{Aria’s Birth Story}


Almost four weeks old and I am finally getting to share Aria’s fast and furious birth story. I love reading other people’s birth stories because there is something so profound about the experience of birth that it should be shared.  A day your life is forever changed should be documented in detail to remember forever.  I also love that the experience of a child arriving, no matter how that happens, is so unique.

Lots of things about Aria’s pregnancy were completely different than her big brother.  I should have known her delivery would be different in a big way, too.  I was hoping for a faster delivery with it being my second pregnancy, but I never expected things to go the way they did.

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When 40 weeks came and went I wasn’t totally surprised.  I went into labor on my due date with Pierce, but he didn’t arrive until the very end of the following day.  I had been having quite a few contractions in the couple of weeks leading up to her arrival, and I hoped (prayed) they were progress making contractions since they were painful and not like the Braxton Hicks I’d been having since 28 weeks off and on.  I will never know for sure since I always decline being checked at appointments, but I will assume they were as her delivery was quick.

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I reread the above quote over and over in the week of her delivery.  It really helped me calm down at times.  By Sunday, October 23rd I was getting a little anxious.  I was three days past my due date and she was sitting so low, I seriously began to wonder how I would physically get through the next day at work.  She had to be arriving soon.  I then realized she hadn’t arrived yet because I hadn’t made up her birth announcement with her date of arrival and time. I did this with Pierce the week before he was due and I correctly guessed his arrival date, but was way off on his arrival time.  I made up a preview of her announcement on tinyprints.com and selected October 23rd as her birthday and 10:23 p.m. as her arrival time.  This had to put me in labor I thought.

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Despite being very uncomfortable  with tons of pressure on my pelvis,  I managed a two mile walk with the family late in the afternoon.  After arriving home I sent the husband to get a few necessities for the week while I got dinner ready and started feeding Pierce.  It was about 5:15.

After Ryan had been gone for a bit I had a contraction that felt like the real deal, but I didn’t think much of it.  A few minutes later I had another.  Then a few minutes later another.  I still didn’t even get excited or text Ryan.  I had this happen a few times before. On a couple of nights the week before I’d had contractions for an hour or two and then they stopped.  I didn’t want to cause a false alarm or incite unnecessary excitement in anyone.

As I was feeding P I noticed these seemed to be a bit more painful and kind of regular.  I decided to start tracking them with my Contraction app.  It still had all my contractions I charted from Pierce’s labor.  I looked it over and quickly prayed my next labor wasn’t like his with only back labor before deleting the information and starting fresh.  My first contraction entered in the app was at 5:54 p.m.

When Ryan got home at 6:15, I was feeling more sure that this was the real deal.  Each contraction was painful and I’d had seven contractions since I had started keeping track of them in the contraction app.  Most contractions were 35-45 seconds long and they were coming every 2-6 minutes.  I would highly recommend this app.  When you are actually in labor it is impossible to keep track of how long they are lasting, the frequency with which they are occurring and their intensity with accuracy.  This helps do all that for you.

Since we live close to the hospital we were again told to follow the 3-1-1 policy.  This means wait to head to the hospital until contractions are three minutes apart and lasting for one minute at a time for an hour.  I wanted to labor at home as long as possible.  Last time my contractions were so irregular and painful right away I was really confused about when to go in.  Back labor will do that.  They were pretty painful right away this time, too, but completely different.

This time my contractions were like what people had always described them as.  I had a couple of mottos picked out to repeat to myself in my head when breathing through a contraction.  I had my labor playlist ready.  I made a playlist with Pierce that I never used during labor. This time I relied on it early on.  It helped me move through and zone out during a contraction and focus on my mantra.  I was really hoping for a water birth.  I was okay with an epidural if I exhausted all other options, but wanted to make sure I really gave it my everything first.

By 6:45 p.m. my contractions were coming every two-three minutes, but were still lasting about 45-50 seconds so I didn’t think it was time to head to the hospital.  I wanted to wait until they were lasting a bit longer.  By this time I had locked myself in the office and my husband was with Pierce.  His parents had come over to spend the night and care for Pierce as this was the real deal.  Oddly enough they were already in town eating dinner and Ryan’s mom had her packed bag in the car.  It’s like they knew it was going to happen.  I listened to my playlist and moved and breathed through the contractions.

At 7:45 things were much the same.  I had told Ryan what to pack in the car between contractions.  I read my son a bed time story between contractions and gave him a hug and a kiss and sang him my bedtime song for him in between contractions.  I thought about how the next time I saw him I would probably be holding his sister in my arms.  It was the moment I had feared and looked forward to for a while.  I was expecting this to be a hard moment for me, emotionally accepting he wouldn’t be my only baby anymore, but in reality I was in too much pain and the contractions were too close together for me to get too emotional or sentimental.

