Wednesday, June 13, 2018

26 weeks/6 months

How preggo I am: 26 weeks, about 6 months

6 month/26 week bump

This was my bump with Lyra, I'm surprised how similar I look this time around. I feel bigger but I don't think I'm as drastically larger as I was thinking. 

Baby size: Baby boy is about 14 inches long and weighs around 2 lbs. The vegetable comparison of the week is a scallion or butternut squash.

Food cravings/aversions: I've got nothing.

Other symptom: For once, my neck didn't really bother me on a trip (we just went to Michigan to see Travis' family). My intense chiropractor/massage plan may be working for my neck pain finally. My back is starting to hurt a lot more though, I can't be on my feet for too long.

I get a ton of kicks these days, my belly is always bouncing around. And my bellybutton is not an innie anymore. It's just like, half gone, half an outie.

Sleep: Lyra spent most of the Michigan trip sleeping in the bed with us again so it was occasionally nice for cuddles, occasionally frustrating because there's less room and more chance of broken sleep for everyone. She's settling back into the home routine though, thank goodness.

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Mood: Alternating between grouchy because I'm uncomfortable and it is getting too hot and feeling alright because my neck isn't murdering me anymore. I did decide that I don't think I get trimesters. At least not this magic second trimester. I usually hear you're sick for the first one, feel adorable and full of energy for the second, and the third you're huge and ready to be done. I get the first half where I'm sick and barfing and apparantly have killer headaches. Then I have like 14 hours where I feel cute and pregnant and not sick. Then i have the second half where I'm basically one giant Braxton Hicks contraction, I feel huge and the heartburn/acid reflux is constant. I still maintain this half is better than the first half though, by far.

Names: There has been much more uncertainty and indecision about this than with Lyra. Which is driving me crazy because I like when I have plans. Finley Oswin and Oswin Finley are this week's top contenders.

Lyra stats: So Lyra is having a birthday party in 2 months and I thought it would be a good idea to give her a few weeks to try and gauge what kind of party she wanted. Horrible idea. We talk about her truck party every day. Every day.

In between that we talked about the 2 airplanes she was going to fly on to go to Michigan. She was so excited for that this time around and did pretty well on the planes. It is always a long tiring time travelling but we're all used to it and good at it.

Lyra had a blast in Michigan with all the attention and relatives to hang out with. She even inherited a hand me down dragon costume. She will not stop wearing it. I'm gonna be that mom in the grocery store with the kid in the dragon costume. At least I won't lose her in the store.

Best moment this week: I got to meet a brand new baby alpaca which was neat. My in laws have an alpaca farm, by the way. I wish he'd been born like 2 hours later because then I could have seen a baby alpaca birth but still, it was cool to see a brand new baby. He was a big one at 22 lbs and I helped name him Coriander (his mom is called Cinnamon). My mother in law, who is also an OB nurse, even saved the placenta for me to look at.  That's how I know I'm as weird as the family I married into.

Other stuff: So the not super fun thing about this week was going to go see where Nova is buried. It was the first time we've been back since we buried her so I was a little bit of a mess. Pregnancy hormones probably didn't help that feeling either. I go back and forth sometimes between this feeling of "It's been almost a year, why does it still feel so bad?" and "It hasn't even been a year, how am I supposed to have moved on already?" Not to mention I think it is all compounded and dragged out from having two close together. Facebook pops up those reminders and memory posts. So I have been watching this year and seeing as those popping up, knowing what I posted the days I found out I was pregnant and when I miscarried. And watching myself try and be positive. I can definitely see how the first one didn't hit me nearly as hard as the second time around.

But anyway, Travis' family has been keeping the trail out to her grave clear. They moved a big rock onto the rock pile we made so it is pretty clearly marked from that alone. There is a marker though. They also moved a pine tree out and planted some flowers. Travis and I planted some more flowers so we will see how those all do, it's fairly shaded and there's wildlife around so some of the plants may not make it, but who knows. We planted tiger lilies (my favorite flower), amythest astilbes (they mean "I'll still be waiting"), lily of the valleys (they mean return to happiness). Fairly fitting meanings I suppose, we mainly tried to pick what looked like it might survive in a shady forest.



We finally settled on a name for the first baby I miscarried. Sojourner. We will eventually be getting a marker similar to Nova's and adding it to the rock at her grave. I just don't feel right without one but it has been an entirely different experience having had that miscarriage earlier, it was so different physically and I still don't know why or if it was a boy or girl. So it had taken longer to get around to dealing with that. It was almost like a triage scenario, deal with the grief from Nova's miscarriage, and now get around to this one that was a less traumatizing experience. But I like the meaning behind the name Sojourner. It does have a space connection, it means traveler. I've found a couple quotes I like a lot. "We are sojourners and not settlers for life on this earth." But my favorite and probably on the marker we will use a quote from Sojourner Truth, "I'm not going to die, I'm going home like a shooting star."

Looking forward to: Getting to the 3rd trimester, sometime around week 27 or 28 depending on how you count things. 

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

24 Weeks Pregnant

How preggo I am: 24 weeks! Well over halfway even if I go late.

24 weeks 

I'm so pregnant I can do a selfie and see the bump still.

Baby size: Papaya or eggplant sized. Last week he was a "bunch of grapes" which is probably the most vague sizing ever. Besides dill pickle. He's about 1.3 lbs and over a foot long. Also a cool milestone, if I were to give birth to him now, he'd have a 50/50 shot. Not great chances and I want to keep him in there much longer, but it's better than 0% chance and that's comforting given the placenta situation and my irritable uterus and the past miscarriages.

Morning sickness: I'm getting rid of this header! I think it's really gone.

Food cravings/aversions: Nothing super dramatic really. That's been one of my symptoms that hasn't been as strong this time around. We've been giving Blue Apron a shot and I am enjoying food once again, it is lovely. I wish I'd tried it sooner when I was feeling sick and meal planning was the worst. But I think it will come in handy when we have a new baby and shopping gets more logistically difficult. I don't like the waste but I'm trying to recycle and compost what I can and I do a lot of other environmentally friendly things in a lot of other places in my life.

Other symptom: Heartburn/acid reflux. My throat feels like the volcano in Hawaii right now. Totally the same as with Lyra, I'm betting this baby will have hair when he's born too! That's one pregnancy superstition that's actually true. The hormones that cause the heartburn also help promote the baby hair growth. Not 100% correlation but still.

Also, I had one of my bad headaches that made me puke so hard I burst a bunch of tiny blood vessels in my face. That was a new experience.

Braxton hicks are totally a part of all my life again. Also I feel so huge and my bellybutton is popped out like a turkey timer already. This summer is going to be rough.

