Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Frances Claire

Only 5% of babies are born on their due date. You can add #2 to the list! She was born on June 28, 2010 at 4:11 p.m. She was 8lb. 11oz. and has a full head of beautiful dark hair. I will fill you in on all the details soon, but to summarize I managed to deliver her naturally, with no drugs! It was the most amazingly physically and mentally tough thing I have ever done and will probably ever do. I am still in awe of the whole thing today! Here's a little photo of our darling Francie snoozing on my lap while we wait for mrp to bring peanut to meet his little sister. Oh what a happy day!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Origami

I've learned a lot about life from running and now I've learned a lot about life from pregnancy. I always thought my sheer will and determination were my best qualities. I love being a type-A. But in running and in pregnancy, this characteristic isn't always helpful.

It's easy to always want to steamroll your way to achieving a goal. It's a lot harder to know when to fold 'em, as Kenny would say. No matter how hard I work or how much I want something I can't always affect the outcome. Sometimes in a race the body, the conditions, the course, the weather, etc don't cooperate and leave achieving a time goal out of my control. In pregnancy, sometimes even while experiencing contractions for two days in a row the body really isn't ready to go into full-blown labor even if I employ every labor stimulating activity known to mankind and walk miles and bounce on the exercise ball and WILL it to happen. And there comes a point in both a race and pregnancy where we need to acknowledge some things are just out of our hands and ... let go.

So, although it was really really hard I let go and let my contractions fade away and realized that yes, I was in "false" labor and that it's best for everyone to rest, relax and enjoy these extra days. Let go of feeling the need to stay mobil to get labor restarted. Let go of feeling like I MUST have this baby tonight! Let go of feeling like it's all up to me if I just try a little harder. Let of of the feeling that it's GOOD to have the baby sooner and BAD to have the baby later. Let go of it all and just sink into what is. Embrace the here and now. Yadda yadda yadda, new-age psychobabble bla bla bla. But really. Just let go. It's time to fold 'em.

And now I am sitting here this morning. The sun is streaming in the window. I can hear mrp and peanut reading books in the other room. I feel rested from my 8 hours of sleep and excited to share the day with my family.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Woman on the Verge





Another Labor Break

I had contractions steadily all day yesterday and by about 8:00 they started picking up intensity. I had to employ my pain management tricks to get through them. But I am good with that and by 11:30 or so felt tired and at the urging of mrp tried to sleep. I thought for sure I wouldn't be able to sleep through the contractions since they were so rough and they are especially rough when I can't move around. I laid down anyway, determined to at least try to rest. I worked on my relaxation before a contraction came on and when it did I really tried to let go of it. Just let it happen and sink into it. It's a weird thing to do, at least for me. I mentally moved into the pain instead away from it and wouldn't you know it before I had three contractions I was asleep!

I woke up to several contractions, but I also woke up knowing they had slowed way down with the sleep and remaining motionless and vertical for so long. I had to again make the tough call to go with rest rather than labor progress, knowing that I still have a long way to go. I managed to sleep until 5 and I'm now sitting on the yoga ball trying to get #2 engaged again and ready to rock this out today. Oh please be today! Will update again today as I can.

Update: I've been up for 3 hours and only had a couple of contractions. Midwife advised to take magnesium citrate, a laxative. Went to CVS and the stuff comes in a bottle. It's like laxative soda and is disgusting. Cheers!

Update #2: Well, that didn't seem to work. I've had contractions, but nothing I'd call progress. I feel like I've been running a marathon with no mile markers and thought I was around the halfway point only to discover I'm at mile 2. It's frustrating, but I figure with all this trying and still nothing's happening it's just not time yet. Prelabor is frustrating, that's all there is to it! So, yeah back to assuming no #2 until her due date on Monday.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Labor Break

I am in the middle of a labor break. I don't know what it is about my body, but it is very temperamental when it comes to labor. I had nice steady and progressive contractions from 1:00 p.m. until midnight last night. At the suggestion of my doula, I drank a small glass of wine at 11:30 to see if it would help me get some sleep. I drank it and it made me sleepy. I laid down and started dozing in between contractions and before I knew it, it was 2:00 a.m. I had fallen asleep and when I woke up the contractions had stopped. UGH.

