Monday, May 27, 2013

Girl or Boy?

In exactly one week we will know whether we will spend the rest of our lives being a mom and dad to a little boy or little girl. That's a big deal! The anticipation is absolutely killing me! So, since we don't know what he/she is in there yet and have no way of finding out until our anatomy ultrasound, I've been looking at old wives tales and seeing which way the pendulum is swinging. I obviously don't believe all of them and some are just plain crazy, but either way they are fun to look at so I thought I would share them with you all and see your opinions.
Boy or Girl?
1. Heart rate. According to the old wives tales, a heart rate of 140+ indicates a girl. A heart rate of 140 and lower indicates a boy.
--The baby's heart rate was always 160-175 every time I checked it for the first 14 weeks or so. At our last Dr. visit though it was 155 and just this week when I checked it was hovering right around 152. All indicate a girl, but it is slowly dropping....or the baby is getting much more wiggly and hard to get a good read on.
2. Cravings. Sweet cravings indicates a girl, sour or salty cravings indicate a boy.
--I've been loving lemons lately, but in the same breath I've been eating WAY more ice cream than I normally do. I'd say this one is a draw.
3. Chinese Calendar.
--This uses my age at conception (25) and the month we did the deed (January). This indicates a girl.
4. Mayan determination. This uses the age I was at conception and the year the baby was conceived. If both are odd or even, it's a girl. If one is odd and the other even, it indicates a boy.
--I was 25, and the year was 2013, indicating a girl because both numbers are odd.
5. Stealing my beauty. The old wives tale says that a girl baby will steal a mother's beauty for her own, this causing the mother to feel less pretty, break out more often, and just look all around more dull.
--My face has only broken out ONCE this entire pregnancy so far and has hands down been the clearest it's been in 2 years! Definitely indicating a boy.
6. Morning sickness. Lots and intense morning sickness points to a girl because it's thought all the extra hormones a female baby is producing causes the mother's hormones to surge. Not much morning sickness indicates a boy.
--No need to go into details...this would certainly indicate a girl. (Though I know for my best friend she was totally opposite)
7. Hair. Thin and dull indicates a girl, thick and luscious indicates a boy.
--I was expecting some miracle growth in both my hair and fingernails this pregnancy because I've always heard this to be true no matter the sex, but alas, my hair sucks right now, indicating a boy.
8. The father. Since the baby's daddy is the only one contributing either an X or Y, the sex determination is up to him. If it is passed down through generations, you judge by siblings.
--Ryan's parents had him, a brother, and a sister. So 2 boys, 1 girl. His dad had 3 brothers and 3 sisters in his (biological) family. This is pretty neutral then, I would say.
9. Mood swings. Sweet and sour mood swings indicates a girl. Steady and normal indicates a boy.
--I, surprisingly, have not had any real mood swings. Like I mentioned previously, I do cry at the drop of a pin, but I haven't been an evil witch by any means. Actually, quite the opposite, indicating a boy.
10. The mother's guess. This is a study not a wives tale, but supposedly women guess their baby's sex correctly 71% of the time.
--My guess?! I don't have one. I dream it is a boy but then when I picture us having a child I always picture it being a girl--so I'm truly 50/50. And like I've mentioned before, EVERYONE besides 3 people now say its a girl, which kind of makes me lean towards a boy because God likes to trick people :)
So what do you think?! Should we be buying pink bows or Tonka trucks?
Boy: 3 Girl: 4

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

giving a pregnancy update.

