There’s a baby in there!

Somehow 24 weeks seems like a big deal. Mostly I can’t believe how it’s all flying by. It’s for real there’s a baby in there!

Weight gain: +10 lbs.

How I’m feeling: I feel really great most of the time. I just realized yesterday that I’m experience the 2nd trimester surge of energy. I’m motivated to do all kinds of projects around the apartment and cleaning way more than normal. I think this is called nesting. It took me awhile to realize because OMG I’m still tired and somewhat sleep deprived. (Simon deserves his own update soon)

The bump: I feel like I’m pregnant all of the time now. Which I’m enjoying. There were so many weeks where I didn’t have any outward signs. I look pregnant to the outside world now too – people aren’t hesitating to ask when I’m due.

Maternity clothes: Finally, my second favorite pair of maternity jeans fit. I like that I have a wardrobe I can wear.

Movement: We definitely have movement and Rob can feel it from the outside too.

photo-19

But these are all just the physical things. I am starting to mentally prepare for this baby to arrive now. I blogged Simon’s birth story here and here, and I have no interest right now in re-reading that. The aftermath of birth trauma alluded to here. My memories are bad enough, and my biggest goal is to avoid having another bad birth experience. I learned a lot from my birth experience with Simon, and I am putting some changes in place this time around.

As a VBAC candidate there are some things I’m opted out of, delivering with a midwife for instance. But I found an OB who I think I will like a lot – I’ve mostly been seeing her midwives for prenatal visits (which I prefer a lot) and kind of wish I’d looked for this type of practice with Simon. My goal again is for a med-free birth. But knowing that I can opt for an epidural if I choose at any point during labor. If I do need a repeat c-section my requests are to be given time to emotionally process the change in plan (unless medically dire) and to be allowed skin to skin time in the OR. Also, unless medically necessary there will no separation of me from the baby. Simon was held hostage in the nursery for no goo reason for more than five hours. I WILL NOT go through that again.

We hired a doula. My biggest regret from last time was not doing this, and I picked one who’s delivered with my doc before hoping that the experience will help me navigate the paths should we need medical intervention or a c-section. I don’t have time to take a class (also wish I had done a weekly instead of 1-day intensive before). I did get a Hypnobabies home course, which I’m hoping to actually start soon – but in the meantime am listening to the affirmation tracks.

I have hope that this will go well. A couple of blogland friends have recently had second births that were awesome. These ladies are my role models. I have no doubt that the trauma to myself surrounding Simon’s birth is what led to my trouble bonding with him. He was this baby, and he was mine, but I had a really hard time connecting with him emotionally until around 4 months maybe. I don’t want to go through that again. But at the same time, I worry – what if I do have a great experience and bond with Little Mister right away. Will I love him more? (I know this isn’t true and a bit of a reverse on “how can I ever love a second as much as the baby I already have” There is ALWAYS room for more love) I never want Simon to feel less because of my birthing experience – that experience is mine alone, and he is the bright awesomeness that resulted from it. But I wonder how I will deal with possibly very different emotions as I prepare to have a birthing experience that I can own, that will help to heal the emotional scars left behind.

I’ll close with this. In my mom’s bible study we are studying Hebrews. A couple of weeks ago the topic was fear – and I realized my biggest fear is not being there for my husband and kids. Not just physically, but emotionally too. So in the end all I can do is have faith that this baby will come into the world happy and healthy and in the way he is meant to. Birth trauma is real, but in the end all I can do is prepare myself as much as possible and to give birth without fear. Plans may change but in the end life is good.

the monday snapshot: a day at the zoo

Saturday I coerced my sick husband into trekking up to the Bronx with me and Simon, so we could go to the zoo. There is a Dinosaur Safari exhibit that I thought Simon would like since he love all things Dinosaur Train. I was right. Except for the T-Rex – he was a little too close for comfort. “It’s ok Simon, it’s scary, it’s ok Simon” is what Simon said over and over until we passed that part.

IMG_0616

IMG_0619

Then we watched the sea lions for awhile. But we were too late to “see sea lions do tricks” and there was no way we were sticking around until the next feeding time. We grabbed lunch, then off to the Butterfly Garden. This may have been Simon’s favorite part. Up close and personal. Then he saw the opportunity for these photos on the way out.

