Posts Tagged ‘pregnancy’

It’s Pregnancy Season And I’m Not Pregnant

Wednesday, July 19th, 2017

I’m at Target to pick up diapers and I’m pretty sure every other woman in the store is pregnant. I pass them everywhere: in the grocery aisle, in the baby clothes, wandering home decor. It’s 87 degrees with 95% humidity outside and all the pregnant women are wearing tank tops and pushing toddlers in their carts stocked with goldfish crackers and beach buckets and ice cream. To me, they are all glowing and adorable and lucky to have so much to look forward to. But I know they probably feel enormous and uncomfortable, cursing themselves for a summer pregnancy, crossing their fingers that their toddler will take a nap later (or at least eat their goldfish for lunch while zoned out in front of Disney Jr so mama can lie on the couch under a fan).

My last baby is almost a year old now. I am far enough removed from being a pregnant woman at Target that I silently think “enjoy those moments” but still close enough that I know better than to say it out loud. A woman is not going to suddenly realize being hot and swollen and sore and tired and nauseous are all such blessings just because a stranger says “it goes so fast” or “I miss those days”. I am close enough to being a pregnant woman at Target that I know that is not entirely true. I do not miss those days. I do not miss being hot and swollen and sore and tired and nauseous and wondering how, exactly, I was ever going to manage a newborn when I couldn’t manage to put on pants every day. Not only do I not want to a pregnant woman at Target, don’t actually want to be pregnant at all.

And I’m not. I will most likely never be pregnant again. (I would say NEVER with 100% certainty but I know better than to tempt fate like that.)

What I do miss is being in that season of life. It doesn’t matter if those pregnant women at Target are technically older or younger than I am in years. They’re still at the stage where they will have a newborn. That’s a stage before the one I am in. New life is in their future, the moment when they meet a new little human they created. I don’t long to be pregnant again, but I do feel nostalgic for that particular flavor of joy. It’s not baby fever – I am thoroughly immunized against that particular strain by four children who all insisted on growing up – but it’s like a bruise. You don’t really notice it until you bump into it by accident, in the checkout at Target, and then it’s a dull ache that says “you’re not in this club anymore”.

I suspect these feelings are just biology, but that doesn’t stop me from feeling them. So this is me acknowledging it, writing it down in words, trying to explain it to you so I can explain it to me. Instead of being sad, I will let myself drift further towards the stage of life where I become the person who says “Oh it goes by so fast, treasure these moments” to pregnant women in Target. I will recount stories about my newborns in absolutes: “Oh my baby was such a good sleeper” “oh my baby loved being swaddled “oh my baby hated tummy time”. I will forget how much being pregnant sucks and only think of it fondly. And when gray-haired grandmas at Target look at my four not-babies and say “Enjoy these moments, it goes so fast”, I will smile and nod and say “It sure does.”

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My Week(303) in iPhone Photos

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016

This is the week in photos that corresponds to the terrible horrible week of solo parenting in 100-degree weather, so there are a lot of photos of us doing…nothing. It was a miracle everyone survived.

Sunday:

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Private lake

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Big kid swinging

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I let him stay in my bed

Monday:

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We watched so much Pokemon

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RIDICULOUS

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A strong selfie game

Tuesday:

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The cat loves my belly

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More private lake time

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Digging for treasure

Wednesday:

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LASHES

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Just what she needed: another adorable bathing suit!

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OK I guess

Thursday:

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Lake baby

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More naps. NOT COMPLAINING.

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SO GOOD LOBSTER ROLL

Friday:

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Shopping day

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New kicks

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Still sleeping in my bed, now with his own pillow and covers

Saturday:

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Don’t worry, this deer survived the wash

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SO HAPPY to be annoying the crap out of me

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Linc loves my bump

So far this week is 100% more relaxing than last week, especially because I HAVE A NEW VAN. We just won’t talk about how my iPhone isn’t really working since the kids dropped it while playing Pokemon. It’s fine. I’ll be fine. The camera is ok, so at least my blogging won’t suffer. That’s the important part.

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Can You Ever Just Be Whelmed?

Saturday, August 20th, 2016

SHORT VERSION OF THIS INSANELY LONG POST: I did not accidentally have a baby while my husband is gone and our van is dead. Hopefully next week I will get a new minivan and a baby. 