I haven't been on here for awhile and I've had so many sweet comments and texts that I felt like I better update this little blog of mine a bit about this pregnancy.
So what's been going on?
Due Date
Well, to start with, we got our due date moved forward (or is it back?) 2 I am now due on October 20th. I had a Dr. appt last Monday and with my tummy check and last period both lining up with October 20th, he decided that day should be my due date..not the 22nd like the ultrasound provided, and I'm ok with that! Actually, I am MORE than thrilled about it. To think I am already 17 1/2 weeks is absolutely crazy to me! I know some people love being pregnant (my grandma is one of them!) and say to enjoy this time and take it all in, but I am not one of them. I'm ready for this sweet baby to be here and to no longer feel like I do! These last 17 weeks have undoubtedly been the hardest 17 weeks of my life--not something I want to stretch out :)
Morning sickness
Going off of the above...if you missed my first post about my morning sickness you can click here. Otherwise, I'm happy to report that I am about where I was when I wrote the last one; I'm not worse, not better. I am MUCH better than I was the first trimester though--thank God. I am still taking my Zofran but not nearly as much as I was and I have even had several days where I've just gotten sick once or twice which is totally doable. We have Arne and Vanessa (from Germany) staying with us and we (they) went shopping all day yesterday in DM and that was definitely rough on me...I even got sick in the parking lot. So I know my body can't handle all day tiring events quite yet but I am making it! Also, I still haven't gained any weight BUT my Dr. was a-ok with it and assured me I was doing fine. Go me!
My food aversions haven't changed much--I still can't stand the thought of pasta but off the top of my head, most other things don't make me quite so sick to think about. And I'm not sure my morning sickness is normal because a lot of people say food made them sick and mine is really not food related at all. Which may or may not be a good thing.
I hadn't really had cravings until about 2-3 weeks ago and I guess I always underestimated the weirdness of them! I haven't wanted anything totally crazy, like cottage cheese with mustard or something weird like that but I have been craving things I don't normally eat; strawberries, strawberries, and more strawberries! Also green apples (yummy!) and just this week LEMONS! I seriously have eaten 1 1/2 full lemons today..plain! I have to force myself to stop or else I'd cut up more and eat them instead of lunch or dinner. I've never hated these things but never really like them to the extent I do now either. Like, we never even bought these things prior to this. Now we have a shelf full of strawberries and a drawer full of lemons and apples. Weird.
On a less healthy note, I've also been liking ice cream once or twice a week as well. I'm not sure if I'm actually craving it or just enjoying it because Ryan likes to get it when we go for a car ride and the weather has been perfect for it, but either way, I've actually been ordering some now where as I never used to. Plain chocolate in a dish :)
water with lemon..yummy!
Girl or Boy?!
Eeeeeek!! The question that haunts me in my sleep and consumes my daily thoughts!! We will know in just 2 1/2 weeks whether we are having a boy or girl and I CANNOT WAIT! I am so so excited!! I don't care what this little peanut is, I just want to know so I can get my OCD personality under control and start preparing and buying stuff--and most importantly, come up with a name for this little thing! Aaaah the anticipation makes me squeal. Two...yes TWO people have said a boy and everyone else has said a girl. I'm curious as to who's right!! Ryan and I go back and forth on what we think daily. So, what is your guess?! There is a poll in the right hand corner of this page--take it and let me know your thoughts!! :)
My Bod
All of my clothes are still fitting but some are definitely tighter than others. My white jeans that have always been pretty snug are definitely a fight to get into at this point. I'm afraid I only have a couple of weeks left with them (I'm not comfortable enough with the whole hair tie around the button thing). Also, today while laying poolside in my swimsuit Ryan comes up and says "Your belly really is getting big, isn't it?!" lol so I guess my belly is getting bigger at this point--I have a feeling that won't slow down :) but I'm ok with it :)
I've been the queen of telling my friends that my body doesn't even feel like it belongs to me at this point. So many weird things go on that I really had no idea about prior to pregnancy.
  • I am going pee soooo often it's crazy!
  • My blood sugar gets low very easily..if I haven't snacked for a couple hours I get super shaky.
  • I wake up hungry in the middle of the night like I haven't eaten in days!
  • I am alwaaaays tired.
  • Ryan teases about how often I cry now and says I'm in my "second crymester" :) Sometimes I don't even know why I feel like crying and other times I just cry about a tv show or even thinking about how excited I am to meet this little thing. Or one time it was because we didn't have Poptarts. Oooooh goodness.
But none of these things are bad by any means...just different than what my body is normally! But of course, I'm not normally growing a child either.
Pregnancy Journal
When I first thought about getting preggo I promised I would write in a journal every couple nights throughout the entire thing and try to document it all. Well, that fell by the wayside a few weeks into it once I got so sick. Not only was I not writing in a journal, but I also wasn't keeping my blog up, so I had no real way of documenting anything. If my tears could tell a story, I'm sure they'd have a 30 chapter book written :) but they can't. So, I saw online this little book called "From Pea to Pumpkin" which is basically a little pre-written type journal and you just fill in your pictures and stories and answer the questions asked week-by-week. Seriously, it turned out to be a lifesaver and the cutest thing! It's a hardcover book which I think will keep great and be something cute to look back upon for baby or myself someday. So if you are considering having a baby I DEFINITELY recommend this!! In fact, I may just get it for my friends in the future who are having babies!

**If you want to check out the pregnancy journal, click here.

Shots, Shots, Shots, Shots, Shots...eeeeeevvverybody!

I think some of you probably know and some of you don't, but I have to give myself a shot each day with this pregnancy up until 6 weeks post partum. At first it was quite the pain and I had major anxiety about doing it each night, but now I'm basically a pro. I was leaving quite a few bruises at first and wasn't sure what the heck to do and what angle to do it, but now it's a wam-bam-thank you-mam kinda deal and I'm done..and bruise free. I can give them to myself anywhere that has fat (arms, thighs, stomach, etc) but I've only done my tummy so far and it seems to be working so I'll just keep doing that. And no, I haven't let Ryan give me any. 

