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Archive for the ‘Pregnant’ Category

Nice (and not so nice) Things to Say to Preggos

I am an absolute master of saying the wrong thing in any situation! In case you’re like me, I thought I would share with you my favorite compliments as well as things you might want to avoid saying to a pregnant lady.

Things I loved to hear:

“You don’t even look pregnant from the back!”

“You’re all baby!” (in the context that said pregnant lady doesn’t look like she’s gained weight anywhere besides the belly)

Anything that made me feel pretty!

Thing I know some women love to hear but I wasn’t super keen on:

“You’re glowing!” (I know it’s meant as a compliment, but my crazy self always heard that as “Wow… you’re sweaty!” And I know no one means it that way, but I was always sweating uncontrollably when they said it to me.)

Things I would suggest avoiding:

Anything along the lines of “you’re so/really/too small!” or “you’re so/really/too large!” (I’ve found as a pregnant lady, that I’m already a little insecure about the way my body looks – especially in the beginning when I didn’t look super pregnant but more like I ate too many muffins that day – so calling it out in that way made me awkward like a teenager. Also, when you decide I’m too big or too small it makes me feel like I’m doing something wrong. No woman wants to feel like she’s doing wrong by her baby. Instead, go with one of the above, or just tell her she looks lovely.)

“Wow, you still haven’t had that baby yet!?” (No I haven’t, and what’s wrong with that!? Instead, ask again when she’s due – in a nice, supportive way, not a judgemental way – or ask how she’s feeling.)

“Are you ready?” (I personally didn’t know what this one meant but EVERYONE asked it! I wasn’t sure if they meant “have you set everything up for this baby?” or “I bet you can’t wait to get that thing out of your body!” It usually sounded like the latter, which was then awkward because I’m not one of those women in a lot of pain and wanting the escape. Also… I’m not one of those women who has anything set up… the nursery is still filled with unpacked boxes from our move. Again, with this one, I would recommend asking how she’s feeling or if you want to know about a nursery, ask about it.)

Random thoughts:

I noticed a specific trend on Facebook that I thought I would share. Whenever I post something on Facebook about being pregnant, I get two types of responses.

First for reference, this is the type of stuff I post on Facebook (and the frequency):

Facebook Status

Now, the types of responses:

From people my own age, I get things like:

  • “But you look great!” (from someone who saw me the day before)
  • “Your baby is holding out for Arrested Development!”
  • “That little bun just wants to fully bake!”
  • “Where are pictures? We want to see how cute you look!”
  • “My birthday is 3 days away, hold on for then, it’s a great birthday!”

I liked all of these!

From people in my parents’ generation, I get one of three things:

  • I either get them trying to educate me on very basic things (“Due dates are only guesses, not guarantees!” No kidding…)
  • Trying to give me tips on how to induce (which leads them all to fight with each other on my status about whether or not Mexican food works… considering I’ve had Mexican twice this week because I love it, I don’t think it works, but whatever. Also, I’m in no rush to induce myself yet. So they are offering advice I don’t need yet. When I have a Facebook post asking for induction ideas, I will welcome these comments.)
  • Telling me all about their pregnancy like mine will somehow replicate it. If they want to share stories, that’s totally fine by me. I actually like hearing birth stories. I’m just not a huge fan of how theirs are coming across as “so you’ll be like this, too.” I feel like birth stories should be prefaced as “this is how it happened for me” not “this is how it happens for everyone.” Because really, everyone’s seem to be different! I don’t think I’m explaining it well, but I’ve gotten a lot of “I was late!” “I was late and miserable! I bet you are too!” “I cried every day I was late. And then my baby was huge and labor was terrible!” “You look like me.” (Umm…how so? We’re not related.)

I think there is this stereotype going around that pregnancy is miserable, so it’s ok to tell a woman how miserable she must be. I would instead recommending asking.

And really, the best thing you can say to a pregnant lady is an honest compliment.

Good luck!

Any other suggestions on nice things to say to pregnant ladies from anyone who is/has been pregnant? Do you think I got any of these wrong/you felt differently?

Body Images – Part 5

Ok… it’s totally been a month since I last posted anything. Sorry about that. I’ve written a bunch of drafts, but then my inability to focus takes over and they remain half-finished.

It’s also been 2 months since I last posted a real update on my pregnancy. So here goes!