Movement: So my prediction is this baby will be early and huge. (I'm fully aware predicting this means he will actually be 2 weeks late and like 5 pounds tiny.) Also, this is one strong baby. My midwife felt him kick last week and was surprised at how strong he was for that early. It's already been a while now that I can see my belly shake and move when he does. If I hadn't had so many ultrasounds and been tracking my period closely, I'd be convinced I was further along than I thought. I had an anterior placenta with Lyra and I only now really am realizing how much that must have muffled her movement and I'm a little afraid how hard this one is going to kick later on, it already verges on painful occasionally. And honestly, even with the different placenta locations, I think this baby is stronger. 

Weight gain: 10 pounds, about. I must just gain it all in the end. I want to say with Lyra the only time I found out, I was up roughly 30 pounds at 34 weeks. I gained only 5 the first half of this pregnancy and I've gained 5 in the last 4 weeks. So I'm a little nervous about that but I'm wondering if he just had a big growth spurt and I'll feel less stretched out for a few weeks before repeating that cycle. I definitely think I look about a month bigger when I look at Lyra pregnancy comparison photos. 

Sleep: What is that? Between toddlers, insomnia, headaches, and having to pee, I just don't much.

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Mood: Nothing too extraordinary to report.

Names: TBD. Finley Everett or Finley Oswin are in the running I think.

Lyra stats: Potty training is the worst. It's going better than the last shot but still not super amazing. It is so much worse than the diaper stage. I can't wait until we are through it. I'm thankful we have so little carpet. But I swear, some days my entire day is cleaning up after animals and small people. I must wash my hands 100 times a day.

I have won the vegetable battle though. I tried everything and finally went back to trying baby puree pouches of fruit and veggies mixed. She used to hate them. Now if I bribe her with bite sized fiber cookies, she'll eat a pouch or two a day. That's my parenting philosophy though, something didn't work at all 6 months ago? The kid HATED it 4 months ago? Try it again in desperation anyway and see what happens. More likely to work if it's advice someone has been giving you and you've been telling them doesn't work for your kid. The more strongly your kid hates whatever it was, the more they'll love it when you try again. I question my sanity all the time. Lyra went from eating no vegetables to scarfing down a package of pea and kale and apple puree for breakfast with almost no bribery. She's like, "Why have you never offered me this delicious food before?" Oh, I don't know, because I have offered every day of your life and thrown away so much food and therefore money trying to feed you? It's obnoxious. But whatever, she eats vegetables in puree form now at least.

Best moment this week: Well, Lyra likes to kiss and hug my belly and talk about how baby brother is in there which is the most adorable thing ever.

I didn't write about the anatomy scan yet, oops. I didn't realize I hadn't updated. Baby still looks great, he is measuring ahead of my last period due date (right on track with my very first ultrasound putting his due date at 9/22) and a little behind this one I'm sticking with, my 9/19 due date that the OB will go off of if it comes down to placenta placement deciding my delivery. My placenta is still covering my cervix, unfortunately. It did move from covering by 1.6 cm to just 0.6 cm though. So I'm getting another scan at 30 weeks to see if it moves off my cervix fully. The good news is, my OB says he's comfortable with me laboring at the hospital if my placenta moves off my cervix with not even the 1 cm limit, just as long as I'm not bleeding. So all I need is a little more than 0.6 cm and I can give labor a shot. Plus I really want 10 weeks of not stressing about bleeding or early labor. He did way however, that his partner at the practice doesn't want you to labor with your placenta less than 2 cm away. I was reminded though, that I can always say no, let me try labor, if I show up at the hospital with a placenta in that gray 2 cm area and she's the doctor on call. I'm hoping it doesn't have to come down to arguing about it but I guess we will see.

In other news, I was right. My uterus is shaped slightly abnormally. It is in fact mildly heart shaped just like I was suspecting. Apparently though, it's shape is either classified as a normal variant or the most mild abnormal variant in the same category as bicornuate. Doesn't seem to be associated with any negative reproductive effects. However, I was right. That OB who blew me off, was not. I'm a firm believer in advocating for yourself and pushing back when you're blown off, it's happened to me time and time again. I'm glad this is the normal or only slightly abnormal variant that doesn't seem to be linked to negative pregnancy outcomes, but I'm mad that it's something I had to repeatedly ask to have checked and wasn't checked for until now. I wanted to know this information before getting pregnant again for a reason, peace of mind and being fully informed about my chances of another miscarriage. Good thing I got lucky on this one.

Looking forward to:  We are taking a trip to Michigan next week. Lyra will be excited to see everyone and it will be a nice break. 

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

20 weeks, 4.5 months, HALFWAY!!!

How preggo I am: 20 weeks, I'm halfway there! I got busy/distracted from blogging the past couple weeks, oops.

20 weeks

Baby size: Banana sized, about 6.5 in from head to bottom or 10 inches from head to feet. And about 10.2 oz.

Morning sickness: So morning sickness seems to be essentially gone except for a random bit here and there. However, when I have the headaches hit, crazzzzy nausea.

Food cravings/aversions: Nothing super dramatic really.

Other symptom: Braxton Hicks are back the last couple weeks. So far they aren't super intense or frequent but it basically confirms to me that they probably will be later on. So that could be interesting with my placenta location currently. So far it hasn't been a big deal but it makes me extra nervous. I'm also preemptively annoyed for the lecture on hydration I'm sure to get if I have to go in to the hospital. In fairness, typical Braxton Hicks (BH, I'm abbreviating, I hate typing that every time) are supposed to go away with hydration and rest. However, mine don't seem to follow that pattern. Plus, if I have too full of a bladder, it triggers more so the hydration line is a hard one to walk. With Lyra I had to go in to the hospital at 34 weeks for persistent BH (around every 6-8 minutes or so if I recall correctly) I had a less than pleasurable experience. There was one nurse in particular who insisted I was dehydrated and was kind of condescending about it. Then it took 4 tries to get an IV in (I was freezing and stressed out). After chugging a liter of water and getting a bag of IV fluids I swelled up like a water balloon and they came back to tell me we'd have to try something else because contractions were still at 5-7 apart. I just would have appreciated a, "Sounds like you're doing the right thing trying to stay hydrated, lets give IV fluids a shot just in case before trying something more drastic."  Instead of, "No, that 32 ounces of herbal tea you had in the last hour is dehydrating and you shouldn't be drinking that." That's not how it works. And it should be noted that wasn't even close to my full fluid and water intake for the day and I had made that clear. Anyway, just something that frustrated me immensely.