IMG_0621

IMG_0623

I do it MYSELF!

IMG_0624

OK then.

IMG_0625

A bunny rabbit! (Kind of, but not really).

IMG_0627

After the photos we took a quick trip to see the gorillas, then home for us.

IMG_0634

Two and a half hours is plenty of zoo for us. But a chilly fall weekend is the PERFECT time to go. I don’t think I’ve ever been when there were so few people. A not crowded zoo is my favorite kind.

the monday snapshot: home improvements edition

Saturday we took our semi-annual trek upstate-ish to the Stormville Flea Market. Again I took exactly three pictures while we were there. I’m too busy looking to take pictures, and this time we had the added fun of chasing a two year old who only wanted to find trains. Simon really lucked out though as we did come across a large bin of Thomas Toys, so he got some new fun pieces and a Harold Helicopter.

This post isn’t about that though. This is about what happens when you get home from the flea market. Also known as “before it gets better it gets a whole lot worse.” This is the state of our apartment Sunday afternoon.

photo 3

This happens because well, we found this great table to be used as a desk. And because it is a substantial piece of furniture we really need to not have it sitting in the middle of the living room. So we took down the ladder desk (peeking around the corner there) and ALL of the stuff on it. But then we needed to buy the new shelves to go over the new table so we went to Home Depot.

But while we were there we figured we might as well get the last pieces to put the air conditioner covers back up. And some steel wool and polish and rubber stoppers for the new high chair. And well it grew. And so did the mess.

Then the shelf brackets we bought needed a different kind of anchor to be sturdy enough to actually hold books. So trip two to HD happened. Really it looks great now that this corner is almost done.

photo 2

In the midst of the shelf hanging and book rearranging there was some paper sorting and plenty of recycling going on. And while getting caught up on new fall tv there was some chair cleaning. Simon loves his new chair (you can see the rubber stops in the first picture). The booster seat we had is fine, but it’s always out and an adult can’t sit on it. If we are going to have a chair out all the time, I wanted it to be usable. Enter this gem from the 1950s. Fun fact: It was made in Columbus, IN, not far from where I grew up.

photo 1

And where was the little munchkin during all this you ask? He spent the morning at HD with us. Then we have the beauty of Uncle Josh and Rahkia who picked him up and took him to the Natural History Museum. Then to dinner. Then to a friends house. Bringing him home just in time for bed. That was amazing.

Monday morning is here and there are piles of things everywhere. But we can sit on the couch and get to our bed. There is a ways to go, but it’s going to be great!

This is part of PAIL’s Monday Snapshot.

Weekend Getaway

With a gender reveal!

**updated with doggie pics.

This past weekend we flew to Indiana to stay with my Mom and go to a wedding. This was Simon’s first trip as a ticketed child. The flight out was a bit stressful, but once we got to Indy it was a weekend of relaxing, family, and fun.

Mom and Chip have a new house with an outdoor living room. One wall of doors, one is the exterior of the house, one is open with curtains and one a lattice work. This is my happy place, an outdoor room with a fireplace. All houses should have this.

happyplace

The great thing about the suburbs is you can drive to Target just to wander around. I guess I could do this here too – but an hour on the bus or train to get to the nearest Target needs a reason beyond “I wonder what new things that I don’t really need they have.” We also went to a consignment store and a few others. I managed to score parts of Halloween costumes, some items for new baby, some maternity things for me, and a few shirts for Simon. Then we ate at Steak ‘n Shake and went through the car wash. Simon was terrified. He kept saying “it’s ok Simon, it’s ok Simon.”

atthecarwash

I got a chance to hang out with Sara and the kiddos Saturday morning. We took zero pictures of the kids playing or ourselves. But believe me when I say it was a blast hanging out with Sara even if Charlie and Simon do have a little work to do on the whole sharing thing…

Saturday night was the wedding. I work this old favorite Ann Taylor LOFT dress of mine. Non-maternity. Seriously I can’t believe it fit!