Labor was demanding more of my focus so after putting my son to bed I headed to his sister’s room.  For some reason I like to labor in their nursery’s imagining them and focusing on what labor is all about-meeting your baby.  I labored in different positions.  I used my yoga ball.  I asked my husband to join me in her room and take over with the contraction app.  Interestingly I did not want his help during this labor at all.  I did not want to be touched or bothered.  I just wanted to be left alone to do what my body was meant to do.  I began repeating my labor mantras over and over in my head during every contraction.

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At 8:45 p.m. the contractions were coming every two to three minutes, but they were only about 45 seconds long.  My husband wanted to go to the hospital.  I did not.  According to my Contraction app, my contractions then began to pick up in frequency which coincided with my decision to take a hot shower.

In hindsight my husband might have been thinking with a more clear and level head at the time.  I had no concept of the time I had been in the shower.  I did not have my husband chart my contractions.  He suggested going to the hospital a couple of times while I was in the shower, but I really was so focused on my mantra and getting through each contraction I admit I wasn’t really listening.  That and I was moaning a lot.

Later I would find out I was in the shower for 26 minutes because when I got out the husband started using the contraction app again.  My contractions were now happening every minute and a half to two minutes and were lasting 48 seconds to a minute and a half. About ten minutes later I told my husband I think it was time to go to the hospital.  A few contractions later and my water broke soaking my pants.  The husband was (jokingly) worried about the newish carpet.  It did not get on the carpet nor did I care at that point.  I didn’t find humor in his joking at the time.

As soon as my water broke I said we need to go to the hospital…NOW.  I felt her move down even lower and my contractions were coming every minute it seemed.  My husband helped me out of my wet pants and I sent him for dry pants.  His mom asked if my water broke and she said he needed to take me to the hospital right away.  He said he was working on it, but I hadn’t been so cooperative leading up to my water breaking.  She looked pretty concerned.  I knew we needed to go so I walked through the house pantsless to meet my husband by the door not caring where my mother-in-law was. He helped me into my pants and then we immediately went to the car.

I rode in the passenger seat on my knees facing the backseat trying not to push, but my body wanted to so much.  Upon arriving to the hospital at 10:00 p.m., I had five or six contractions on the walk to labor and delivery. They tried to get me to sit in a wheelchair, which I said was not going to happen.  After getting to the delivery room they checked me and said I was 4 centimeters.  I said there was no way and if that was the case I want an epidural now.  I was having such strong urges to push, almost like my body was totally in control.  I had to lay in the bed while they tried to get baby’s heart on the monitor.  They said I had to do this for 20 minutes before an epidural or a water birth could happen.

A nurse kept telling me not to push to breathe.  I was trying so hard not to, but I couldn’t do much about my body doing it on its own.  They were struggling to get a heart rate reading so I had to move to one side and then the other.  Being asked to lay in that bed was like death. I was in so much pain and just wanted to get out of the damn bed.  I cannot stand laboring in bed.  Not being able to move through the contractions completely destroyed my focus.  My requests were not met and I do understand why, but at the time…grrrr!  The doctor then arrived and she inserted a heart rate monitor on the baby’s head and said I was 8 cm.  The doctor said my contractions were very strong and there would not be time for an epidural or to get the water birth tub ready. My baby would be here soon.  Very soon.

A few minutes later I was 10 cm and ready to push.  A few minutes later yet, baby girl was born. There was significant yelling during these last minutes.  I had trouble maintaining control and felt like I never got my calm focus back that I’d had all night prior to having to sit fairly still in bed.  I felt almost in shock about how fast things were going.  When her shoulders got stuck on my pelvis and they said her cord was wrapped around her neck panic set in. The husband was literally speechless during this time and said nothing…as in not a damn word.  I don’t even really remember him being there.  Things were so intense I literally had no options but to yell and just do it.  The silver lining-it was fast!
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At 10:36 p.m., 36 minutes after getting to the hospital, Aria Emerson was born.  Since she was blue and not crying she was immediately taken away.  That part was so scary.  Not knowing what was going on or if she was ok was the hardest thing.  After getting lots of mucus sucked out, being given oxygen and recovering for a bit, she was given to me for skin to skin and breastfeeding to which she immediately latched on.  Despite a crazy arrival to the hospital, a cord being wrapped around her neck and shoulder dystocia (her shoulders were stuck on my pelvis so the doctor had to help her out), she arrived quickly and healthy without complications to her or I.

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Less than an hour after my water broke at home Aria was here.  While they were working on making sure she was ok, I wavered between worry and shock as to what just happened. I had just had a baby a half hour after getting to the hospital without any medication.  The husband seemed equally shocked.  The important thing was she was here and healthy.

Once she was in my arms I felt so much better.  I was so excited to see her eagerly nursing, to see her little chest rise with each precious breath she took and to see her tiny little feet (they really are tiny).

I took in her head full of dark hair and her long fingernails on her delicate fingers.  She seemed so much bigger than her brother had.  She really was, too, weighing in at 8 pounds, 5 ounces and measuring 19.75 inches long.  Big brother had been 6 pounds, 14 ounces and a quarter inch shorter.  It felt so familiar to hold a newborn and yet so new.

