Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Mirror

I've never been someone who stopped and looked at them self in the mirror.

I honestly don't think it's a self-esteem issue, I just always have felt confident in myself.  And I also always stood by the thought that what people saw is what they got.  So there was no make-up or worrying about hair.  I did what I needed to do and left the house for the day, and then never stopped to check what the day did to me.

Since the bump arrived, I find myself looking.  Normally just before or after a shower, looking at veins that have started appear on my breasts, looking for any discoloration, and staring at the linea negra.  This isn't an in depth search, just a scan.

And I still don't really notice too much of a change in those moments to my overall size either.  I mentioned to A that I've basically gained all the weight I lost last summer, but I don't move the same.  He reminded me that it's being carried differently, and so my body adjusts to that.  This is why I waddle.

One of the standards at home has been loose nightgowns and over sized sweatshirts when I feel cold.  My favorite sweatshirt has been in my wardrobe for years, and it's HUGE.  Everything about it, including the sleeves, is meant for a bigger person, but it's perfect for lounging around in my dumpy clothes.

Last night I craved dessert.  A specific dessert that required a drive thru at the Sonic down the street.  Since I spend my days in pajamas, the trip out the door means putting on some actual clothes.  So on came the yoga pants and the huge sweatshirt.

And at that moment, in our bedroom, I saw my profile in the long mirror over my dresser.  A full profile, fully dressed, and my jaw dropped.

Somewhere along the way, my sweatshirt stopped being as loose.  The sleeves are still huge, as you'll see below in the pic A took for me, but my stomach now fills the body, and there is no denying it in my profile picture.  I also looked down and realizes I couldn't see my toes.

You can tell how long the sweatshirt is supposed to be by looking at my backside. 

I think A was worried I would be upset with all this weight and the change in the way the clothes are fitting me.

Quite the opposite, to be truthful.

I love this.  And I love that as this picture was being taken, my son was kicking my hand.....

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

G is for Gas

I have lost control of my body's ability to control the expulsion of gas.

Between the burping and farting, and some times both at the same time, we must sound like a pair of adolescent boys with the giggling.

And yes, I still laugh at fart jokes.  For the most part, we both can't help laughing.  You know, when we aren't accusing one or the other of trying to poison the air around us.

Along with the giggles there are some moments of pain.   Pain to the point where I can't breathe, my insides feel as if they are going to explode from pressure, and I wish I could just die on the spot.

There was one night 3 weeks ago when we decided to go to the mall and do some shopping.  I waited until after an hour had passed from eating, hoping that any gas issues would have come and gone by then.

Boy was I wrong.

By the time we made it to the store I needed to go to, I could barely stand.  We managed to get back to the car, but there was no way I could drive.  I just couldn't do anything, and was in tears.

So, A called his dad.

He picked us up, stopped at the market on the way back to his house to pick up something I could take to help, and then took us to the family house to wait it out.

We were there all of 10 minutes when I belched in a way that A later described as puking air.  There really is no better way to describe the way it came rushing out, and the relief I felt after.

I've learned my lesson.  I keep pills with me at all times, and if there is barely a hint of problems I will chew one and then relax and let things happen.

Of course that hasn't stopped the nonsense when we are out and things progress without warning.

You know.  Like when you're at Target, and it's pretty empty, in the movies area.  And your husband starts walking down an aisle as you review the end cap.  Suddenly there is a loud noise coming from your rear, and you stare at each other for that split moment after when the shock has hit you of the noise.

And you calmly say, "Oh, A....really?  In the middle of the aisle?" and shake your head at him.

To which he loudly replies that there is no way he is taking the blame for THAT!

Monday, February 21, 2011

F is for Firsts

My son has become an active boy, which is a good thing since I'm supposed to make sure I feel movement daily per the Colonel.

I felt him moving for the first time in late December.  Before that, I didn't feel the movements but the ultrasounds made sure we saw he was there.

That first ultrasound in November had my husband and I laughing.  Our astonishment at the movement we saw lead to calls to each of our mothers.  They in turn laughed at us because of the reactions we had to the bouncing inside me.

