Week 33!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Still plugging away at this being pregnant thing. People are starting to ask me if I'm ready, which honestly, no, I am not. I'm going on 34 weeks people. Claire needs to keep baking for 5 more weeks (or, at minimum, 3 weeks to get to the "full term" status of 37 weeks)...so, no, I'm not ready.

I haven't the slightest idea on her size. Somewhere around 4-5 pounds I'm guessing. At my appointment last Thursday I measured exactly 33 cm, 1 day shy of being 33 weeks, so I'm measuring completely normal and completely as I did with Henry. Probably looking at another average to slightly above average size baby again.

I went back to school yesterday. While it will be 5 weeks of work, I counted actual student contact days I will have, and that is only 24 or something like that. It will fly by...especially considering I have 2 weddings yet this month (the last being at 37 weeks--yes, with a second shooter/emergency backup completely in place).

I have to pick up a couple canvases and paint them for her room and order some of the previous posted maternity pictures, and then her room is good to go. I have off Thursday and Friday of this week, so I'm hoping to get the jump on the laundry (although there isn't much, as Claire sits right now without any little socks/booties and only 5 sleepers). Henry lived in his sleepers the first month or two, and we went through at least 3 each day with spit up and poop explosions, so we really need more than 5. I just can't seem to find many on sale.

I've been getting more Braxton Hicks contractions the last few days too. I won't get checked until 36, or maybe even 37 weeks, so I have no idea if they are just practice or what, or if they are doing anything yet at this point.

Breathing continues to get more difficult. I carried Henry up the stairs yesterday for the first time and I thought I was going to collapse at the top of the stairs. Definitely won't be doing that again. I knew there was a reason I was making him walk and hold my hand places all summer. Heartburn comes and goes, though no where near what it was for Henry.

Oh yeah. Stretch marks have appeared 3-4 weeks earlier than they did with Henry. And not just one or two...they came in with a bang. And they itch.

When I'm not at school, editing photos, or playing with Henry, I spend my time eating ice cream and cookies.

That is about it. Next appointment is next week.

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Family and Maternity Photos

Friday, August 26, 2011
We took our official maternity photos with Henry (and by we, I mean Ryan and my mom) when I was over 35 weeks. I wanted to take some at least a few weeks earlier this time before I was a really gigantic boat.

So off Ryan, Henry and Kelly and I went to my favorite local, close, and free spot to try and capture a few images. Here is what we all came up with. Enjoy!

Crazy enough, I had the gray outfit in mind for just pictures of me (which we actually didn't end up taking very many of) as well as some of Ryan and me by ourselves. I bought the gray dress after I bought the purple one and Henry was dressed in gray with the purple dress in mind. Of course, as Ryan and I sat down to take some of just us, Henry for once, wanted to be in on them too...so we are both in gray and we kind of blend into each other. Oh well! We take what we can get around here in terms of his cooperation with photos.

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We had a shot for inspiration on this one. The one of the left didn't quite turn out how I thought, but, it's hilarious.

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Why yes, my butt does seem to expand to the same degree of my belly when pregnant. Thanks for noticing :)


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Ryan said he wanted a picture for his Linkedin account. This is what we got.

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Week 32!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Behind again, as usual. I can easily blame it on how busy I was this weekend with my photography business. 7 sessions (1 that had two parts) in 4 days. Most I've done at one time, ever...let alone 8 months pregnant. I was exhausted at the end of it.

Nothing new on what her size could be. Probably around 4 pounds, which is what I think I said last week.

I'm getting pretty close to super uncomfortable. Sleep doesn't exist most nights, and it takes all the energy I have to flip myself over and around my body pillow. Some nights, I just give up. I also can't make it the whole night without having to get up and go to the bathroom.

Getting up off the floor is more difficult, and there are no longer very many ways I can sit upright and still be able to breath normally.

I've been editing photos for the past 3 hours, and I'm pretty sure Claire's foot has not left my ribcage. Other than that, her movements seem to be transitioning to more "pushes" as opposed to full fledge kicks (as she must be running out of room), as well as movements where it feels like she's dragging her foot/hand across my whole belly, really slowly.

I've been having the Braxton Hicks contractions here and there (which is what I assume they are). They are just briefly uncomfortable and do not hurt at all.

Aside from that, it's now crunch time. A few days left to get things organized before I'm back at work for the next 5 weeks, laundry to wash (and new laundry detergant to buy again--we switched to regular Tide a while ago because I was sick of using the free and clear stuff and not having that "fresh laundry" smell). Back to the Dreft or another sort that is free and clear. We also have to get the spare bed out of Claire's room.

Since I'm now measuring closely to the number of weeks I am, the comments of me being due any day or gasps that were occuring when I said "October" have dwindled to almost nothing. However, the new conversations have to do with how I will be giving birth to Claire.

*Steps up on soap box.*

When people ask me when I'm due these days, I answer "She's coming on October 10th, unless she decides she's ready to come before that." That answer gets people wondering/assuming I'm having a planned C-Section, which is then followed by the whys--both of this baby and my first baby.