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With Pierce I felt an attachment early on, but also so much fear of the unknown and so much uncertainty about becoming a mom.  With Aria I also felt an attachment, but a different fear of what life as a family of four would be like.  I was having a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that she was here.  It seemed like it was just March and we were finding out that we were for sure pregnant after several false negative tests the month before.  Chasing after her big brother made this pregnancy go so much faster than the first, in some ways I felt as if I never fully processed that I was pregnant.

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I felt love for her on the day I met her, but honestly my love has just grown and grown in my few weeks at home with her.  That is part of the reason for the delay on this post.  I haven’t wanted to put her down or stop snuggling her to write a post.  I feel as if I fall more in love with her each day.  My sweet Aria I love you so much!  The other part of the delay is life is crazy when you have two children 18 months apart.  There isn’t really time for yourself.  Someone almost always needs you.

We are adjusting to life as a family of four.  Big brother is at daycare during the day for at least the first six weeks, so I have plenty of time to bond with Aria.  This allows me to enjoy time with her and not have to also be chasing an active and curious 18 month old around constantly.

It is also great practice at getting three people ready in the morning as I take Pierce to daycare each morning and pick him up in the afternoon.  Lets just say it takes FOREVER to get two little people and a tired mommy ready and out the door in the morning.  Some mornings go smoothly and some morning we have all cried at some point before we leave, but we’ve made it every day.  Pierce being at daycare where he gets the interaction and stimulation he needs also gives me some down time and lets me enjoy my little people so much more in the scheme of things.

I’m anxious to see who Aria grows up to be, but also want her to be little forever.  Seeing Pierce after having her made him seem SO grown up.  I know how fast this stage goes as I just blinked and Pierce is toddler.  So far she is a great baby with a fussy time or two each day (although this has been increasing in length as of late and a lot this week).

Pierce is showing an overwhelming interest in her constantly wanting to touch her face and head. He is working on being gentle and loves to help change her diaper and hold his sister.  Aria or baby is often the first thing he says when he wakes up in the morning and one of the last things he says before bedtime at night.  I hope so much that they have an amazing and close sibling bond.  It is also so true when they say that you can love more than one child THAT much.  I miss Pierce on a daily basis when he is at daycare or I have to miss a bedtime story, but I also know that Aria won’t always need me so much.

I’ve been feeling awesome, too.  I strongly believe having a healthy, active pregnancy is a huge part of why the actual delivery went so well, pushing lasted a few minutes and recovery has been a breeze.  For now I’m easing back into workouts, getting used to not sleeping again, and enjoying every single new baby moment with a few holiday tunes and/or movies in the background.  I will continue to share my post-partum fitness journey along with family details here on the blog.  I still have no idea how I will juggle family and fitness exactly, but I do know it will be filled with ups and downs and will doubtfully be boring.

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Sarah

 

{Bumpdate} 40 Weeks

By now most of you know baby girl has arrived, but I did start this post before she arrived so I’m sharing it now.  Her birth story is coming soon.

Baby Girl,

You definitely have mama wondering when you will arrive.  I have been having quite a few contractions off and on over the past two weeks.  On two occasions I had contractions that were quite regular in timing and more painful than Braxton Hicks for over an hour or two and I thought, THIS IS IT!  Except it wasn’t.  I no longer think of contractions as meaning anything…until they do.  If I start having contractions, I just continue on with my regular day and don’t let myself get too excited. I know you will arrive when it is the right time for you.  Good things come to those who wait.  

These extra days of anticipation have you daddy going crazy, too.  He may be worse than me.  He is constantly asking how I am, if I feel anything, if anything is going on.  I actually had to ask him to stop asking.  I couldn’t handle the anticipation myself and his asking all the time.  He did defend himself by saying that he has to ask so much because he knows I wouldn’t tell him anything until I’m sure it is the real deal as not to get him too excited for a false alarm.  He’s right, but still.

We’ve been spending the extra time finishing up anything we can and trying to shower your brother with attention as we know soon we will have two children to love and give our attention to.  

When you’re ready baby girl, we are too.

Love,

Mom

Feeling:  Very uncomfortable and caught up in the magical excitement of seriously…ANY DAY NOW could be it!

There is something so magical and nerve-wracking about going past your due date. You know meeting your baby is just days (or maybe hours) away, but you are so anxious for their arrival it is hard to concentrate on anything else.  There is also something so annoying about going past your due date with people constantly checking in on you because they care, feeling uncomfortable and starting to feel like you might actually be pregnant FOREVER.  I know I won’t, but still.


I’m a firm believer in letting baby come when they are ready and not taking measures to rush their arrival unless truly medically necessary.  I deny opportunities to be checked at appointments as it really means nothing, and I do not want to be induced unless medically necessary.  Talks of induction in early November if nothing happens though feels like 8 million years from now.  I can’t imagine being pregnant for 42 weeks.

