Wednesday, June 27, 2007

10 Weeks and the Story of the Out of Control Belly

This is me at the end of the day, and not first thing in the morning before eating or drinking a single thing with my arms raised high in the air. And no, I am not sticking my stomach out, that's just the real deal, gassey bloating and water retention in all its glory. No wonder I feel so very attractive these days.

I think I would feel better if my uterus had already tipped and I was showing...then I could say I had a right to look pregnant. As of right now, I just look fat, and can't really say I'm showing. Its just not all that great for the 'ol ego to say "no, its not my uterus or the baby, its just gassey bloating and water retention. "

Though Sarachkah did teach me a wonderful little trick of sticking out my stomach even further and putting my hand on the top of the mound 'o bloat, thereby effectively convincing people that I am pregnant and not fat. For some reason only pregnant people put their hands on their stomachs. But hey, it worked! I have now had 3 people give up their seats for me on a crowded subway car thanks to the old hand on the belly trick. This is very exciting! I'm going to do this even when I'm not pregnant!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Paradise Lost? Found? In Search of?

Its been a little while since I've updated here...I've been very very busy napping 3 hours for every 10 seconds I'm awake. And somehow the computer makes me infinitely tired upon merely turning the damn thing on.

The other thing (besides, you know...growing a baby and all the hard work of incessant eating, sleeping, burping and farting which it entails) that has kept me away from the blogosphere is stressing out about our impending move and obsessively checking craigslist every 5 minutes just in case our dream apartment has suddenly been posted - lord knows we wouldn't want to lose our dream apartment in the 5 minutes of hypothetical negligence that my neurotic self imagines to be our ultimate downfall in life.

Just to backpedal for a moment...there's some key info that I may have failed to mention in this here blog...WB and I are planning on moving to my hometown way down in dixieland, where we both have family (WB is from Puerto Rico and ironically his brother has lived about 15 minutes from my parents' house for about 10 years now...the world is teeny tiny, really!) and a vast and wonderful support network awaiting us. Also awaiting us is a much cheaper cost of living and the opportunity for my mother, who is very sick with cancer, to enjoy to the fullest extent whatever time as a grandmother she may have. So the move makes a lot of sense for us crazy kids just setting about starting our own little monkey family.

Unfortunately, I found out a little too late that things ain't necessarily done the same down south as they is in this here big city of ours. Namely, apartment hunting. In New York, you look the month before you move. Period. That's just how things are done. And then you get cutthroat, beat up the other people trying to throw cash at the broker and lay money down immediately.... the person who gets the money in the broker's grubby little hands first wins. Its simple. I found an incredible deal on our Hell's Kitchen apartment when I came up to look before moving to New York 4 years ago, and grabbed it immediately. It was the first place I saw, and I lucked out.

Such is not to be the case in River City (*not its real name), where it seems all the good apartments and awesome deals seem to go several months in advance, and they only show apartments on a waxing moon at 3:37pm on Tuesdays. That's it. If you can't make it then, you're screwed. In New York they bend over backwards to show you apartments and call you back no matter what hour you call. In River City they don't call you back half the time and many don't show apartments on weekends and no, they're sorry but they can't accommodate out of towners because they just don't show apartments on weekends. Period.

We actually found the perfect apartment for us that we completely fell in love with only to have it snatched out from under us by someone who got an application in before us (though we think it may have had something to do with the fact that my mother blurted out something about the Little Funky Monkey's impending arrival. While it may be illegal to discriminate against expecting couples, I'm certain its done; most people don't want their other tenants complaining about the noise of a crying baby).

We're heading back down south this Friday, and I have created a gigantic monster excel spreadsheet of apartment info - a 3 volume series we will lug with us from exhausting showing to exhausting showing. And we will pick something, dammit. Even if we move in a year, we will pick something this weekend, because I need the security of knowing that something is set and done and solid amidst all this scary change. I need to dream about nesting as I delve into the terrifying mess that is our current apartment (read closet) in the hopes of eventually making some sort of packing sense out of it. I need an image to envision us in our new life we're embarking upon. And most of all, I need to know what size bed we can get (I'm hoping for king - while I love my Wild Boar, I do not always love his snoring).

