Tuesday, July 31, 2012

10 weeks to go!!??

30 weeks pregnant!  I can hardly believe it!  AJ is now the length of a cucumber!  Or is he?  According to the ultrasound I had last Thursday, he's probably a bit bigger than that already.  But let me start at the beginning of the story...

Thursday morning my mom, Tyler and I all piled in my van for my OB appointment.  They go with me because, well, they are there and I like to have a second set of ears around at my appointments.  Plus I was having an ultrasound and who doesn't want to see baby on ultrasound??  So we aren't two minutes down the road before we have to turn around because the road was closed due to construction.  While we were re-routing, the van started to overheat.  Very quickly.  So, new plan.  We rushed back home and I got in my mom's car. Since we didn't have time to move the car seat (and Adam wasn't there to do it) I went on to my appointment alone.

So back to my ultrasound...the tech started out by taking measurements.  Every time they take a measurement via u/s there is a little ticker thing that counts, in week and days, what the measurement is coming out to.  She measured his head, his belly, his femur, etc and each time the measurement was NOT showing up as 29 weeks, but rather in the 31-32+ week range.  She also measured the amount of fluid around the baby.  Then she told me that AJ is measuring at just under 4 lbs already!  WOW big baby!!!  I was actually a little nervous about that!  He's measuring solidly at about 32 weeks and in something like the 97% in terms of size.

So he's big.  He's also looking very healthy, which is awesome!  He was hiding the fibroid, so she couldn't see it very well, but she was pretty confidant that it hasn't grown, which is also good.

Next I had an appointment with the nurse, because my OB was on vacation.  Megan was very nice and assured me that it's okay that he's measuring a little big right now. That tells us that for now, the fibroid isn't restricting his growth, which is good.  Even though we'd check the heartbeat during the ultrasound, she measured it again with the dopplar--steady 140-150 range.  She measured my belly and I am WAAAAAAAAY ahead of the curve, measuring a whopping 35 weeks.  Remember, I was just over 29 weeks at this appointment!  Again she told me not worry about measuring big.  She listed these reasons for me to measure ahead:

1. Big baby--According to her, the ultrasound could be up to .5 lb off, but regardless, he's a good size baby for his gestation.
2. The fluid levels are measuring on the high side of normal.  Again, not a concern, but certainly a factor in a larger measurement.
3. Big fibroid--it's still there, measuring at least 5 cm.  Get out your ruler--that's a pretty decent sized thing in there.
4. Not my first baby--everything stretches out easier the second time.
5. Naturally larger physical build--I'm not a petite girl!

So all in all she said they would have been worried if I wasn't measuring "huge" (yep that was her word).  She said that they will continue to watch closely for signs of pre-term labor, a risk factor of having fibroids.  She seems to think that the baby being larger and me measuring bigger could also contribute to me going into labor naturally before my due date.  She said there will me more weight and pressure on the uterus and that can encourage things to start on there own.  Of course they would work to stop any labor that occurs before 37 weeks, but after that, they'd let the baby come.  Even though they seem to be pretty confidant that I will go into labor naturally, maybe even early, I can't seem to imagine it.  I mean, last time I was scheduled for an induction.  I just showed up at the hospital when they told me to, and they did their thing.  I can't imagine how it would be to go into labor at home or at work.  I just can't wrap my head around it!  I guess we will see though!  Hopefully my body does what it is supposed to do!

So everything looks good!  My blood pressure is good, no protein in my urine and AJ seems great.  This is my last week without a doctor's appointment!  Next week I have a regular appointment and then I start weekly appointments with BPPs and NSTs.  They have actually scheduled my appointments through my due date!

So, back to the van.  We managed to get it to a mechanic Thursday afternoon and unfortunately not long after we dropped it off they called me to say that it looked like we had a blown head gasket in the engine.  The mechanic was pretty frank at saying that to repair it would cost at least a "couple thousand" dollars.

