Wednesday, October 29, 2014

38 Weeks



Total Weight Gain: I gained two more pounds, so thirty total. My doctor attributed it to swelling...it's probably more the Halloween candy and the fact that I've been eating like there's no tomorrow!

Size of Baby: James is the size of a pumpkin! How appropriate for Halloween!

Sleep: It's okay. Lots of tossing and turning due to hip pain.

Movement: He's definitely slowing down as we get closer to the finish line. A couple of times recently I've worried about lack of movement, but it's been okay. His heartrate was in the 150s yesterday at the doctor's office so he's doing well.

Cravings: I'm craving juice of all kinds!

Gender: Boy...sweet baby James!

Mood: Pretty good, definitely antsy. I have that nervous feeling like I need to have everything perfect at home because it could happen at any moment. I'm excited and ready to meet my baby!

Symptoms: I'm uncomfortable and swollen, particularly in my hands. In the mornings when I'm waking up, my hands are very numb and to borrow a Pink Floyd song lyric, "feel just like two balloons". Once that passes, it hurts to stretch out my fingers. The baby is sitting very low and I have quite a bit of nerve compression and pain. Also, it's so random but I have this really awful pain in my upper left rib...I had the exact same thing with Claire. So weird...I guess your body is your body, no matter the pregnancy.

I had my weekly appointment yesterday and all is well. The baby's head is very low so my doctor said she could possibly see me back there as early as tonight, but there's just no way to know. Effacement is the same, about 50%. Because of the way things are tilted at the moment, it was too difficult and uncomfortable to get a reading on dilation. I'm really curious how dilated I'll be at my next appointment, if I make it that far. Since we've made it to 38 weeks, I think I'd like to go ahead and make it 39 so he'll be fully full term. Of course, there are also moments I'd like to be done being pregnant immediately! 

Differences from Last Pregnancy: So many things are different! It's so incredible being able to walk this time around. When I get to feeling whiny about being in that uncomfortable, miserable phase at the end of pregnancy, I try to keep in mind that last time was so much harder and that I'm so blessed. It's really weird not having any frame of reference for what this is like, despite it being my second pregnancy. When I think about being in the hospital, I always picture myself confined to the bed, because that's how it was last time. I have to keep reminding myself that while I'll certainly be in pain after giving birth, I'll be able to get up and walk around...it's just crazy wonderful to think about!

Milestones: We are finished with the nursery!!! It's been a labor of love for me and Cam, and we're so happy with how it turned out. I'll try to post pictures soon. Cam painted a beautiful mural for our son, and it's so special that our kids have these works of art that were custom designed for each of them by their daddy. I seriously don't think I can ever paint over them...or move. Everything's washed and set up, me and the baby are packed, and thanks to some wonderful help from my mama, there are a several meals in the freezer for when we come home from the hospital. It feels really good. Now that most of the work is wrapped up, I'm ready to snuggle my sweet baby boy!

Best Moment this Week: We had a wonderful weekend with Cam's parents in town. It was a lot of fun and Claire loved getting to be with her beloved Gigi and Poppy!

What I'm Looking Forward to: I'm looking forward to meeting my son! In the (likely) nearer future, I'm looking forward to trick or treating with my adorable little Minnie Mouse Claire!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

37 Weeks


Total Weight Gain: I'm up 28 lbs.

Size of Baby: Baby James is the size of a bundle of swiss chard.  
                                      
Sleep: Pretty good. 

Movement: This is going to sound very non-maternal, but at this stage in the game the movement is weird and uncomfortable. He is just so big and so out of room! Finding these hard spots sticking out of my stomach that are feet or whatever is a little bizarre and almost painful. I guess we're both just feeling some growing pains. ;)

Cravings: I'm craving Mexican food!

Gender: It's a boy...James!

Mood: Pretty good, getting really excited! I can't wait to see his sweet face!