I'm also just pretty frustrated lately with the lack of treatment I've had for these headaches. I have my anatomy scan tomorrow and I'm going to see if the OB can be helpful while I'm there. But anyway, I've tried muscle relaxers, tylenol, every gentle natural remedy I've ever heard of and I just can't deal anymore. I had a particularly bad day when I was doing my allergy testing. I had to drive an hour away extremely early in the morning. I woke up with a horrible headache I'd had off and on for a few day. My morning went like this, slept crappy from about 3 am onwards because I was in so much pain. Gave up at around 4:45 and got out of bed. Threw up maybe 3 times before trying a shower to see if that helped. It didn't. Threw up another 2 or 3 times in between trying to get ready and get the animals fed and car packed for the day out with Lyra. Finally, woke Lyra up about 6:15, tossed her in the car and tried to leave around 6:30. I have to give it to Lyra. She was amazing that day. No tantrums, endless patience with being in the car, the stroller, and doctors offices all day. I don't know what I would have done had she been a monster. Anyway though, I don't make it out of the driveway before throwing up again (luckily I foresaw this possibility and had bags ready). About halfway through the drive it started to occur to me just how fuzzy I was feeling and I realized I probably shouldn't be driving but too late now. Plus, I really didn't want to be charged 500 for the allergy appointment if I didn't even make it. I literally could not concentrate on anything other than "My head hurts so bad," it was not ok. Then I threw up again as soon as I parked the car. My pain scale at this point is early labor, active labor, these fucking headaches, transition/contractions with broken water bag, and then wisdom teeth removal, for reference.  At this point I was in touch with Travis (who was 3 hours away) to let him know I wasn't sure I'd make it home and was debating the ER or urgent care, but I was going somewhere. The allergy test was actually helpful because the needles were almost comfortable in distracting from my headache. That was anothwr experiwnce that made me think about how not normal being in that much pain is. Once I finished the allergy testing I was feeling ok enough to drive home and I figured I should take advantage of that window and get myself back to Fernley. From there I went straight to urgent care. By the time I was seen at around 1, I was finally keeping down fluids and I'd managed maybe 8 oz. Somehow that was enough to have me hydrated enough they didn't need to give me fluids (see previous rant about hydration and why I was so frustrated with that ER visit during Lyra's pregnancy). I don't understand how that's possible, but whatever. I was having some Braxton Hicks by then too because I wasn't drinking enough, I was super stressed, and frustrated, and in pain. But I was essentially told, sorry, here's some Zofran for the nausea but you just have to live with it. So I went home and basically spent the rest of the day crying on and off because I cannot just live with it. So far I haven't had another headache as bad but they've been pretty consistently a problem for like 6 years now so I'm over it. I did just find out antidepressants can be used to treat pain which I've never heard of before but seems legit, so that's an option I'm probably going to pursue since I'd like to avoid narcotics, especially since I'm limited by pregnancy and breastfeeding for a while. And frankly, the pain all the time, gets to you after a while. It makes me angry and upset and stressed. The antidepressant part of the antidepressants are a great side effect to consider. And the Zofran never seemed to help with morning sickness but this time it did seem to help with headache nausea. So that's going in my treatment plan for myself for sure. I still had a horrendous headache the entire next day, but I stopped vomiting and feeling sick once I had the Zofran. It didn't fix things for me, but that was a  HUGE step. I also felt like much less of a crazy person after talking to a friend who has dealt with similar chronic pain issues. I felt like someone finally got it and understood that I can't just deal with it or live with it. It's frustrating to have something you have to manage, not something that can be fixed, if that makes sense. Like I can't just take something and be better, it always comes back. Anyway, that's basically the biggest thing that I'm trying to live life around these days.

Movement: Quite a bit pretty consistently, I can feel him from the outside now!

Weight gain: 5ish pounds, I feel a lot bigger than I look, I think. I'm definitely starting to feel sore and it's harder to move already.

Sleep: One morning recently I was at least half awake past 3 am and puking in my hands by 4:30 am before I could make it to the bathroom. So pretty restful. The cat also tried to murder me last night, she kept attempting to sleep on my face or chest. I'm actually looking forward to newborn sleep right now.

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Mood: I've been a wee bit grouchy lately (see previous rant about headaches and pain). But I got to see my parents last week which was really nice and my dad put tile in the master bedroom and bathroom.

Names: Trying to name a baby is the worst.

Lyra stats: We're trying potty training again. She's not napping much. I don't want to talk about it. I love her so much, but honestly, I don't know that I'll miss the toddler years. I miss the 1 year old stage. I even thought that at the time, it wasn't all hindsight, that I really liked that age. She could do some cool stuff but she didn't insist on "I do it myself" for every single task.  And I think I'm going to like the preschool/kindergarten age. I really enjoy when she's learning things or actually talking about things that make sense. But I feel like toddler and preteen are gonna be the ones I just don't particularly enjoy. I cannot tell you how much of my day I hear indecipherable whining and how ragey it makes me feel to argue with someone about the stupidest things you've never even thought of. Like at nap today she refused to turn off her light. She always turns it off and I know better than to try it. But she absolutely refused. So I did it. And it was fine, she was happy and I thought it was a miraculous changing of our routine. Then 2 minutes after I left the room she had a full on meltdown about how she didn't get to turn off her light. It's never an argument you can win with logic or even with some crazy made up shit, that's the thing that makes you die on the inside a little.

Lyra had a blast with my parents though. She loooooves "bald guy" (she seriously calls him that, it's fantastic) and Nana. Plus I think they bore her less than I do so she was tired out and well behaved (ish) this week. Except the one night she kept us all up for 3 hours in the middle of the night.

She got to go see some big rigs this week at a local event. Her favorite was the police truck that had a K-9 unit. She got to set off the sirens and when the police officer asked her if she was pulling over mommy or daddy, she said daddy. She keeps mentioning it too.

Best moment this week: My mom tried to steal my midwife's purse. Seriously. I took her to my appointment because if I get my way, I'll get a home birth and my midwife and mother will both be there. But as we were walking out to the car, I notice my mom is holding a new bag, in addition to her purse. "I thought it was yours!" Right. I mean, not like I'm carrying my bag. My midwife wasn't phased. She barely looked up when I returned it with a, "I'm so sorry, my mom thought this was mine and tried to steal it." She just laughed and said that would have been less than ideal. At least my midwife knows what she's getting into now.

Other Random Stuff: In typical fashion, I managed to schedule the anatomy scan for the day I miscarried for the first time last year. Fucking awesome. Hopefully it just all goes well and no big deal, at least I won't be feeling too mopey. But if there's any bad news, what a great double whammy. But I'm a superstitious person unfortunately so it's just not an amazing feeling.