Yikes. Not at all what I'd expected to hear.  Not at all what I wanted to hear.  We bought this van two years ago when Tyler outgrew his baby car seat.  We were driving a crossover (a Pontiac Vibe) at the time and discovered that our fancy convertible car seat, generously provided by my employer, was too large to fit rear-facing in the back of the car!  Since Tyler was way too young to be forward facing at the time and even a small car seat would leave us no room for passengers in the back seat, we decided to trade it in for a van.  We would have finished paying the darn thing off later this year, something we were looking forward to. It's been quite some time since we only had one car payment.

Adam and I have some savings, but we don't have THAT much.  After talking about it, we decided to have the van towed to a local dealership where my dad works.  We wanted to have their service center give their opinion and make absolutely sure about what we were dealing with.  Then, if the repairs were going to cost more than the van was worth, we'd see if we could trade it in.  We went to the dealership Thursday afternoon and evening to start filling out paperwork and taking a peek at options, just in case.  Tyler had a good time.  We entered one show room featuring a fancy red sports car and Tyler yelled "I like this!  We'll take it!" Such a boy!

Fast forward 24 hours and the verdict was in.  Blown head gasket and probable cracked engine block.  Translation?  Strong possibility of needing a totally new engine.

So that meant it was back to the dealership to see what we could do.  It was a long night and not without stress (they wanted to give us very little in trade, which freaked me out into thinking we wouldn't be able to get a payment we could afford) but in the end, they made it work.  We drove home with a 2002 Honda Odyssey.  It's in good shape, with decent miles and lots of space inside.  My favorite feature is the automatic doors on both sides--our old van only had them on the passenger side and with another baby coming that second door will come in handy!  I'm bummed that we had to sign on for another 3 years of car payments and we'll be paying a little more per month than we will, but all in all, it worked out and we have two reliable modes of transportation, so that is what counts.

WHEW week 29 was pretty eventful!  Hopefully week 30 will be quiet, I need a break!  So much so that I have decided to take next week off of work!  I had a week of vacation left and there won't be much time left in the year when I return from maternity leave (and work will be insanely busy), I decided to go ahead and take it.  We're having a yard sale this weekend at the house and the State Fair starts this weekend, so hopefully the weather will be decent enough (read: not as hot as Hades) that we can go enjoy a day at the fair.  Adam is going to work most of the week, to save his vacation time for when the baby comes, but mom and Tyler and I will find some fun things to do and maybe I'll make some more progress on the baby's room!

Check out baby AJ's latest photo shoot!
He doesn't like to show his face, so this was the best we could get. The tech said he was snuggling the cord, it's up by his face.


And me, 30 weeks and feeling huge!

Monday, July 23, 2012


29 weeks this week!  My ticker--which I think I have figured out only changes once a month now--proclaims baby boy to be the size of a squash!  That's getting pretty darn big!  It says the baby could be 3 lbs or more by now.  My ticker also tells me I have only 77 days left until my due date.  That seems like a very short amount of time!

I'm still feeling decent.  Evening naps aren't an absolute must anymore, but I find that it's better to limit skipping them to just a couple of times a week or else I pay for it!   My discomfort level is rising fairly rapidly, between AJ invading my lung space and stretching pains along the sides of my belly.  I'm also more uncomfortable at night in strange ways.  My shoulder, ship and even my EAR feel bruised and sore after laying on them for awhile.  It's really bizarre!  You'd think I was sleeping on a wooden board instead of a pillow top mattress.  I'm starting to be pretty encumbered by belly as well.  Putting on  shoes and pants is starting to be more challenging.  I'm (sort of) glad it's warm because sandals are much easier to put on myself than shoes with laces and there is no need for socks EVER.  My stomach appears to be getting a little sensitive again...I'm hoping it's not signalling the full blown third trimester return of morning sickness--I had that with Tyler.  For now, it's sending me back to the Tums container and turning me off of food just a little bit from time to time.  Hopefully it doesn't get worse.

Thursday is my next appointment.  I will be having an ultrasound to check the baby's growth and make sure the fibroid hasn't grown.  My OB is on vacation this week, so I'll have an appointment with the nurse. I'm a little bummed about that, because of course now, two weeks after she told me I'm considered high risk, I have lots of questions to ask.  But I guess they'll keep until my next appointment.