I could have tried to get them going again, but it seemed stupid to do that at 2:00 a.m. so I sucked it up and went to bed feeling somewhat defeated. When I woke up at 5:00 and they still weren't back I broke down and cried, but after speaking to my doula about it and making a plan I feel better. Apparently, this is weird, but not totally crazy weird and nothing to worry about. Just annoying really. I need to do my best not to wear myself out, so I am just going to go about my day and when they come back and labor starts again then labor starts again. No rush.

In the meantime, mrp is working from home and we're having a nice morning with peanut. I'm planning to meet my good buddy BH who's studying to be an OB nurse for a walk and I am excited about that. AND I have faith that I will actually make it through labor and onto the other side with a happy healthy #2 very very soon!

Update: Contractions started back up spontaneously a little before 7:00 a.m. I'm about right where I left off last night. Also discovered a lovely fistful of bloody show--yum! Sorry for the tmi, but it's about that time in any mommy blog to overshare :) This could be a road to nowhere too, but I am holding out hope #2 will be here before the weekend.

Update #2: Just got back from a walk and lunch with BH. Had a nice time and it got my mind off of everything. Contractions still coming although don't really feel like they're getting closer, but they do feel stronger. Going to go lay down and try to rest and we'll see what the rest of the day has in store!

Update #3: Had a nice day. Played with mrp and peanut down by the river and threw rocks. Hung out with my mom for a little while. Went to the library and then had burritos with my boys. Peanut is down for the night now. I would say everything's been holding steady since my last update. The intensity of the contractions has pretty much stayed the same most of the day and they aren't getting closer together so I'm pretty much assuming I'm still in prelabor and not even officially in labor yet. Mrp's staying home tomorrow too and basically I'm hoping to have this baby by her due date (Monday) and not wear myself out in the meantime. Will update if there's anything interesting to say!

Update #4: Contractions picking up in intensity. Mom's here just in case. Trying to rest. Trying ...

Monday, June 21, 2010

Why is that Lady Hoarding BOB Strollers?

When I was about 6 weeks pregnant, I found a great deal on a used BOB double jogging stroller. I snatched that baby up and thought I was all set to continue on running with two kids in tow post delivery.

Fast forward to Friday. I was sitting on my garage step awkwardly putting my shoes on when I happened to start reading the unopened BOB infant car seat adapter box next to me. I saw a little chart that spelled out the BOB strollers that the car seat adapter would work with and I realized the BOB duallie I bought on Craigslist was too old. D-oh!

I dialed up ol' BOB customer service on the phone and asked the customer service dude if they had an car seat adapter that might fit my older model duallie. He regretfully said they didn't and I hung up and in my 39 week pregnant hormonal best started to cry. SHIT! That thing is my freedom!

Now I have to figure out plan B just days (hours? minutes? seconds? I really am an optimist!) before #2's arrival. I'm definitely going to sell the used blue BOB Duallie Sport Utility Stroller (It's in great shape if you know anyone in the market for one, just let me know!) and perhaps sell the single (still undecided about that). In the meantime I'll be awaiting the delivery of a shiny new yellow double Ironman. I LOVE my single Ironman, so I can't say this is a totally bad situation. I am so used to running with the lightweight Ironman and it's sleek fast fixed wheel tires that I find a lot of comfort in the idea I get to keep on using one for years to come! Plus, obnoxious yellow's more my color.

