It’s true, I don’t have time to post. I hate it! I want to curl up and write and enjoy being pregnant, but I only get to do that an hour or so a week. I’m not complaining because I appreciate my job and the fact that we’ve figured out  our living situation. Also, J and I had a really nice weekend, despite the work and moving chaos. We met up with www.ladyloveandbabydust.wordpress.com and her wife, which was a blast. It was as if I’d already met her, since I’ve been reading her blog for a year. We compared lots of pregnancy notes, our partners compared partner notes, and we chowed down on Thai food and beer for the partners. It was great! 

  

 Here’s my pregnancy update: 

Doctors and Doulas 

 I had a monthly prenatal appointment two weeks ago with a wonderful female doctor I also saw during my miscarriage last summer. She offered to be my primary doctor, along with the midwife on staff there. So far I’ve been taking a learned helplessness approach with Kaiser being my pregnancy provider, just seeing whatever doctor was available since you don’t get to choose your doctor during labor anyway. I feel much more comfortable now, knowing that I will only see her and the midwife as much as possible. My next six appointments are with the midwife! I googled her and she’s also a prenatal acupuncturist and gets rave reviews on Yelp! I can’t wait to meet her at my April appointment. 

 We’ve also hired our doula. She’s my prenatal yoga instructor, and a super upbeat, funny and positive person. It makes sense for my yoga instructor to be my doula, since I feel so connected at yoga and feel like my labor will be very athletic and she’ll know my body pretty well by then (I started going every week starting at 12 weeks). The doula came to our house for a consultation. She explained everything – she only takes two to three clients a month so she can be readily available for our births, she empowers J and I to be ready for whatever may come our way, she does massage and helps me cope with the labor pains. She included J in everything which was great. My birth team is now my mom (midwife by profession but mom during my labor), our doula, and of course J. We talked about natural childbirth but also my fear of c-section and desire to avoid one at all costs. Both of my sisters had truly unavoidable c-sections and my doula explained how this may lead me to feel like it is inevitable. We talked about fear and control, perfectionism and other such emotionally vulnerable topics that I’ll get into in a later post. Suffice it to say that preparing for a natural childbirth and becoming a parent brings up a lot of stuff I’m already working on in therapy, and it all seems to be coming together… 

My Body 

 I’ve gained exactly fifteen pounds. It’s crazy to look at the scale and see numbers I never imagined I’d see! It’s kind of exciting, too. I keep track of my weight gain on an app so I know it’s within normal range. This helps me not obsess about it. I’m still exercising five or six days a week, doing low impact aerobics, going for jogs and doing my prenatal video. Jogging is hard with a bigger belly but I go slow and walk a lot. It’s already hard to put on my shoes and last night I painted my toenails which was really interesting! I may have to start getting pedicures. My belly button piercing started to bleed a little and I read that this can, in bad cases, cause blood poisoning, which is no joke, and affect the fetus. For the first time in fifteen years I took the belly ring out. We’d already ordered a maternity belly bar but J couldn’t get it in so for now, it’s out, and I don’t care if it closes up as long as Glitter is healthy! 

Movement 

This is the most exciting thing ever! I feel her move constantly, pretty much all day. It feels like my stomach is turning over, but it’s pleasant because I know it’s her. If I press into my stomach while I’m lying down, I can feel her kick on the outside, too. The other night she started kicking and I grabbed J’s hand and told her to press and she felt her. J’s whole face lit up! 

Clothing 

I’m almost completely in maternity wear now. I still fit into a couple of regular dresses and shirts, but pants have to be maternity. I bought two maxi dresses at Destination Maternity and I love wearing them because there’s no pressure on my belly, but I feel more professional wearing black pants and blouses to work so I still have to iron and pull those damn pants on every day. My feet also hurt a little now so I’m trying to wear more comfortable shoes. Most of my sandals are platform so I think I can keep wearing them to work. 

Food 

I only crave the same things I always have – mostly Thai food and cheddar cheese (not together). I’m eating kale salad with tofu for lunch every day to keep things flowing and healthy, and we’ve been making wild caught salmon twice a week. The only true pregnancy craving I can claim is fruit, especially tropical. I want pineapple, kiwi, coconut, oranges and apples all the time! One night I ate five blood oranges at 3am and in the morning J didn’t understand where the supply had gone… 

Sleeping 

Speaking of 3am, yes, insomnia is in full-force. I sleep well until 3am then I’m awake, sometimes until my alarm goes off. I also have terrible restless legs, which is common in pregnancy, which is now making it hard to fall asleep. I’m talking Calm brand magnesium before bed but some nights nothing helps.

Reading

I’ve been reading some parenting books and feel good about attachment parenting. I know when the baby comes everything will change and a lot depends on circumstance and our baby’s disposition and patterns, but it’s nice to be prepared and informed. I read Beyond the Sling by Mayim Bialik (yes, the actress who played Blossom). It was a little cheesy but very helpful. She explains why natural childbirth and breastfeeding are important and has chapters on baby wearing and relationship adjustments. My favorite chapter was on discipline. I have always felt very strongly that physical discipline is harmful, sometimes traumatizing to emotional development, and I work with women every day who have neglected and abused their children because they were uneducated and unable to cope with their own emotions. The book takes gentle discipline a step further though, providing alternatives to yelling “No!” at your poor one-year-old who has no idea what’s she’s doing wrong, and giving alternatives to time-outs, which I believe are shaming and cause a young child to feel emotionally abandoned. Note: If we have different beliefs about these issues, it’s okay; I’m expressing my parenting intentions for my own child but not necessarily for others.

I’m also reading The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding and Parenting from the Inside Out. I’d like to start some reading on natural childbirth and meditation and hypnotherapy next. 

That’s all for now, but I’ll definitely post a six-month update and some tidbits about our new apartment between now and then! 

  

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