27 Weeks

Baby and I went and visited the doctor yesterday, for our 27 week checkup.  Man, time is flying by!  The doctor listens to his heart and feels my stomach every visit.  She calls him “happy baby” and says he’s big.  Yesterday, she estimated him being between 2 and 2.5 pounds (which is right on target according to the books) but she says she is concerned he will be a big baby.  (“Big” meaning 8 pounds…. we shall see.)  In case you are curious, I was barely over 6 pounds and Carl was over 10 pounds.  An 8 pound-er for us might be considered average, if it even works that way.
So, what’s new in the past week?
Lots, I tell ya!
Well, I started feeling baby get hiccups finally.  I wasn’t sure that’s what I was feeling but after holding perfectly still and concentrating at the dinner table, I came to the conclusion that yes, it must be hiccups.  At regular intervals my stomach would flutter.  I picture his little face scrunching up at the annoyance of having the hiccups and I think it’s adorable, although I feel a little bad for him.  You know how annoying hiccups can be. 
Last Thursday, I had to go for the glucose screening test.  I was DREADING this test more than anything….. for those of you that don’t know, the glucose screening requires you to fast after midnight, and then go to the doctor and have blood work done.  (And they make you leave a urine sample.  TMI?  Sorry.  There’s a reason I’m telling you though, so bear with me.)  So, the tech draws your blood, then makes you drink a really sugary drink within five minutes.  After the five minutes is up, the timer starts.  Exactly one hour later, the tech draws more blood.  Then, an hour after that, more blood is drawn…and you’re finally free to leave.  
I have no problems with blood work (mom says I’m blessed with my dad’s veins) so why was I dreading this test so much?  The fasting.  The sugar.  The fasting and the sugar.  If I don’t eat soon as I wake up in the morning, I’m extremely nauseous and will throw up (or dry heave).  It’s a pregnancy thing- this isn’t my normal self.  And also, if I eat any sugar, I get nauseous and sometimes throw up.  So I basically avoid sugar (giving in to the occasional ice cream cone- hey, nobody’s perfect) and I keep fruit, granola and protein bars by my bed to eat when I wake up (I switch what I eat per day, I don’t inhale all of that at once).  I was so desperate to avoid this test that I researched the test online, and learned that the doctor is basically checking me for gestational diabetes.  There aren’t any symptoms of gestational diabetes (other than frequent urination, which is also a pregnancy symptom) but there are qualities that can make you more “at risk.”  I had none of those qualities.  I asked my doctor if instead of taking this test, could I please just prick my finger and check the blood using a monitor every single day for the rest of my pregnancy?  She said no.  And so, the test day came.  Much to my chagrin.
So, Thursday (the day of the test), Carl took Austin to school for me so I could sleep until the last minute (and avoid hunger pains if I could sleep through them) so that I could literally roll out of bed and head to the screening (and pray I didn’t throw up).  I arrived and got signed in, had my blood drawn, and then they asked for a urine sample.  I had been fasting and I couldn’t go.  Since I had to leave a sample before drinking the sugar juice, they told me I was allowed to drink water right up until I drank the juice and so I needed to start chugging.  I drank as much ice cold water as I could and poor little baby was feeling the coldness as it went into my belly.  He started kicking and turning around… poor guy.  “Mom!  That’s cold!!”  Sorry buddy.  Finally I was able to drink the juice and start waiting for the hours to pass.  The office was kind enough to give me a bed to lay in, in my own cubicle instead of having to wait in the waiting room.  Thank goodness.  I just laid there for the next two hours and hoped I wouldn’t throw up.  (I did take anti-nausea meds because my doctor gave me the ‘okay.’)  Had I thrown up, I would simply have to re-do the entire test another day.  And I did NOT want that to happen.
Anyway, at yesterday’s appointment, I found out the test results came back normal and I am gestational-diabetes-free.  Thank you to those who prayed I would not only make it through the test without being sick, but for those who prayed the test would come back with good news!
Thursday night, most likely because of the fasting and the test my body went through, I started having several braxton hicks contractions.  These are the painless contractions that the pregnant body goes through to prepare for labor.  They can be brought on by a few things, two of which are dehydration and over exertion.  I did everything they say to do when you have a BH contraction (like drink, change positions, lay on your left side, walk around, have a snack) and the contractions persisted.  I did some research and every website said if you have more than four BH contractions in an hour, to call your caregiver immediately.  I watched the clock and had my fourth one within five minutes so I was getting nervous, but it was midnight and I had no other symptoms so I decided to wait until morning.  I didn’t have that feeling or intuition that anything was wrong, so I went to sleep.  Throughout the night, I had a few more contractions.  My stomach was even feeling hard when it wasn’t contracting and this confused me.  First thing in the morning, I called my doctor.  I spoke to the medical assistant and she told me she would speak with the doctor and call me back.  She never did.  Meanwhile, I had called my mom and one of our friends for advice.  After talking it to death, I realized that the hardness I was feeling (without the contraction) was just the baby!  He’s running out of room and I wasn’t used to feeling a section of my stomach feel more firm than the rest, so I didn’t know that was him I was feeling.  The contractions did not come back but I made sure to talk to my doctor about it yesterday.  She said everything is just fine and as long as I didn’t have any other symptoms (she told me what to look for) then there was no need to worry.  Amen!