Cravings: Some days nothing.  Other days sweet stuff.  Pumpkin spice lattes.

Weight Gain: At my 40 week appointment I had gained 25 pounds.

Symptoms:  Baby girl is sitting so low.  Our midwife even commented how very low you are.  Uncomfortably, have-to-pee-all-the-time, it-hurts-when-I-walk low.  I feel like it can’t be long until your arrival as some other signs of your arrival have started to happen, but I will spare the details.

Workouts/Running:  Just walking feels like an effort.  I’m still trying to get out for a few walks a week, but you are making things quite uncomfortable lately.  

Week 38-Walking, prenatal sculpt DVD and yoga DVD.  I shared the details of these DVD’s in my previous bumpdate post.

Week 39-I managed a couple short walks this week.  We also went for a hike at a nearby state park.

Week 40-Running errands feels like a workout.  Walked two miles on the afternoon before baby girl would be born.

Looking Forward To:  Holding you in my arms.  Soon baby girl.  Soon.

Sarah

 

{Bumpdate} 38 Weeks


Halfway through the 38th week and eek!!  The real scary thing isn’t Halloween this October, rather it’s the unfinished things on our list.  Despite having some things to do yet, we are excited to meet you!  I’m hoping to share some photos from your room very soon.

Baby Girl,

I’ve been thinking about how raising a daughter will be different from raising a son. Teaching middle school has given me quite the insight into how big gender differences are in the teen years.  Dealing with all those emotions and challenges could be interesting.  I also think about the important things I hope to teach you and realize that they are not so different from your brother.  

I want to teach you to be kind to yourself and others.  To be confident, but not arrogant.  To be happy, but always grateful.  To achieve your hopes and dreams, but be willing to tackle a challenge to get there.  To love yourself and others, but be humble.  To make the world a better place than when you arrived.  To be a friend to those in need even if they might be different from you.  To embrace people’s differences while acknowledging your own.  And of course so much more.

I look forward to seeing your sweet baby face and watching you grow into the person you are meant to be my little love. 

Love,

Mom

Feeling:  Completely overwhelmed by our last minute tasks, but so excited to meet you, too.  This past month involved a husband gone for a weekend, a child who visited the doctor 4 times and has been sick on and off with two ear infections and an allergic reaction to antibiotic with full body hives, water in our basement resulting in the complete removal of our finished basement flooring, our washing machine basically quitting and my teaching partner colleague leaving the teaching profession so my long-term sub plans went from an outline and resources to 60 days of day-by-day lesson plans for two long term subs to follow.  Now I know why I’ve been stressed.  Soon you will be here and this will all be forgotten.


Relieved to cross items off our list like gifts for labor and delivery staff (Angie’s Kettle Corn, Kind bar, Chips Ahoy, Ghirardelli Chocolate and Tic Tacs), big brother gift (shirt-got for his bday, puzzle, flash cards, train set and snacks) and daddy’s hospital survival kit (soduko, beef jerky, chips, Mike and Ike’s, Snickers, mints, gum and one dollar bills for the vending machine.  A card, too).  I love making stuff like this, but it totally stresses me out, too.

Cravings: Some days nothing.  Other days sweet stuff.  Pumpkin spice lattes.

Weight Gain: At my 38 week appointment I had gained 25 pounds.

Symptoms:  Nothing new other than feeling like you have moved downward.  Not dropped completely, but on your way.

Workouts/Running:


36 Weeks & 37 Weeks-Walking, Prenatal Sculpt and Yoga as often as possible.  I haven’t been tracking my walks as I just have been so rushed for time.  I’m fitting in a prenatal sculpt workout and/or yoga at home whenever possible.  I’m definitely not rocking the workouts like I’d hoped to be at the end of this pregnancy.


Freezer Meals-(Both are from Diary of a Fit Mommy’s Blog)

Southwest Chicken & Rice

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 15 ounces drain and rinse Black Beans, Canned
  • 1 cup drain Whole Kernel Corn, Canned
  • ½ cups Salsa
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin
  • ½ cups Cheddar Cheese, Shredded
  • 2 cups chicken, shredded

Instructions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine rice, beans, corn, salsa, and cumin.
  2. Divide among indicated number of baking pans and top with cheese.
  3. Cover tightly with foil. Label and freeze.
  4. Bake from frozen at 350 for 1 hour or until cheese is melted and rice is warmed through.

Pepperjack Chicken Taquitos-SO AMAZING.  A must make!

