Wednesday, June 30, 2010

He's here...

7 lbs 15 ozs of cute and slightly furry. Five hours of labor from start to finish, and he was born in the bathtub at home. More details when I have 2 hands for typing.

Ow, it hurts...

And no, I'm not in labour.

In addition to the crazy menstrual-like crampiness, I've now got crazy pressure going on "down there"... (TMI coming up) I keep going to the bathroom, sitting there, and then realizing after ten minutes that I already pooped plenty today, this is just pressure. And it is. And it's killing me. Ow.

So... do I haul out "ye olde breast pumpe" and see if I can stir up some contractions that way? I'd feel so... hypocritical. Up until a couple of weeks ago, my attitude was, "the baby will be born when it's ready, and it's just wrong to try to force a natural process." Now that I'm here, at 40 weeks exactly, and not just uncomfortable but in actual pain, I'm feeling almost ready to give in to the selfish impulse to "self-induce".

That's all... just a whine. Have a great day, everyone.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Still pregnant.

I know, I know. Up until a few weeks ago, "still pregnant" would be a marvellous, wonderful thing to celebrate. At this point, though, I'm just ready to be done. Not because I'm tired of being so big, not because I'm impatient to meet this baby (although I am), but because I've been having contractions on and off for the past two weeks, and it's bloody annoying. Look, either contract and get the baby out, or don't, and let me function normally. Oh, and the feeling that my pubic bone is separating in the most painful manner possible isn't helping, either.

Whine over.

Today I've got that really bad achy feeling like the worst menstrual pain ever. Does this mean labour is imminent? I fear the answer is "no"... but it would be a great day for a "yes"!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

whiskey tango foxtrot?

I was able to get to the bottom of this bloodwork issue today, thanks to the original doctor's incompetence (or should I say, "complete lack of common sense"?).

My psychiatrist faxed the bloodwork results to my midwives. I'm still not sure why, except that since she kept saying "I want you to have a copy to show your midwife" I assumed it was something relevant to my prenatal care, and therefore told her to fax it to them when she suggested I drive downtown, pay for parking, and pick up the stupid thing myself.

So... the "deficiencies"? My vitamin B12 is at a level that the lab guidelines classify as "possibly indicating deficiency", and my TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) is 3.25, right in the middle of the lab's "normal" range of 0.5-5.0. The doctor's note on the front, addressed to my midwives, states that "patient should be started immediately on intramuscular B12 injections, and should be referred to Dr. Y___ for endocrinology follow-up."

Now, before any of you Google MDs start typing out your responses, let me say that I understand that both the B12 guidelines and the TSH range have been recently (or not-so-recently) criticized as being outdated and inaccurate, and doctors are advocating revamping and tightening the guidelines. The current guidelines, it seems, originally included a number of people who had what were called "subclinical" cases of deficiency or whatever.

HOWEVER... neither of these bloodwork results is alarming enough to warrant calling a patient and insisting that she needs to come in the next day to discuss, all said in a panicky tone of voice. And to my mind, neither of these things needs to be addressed right this second, when I'm 39 weeks pregnant and I'm likely to be facing wildly fluctuating hormone levels in the next little while. And finally, neither of these things is something that my midwives can or should really address. They can't make the direct referral to edocrinology, and they don't have the expertise in thyroid stuff to know whether they should. IM B12 injections are also not within their scope of practice, I think. So why on earth did my psychiatrist a) freak me out with her whole "I need to see you tomorrow" drama, and b) suggest/insist on involving my midwives?

I feel like the answer is to accept that my psychiatrist is generally high-strung and anxious, and either ask my family doc for a new psychiatric referral or brace myself for more lapses in common sense.

What would you do? And would you bitch out the psychiatrist, if you were me?

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Still around, still round.

No, I haven't had the baby yet. I'm having another evening of many contractions, all painless.

Today at the midwife, we discovered that Cletus the Fetus's head is engaged in my pelvis, which I probably should have deduced from the searing pain in my pubic bone every time I shift positions. Seriously, it feels like that bone is going to split down the middle. In other news, I'm strep B negative... again. Which is a good thing, because nobody thinks my labour would be long enough for me to have the recommended course of antibiotics anyhow. Meh, another bullet dodged.

My psychiatrist called today. Last time I was in, on Monday, she insisted that we run another set of bloodwork - thyroid, Vitamin D, etc - because there were a few slightly abnormal numbers last time. Well, she called me today and left a message insisting that she needs to see me tomorrow to briefly discuss the results. Then she "reassured" me that there's nothing really terrible, "just a few deficiencies". A few? A FEW? So important that she needs to see me tomorrow? So now I'm stuck between worrying and thinking that she's just a worrywart who wants to make sure that my Midwives know that I'm iron-deficient or something.

Right this second, I'm feeling like it's something semi-serious. WTF is wrong with me?