Saturday night rolled around and I found myself frantically texting my mom and our friend once again.  After a calm day, baby decided to stretch out and poke his foot into my rib.  He must’ve felt he had more room utilizing that cavity (you know, the one that just holds my lungs, no big deal)… because he stayed there for far too long.  I tried pushing him down, sitting, standing, laying down in multiple positions, “hula hooping” with my hips, and even playing music against my stomach to get him to move.  He was too cozy and fell asleep in that position.  He would not move!  After feeling him tucked in there for about an hour, I was almost in tears from sheer panic that 1) he was stuck, or 2) he broke my rib.  Austin was at a youth devotional, so Carl and I had an impromptu date night that was now in jeopardy.  I was determined to go on and have our meal together, and not let this pain get in my way.  Baby was content, and as long as he wouldn’t move I would just have to make due.  We made our way to the restaurant and I had to take an extra ten minutes or so in the car to try to wiggle this foot loose.  Carl and I waddled (well, Carl walked; I waddled) into the restaurant and I tried my best to disguise my face of someone who is not in pain.  Carl reminded me to smile; I think I was scaring the waitresses.  They were probably wondering if I was in labor and was about to give birth right there in their restaurant.  Here is Carl talking to baby and trying to coax him out of my rib.  Love him!
A few bites in, baby decided to move.  Aaaaaah, what relief!  I could breathe!  I could move!  I was all of the sudden not in pain!  *Happy dance!*  So Carl and I continued our meal and then all of the sudden, BAM.  Foot in my rib, again.  I went from happy and smiles to pain and panic in a matter of 5 seconds as I told Carl “I think I’m going to pass out.”  This time, not only was baby’s foot in my rib, but he was leaning against my diaphragm as well.  (Just another little organ important for little things like, I don’t know….BREATHING….)  Carl assured me I wasn’t going to pass out (and even if I did, my books say that the baby won’t be in any danger… yes, I’ve researched this after a scare a couple months ago).  I know it sounds silly but just little things like Carl taking me by the hand and telling me I won’t pass out actually calms me down.  I get panicky sometimes, thinking that I’ll pass out, or baby is in trouble, and Carl always assures me otherwise.  Even though he isn’t a doctor, he’s always been right so far.  Thanks, honey.  Anyway, baby did end up moving out of my rib shortly after I started feeling panicky, so all was well again.
And while on the subject of Carl, let me just say that he’s been so great to me throughout this pregnancy.  He gives me massages when I request them, brings me food and drinks, is sensitive to my hormonal crying (Picture me sobbing saying “I don’t know why I feel like my best friend just died!”….yes, that happens…), and he rubs my belly and talks to our baby.  Some days he tells me “Hurry up and have him so I can play with him.”  He just warms my heart.  And I love that he enjoys feeling the baby kick.  We will sit together in awe and watch my belly jump around, and he’ll put his hands on him (which often calms the baby down right away) and he gets to feel him kick.  Sometimes the intensity and frequency of the kicks prompt Carl to double check with me that we aren’t having twins.  He’s so sweet and thoughtful… a real catch, that guy.  
On Monday, Austin and I went to the high school and registered him for classes.  9th grade is just around the corner!  Here is a photo I snuck of him filling out a survey while waiting on his guidance counselor.
He mostly got the classes that he wanted, but he was prevented from one elective due to his grades this year.  While the child is bright as can be, he just “doesn’t care” about his grades right now.  We can’t figure it out, but he has outright told us that his grades don’t matter to him.  We are hoping it’s just a phase, and we’ve stressed the importance of good grades so that he can get into college or get a good job.  Right now, he plans on joining the Navy.  Even so, he needs his grades to be up to get accepted there.  Hopefully being prevented from taking a class due to his grades will get him to understand that it isn’t just his parents who are telling him to make better grades… it’s a real issue rather than us just being nit-picky. 
Aside from that, tomorrow we will go enroll Austin in soccer for the fall (like last year).  Not much else is new on the Austin front.
And because I can’t leave our fur-babies out, here are a few pics of them.  I call this one “Will sit for cookie.”
Every day, when Carl gets home, he has to sit down or lay down right away so the girls can jump all over him and love on him.  They get so happy to see him!  Their little tongues are a-flyin’!  Kisses all around!
And I will leave you with this little bit of cute happiness.  Hope you have a great weekend!