Friday, August 28, 2009

Bed Rest Blues

Bed rest sucks!

My blood pressure related to my swelling was elevated on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week, (at one point, it was 142/83) so at my appointment, Dr. Schwartz thought it would be best put me on a somewhat-relaxed bed rest so that we could keep it under control. Several people have asked, "why can't you just have her now?" And the truth is, I totally can. Yes, I am miserable and yes, if she came right now, we'd welcome her with open arms, but it really is best to keep her in there a while longer. Most importantly, I'm not on bed rest to keep labor from starting, but to control the BP and swelling- totally different. If labor started now, they definitely wouldn't stop it. In fact, my water broke with Preston just one day from where I am now and he did great. However, if BP spikes, we would need to induce and that's definitely not what we want. Statistically, induced labors are typically longer, harder, and more frequently end in cesarean section deliveries. None of these are high on my wish-list! Ideally, I want to make it to 38 weeks, which is this coming Wednesday, but would be fine if she waits longer. Also at my appointment, the doctor did an internal check- I'm still "maybe a fingertip" dilated, 50% effaced and -2 station engagement, so please keep your fingers and toes crossed that we make it through the weekend and labor will begin on it's own. I've had several contractions this morning, so we'll see.

In the meantime, my mom, stepmom and mother in law have been helping with Preston and keeping him occupied while I am in bed. Wonderful friends like Kristin and Holli have brought snacks and kept me company, and Dr. Schwartz did agree to allow me to get a pedicure yesterday, which was wonderful. I'm bored to tears, but have keeping up with the news, my email and facebook, and thank God for online shopping. The biggest catch of being on bed rest at the end of a pregnancy is that it's truly a biological need to "nest" and get ready for the baby, which I am not able to do. I desperately want to be vacuuming, dusting, folding clothes, organizing her room, etc... Thankfully, the cleaning ladies are coming on Monday, and I'll be more prepared at least in the way of having a clean house. But I'm constantly making mental preparation notes and to-do lists, especially when I'm awake at night since sleep is just a fleeting thought these days.

So, that's our update for now- stay tuned!

Monday, August 24, 2009

As the time draws near...

Call me sappy, but I'm feeling so emotional as we get closer to having this baby! Of course, it could be the hormones, but I find myself wanting to just smother-mother Preston and for Kevin and I to soak up every minute of his last days as an only child. Don't get me wrong, we are SO EXCITED to meet our sweet little girl and become a family of four. But at the same time, there's this bittersweet element to our interaction with P because he so innocently has NO idea how much his life is about to change. We talk casually to him about his baby sister who is going to live with us, he hugs my belly about 100 times a day and I know he'll be a wonderful big brother. I just want to work really hard at making him feel not only included, but an integral and irreplaceable part of us.

Speaking of, I am definitely feeling closer as each day passes. At 36 weeks and 5 days, I'm less than week away from where I was when Preston was born. I've had several sessions of regular, painful contractions- at one point last week, I was convinced we were headed to the hospital, but an internal check at my 36 week appointment thankfully showed no dilation. My blood pressure was pretty high for me, 122/90, so I'm praying that's not a sign of pre-eclampsia because I do *not* want to be put on bed rest. But there wasn't any protein in my urine, which is good. It will be interesting to see what my OB says at my 37 week appointment on Wednesday. We are REALLY hoping to make it to at least 38 weeks, which will be September 2nd, so please keep your fingers crossed! I recently read that first time labors typically last between 15-20 hours, (Preston's was 18) and second time deliveries are on average, just 8. That sounds good to me... 8 hours, I'll take it! Here's a belly pic at 36 weeks:

There's nothing quite like just waiting around to have a baby, so even though I am borderline miserable, not sleeping well, have killer heartburn and of course, the infamous cankles and swollen feet, we are still keeping really active and busy. We just returned from an overnight stay at Lake James where we celebrated Preston's birthday with my Grandma Joan, who turned 85 on the 22nd. (HAPPY BIRTHDAY, GRAMS, WE LOVE YOU!) We finally made our way to a Fort Wayne Tincaps game, had some wonderful playdates and a beautiful brunch with girlfriends, and still have some fun things planned coming up, although (JUST FOR YOU, HEATHER!) I know it's getting to be that time that I need to rest and keep my feet up as much as possible to keep the swelling down and blood pressure low. For whatever reason, I have a hard time doing that. Regardless, I plan to take it easier from now on. Here are some shots of our fun the past week, including his 2nd birthday parties as promised!