Since December, the movements have been semi-regular.  But late last week, things changed a little.

Between his apparent obsession with my diaphragm and the daily rolling, there were moments with obvious kicks.  And I felt my first one and couldn't stop grinning.

Last night was another first.

He was kicking every few moments, and my hand on my stomach was feeling every tap.  I had A roll his chair over and we waited with our hands together in the spot he'd been hitting.

And he did it again.

My husband's face was the best part of the whole experience.  His eyes widened and while he was smiling at the same time he stated that was the weirdest thing he ever felt.

I had to laugh and then remind him that that was the exact same thing I'd been saying for months.  And now he got to appreciate it.

Which made him smile even more.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

E is for Ergonomics

When we moved to VA, the first furniture purchase we made was for desks. 

Due to the way our office/sun room is situated, we both ended up with corner desks.  Those, along with actual computer chairs, have made it possible to be comfortable and ergonomic.

Win win!

The recent issue has been along the lines of the actual desk set up.  Especially the positioning of my keyboard, mouse, and the phone I need for calls from work.

I stand 5'2.5", and I emphasize the extra .5" as if my life depended on it.  So while I fit perfectly at my desk, my short arms just don't reach very far.  Which is why I normally sit rolled up to the desk.

Now, imagine the changes due to the recent developments of my mid-section.

I have to have my chair pushed back.  There is no ifs, ands, or buts about that fact.  Even getting hugs from my husband have changed because of the solid mass that pushes everything else inside me out of the way when squeezed back into me.

Which means that slowly but surely I am sliding all my necessary office equipment forward on the desk.

I am running out of writing space, but have all this room behind the phone now.  And the cat is not thrilled about not being allowed on the desk to nap as I work.

It's seriously cutting into our snuggle time, and he is making it obvious that this may not be tolerated much longer....

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Tummy Touching

Since even before becoming pregnant, the bloggers I've followed have all seemed to think the same thing about people touching their pregnant bellies without asking: It's wrong.

I have to be honest when I say I had no real thoughts on the matter.  I mean, yes, it's my body and personal space.  But at the same time, I've never had the urge to touch someone's tummy, and I just never thought about it being a problem.

A pointed out to me that we really don't go out.  We are in the apartment most of the week, and when we do head out to walk, he is by my side the entire time.  Who in the world is going to go through him to try to touch me?

Not to mention that while I admit that I definitely am showing, and it's obvious when wearing the right maternity clothes, I think some people still wonder if I am pregnant or overweight.  I don't think my face has rounded out anymore than before, but there are still parts that show they have nothing to do with the small soccer ball I seem to be concealing under my shirt.

Last week I had decided that I wanted to attend church.  We made the plans, packed lunch to eat with his family after, and went to their house to go to the service.  Once we arrived, we made our way through the crowds and headed for our seats.

A's mother's family all have the same godparents.  I'm not sure where this stems from, but this couple are well known in the church, and they know everyone on his mom's side of the family.  They have been asked to stand for a couple of generations of children, and even now in their 90s attend service every Sunday.

They are honestly the sweetest couple, and they have always welcomed me with a hug and kiss.  Always.

On the way in, his godmother was standing at the door welcoming people, and immediately smiled to see us with the family.  I was last in our little line to go in and she immediately embraced me and thanked me fot the card and pictures I'd sent last month.

A's mother let her know we had chosen a name, and told her.  She immediately said that the name would be new to the family, placed her hands on my belly, and said that he would be blessed and loved and in her prayers.

I haven't stopped grinning at the obvious show of love from her, and her excitement at everything.  And I realized later that this was the first person besides myself and A to have reached out and touched our son.

And I loved every minute of it.

Monday, February 14, 2011

D is for Diabetes

Have I mentioned how happy I am to have dodged the glucose test that every pregnant woman has to go through?

And it was close during the visit at the beginning of this month. The Colonel had a momentary lapse and began to remind me of needing to take the glucose test in the next month. I mentioned, in dire hopes he was mistaken, that with the insulin I take during the day, would I take an injection before the test or should I just go as is….? He shook his head, laughed, and apologized. He got ahead of himself and said to just keep doing what we have been and watch things.

