Saturday, October 24, 2009

Our first major outings

Chris and I were invited to a wedding only two weeks after Coraline was born. Needless to say, she was a big hit at the party.

Next, we decided Coraline should get to pick her first pumpkin for Halloween from the Pumpkin Patch.

More cute photos

Nana's (Chris's mom) hand is caught in this photo. hehe. Coraline looks like she's trying to rock an imaginary microphone. That's my little rockstar!

New Arrival!!!

She's FINALLY arrived. I know, I'm late in writing this by two weeks. Yes, Coraline Vyara Laycock was born October 9th, 2009 at 5:04 am. She was 7lbs. 8oz. and 21 inches long. She's cute as a button and we love her very much.

It was a very long and difficult labor. I had been dealing with prodromal labor (constant contractions that stop and start) for a few days leading up to the big day. So, I was exhausted by the time they admitted me to the hospital. We were in labor for 36 hours before having to have an emergency c-section. not fun.

I'm recuperating and have been blessed to have so many wonderful family members helping Chris and I to deal with household chores while we recover and enjoy time with our new baby.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

The Final Countdown!

We just had our 38 week prenatal visit and the verdict is.... (drumroll) we've dilated 1-2 cm and are progressing through what is called, 'latent labor' which means the earliest phase of labor which can take anywhere from mere hours to days or even weeks before reaching 4cm in dilation and consistent, rhythmic contractions which is when we head to the birthing center. Aargh! So yes, we're progressing but it feels like forever. I've definitely been feeling the contractions (of course, a milder version). I've had to take two sick days from work as I dealt with the cramping, backaches and exhaustion. Today was a better day. I actually got 5 hours of sleep last night...the most in weeks! YAY! So, after the doctor's appointment I headed to work to get some hours in and take my mind off of baby business for a bit. Thankfully, the exhaustion isn't as bad today but the cramping and backaches have been continual all day long. Unfortunately, they're just not getting their act together and becoming consistent. Wish us luck. It could be anyday now!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Waiting Game

Though the house is far from being clean and I still have laundry to put away, we're pretty much ready for the Big Day. Our bag is packed, 'care plans' have been arranged for the dog, the carseat is being installed, the baby's room is as ready as it will ever be, childbirth classes have been taken and materials reviewed. Now what?! We wait...and wait...and wait. This is the part that becomes increasingly frustrating. The Waiting Game.

We know that the longer she stays put the bigger and healthier she may be. Not to mention that our OB likes to let babies 'cook' for as long as possible if there's no sign of complications. But, we're so antsy to meet our little one that the waiting seems like an eternity. It certainly doesn't help when I come to work and each day they look at me with surprise that I haven't popped. And, it's already beginning to become annoying when I hear, "You're still here?" or "That baby isn't here yet?" I just wanna say, "Well, duh! Would I be walking into work if I just delivered last night?" the immortal words of Bill Engvall..."Here's Your Sign!"

False Labor is also a pain in the butt, literally and figuratively. Waking up at 3am with contractions so intense you can't sleep and backaches that won't cease only add to the frustration as I get my hopes up (and Chris's) only to have them dashed when everything slows down after 45 minutes. That's the key. They have to last 1 hour. So far I've been able to discern that it's false labor according to the OB because they slow down or decrease before that magic number. Until that happens, I just have to do as my friends say, "Suck it up, buttercup!" They definitely don't tell you about this part of pregnancy, the fact that your belly will suddenly and without warning, stiffen and cramp up into a hardened basketball leaving you breathless for a minute or so, or that this could go on for weeks and become painful. If it weren't for my baby books, classes and the internet I'd have no clue what was going on.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Chris's Baby Dream

So, Chris had his first baby dream and wanted to share it with me. I found it so interesting I thought I'd share it with you!