Anyway, just another case of pregnancy brain over here. I'll spare you the story of how I forgot to pay the water bill for 3 months and finally did only to pay the hospital (which I haven't owed money to in years and just happens to be one payee up on the payee list in my on-line banking) instead of the water company and how it will take 2 months for them to return the money. UGH.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day (for once)

Looks like I didn't need to sign mrp's Father's Day card from #2, afterall. Still pregnant. I did have contractions all last night, though so I know I'm going into labor very soon. It's just frustrating to have so many false starts. It wears me down. I was hoping this time would be a little better than last time, as far as all this false labor stuff. Apparently not. That likely means this baby is also sunny-side up so I'm working on doing my pelvic rocks to try to get her to flip over and get on with the show!

In the meantime, I am trying hard not to dwell on it. It's hard not to get excited every time my contractions start up. All I can do is stay busy. I've been walking every day. I've walked over 20 miles this week already. It feels good and makes me feel somewhat normal. Even though I was still having contractions this morning I went with mrp to peanut's gym class and ran around and participated. It felt funny jumping and running around, but it was fun and kept my mind off of the whole am-I-or-am-I-not-going-into-labor thing.

In the end, it doesn't matter when she comes. I still feel relatively good even with contractions from time to time and not being able to run. I otherwise feel so much better than last time. I still have a lot of energy and don't feel quite as gargantuan and gangly and out-of-shape. I can still play with peanut and do all of that fun stuff so whatever. It really is all the false-labor teasing that's driving me nuts about it! Otherwise, I really would be ok about it.

In any event, I hope you all have a lovely Father's Day. This is the first Father's Day I've celebrated in YEARS. I couldn't even get into last year with it being mrp's first and all. It was just too sad for me without a dad and all. I thought I might have more trouble this year since my grandfather died, but I haven't at all. I am happy about celebrating what a wonderful dad mrp is and even happy reflecting on my own dad and grandfather. Maybe it's because mrp's about to be a dad again that makes it that much happier an occasion this year, but whatever it is, it's nice. And I'm happy. Just still pregnant :)

Friday, June 18, 2010

Mother of One

Still nothing going on. I'm trying not to get frustrated. It's still early with 10 days until my due date. I guess I was hoping I'd go a little earlier than the week early I went last time. Oh well. I might go later and I need to start accepting that.

I feel pretty yucky--tired, nauseous, crampy. I've been feeling like that on and off for about a week or so now. Today I have the extra feeling of not wanting to socialize at all. I just want to stay busy with peanut and get him down for a good nap and get some things done around here--mainly putting #2's clothes away and getting out all the baby equipment and cleaning it up. First though, peanut and I are going to go for a walk and then I'm going to take him to the pool while I can. It's a perfect day for a pool visit and I just know he'll love it! Should be fun!

Lately on Fridays I've been going down to the CVNP to run and lunch with my awesome running mom buddies, but it takes a lot out of me and it's smack dab in the middle of the day when peanut takes his nap and I don't have the luxury right now of wearing myself out with no chance to recharge. Plus, the whole anti-social feeling thing. Plus, I can't really run anymore with #2 so low and all the crampiness I'm experiencing. So, eh. Forget it. To the local park and pool we shall go! Plus, peanut and I probably need some nice time to ourselves before our world is turned upside down!

Anyway, so I'm still pregnant. Trying to accept that things will happen when they will happen and enjoy my time as a parent of one for now. Will keep you posted of course!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Come on #2!

These last few days of pregnancy are tough. According to the midwife, I can go into labor any day now. That means nothing. As of Monday I was 3 cm dilated, 60% effaced and the baby was -2 station (which is very low--lower than peanut was when I started pushing last time!) But that means nothing. I had contractions all night on Tuesday - Wednesday that petered out by the morning and that also means nothing. Basically, all these things tell me is that I'm going to go into labor soon. But also the fact that my due date is in 11 days says the same thing. I can hang out like this for 2-3 weeks and that would be normal. Woo.

I am so ready to get on with it. Come on #2!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Bouncing Back

I'm sure it's been said before, and maybe even by me, but these last weeks of pregnancy are so much like a taper. Well, except for the part about not knowing the day of the event--that part drives me batty! I've been resting more, making sure to eat well and hydrate and stay calm and relaxed. Last time I was studying books about birth, but this time I am letting go. Mrp got a book about how to help your partner through labor at the library and he's studying. I'm seriously relaxing and letting go. I haven't even packed my hospital bag yet! That doesn't mean I don't have a bit of the taper crazies. I spend a lot of time resting or walking and thinking, of course. I wouldn't be me if I wasn't thinking.