Symptoms: I'm feeling okay, just more of the same aches, pains, and discomfort, along with uncomfortable Braxton Hicks. I had my appointment yesterday and it went well. I'm 1 cm dilated, my cervix is very soft, and 50-60% effaced. My doctor says I'm definitely contracting and while there's no way to know the timeline, she thinks I'll just slowly go into labor. She, along with Cam and I, don't think I'll make it to my due date. His head is way down low. In fact, when she measured my fundal height last week it measured 37 weeks, but this week it was 35 weeks because he's dropped so low. It kind of makes me wonder if something could happen soon. I'd like him to stay put until I'm 38 weeks so that his lungs can keep developing, we can finish our last few to-dos, and because my doctor will be out of town until Monday. 

Best Moment this Week: We had a great time taking Claire to the pumpkin patch on Saturday. It's fun doing things like this with her while she's still the only child, and also neat to think about what it will be like next year with two! She is so so cute and getting to the stage where she cracks us up daily. Love that girl. 

What I'm Looking Forward to: Cam's parents are coming into town this weekend and we can't wait! Also looking forward to our sweet baby boy's arrival...it won't be long now and I can't wait to see how it all unfolds. Will Baby James be a Halloween baby? Or a daylight savings time change baby? Or an election day baby? We shall see!!! :)

Friday, October 17, 2014

36 Weeks

                      

Total Weight Gain: I've gained 25 lbs.

Size of Baby: James is the size of a head of romaine lettuce.

Sleep: It's okay. I'm having some trouble falling asleep at night. Thankfully, one benefit of Claire moving out of the crib is that she's sleeping later in the morning (b/c it takes her so long to go to sleep at night) so I've been able to sleep in. It's pretty nice timing with the third trimester exhaustion!

Movement: Some days he's more subdued because he's running out of room, but then others he moves around a lot.  His movements feel very dramatic, I guess because he's so big at this point.

Cravings: I'm craving sub sandwiches. I've been super hungry these past couple weeks!

Gender: Our little boy, James Strutton Todd. I can't wait to see his sweet face and hold him.

Mood: Pretty good. I'm ready to not be pregnant anymore, but I'm also trying to enjoy these last few weeks. Pregnancy isn't always easy, but it is a special experience. I'm definitely enjoying being mobile after what happened last time...perspective is an amazing thing.

Symptoms: We had a growth ultrasound and 36 week appointment yesterday. Baby James looked great and very healthy on the ultrasound! His estimated weight is 6 lbs, 10 oz, which puts him in the 70th percentile. I had my first exam today: I'm about 40% effaced and not dilated yet. My cervix is soft, which Dr. Orth says means I'm contracting (not sure if that means Braxton Hicks or real contractions). His head is down where she could feel it. She thinks I'll probably go to 39 weeks. It'll be interesting to see when he does decide to make his appearance! After being induced with Claire, it's a new and exciting experience to get to go into labor on my own!

I'm feeling alright, just having the typical end-of-pregnancy symptoms. I have lots of tightening/Braxton Hicks. One spot I really notice it is in my left hip bone...feels very odd. Still dealing with pretty bad allergies on the daily...I'm convinced congestion is worse when pregnant. Breathe Right strips and Claritin have become almost daily companions. My hands feel/look so swollen and have been going numb a lot at night. I can definitely breathe better and have less heartburn now that the baby's dropped. Walking can be pretty painful and it's definitely getting tougher to get up from the couch! I think some of my walking discomfort is sciatic nerve pain, among other things. It is soooo nice to be able to walk though! It's so crazy to think about where I was at this point with Claire...I had just broken my ankle and was preparing to have surgery. Just so so so thankful to be able to have a more normal experience this time around.

Milestones: While 37 weeks is technically considered full term, 36 weeks feels like an important point. We're about a month out and it seems like if he came soon, he'd be in good health. Still want him to cook for a couple more weeks though!

Best Moment this Week: My pregnancy brain got the best of me last week and I didn't mention it, but two friends and my sister gave me a suprise sprinkle at a playdate recently. It was so sweet and fun! Baby James got some very cute things and I felt very special! Love my girls!

What I'm Looking Forward to: We're planning to take Claire to the pumpkin patch this weekend. I'm also looking forward to getting more baby clothes washed and organized ...we've been working hard these last few weeks in the nursery and we've almost got everything ready. I'm also looking forward to my next appointment on Tuesday!