Now that this week is 90% over, I no longer feel – both literally and figuratively – like I am drowning. Now it’s more like I’m treading water while holding half a pool noodle and also a baby. It’s been a really, really hot summer here in CT, sauna-levels of hot and humid, except you can’t just sit around wrapped in a tiny towel and the warning not to spend more than 20 minutes at a time in the heat can’t be followed because you can’t leave. In past years we’ve had a week or two of this weather, but not so many days in a row I lose the ability to leave my bedroom. Our house feels both way too big (how can I be expected to walk down a flight of stairs EVERY TIME I have to pee? why is there no way to air condition the open main living space?) and way too small (GET AWAY FROM ME CHILDREN) and I actually cannot wait to go to the hospital to give birth. Not because I like the hospital. I hate the hospital. Not even because I want to meet the baby. Obviously I do. But mostly because they have air conditioning AND a bathroom only 3 steps from the bed. HEAVEN.

Last week was a culmination of everything that could go wrong (besides actual baby-related stuff) all happening at once. It was hot (did I mention that yet?) and I had to drop Evan off at Seaport camp every morning with 2.9 other children in tow. There is not drop off line. You park across a busy street, take everyone in with you, sign one kid in, then have to convince everyone else to leave again when what they really want to do is play at the Seaport. Last year I had no problem staying. This year I felt like I was going to die just from crossing the street, so spending several hours walking around just wasn’t possible. I am literally unable to chase Linc if he runs away and he is deep in a running-away phase. Have I told you he also refuses to wear shoes? Because that’s also true. So no shoes, doesn’t listen, bolts at every chance AND at a waterfront location is just asking for trouble. What I’m saying is that week was already stressing me out.

Then our downstairs fridge stopped working. Good news: we hardly ever use that fridge. Bad news: we hardly ever use that fridge, so I have no idea what was in it or how horrific it currently is. Pretty horrific, I’m guessing. I can’t deal, so I’m waiting for E to get to it so he can deal. In the meantime, I’m just not opening the basement door.

Anyway, back to camp, sort of. On Thursday when I dropped Evan off, the oil light in the car kept turning on and off and on and off. Since we had the car serviced and the oil changed LITERALLY 9 DAYS AGO I planned to call the car place when we got home and ask them to take a look. But by the time we got home it had stopped happening and I figured it was a glitch, the way my airbag light and my tire pressure lights are always on (I’ve had them checked multiple times, there’s actually nothing wrong). On Friday, on the way to drop Evan off, it started happening again. This time I called E at work and asked him if he could call the car place and make sure I could drive straight there after drop off because maaaaaaaybe this was an actual problem. But how could it be? We JUST changed the oil. Surely they would have noticed a major issue. He called, they made an appointment and told me to bring it in. After I hustled the children back to the car, I decided to take the fast way – the interstate – back to town instead of the back way – country roads – because I wanted to get there as soon as possible.

I’d been on the highway less than 3 minutes before I realized my car wasn’t accelerating. It was barely running. I pulled onto the shoulder and burst into tears because I KNEW how screwed I was. The engine wouldn’t turn over. I was stuck on I-95 with 2.9 children.

Luckily, E was still in his building and not unreachable (he is very often unreachable at work) and someone found him and he came to rescue us. Or at least he came to provide a car with air conditioning that worked to sit in while we waiting for AAA to come. And waited. And waited. And waiting. Eventually the state patrol truck came to check on us and suggested we put oil in the van. A while after that I called AAA back and they couldn’t find a record of my call (of course) so they put in the request again (of course) and then I got a text saying my request had been canceled (of course). So when the van started, we decided I would put the kids in E’s car, he would drive the van, and we would try to get to the car place. We made it to within 5 miles of the car place before the van died again, for real. So dead. RIP Minivan. We used the car to push it off the road into a parking lot where we could wait for AAA. AGAIN. This time, they managed to actually put my request through and we got updates from the tow truck so we knew we had time to run home, let Caroline pee, grab lunch and go back to the parking lot to wait some more. After we got the van to the car place and the kids home (Evan was still at camp) we both made calls to reschedule the rest of our day.