We toured the second hospital this week. It wasn't bad either, just not my plan. I'm torn between the two options, I think depending on the scenario, I'd go to either. I think if I have a planned c-section on the earlier side (say if the OB thinks with my placenta previa we need to go at 36 weeks or something) then I'd lean towards the bigger one with the higher level NICU. I also think that might be where I'd head if I have preterm labor scares at all. But if its a later c-section (say planned at 38 weeks or something) I'd probably just prefer to stick to the smaller place. And if I get to attempt a vaginal birth in the hospital, definitely the smaller place with birth tubs and wireless fetal monitoring. So we will see.

And the last random thing. I don't recall what all I've mentioned in my blog, but at one ultrasound (I believe it was after the 2nd miscarriage) there was a note made in the report about a possible bicornuate uterus. Meaning its kind of divided into two parts, you can do your own google. Now from my understanding, if I do have one, it is really mild and just kind of heart shaped or has a septum or something. They're harder to diagnose during pregnancy because everything stretches. And if you do have one, you're at higher risk for miscarriage or preterm labor and higher risk for birth defects or bad presentation of the baby at birth (breech, etc). My midwife said having Lyra at full term was a sign against me having one and said even if I did, it was likely not severe, not a problem. She doesn't do ultrasounds, I get sent out elsewhere for those, so she didn't personally check. I'm pretty ok with that answer but I did try to go to an OB and ask because I wanted to know before getting pregnant again because I was pretty nervous after 2 miscarriages. The OB I saw then wouldn't even look at the old report let alone do another ultrasound. So I dropped it, I had the genetic test explaining one miscarriage and Lyra as proof that I could carry a baby to term. I wasn't too worried, mostly curious but still, I iust wanted to know. So now, when I went to my midwife for this last appointment she measured my fundal height (where the top of the uterus is in your stomach, you can feel it from the outside) and said, "Huh, that's kind of funny, it's all over on the right, I've only ever seen that in the mom's I've had with a bicornuate uterus." When I brought up the ultrasound again, she said it was worth mentioning to the OB I'm seeing now to see what he thinks. She still wasn't concerned about it, at this point I'm not really either, I'm just mildly annoyed that I did ask about it earlier and it wasn't checked when that was probably the only time it would have been seen, when I wasn't pregnant. It also would explain why I often felt like I had a lopsided stomach during BH contractions with Lyra. At the time I chalked it up to her positioning, I didn't even think to mention it. I cannot recall if it was mostly all on the right side with her too, enough time has passed and it wasn't on my radar that my uterus could be shaped a little different. This time around I already had noticed, before this appointment and conversation with my midwife, that my BH kind of go lopsided to the right. I didn't think it was too odd, like I said, that's what I was used to. Plus they're still on the lighter side for BH and my uterus is smaller than full term so they aren't really something I'm always paying attention to. But I distinctly remember noticing it, and I definitely am noticing now. I also wondered if Lyra was positioned just the slightest bit funny because things are slightly asymmetrical and that's why I struggled so much pushing her out. Zero evidence for that, but I've wondered now. And could just be that's how my uterus sits and it is normal shaped. I dunno, basically.

Looking forward to: Seeing the baby tomorrow! And with any luck, the placenta moved. I need 2 cm off my cervix for my home birth. But I only need 1 cm to attempt a vaginal hospital birth. I would gladly take that option. Wish me luck!

Thursday, April 12, 2018

17 Weeks

How preggo I am: 17 weeks. I've been pregnant for 35 of the last 52 weeks. That is 67.3%  of a year already. Whenever I feel whiny and annoyed about that, I try and remember it's ok, that's fair. I can be less than thrilled about it.

Baby size: Pomegranate or turnip sized. About 5 inches long from head to bottom and 5 ounces.  That seems crazy huge.

If you're on a phone, check out this baby hand estimation. It's pretty nifty I think. And kind of a mind blowing visual when you think about it. 

Morning sickness: Quite a bit better actually. Occasional moments but generally just morning and pretty manageable (unless I have a bad headache or have to clean up an animal mess then it's vomiting for sure). So getting better a good 10 weeks before it did with Lyra. But I refuse to let my guard down. I am braced for dealing with it for much longer because who knows how next week will be.

Food cravings/aversions: Mostly I'm just able to eat food again with regularity and it's nice. I'm not sure I really am at the really enjoying food again point, but I'll take it.

Other symptom: Well not pregnancy related but, allergies. I have never had such terrible seasonal allergies as I do in Nevada. Like, it is actually a factor in whether or not I want to live here long term. It's truly that bad. I have to have tissues with me at all times, and mornings are the worst. I feel so gross going out in public when I'm sneezing and so snotty. I've tried nasal sprays and I'm taking elderberry and the over the counter antihistamines...I tried it all. I'm going in for an allergy test next week and probably will need allergy shots. I'm trying to remind myself that the (excessively) high cost is worth it for not being miserable half of the year but it's really frustrating. I'm an example of why living without health insurance would be terrifying.

My headaches/neck pain is actually manageable this week. But it's this insanely long list of things and rituals to help. I have my pillow I must use but that doesn't 100% cut it and I'm researching replacing. I think that would make the next biggest difference. I still am icing and heating my neck whenever I can. Tylenol whenever I think I feel a headache. I've been using some peppermint and Lavender oils which at least feel soothing topically. I can't really use the kinesio tape frequently because it irritates my skin, unfortunatly. And Travis has to give me a massage at least once a day. And it isn't a cutesy massage like you'd give your new partne to make them like you. It's this super intense one where you'd think he's angry with me and I'm shocked he hasn't left bruises. He stops when his hands hurt, not when I can't handle it anymore. It's reminiscent of the osteopath treatment, he's just not professionally trained, obviously. But also he doesn't charge 400 dollars every time and he's available every day. And on top of all that I try to watch my posture really closely and not drive too much or sit too long or lay down too long, etc. It's kind of insane how much effort I'm putting into babying my neck.

