Say What?

I am recovering from a plugged duct in my left breast. It is getting better, but my milk production is still lagging on that side. All the books I have, plus my OB and Baby S’s pediatrician, recommend getting lots of rest and pumping every 2-3 hours.

How exactly does one do that? Getting lots of rest and pumping every 2-3 hours seem to be mutually exclusive. Am I missing something?

Anyways, Baby S is one week old. My mom arrives tomorrow night to be with us for a few days and to meet her grandson.




June 29, 2008. The Magnificent Baby S. 6 comments.

In The End

My dad was released from the psychiatric ward on Tuesday (they said he was a “model patient” and “no danger to himself”) and successfully committed suicide last night/early this morning by once again overdosing on prescription medicine. He was found in his hotel room and pronounced dead on the scene today. I am coping by focusing on my beautiful baby boy and the immeasurable joy he has brought into my life. My father knew Baby S was born and never asked about him or even wanted to see a picture. I think, although this sounds cynical, that this was best for all. This drama, played out over the course of my thirty-three year life, is finally over. He got what he wanted in the end.

I am determined not to let this cloud my memories of this early weeks with my son. Even with a plugged duct, which is making breastfeeding difficult, and round-the-clock feedings, I am having the time of my life. He is so beautiful and I intend to fully celebrate the wonder of his life.

June 27, 2008. Other Sucky Things. 22 comments.

Baby S’s Big Debut

Baby S is here!

Born Sunday, June 22nd at 5:30AM.

6lbs. 3oz. and 18.5 inches long (born at 37 weeks)

I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love this little guy. Mr. MC and I are, as the British would say, completely besotted with him and everything he does.

June 26, 2008. He-Beastie's Big Debut, Pregnancy #3. 13 comments.

Eating Crow and Delivering Baby

Okay, so I can’t actually attest to the fact that it was the lavender bath salts, but the warm jacuzzi tub sure is amazing. I should never have doubted its analgesic power. I was able to hold off on the epidural as long as I could stay in the tub, but then the mean, mean nurse made me get out (in her defense, I did have a 101 degree fever) and then I begged for the bloody epidural.

The pregnancy gods were merciful: less than 6 hours of labor from water breaking to he-beastie’s arrival. I only pushed for 20 minutes.

He-beasite, or “Baby S,” was born at 5:30AM on Sunday morning, and tipped the scales at 6lbs. 3oz. He is completely perfect.

June 23, 2008. He-Beastie's Big Debut, Pregnancy #3. 23 comments.

Ewww

I had stronger contractions all last night, but while they were actually moving into the painful realm, they were further apart (10 minutes) than the night before. I actually went to sleep in the nursery as I was afraid my quiet moaning would disturb Mr. MC’s sleep.

This morning as I was getting into the shower, much to my surprise, I noticed that I was spotting brown blood. At first I thought “mucous plug” or “bloody show,” but it really did look like regular old spotting. I called my OB’s office, just to be sure, and the nurse told me that they were just getting ready to call me. Here’s the ewww part: it turns out the bajingo culture they did last Friday was positive for e-coli. Yes, the e-coli that makes everyone sick and is usually found in your colon. Ewwwwwww. I felt like she was telling me that I was a dirty, unhygienic person, but it turns out that it is a pretty common for pregnant women to have asymptomatic e-coli bacterial vagninosis. Still. Ewww.

My midwife thought this is might be what was causing the spotting, so the nurse said if I continued to spot or actually started bleeding, to call back right away. They called in an antibiotic, which I will take for seven days, so hopefully it has time to kill all the nasty ookies in bajingo-ville before he-beastie’s arrival.

I cramped and spotted most of the day, so I went back in this afternoon for another exam. He-beastie is in the “right position,” my cervix is starting to thin, but there is not yet any dilation. Then we got another ultrasound (to rule out a placental abruption) which showed that everything is normal and — here’s a real shocker — my kid likes to move around a lot. I am also to discontinue use of the Lovenox and the baby aspirin one week early (I am 37 weeks tomorrow).

It was a long day and I didn’t get my usual 3-hour nap. Tomorrow, however, my son will be considered full-term. It ain’t over yet, but everything is looking good.

June 18, 2008. He-Beastie's Big Debut, Pregnancy #3. 10 comments.

If I Were A Betting Woman…

… and I am not, BUT if I were, I would pick sooner rather than later for he-beastie’s arrival. I just have a feeling he is coming before his 10 July due date.

I had, for the first time this pregnancy, real “false” labor last night. One minute contractions, six to fourteen minutes apart, for several hours. They did not increase in frequency but they did get more intense and I still have them today. The earlier Braxton-Hicks contraction were just tightening but these are more than tightening and they start in the cervix; they are not yet painful, just uncomfortable. I am not sure how long this goes on before labor — my ever-so-helpful library of pregnancy books says labor will follow in a few hours or a few weeks.  That narrows it right down, right?

