Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Did someone say NEXT WEEK?

Today I had another regular OB appointment. Did I mention we're to the point now where I go in once a week for an ultrasound and 20 mins where they do fetal monitoring and also monitor contractions? I'm technically 35 weeks and 5 days today- leaving exactly 30 days until Violet is "due." Now, I've been telling people for quite some time that she isn't waiting until April 18th. I've just known that she would come early.

After today's appointment I just want to shout to the world "I WAS RIGHT!" Of course, sure enough if I do that, I will end up eating the words. But... after monitoring contractions and fetal movement, the nurse decided that my doctor should "check me to see if anything is happening." Yeah... like that wasn't cryptic and alarming to a pregnant woman. I then had to wait for him to come which took like 20 minutes. Do you know how many scary/crazy things can run through your mind in that amount of time?

Well, as it turns out, I am about 2-3cm dilated and the contractions were such that he said I may already be in early labor. His exact words after that came out sounding almost like a blur so I had to say "HOLD ON, can you repeat that slowly?"  He said "I wouldn't be surprised if you have the baby in the next week." NEXT WEEK! Can we just stop there for a minute. She isn't due for 30 days, and while I was sure she would be early, I didn't think this early.  He followed that with telling me that I officially need to be on bed rest now and that I should be watching closely for signs of labor.

Just being dilated doesn't usually mean much.. but the contractions... which haven't stopped by the way... do tend to mean a little something. I've been having them consistently for at least the past 4-5 hours, but possibly longer. I've been having little ones off and on for weeks now and, while noticeable and slightly uncomfortable, they don't hurt so I don't pay much attention to them.

Either way... I'm glad we went out for the last of the "necessities" yesterday. My mommy is coming over tomorrow to help since I have a bunch of laundry that needs to be done and even more that is clean and needs to be put away. I sure am glad we did so much this weekend to prepare. I have three weeks worth of dinners pre-made in my freezer, the car seat is installed, and Violet's room is almost completely ready- we've even prewashed all the blankets, sheets, bibs, etc and newborn sized clothes. My kitchen is mostly organized and with a few little things here and there that Cameron could get done tonight, I think I could go to the hospital feeling relatively good about being prepared.

It's getting real people.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Baby shower!

I am so thankful for all of the generous gifts we have been receiving for Violet. I'm thrilled to be blessed with friends and family that not only send things that are beautiful, but useful. I'm learning so much from my mommy friends about what to expect and what I will actually need. I'm so thankful to have such great resources and honest friends to help us transition and have realistic expectations.

 The shower was lovely. It was nice to spend some time with friends and Amanda G. did such a great job with decorating and food! I loved having friends decorate onesies for Violet.
I received many lovely letters of advice and encouragement from family that was meant to be a part of the shower, but I figured out quickly I was too emotional to read them in front of friends (especially on so little sleep) so I'm excited to have this one part to share just between me and Cameron.

I feel like we have received so much more than I ever thought we would for her. I can't wait to hang up all her little clothes and put away her blankets and booties and start packing the diaper bag. We're installing her carseat this week and packing the hospital bag : ) Thank you to all who were able to make it for coming : )  I know I was less than gushing and wonderful and you were all so sweet. I especially loved getting to meet baby Kate.

I'm 34 weeks and 3 days today. I had another ultrasound and started fetal monitoring this past Thursday. She's healthy and growing exactly as expected with a strong little heart and incredible energy- she moves and grooves all day long. I've been noticing contractions almost daily for a few weeks now, but my doctor isn't worried about it. I've been really weak with a few other symptoms due to continued steady increase in my blood pressure. We're having to watch it closely, but at this point it's still in the safe range. We have a little over a month until she's due, but I have a suspicion that she isn't going to wait that long. I could be wrong... I mean, I thought she would be a boy (we had the ultrasound tech check again Thursday just to make extra sure before we paint the walls pink).

I'm starting to feel much better about everything. I feel like it's all starting to fall into place. My home is on it's way to being truly organized, my little girl's room is to the point that I think it will be finished in the next week, and I have almost everything I need for her when we bring her home. 

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Personality Ponderings

The closer I get my due date, the more I find myself wondering what this little girl will be like. More importantly, will she be an introvert or an extrovert?

I'm an introvert. That's why I don't know my extended family very well, I haven't built relationships with my husband's family, and I have very few friends. It's taxing for me to be around people. Participating in social conventions and pleasantries is draining for me. Groups make me nervous, team sports are beyond frightening and any sort of sporadic communication is stressful (this could just be running into an acquaintance at the grocery store). I don't like being away from what's familiar. I didn't want a baby shower because of the large amount of stimulation and pressure to participate in social conventions, but I felt in the end that I might regret not having one and it seemed that there were several people in my life who really wanted one for me. Even so, I've insisted on having it in my own home- at least that way I have some familiarity and I know where I can retreat.

It's not that I don't like people, or small group activities... I've often longed to feel like part of a group, but it's hard. I have to plan things ahead of time. It's important for me to have a heads up about things- if someone is going to stop by I need to know about when... I need to know when my husband is coming home each day even if that just means he texts me and tells me thirty minutes ahead of time. I even need to plan phone calls. It helps me to receive a text to plan a phone call for a certain time (I LOVE that my dad does this for me). More important than having things planned, I need down time. I have to have an escape route where I can regroup away from others before joining back in- like I said, it's draining for me to be around others, so I need time to refill.

I've noticed this all more and more since being pregnant- probably because I've been able to have so much more alone time. I don't wish introversion on Violet because it makes living in our society more difficult (this wouldn't be a problem in certain other countries). Any wish for her to be that way is selfish on my part because I understand the world of an introvert. Also, if she needs time to herself to recharge, it means that I will also have time to myself for recharging- not the case if she's an extrovert. I worry about my ability to handle being a stay at home mom if I have extroverts for children. I am easily over stimulated- and before you take that to mean something bad, it means I keep my phone on silent, my computer on silent, and I don't ever have the tv on unless I'm specifically watching something. I can't have music playing while the tv is going and I can't have a conversation while the tv is going. I can only have one stimulating thing happening at a time or it gives me a headache. Sometimes just watching too much tv at once can drain me. I even have issues with my husband's incessant need to make noise- usually humming. I just wonder how on earth am I going to deal with a child 24/7? I know they aren't quiet unless sleeping or getting into trouble...

I'm blessed to have Cameron. He's not like me- he likes stimulation- he would have music playing all the time and his phone is almost NEVER on silent. He needs people. He thrives on social interaction especially in larger groups where he can bounce from one person/conversation to another. The constant noise kids seem to make when they are awake is much less likely to drive him insane- really it's more likely to make him join in. I can just see him emulating all of the sounds and humming when he holds Violet. She's going to think he's the greatest. He will be.

I know that God will equip me to handle any challenge that Violet and I face, it's just that I want to know ahead of time what I'm up against. Will she be stubborn? shy? silly? sassy? quiet?