Ingredients:

  • 8oz. cream cheese
  • 3 c. chicken, cooked & shredded
  • 1.5 c. shredded pepperjack cheese
  • 1 6oz. can green chilies or 1/2 cup salsa verde
  • 20 small tortillas
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 2 tbsp. lime juice
  • 1 tsp. cumin

Instructions:

  1. Melt cream cheese in a bowl. Mix in the spices, lime juice, chilies (or salsa), chicken, and cheese.
  2. Add 2 tbsp. of mixture to each tortillas and roll.
  3. To freeze, place on wax paper on a cookie cheet and stick in the freezer for 30 minutes.
  4. Remove from cookie sheet and place in a ziplocked gallon bag.
  5. When ready to cook, bake at 425 degrees for 15-20 minutes.

Looking Forward To:  Your arrival and holding you for the first time, AND you and your brother meeting for the first time.


Sarah

{Bumpdate} 36 Weeks

Baby Girl,

36 weeks kind of has me like whoa!  How is it possible that you could really arrive at any time now?  This whole big scary adventure that we’ve been envisioning is really about to start.  I feel so not ready, but yet so ready.  With your brother being sick so much, and what feels like everything else going wrong and things continually popping up on our calendar, I can’t imagine having another small person in the house to care for.  I was really freaking out this week.

Luckily, I had some contractions that woke me up to reality and made me think I need to get real here.  I need to start mentally preparing myself for labor and your arrival if I want to welcome you into a prepared and calm environment.  It got me to read some birth stories and really focus in on what was important.  It made me remember how I can’t wait to meet you and snuggle you on my chest.  It reminded me how amazing forming that breastfeeding relationship can be.  It focused me in on how I can’t wait to see you and your brother become friends as you grow older.

All this mental focus and prioritizing has been so helpful for me to remember that this is truly one of the most exciting times in our lives.  You don’t get to welcome baby #2 again. Finding water in our basement after all this rain and having to tear up the flooring in our finished basement this weekend still threw me for a bit of a freak out.

You seem to be the blessing that brings my focus back to life’s important things.  I love that about you.

Love,

Mom

Feeling:  Nervous about your arrival, but more mentally prepared for the work of labor, delivery and keeping a newborn alive.

I know I can do this.  It will be hard.  I will freak out at times.  Baby girl has a good daddy and a wonderful brother.  She will be so worth the work.

Cravings:  Chocolate and Sweets still!  My 1/2 cup serving of frozen yogurt is happening quite a few times a week now.  Blood sugars are still great.

Weight Gain: At my last appointment at 36 weeks on the dot I had gained 22.3 pounds. I had lost an ounce since my last appointment.  I was concerned since I’ve really only gained back the weight I lost since 29 weeks and now weigh actually just below the amount I did at my 29 week appointment.  The dietician had also mentioned my lack of weight gain at my last appointment, which I did point out to her that I had gained some weight, but after losing a few pounds it didn’t look like it.  When I spoke with my midwife about not really gaining weight in the past weeks, she said I had gained at a steady rate during the second trimester so she was not concerned.  My uterus is measuring on for my 36 weeks, too so baby is growing even if I’m not gaining weight.

Symptoms:  Feeling good early in the day and much more tired as the day goes on and in the evening.  No new symptoms!  Just exhausted at times, uncomfortable at times and feeling good at other times.

Workouts/Running:  I have been walking and got in a great run.  I still am fitting it in when I can rather than making any regular routine work.  

34 Weeks-


Walked-9 miles

35 Weeks-


Ran-2.5 miles (I felt amazing on this run. Wish I could find a way to make more running work right now.)

Walked-12 miles

Freezer Meals-

I don’t have time to share the links this week.  Nothing special with these, but I will add in links later.

Homemade Mac n’Cheese

Slow Cooker Roast

Looking Forward To:  I’m going to be honest.  I’m wavering back and forth between looking forward to not being pregnant anymore and trying to enjoy every last kick she gives.  You never know if this is the last baby or not.

Sarah

 

 

 

{Bumpdate} 34 Weeks

Baby Girl,

Most of the time I now think of myself as having two kids.  It is both exciting and scary. Not a vision goes by of our family’s future that you are not a part of.  Dream vacations, family trips, and thoughts of everyday moments include you in it.  When you think about how we don’t even know what you look like or who you will be, it is kind of crazy that you are such a part of our life already.

I’m also convinced that your brother knows you are in there even if he can’t understand what that means exactly.  He has become even more obsessed with lifting up my shirt and poking my belly button, but he also seems to be feeling my belly more lately.  Without any prompting he has also started laying his head on you.  The other night when I was up with him all night because he’s been sick, his little head was laying on my belly and you were just a kicking away.  Looks like you are picking on him already.

Of course, I hope you spend more time getting along than not.

Love,

Mom

Feeling:  Nervous about your arrival and guilty for having another child.

I’m so caught up in what this change will be like for Pierce and worrying about how he will take it.  I feel guilty for the time it will take away from him and the attention he will miss out on.  I can’t imagine spending less time with him or not being involved in his every moment.  At the same time, I’m nervous about your arrival.  I feel like I’m not as prepared as the weeks keep flying by and I haven’t been preparing like I did last time.  I feel like it was so long ago that we had a newborn even though it was only 16 months ago.


