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Five Months and updates

Oster Visit July 2010

Five Months!

Lillian turned five months old last Sunday! How crazy is that? It is crazy. She’s outgrowing clothes and keeping her parents on their toes (and shoving her fingers up her nose). Yes, parenthood brings on spontaneous rhyming.

Lillian is a great sitter these days, with very few faceplants. She can stand with just a little support. She’s starting to work up to her hands and knees, rocking a bit, and scooting backwards. She’s sleeping on her tummy now in a sleep sack instead of a swaddle. She’s eating rice cereal once a day. It’s all very strange.

Her personality is more fabulous all the time. She loves dancing, giggling, squawking, and banging things.

She got to meet her Nana Nancy, Grampa Dave, Uncle Shaun, Aunt Kris, and Cousin Saraphina last weekend. She looooooved all the attention. Uncle Shaun had her in stitches:

Uncle Shaun is Magic

Oster Austin visit July 10

Lillian wants the sippy cup.

Oster Austin visit July 10

With Nana Nancy

Oster Visit July 2010

Lillian and Saraphina

Oster Visit July 2010

With Grampa George

She got to spend lots of time with her grandparents, go swimming, and generally be the belle of the ball.

Lillian bellydances with Uncle Shaun

Or not.

I thought maybe the nausea was getting better, but late Thursday afternoon through bedtime last night was HELL. Worst I’ve had in weeks, possibly the worst so far. And let me say, my mental hygiene deteriorates rapidly when I feel like that much ass. I thought maybe it was my fault for cutting back on the Zofran, but my boobs got sorer, so  I think it was more like a mighty hormone surge.

It turns out nobody really knows what causes the nausea that often occurs with pregnancy. 80% of women have it to some degree. As long as it’s not the really bad kind (where you can’t keep water or food down for the whole pregnancy) it correlates with a safer pregnancy. Curses! Some research shows it’s related to progesterone levels and the subsequent slowing of the digestive system.  One study decided it was the result of “hysteria.” You’ve got to love the medical industry. That one couldn’t be reproduced, btw.

Anyway, I’m back on the Zofran until further notice. Hopefully it will take the edge off. Hopefully that last surge of ick is my body’s final hurrah before the blessedness that is supposed to be the second trimester kicks in.

I’m not eating enough vegetables these days. I’m pretty much living on frozen meals – Amy’s Organics and Lean Cuisine. They’re both relatively healthy brands and the portion size is just right – enough to eat but not too much. If I go out I’ll often eat a little more than I need resulting in, you guessed it, more nausea. Exercise has been challenging, but we’re mostly keeping up the walking in the evenings. I’ve laid off the yoga a bit as it keeps re-inflaming that injury I can’t shake. Belly dance seems to be okay, as long as I don’t exceed my one-hour limit. When I do, things go south rapidly.

So far this morning I feel reasonably okay. Fingers crossed I don’t have another day like yesterday. Amen.

Balancing Act

2812balancingMy body continues to be weird. I’m finding some kind of balance between the two medications referenced in the last entry. The nausea stuff doesn’t work all the time, but it’s still better than before. My latest fun is  old injuries cropping up and disappearing randomly. I’ll stretch out one area and it will move to the other side. It’s odd and frustrating. I don’t know how much just to work through these things, or how much to lay off. It’s really unlike normal little pulls or pains. I guess trying to be sane about it is best. There’s this whole thing where your body produces relaxin, which loosens up your ligaments and stuff. So I’m trying to stretch out the injured feeling areas, but not too much. And exercise anyway, but not too much.

I made it through a weekend of belly dancing, including a competition. I wish I’d had the stamina to take more classes. I think in general I’ve been lounging a bit too much, but I hate going outside right now, even getting in and out of my car. Still, inactivity is hard on my body and brain, so I think I’ll try to take more excursions this week. Maybe even do some photography if its reasonably cool in the mornings. I still mean to drag David to the gym some nights, mindless air-conditioned cardio is fairly appealing right now.

The nice thing about the nausea meds is I don’t have to eat all the time.  I think they make me a bit more tired. Still, I’m getting more sleep overall now which is probably good.

It’s totally bizarre how people treat you when you’re pregnant. If asked,  I’m honest about how difficult it’s been so far, I get a lot of “well you wanted this,” and variations of “buck up, little soldier!” (though not from other mothers, they just wince and say “oooh, sorry”)

One of the most profound I’ve  learned from group therapy is how difficult it is to just let other people have their feelings. I struggle as much as anyone else with trying not to fix, or dismiss, or minimize other people’s pain. And I mean well when I do those things. But it’s amazing how much more healing it is for the other person when you just let them have their feeling and don’t judge, don’t fix, and don’t prescribe. Indulging in those behaviors is  often just us trying to ease our own discomfort — not theirs.  I think letting people have their feelings shows faith in their ability to deal with the emotion/situation, where the other responses tend to communicate doubt. All I know is, it’s a big relief when someone just says,  “I’m so sorry,” or “I hope you feel better soon.” It certainly is a good reminder for me to do the same.

Being pregnant, at least right now, is like having a low level stomach flu most of the time. Now if I had one of those normally, I’d be at home drinking lots of fluids, not eating much, and resting. The weirdness of pregnancy is you actually need a good dose of that prescription, but also the opposite. You have to try and stay somewhat active, you have to eat (more than you want to), and too much time alone is not good for the brain. I don’t think there’s any perfect balance, just daily adjustments.