He dreamt that we were coming home from the hospital with the baby. But, instead of him driving, he actually was in the back seat next to the baby in the carseat. I was in the passenger seat and he couldn't tell if anyone was driving and it didn't seem to matter. The baby was older than a newborn and able to talk and point. At one point he's playing with her and she points behind her (at me) and says, "who's that?" and Chris replies, "That's mommy," and they continue to play. And, then she points to him and asks, "Who are you?" and he replies, "I'm your daddy." And, that's the end of the dream.

Unusual? Yes. But, apparently, fairly common for expectant dads, at least according to I don't know what the significance is behind him willingly taking the backseat and not knowing who's driving. But, it could relate on a more spiritual level that he has finally accepted that he has no control over the outcome of what will happen but that he has faith that everything will be fine and we'll arrive 'home' safe. According to what we've read online, the playing and talking with the child is also very signficant in that it symbolizes acceptance and valuing of the child and an anticipation of fatherhood. This usually occurs earlier for women during the pregnancy as we are more involved in the process from the beginning, but this typically occurs later for men as the final months and weeks come into view.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Crying in the Womb

I just came across some interesting facts in my baby book. For instance, did you know that the baby can cry in utero. So, she's already practicing her first cries in the womb. Guess that's how they're so good at it as soon as they're born. Apparently, studies showed fetuses practicing what they call, "the Crying Reflex". Their little bottom lip quivers, they'll take deep, fast breaths (like gasps) and their mouths will open wide in what looks like crying. There's even a YouTube video of a baby crying in utero, though of course the sound (if any) is not what you would think of because there's no air in their lungs as they practice this. Plus, it's typically associated with what researchers call the "Startle reflex". Meaning that the baby is startled by something loud or some movement outside the womb and will instinctively cry in utero. How fascinating! If you're interested in the Youtube video I'm talking about its:

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

36 weeks and going strong

With only 4 more weeks (or possibly less) we're in the home-stretch. We've accumulated every baby necessity we can think of and are preparing to 'finally' take our childbirth prep classes. Yes, we know, it's a bit late to be taking classes when we're so close to delivering but with Chris's crazy schedule this was the best we could do. We just had to hope for the best and it seems that the odds are in our favor. The Doc checked the baby and gave us the 'all-clear'. She's healthy, head-down and in the right position. We even got to see a quick ultrasound of her, which was thrilling because I haven't seen her since we were 20 weeks (May). She was looking around in her little confined space and practicing sucking. I don't believe I've 'dropped' yet but I've been having increasing Braxton-hicks contractions. They're still not painful, rhythmic and frequent. They're just uncomfortable and annoying. The Doc also said that my cervix was closed still and that it was 50% effaced. He also said that if he were a betting man he'd bet that I'd at least make it to my next appointment in two weeks (38 weeks). That's good. She'll be a good, healthy full-term baby by then.

Monday, August 24, 2009

33 week photos

We're actually at 34 weeks even though these photos were taken at 33 weeks. You can see how much the baby is growing as my belly is getting HUGE!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Where'd the time go?

It wasn't till this week that it finally began sinking in how little time we actually have. I hear that as you get closer to your due date that anxiety sets in and the waiting is the hardest. This is partially true for me. Mostly, I've lost track of time till now. My boss brought me back to reality when he asked how much time I had left. I replied with the exact weeks based on my due date..."7 weeks." To which, he replied, "which means you actually have 5 weeks." This completely blind-sided me. I hadn't thought about it before. I've been thinking about the full 40 weeks and he made me consider that might not be the case. I've known from all my reading ( which I've been almost obsessive about) on when the baby would be considered full-term, i.e. 37 weeks. Yet, it never sank in that anytime around that time she could arrive.

So, I FINALLY made myself think about a small packing list and went shopping for a nightgown and slippers. I've even written up a birth plan to give to whoever is our attending physician or nurse that day. It's really helped calm my nerves a bit to have a plan in place, even if things don't go according to plan at least I have some idea of what our wishes are and what we'd like to request happen so our experience can be a good one. The funny thing is I don't think our parents ever had 'birth plans' or doulas (labor coaches) or lactation consultants at your bedside or the myriad of options or information that we have nowadays that both enlightens us and complicates everything we do. Welcome to the 21st Century!