Occasionally, I spend this thinking time reflecting on my last marathon(s). I was reading my logs from last year and it is totally obvious how stressed out I was right around the time of the Akron Marathon--my first and hopefully only dnf. So much was going on in my life all at the same time and I'm sure it seriously affected my running. Of course, as with most things, a bad race is usually not caused by one thing (I still maintain my taper sucked). But, life stress was abundant at the time and it has zinged me often in the past.

I managed to bounce back from the dnf and win the Towpath Marathon a couple of weeks later (it's small). My time was definitely not even close to what I have the potential to run, but we'll chalk that one up to pregnancy (it was a mystery to me why I ran so relatively slow until about a week later and then it suddenly made sense)! It was actually a good race experience--I had fun and did my best that day. No matter what, you really can't ask for more.

Besides reflecting on past marathons, of course I'm reflecting on my past birth experience. It was um, well, long. I was thinking about the other day and I was in labor for 49 hours! 49 hours! Sure, I'm nervous I'll have another crazy long back labor, but I am hopeful that I'll have a more positive experience this time around. I am going to try to have a natural childbirth again. My midwive's have promised it shouldn't be nearly as long this time, but have cautioned me that I will likely have back labor again. So, I've been doing my all-fours exercises as prescribed in hopes of maybe getting my stubborn baby to get into the proper position. But I also think that I was so amped up and excited last time that I ran out of steam. If I would have rested more and relaxed perhaps my labor wouldn't have stalled. Even if there was nothing I could have done, I believe relaxing and letting go--and I mean submitting to the birth process--will help me this time. I have high hopes that like my post-dnf marathon that this birth will be fun (well, let's say a positive experience!) and that I do my best that day (and we're going to optimistically stick with singular day here!). Because just like a marathon, I really can't ask for more. Other than a healthy happy #2, of course!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Prebaby Procrastinating

Ugh! How has it been so long since I last posted? I have been struggling mightily with staying motivated to do anything other than lay around or spend time outside with peanut. I have no motivation to do my teeny-tiny contracting job or any of the other myriad tasks I have on my list that have nothing to do with prepping for labor. It's bugging me because I know once #2 comes I will be even less motivated to get stuff done, at least for a few weeks. Oh well.

Surprisingly I'm still running. I logged about 4 miles total today with most of it running. There were some walking breaks but not really all that many compared to the previous few times out there. I have been doing much more walking generally. Running just doesn't feel good some days. I get very crampy and sometimes struggle with round ligament pain among other exciting sensations. So I try to run and some days it works out and some days it doesn't. Such is the life of a pregnant woman in week 38!

I am feeling so ready to have this baby. I have lots to do, as I said above, but otherwise I am so ready to get on with it. I want to experience labor, meet this little lady and move on! At the same time I am working hard to enjoy these last days with just peanut and mrp. They've been great days for the most part. Peanut is joy personified. He makes me so unbelievably happy--happier than I ever thought possible and parenting with mrp is just so fun. Parenting has added a wonderful new dimension to our partnership. Mrp has never been a very emotional, expressive or affectionate person--at least these things do not come easy to him--so it gives me such joy to see mrp and peanut palling around and cuddling and to watch mrp truly nurture his son (who ADORES daddy! Whoa does that kid love his dad!) Those things come very easy to me, so while mrp works hard to get his nurturer on, I'm working hard to do all that boring administrative crap that needs to get done to support our family. (Although I need to work harder as I'm still typing this post!)

Yeah, surprisingly after months of feeling angsty this pregnancy (over weight gain, feeling like crap and out of my running groove) the last couple of months have really been some of the best weeks of my life. I mastering the art of housekeeping, confronting my money management demons and savoring the splendor of these most simple things. Even running provides me so much joy, whether it's supporting my fast friends, my sister or my new mom friends getting back into shape post-baby or logging 3 miles myself waddling behind the BOB.