I’m ten weeks on Thursday, two moreish until the end of the first trimester. My doctor said the nausea should be tapering off this week. I hope so! Looking forward to what is supposed to be the fun phase. In pre-natal yoga everyone does kind of a check in at the beginning. The 2nd trimester women are always, “I’m great!” I want to go to there.

We're like tribbles

So I found out yesterday that another friend is pregnant. I now have two friends who are due within a month of me. Everywhere I go, I see pregnant ladies. I think it’s the recession, man. Going out less=more home-based entertainment. It’s either the Wii or the goat dance.

Notice the time stamp on this entry? Oh yeah. I’m blaming the insomnia on myself this time. I stayed up too late watching Hulu. Hulu is my nemesis. When I stay up watching tv I have a really hard time winding down. I haven’t had cable since David and I got together. This has been good for us in many ways, but I’m starting to think that mindless television is going to be just what the doctor ordered when I have a small person attached to me half the day. In the meantime, however, I really have to remember turn off the tv-computer at 11pm.

Dance class went swimmingly. I’m finding that pregnancy is much like having a low-grade flu or cold, just with different symptoms. My immune system is lower, digestion is slower, and I’m tired a lot. And it seems that just like with mild illness; the symptoms abate during exercise, and come back after. I’m going to stick with the dancing for as long as I can.

cheeseburgerI’m still trying to figure out the whole food thing. Eat too much? Get sick. Eat too little? Get sick. Until yesterday, I thought I was going to give birth to a squirrel or a rabbit. I’d been subsisting mainly on dried fruit and nuts. But last night I got smacked with a major craving: Cheeseburger and fries. Holy crap! Note to self, GIVE IN TO CRAVINGS. I felt like a new person after. And the fries craving was really as a vehicle for ketchup. Who the hell craves ketchup? Me, apparently. Mighty Fine was there for me.

I feel as if there’s this tyrannical, miniature, Napoleon-like being in my uterus issuing loud but unintelligible orders. Speak English!

Have I mentioned my skin yet? Probably not. Let’s just say ARGH! I love all-over-face-breakouts. I get this sometimes when I travel. It looks like a mild rash. I’m ready for it to be over now please. It’s easy to cover up with my beloved Bare Minerals, but it’s itchy and lame. I have pregnancy-safe skin stuff from my dermatologist, but it’s not doing the trick at the moment.

My asthma doctor switched my inhaler and so far it’s not doing the trick. It’s a steroid only, instead of the combo which had worked so well for me. I’m hoping the reduced efficacy is temporary, I seem to remember that steroid inhalors can take a while to start working. Otherwise I’ve got to go back to the doc and try something else.

That’s it for now. More minutae to come.

Fun with Food

Eating is a new adventure in many ways. The dietary restrictions for the gravid are myriad and confusing. No caffeine – except it’s actually okay. No alcohol, except some doctors say it’s fine. No sushi (whaaa). Then there’s the whole soft cheese thing. No feta, blue cheese, goat cheese, or queso fresco. Except if it’s cooked or made with pasteurized milk. Okaaay. No cured meats – except if they’re cooked. So I can continue to make quiche lorraine, for example. But a couple of my faves – smoked salmon and prosciutto are out.

The nausea thing is so far sporadic. I seem to get a wave of it around 10am, but if I gnaw on some trail mix it usually abates. Getting a handle on my insomnia helped a lot. Exhaustion and stomach issues are non-mixy things. Other random symptoms are headaches and insane tiredness, even now that I’m a bit more caught up on my sleep.

Mad props to my husband for strongly suggesting I avoid the endless napping so I can actually sleep at night. It worked!  I miss my naps which I love like I love  cookies. Hopefully I can sneak some limited napping back in soon.

My body seems to grow and shrink daily (except my chest which just grows). I read on the internets that this is normal, but it’s odd. My rings will be loose, and then I won’t be able to take them off. I had to give up my Walmart Bride ring because I was afraid it would get stuck.

I’ve been working on the Ultimate Snack Mix for my purse. So far it’s a combo of carrot chips, Starbucks Fruit and Nuts mix (those little packets they have at checkout), more almonds, more cashews, and some dried mango. Carrot chips rule! Why did no one tell me how tasty they are?

I’m also addicted to Yoga Yoga’s tea. It’s got a tiny bit of caffeine in it and is very soothing to my stomach.  I’ve attempted to make it at home with limited success. I’m going to tweak the recipe a bit and let you know how it goes.

I tried a bit of my new prenatal yoga dvd yesterday. It’s a vinyasa series, so it’s fairly vigorous. The instructor is painfully sing-songy, but the exercises themselves are good. I’m taking less intense classes, so it’s good to have an alternative that’s a bit more ass-kicking. There is also a partner yoga section that I’m hoping to convince David to try with me. I’ve been taking hatha and prenatal classes at Yoga Yoga and I’ve found a few teachers I really feel comfortable with. There’s also a newer studio near our house that is stunningly beautiful. Big windows with views into a wooded area, it doesn’t get much more serene.

The prenatal class I went to last week was great. It’s really a cross between a yoga class and a support group. It’s reassuring to be with women at all stages of pregnancy.

I’m planning on continuing bellydancing barring doctor restriction, but I’m a little worried about my stamina at the moment. I took a three hour workshop last week and pretty much pooped out by the third hour. Tonight is my first regular class since I found out I was pregnant. Class is only an hour and a half, but it’s pretty ass-kicking sometimes. We also have a big competition coming up and I’m a little worried about my ability to keep up with rehearsals. There’s also the fuzzy brain thing – when I get tired I pretty much can’t put two thoughts together. I hear this only gets worse.

That’s the news from the couch in Austin. Hope everyone is having a great weekend.