UPDATE: I called her this morning to confirm what time she wanted me to come in. She said, "I don't have time for this today, I have to leave by 2:00 and I have back-to-back patients until then." !!!!! I stifled the urge to say, "Well, you were the one who called me in a panic and HAD to see me today." She asked me whether I could just come in and pick up a copy of the results. I told her she should just fax them to my midwife, if she thought they were relevant. So now I don't really know what to think these results are all about... but how important can they be, if hearing about it is subject to my doctor's whims?

Monday, June 14, 2010


Yes, exactly. Basically painless contractions. Every fifteen minutes.

I know this can go on for a long, long time without me being in active labour. And by a long, long time I mean weeks... but just in case, I'm going to go take a nap.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Musings on a front garden.

Well, it's something to think about. Enough people have disagreed with my and Mr. December's perception of the front-yard issue that we're rethinking our attitude. We're going to compromise, for now, on mowing our lawn more often.

Interestingly, the municipal by-law insists that front yards be kept free of weeds. This in the same city where it is now illegal to spray pesticides and herbicides. And besides, who determines what a weed is? The volunteer foxgloves that sprout between our foundation and our driveway? Chicory flowers (which I love)? Or just the usual old dandelions?

It can all be very confusing when you're not a perfectionist.

I think I can appreciate where my neighbour is coming from, in terms of the veggies. In her day, growing a vegetable garden meant that there was a shortage of produce - either because of war, or simply because you were too poor to buy your fruits and veggies at a store. For her, I suspect that living in a neighbourhood where people only grow ornamental plants is proof of a certain level of affluence.

In our generation, at least among the people we hang out with, growing vegetables is a hobby. A time-consuming, money-consuming hobby, that doesn't necessarily even pay for itself. Also, it's an environmental statement, having something to do with eating locally or organically. All of the above are really luxuries afforded to people with a certain level of affluence, and so we make absolutely no associations between a vegetable garden and poverty. Friends come over, see our garden, and say "Wow, cool! I had no idea potato flowers were purple!". It's seen as a really neat feature.

So all this to say that from now on we'll mow our lawn more regularly and divide the perrenials when they get too bushy and overgrown... but the vegetables stay, and so does the pear tree.

Now, if only I could get the city to come and uproot the dead sapling that's been in our front yard for the past TWO YEARS...

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

hormonal? Me?

Yes, folks, we've reached that point in the pregnancy. Everything makes me emotional.

Today was Kali's last day of preschool. Her teacher gave each child a personalized slideshow of pictures taken throughout the year. As we watched it, I cried.

I went across the street to ask the elderly neighbour with the broken arm how she was doing. I made a remark about how excited we are about our garden and our blooming veggies, and she started in on how vegetables don't belong in the front yard, how messy and disorganized our yard is, and how her sons cry when they see it because they miss the fastidious woman who lived here years ago. I managed to conceal my rage until I had again wished her well, and then I went back home and fumed. Maybe a single pensioner has nothing better to do than to search her lawn for weeds every. single. day. If we mow our lawn every other week, that's pretty good for us.

So yeah, two very emotional reactions to things that would normally roll off my back. I must be hormonal or something.

Saturday, June 05, 2010


Here we are, 36.5 weeks. For those counting along at home, that means I'm 4 days away from being considered "full term".

Thanks to all who responded to my last post. We ended up not going. To clarify, this was an informal gathering, not the actual engagement party. Anyhow, I was having an off day where sitting up was making me feel all kinds of dizzy and weird (darn baby mushing my internal organs around), so driving half an hour was really not in the cards anyway.

Many things are going really well around here:

The Garden
My potatoes are flowering, and so are the peas. We have a crop of carrots that looks like it'll be ready by the end of the month, and have sown a whole bunch more. The cucumbers have sprouted. The tomato seeds are in the ground. Sunflowers are slowly catching up to the squirrels, height-wise, and our new fruit tree and raspberry bushes seem to be thriving. Even Kali's pot of carrots, whose future was in question ("no, sweetheart, we don't dig the dirt again after we've already planted the seeds!") is producing some nice little sprouts.

The Toddler
At turns infuriating and endearing, Kali just amazes me. Sometimes she comes up with things that I know I haven't explicitly taught her. Today someone was asking her about the new baby we'll be having soon. Kali explained that she would put the baby in the stroller and take it for a walk and put it on the swings. The adult then asked, "what about feeding? What do you feed a baby?" Kali's response? "Babies eat breastmilk!"

The Pregnancy
I won't lie, the heartburn is killing me and I'm dying to be able to turn over in bed without heaving myself violently like a beached whale in its final throes. But overall I've been blessed with an easy pregnancy, and just enough weight gain to not worry me while at the same time making me feel optimistic about losing not only the baby weight, but the IVF weight too.

The only thing that has scared me recently is, improbably, a charley horse. It woke me up in the middle of the night and was breathtakingly painful. In that moment, suddenly, I thought, "I can't handle this cramp! How am I going to manage in labor?!?" Fortunately, the cramp subsided and I'm left both laughing and silently fretting.