And here's a bump selfie (bumpie?!?) from last weekend!



Wednesday, October 8, 2014

35 Weeks

Size of Baby: James is the size of a honeydew melon.

Sleep: It's been better the last few days since I've stopped choking. I'm really going to try to be more mindful of going to bed earlier. Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a total nightowl...night is "my time" to do what I want and I really relish it. Because of that, I'm pretty good at surviving on not a lot of sleep, but I'm realizing that this is not the case when I'm 8 months pregnant! Not getting a decent amount of sleep really wrecks me...plus these might be the last few nights of uninterrupted sleep I have for a long time!

Movement: Yes! Sometimes it is really painful...not sure if that indicates that he's out of room or Braxton Hicks, but I'm definitely have those too.

Cravings/Aversions: I'm craving pizza. I've just been really hungry for everything though! 

Gender: Sweet baby boy James! Everyone tells me that boys are super sweet, especially to their mamas, and I'm just so excited to experience that for myself. Really looking forward to newborn snuggles...nothing like it! 

Mood: Good, but a little moody, which I think is just inevitable at this stage of the game. Sometimes I have to give myself a little reminder to get over myself - haha! Claire has also decided to make things extra interesting by diving headfirst into the "terrible twos". In addition to the frequent fits and cutting of the dreaded two year molars we've been dealing with for weeks, on Monday she escaped from her crib, so now we're making a very unexpected transition to a toddler bed. This isn't something I wanted to do right before adding a second baby to the mix, but oh well. The first night went great (likely because she was exhausted from her escapee antics!) but nap and bedtime yesterday were much more challenging. Last night she finally gave up playing in her room and fell asleep on the floor at 11 pm and then we moved her to her bed. While I'm glad she's sleeping at all, I'm nervous and hoping we can get her settled into a routine before James is born. I need at least one kid to be sleeping! 

Symptoms: I can say with almost complete certainty that the baby has dropped! Hallelujah! Claire also dropped around the same time, although I had no clue until my doctor told me! It's really odd: late last week I had two days where I just felt awful...I felt really strange, uncomfortable movements, I couldn't sleep, and I just felt "off". Coupled with the fact that I started having to pee all the time, I figured baby had dropped. I could also kinda see that baby was sitting lower...as the days have passed, I can see it more and more. Then I got a little nervous when I googled "Can you feel baby drop?" (yeah, I know...bad idea) and several people said that second babies don't usually drop until right when you're about to go into labor. Combine that with how weird I'd been feeling and I got a little worried I was about to go into labor way early. I called my wonderful nurse and she told me what I already suspected was true...this is really individual and there are no hard and fast rules about such things. So now I'm just really enjoying the relief...no choking at night and I can breathe much easier! Plus Sir James is doing what he needs to do to get ready to join us in a few weeks!

Differences from Last Pregnancy: I don't fill out this section very often, but I wanted to this week because this is the last week where there will be anything comparable between my two pregnancies. This is the week in my pregnancy with Claire that I broke my ankle. After next Monday this pregnancy will be an entirely different experience, one I'm really looking forward to! But as for the here and now, I feel like this pregnancy has been fairly similar to my last overall, with a few differences. I definitely have more pain in my hips and pelvis this time around and much earlier. I think this is totally related to this being my second pregnancy. My swelling and blood pressure have been so much better this time around...definitely a result of not teaching anymore and not having to deal with a monster boss on a daily basis. Can you tell I don't miss my old job one bit? 

Milestones: On Sunday, it'll be one month 'til my due date! Crazy! 

Best Moment this Week: Baby dropping! And my Dad got some good news today. For the last several weeks, he's been having trouble with his vision in one eye. He's been to several doctors and never been able to get a clear diagnosis, until yesterday. He saw the best cataract doctor in Austin (who also happens to be Michael Dell's brother!) and he confirmed his cataract needs to come out soon, and that doing so will give my Dad a ton of relief! The doctor could also tell that some gel that naturally occurs in the eye had gotten displaced and was contributing to the issue. Thankfully that will resolve itself in time! Woohoo! We're so relieved! Waking up one day with significant blurred vision out of the blue is pretty scary, so it's really reassuring to hear that this is fixable! 