For now, however, I am off to teach my class. 10 days left to go but I need to cover as much as possible in case we have an early debut.

June 17, 2008. He-Beastie's Big Debut, Pregnancy #3. 5 comments.

Lavender Bath Salts

When I was admitted on Friday to L&D, I got to preview first-hand the luxurious birthing rooms. I am sure if you are in active labor you probably would not be concerned with all of the aesthetic details, but the rooms really are very nice.

After they put a liter of IV fluid in you, even when you are dehydrated, you really have to pee, so I got to spend a lot of time going back and forth to the bathroom. The bathrooms have beautiful tile work, a large tub/shower filled with jets, a towel rack stocked with plush towels, and the sink was deep with lovely fixtures. They had luxury hand soaps, scented hand lotions, and a tube of lavender bath salts.

Even in the midst of everything, I had to laugh. Lavender bath salts? Really? Obviously they were intended for the tub, which is large enough to labor in but is not a delivery tub. Do they really think that in the midst of a natural labor, because you would not be lying in a warm tub (the “midwives’ epidural”) if you had an epidural, the lavender bath salts are going to contribute to your overall comfort? “Oh, these contractions are just AWFUL! PAINFUL! ARGHHHH!!! The warmth of the tub, however, is so very, very soothing. Wait, they have LAVENDER BATH SALTS? Sprinkle away! Why … I can barely feel the contractions now that I have used the LAVENDER BATH SALTS.”

In other non-toiletry news, my father is still alive. In fact, he has been extubated and is conscious. My brother will call with an update as soon as he talks more to my father’s nurse. That being said, I can not think any more about it because it causes me to either cry, feel nauseous/gag, have Braxton-Hicks contractions/cramping, or raises my blood pressure. None of these things are good for me or he-beastie, and so, per my midwife’s orders, I am only focusing on what I can control and my father, three states away in a who-knows-what kind of mental state, is far outside of my control.

June 16, 2008. Other Sucky Things, Pregnancy #3. 8 comments.

Stupid Selfish Bastard

Thursday night, after my father met with his lawyer regarding the finalities of the divorce and realized that my mother (they live in a “no fault” state) would indeed get 50% of their estate, went back to his hotel room, took all the prescription medicine he had (8 bottles worth) and then sent my mother some of the most vitriolic, nastiest e-mails ever written. He wanted to make sure that a) she never got his life insurance policies (negated in cases of suicide, he thought); b) how much he hated her; c) how she ruined his life by daring to divorce him; d) all the material stuff he wanted my brother and I to get — he wanted her to get nothing except “blamed for this, so she can spend the rest of her life feeling guilty.”

This was 4 weeks to the day before his first grandchild was due. He left no notes, no sentiments, nothing for my brother and I.

My mom, because she is a decent human being, called the paramedics when she read the e-mails instead of just letting him die in his hotel room. The fucker is still alive, but barely, in critical condition in an ICU 3 states away from me. I would not visit him, even if I were allowed to travel. If he dies, we have decided there will be no funeral or memorial. If he lives, my son will never be allowed near him.

**********

Due to stress and emotions, I spent all of Thursday night trying to sleep and failing miserably. I had Braxton-Hicks contractions all night, and woke up in the morning with menstrual-like cramps. I already had an OB appointment, so they did an internal exam (no dilation yet) and then admitted me to L&D for monitoring. The contractions were probably due to dehydration as they slowed down once they gave me two IV bags of fluid. We got to listen to his little heartbeat on the monitor, which was very cool. He did not like either the contraction or the heart rate monitor straps and continually tried to kick them off, which made his heart rate go up, exactly as they wanted it to. I stayed for a few hours, took a nap, and then headed home.

**********

My mom actually went to the hospital yesterday to get updates on my father. He is on a ventilator, his pupils are still pinned (due to the copious amounts of narcotics that he took), his pressure is low but stable, but we do not know if he will live out the week or if he has done any irreparable long-term organ damage.

**********

He-beastie, however, is doing his usual mid-morning gymnastics. I can actually see knees, feet, and hips when he turns himself around or kicks hard enough. Sure, it kind of looks like there is an alien trapped in there, but I love it.

June 14, 2008. Other Sucky Things, Pregnancy #3. 17 comments.

File Under Either: “Stupid Things That People Say” or “Wow, MC Has A Tremendous Amount of Self-Restraint”

I had to return some duplicate gifts to Tarzhay Boutique. The girl who was processing returns looked at my pregnant tummy and exclaimed, WOW, I was told that being pregnant in the summer is like the WORST. THING. EVER!!”

What I wanted to say: “No, actually spending last summer bleeding heavily for several weeks after my second miscarriage was far worse.”

OR: “No, being pregnant in the summer is AWESOME compared to not being pregnant when you really want to be.”