My due date was May 26th (Sunday) and today is the 29th. I’m 3 days “overdue” and I’m 100% ok with that! I had an appointment with my doctor yesterday and she doesn’t think this baby will be coming anytime soon. I’m also ok with that, for a few reasons:

  1. I’ve been told that fatter babies are happier babies. Because they have more body fat to live off, they can sleep a little longer and their feedings are a little more spread apart. I hear that as more sleep and I love that idea!
  2. I’m pretty sure babies are easier to care for on the inside than the outside, so I don’t mind a few extra days.
  3. What’s the rush? I plan to know this kid for the rest of my life, what’s another few days of waiting? Plus, I know where it is! It’s not like I need to be nervous because he/she is missing. I get kicked, I know he/she is in there and doing fine.
  4. I’m not super uncomfortable!
  5. There is a “community festival” within walking distance from my house this Saturday and there will be fried dough! I can wait a few days for a baby if there is a promise of fried dough! 🙂

Comfort level: Yes, I’m normal pregnant uncomfortable, but I’m not SUPER uncomfortable. I haven’t been plagued with sciatica. I sleep ok for the most part (better than I would if I had a baby who needs to eat every 2 hours, that’s for sure). And I don’t have toxemia/pre-eclampsia so I really have nothing to complain about. I can “take one for the team” and wait another week or so, it’s ok.

For weeks I was really “suffering” (comparatively) from swollen feet. It was painful to put them on the floor in the morning. Socks were too tight (even men’s socks), and I only had two pairs of shoes that fit my Stay-Puffed Marshmallow feet. But then T’s sister showed him a technique to help get rid of the water retention in the feet. Now, T gives me a very specific foot massage every night and life is good again. I have ankle bones again! My feet don’t hurt when I get out of bed! It’s awesome! Plus, I’m working from home full-time now and keeping my feet elevated, so that’s helping as well. I’m probably a little more comfortable now than I was 3 weeks ago.

Still crazy: I still have an innie belly button! Love it! It’s really sensitive to the touch though. I’ve always hated it touched… so this isn’t really new, it just seems like more people want to touch it (and by more people, I mean that T finds it funny to touch because it’s so shallow and the sonographer LOVES to use it as a target for where to put the ultrasound sensor…)

Food: I’ve never had a real pregnancy craving. Yes, I took the food suggestions from baby websites, but I never had a moment where I HAD to eat anything. Also, much to many people’s disappointment, I never craved meat during my pregnancy (I’ve been a vegetarian for over 20 years…)

Dreams: Lots of people also ask if I’ve had dreams about the baby, foretelling gender, etc. I have not. I don’t remember any dreams where I really see the baby in any real way. I would say that we’re still sort of strangers at this point (although I’m pretty sure the baby loves Mexican food… that always generates a dance party).

Gender: I certainly have no guess at the gender. Lots of people think we know the gender but we really don’t. We often call the baby “he” but that’s only because we’ve gotten a little sick of saying “he or she” so we’re lazy and stop after the first part.

“Eviction:” Lots of people, who aren’t my doctor, like to tell me to get induced. As of yesterday, my doctor says that she wouldn’t recommend inducing right now, my body is so not ready to have a baby that she doesn’t think it would work. She thinks I’d end up with a c-section and she’s glad I’m happy to wait. Plus, T and I think if we wait too far into June, we’d prefer to try all of the hippy methods of induction first: going for walks, acupressure, acupuncture, chiropractic, some super spicy Indian food, etc.

So yep, that’s about it! No baby but no angst either.


Week 33

Week 35 Week 36

Taken on the baby's estimated delivery date! I'm all red and puffy because T likes to play sappy love songs that make me cry!

Taken on the baby’s estimated delivery date! I’m all red and puffy because T likes to play sappy love songs that make me cry!

And for a fun comparison:

Wow... apparently I had a favorite shirt for taking these pictures!

Wow… apparently I had a favorite shirt for taking these pictures!


Baby Size or Diet Suggestion?

When I first found out I was pregnant, I was super excited to check out those baby size calculators online… Until I realized how BORING they are in the beginning!

Your baby is the size of:

  • a grain of rice
  • a peppercorn
  • a caper

Woo! Excitement!

So I stopped checking. Around Christmas, my absolutely adorable sister-in-law asked if I knew the size. And I didn’t and I felt a little bad for not knowing any of that type of stuff (I may have been a little detached in the beginning… or I was too busy planning puzzles to think about size)… so I started checking again. That first week I looked into it again, Booger was the size of a green pepper. Mmm… green pepper… The next week, Booger was the size of a mango… yummy… mango!