Now I just need to find joy in the boring crap I need to get done before #2 arrives!

Saturday, June 05, 2010

Lucky Lady

Life is good! Peanut slept 13 hours last night and then took a 2 hour nap this afternoon. Woohoo! This is a schedule I can get down with. The previous four days of one nap only got me a 45 minute nap and I was starting to freak out. Peanut started sleeping in an extra hour since we dropped the a.m. nap, but that was not enough to mitigate the shortening of the afternoon nap. I don't have the stamina right now to go 11 uninterrupted hours with a toddler and I'm not sure that's going to change any time soon. I was freaking about how the heck I was going to take care of said toddler and his newborn sister all by myself with no real nap on his part. I was considering looking for a job and a good daycare! Just kidding of course, but it was seriously scary.

On the running front, I'm still running. I ran 3.5 with JenC and BS on Wednesday and then 4 miles yesterday with JenC and Evie. I LOOOOOOOOOVE having all these new mom friends. It really has been awesome to have buddies to talk babies and pregnancy and running and all kinds of other stuff. I think I'd be a lunatic without them--at least more of a lunatic :) Besides these awesome ladies, I have several other non-running friends who are pregnant or just had babies and have little boys around peanut's age. I've been trying to have at least a play date a week alongside my running dates, so we've been busy and peanut's been having some fun times. These last few weeks of pregnancy can just drag, so it helps me to stay busy and connected.

Speaking of these last weeks, unfortunately all that prelabor stuff I was talking about a while back has pretty much gone and I feel fine--like I'll be pregnant for another month. I'm hoping I have #2 at 39 weeks like with peanut, but I'm starting to believe it might not happen. Oh well. I feel good. I am soooo ready to get on with it and meet this girl, but life is good this way too. I am enjoying my time with just peanut and mrp and dates with friends so I'll be happy if she's early, on time, or *gasp* even late.

Lastly, this is totally on a different subject, but I must discuss this awesomeness! My dear friend E has just been tearing it up out there on the roads, racing 37:36 for 10k last month and then averaged 6:01 pace over a 5.25 hilly course last weekend. THE elite women's team in the state asked her to be a part of their Columbus 10k team tomorrow. I am so excited for her! Can't wait to hear how it goes. So cheer her on while you're on your own run, at church or eating pancakes or whatever it is you're doing tomorrow morning. Go E!!!

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

No Sleep (well, not enough) for the Weary

Ugh. Pregnancy insomnia. Not fun. #2 is bouncing off the walls in there and it's hot and mrp snores a tiny bit and these are really just excuses because I doubt I could sleep anyway. I need to. I am exhausted.

Peanut did great on our one nap schedule except (and this is a HUGE except) he only slept 45 minutes for his one nap for the second day in a row. I am not handling that well. I have work I need to get done and naps I need to take these days. By this afternoon I was a mess.

I had my prenatal appointment in the late afternoon, but since peanut was up and we had time to kill I thought I'd go sign up for his swimming lessons. We saw his buddy from swim class earlier in the day at the park and her mom said she signed up that morning for just the very session that would work perfectly for us. I arrived at the rec office only to discover that that session and any other session we could possibly swing this summer were full.

I walked out with peanut and immediately started sobbing. I cried all the way to the car. And then I cried some more. And then I called mrp and cried. And then I kind of got it together and drove to my prenatal appointment. I was so blah there that I forgot every question I had and it was the most uneventful appointment ever. No internal (which I am kind of glad about since I've been having a lot of braxton hicks again and I was worried an internal would p.o. the ol' uterus again). All she did was measure me, get #2's heart rate and freak me out for the millionth time that I might have another posterior baby (sunny-side up--basically the wrong position and it causes back labor among other not fun stuff). Great.