What I'm Looking Forward to: My ultrasound and appointment next Wednesday! Can't wait to see baby boy one more time and find out what he's up to! I'm also looking forward to Saturday being over...Cam is going to the A&M football game Saturday night. Not only does it mean him being on the road by himself very late coming home, but there's almost no cell service at the stadium! While the odds of something happening with the baby at that exact time are low, it still makes me nervous. Plus my parents may be out of town too. Stay put, baby James! 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

34 Weeks

Total Weight Gain: I've gained 24 lbs.

Size of Baby: Baby James is the size of a cantaloupe.

Sleep: Terrible. Between really bad allergies (breathe-right strips are a nightly requirement), leg cramps that send me leaping out of bed at all hours, and reflux choking episodes nearly every night, sleep has become a miserable experience. When I do sleep, I wake up in the morning covered in sweat. I think at this point I would rather be getting up every two hours all night to feed a newborn baby.

Movement: Oh yeah. My little wiggle worm has moved his way back into head-down position...yay!

Cravings/Aversions: I'm craving ice cream, but have been resisting the craving fairly well. Yesterday I noticed I was just really hungry for everything in sight!

Gender: It's a boy...Baby James!

Mood: I'm totally tapped out in every sense of the word. My mind feels like one never-ending to-do list right now.

Symptoms: It ain't pretty! Lots of reflux and choking. Sweating and burning up 24/7. Having a lot of pain in my pelvis and hips, as well as sharp nerve pains. While walking is a pretty painful experience, I am so thankful I can do it.

I had a doctor's appointment yesterday and it went great! James' heartbeat sounded strong and clear on the doppler and my doctor could tell he'd moved into a head-down position. When we go back in two weeks, I'll have another growth ultrasound and she'll check to see if I'm dilated...eeek! Hard to believe we're already almost at this point! From there, we'll start weekly appointments. As long as baby doesn't look super big on the ultrasound, I'll get to go into labor on my own! After being induced with Claire, I'm really looking forward to getting to experience going into labor spontaneously.

Milestones: 34 weeks is the point at which my doctor won't do anything to stop things if I go into labor. Crazy! James...don't take that as an invitation to come anytime soon...you need to stay put awhile longer!

Best Moment this Week: Getting to have a kid-free night on Friday. I'll be honest...earlier in the day before Claire left, I almost cried thinking about how weird and empty my house would seem without her, but of course it was very nice to have some time to ourselves. My parents were really sweet to keep Claire for us, and I'm happy to report that she did great. I think we were all a little shocked by how well she did...she didn't even cry when my mom put her down for the night! Thank goodness - it gives me so much peace of mind about leaving her to go to the hospital to give birth.

What I'm Looking Forward to: I'm looking forward to meeting my sweet son! I'm kind of over the preparing phase and I'm ready to move onto the next part, although I want James to stay in awhile longer. I'm also really looking forward to him dropping so I can hopefully get a little relief from the reflux.

And here's a bump picture from Sunday. I hardly have any pictures of myself during this pregnancy so I'm going to try to take some over the next few weeks so James can have some photographic proof that I actually carried him - ha!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

33 Weeks


Size of Baby: Baby Boy is the size of a pineapple.

Sleep: Overall I'm sleeping really well, but I've been having some choking episodes that wake me up soon after falling asleep. They are relatively minor and I think totally related to the baby being positioned so high up. I'm also having some leg cramping again.

Movement: Yes, lots! Lately the movement often feels like tightening...I'm not sure if that's Braxton Hicks or if he's just running out of space so it feels cramped when he moves. 

Cravings/Aversions: Most of my cravings are for sweets.

Gender: Baby Boy James!