Later, the car place called to confirm that our van was in fact a giant blue brick and replacing the seized engine was going to cost twice what the van was worth. It turns out there was a huge hole in the oil pan. I’m still not exactly sure how an oil pan that was looked at NINE DAYS AGO can have a huge hole in it, but they assured us it wasn’t their fault. I don’t have the energy to argue, especially because I am SURE the only way they would agree it was their fault was in small claims court and I can’t prove anything. I mean, Judge Judy would TOTALLY be on my side, but I don’t know about real life judges.

So after we took a break from that disaster to go see the show at Foxwoods on Friday night, we spent Saturday looking at new vans. It was horrible, because car shopping is horrible and children are horrible. Plus it was a million degrees and most car dealer lots are already as hot as balls, so when it’s even more hot than usual standing around looking at cars is almost unbearable. And there’s no good way to test drive anything when it means moving over 3 car seats every time. We did not buy a van. Our current car is a Ford Fusion, which means yes, we do all fit in it well enough to drive around to dealerships, but NO, we are not going to fit as soon as I have this baby. We have to have a new vehicle. We definitely want another minivan. It shouldn’t be THAT hard to buy something. But we failed on Saturday.

But why didn’t you just buy a car on Sunday? you ask, like a normal person. Oh, right, because my husband left for a week on Sunday morning. Because who doesn’t schedule work travel when their wife is 38-39 weeks pregnant? SEEMS LIKE A GREAT TIME TO BE HALF WAY AROUND THE WORLD. (It’s not his fault, just add it to the list of ways the Navy DGAF.) On the one hand, it means I can use his car this week while we browse internet listings for a van. On the other hand, if he was here we could just buy a van. Putting 3 kids across the back of a mid-size sedan is awful, especially because we still have Linc rear-facing aka perfect head-kicking height for his brother. Plus there’s not room for things like “the groceries a family of soon-to-be-six actually needs to feed themselves for more than two days”. It’s stupid. Everything is stupid. I just want a car that works.

Also, we have a fruit fly invasion, the garage door isn’t working, the a/c is about to die from overuse, the shower drain is all backed up, the shelf over the washer and dryer collapsed, the dog won’t stop eating used diapers, Linc has a rash, I’m pretty sure I have a mild kidney infection again, my heartburn is unbearable, the kids are ALL sleeping in my room, my pelvis feels like it’s going to split apart and I am still pregnant. Plus last night I realized I have done NOTHING to get ready to have a baby. I didn’t buy a new Boppy – the only thing I was actually going to buy – I didn’t find the bin that has the baby clothes, I don’t have any diapers, I haven’t even begun to pack a hospital bag. I am an actual disaster who probably should not be adding another child to her life but IT’S TOO LATE NOW.

I keep trying to focus on all the ways I am very, very lucky. We can (mostly) afford to replace the van. It’s not ideal, but it won’t be impossible. The day the van died, E was here and reachable and able to take over 90% of Dealing With It because I didn’t feel at all capable. No one got hurt. We do have a space in our house with a/c and we aren’t suffering from heat stroke. I’ve been able to put almost everything on pause and just keep the kids ALIVE this week while waiting for E to get back. I didn’t go into labor with no back-up plan while he was gone. In a week my mom will be here and she can help with finding the bin of baby clothes and making sure the kids eat something besides carrot sticks and popsicles while I lie down not handling things. And soon I will have a nice, new, clean, van with FOUR car seats installed so I can have this baby without also having a panic attack. I’ve gone from completely overwhelmed to at least capable of talking about it without crying in the course of a week. I feel like that’s about all I can ask for right now. My goal for today is the hospital bag, finding the rock-n-play, putting away enough laundry I can see the nursing chair and once again, keeping my children alive. Tomorrow, van shopping. Then I can be just plain whelmed.

p.s. Still no name for this baby.

p.p.s. God bless the lake for keeping me from completely losing my shit this week, so please enjoy these lake photos.

lake life august 2016

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lake life august 2016-16

lake life august 2016-18

lake life august 2016-21

lake life august 2016-22

lake life august 2016-25

lake life august 2016-27

lake life august 2016-29

lake life august 2016-32

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p.p.p.s. My new updated WordPress says the readability on this post “needs improvement”. CAN YOU NOT, WORDPRESS?