Movement: Definitely! Week 14 to 15 I had a few questionable twitches that I'm still unsure about. Maybe, but probably not, that's still really early. Week 15 to 16 I had little "I'm 90-95% sure that was baby but this is way different than with Lyra so I'm confused" movements that in hindsight were definitely baby. This week (16 to 17) I was positive I was feeling him when I sat fairly still and paid attention. Going into week 18 I'm pretty confident I'll be able to feel him from the outside on occasion this week, if I'm not already, there were a few I couldn't tell if I was feeling from the outside or just from the inside, it's kind of hard to tell at first. I think the main difference that is letting me feel him earlier than I felt Lyra, is the placenta location. This one is mainly posterior (minus the stupid part that's covering my cervix...) and Lyra's was anterior, which means in the front of the uterus and therefore muffling movement. I think that's why I can feel this baby earlier, and why it took me longer to decide I was actually feeling him. He was a lot smaller than Lyra was when I started feeling her. With Lyra I was 19 weeks before I felt anything and I went from, "NOPE. Nothing." to for sure feeling her move in a single day. And a week after that I could visibly see her move in my belly. I've also noticed I feel him less consistently than I felt Lyra. Lyra started moving and has not stopped, up to this day, she has not stopped moving for 30 seconds except very occasionally while sleeping. I attribute this to both his size/the earliness I felt him and the desperate hope/desire to have a chiller and lower maintenance child who does things like sit still and sleep. Plus also I'm so busy keeping up with Lyra that I can't always pay attention. Sorry, kid, get used to that I guess.

It's reassuring to start feeling him move, for sure. But I also feel like I should acknowledge the fact that it hasn't erased my fears about miscarriage and loss and I still have some feelings about it that I didn't have when I had Lyra and I'd never lost a baby. I don't really know how to put it in words exactly, but it feels like I'm a lot less naive maybe. I have thankfully never lost a baby this far along and hopefully won't ever have to do that. But I can't help but think how horrible it was at just 12 (10 weeks since it was a missed miscarriage) and have in the back of my head an idea of how horrible it would be now. Not to say that anyone who has had an early miscarriage had it any easier than someone with a later one. Everyone is different and for me, the late miscarriage was so physically hard and mentally dramatic and traumatizing that it's just something I've thought abouti. So it's just my personal feeling on my experience of it, I guess.  It's both reassuring to get this far and much more terrifying than you might expect. And I wouldn't wish it on anyone, I'm just jealous of people who never have to experience it firsthand.

Weight gain: Possibly nothing? I thought 1 or 2 pounds last week but maybe not. I also don't know if my scale is accurate.  This is why I'm trying to stay not too bothered about weight gain. The baby is growing just fine, so who really cares how the weight goes. I didn't track with Lyra and now I'm kind of curious if I gained much at first, I just assumed I did but maybe I didn't until later and just grew a bump without weight gain. On that note, I'd really like to share this link my doula shared that illustrates that bump size doesn't actually mean anything and doesn't affect the baby's size.  There's a lot of misconceptions about it out there and I hate seeing mom's get insulted or lectured for being too big or too small. And also it's a good illustration of how someone could be pregnant and not know, that happens and I absolutely believe those people.



Lyra helped with photos this week. 

Sleep: Lyra is something else this week. I shared this video on my page but it's too true to not share again. She tried to fake cough and give me a "Mommy I'm sick," lie and that was the final straw that broke me about nap time. I finally got her to nap for the first time this week by pulling out the pack and play and telling her she'd have to sleep in there if she couldn't handle napping in her bed. I wasn't even bluffing.  Guess who went down in under 30 minutes with little effort on my part? But yeah, sleep has been a struggle this week.

Also my dreams are crazy still. I had one where Oprah was giving me all sorts of gifts that I had to store in the stroller. The best part was it was all weird contraptions to use to take random new drugs. So weird. And then I had one the next night where I was in a bank filled with roller coasters. All of a sudden I had the,  "I think I'm dreaming," thought. Usually at that point I get to fly around for a while which is always neat. Not this time. This time dream Miriam was like, "I have to pee but if this is a dream I don't want to wet the bed. But if I'm not, I really need to find a toilet. Maybe I'll do something weird and see how people react to decide if I'm dreaming first." And that's how I came to have a dream where I wandered around with no pants on in a bank filled with roller coasters. Unfortunately, my dream self couldn't remember if it was normal or not to be in public without pants on, so that didn't help me figure out anything. Last night I dreamed I had an ultrasound that projected a virtual newborn sized baby next to me. That was kinda weird but also kinda cool and thankfully, not creepy.

More stories loaded
Mood: Normal unless it's nap or bedtime and then I feel like Te-Ka from Moana. 100% lava monster at those times.

Names: Still Finley Everett or Everett Finley are the two in the running. I really like the nickname Finn but I really like Everett as a first name. And Travis likes Finley as a first name. So it's probably just up in the air for the next 21 to 25 weeks

And on another post loss feeling about things, just something I have been thinking about and trying to sort out exactly what it is I'm even thinking or feeling...it's been weird (again a moment I'm not sure there is a word) adjusting to this baby being a boy. I just have feelings about it. Knowing the last baby was a girl, there's both some good and bad feelings finding out this one is a boy. I think it was a bit of a relief because I did not want to feel any sort of "this is my baby I'm getting back," and sort of push away or minimize the last loss. And I don't know what the first baby I lost was, maybe that was a boy, but since I don't know, it's less concrete. There's also the other side to it that is sad because Lyra was getting sister. But now she isn't. But again, I don't know if she was getting a brother that first time around. And either way it was always someone different regardless of anatomy and chromosomes. Not to mention all my normal feeling I have about gender and sex and how I'm raising Lyra and how I will raise this one with the main idea being they're just little people either way and the not or girl thing is not the defining characteristic to sum them up anyway.

Lyra stats: My best Lyra story was the nap one this week. I did take her to see Paw Patrol Live this week which she enjoyed. It was a stage production of one of her favorite cartoons. I think her mind was blown that these characters actually exist.

What I miss: Lyra taking naps reliably. I hope this stage passes.

Best moment this week: Honestly, probably just not having a terrible headache once this week. I had 2 or 3 but they were the types that I actually got to go away and they never progressed to the vomiting stage. I don't remember any other week that's happened so far since getting pregnant.

Looking forward to: Summer. That feeling will last maybe another 8 days until it gets hot. Also my parents are coming to visit the week after next which will be fun. My dad is going to help us tile the master bath and bedroom (who puts carpet in a bathroom???) which will be so nice to get done.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

16 Weeks: Doula's and Hospital Tours

How preggo I am: 16 weeks

Baby size: So the majority of sources say avocado sized which is what my phone app said last week. My phone app now says dill pickle. How useless. That's the vaguest description I ever heard. So somewhere between avocado and dill pickle of unknown size.

Morning sickness: Still feeling it. Mostly it seems to be in the actual early morning now and it fades after a bit. I run into trouble really only when I have a headache now. Which is like at least 1 out of 3 days. If I have a headache then I feel more nauseous which makes me throw up. That makes my head hurt even worse which makes me feel more sick and I get locked in this cycle of not being able to keep anything down for a couple hours. So I have a pretty rigid routine of trying to ice or heat my neck any chance I get, several times a day. And sort of self osteopath treatment. Painful massage basically. It sucks.