I honestly didn't put too much thought into this decision before I made it. I read a few things about the risk of a VBAC (vaginal birth after c-section) and made what I feel, is a very good choice. Here's one little blurb:

Risks

By Mayo Clinic staff
VBAC poses potentially serious risks, including:
  • Failed attempt at labor. Labor results in a repeat C-section for 20 to 40 percent of women who attempt VBAC, often because the baby doesn't tolerate labor.
  • Uterine infection. If you must have a repeat C-section after labor has begun, you face a slightly higher risk of C-section complications — such as a uterine infection — than if you had a planned repeat C-section.
  • Uterine rupture. Rarely, the uterus may tear open along the scar line from a prior C-section. If your uterus ruptures — either before or during labor — an emergency C-section is needed to prevent life-threatening complications, including blood loss, infection and brain damage for the baby. When delivery takes place in a hospital equipped to handle such emergencies, rarely is the baby at risk. In some cases, however, the uterus may need to be removed (hysterectomy) to stop the bleeding. If your uterus is removed, you won't be able to get pregnant again.
For some women, pelvic floor problems also are a concern. The weight and pressure of pregnancy can weaken the pelvic floor muscles that support the uterus, and vaginal delivery may stretch the pelvic floor muscles even farther. This can lead to temporary urinary incontinence.

So, they are saying that I could go through the same type of process as last time? Attempt labor "naturally" and yet still have a 40% chance of it ending the same way it did with Henry? Point number one for repeat, planned c-section.

Uterine rupture? Life threatening complications? Point number two and three for repeat, planned c-section.

Emergency situations such as blood loss, infections, brain damage for the baby? Point number four for repeat, planned c-section.

Risk of hysterectomy and loss of ability for future pregnancies? Point number five for repeat, planned c-section.

That's five points for a repeat C-section and zero points for a VBAC.

Everyone has their own views and beliefs and desires on what they want their birth experience to be. Honestly, my experience with Henry wasn't what I had imagined or planned, but my recovery was easier than I could have imagined.

It seems incredibly stupid to me to even attempt to labor "naturally" again with the odds pretty high that I would have something happen as it did last time (a day long attempt at labor that stalls and ends in a c-section due to the cord being wrapped all around Henry--in case anyone forgot).

So, no. I didn't and won't consider a VBAC. I don't feel it makes me less of a woman because my babies will be surgically removed from me rather than being pushed out.

*Steps off soap box.*

And, last week's photo. This isn't the official 32 week photo. I looked worse than poop at the end of that day when we took it (but we still took it for the sake of taking it). The one you see here is 31 weeks, 6 days. Close enough.

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I promise to hopefully get the rest of these photos up, as well as some other adorable ones I took of Henry on Monday, and the pictures from our camping adventure the other weekend. I'm working as fast as I can!

The "H" Show.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011
As Ryan and I finished up the dishes last night, I turned around and saw this.

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What was he watching so intently?








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He calls it the "H" show (because "H" is his favorite letter, I think). He'll call out all the letters and how many there are, i.e. "Mommy, 3 H's!!!!".

For some reason he loves this show. The only other thing I really let him watch regularly is the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. Every day at 7am. He loves that show. The "H Show" is a close second", though that's not typically on much as it's on right during dinner time. So when we are finished with dinner by 6:30 and it gets put on, he gets very excited. Hopefully all the interest in letters means he'll be reading before kindergarten.


A big ol' 31 week post below (and the "big ol'" refers to my giant-ness, not the length of wording in the post). Hopefully this will tide you over until I get the pictures from this weekend up.

Week 31!

I thought I'd get this up earlier this week. I turned 31 weeks on Friday. We are definitely on the downward slope of this pregnancy, as after this Friday, I can consider myself 8 months pregnant!

Claire is still likely sitting around the high end of 3 pounds, possibly approaching 4 pounds and is around 18 inches long.

I am much more uncomfortable, feel more pain in all areas there are to feel pain, and in general am starting to feel very heavy and pregnant. Everything else is getting very pregnant too, such as my legs, as pants are getting tighter and tighter. Good thing I found some good deals on some dresses to get me through my work weeks (which, by the way, begins in less than 2 weeks. Where did my summer go??) It's hard to believe that these are my last few days with just Henry and mommy.

It's about time to gear up and really finish any cleaning and organzing I plan to do, because let's face it, not much will get done when I'm back at work and 9 months pregnant. Henry and I have been pretty good with the upkeep around here, we just have to keep it up in case Claire decides to make an earlier surprise arrival. I should probably start washing all her stuff, just in case.

I had an appointment last Thursday at 30 weeks, 5 days and I measured 32 weeks--so again, I'm sitting right at a normal measurement, even though I look at this picture and wonder where 8 more weeks of growth is going to go.

The doctor felt my legs (which still constantly hurt, especially at night) and said I had decent swelling already, so I was advised to kick my feet up as much as possible (Ryan, take note.) You can see how swollen my feet, ankles and legs are in this week's picture (it's subsided a bit now, as we were outside all weeekend, so I would say I haven't reached the semi-permanent status of cankles just yet.)

My next appointment is next Wednesday at about 33 weeks, another 2 weeks later at 35, and after that I am seen every week until October 10th rolls around. Now that August is half over, summer is ending, and school is starting, the word "October" doesn't seem so far away anymore.

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A quick post before our next adventure.

Thursday, August 11, 2011
I'll be MIA from the blog for a few days, as if that's anything different as of late. I don't even have a real excuse as to why I haven't posted in over a week other than not really taking any pictures.

So, here's a quick peek at a few candids from outside play the other day. And no, there will be no details on our adventure until it's complete. You will just have to wait and see! :)

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The Coupe is still one of his favorite things to do outside even if he insists on always being pushed with his "feet up".

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The clouds were pretty that day.

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I drew the H on the right, but it is his favorite thing to try and draw. Sometimes he gets it!

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We usually need to play with EVERYTHING when we go outside.

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He FINALLY wants to ride his Buzz Lightyear outside.

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