My dreams have also reflected this growing angst as our due date looms on the horizon. Just recently, while actually riding the bus, I had a daydream vivid enough to make me jump when I finally snapped back to reality. Ironically, I was dreaming that I went into labor on the bus. I dreamt that I had been feeling cramps all day and uncomfortable while at work and that as I was riding the bus home while stuck in traffic that my water broke and suddenly I couldn't stop the labor. It was a horrifying and helpless feeling of not being able to get ahold of Chris in time, and having terrified passengers all around me and no one knew what to do. Waking up finally only to realize where I was, was also very unsettling to say the least. Talk about waking up only to think your still dreaming. I know that this is extremely unlikely, especially with this being our first baby. So, I'm not really worried. Other moms have also told me that its pretty common to have such thoughts or worries prior to as this is just one of those life events that you truly have no control over whatsoever (unless your scheduled for a c-section or induction).

On a lighter note, when Chris reads to me at night (which just happens to be 'Tales of the South Pacific', he can't help himself) she wiggles and kicks and rolls to the side of my belly closest to him. And, when he stops reading, she stops moving and settles down. She responds to him, she knows him now, and it just tickles him. Before now, I would ask him if he'd like to read to me so she could listen and Chris seemed reluctant as it was strange to him. He couldn't see her, or feel her regularly and he wasn't quite certain that she could actually hear him either. But now, she's gotten big enough that we can see her roll across my belly and Chris can physically see and feel her respond to him as he talks. And, so he's taken to initiating this little ritual of ours every night and even asking if he can read to us with one hand on my belly.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Office Baby Shower

So, yesterday my wonderful co-workers threw me a baby shower. It was simple and fun. Unfortunately, the photos are too big to post. I'll try to reformat them and post them later. However, just for the record, the men in my office provided the best comedy relief. Every comment that had me rolling, every piece of advice in the card they all gave me that had something hysterical to say, came from the men in my office. Two of the best comments came from my supervisor and my team-member Jarrod.

Jarrod: "Congrats on the kid, Casey. I can't wait to take her to the park so I can pick up chicks. Call me if you ever need a sitter!"

Scott (my supervisor): "Supervise her playing with fire. Just a suggestion."

AND, last but certainly not least, the best comment overall was "Never, never shake a baby" Apparently, the onslaught of 'shaken baby syndrome' advertisements on the Denver radio stations is finally hitting home.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

10 weeks and counting down

I can't believe we're only 10 weeks away from meeting our baby girl! She's growing every week and responding more and more to our voices and to light. As an FYI, we will be delivering at the Center for Childbirth at Good Samaritan Hospital in Lafayette, CO. It's a gorgeous hospital in a very peaceful and beautiful part of Colorado. The birthing center is wonderful and the staff seem very patient, kind and welcoming. Plus, it's only 20 minutes from our house. I told my mom where I was delivering and she immediately squealed, "Oh, Casey. That's a good omen." She explained that by coincidence, Good Samaritan Hospital in Ohio is where she did her residency to become a registered dietitian and had nothing but glowing remarks about it. I hope she's right and that this is a good sign. Our friends, Amber and Chris delivered their twins there and though it's been a tough experience to watch their twins in the NICU, the staff have helped gain my confidence that, whatever happens, they're going to provide the best experience possible.

Monday, July 20, 2009

26 Weeks: Belly Photos

Yes, we're late in getting these out. We're already 29 weeks along but the photos are from 26 weeks. I'll try to get photos at 30 weeks to catch everyone up. For those that don't know yet, we've finally settled on a name. Coraline Vyara Laycock. What tickles us is that she actually responds to it. Chris will say her name to her and she kicks in response. She's getting much bigger. Her newest developments are that she gets the hiccups now and then, and she's taken to rolling, twisting, and jabbing me as she is getting too big to kick. Supposedly, she has eyelashes and hair now and can actually blink her eyes, which is so cool to me.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

New baby to the family!