Cravings:  Chocolate!  Hershey kisses have only a 2.8g of carbs, so I find myself enjoying a few here and there.  My blood sugar still remains great, and I have only had one high reading by 1 point on a unique day (after eating out and sitting).

Weight Gain: At my last appointment a week and a half ago I had gained 21.5 pounds.

Symptoms:  Feeling good some days and very pregnant others.  Very tired after school days.  Like I can’t even think straight tired.  Suffering battered feet.  It appears my feet have grown a half size or more by the end of some days.  I have almost no work shoes that I can get my feet into.  The ones I can squeeze into leave my feet brutalized by the end of the day.  Peeing all of the time.  Seriously!  Multiple times a night.

Workouts/Running:  The struggle has been real.  

I’m trying to not make excuses, but juggling the school day, picking up Pierce and getting dinner ready for a hungry little person earlier than I expected everyday (he eats lunch at 11:00) makes getting in a workout after school impossible.  The husband is home too late to help start dinner or help in other ways.  After Pierce goes to bed, forget about it.  I am falling asleep in seconds if I sit down.  Right now I feel I need the extra rest.

As for my weekend goals, well the struggle continues.  Two weekends ago we were out of town the entire weekend.  If you have a young kid or more, then you know this means your kid(s) will wake up extra early and probably not sleep that great.  On top of this, they can terrorize a hotel room in seconds, so working out is super difficult if your also trying to get yourself, a husband and a child fed and ready to be places.

This weekend the husband was gone fishing and I am beyond my capacity to run and push a stroller.  Pierce has also been pretty sick.  We’ve been dealing with a high fever that showed up on at least 6 of the last 7 days.  We’ve been to the doctor twice.  We had planned to run the Labor Day Dash 5k in Madison this past Labor Day, but the little man woke up too sick to do that so we had to adjust our plans.  I was bummed and hoped to run one last race.  Oh, well.  Sacrifice is part of parenthood.  Sick babies need love and attention so workouts take a backseat.

Needless to say, you won’t find many miles ran.  I’m not ready to say I’ve ran my last run yet.  Most of my reasons for not running have little to do with how I feel and more just logistics of life.  I am hoping to get in a few more runs, but if life has another plan for me then I’m also ok with that.  I will have lots of time to run in the future.  As for other types of workout, well logistics have made them a struggle, too.

32 Weeks-


Ran-4.5 miles (2.5, 2)

Walked, but haven’t been keeping track of miles.

33 Weeks-


Ran-0 miles

Walked, but haven’t been keeping track of miles.  I should start.

Freezer Meals:  

Baked Ziti-We like to use whole wheat noodles and up the spices.  Season to your taste!

Cheesy Taco Bake and Tuscan Pasta

Looking Forward To:  Making the most of our last moments as a family of three.

Sarah

 

{Bumpdate} 32 Weeks

Two days from 33 weeks, I finally got this post together.  I’m glad to be documenting along the way even if it often takes me longer to get a post organized than I’d like.  Looking back on these memories is always special and worth it.

Baby Girl,

We are down to single digit weeks until we meet you.  I’ve come to terms with giving up lattes and treats for our health, and it hasn’t really been all that hard.  As the days dwindle down, I find myself daydreaming about what you will look like.  Will you look like your brother or have your own features from birth?  What kind of baby will you be?  Will you show us your personality early on or save that for later?  I look forward to snuggling you and the feeling of a new baby on my chest, those little legs all tucked in.  I can’t wait to look at your fingers and toes and the shape of your nose.  

At the same time some of that new mom anxiety is creeping in.  Will you arrive healthy? Will I feel as great after delivery as last time?  Will breastfeeding be as much of a success as last time?  Will you sleep any better than your brother?  How will I share the love between two?  How will I get two kids ready and dropped off at daycare on my own?

When I start to worry I default back to the good things…new baby smell, those little newborn sounds, watching you sleep, memorizing your face and seeing your daddy and brother hold you for the first time.  When I think about all the exciting and scary first moments to come, I know it will be crazy emotional, crazy overwhelming, crazy blissful, but mostly just crazy good.

Love,

Mom

Feeling:  Whoa, we are actually having another baby! I have so much to do. Let’s do this, this and this.  Wait, I’m so tired!

Ironically I felt this exact same way at this point in my pregnancy last time minus feeling so tired at times.  A combination of where has the time gone and there is only/we still have 8 weeks to go is definitely taking place.

I also have an intense desire to get projects wrapped up.  We’ve been working like crazy every moment we have to cross something else off the list.  Everything in our garage was removed, organized, sorted and cleaned.  It is currently in piles waiting to be put back on shelves, but it will be so great to have a clean and organized garage.

In the kitchen, a few cabinets have been touched up with paint, the coffee/beverage bar project underway, a new kitchen faucet installed and a hideous storage cabinet relocated to the garage that was also cleaned out and organized.