Sorry there are so many, but I'm trying to practice with our new camera as much as possible before the baby comes! :)

And playing with his cousin Emily who just turned four... (Happy B-day, sweet girl!)

And last but not least, we received sad news that Kevin's grandmother, Barbra Perdue Wade passed away last Monday. We are so saddened, yet relieved as the past eight months of her life have been more than difficult and full of suffering. Grandma Barb had a great sense of humor and Kevin has shared with me some wonderful memories of her from his childhood and years past. The Erb, Tatum and Starnes families gathered last week at her viewing and funeral to celebrate her life, and as always, had a wonderful time even while supporting one another in our time of grief. You are loved and missed, Grandma, may you rest in peace.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Happy 2nd Birthday, Preston!

Two years ago tonight, I woke up Kevin with a frantic, "get towels!" as my water broke and we tried to rush around and get out the door to Dupont Hospital. I think Kevin made it from our Tacoma house to Dupont in less than 13 minutes. (It helped that it was 1am and traffic was minimal.) We had no idea how much life would change from that moment on. I didn't have an ideal labor, but did have an ideal birth because it ended up with Preston in our arms safe and sound. I remember holding him to my chest and noticing right away that he came into the world with his eyes wide open and thinking, "gosh, he's curious already." That has certainly held true to this day and I hope it always continues.

15 hours old:

2 years old:

Looking back at the past two years, I cannot believe how much Preston has grown. He's gone from this completely dependent little lump of snuggly, crying, eating and pooping newborn-ness to a strong, smart, active and engaging little boy. I also can't believe how much Kevin and I have grown as people, as parents, and as partners and how the three of us have come together and found our groove as a family.

This past year between one and two has been such a whirlwind of change and he's handled it all wonderfully. We've moved, we've learned we're expecting another baby, he's gone from crawling to walking to running and jumping, from talking in 1 to 2 word phrases to 5 word full sentences and constantly blows us away with how much he knows. He's sweet, affectionate and funny, and we are thankful every day to have him in our lives. Preston Thomas, you truly are our pride and joy! We love you, sweet boy. Happy 2nd Birthday!!!

Today, we had a small grandparents-only get together to celebrate his big day. The coolest part of the day was seeing that he actually "got" that it was all for him. He was such a show-off and just soaked it up as we sang Happy Birthday to him. More pics to come, but I wanted to post this since we are finally using our new camera!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

34 weeks and a golf report

I hit 34 weeks pregnant today! Nothing too exciting to report, but I did get another ultrasound at my appointment. All is well, she's doing great and thankfully, is still a girl. I'm not dilated yet, blood pressure was normal, and her heartbeat was great- 156 beats per minute. My only complaint at this point is that I'm having quite a few contractions and my swelling is not only worsening, but nothing short of severe. I have pitting edema from my toes up to my knees and swelling in my hands and face. Other than that and having a hard time sleeping (who doesn't at the end, right?) I really am feeling good overall, so Kevin and I keep saying that she needs to stay put another 4-5 weeks at the very least! I am bummed we didn't get any pictures from the ultrasound, and the little stinker kept turning away from us so we couldn't see her face.

Here's an update on what the average 34 week baby is like from Baby Center:
Your baby now weighs about 4 3/4 pounds (like your average cantaloupe) and is almost 18 inches long. Her fat layers — which will help regulate her body temperature once she's born — are filling her out, making her rounder. Her skin is also smoother than ever. Her central nervous system is maturing and her lungs are continuing to mature as well. If you've been nervous about preterm labor, you'll be happy to know that babies born between 34 and 37 weeks who have no other health problems generally do fine. They may need a short stay in the neonatal nursery and may have a few short-term health issues, but in the long run, they usually do as well as full-term babies.

Ok, my confession for the week is that we STILL have not chosen a camera, but we have looked at a ton. I am telling you now that we ARE getting one within the next few days because I have a brunch for this baby girl with some girlfriends on Saturday morning, and Saturday afternoon and evening we have Kevin's cousin, Laura's wedding. It's a kid-friendly wedding so Preston will be with us for part of the reception and I can't wait to see him hit the dancefloor! Not to mention, I need to update with a new belly shot and pics of both kids' rooms. We were lucky enough to get an offer from Matt and Holli to borrow their camera for our little golf outing last week. (Thanks, guys!!) Here are a few shots of him on the links!