Our little girl now has a new cousin, and she's excited! Chris's brother, Rusty and his wife, April just welcomed a little girl... Cordelia (not sure how to spell it yet) 7lbs or so, this morning at 10am. We're all really excited.

And, our little girl has been doing flips and twists and kicks ALL morning to celebrate. YAY for babies!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Baby Names

I am having so much trouble with baby names for girls. Chris and I can only agree to two: Rebeccah June and Vyara (middle?). AArgh! Chloe we also like but can't decide. Everything else that I've offered, Chris dislikes (sigh). It's funny that we were completely settled on a boy's name. There was no contest. But, we just keep going back and forth on lil' girls' names. Does anyone have suggestions? Or went through this too? What did you do to find the right name?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Baby Registry

Just a quick note. For those of you who've been wondering (and asking) we've finally registered at Babies R' Us. The link is on the right-hand side of the blog. We may eventually register at Target as well if I can get Chris's schedule figured out.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Belly Photos at 20 Weeks

I'm going about this a bit backwards I know. I meant to put this photo up awhile ago so everyone could see the baby belly at 20 weeks. We're already 24 weeks (that's how behind I am on getting photos up). I promise I'll have some updated ones in a week or so. In the meantime, this photo is in Oahu as I took my first dip in the Pacific Ocean with the baby. The beautiful Lei was given to me when I arrived in Hawaii from our friends Jennifer and Aaron Anderberg, who we were staying with for our trip. I'll be posting more of the Hawaii photos with the baby belly in a week or two. We had a wonderful time and within the week that we were visiting I had grown noticeably. Each day, Chris would comment, "Wow, has your belly grown since yesterday?" In fact, Chris's first time to feel her kick was while we were in Hawaii. I guess, she was having such a blast she couldn't contain herself. One of the most interesting fun facts that I learned is that my belly floats, even if I don't. hehe! The rest of me might have to keep treading to stay above water but my belly was its on flotation device. This inevitably created some comical moments while trying to snorkel.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Quiet Time

I've always had a respect for single mothers. I couldn't imagine how difficult it would be to be alone during your pregnancy or raising your child single-handedly. But, now that Chris has left for the summer to work at Camp I have two months without him as I transition from 2nd trimester to 3rd trimester. I'm only getting a small taste of what it's like to be alone and pregnant, and it has made me appreciate those brave, strong single women even more!

I treasure the quiet time I have, feeling the baby grow and wiggle and kick but I do wish Chris were here more often to enjoy her development as well. This is his baby too and he misses not being here to be a part of this. Not to mention the fact that there are SO many things that I have difficulty doing or just plain shouldn't do because of pregnancy. So, I have to be patient and wait till he can come back and take care to them for me. Or, I have to rely on friends to help me. I've never felt so helpless before. At least I have the dog to keep me company. He's taken over very well as my protector and takes his job VERY seriously! ;) almost TOO seriously. He won't leave my side for a minute, tries to nudge my belly with his nose (I think he believes I have a tapeworm in me or something) and he barks and growls at anything that comes remotely close to the house (squirrel, bird, an name it). But, don't take this as self-pity or complaining. I'm thankful for all the friends I have to help me out and this little trial has only helped me realize even more how many wonderful people are in my life. I know that Chris will be home soon and at least able to be a part of the end of our pregnancy and, more importantly, present at the birth of our first child. I'm just glad that the part of the pregnancy he had to miss is the one with the least amount anxiety attached to it. You have to find a silver lining in every cloud.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Baby Dream II

I dreamt I was chasing a giggling little girl with little blonde curls around the house as Chris was trying to get ready for work. She was tromping in her dad's shoes, which were enormous on her, and wearing one of Chris's ties loosely over head, which dangled all the way to the floor. As I called after her, she gave up the shoes and tore through the kitchen, squealing with delight right into one of Chris's legs.
At this point, I can't wait to meet her and I wonder what she'll look like. She likes music, I think. She wiggles a lot during my belly-dance class and just tonight as I was listening to some classical music she began kicking in rhythm to Mozart's Turkish March. She never ceases to amaze me.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Bye-Bye Feet!