Later, A mentioned that the look on my face was priceless, and it was clear I was relieved when I was told there was no need for the actual test to occur.

Having diabetes coming into the pregnancy has honestly kept me on my toes more than anything else. I am making sure to eat every two hours, I check my blood sugar after breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and I try my hardest to watch my carbs.

The carbs have been the most interesting part of this. Finding the balance with getting fiber and some grains into my diet, while not overdoing it, has us reading labels for everything we buy. I’m not perfect, nowhere near, and I know my snacks may be a little bit of a spike, but the effort is there.

I look back of the first 24 weeks of this adventure and feel confident that everything that could be done to make sure things would work out as best as it could.

I know we aren’t out of the woods yet. There is a lot more monitoring to be done during this last stretch, and the biggest concern is that the baby will gain too much weight too fast. He gained 11 ounces between week 20 and 24, so I’m feeling good about the progress.

And again, I love the Colonel. During the last visit, he mentioned that he has never had a problem with a diabetic pregnancy and delivery, and he has no intention of starting with me.

Friday, February 11, 2011

C is for Clothing

Now that my uterus is officially on the rise, my jeans have been retired. Completely retired until at least this summer.

Remember the leggings I ordered?

I am in heaven! I’ve ordered a second pair, along with 2 pairs of yoga pants, and 2 tops. The yoga pants fit perfectly, and during the last ultrasound on the 9th I was so comfortable that I contemplated a nap.

At this point the only other things I may need are shorts. I’m due at the beginning of June, but Spring in VA does mean warmer weather. And I just don’t think I will be able to handle leggings if we get early heat and humidity.

Now, I have to be honest:

I love the new clothes because the fit right. As in nothing is falling. Everything moves with me.

And you can see the bump that I have never been so proud of before.

I mentioned to A that I love the change in my own mentality.

Last August, we went away for a vacation to Richmond. While there, for the first time ever, I bought souvenir t-shirts that fit. I was down enough weight to be able to do this, and they fit right, and my stomach was not an issue.

Now, these same shirts only accent the fact that it appears that I am trying to smuggle a cantaloupe under my clothes. It’s obvious I am growing a tummy, and unlike the fluff before, it’s hard and solid.

And I couldn’t be more thrilled to show off to the world.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

B is for Boobs

I can honestly say that from about 3 days after I ovulated in September something in my chest felt different.

And I’m not talking about maternal instinct or a faster heart beating or anything like that.

My boobs hurt.

That hurt intensified, and continued right through the end of the first trimester. Since then, they have their sore days, but nothing like at the beginning. My nipples, though, have not been given the same reprieve. And since the plan is breastfeeding, I know I am in for more if not worse later.

The most interesting part has been that my bra size hasn’t changed too much.

By mid-September, I was ready to actually head to a store and have myself measured for a correct size. My current bras were starting to feel looser than ever, and that was a great side effect of the diet we had been on since July.

When the test came back positive, I realized I’d better not. And it has worked out in my favor.

I still fit in the size I’d been wearing for a couple of years, and now fill the cups up a little more fully than I remember ever doing. Everything I’ve read indicates that the size will change again once the milk comes in, so even though I have an itch to be prepared with nursing bras, I’m holding off until we come home from the hospital and things are moving along.

We won’t be going out for a bit after bringing the little man home, so this should work. Meanwhile, I have my eyes on a couple of nursing camisoles that may do the trick for the first few days….

Monday, February 7, 2011

A is for Acne

I still remember high school and the introduction of Oxy pads to my daily routine.

At some point, acne took over and the attempts to hide it were part of life. There was the Oxy pads for cleaning. At one point some cover up which just left orangish blotches on my face. I finally stopped it all, though oily skin was something I've had to deal with ever since then.

I don't think it ever went completely away. My senior portraits were nicely airbrushed, and the reminder is in the photo badge for Grad Night that I kept. That was one of the original proofs, and seeing that makes me thank the photography studio.

The first part of the pregnancy, there was the very occasional flare up. But they disappeared with the end of the 1st trimester, and the holidays were clear.

But last month...