The house has been pressure washed, the deck swept and scrubbed, gutters cleaned and trees trimmed.  To do is a new mailbox post.

Baby girl’s room has been painted and needs a few touch ups, her curtain rod has been hung, some wall art ordered and her dresser ready to go.  Still to do: hang wall art, put up shelves, new closet doors and put the finishing touches on her room.

Cravings: Chocolate occasionally, but not really anything.  It helps knowing any treat I might crave I can’t really have so why even go there.

Weight Gain:  20 pounds.  After my appointment with the dietician last week I had lost 2 pounds since my previous dietician and 29 week appointments.  I guess giving up the lattes and the few times a week treats can add up even when pregnant.

Symptoms:  Feeling good most of the time, but very pregnant and tired at other times. Frequent potty breaks, feeling very pregnant by the end of the day, fatigue and being emotional at times.

Workouts/Running:

I’m already struggling with balancing back to school, getting projects done and working out.  In the past after bedtime was my go to workout time during the school year, but by evening I’m feeling too tired and uncomfortable to get in much of a workout.  I am still excited that running is even something I still want to do at this point.  Last time around I was done for and didn’t even really have an interest in running at this point in my pregnancy.

As for balancing time, I’ll be honest, I don’t have a solution in mind yet exactly.  Getting up earlier really isn’t an option unless I get up at 4:30 am, and that is not going to happen. I already have to be up by 5:30 a.m. to get myself ready, my son ready and dropped off at daycare, and get myself to work.

I’m hoping to feel well enough to run a day or two a week after school and to get a run or two in on weekend mornings.  I will plan to walk most nights.  With less than eight weeks to go until baby girl, this might be the best I can muster knowing there will be after school meetings and more frequent doctor appointments, too.

30 Weeks-

IMG_0691
Ran-7.5 miles (3, 3, 1.5)

Walked-10 miles

31 Weeks-

IMG_0692

Ran-4.6 miles (2.5, 2.1)

Walked-8 miles

Freezer Meals-So far I’ve made two freezer meals-Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas (we like to add extra veggies to this recipe like different colored peppers) and Chicken Manicotti (it’s called Super Easy Chicken Manicotti, but I’ll be honest stuffing those shells is a pain in the butt.)  When making freezer meals I simply make two pans of one dish for dinner one evening.  One gets eaten that night and as leftovers, and the other frozen with a label for a later date.

This means that once baby girl arrives the meal has already been cooked and only needs to be defrosted in the refrigerator the night before and popped in the oven for dinner.  I’ve linked both recipes above.  By using low carb tortillas and eating only one manicotti shell with extra chicken, both dishes have met my GD diet requirements.

Looking Forward To:  Meeting baby girl for the first time.  I’m really starting to look forward to all those sweet new baby moments.  I can’t wait to see what you look like, hold you and for you to meet your daddy and big brother.

Sarah

{Bumpdate} 30 Weeks

Of course after taking this photo I realize I’ve already worn this dress for a bumpdate, but then I realize I don’t really care because soon I won’t be 30 weeks anymore (taken on 30 weeks, 4 days.) 😉 I also realized these stripes make me look significantly more pregnant than solids, but I’ve just got a thing for stripes! 

Baby Girl,

I’ve been worrying so much about you since finding out I have gestational diabetes.*   Of all people, I NEVER expected to get those results.  The guilt I feel is immense.  My one job as your mom so far has been to make the best choices I can to ensure your safety during your 40 week stay and delivery, and it seems I’m failing already.  

I’ve always tried to live by the 80/20 rule.  Eat healthy and make smart choices 80% of the time and live a little the other 20% of the time.  It turns out that might work for some, but for this pregnancy it’s not enough. Giving up my lattes and the occasional ice cream treat has already been a challenge.  If, however, following a stricter diet means you will grow to be a healthier weight and have a possibility of a safer entry into this world, then it is what I will do.  

I thought all my regular worries were a lot, but now worries of birthing a big baby, induction, or worse, c-sections and you having low blood sugar after birth have me freaking out.  I promise you though, little lady, I will do everything within my control to make sure you have a healthy arrival.

Love, 

Mom

Feeling: Emotional about finding out I have gestational diabetes. 

I never really gave much thought to that first 1 hour glucose test as I never even considered that I might actually fail it.  Even when the results came back that I had failed by only 6-9 mg/dl depending on whose guidelines you follow, I was optimistic that I would not fail the 3 hour glucose test.  I eat healthy most the time.  Treats are occasional.  I love my lattes, but I exercise everyday.  

My other reasoning for not completely freaking out included: I’ve never been overweight, there is no history of diabetes in my family, I did not have a large baby last time around nor did I have gestational diabetes, I’ve been on target with my weight gain and baby girl measured on at my 29 week appointment.  I rationalized that I have been maintaining running throughout this pregnancy.  I ran two half marathons during my pregnancy (one training run in my first trimester and one race in my second trimester).  I couldn’t possibly have gestational diabetes. Except that I do.