I asked my other pregnant friends to give me a list of all the things they miss most during their pregnancy.  I had to pass them along:

-Pooping regularly
-Bending over without falling on your face
-Sleeping on my stomach
-Late night snacking (without horrible heartburn)
-Shaving my legs without having to sit down (also trimming 'down there' without having to have help. Guess it's time I tried a bikini wax).
-Hugging someone without my boobs feeling like they've been hit with a 2x4.
-Sushi (drool!)
-Wine and/or Champagne 
-Imported cheeses
-Roller coasters and bumper cars
-Smoked meats or salmon
-Sleeping through the night without peeing every five minutes
-Laughing or sneezing without peeing my pants
-Being intimate with my husband without feeling like Mt. Everest is in the way.

Ahh, the little trials. Just keep telling yourself it's all worth it in the end.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

More Pics

Here's a top-side view of the baby. Slightly cute and slightly scary. I can see her little face but skeletal views are very weird to look at. You can see her tiny arms and a hand close to her face.  The next photo you can see one of her tiny feet.

The Admiral's Daughter

Yes, you read it right. IT'S A GIRL! Wow. My premonition was right.  We just got back from Hawaii and baby's first trip to the Pacific and snorkeling, and it was time to get our ultrasound. I've uploaded the pics and you should be able to see all the details. We were ecstatic! Chris is already smitten. She was sucking her thumb, and kicking, and playing with her toes.  You should have seen Chris's grin. We're now 21 weeks along and already her kicks and nudges are strong enough that Chris has actually been able to feel them when he puts his hand on my belly.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Badge of Honor?

Okay, so this is more of a question than a post. And, a bit of a rant too. Why do other mothers feel compelled to tell horror stories about birth and pregnancy to first-time moms-to-be? I'm already a worry-wort and obsess about everything. Why do other women feel the need to freak me out even more so?

I have no idea how my own labor and birth experience will be. For all I know it could be completely normal. Nothing out of ordinary. No horrible, traumatizing, agonizing moments. But, it sure doesn't help when women around me like to leave that seed of doubt in my brain and the thought that I possibly 'could' be just like them. Nor does it help when other women tell painful and terrifying possibilities of stillbirth and death to a young mom. The last thing I want to hear is, "oh, you're nearly 5 months?! My daughter lost her baby when she was 6 months pregnant and she had no warning or complications."

AHHHHH. Why would anyone say that?! I sympathize. I truly do, but I am not the person with whom you should be discussing this. The LAST thing I need to stress about is the myriad of ways I could lose my baby. Thanks. I really needed that. Have any other mothers out there been through this? What do you do to get through all this with your sanity intact?

Weird little changes

I can tell that my perspectives are changing gradually. Granted, part of this is due to the wonderful part of pregnancy that involves huge doses of hormones being pumped in larger- than- normal volumes throughout your body.

But, let's face it newborns look strange. They just look weird. And, to top it off I could never stand the idea of watching a birth video. It completely freaked me out. Yet, lately I've found myself intensely engaged in watching numerous online videos on on c-sections, and water births, and inductions, and newborn after-birth medical care. It didn't matter how gorey it was, I was completely fixated on that little squirming, wailing baby as it came into the world. I would cry right along with the mother in the video and think, "What an incredible moment," "What a beautiful baby" even though it's covered in guck. Strange, how mother nature can change your mind.