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A Fourth Pregnancy Update

Wednesday, July 6th, 2016

belly 32 weeks

Here’s the thing about having a fourth baby – you don’t really have time for a fourth baby until the baby actually shows up and you HAVE to give them your attention. That’s why I am currently  31 31+ 32 weeks pregnant and haven’t written a single pregnancy update so far. I have no weekly bump shots, no cute comparisons to fruit sizes, no lists of symptoms or weird body changes. All changes have already been made, at least one whole baby ago. My body can do all sorts of horrifying things and my reaction is “meh, I’ve seen worse”.

It has gotten very hot recently, and I am reminded why summer pregnancies are the worst. I am feeling extra large and swollen and sweaty all the time, even when I am doing my best to drink water and keep my feet up and not move more than necessary between the hours of 11 am and 4 pm. Several of those hours also happen to be Linc’s current nap hours, so there is a lot of afternoon screen time happening in our house. I keep trying to feel guilty about it – because I’m supposed to feel guilty about letting the kids watch iPad instead of having an #unpluggedchildhood, right? – but can’t work up the energy. Maybe after a quick nap.

I had such good intentions when it came to really enjoying and basking in this last pregnancy. I was going to think about things like “This is the last time I’ll feel relief at 24 weeks” and “This is the last time we’ll get to pick a baby name”. Instead, I keep forgetting how pregnant I am and please let’s NOT talk about the complete lack of name decisions being made. I think a big part of it is that when I was pregnant with Lincoln they were concerned with my amniotic fluid levels, so I had a LOT of appointments. There were bi-weekly non-stress tests and weekly ultrasounds, all of which Evan and Caroline attended with me, plus regular check-ups and blood work. In contrast, this baby had one extra ultrasound early on and we’ve reached the point where I have the standard weight-belly size-any questions? appointments every 2 weeks, but no NSTs, no extra testing, no dragging my kids to the hospital all the time. This baby is unwatched and unmonitored and completely average.

That doesn’t mean he isn’t trying to to make himself known. My current daily heartburn levels are somewhere between “being stabbed with hot knives” and “oh my God I must have esophageal cancer this cannot be normal”. I still have daily morning sickness and sometimes evening sickness. I have to pee constantly. Like right now. Even though I just went 10 minutes ago. And all night. It’s exhausting. He also kicks and rolls more than any previous baby, sometimes moving so much I gasp and clutch my belly and feel like he’s about to just pop right out, Alien-style. I would much rather he make his exit the normal way, so hopefully he figures that DOWN is a better direction for the poking in the next few weeks.

I have plans to force my family to help me take maternity photos again, like I did last time. Since this is my last pregnancy, I’m going to be as completely cliche as possible – long dress, flower crown, standing in a river looking pensive about the miracle that is motherhood – and not feel the least bit self conscious about it. Plus any excuse to stand in a river sounds really good right now, since it’s 93 degrees outside and we don’t have air conditioning. For now I’m going to finally hit publish on this, put a cold washcloth on my head and take a nap.

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Baby FOUR Details And Stuff

Thursday, March 3rd, 2016

Surprise! Honestly, I would say I was also surprised to find out I was pregnant again but REALLY?! This is the fourth time – fifth if you count the chemical pregnancy right before Linc. I know how it happens. This is not that surprising.

It is a little bit surprising because I was using the lazy person’s birth control (breastfeeding) and hadn’t gotten my period back at all (sorry any dudes who happen to read this by accident) so it’s not like I was trying to get pregnant. I was just not NOT trying. The plan was always to give Linc a close sibling since it worked out so well for Evan and Caroline, but without a way to actually make that happen we just had our fingers crossed. I’m just very, very lucky. I’m very, very aware of that.

DAVISSUZANNE,20160301080451172

I realized I was pregnant at a game night with friends, when I drank half a glass of wine and immediately felt like throwing up. That is not at all my normal reaction to wine. I took a test that night when we got home and even though it wasn’t ideal testing conditions I got a super faint line. I woke up my (perhaps slightly drunk) husband to wave it in his face, but he swears his has no memory of that. The next day I tossed a digital test that said “PREGNANT” in his lap and that’s when he actually found out. I am not good at Big Gestures To Tell My Spouse. Not when I need him to immediately start handling all smelly house- and child-related issues.