Food cravings/aversions: I've eaten way too much corn on the cob. I can't stop, it's so good. And our Easter dinner was basically a hodgepodge of cravings I had. Currently, I'm on the hunt for rosquillas, this Nicaraguan pastry thing that I think is corn based and has some sort of sweet stuff baked onto the top.

Other symptom: The heartburn/acid reflux stuff is starting up. I'd gladly trade morning sickness for that though.

Movement: Nothing yet I don't think. Every now and again I get a questionable maybe baby feeling. But also I have this crazy weird muscle twitch that's been coming and going for weeks now up by my left rib. It's crazy, it's like having hiccups in my ribs. 100% not baby, just super weird.

Weight gain: 1 or 2 pounds, but I definitely popped this week. With Lyra I remember it being more gradual. I feel like there was longer of the "Do I look pregnant or not?" stage. This one it was like that but then one morning I woke up and it was like, "Yeah, no...I can't suck that in anymore." And now I look for sure pregnant all the time. I also found a pretty cool breakdown of weight gain. It makes me feel tired just thinking of all the work that goes into making that stuff.

For an average 25 to 35 pound gain (super generic blanket reccomendation there by the way) here's the breakdown.

Baby: 6-8 lbs
Uterus: 1-2 lbs
Placenta: 1-2 lbs
Amniotic fluid: 2-3 lbs
Blood: 3-4 lbs
Maternal fat/protein storage: 8 to 10 lbs
Breasts: 1-2 lbs
Other bodily fluid (I'm really curious what this is exactly): 3-4 lbs

I think my body has given in to the inevitable.

Sleep: I've been done sleeping through the night for the next few years since finding out I was pregnant basically. I'm mentally accepting it slowly.

Mood: Eh, not too bad? I feel more mood swingy than usual but less grumpy generally (I think?) since I've felt better some days.

Names: I think barring some drastic change of heart, there's 2 names in the final running. Really at this point it's the order that's up for debate. We had originally had Orion tentatively picked out as a boy name since way back, before we knew if Lyra was a boy or girl. But we're still undecided on the number of kids we'll have eventually.  If we have more than one boy, we'll run out of constellation/space boy names anyway since Travis has questionable taste and doesn't agree that Draco and Scorpius would work. If we have another girl, the top favorite name (Lyra' s almost name) has never been a space name. Plus when you get down to actually naming kids, you change your mind from theoretical names a bit. I know we went with Nova for the last loss which is still kind of a theme but eh, I'm ok with just going with individual favorites over over-arching themes. So anyway, this boy is (99% probably) either Everett Finley or Finley Everett. Travis and I are not in agreement about which is best right now.

Lyra stats: She's been hanging out with me too much. I have a tendency towards drama lately when I feel crappy and I may have said the phrase, "I'm dying," during one or several of the puking/headache episodes. Lyra was getting fussy in the car this week and all of the sudden started complaining loudly, "I'm dying! I'm dying, I'm dyyyyying!!!" when I wouldn't let her out of the carseat on the highway. It was too funny. Also due to an unfortunate accidental mispronounciatuon by Travis while reading Mulan, Lyra thinks the main villain is called "Sham-Poo."

What I miss: I want a beer.

Best moment this week: Well Travis got a promotion and is now Chief Metallurgist at the mine he's been at since we moved here. Which is quite an accomplishment 6 years out of school, well before he's 30. So that's cool.

Also, I found a doula I want to use. A doula is the emotional and physical (not medical!) support during pregnancy, labor, postpartum and even loss, that you might have from female family members or close friends back when humans lived more in close communities and everyone birthed at home. Not that I don't have family and friends but some aren't close by and having ones who are trained is helpful. I really like her and hopefully will either have extra support no matter which way my birth turns out. I also think I really am going to do my doula training after this baby is a bit less of a fetus/newborn. I was totally derailed in that plan by moving. But that was possibly for the best, I couldn't have handled it while having miscarriages.

I went on a hospital tour as well and probably picked which hospital I will use if necessary. I'm hoping for a homebirth but a c-section is still very much a possibility. If my placenta moves off my cervix but isn't very far off, I may well want or need to be in the hospital if I'm going to attempt a vaginal birth. Or if some unexpected other complication comes up, who knows. So I want to know all my options and have my research done for as many scenarios as I can. I'm still waiting on another tour at the end of the month of the other hospital my OB uses to make a final decision. This one I just went to is the smaller of the two but there were several things I really liked and my doula had some helpful advice and things to consider. This hospital is smaller and less busy. The OR, nursery, labor and delivery rooms, and postpartum rooms are all on the same floor. There isn't a limit on how many people I can have with me during labor, at the other hospital you're limited to three. That seems like a lot until you consider I want a doula and birth photographer, plus my mom and Travis' mom may both be around in addition to Travis. This hospital also has wireless fetal monitoring (so I could move during labor) and tubs. The larger one doesn't, which surprised me. The way the doula put it, "When this hospital had money, they put it into things to make women more comfortable and not new paint to make it look fancy like the other hospital." That's stuck in my head for sure. Plus, the doula said she's had more luck with being allowed as a second person in the OR during c-sections. Not a garuntee, but that's a big thing for me. If Travis has to go with the baby to the NICU, I don't want to be left alone, wondering what the fuck is happening, I want someone who's priority is me and can help me get info and explain what's happening. Plus, the nurse we met there was really nice and mentioned she loved working with the doula I picked out.

Looking forward to: Movement! I want to start feeling this one for sure. I felt Lyra for sure about 3 weeks from this point and her placenta was in the way. I want some dang baby kicks already. It's been almost exactly a year since I found out I was pregnant the first time since having Lyra. It was Easter last year. It's weird to think about how much longer the process has been this time around compared to having Lyra. I've been pregnant 34 weeks out of the last 52. Only 22-26 left. SHEESH.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

15 Week Update

How preggo I am: 15 weeks. About. Finally have somewhat settled on a due date. Which is obviously still just a guess but whatever. My last period due date was the 26th of September and the ultrasounds have put it at the 22nd, the 16th, and the 19th respectively. I think my best guess that we'll probably go with this the 19th. He's consistently measuring ahead and I got my positive test soooo early. Plus that's the easiest to remember. I switched over weeks on Wednesdays with Lyra and with this baby up to now, that date is exactly a week ahead. Good middle guess date all 4 guesses considered. Clearly Lyra was my prompt type A baby who measures right on and arrived on her due date. She takes after me and this one is possibly a Travis clone. He'd prefer to be cryptic and not inform anyome of his plans.

Baby size: Apple or avocado sized. About 4 inches long from head to butt. (Crown to rump, scientifically speaking.)