2013-10-05_1381006755

The ceremony was nice and took place during the short window of time in the entire day where is wasn’t absolutely pouring. The dinner was under a tent outside and even with the rubber floor there was mud everywhere! The poor bride had mud to her knees. Dancing took place inside and there was a nice covered porch to stand on. I’m so happy Emily and Scott made it up.

kaseyrob

emilyscott

20wkbelly_sister

While we were partying all night, Simon stayed home and had fun with my cousin Haley, who sat for us. Here he is lounging, in the bath, and snuggled in a towel. I’m so glad he and Haley got to have this time together. Although she may be rethinking her career as a baby-sitter.

simonwithhaley

Simon’s favorite part of the weekend were the doggies. “There’s a lot of doggies in there!” In addition to Mom’s dog Tellie, they were keeping Porkchop for Kari, and Emily and Scott brought Yumi. Simon did a lot of dog walking (or being walked by the dog). He LOVED it. Here he is on an early morning walk in pjs and rain with Memaw, Tellie, and Yumi. We aren’t dog people, but this is pretty adorable.

simonyumi2

simonyumi1

Sunday after the wedding we didn’t have too much time to recover because we had a brunch with my extended family on my mom’s side. My mom-mom even made the trip! And Clint brought Cy. I was having so much fun I didn’t take any pictures – this is a theme in my life lately. But I did make cupcakes! White with a gender reveal for the majority who didn’t know (I’d already told Mom and Simon told Emily – he does know things.) So this is the picture you’ve really been waiting for:

.

.

.

.

.

itsaboy

Half Baked

How is it that I’m 20 weeks pregnant? When did time start moving quite so fast? I can’t believe I’m halfway done.

I had an emotional breakthrough this week in which I realized that I AM PREGNANT. Not that I don’t think about it almost every moment of every day. I know, but somehow this week I figured it out and now I know. That statement makes no sense to anyone who hasn’t experienced the crazy pregnancy hormones.

Some stats first, then the emotions:

20wks_no2

Weight gain: +4 lbs.

How I’m feeling: I was nauseous for weeks 6 – 8. Since then I’ve felt great. Tired. But I’ve been tired for 2 years. I think I feel better overall this time around, but it could just be that I’ve got other things going on and don’t have time to think about every little symptom.

The motion sickness is back and in full force. I’ve now puked on the bus twice (I carry barf bags) and twice the second I stepped off the bus. I spend every ride actively trying not to puke. Not as bad as with Simon, but not pleasant.

The bump: It’s definitely there! For comparison here is the 20 week belly with Simon – same shirt too. I think I was bigger with Simon.

Maternity clothes: In that awkward/annoying stage where none of my clothes fit, but most of the maternity stuff is too big. I have a few things I really love, but they are winter and it is currently 80 out.

Cravings: When I’m hungry I eat ALL. THE. THINGS. But mostly I don’t have much of an appetite.

Gender: Come back on Tuesday 🙂

Movement: I think I’ve felt something a few times. But nothing certain and not consistent. Another anterior placenta – so it might be a few more weeks.

20wks_no2_CU

And now the EMOTIONS.

I remember feeling not myself with Simon. Baby brain is very for me and I could not make decisions for anything and was so scattered all the time. Not the best thing when in a PhD program. Picking a stroller color brought me to tears. And do we remember the stress of the baby bedding? This time around I have a two year old to keep alive. In addition to a job that is more stressful than anticipated. And oh yeah, that pesky dissertation I’m supposedly writing. There is a lot going on and I’ve been stressed and emotional. And generally just not really happy about anything. Except that, you know, I really like my life. This week Rob reminded me that pregnancy makes me a little crazy – and it hit me. I’M PREGNANT. This explains so much. Yes, there are a lot of stress factors, but this is a big part of my feeling “off.”

So my little half-baked baby. Keep on reminding me you are there.

With Simon every moment and milestone were so exciting. While this baby was very much hoped for we weren’t really expecting it to happen so fast. The day I got a positive pregnancy test we were shocked. Excited and happy but shocked. I wasn’t at all prepared for the emotions that came with pregnancy and the thoughts of TWO. Some days it is scary to think about how we are going to do it with the space and daycare and will I ever finish school.

I didn’t realize how different things would be the second time around. I was happy and relieved at the first ultrasound to see a heartbeat, but it didn’t bring me to tears. We’ve done this before some of the mystery is gone. This is not to say that this jellybean isn’t very loved – because there is plenty of love. Just that the emotional journey is so different. We have 20 weeks to go. It’s going to fly by.