The good news of the day in between craigslist apartment hunting induced brain explosions, is that I found out in my 10 week email from Baby Center that we no longer have an embryo...our Little Funky Monkey has graduated and is now a full fledged Fetus! I plan to celebrate with lots and lots of Krispy Kreme doughnuts (which we can't find in New York and which I have been dying for) once we get to River City. As for right now, its seriously time for a nap.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Called Out

A co-worker just asked me if I'm pregnant. I said "Why do you ask that?", and she replied "Because you look a little bloated there..."

Wow. A little over 9 weeks and I'm already being called out on it.

(I kind of totally loved it though!)

Thursday, June 14, 2007

The (kind of) First Appointment

Today we spent the entire morning at the midwife's office. It was kind of the first appointment - it was the first official prenatal appointment. I had been 2 weeks ago to see the midwife for what turned out to be a glorified gynecological appointment in which the only real pregnancy related thing that happened was that I got a prescription for prenatal vitamins. The rest was the usual..pap smear, breast exam, and a student who evidently skipped too many classes of speculum 101 and couldn't seem to figure out how to work the damn thing. That was fun. Today, however, was a different story. And I got to keep my pants on, which is always a plus in almost any given situation...almost.

The (kind of) first appointment was very long and very uneventful. There was a lot of paperwork, a lot of questions, a lot of blood taken, and a lot of waiting. And then I got hungry. Which is never a good thing, because if I reach a certain point of hunger, which occurs about 15 minutes after I realize I'm hungry, I become a total and complete bitch. [editor's note: I tried vainly for a full 10 minutes to think of an alternative to using the word "bitch" but found I just couldn't, because really nothing else fully encompasses the state I achieve when hungry. Nothing else does it justice] And I did, oh believe me, I did. Right about the time we were forced to wait 30 minutes just to pay the damn $20 co-payment because we were sent on a wild goose chase due to a missing form. Lovely.

The practice we are with seems to be rather crowded, harried and overrun with patients. Of course, this being New York, its probably par for the course. However, how this translates into the practical mechanics of the day to day running of the place is that shortly after the office opens, all hell breaks loose and within 10 minutes it has devolved into a gigantic clusterfuck. A gigantic clusterfuck with long waits where no one can find enough labels for your blood despite there being a virtual novella printed out consisting solely of your name and date of birth cut into sticky white rectangular forms.

But I do think our midwife is really pretty cool. We ran into her as we were walking back to the waiting room after the consult with the HIV counselor - don't panic, its a mandatory consult to let you know that every pregnant woman in New York City must be tested for HIV twice during pregnancy and then you have to sign a form saying that's ok - and she recognized me and asked how things were going and what the endocrinologist had said (I am slightly hyperthyroid and had to go get my levels checked to see if it needed to be managed medicinally, as thyroid disease can cause numbers look good, by the way, and all is well metabolically for me). She also took a moment while rushing about (which seems to be the only modus operendi there) to shake hands with WB and engage in a little friendly ribbing. I like friendly ribbing, especially when its not aimed at me. Points to the midwife for that one.

I also greatly appreciated the fact that she made sure I didn't have to see the bitchy nurse that I had previously had a bit of a telephonic altercation with when I called to make them aware that I had a thyroid condition and was concerned about it and she said "Well what can I say? You weren't worried about it fours years ago [when I was misdiagnosed with Graves' disease] - now you're pregnant and all of a sudden you're worried about it? Maybe you should have been worried about it then!" Wow, what a comforting thing to tell a frightened first time mother. Well done indeed! I told the midwife about it when I saw her 2 weeks ago and asked that I not have to see the bitchy nurse for this appointment, which I knew had to be with one of the nurses, and the midwife made it happen. She scored huge points for that one.

So the appointment basically consisted of obtaining my medical history and the family histories for both WB and myself, getting about 6 thousand vials of blood drawn, a very silly meeting with an HIV counselor in which she signed many many forms while we watched her juggle papers and telephone calls, all of which could just as easily have been done without us in the room, and a lot of talk about what I can't eat, all of which made me want to eat those foods she was mentioning because I was getting hungry. That and the nice but very ditsy nurse telling me about her pregnancy with her son. Not about her 2 daughters, just the son. I think she plays favorites, not that its any of my business.