Morning sickness: Yes. Still. Bleh. Plus, my neck has been bugging me a lot more (seems to get a lot worse during pregnancy unfortunately) which leads to headaches which leads to more naseau.

Food cravings/aversions: Nothing specific to be honest. But smells have kind of been a craving. Basil smells excessively good. And Lavender. I bought like 4 lavender scented things lately.

Other symptom: Nothing too much, the naseau and headaches kind of overwhelm everything else. I have started to have that weird sensation of feeling like there is an unyielding ball in my belly when I bend over or really have to pee or something. Which, makes sense, seeing as there basically is. I can recognize it as my uterus from remembering how it was with Lyra.  It's hard to describe but it's exciting that it's all feeling a bit more real like it's actually going to happen this time.

Weight gain: Nada. Though I do think I'm starting to get a real baby bump. About a week or 2 before I found it noticable with Lyra.

15 week bump, I can't suck it in any more than this these days.
This was me at 17 weeks with Lyra, for comparisons sake. 

Movement: Nothing yet but I'm hoping any day now. My placenta is posterior (in back) this time instead of in front like it was with Lyra.

Sleep: I swear if Lyra doesn't stop standing by my face quietly in the dark I'm going to start having nightmares. Like, just say something or poke me, don't just stand there quietly staring.

Mood: Well I was quite cheerful and relaxed when I got to go on my girls trip. A couple days relaxing by the coast in Sonoma. I had a whole spa day that I'm absolutely doing again if I have to have a c-section. I was distinctly not cheerful late last week when I went to the first check in visit at the OB. Now, I didn't actually get to meet him at that visit. Luckily after meeting him early this week, I don't mind him. I'd prefer my midwife/home birth plan but a backup is a good idea either way. Plus the extra appointments and checks are reassuring at this point. Anyway, the first visit turned out to be all paperwork and super oversimplified (for me at least, I'm pretty well informed when it comes to pregnancy basics, I've thoroughly done my research) pregnancy overview. The whole day was awful from the get go. First, I was running late because I had a horrendous headache/vomiting start to my morning. Then I got lost trying to find the office. By the time I showed up all hot and sweaty and without breakfast (I dropped it on the way out the door) I was 15 minites past my check in time. Still 15 minutes before my appointment but late nonetheless. I ended up waiting in the waiting room for 45 minutes anyway. And then nurse who was doing the intake appointment was clearly very anti-midwifery. She made a few comments that really rubbed me the wrong way. The worst was regarding the Panorama blood test I did a while ago. "I was just saying the other day that it's crazy they let midwives order that test. They'll just let anyone do it." I didn't even know how to react to that. I was also given a sheet on the benefits of breastfeeding. The top bullet point of the list of benefits for mom was, "helps with weight loss." Bottom of the list was "helps reduce risk of postpartum depression." Ummmm.....PRIORITIES, people. Reduces risk of cancers, helps minimize postpartum hemmoraghing, any of those seem to be a lot more important than dropping weight post baby but all were listed later. The sheet was printed from the local hospital system which is actually not the same system as the OB's office so I am going to have to look into where I need to complain about that bullshit. Just rearrange your bullet points for fuck's sake. Needless to say, I was not a particularly happy camper by the end of the day. By the end I was on the phone crying to my mother. But I do feel much better after meeting the OB. He seems like a decent doctor even if the attitude towards birth around here is not ideal.

Gender: Besides the DNA test, there was officially a penis on an ultrasound. I'm growing a pair of balls.

Lyra stats: This kid. I have another example of how she's definitely my mini me, type A little kid. So I went on my girl's trip and expected exciement when I came home because it was the longest we have ever been apart. And I got it, I'll give her that. But midway through our reunion, she noticed I hadn't put away my shoes and she insisted I take a pause from hugs so that she could put them back in the closet where they belonged.

Also, other random anecdotes. The falling apart baby monitor has been upgraded and now we can speak to her through an intercom like system on the new video monitor. When she gets out of bed and you tell her to lay back down and take a nap or go to bed, she kind of listens. She lays down immediately on the floor where ever she's at in her room. It's kind of hysterical.

She now says "Mommy" instead of "Mama" about half the time. Out of nowhere, I'm not sure where she learned it. I had not realized how much more whiny it's possible to make "Mommy" sound rather than "Mama." It has to be the "y" sound. I'm not a huge fan for the most part.

What I miss: not having debilitating neckpain. I'm basically attached to a heat or ice pack whenever possible and trying any sort of remedy I can think of. The latest is KT taping which surprisingly seems to help take the edge off. It's a lot stronger than I thought and almost seems like it acts a little like a brace. But if anyone knows any tips or weird suggestions for cures, let me know. I'd try witchcraft or Amazonian tree oils or basically anything at this point. Osteopathy helps somewhat but that's absurdly expensive. Chiropractic care seems to make it worse, last I tried. I'm probably getting a massage membership. I do have my muscle relaxers but those are last resort and can only be used if I'm not alone and can sleep all day. Anyway, neck pain is the worst.

Best moment this week: During the last ultrasound this week at the introductory back-up OB visit I got an extra ultrasound. This is the third one, I only got 3 total with Lyra, this one will get a minimum of 4, more if the placenta doesn't move by the 20 week scan. Anyway, Lyra had been at the emergency ultrasound for spotting and we told her it was her baby brother she could see. I told her again the morning of the ultrasound that we were going to see baby brother. So the instant the ultrasound picture popped up on the screen this time, without any prompting from anyone she yelled, "Baby brother!" and pointed at the screen. Soooo cute. She may actually be getting it.

Looking forward to: Hopefully finally just having a few mundane weeks. I'm sure that won't happen though.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Week 11-13 (I don't know), A Sex Party, & The Bleeding Scare Update

How preggo I am: Nearly 12 or 13 weeks. I was late on this supposed to be 11 week update for several reasons. First I had the headache from hell, then I figured I might as well wait until we announced the baby's sex, then I had spotting and was in crisis mode and didn't want to update until I had ultrasound results. The short story with that is baby is measuring ahead by 9 days, has a good heart rate and wiggles around already but I have placenta previa, where the placenta is covering the cervix. More on that later.

Baby size: Lemon sized which is a huge jump from the last time I wrote. That's according to the 13 week measurements from the ultrasound yesterday. Baby has little limbs and appendages and looks a lot more baby like. With a huge head. I can also feel the top of my uterus low on my stomach, I noticed earlier in the week.

Baby face

Morning sickness: Still hanging in there.  I'm hoping it goes away second trimester but realistically I'm betting I'm in for the long haul again.