Mood: Pretty good overall, but a little overwhelmed, worried, etc. Today I sat down with my calendar and looked at the next few weeks and it really hit me how close we are. While most of the big stuff is done, there's a pretty long to-do list of little things. There's also just a lot going on this time of year and life is busy with something always going on, something to worry about, etc. Claire is cutting her two year molars early and in the early phases of the "terrible twos" and dealing with that while being 8 months pregnant isn't easy. *I just went back and read this paragraph and I sound pretty whiny! I'm so thankful to have a sweet little girl like Claire and have all this stuff to do to prepare for another sweet baby to enter the world and join our family! I don't mean to sound negative, but sometimes life can be....well, a lot! ;) 

Symptoms: As I mentioned above, I've been having more reflux lately. I'm also having some hip/leg pain as well as sharp nerve pains intermittently. 

Best Moment this Week: We had a great weekend visiting Cam's family. It's crazy to think that the next trip we make will be as a family of four!

What I'm Looking Forward to: Two things! 
1) The baby dropping in a few weeks.
2) My parents are keeping Claire overnight on Friday night. I'm looking forward to spending time with Cam and getting some extra rest. This is only the second night Claire and I have spent apart so Big Sister needs a little sleepover practice before we go to the hospital to have James. 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

32 Weeks


Seriously, how are we two months out? Wild!

Total Weight Gain: I gained a pound since my last appointment, so 22 lbs total. 

Size of Baby: Sweet baby James is the size of a large jicama.

Sleep: I'm sleeping okay. Thankfully no leg cramps this week!

Movement: Yes, he is very active, especially at night. After finding out his position at our ultrasound yesterday morning, I think a lot of his strange-feeling movements make a lot more sense (more below)!

Cravings/Aversions: Tater tots

Gender: Baby Boy...James Strutton Todd

Mood: Last week was a bit of a rollarcoaster and stressful, but the rainy, cool weekend did me a lot of good. My emotions/hormones are a bit all over the place still, but I feel like I'm not getting so bogged down this week. If something upsets me, I get upset and then I'm too tired to hold onto it - haha! 

Symptoms: I'm definitely starting to feel it! I have very little energy and I'm having some pain in my left hip due to ligament stretching. A few times recently I've had these weird shooting pains in very uncomfortable places that almost make me double over. Dr. Orth said these are nerves getting compressed. All of this stuff is normal end of pregnancy stuff. I suspect some of the tight-feeling "movements" I feel at night are actually Braxton-Hicks contractions. Since this ain't my first rodeo, I feel a little stupid admitting that I don't know, but I feel like my Braxton-Hicks with Claire felt different. 

My appointment yesterday went swimmingly! We had a growth ultrasound first and Sir James is looking very healthy and very cute. The placenta stuff is definitely not obstructing his growth...my doctor jokes it's actually a blessing because he'd be huge without it! He currently weighs 4 lbs, 13 ounces (84th percentile) and measures about a week and a half ahead. They say he is big, but not too big. We had an ultrasound at this same point in the pregnancy with Claire and I went back and read her 32 week post today and she weighed 4 lbs, 14 ounces! Seems like they are on par with each other so far. It'll all depend on when Jamesie decides to make his arrival. 

He has moved into an odd position. He's no longer head down...right now it's way up at the top of my uterus and his bum is down on the lower left. His hands and feet are all up by his head! Sounds terribly uncomfortable to me! We nearly couldn't get a view of his face today because there were so many limbs in the way, but when I moved onto my side we got some pictures of his face. He is so precious and looks a lot like Claire with the same pouty lips. I can't wait to meet him! 

Dr. Orth said babies change positions all the time and that there's plenty of time for him to move back into head down position. If he hasn't at 36 weeks, I'll start doing some exercises to encourage him. Hopefully he will move sooner than that - I feel like his current position is part of why I've been feeling so uncomfortable lately. 

Best Moment this Week: Getting to see James yesterday! He is my precious pumpkin! 

What I'm Looking Forward to: We are going to Sugar Land to spend the weekend with Cam's family. It will be our last trip before babytime. Can't wait to see everyone! 

Here are a couple pictures from the ultrasound!

And here's Claire, also at 32 weeks. Fun to compare!