So that's all I have for ya, folks. We have friends from Germany staying with us this week so we've been busy and then this weekend we have a few graduation parties and also Cass's Bridal Shower!! We are so blessed with so many good things happening!! Oh! I also got a brand spankin' new suv!!! :) Life is good!

Now go take my girl or boy poll in the right hand corner--let me know what you think we're having!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

sharing our wedding speeches...4 months later.

I am a little bit behind getting this up here but I thought I would share the speeches given at our wedding with those of you who weren't there.
Though everything about that day was so memorable and special, the speeches really stood out as a highlight to me. Everything everyone had to say was so so sweet; it meant a lot to hear such kind things from our family/friends.


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

on the best and worst diet ever...pregnancy.

SO many people have asked how I am feeling lately (it's only natural to ask a pregnant person, right?) and I don't want to lie and say "wonderful!" but I also don't want to go into details about how sick I am and make it a "poor me" story either. So I figured what better place to type it all out than on my lovely little blog.

Not only will this give details on what's been going on for those of you who may not know, but it will also be a good reminder for me..or even birth control for me in the future ;)

Ok, so when we first found out I was pregnant (just a few weeks in), I was feeling like a million bucks. I mean I was scared out of my mind, but my body felt totally normally. If the tests didn't all say "pregnant" I would have never known.

At about week 5 I started to feel a little nauseous but nothing horrible. I wasn't getting sick or anything, but I distinctly remember one night going out with girlfriends and feeling like I could get sick at any second while waiting on our food. Our food came, I ate, and felt totally fine again. I chalked it up to maybe not eating enough that day.

In my mind I knew this was probably my first pregnancy symptom, but on the other hand I warmly welcomed it because it made it seem more real, if that makes any sense. I've always thought getting sick was part of the deal and it would insure the fact that I was having a healthy, normal pregnancy. So in a weird way I not only was ok with it but also looked forward or even welcomed it. Oooooh how silly I was!

Fast forward just a few days...I was just under 6 weeks and the day it hit me, it REALLY hit me. I think the first day I got sick probably around 10 times. I was so scared at this point, I honestly thought I maybe had the flu or something because it hit me so hard, so fast. Like this definitely was not the "morning sickness" I had read/heard about! Another day came and went and another day and another day..the same thing, every single day. I wasn't running a fever, so I knew it was nothing viral, it was definitely "morning" sickness....only it was all day sickness.

I wasn't eating, I wasn't drinking, yet I was throwing up every half hour or so. It was miserable.

I finally turned to good old Google after a few days and seriously read every single article, babycenter discussion board, blog, you-name-it, there was on morning sickness and tried EVERYTHING listed; eat saltines, never let your belly get empty, don't drink with your meals, no citric foods, snack every couple hours but no big meals, etc. etc. etc. Nothing seemed to be working and I was getting worse.

Finally I went to my Dr. for my first ultrasound at 6 weeks 1 day and told the nurse how miserable I was. She tested my urine and said I had ketones in it and set me up an appt. just a couple days later to check again. She basically said to drink what I could but don't worry about the food because baby was still getting everything it needed from inside me at this point. I went down for my next appointment a few days later and got told the same thing, only that I was VERY dehydrated and had just 12 miserable hours to get my levels back up or I would be put in the hospital. I am not kidding you guys, I did NOT want to be put in the hospital at all but I also thought it might be a better option at this point than being so sick! I was miserable, to say the least. I think I threw up about 5 times just in the car that's a 25 minute drive!

I did what I could that night and drank like 4 Gatorades and some waters. The next morning my sample came back ok and she let me go through the weekend. My next appt was that following week with the specialist in Des Moines and by the time I got there, I was still so sick and was now losing weight. Finally, she suggested I take Unisom and B6 together and see if that helps. I had read about it online but was not about to take medicine without talking to my Dr. first. With her suggestion, we left the Dr.'s office and headed straight to Walgreen's. I immediately took my first "dose" and within 30 minutes, I felt better than I had in weeks. I was exhausted, but I felt better aaaand actually ate a small meal.

I went home, continued taking the Unisom and B6, but noticed I was needing more and it was wearing off REALLY fast after just a couple days. I was also still throwing up upwards of 20some times a day while on it. So it wasn't "curing" my morning sickness, but it was helping me eat, if that makes any sense.

Needless to say I was absolutely miserable. I couldn't go a half hour without getting sick, I couldn't even walk to my couch from the bed without getting sick, I was surrounded with trashcans and toilet paper, I hadn't showered in days, and I obviously could not go to work. To say it felt like the worst flu I have ever had is a HUGE understatement. I would literally lay in bed and cry for hours each day praying that the day would fly by and I could be back to sleep (sleep was the ONLY time I felt any relief). I was literally wishing away time and praying to God that this didn't last my entire pregnancy.