Food cravings/aversions: Super cliche but I made Travis go buy like 4 types of pickles one evening.

Other symptom: I had the worst headache ever this week. It's been on and off for about a week and a half at this point. It set in hard for good on Wednesday afternoon and by Friday morning I was in urgent care. I ended up trying a muscle relaxer (safe for pregnancy, category B) and basically slept the day away and felt better by Saturday morning finally. It did come back with the stress from spotting on Sunday but I was too freaked out to take more meds, even though they were supposed to be safe. I took some last night though because I've had enough headache and I'm thoroughly convinced they aren't the cause of my spotting now. I'm hoping it's finally done now.

Weight gain: Nada. But I feel the bloat on and off for sure.

Mood: So stressed and not a good week overall. Sunday during the middle of our sex reveal party, the day before my birthday, which was also the day before family came to visit, a few days before my planned girls trip, a few days before the 12 week milestone where I last miscarried, basically the absolute worst time for it, I started spotting. I felt a gush and I was just like, "Nooooo, that can't be what I think it is." But sure enough when I went to the bathroom to check, blood. I freaked out harder than any of the previous times. Every time you just think, this can't possibly be happening. I started shaking and hyperventilating a bit and called Travis back to the bathroom to call the midwife and my friend who was at the party sans kids to come comfort me. Then I just tried to move on with the day and see how it went.  Luckily, my friends all know and I didn't have to pretend everything was perfect, so that worked out. Still a bummer to bring down my party mood a lot.

It just sucks the more often this happens because you feel less hopeful every time. I feel like I was less hysterically upset and more contingency planning from the get go. Like "Ok if this is another miscarriage, this is the plan, this is the testing to talk about, this is what I want to push to get done." Etc. It's way more morbid too, I immediately started thinking, this is how big the baby is, this is what you need to prepare yourself to see, potentially. Pack bags for the ER in case we need to go there in the middle of the night and notify the friends we would leave Lyra with. I knew I'd have trouble sleeping and Travis suggested unisom but I wanted to be alert enough to be able to differentiate between drowsy from drugs and drowsy from blood loss. Miscarriages really put a damper on your pregnancy experience.

But the ultrasound place got me in quickly at least. Baby is measuring even more ahead so I don't know yet if my due date will change. Measuring at 13 weeks instead of 11 weeks and 5 days. Wiggling a bit and a heart rate if 152. So that was a good birthday present even if the rest of the news wasn't. The complete placenta previa they found is very likely the reason I was spotting. And I may or may not keep spotting due to that. So that's a big bummer. Hopefully, the placenta moves but frankly, I have shitty luck lately and I don't want to bank on that and just be disappointed. So I'm processing that. And mentally preparing.  I had Lyra unmeducated at a birth center and it was a great experience. Pregnancy kind of sucks for me to be honest, and the birth thing was what I was looking forward to. With placenta previa you can't give birth vaginally and you don't want to go into labor because you'll bleed and put both yourself and the baby in danger. I had a fairly quick labor (at least the dilation part) with Lyra and we live 45 minutes from the hospital so that makes me nervous.

I just can't seem to 100% win in the placenta department. I had an anterior placenta with Lyra, not a big deal just a bummer because it dulls movement in the front at first so I had to wait longer to feel her move. Then with that second miscarriage I had retained placenta that landed me in the ER. Now this placenta previa. Stupid jerk placentas.

Obviously, I'm glad I have a healthy baby right now but my birth experience matters a lot too and I'm upset about possibly losing my homebirth and having a c-section. Not to mention the epidural part of birth and surgery are at the top of my list of "things I'm incredibly terrified of" and at the top of my "exactly how I do not want birth to go" list. The universe is testing me once again it would appear. I mean there's still hope but I'm preparing for my worst case scenario.

I got the double whammy ultrasound too. I had the bladder crushing stomach ultrasound and the awkward twat wand ultrasound both. "I'm just going to put this protective non latex covering on the wand." Let's just call it what it is, a condom on a stick, slathered in KY jelly. Plus I can't see the screen from that angle so where am I supposed to look? What am I supposed to do? Just  lay here and think about life? What a fun day to turn 29.

Gender: We had our sex party! It turned out ok, even with the drama. We had a taco bar and meatballs and weenies. I forgot to set out the pork for the tacos. My friend later was like, "I thought it was kind of weird you didn't have meat for the tacos but I didn't say anything." What a time to get polite on me.

I made everyone wear pins with their guesses.

Nuts or no nuts?

Turns out it's hard to make balloon penises and vaginas but an effort was made.

We had penis cookies and vagina fudge. Technically more like vulva fudge but whatever. They didn't turn out the best, they were mostly a little mangled with made for some great jokes.

The cookies and the slightly mangled fudge

 "The first batch turned out the best, there's nothing like your first vagina."

"Those ones just look like they went a few rounds with big red." (Referencing the giant red balloon penis Travis made out of those ballons you use to make balloon animals.)

"These ones are just fine if you dim the lights a little."

And everyone felt like terrible parents for letting their kids innocently eat the ginger snap penis cookies. I decorated with penis and sperm confetti  It's annoying how hard it is to find vagina confetti. And by that I mean, impossible. There's a kickstarter for some called "Clitter" but that's it.

The confetti

Right before the party started, Travis managed to drop a single piece of sperm confetti in the meatballs and weenies. We never did find it,  unfortunately. And we did our actual reveal with a baking soda/vinegar experiment.

We're having a boy! XY chromosomes this time. 

Lyra stats: Lyra scared the shit out of me one night this week. She sleeps in her own room but when she does wake up, she's generally loud, slamming her door and then mine and stomping down the hall like an elephant. So I know when she is on the way. But one night this week she went for stealth.  I rolled over and must have opened my eyes and half woke up. It was one of those times where your brain registers you're seeing something before you really process what's happening. All I knew was I woke up to someone standing in the dark next to my bed, staring at me. So I screamed, hit Travis to wake him, realized it was Lyra and yelled, "Oh my God Lyra what are you doing? Travis, put her back in bed!" and ran off to pee before I wet myself with my heart racing. I calmed down a bit, realized I'd scared Lyra and went to talk to her. But sheesh. One of my nightmares is waking with someone standing over me like that. It was terrifying.

Best moment this week: Reassurance that this baby is doing ok right now.  Both with the home Doppler and the ultrasound. That was nice to know this week. I feel like i made it past my last miscarriage mark

Looking forward to: My first visit with the midwife tomorrow, I have a lot of questions now. And the girls trip I'm going on this Thursday. It will tie with Vegas for the longest I've been away with Lyra and will be a weekend of relaxing, chatting, massages, spa treatments, and good food.