The list of forbidden contraband includes:
1. Fish with high mercury content, including shark,swordfish, mackerel, tilefish, tuna, etc.
2. Cold cuts. any and all of 'em, even fresh from a deli. If I absolutely must have cold cuts or I'll die convulsing and crying out for ham and turkey on whole grain bread, then I have to microwave them. Sounds delish.
3. Hot dogs: must be boiled extensively. Considering pre-pregnancy I was a vegetarian, you'd think this wouldn't be a problem, but actually one of my first cravings was franks and beans...what can I say? It made me think of camping!
4. No salads with mayo, like at picnics, unless they've come straight out of the fridge and are less than 2 days old. No salads with mayo like tuna salad or egg salad form the deli because you don't know how old they are. This makes my lazy ass very sad. Now I have to make my own egg salad. Damn.
5. And the worst the absolute worst is no soft cheeses and no stinky french cheeses. Just shoot me now. I'm relegated to the Swiss, Cheddar and Parmesan only corner, left alone to weep at my sad sad fate of tasteless hard cheeses. My only hope of redemption is to ask about Machego, but I'm sure its verboten as well.

The good news is that I get out of scooping kitty poop and changing litter for 9 months and WB has to do it pretty much as soon as it exits the kitty cavity, even without my nagging, so that toxoplasmosis spores don't get in the air I breathe. Yes! There is a god!

Oh, and the other best part of the really long day? We got 3 free diapers. Just 3. No more, no less. Clearly 3 is the exact number every new parent needs.

I think we should hang them on the wall as art.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Hormones...Or The Not Always So Fun Side of Pregnancy

Hormones are making me miserable at this moment. Especially the ones tied to emotional states of being. And if you've never been pregnant, I don't think you can really get exactly how much of an effect these hormones do have on your emotions, which you suddenly feel are completely out of your control. Even if you don't always show it or never really convey the depths to others, the boiling cauldron of emotional turmoil can be such a difficult thing for the person experiencing it. I'd say hell pretty much sums it up accurately. Everyone always has pity for the partner, who is the usual recipient of whatever emotion du jour happens to pop up, but let me tell you, being the one that has to experience it firsthand is anything but a picnic.

While it is a joyous miracle, pregnancy certainly doesn't always feel like one.

I am having an incredibly sad moment. Like gutwrenchingly sad. If you look at me, I will probably cry. Heck, if you think about me, I will probably cry. So please don't think about me, okay?

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

The Booty

(look at the teeny tiny shoes! Awww!)

As in Pirate's booty, not the other non-g-rated kind...this is a family blog after all (or at least will attempt to be..I can't make any promises).

Last not WB and I babysat for the 9 month old of my dear friend ZuZu. I had spent most of Saturday with Zuzu and her baby, whom I call Mr. P, and he was definitely going through a phase of being really attached to his parents. He would reach out to me while simultaneously crying at my very existence, which was really not only adorable but totally hysterical. He's also teething, so he's sometimes in pain and lets you know it. Needless to say I was expecting Monday's babysitting gig to be a bit of a rougher ride than the last time we had babysat for them, and tried to prepare WB accordingly, warning him in advance that it may not be a super fun evening.

Remind me to always make such assumptions with our own child, that they may be proven wrong as spectacularly as these were.

Mr. P was a complete angel from start to finish, and we had a wonderful evening. I loved watching WB interact with him, and loved the fact that when WB left the room, Mr. P even cried for him. I have never had a doubt that WB would make a wonderful father, and spending this time with WB and Mr. P simply confirms it for me. I'm sitting at my desk smiling like a fool at the mere memory of the two of them, both adorable in their own way, playing together on the floor. I don't even know who was cuter. I do know that I fell in love with WB just a little bit more, if that's even possible. Just as I do every time he talks to the Little Funky Monkey (which at least once a day, if not more)...its amazing how each moment of this journey plunges us even further into the depths of a truly beautiful intimacy.

But I got a little off track there with my sappy happens. Blame it on the damn hormones.

Zuzu has been an angel from the get-go, helping me with everything from lending me maternity clothes to helping me when I thought I was going to have to change midwives due to a particularly nasty interaction with a particularly nasty nurse at her practice. Last night, after offering me a half gallon of milk to take home, she busts out this rather large plastic baby tub overflowing with baby clothes and says its ours. What?! We won the baby clothes jackpot! And they're boy clothes, which means we can use them no matter what we're having (I have absolutely no problem dressing a girl in blue, in fact I like the idea). There is so much booty in our treasure chest, its super exciting! Of course when we got home I had to take out and examine absolutely every single item of clothing that was in there, cooing and ooohing over everything in sight.We also got a Snugli and a portable chair that attaches to a table, to take to restaurants from Zuzu as well...we totally scored the good stuff.

