even if the outside doesn't always feel like it matches...and I reckon that is what he saw.  It wasn't that I looked beautiful, but that I was beautiful.

It's funny how this complete stranger made my day with one word.  And it's not like it's a word I've never heard before.  My husband tells me all the time how beautiful I am, but of course he thinks so!  I mean, we love each other like crazy!  There was just something different about hearing it from a stranger at such an unexpected moment. 

This guy struck me as the type of person who might find beauty in a lot of places that go unnoticed by others as we set our sights on our missions for the day or week or months ahead of us.  How much beauty are we missing out on when we have our blinders on???

So, in an attempt to honor the beauty in the simple things around us, allow me to share a list of some of my favorite things.  

Favorite Smells:
*Dry, dead pine needles and dirt on a hot day
*My husband's t-shirts
*Hometown air after being away for awhile

Favorite Sounds:
*Heavy rain on a metal roof
*Wind chimes at the lake
*My husband singing country songs when he thinks no one is listening

Favorite Sights:
*The vibrant greens set against the purply-grey dustiness of an oncoming storm
*Fall leaves before they fall
*Fresh snow, especially when it hangs on to branches

Favorite Tastes: (this one is tough because I LOVE to eat and my favorite things to eat change throughout the year)
*cold water when you are really, really thirsty
*Almost any food I eat while on a date with JT
*Sour gummy worms

Favorite "Feels"?:
*Ziggy moving inside when JT has his hand or cheek against my belly
*A warm bath or shower after a long day...especially if it was a day of traveling
*Clean feet
*Getting in a freshly made bed with clean sheets
*The very beginning of a run on a mild day and the end (when you get to stop) of every run 

If I sat and thought longer about each category, I know my lists would grow.  But these are the things that come immediately to mind. This has been kind of a sappy post...but there really is a lot of wonderful in the world and I suppose this blog was due for a touch of it. 

Where do you find beauty?  What are some of your favorite things?

Monday, August 4, 2014

I Want to Barf

Seriously.  I think I want to barf.
I have a lot going on in the, so I decided to plot it all out on a dry erase calendar that I haven't used since college.  Side note: I NEED to get a real calendar this year...I am getting too old and/or too pregnant to try to keep all this info in my head and on random sticky notes.  Another side note: I found a little desk-top calendar for work last year that went from August-July.  That's what I want!  Not the January to December new year always starts in August/September. 
Annnnyway....I plotted out all the appointments and commitments on the calendar and guess what??  School starts in 4 weeks. 
I want to barf.
"Back to School" is everywhere you look!  All the teacher bloggers are going nuts with back to school ideas and normally I think it would kind of get me excited.  I would be all over their blogs getting inspired (and maybe jealous) and ooohing and aaahing and making lists.  Normally I like getting ready for a new school year...I like thinking of new ideas to try and organizing and decorating the classroom.  I get excited about possibilities and a fresh start.  It's one of the things I love most about being a teacher.  There is always an end and a beginning...always a chance to try again.    
But this year, I want to barf. 
I am 0% excited about going back.  I know, I know.  The good news is that I don't have to be there for long.  But that's part of why it is so unappealing.  I get to go back for the hard part.  September, no matter how sweet your class matter how pregnant or not pregnant you are, kicks every teacher's butt (I think).  At least, it kicks mine every single year.
Pregnancy aside, I know from my past experience that I am going to be completely spent in the evenings and on weekends for all of September.  So I kind of feel like the beginning of school is my deadline for being ready for baby.  I don't want to have to do anything when I come home from work.  I thought 9.5 weeks sounded like not too far away...but 4!?!?!?!?
My anxiety shot through the roof today when we were plotting things out on the calendar.
When I stop and think about it though, we are ready.  Ready enough anyway.  Why does a baby need a completely organized storage room and perfectly groomed yard?  I think I have a little touch of crazy interfering with my perspective.    
I just need to breathe. 
And tell that crazy to hush up a bit.
And not barf.     

Saturday, August 2, 2014


Do you title things before or after you write them?  I'm normally a before type-of-gal myself, but have been known to go back and change a title or two after writing part or all of a post.  The title kind of gives direction and helps to focus things, don't you think?  But for this post I have no title.  Not yet. direction.  You can expect no focus here.

I am 30 weeks, 1 day pregnant.  This little man is roughly 14.5 inches and 3 lbs...according to  Can you believe it? 

I can't.  I don't know when this is all going to feel real.  I mean...I can feel that reality is approaching fast as diaper pails and play yards show up on my doorstep...and as I research product reviews of car seats and baby monitors.  But it is still hard to wrap my brain around the fact that in 10 weeks (give or take) I will meet this little person who will one day call me mom. 

I don't know if I'll ever settle into a consistent feeling before (or even after) he comes.  But then, when has life ever provided consistent feelings?  And what fun would that be?  I am excited.  I am full of anticipation.  I am overjoyed!  And I am increasingly terrified.  And doubtful that I will be able to navigate motherhood.  And then that makes me feel bad.  I love this little boy so much...but I am afraid of him.

I'm glad to be starting week 30, because week 29 just felt crummy.  It was one of those weeks where I felt like tears were only ever a minute away.  A week where I was lonely...but kind of wanted to be alone...around people.  Anybody else ever get that or should I blame pregnancy?  I didn't get to talk to JT much this week just with various things I had going on in the evenings...and it turns out that maybe that's not so good.  He's my glue. 

So far things have really been going as good as one could hope for with the long-distance-marriage business.  I've only cried a couple of times and gotten over it pretty fast.  We've been packing lots of quality time into our weekends.  But this week was a reminder that some days, some weeks, are going to be harder...and I'll have to figure out where my tape is until my glue gets back. 

I guess I'm not the only one that hit my limit this week though.  Chester (our dog) seemed to reach a breaking point.  He quite deliberately peed on JT's bag last weekend as if to say "Here's what I think of you leaving every week!"  It's like he gave him the doggy middle finger.  And I swear when JT left on Monday, Chester gave him the cold shoulder.  The next two days he was completely inconsolable...which only amplified my emotionally exhausted state and made me question my readiness for motherhood more.  WHAT DO YOU WANT?  Ball?  Treat?  Walk? WHAAAT? Nothing pacified him.  I think he just missed his dad.

On an unrelated note (I told you not to expect focus), and because I feel like I need to end this downer of a post with something positive: we bought our tile last weekend!!!!!  For the bathroom that has been torn apart for a year and a half!!!!! I am really, really hoping we can crank that bad boy out in the next 5 weeks before school and JT's academy start.

And since life is never all bad, here's a list of other positive stuff that happened this week:
  •  I got $30 cash in the mail for doing one of those TV viewing surveys!
  • I went to a water exercise class 3 times this week with a good friend from school.  I thought it might be lame and just be a bunch of old ladies, but I actually really enjoyed it.  We Zumba-ed in the pool!
  • Because of previously mentioned water exercise...I managed to get a little color without completely frying my pregnant skin in the 90+ degree weather we've been having!
  • I went to Froyo & Polka Dot Pottery with my 10 year old niece. 
  • I bought a diaper bag at my friend's Thirty-One party after agonizing WAY TOO MUCH about the color and size.  But now I'm really excited about it.
  • I ate Swedish pancakes (think crepes) basically all week and they tasted incredible every time.
  • One night Ziggy was entirely on my right side...left of my navel was squishy and deflated while right of it was hard and full of little baby lumps...I can't help but smile when he does goofy things like that.

UPDATE: JT got home this morning at 7:00.  Amazing what a little sleep and his presence can do for my mood.  Feeling SOOOOO much better today than I did last night when I wrote this!