When I saw the missed call from the clinic the day after my 3 hour test, I knew I had failed. Two of my four tests had higher than allowed results.  Despite one of the tests being over by only 6 mg/dl, two failed results is a diagnosis of gestational diabetes.  

I was devastated. I was shocked.  I was ashamed.  I was confused.  I was upset.  There was crying and worry. Even after having time to process this and hearing it’s not my fault, take the was out and insert AM, and that is pretty much where I am at with this diagnosis.  There IS crying and worry.

After doing some research and meeting with a diabetic educator, I now have a diet plan to follow that restricts carbohydrates and increases my daily protein.  Luckily so far, the only real changes I’ve made to my diet include eating more protein throughout the day, always eating carbs with protein, and eating less fruit and giving up the occasional treats and lattes.  Making these changes and counting carbs has kept my blood sugar under control.  Should more changes be needed, then I will make those. 

Giving up the few lattes I enjoyed a week has been painful.  It’s heart wrenching to think of a fall season without PSL and yummy pumpkin flavored carbs.  If you don’t know what PSL is then you really won’t understand anyway.  I’m being dramatic…sort of.

It sucks that I can’t have fruit or cereal for breakfast.  Fruit is quite limited throughout the day actually.  Sweets are out almost entirely.  I’m not sure I can restrict myself to the half cup of frozen yogurt or the 2×2 piece of cake with no frosting allowed on occasion (I mean who really eats only 1 serving of frozen yogurt or ice cream?  Seriously, who are you?), so I’m just avoiding it altogether so far.  I was also told to be active after each time I eat a meal, but with a 15 month old and an already active lifestyle I have not found this to be an issue.  Half the time I’m eating while standing and on the go already.

According to my blood sugar test results, which I take four times a day, I’ve never even been close to being over the target numbers I was given.  My hope is that this continues for the remainder of my pregnancy and that my controlled blood sugar will result in a healthy (and not huge) baby girl and vaginal delivery.  I’m also aware that for some pregnant women with gestational diabetes that as their pregnancies progress their blood sugar gets harder and harder to manage.  If anyone has experience with this, I’d love to hear more.  I don’t know of anyone who has had it.

 

All happy pre-gestational diabetes diagnosis. No I dont ever make my bed.

 
Cravings:  I guess it doesn’t really matter what I’m craving since my diagnosis, but oddly enough fruit has become the new thing I wish I could have more of.  I totally didn’t realize how often I would grab a pear or apple, cut up a bowl of berries or enjoy a delicious kiwi for a snack or when I was hungry.  It actually tastes so sweet now when I eat it.

Weight Gain:   At my 29 week prenatal appointment and when meeting with the dietician at 30 weeks, both scales said I’d gained 22 pounds.  I’ve gained six pounds less than where I was at this point with my first pregnancy.

Symptoms:  Many of the same symptoms remain, but I’m just feeling more pregnant. More uncomfortable.  Bigger.  Heavier.  Less able to reach things.  Lots of movement from baby girl.  Much more emotional this pregnancy.

Exercise/Workouts: At 30 weeks I’m starting to feel not as good running.

I think we are officially in the take each day at a time phase of running pregnant.  Each day when I dress to run I won’t know if I’m running, running and walking or just walking until I get out the door.

I’ve had a couple of great runs lately, but a lot of days I’m not feeling as good as I was before.  I’m likely going to be adding in more walks and taking a few more rest days from running to help with this.  The timing is also unfortunate that as I’m growing more uncomfortable our days got busier.  During week 29 we were out of town four days doing fun things and I had three doctors appointments (one required fasting for 16 hours when all was said and done).  This made it really hard to workout.  My details are below.

28 Weeks-

 

Ran-8.65 miles (4.3, 1.65, 2.7)

Walked-5 miles

Hiked-4 miles in Door County

Kayaked-3.6 miles on Lake Michigan

Yoga Class-60 minute class

29 Weeks-  

Ran-1.6 miles

Walked-7 miles

Looking Forward To:  Celebrating your healthy arrival with you in my arms and a PSL nearby.  🙂

Sarah

*Update: I realized I didn’t explain what gestational diabetes is.  It is not known why GD occurs in some pregnant women.  GD occurs when the same hormones from the placenta that help the baby develop also interfere with the mother’s insulin in her body.  This creates insulin resistance in the mother where her body struggles to use the insulin and that extra insulin in the blood becomes glucose and is passed to baby.  Since baby doesn’t need the glucose, it becomes fat and results in bigger babies if not controlled. 

Having GD does not mean the mother was or will be diabetic, but it does raise chances of developing type 2 diabetes later in life for both mom and baby.  Bigger babies can also lead to delivery complications like induction, csections, and low blood sugar in babies after birth requiring formula supplements and monitoring.  Many women who have GD and control their blood sugar go on to have healthy pregnancies and deliveries.