8 1/2 weeks and we already have baby stuff! Wow!

WB says that the Little Funky Monkey isn't even born yet and already owns more clothing than he does, which is probably true. (And its much cuter...)

Monday, June 11, 2007

8 Weeks and Slightly Cheating or The Great Bloat

I'm really kind of cheating here, because I took the photo in the morning, before eating a single thing and with my arms raised straight into the air. Really, I'm actually bigger by the end of the day after all the meals have collected in my tummy and are lying there waiting for my sluggish digestive system to turn off the TV, get off the couch, and start processing some food dammit! But if this is empty tummy bloat...well, just use your imagination.

I saw my dear dear friend Mr. Artsy Hotpants yesterday and the first thing he said to me was "Oh! You don't really look pregnant, you just look like you have a fat stomach!" I loved him infinitely in that moment for being the one person to actually admit the truth. Later he was on the phone to our mutual friend Vixanne, and said "Either Synge is showing already or she's just sticking out her stomach", to which Vixanne promptly replied, "Maybe she's just bloated"...and indeed I am. According to the pregnancy books, my uterus is still way down deep inside me, so what you're seeing is all bloating and gas. Lovely, huh? I feel oh so attractive, let me tell you.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Long Overdue

This post is long overdue, not the baby. Don't worry, we have some time yet....we're only about 8 weeks along (technically, we will be 8 weeks this Saturday) .

However I've been meaning to create a baby blog for some time now, and have just been far too exhausted and/or lazy to do so yet...but hey, I'm building a baby here...that's hard work you know! I actually did write one post about finding out we were prego - its oh-so-usefully sitting at home in a file on my computer awaiting judgement day or perhaps a decent stolen wifi connection, and its any one's call as to which of those will happen first. In the meantime, I've decided to plunge right in, in my hodge podge kamikaze style, and inundate you with all sorts of details and observations you probably won't want to hear, but things that I'd very much like to record so that one day they can be used to embarrass the teenage version of our wonderful little blessing.

Pregnancy so far...

My first thought was that pregnancy is like a bladder infection, because you just have to pee all the time. I might as well set up camp in the bathroom, complete with a little stove and pillow and sleeping bag for all the time I spend in there. And our bathroom is a teeny tiny refashioned hallway that you have to enter and walk through sideways...not an ideal place to suddenly be spending the majority of my time.

Now, I have amended the earlier analysis to say that pregnancy is actually like having mono (which I have had a whopping 3 times, so I'm pretty familiar with it). The exhaustion is that complete and all encompassing. For those who have never had mono, imagine you've been run over flat by a herd of stampeding elephants. Now imagine that one is sitting on your entire body and not planning on moving, oh, for another month or so. Yup, that should just about do it.

Luckily, the whole nausea thing isn't all that bad thus far. I mean, don't get me wrong, I've had my share of feeling like rats are clawing the inside of my stomach, but so far it hasn't interfered all that much with daily life and I've really only vomited once and then I was in a feverish hell of strep throat torture so I'm not sure that counts. Now I must go knock on wood and throw salt over my shoulder and not walk under any ladders just because I think I just tempted fate a whole lot by even writing this paragraph. If you don't hear from me for a while, you'll know why.

The rest is pretty standard stuff - sensitive breasts (and by sensitive I mean one night the Wild Boar was cuddling me and accidentally put his hand on my breast and I screamed like a woman being attacked by ferocious hyenas. you know, just slightly tender...), insane appetite, food aversions for unhealthy things like orange juice, oranges, and fish (my body is protecting me from these harmful products, clearly), perhaps a little moodiness (and by moodiness I mean bursting into tears if I breathe), you know...standard stuff. Also, I seemed to have developed what the Boar refers to as my pregnant superpower...that is the amazing ability to smell anything and everything within a 3 state radius, and generally become nauseated by it. While this superpower can be fun when accurately pinpointing exactly what your partner drank when he went out after work, its not so ideal when you live in New York City and people urinate in the street on a somewhat regular basis. Plus its summer, and that means the garbage on the street gets to cook all day long long in one gigantic smelly crock-pot of sewage. Yummy! What endless fun!

Don't even ask about the me, you don't want to know...

And now, despite wanting to write much more, I must go crawl under my desk and nap while sobbing profusely, because you see, there's an elephant sitting on my entire body so I'm exhausted, and really, the office stinks..