OR: “Being hot, sweaty and pregnant is far, REALLY far, from the worst thing ever. In fact, it pretty much rocks compared to the WORST. THING. EVER. , whatever the heck that is (although I do have a few ideas).

Instead, I said: “Yes, a refund on a gift cards is just fine.”

What I really wanted to add: “You stupid naive idiot.”

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

My father, in an e-mail (the only way we really communicate because he is deaf, and refuses to learn sign language or use the TTD device on the phone) told me yesterday: “I LOVE YOU AND MR. MC AND HE-BEASTIE AND LOOK FORWARD TO HAVING HIM IN OUR FAMILY BUT WHAT YOUR MOTHER HAS DONE TO ME HAS TAKEN MOST OF THE JOY OUT OF THIS.” (Yes, he apparently also yells loudly when he types not because he is deaf, because he hasn’t figured out that all caps = yelling).

What I wanted to reply: What mom has “done to you” is, after 37 years of being unhappily married, to finally leave after living with someone who is bi-polar who refuses to see a therapist or take any medicine for the condition. He still, even after smashing many a house-hold object in fits of rage, spending through a chunk of their retirement during a manic episodes, and spending Christmas and New Years in the psychiatric ward (my mom had him committed when he smashed the second flat-screen TV when she cut off his credit cards) with the official diagnosis of “severely depressed/bi-polar,” doesn’t think there is anything wrong with him.

I also wanted to add: How does your wife leaving you possibly diminish the joy for your first grandchild, unless you are just wallowing in self-pity and a completely selfish asshole.

What I realized: He is just wallowing in self-pity and a completely selfish asshole.

[What I am also fervently wishing: He-beastie did not get the bi-polar gene in my family. Let’s hope that Mr. MC’s genes either dilute it or cancel it out completely. ]

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

But I didn’t say nasty things to either the little Tarzhay girl or my father, because apparently I have a tremendous amount of self-restraint even when I am hot, sweaty, and 8 months pregnant.

Yesterday, I was 8 months. I am today, officially, 9 months pregnant.

June 12, 2008. Miscarriage #2, Other Sucky Things, Pregnancy #3. 10 comments.

Shameless Capitalist Plug

Having recently gone to Babies R Expensive and Tarzhay Boutique whilst 8 months pregnant, I now really, really understand the appeal of on-line shopping. I can lay on my couch with my tennis ball under my pelvis (i am telling you, it really does work for sciatic pain but you have to put it directly under the most tender spot and then lay there for a while) and order stuff he-beastie will need without pain shooting down my left leg.

Artsweet told me about a great site: Diapers.com

They sell diapers, of course (including cloth diaper supplies and Seventh Generation), but lots of other stuff (baby food, toiletries, toys, etc…) as well. I bought a bunch of Mustela products was amazed how quick and easy it was. (Mustela is my baby product vice; the kid can ride around in a rather unattractive car seat, but there is something about smelling like French baby that brings a huge smile to my face! The stuff is also really gentle and I am anticipating, given our family histories, that this kid is going to have sensitive skin.)

So, if you need baby stuff, check them out!

If you use my code (ELFX3625), you get $5 off your first order! You also get free shipping if you spend more than $49, so if you order in bulk, it is actually cheaper than going to the mega stores.

Now, back to my regularly scheduled tennis ball session.

June 9, 2008. Other Links, Pregnancy #3. 3 comments.

The Countdown Has Begun

I am 35 weeks pregnant.

He-beastie, Mr. MC and I were “showered” with gifts last weekend. My friends threw a fantastic, non-traditional party (kids, co-ed, no weird games) and we had a great time. All these people were there to celebrate he-beastie’s impending arrival, which was weird, because they all just assumed everything is going to be fine!? Could everything really be just fine?

The nursery is pretty much done. We have new window blinds up, the IKEA furniture is put together and in place, and his little clothes and blankets are all washed (in the no perfume/no dye detergent) and put away in his new dresser. Most everything else we need is in the room, if not yet completely set up or totally organized; however, the big projects are all done.

We bought the car seat and the car seat stroller frame. We were going to buy a travel system, but the one we wanted was discontinued. The rest of the travel systems had strollers that were SO very heavy, so we decided on just the car seat bucket and the stroller frame. We will then buy another stroller when he is older and able to sit up on his own.

We have a breastfeeding class this Tuesday, and then we are “officially” (well, as “official” as you can ever get, I suppose) ready for he-beastie’s arrival. He understands, though, that mommy needs to teach until the 27th, so he is not going to come before then.

Today was my last Friday without an OB appointment. From next week on, I will be in their office every week to meet with my midwife. Her concerns for labor: managing my anxiety (honestly, I don’t feel all that anxious about labor, but I do have bad anxiety so she may have something) and my nausea. I guess when you have hyperemesis the hormones released in labor cause many women to throw-up the whole time. Doesn’t that sound like fun!? Labor AND a reprise of pukeapalooza!

June 6, 2008. Pregnancy #3. 6 comments.