Seriously, all I wanted was a green pepper and a mango to eat! Which I vaguely feared made me a bad person (does it count as cannibalism?)… but mango is delicious! And then I started to notice a trend. These websites that talk about baby size never use any object besides food. Booger was never the size of a stapler, a golf ball, or a softball. However, Booger was the size of 3 limes one week and 4 oranges another. How am I supposed to configure them?! Oranges

Additionally, the food suggestions are always healthy! I was never carrying around a Twinkie, a cupcake, or a pie…

I’m on to you, baby websites! Clearly you are just trying to influence my eating!

(Um… it totally worked… but that’s besides the point!)

Baby Shower Tips – Time Frame

I just had my baby shower this past weekend (I had a great time! I promise to post all about it) – but I also had to do a lot of the planning. I’ve planned baby showers for some of my friends, but it was interesting to see it from both sides. I learned a lot of lessons and I thought I would share those with the internet in case anyone out there is looking for some tips.

Why did I do a lot of the planning for my own baby shower? Well, because my friend and my mother wanted to hold the shower a week or two before my due date and that stressed me out! So I jumped up and started arranging things myself.

After finding out it was slated to be so late, I immediately sat down with my mother, created some invitations, and we picked the closest possible date that would allow the invitations to arrive, be addressed, mailed out, and then give people a little time to consider their schedules. Had anyone asked me ahead of time, I would have requested the baby shower be held a month earlier (I’m due at the end of May, the shower was at the end of April, and I would have preferred the shower in March).

The first thing I learned is that some people think of a due date similarly to a wedding date – the shower just has to be before that date. But due dates for babies aren’t really the same at all because babies can come whenever they feel like it.

The “due date” is really just the date of the 40th week. An average, healthy baby will typically arrive anytime between the 38th week and the 42nd week. Also, as informed by my doctor, if a baby reaches 34 weeks of gestation and decides it’s time, the medical staff isn’t going to stop labor. If the baby wants to show up at week 34, it’s showing up at week 34!

The baby shower was on my 35th week so I was having all sorts of stress dreams that the baby would show up before the shower (or in some of the dreams, AT the shower) and I would be completely unprepared.

My friend wanted the party so late because “everyone wants to see you as big as possible.” I get the reasoning, I do. However, the bigger the pregnant lady, the more uncomfortable she is and the easier she gets tired.

There is also an entire list of things that the pregnant lady will have to do after the party. I imagine all of these things are easier to do pregnant than with a baby:

  • Write thank you cards to everyone
  • Figure out where all of these lovely gifts will live (aka set up the nursery)
  • Wash the baby clothes
  • Assemble anything that needs assembling (cribs, swings, pack and plays, etc) – yes, this might be done by the father or any other handy friends and/or family, but they still need some time
  • Assess the gifts: are there any duplicates that she needs to return? Did she receive a lot of “nice to have” items but none of the “need to have” items? (For example, you can’t take a baby home from the hospital without a car seat…) Were the majority of her gifts gift cards that she’ll need to go spend on the “need to have” items? (Wandering around a store while your core muscles are carrying around something as big as a large piece of fruit can be exhausting)

So for those reasons and others, I would recommend having the baby shower at least 2 months before the due date.

Good luck and happy planning!

Crazy Wishes

Since I’ve already shared some of my less popular feelings about babies, I thought I would tell you about all of my silly hopes for this baby.

I assume that every parent hopes their baby is healthy, happy, is completely baked, and has all of their anatomy built correctly. I’m sure at least most parents hope their child is some combination of  smart, funny, nice, driven, sympathetic, compassionate, witty, humane, etc. And of course I hope for all of those things, too. But here are some of my sillier hopes, and I hope you get a kick out of my nutty list:

I hope that Booger gets either my dark hair or my wonderful boyfriend’s predominant freckles. T and I are both PALE people (T literally glows blue in the sunlight and I have NEVER had a tan in my entire life). If Booger gets my weak freckles and T’s light brown hair, I’m not sure we’ll ever see this transparent child.  

This is an old picture from when I tried to rock a pixie cut like a decade ago (I failed). But look at the glow on that skin! There's no filter used... that's just what I look like in the sunlight...

This is an old picture from when I tried to rock a pixie cut like a decade ago (I failed). But look at the glow on that skin! There’s no filter used… that’s just what I look like in the sunlight…

I hope Booger gets my eyesight and T’s perfect teeth. I don’t wear glasses or contacts (T does) and the dentist practically sings love songs to T’s teeth whenever he’s in there for a cleaning.