We spent Saturday running errands and then worked on cleaning out the baby's new room.  We have almost everything sorted out, just two more small bookshelves (they aren't very full), the desk (very little storage, mostly just cleaning it off), and a file cabinet (just emptying it, the contents are old and will be put in a box and taken to a shredding place) and then we just have to move stuff OUT.  We're throwing out or putting a lot of the stuff into a yard sale.  We do have a few things that we're trying to figure out where to store.  Namely our board games and paperwork. I think we'll move the file cabinet to the garage, it's fairly small.  The games may have to go on the shelves in my bedroom closet, we just don't have anywhere else to store them.  There will be a few more boxes that may end up out in the shed until we move to a bigger place.  Hopefully we can finish it up soon. I'll feel a lot better when it's cleaned out and we can start to fill it up again!

We also had our anniversary date night on Saturday.  We went to eat at Texas Roadhouse, our favorite and it was delicious!  I ordered my favorite thing on their menu and was happy that I was able to eat it! Then we went to a movie (appropriately "What to Expect When You're Expecting").  It was nice to go out together and just talk, we don't do that very often.

So that's about it!  Update to come after Thursday's doctor's appointment!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Great Eight

Today marks my eighth year of marriage to my wonderful husband!  It's hard to believe that it's been so long, and yet look how far we've come!  It also means that we've been together for a whopping 10 years!  Amazing!  We'll have a little date night on Saturday so I'm looking forward to that!

This week I am 28 weeks pregnant!  A.J. is the size of a head of iceberg lettuce, apparently LOL.  No word from the doctor's office last week means that my glucose tolerance test results came back fine, so YAY for that!  (And BOOYAH to the mean old OB that thought for sure I'd have all kinds of issues because I'm overweight.)  Unfortunately, they also haven't called with my next appointment time.  Since I'm switching to every two weeks now and they want to do an ultrasound at my next appointment, they told me they would set things up and then give me a call. My appointment was last Tuesday, so it's been almost a week. I called the office this morning and they just told me that they are still working on it.  I'm anxious to know when it will be and I'm looking forward to a little glimpse at the baby!  Plus I want to see that pesky little fibroid and make sure it's not growing.

So that's about it for updates!  I thought I'd share a few pictures too, because I haven't recently.  First, I'm gritting my teeth and posting this bump shot--I take them weekly but rarely share them, mostly because I don't like having my picture taken. And then, some pictures of Tyler to distract you :)

28 weeks
Tyler at the carnival a few weeks ago, with Daddy

At our friend's wedding on the Forth--So handsome!
Having his first ice cream cone this weekend, thanks to Mommy's pregnancy craving for mint chocolate chip!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Hello Third Trimester

This week marks the beginning of the third trimester! I can't believe 2/3rds of this pregnancy are over, but I'm not complaining!  This week my little man is the size of a rutabaga.  I'm not super clear of exactly how big that is LOL, but I know he's also probably upwards of 2 lbs now!  He can hear and open his eyes and everything! So multi-talented already!

So yesterday I had my check up and glucose tolerance test.  If I don't get a call by the end of the week I'll know that the glucose test came back fine, which I expect it to.  I'm glad that's over (assuming the test is normal) because I don't enjoy eating a hard boiled egg for breakfast followed by a really sweet orange soda that keeps giving me brain freeze.

I expected the rest of my appointment to be fairly routine--blood pressure check, measure fundal height, and listen to the baby's heartbeat.  My blood pressure was fine and the baby's heartrate came in at a solid 150.  However, I'm still measuring a little big, around 29 weeks as opposed to my 27 weeks.  Most likely, this is due to the stubborn little fibroid that was first mentioned at my 13 weeks first trimester screening.  My OB says that because I'm measuring larger, because I have the fibroid, and because I conceived while taking letrizole (femara--the fertility drug I was using when I got pregnant), they will now consider me high-risk and we'll be doing additional monitoring of the baby.