They are appearing with more frequency on my chin and along my hairline. The weirdest: behind my ears.

I know this is the added hormones and it will fade too. But some mornings I look in the mirror and wonder if I will ever just have my oily skin again....

Friday, February 4, 2011

Six Years Later

The week before Valentine's Day in 2005, my best friend and I came out of "hiding".

Since the Fall of 1999, I'd played online video games with a group I met on Ultima Online. We made an annual trip to Vegas each June to see each other and catch up on real life, but spent the rest of our time playing games online and chatting through headsets and voice programs on our computers.

From Ultima Online, our group moved on to Star Wars Galaxies just after it launched. We are seriously a dorky group, and had a blast playing through it.

Then in late 2004, Blizzard Entertainment launched World of Warcraft. And things changed for a little bit.

Part of the group jumped to the new game, playing with us on SWG still, but raving about this new setting. My best friend picked up the game, and loved it as well, but didn't publicly say anything about making the jump.

In mid January of 2005, I bought a copy and installed it. I tried a character, loved the beauty of the game, and told my best friend about this. She and I soon had picked a server to play on together, and were excited to adventure and be able to talk about it.

February came around, and somehow the others learned we were playing. I'm not sure how we ended up on the server we were on, but we did, all of use who currently had the game, and it was a good feeling to have them all there.

Then the next logical step came about: forming a guild for our group.

WoW requires a guild charter to be purchased, and I think it's 10 "signatures" are needed to actually create the guild. We only had seven, so the spamming of requests to find strangers willing to help us by adding their name just so we could get started began.

The missing three were found, our guild created, and then the chatting with these new people began. One dropped almost immediately, knowing he was just there for the creating, and not saying much to us. Another stayed for a bit to chat, but once he logged out was quickly ejected from the guild.

That last one stayed on for the rest of the night. He had our sense of humor, quickly caught on to our joking and flirting, and the next thing I knew there was talking of offering a gold piece for a lap dance. I still remember laughing and sending private messages to my best friend about all this.

When he left for the night because it was late for him on the East Coast, we chatted and agreed to leave him in the group.

His character and mine became inseparable. We quested and leveled together nightly, a few days later were chatting on AIM, then a month later spending hours together on the phone.

Three months after that night, he visited me on the other side of the US and spent 10 days with me. We talked and laughed and played games together. His going home was a rough time at the airport, but after that trip we talked even more. He referred to my apartment as home, and missed me and the people he had met on the other side of the country.

After losing his job in July, and not having luck finding anything, a trip back out to visit was suggested. Neither of us had the money, and out of the blue my mom offered to fly him out as my Christmas present from her.

He missed his flight home two weeks after arriving, and we haven't been apart since then.

Six years later, we are married and expecting a son. I love him more now than I did then.

So to my husband, thank you for the last six years and for taking a chance on CA and me.

And mom, thanks for the best Christmas present ever!!!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Could That Be....?

The leggings arrived and I am in heaven.

I never thought having pants that didn't rest on my waist could feel this good.

But the most interesting thing is that I went to look in the mirror to make sure they didn't fit too tightly and noticed that I have a belly.

A noticeable belly

Then I looked down and realized I couldn't see my feet....

There were some nights of cramping last week, and somehow this happened.

Of course now all I want to do is live in maternity pants so I can see how it looks....

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

I Don't Remember Reading About THIS Test...

And another appointment is done.

There was the heart beat to listen to, a brief discussion about getting to skip the glucose test next month, and then out to make another appointment for 2 weeks down the line.

We were in the clear, ready to go, when I heard the nurse say she would catch me in the lobby.

Apparently there is this test that they ask women a little further along to do, but with the diabetes and all it would be best to do now to get a base line.

I'm not sure what the technical name of the test is, but I was sent to lab to pick up the following:

See, for 24 hours I need to place the white plastic "cap" into our toilet, pee in there, and then pour that into the orange jugs. Then I bring 24 hours worth of urine to the lab and have some blood drawn.

This has caused all matter of bad jokes, puns, and girly giggles from my husband.

Starting tomorrow morning I think we'll have to ban the cat from the bathroom....