I hope Booger gets T’s musical and sports abilities. T can play 5 instruments and I’ve taken lessons for 4 instruments but can’t play any of them. I have zero rhythm! T used to play songs for me on the guitar and even if it was my favorite song I wouldn’t know it unless he sang the words (seriously – I’m musically stupid. I’m mostly ok with it). And when it comes to sports, I can pretty much only catch a ball with my face! My wonderful boyfriend, on the other hand, played sports from 5th grade through the end of high school and was actually good!

I hope Booger can draw like T as well. When we were in college (and had absolutely no money), T used to draw flowers for me and they were so lovely I still have them. He’s an architect… I think an ability to draw might be a prerequisite.

I hope Booger is a deep sleeper like I am instead of a crazy light sleeper like T.

This is me and my sweet boy cat. I'm not actually sleeping since the light is on (and I'm propped up on an additional pillow) but T thought it would make for a better picture... but I do often sleep with the cat like that - he puts himself there and I just enjoy it

This is me and my sweet boy cat. I’m not actually sleeping since the light is on (and I’m propped up on an additional pillow) but T thought it would make for a better picture… but I do often sleep with the cat like that – he puts himself there and I just enjoy it

I hope Booger likes to cook, because I sure as heck don’t!

I hope Booger has a love of animals. I’m pretty sure that’s a learned trait though… so I think we’ll be ok.

I hope Booger is willing to try new things from foods to adventures like T and I are.

Of course I will love my child completely even if he/she doesn’t get a single one of these traits… although I’m really hoping for the dark hair or dark freckles… otherwise he/she might just be too transparent to find!

Do you have any silly wishes for your kids (real or hypothetical)? Any traits of yours or your partner’s that you’d want passed along?

I’m Not That Lady – Baby Crazy

Disclaimer: there is nothing wrong with being “that lady.” In fact, I think in all of the situations where I think about “that lady,” “she” is the standard and I’m the odd duck. And feeling like an odd duck, I thought I would take to the blogging world to hopefully find other odd ducks with me. I’m not trying to bash “that lady,” I think the world wants me to be “that lady” and I’m just not good at it. If you are that lady, rock out and go you! Read the others in this series: Counting in Weeks and Passionate About Birth Plans

When I first started telling everyone that I was pregnant, many people had the same reaction: “Are you super excited for a baby?!”

Well actually… no…

Don’t get me wrong! I’m super excited for a child, I’m just not super excited for a baby. (Although everyone always jumps to tell me that I’ll love my own… yes, I’m sure that’s true. I’m pretty sure nature designs it that way.)

To me, new babies sleep and eat and poo and are still working on brain development so they aren’t super exciting (plus, whenever I hold other people’s babies, they always start wailing!). I’m not one of those ladies that simply lives to smell a baby’s head. I saw a National Geographic documentary on Netflix that described a baby that is less than 3 months old as still a fetus – because they are still so dependant on someone. It makes complete sense to me. And I’m not faulting babies for that – he/she is busy building a big brain! I’m just not most enthusiastic about that stage of care-taking.

Babies seem like a lot of work to me (rightfully so!). In fact, the only reason I thought I could take on that daunting task was because of an interaction I had with my cat one day. When my sweet little girl cat was about 8 months old (not really a full-sized cat, but she had grown out of the baby phase), she fell asleep in my arms on her back. Her little face was close to mine and I literally watched her breathe for 15 full minutes, she was enchanting. I figured if I could get that much pleasure out of watching my cat, surely I could muster up the same or more for my own kid.

But I’m SUPER excited about having a little person. I’m really looking forward to bad knock-knock jokes and stories about how their day went at school, and watching all of the learning that takes place from learning to walk to tying their shoes to driving. That all seems amazing to me!

One night, I literally stressed out about “how old do they have to be before I can teach them about satire?!”

This thought was brought on this book:

Seriously, if you’ve never read it, you should. It’s terrific in all the wrong ways. Here’s an example of the back cover, but the whole book is so entertaining:

ABZ back cover

So I’m probably a terrible person for admitting it. I’m not one of those ladies who is most looking forward to the first few months of my child’s life (although I absolutely plan to be committed to that time frame and I’m sure I will love him/her). But I am 100% looking forward to every year after that!

(However, during the last ultrasound, we got to see Booger‘s little lips in action – and at first I thought they were making a little kissy face, but then the tongue started doing its thing and it looked more like he/she was trying to lick something off his/her bottom lip – I pictured it as a practice run for apple sauce. I’m sure it was more of a practice run for nursing… but my mind went to apple sauce first… And that was pretty neat! Of course I was flooded with love, just as I fully expect to be once I get to meet him/her – but doesn’t the potty-trained stage of a person’s life seem so much more enchanting?!)