Basically, this means that I'll have an ultrasound in two weeks to check the size of the fibroid, and then starting at 32 weeks I will be seen weekly.  I will also have bi-weekly non-stress tests and biophysical profiles done.  I had a non-stress test with Tyler, it just involved being hooked up to a fetal monitor that measured his heartbeat and registered movements and any contractions I was having.  The biophysical profile apparently involves a detailed ultrasound that looks at several criteria:  heartrate increases, breathing movements, body movements, muscle tone, and amniotic fluid volume.  The baby will get a score out of 10 in these criteria.  If we get a bad score it could mean there is a problem.  They'll also be watching his growth carefully to make sure that the fibroid isn't restricting weight gain and watching for signs of preterm labor.

My ob emphasized that most of the time these fibroids don't cause any problems at all and that they just want to be extra cautious.  I'm glad that they will be watching things closely, but I can't say I'm not a little surprised.  I anxious to see what the fibroid measures at my next appointment and I guess I can just be happy that I'll get to see my little one on screen again.  I was wondering if I'd have another peek at him before the big day and apparently I'll get a lot more than that!

I am left wondering how this fibroid wasn't detected by my RE's office.  I had monthly ultrasounds with them, as well as an HSG test and an ultrasound when I was 6 weeks pregnant.  My OB even asked if I'd had an HSG and when I told her yes and that it was normal aside from my left tube not filling (which my RE attributed to cramping), she said it could have been that the fibroid is near the tube's opening and that is is actually closing off the tube.  She says it's not always easy to see a fibroid (especially one in the muscle, like mine is), especially in an HSG ultrasound, but she would have thought they would have detected it at some point.  I guess I can't be sure when this little bugger showed up, but it does make me wonder!

I also wonder what kind of concerns my OB has regarding my use of letrizole to conceive. She mentioned it when, but we ended up talking more about the fibroid and I didn't think to ask if she has any specific concerns or has seen anything worrisome in other patient's who have used the drug. I know it's not as widely used in the US as Clomid is (remember I maxed out on Clomid cycles and was using letrizole while we considered other more expensive treatment options), but my RE said it was very safe.  I guess I'll have to ask my OB at my next appointment.  The office is supposed to work on getting me scheduled for the next few appointments and then call me.

After I have the baby, they'll watch to see what the fibroid does and consider what (if anything) to do about it at that point.  Usually if they aren't causing problems, you leave them alone, but they can interfere with fertility, so we may have to address it at some point if we decide to have more children.

So, all in all not exactly what I was expecting, but the bottom line is all is well and baby and I will be watched carefully over the next 12 weeks.

Oh and yes, I believe this little one finally has a name...Alexander Jacob.  We all really like it and it lends itself to lots of possible nicknames: Alex, Xander, AJ...I'm leaning toward AJ personally.

'Til next time!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Goodbye Second Trimester!

26 weeks pregnant!!  Our baby is the size of a head of lettuce!  And his eyes may be opened for the first time!!  Maybe that explains the increase of ROLLING and SPINNING and HEAD-BUTTING I've been feeling!  A lot of girls in my due date buddies thread online have talked about the concerns of preterm delivery and it's got me very thankful that I've made it this far, since at 26 weeks the chances for survival soar to 80% from 50% and below earlier in pregnancy.  The strain of having a preemie would be terrible and scary, but it still lets me sleep a little better knowing that the baby would have a good chance! I've heard and read too many stories about late losses because the baby was too early. I can't believe I'm getting so close to the end of the second trimester!

In other news, it's still hot, which isn't really news as I'm pretty sure it's about this hot EVERYWHERE in the country right now.  We had a bad windstorm on Friday so I'm just thankful we never lost power or anything!  It's Fourth of July week, which means I only have to work three days!  Unfortunately it's a weird Monday, Tuesday, Friday work week, which means Friday will be long and boring, but I'll take it over the alternative!  One of my best friends is getting married on Wednesday, so we'll be celebrating that as well!  I stressed over what to wear, since my maternity wardrobe is pretty limited.  I considered buying a dress, but I ended up settling on a really pretty cream colored lace top and black capris--I hope it's not too casual!  Now I'm on the hunt for bright shoes and accessories to bring in some color.  Yeah, I know I'm running out of time.

I got Tyler to feel the baby moving the other day.  I'm not sure if he was freaked out or just not that interested in the whole thing.

Next week is my next OB appointment complete with glucose tolerance test.  My 8th wedding anniversary is also fast approaching!  It's going to be a busy July!