But the morning was really good. Peanut slept in until a little after 7:30 and played in his crib until 8:00. I brought him down and we had a nice morning together and then hit the park for a run with JenC and BS and our BOBs. I wasn't sure what to expect from the run, but I surprisingly felt the best I have in about a week and a half. We ran 3.5 and I felt like I could have kept on going. Peanut didn't even conk in the stroller, which I was worried about. After then run we had a little lunch and then got his bucket swing on before heading home to play and read stories until at least 12:30. Right on cue at 12:30 after reading "Duck in the Truck" for the 3rd time in a row (great book by the way!) peanut found his blankie and rubbed his eyes and walked over to the gated stairs. I took him up to his room and everything went according to plan until 45 minutes later when he woke me from my nap (after maybe 5 minutes of sleeping) with his loud crying. I gave him some time to reconsider, but after 10 minutes of wailing I went up and brought him in bed with me for some cuddles. He won't sleep in my bed, but at least it gives me an opportunity to rest a tiny bit more. But it's not enough!

I'm hoping that within a few days he'll adjust to our one nap schedule. In the meantime, I hope I survive!

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

My Little Pillow Fluffer

So this is day #3 of no a.m. nap. The past three days peanut wanted to go up for his nap at 9:00 a.m. but all three days he's refused to sleep and ended up playing up there for 30-45 minutes before crying to come back down. Maybe this time he'll actually make the switch. I am going to try to not put him down until at least 12:30 tomorrow. Hopefully, he'll nap longer than the 45 minutes he napped in the afternoon today!

The only other thing this weird sleep thing could be is maybe his naps are screwed up because he's really going through a hardcore verbal developmental stage. He's been saying a new word almost every day the last week or so. He says "wow" and "whoa" and "moo" and "all done, momma" and "all done, dadda" and "Waa waa waa" (that's what a baby says, you know :) He's not just saying the words he's using the words and phrases appropriately. It's crazy. He went from saying about 5 words to about 15 words and a few phrases within a couple of weeks!

Although this might be contributing to my nap issues, I'm going to try to make the one-nap switch since he's well within the age range for that. I'm a bit wary of so fundamentally changing up our schedule so close to the arrival of #2, but it seems like this is where we need to go. Hopefully, we'll have 3 weeks or so to adjust to the new schedule before #2's big day!

In other news, I am working on two aspects of myself right now. I've mentioned the money issue--I am working to be less emotional and more straight-forward about how I deal with money. The other big thing I'm working on is becoming better about cleaning. I know this is kind of pathetic, but I really struggle with the discipline required by housekeeping. I have never been much for housework and think I survived pre-peanut just because I was never home between work and running. Now I'm home all the time with a toddler no less, so the house has really suffered.

Over the last month or so I've been determined to ride the wave of the nesting instincts that come with the last weeks of pregnancy and I haven't disappointed myself! I've managed to keep my kitchen clean and I cleaned the disaster that was our bedroom (e.g. I had piles of work clothes on the floor that had not been touched since I quit). Our bedroom is so neat and organized and I LOVE it! Over the last year of utter chaos in this messy house I think I have really come to appreciate housekeeping and its impact on happiness. I've even been making the bed. Today was day 5 in a row of making the bed and it is just so heavenly to have a nice made bed to sit on with peanut and cuddle and play.

Another thing I've realized is what a bad example my slobbiness is to my children. I don't want peanut and #2 to be completely blind to mess like I was and I want them to have a strong sense of self-discipline and a strong work ethic. To that end, I try to include peanut in the housekeeping activities. If I'm wiping something I give peanut a paper towel to "help." Each morning when I make the bed, peanut fluffs the pillows. He hits each one as I place it on the floor and after he hits the last one he jumps on the pile. It is so adorable! I need to get a photo tomorrow!

Anyway, so that's what I've been up to in between my piddly little 3-3.5 mile runs. I plan to run tomorrow and Friday for sure. We'll see how that goes. I'm 36.5 weeks, so at least I've made it 2.5 weeks longer than last pregnancy!