Meanwhile, Ryan was a saint. He was grocery shopping, cleaning the house, cleaning up after me, and even holding my hair or switching garbage bags while I was getting sick. I seriously owe him the world and have no idea how I would have gotten through all of this without him. There were SO many times I know it took it's toll on him and he would sit in the living room watching me get sick and feel so say it didn't affect him would be a lie.

This sounds absolutely crazy but just to put you in my mind for a second...I was on the Ipad so much in bed for the first few weeks of this that I seriously grew an aversion to even the Ipad. I would look at it and it would make me feel sick. I think my mind had somehow correlated the Ipad with being sick and I didn't touch it for weeks.  So bizarre.

Finally realizing that this was totally not normal, I ended up going back to the hospital and since I was so sick and had lost so much weight, I was put on a prescription medicine and told I had Hyperemesis Gravidarum--basically, extreme morning sickness. I had read a lot about it online but was also very hesitant about being on ANY medication, especially one that is known to cross the placenta but my Dr. assured me I was causing much more stress to the baby being so sick than the medication would. I gave in and started taking the medicine immediately. (Zofran)

Instantly, I started to feel relief. It worked in much the same way as the Unisom did, only it lasted a little longer and wasn't a sleeping pill, so it wasn't knocking me out like the Unisom was. So basically I was still getting sick often (though not as much) but it increased my appetite, allowing me to hopefully start taking in more nutrients than what was coming up. I was taking the Zofran every six hours around the clock...yes, even in the middle of the night and despite still getting sick and losing weight, I did start to feel better.

A lot of days were still horrible and no matter how much Zofran I took, puking 30 times a day (on a bad day) was still happening, but other days were good and I was keeping it at around 10. During these few weeks (7-12) I kind of became more accustomed to it and could deal with it better. I still wasn't able to drive myself anywhere because I didn't trust myself going down a highway and getting sick and even had to lie to friends if they needed a ride saying I was sick (kinda true, right?) but I was definitely dealing with it.

Ryan and I would take lots of baggies anywhere I went..dr appts, etc, make sure I had my Zofran with me, and I would only buy or eat foods that I knew would be a) smooth coming up and b) didn't taste so bad coming up. Cocoa puffs were always a good option as they tasted the same coming up, while apples or prunes have been the worst coming up to date. Dis.gus.ting.

After a few weeks of praying, praying, praying, not eating, losing weight, and lots of help from Ryan, I can finally say I am MUCH better. This last week is best I've felt, which gives me hope that next week will be even better! I'm obviously way into my second trimester by now which also brought back energy--so I'll take that too! I still get sick a few times a day and some are worse than others, but it is so minor now that I hardly even think about it at this point. It just happens and I go about my business. I'm not sure I'd go on vacation or anything wild like that, but I can drive a car, go to a movie, and get out of bed on a daily basis--heck, I even just signed a contract to teach summer school through the college this summer, so clearly I'm feeling MUCH better. All which have totally turned this thing around. It also gives me hope for future children we may have; we BOTH were certain this would be our only if this kept up.

I also have found out what works for me and what doesn't, which helps the process...
  • I will always get sick while showering. I haven't showered one time without getting sick. Literally.
  • Any time I feel hot or overheated I will get sick--this might explain the shower thing though I'm not sure.
  • The thought/smell/sight of pasta does it every time. Just typing that makes me queasy!
  • Getting too hungry causes it so I eat every 4 or so hours around the clock--yes, even in the middle of the night Ryan wakes me up and I eat.
  • If I am exhausted the day before and get to bed late, my next day is miserable.
  • Saltines don't work. As much as I appreciate everyone's advice to eat saltines, HG is far beyond "try to eat saltines before you get out of bed"
  • "Preggie Pops" are just hard candy and a waste of money--I ordered them offline because I was so desperate...what a joke. As you probably guessed, they don't work.
  • Eating a yogurt or carbs before bed DOES seriously helps me sleep and wake up feeling better!
  • I still take a Unisom every single night before bed, and will take a Zofran when I wake up, but I am no longer taking Zofran every 6 hours around the clock. There have even been a couple days where I have not taken any at all. I'm trying to make that an EVERY DAY thing.

So there is where I stand with this morning sickness diet; I wouldn't wish it on my worst nightmare! But on the otherhand, some women would be sick for 9 years to have a child of their own, and I know that I am blessed beyond words. I have a healthy little peanut growing inside me, and a wonderful husband to hold my hair when I'm hanging out of his car getting sick on the way to a company dinner :) Not everyone gets to experience that.