Body Image – Part 4

I’ve finally hit the point where I feel huge. I feel like I waddle everywhere. In my last preggo update I was about to be tested for gestational diabetes. I passed! I don’t have it! Yay! When I got the results, my wonderful boyfriend and I celebrated with a cookie… seems reasonable, no?

My latest physical obsession: My ankles. Or rather, my cankles. This process started slowly… I would come home from work at the end of the day and I felt like I had muffin tops over my socks.

picture this… but as my calves over my socks

And it was weird… but that phase has long passed. After the muffin top ankles, I lost my ankle bones on the inside. Then I lost the ankle bones on the outside. I miss seeing those bones. I hope they come back someday. Now I have puffy ankles… and puffy feet (seriously, I think my feet are an inch taller on the top!) and puffy little toes. This little piggy isn’t going to the market or going wee, wee, wee. It’s staying home, elevated, on the couch! I’ve grown out of all but one pair of shoes. Luckily T’s 11-year-old niece has bigger feet than I do, so I was gifted a pair of shoes that she grew out of. Yay!

How I feel physically: Generally, I’m feeling good, but tired. Because of the move (and my regular yoga class was cancelled), I’ve missed about a month of yoga classes and I can feel it! I’m starting to get all of those lame aches and pains associated with pregnancy, but nothing major so I’m not complaining!

My current bit of crazy worry: We started our childbirth classes last Sunday. We were 20 minutes late and forgot to bring the recommended pillows and yoga mat, but remembered snacks… sigh, I’m sure this hints towards some “awesome” parenting skills… We missed the introductions so we don’t know when the 7 other couples are due, but I feel like I have the smallest belly in the room (T agrees). I worry a lot about my pregnancy weight. I feel enormous, but everyone says I look small. My doctor said that by my due date, I should gain 25-35 pounds. I have a month left to go and I’ve already gained 32 pounds (I’m pretty sure 10 of those pounds are in my ankles and feet alone though). It’s rough to feel like I’m doing what I’m supposed to and still not be doing it right.

On a related note, they’ve started to “weigh” Booger. On the bell curve of baby weight, Booger is around the 30%. The doctor is ok with this (they only worry at 10%), but it made me really nervous. Do I need more vitamins? What aren’t I doing that I should be doing? A minor spiral of crazy happened. And then I thought about it a little more rationally. As a child, I was always below average for weight. No eating disorders, I just have tiny little bones (like my parents). As a fun example, I learned once that the average female ring size is a 7, most jewelers don’t carry a ring below a size 5 and I wear a 3 1/2. Yeah… little bones! So I shouldn’t be too surprised that a child I would create would be small as well.

My current bit of additional crazy happy thought: I still have an “innie” belly button! It’s super shallow but it’s not an outie!

Booger’s Movement: Still super active (which actually does make the doctor really happy – she’s says it’s a better indicator than weight, so I should stop my worrying). We’ve started to be able to see Booger move (without the ultrasound)! Such a trip! Booger also gets the hiccups a lot (websites say it doesn’t bother Booger, but I hate when I get the hiccups, so I can’t image that he/she likes them!) As of last week, I can now watch Booger’s hiccups (my belly bounces) – so odd!

Food: No odd food cravings as of yet. Everyone asks, but nope – I’m still loving everything I’ve always normally loved and I’m happy with variety. I will admit that I have eaten pickles and ice cream… but I’ve been doing that since I was 7, so I don’t think it counts!

Pictures: I’m super behind on these. I was trying to do every odd week, but with fixing up the new house and then the move, I missed a week… so now it’s random weeks whenever I happen to remember…

I tucked in the shirt a little to better highlight the belly

I tucked in the shirt a little to better highlight the belly

After some home renovations, hence the crazy hair (I literally cropped a mountain of tools out of this picture). Also it's a sneak peak to the new paint job in our kitchen!

After some home renovations, hence the crazy hair (I literally cropped a mountain of tools out of this picture). Also it’s a sneak peak to the new paint job in our kitchen!

And for a little comparison:

Only a 3 week difference, but I feel like the belly got so much bigger! Plus, both pictures feature the "I'm not really awake yet" face!

Only a 3 week difference, but I feel like the belly got so much bigger! Plus, both pictures feature the “I’m not really awake yet” face!

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