I have what I think of as all the regular pregnacy symptoms – exhaustion, morning and evening sickness, constant peeing, sensitivity to smells, unexplained headaches I can’t take anything good for, pants that don’t fit. My face was breaking out like crazy for the first few weeks but it seems to be slightly better now. I spend every morning throwing up for 20 minutes but then I can usually power through until 3 or 4 pm when I have to start being careful to avoid triggers and then as long as I go to bed before 9 I’m mostly safe. Hopefully I’m almost past the morning sickness stage too and will get some of that good second trimester engergy, now that I’m in my second trimester.

Surprise again! I managed to not announce my pregnancy the second it happened, like I have previously done! I’m actually just slightly more than 14 weeks along, due at the end of August. This is the first time I’ve delayed talking about a pregnancy for so long, which felt a little weird. It started because I just didn’t want to announce at Christmas, then I didn’t want to announce until I had at least seen my OB but because I didn’t even call them until January my appointment wasn’t until the middle of the month. Then my standard screening test came back with some questionable results and I wanted all the information I could get before I opened myself up to every Facebook friend’s questions. Luckily the second, more accurate test came back normal and the ultrasound I had on Tuesday didn’t show anything concerning. I have another ultrasound at 19 weeks to triple check, but I feel reassured that things are as OK as you can ever say they are.Evan is SUPER excited. Caroline is excited about the idea of getting a sister. Linc doesn’t understand yet. Since I don’t want poor Caroline to spend the whole pregnancy thinking she’s getting a sister only to be disappointed at the hospital,

Evan is SUPER excited. Caroline is excited about the idea of getting a sister. Linc doesn’t understand yet. Since I don’t want poor Caroline to spend the whole pregnancy thinking she’s getting a sister only to be disappointed at the hospital, we’re going to find out what we’re having. Team Green was SUPER fun to do with Linc, but since this is mostly likely our last baby, having the next 5 months to purge baby clothes we won’t need is a good use of time. Just like I did a fancy announcement photo shoot, I have plans for a gender reveal photoshoots. It’s my LAST BABY. I want to do ALL the things. Imagine flower crowns and a sunset in my maternity photos.

Our families are very happy. My wonderful, fantastic, very understanding sister might have rearranged her wedding a tiny bit so I could still attend, which is one of the nicest things anyone has ever done for me. E has been great. Honestly, I think he also realizes this is probably the LAST BABY and has stepped up – doing the dishes, putting the kids to bed, volunteering to hold my hair while I throw up, bringing me the food I’m craving, letting me lie on the couch and wallow while he vacuums. It is making being pregnant while also having three children much easier.

I’ve heard adding a fourth barely matters in the grand scheme of things. We already have a minivan. I’m already staying home with a toddler, staying home with a toddler and a baby only means I’m more tired, not a real change in my schedule. Linc might have just weaned himself (literally yesterday) because my supply has dropped, so I get a little break before I have to nurse a newborn. And then I’ll get a NEW BABY to wear in all my wraps and my baby carriers and snuggle and take pictures of and love undyingly forever and ever. We already scheduled the summer out so we still get to do our beach vacation, lake membership, camp for the kids AND I can spend all of August lying in 18 inches of kiddie pool water in our backyard so I don’t have to wear clothes.

I know myself too well to make any blogging promises, but I have high hopes that now that I’m not keeping my pregnancy a secret I’ll have a lot more stuff to say. I might even do some pregnancy style posts, since this is my LAST BABY and I need very little stuff so I might treat myself to a few cute things that are meant for people actually growing humans instead of just mashing myself into XXL tanks and yoga pants. Although, like I said, I am due in August, and there is no pregnancy style in August. Especially when you don’t have air conditioning.

Isn’t it completely crazy that I started this blog in 2008 when I was newly pregnant with Evan and only a month after I reach the 8 year mark I’ll have my FOURTH baby? That’s a lot of babies and a lot of time to maintain a blog, even if it’s just a personal narrative at this point and not the amazingly popular money-making mommy blogging empire I imagined in the first few years.

And I am INCREDIBLY happy about all of it.

 

 

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