Monday, May 4, 2009

18 Week Pictures

As promised (though a bit delayed) here are the latest pictures. I'm 18 weeks right now.  The baby bump is becoming a little more pronounced but I still wouldn't say that I've 'popped' yet. I have a long torso so the doctor said it could be closer to 5 1/2 or 6 months before I'm really showing.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Mythbusters: 2nd Trimester Edition

I've heard that the 2nd trimester is the easiest and so far this is true. However, some of my worst nights so far have been within the last week. Whoever said you'll get more sleep in the 2nd trimester was clearly lying. I've had less sleep due to the terrible heartburn that won't go away so I end up sleeping while sitting up. Between the heartburn, the aches in my hips and sides from sleeping on my sides more often, and worst of all, horrible leg cramps, I've had some pretty miserable nights. I haven't had a Charlie Horse that bad in years. In fact, my right calf is still sore. owwweeee!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Chris's Adventures

Chris had a field day today. He used to work with several special needs kids throughout Denver but was recently moved to a different scouting program. However, one of the special needs teachers, Ms. Karen Baker, who he used to work closely with has stayed in touch and invited him to two recent events that have both touched our hearts and had us rolling with laughter.

His first reunion with Ms. Baker was a month or so back when she invited him to join her class at "Disney on Ice". They needed a vehicle and driver (i.e. Chris) to get them there and they would take care of the rest. So it was that Chris was reunited with the special needs kids that would make him smile routinely. They immediately bum-rushed him in a gaggle of flailing arms, and smiles, and squeals of "Hi, Mr. Chris." He was nearly knocked down by the lot of them. His next few ours during the show, which he thought would be boring and tedious was actually hysterically amusing as he watched all the kids going absolutely bonkers over every Disney character that skated out onto the arena. Those kids were more fanatical about Disney than a group of soccer hooligans at the World Cup! They screamed and danced in the aisles and generally went nuts. He loved it!

Then, just today he was invited again to join the class in watching a movie with them. The show had already started in the classroom before he had arrived, so he snuck in the back and took a seat hoping they wouldn't notice. Ms. Baker, however, DID notice and immediately turned on the lights and announced to the class, "Someone special is here and what do we say?" To which, Chris was bum-rushed AGAIN with squeals of "Congratulations on the BABY, Mr. Chris!" The funniest moment, had to be when one of the girls calls out, "Congratulations to yo' baby Mamma!" The teacher began laughing hysterically and ran out to tell the other teachers.

16 Weeks with the Wiggle Worm

Our prenatal visit was on Tuesday. I have to admit I was a little disappointed that they weren't able to do an ultrasound this time to determine sex. Apparently, my uterus is just a bit too low and still partially nestled in my pelvic bone so we're unable to get a good visual. We'll have to wait till our 20 week visit. The Nurse Practitioner used a doppler instead to hear the heartbeat, which was like watching a comedy as she chased the baby around my belly to hear its heartbeat. I guess we have quite the wiggle-worm. Every time she would find the beat the baby would immediately squirm away to the other side or roll over. I was trying not to giggle as the nurse was getting slightly frustrated with the baby. Definitely our child!

The baby is about the size of an avocado and can already sense light. If I shine a flashlight on my tummy it will squirm away. And, yes, I have finally felt the baby move. It was an amazing moment knowing that the fluttering in my belly was the baby saying, "hello". Chris has begun talking to it on occasion and telling it stories. We don't know if it can hear us yet, but we don't really care.

I had my first awkward moment as a female coworker rubbed my belly the other day. I don't mind friends or family doing that (even though my belly isn't huge, yet) and I don't mind Chris doing that, but coworkers and strangers are a different situation all together. I was caught completely off-guard. I wasn't quite sure how to say, "please don't do that" without offending her. Regardless of the fact that there's a baby in there, it's still my body your touching inappropriately. Thankfully, I haven't had any guys rub my belly, that would just be WEIRD!

We've begun working on the baby's room. An arduous process fraught with arguments about colors, furniture, where to store the stuff that's already taking up space in there... you get the picture. Loads of fun! But, we're getting there slowly. We hope to have it finished sometime this summer. In the meantime, stay tuned for some updated baby belly photos we should be posting soon.

Monday, April 13, 2009

First Trip

So, this past Easter Weekend was our first official vacation with the 'seamonkey' in tow. I was the matron of honor in a friend's wedding on Quintana Beach (just west of Galveston). I've been dreading this trip for quite some time. Not because of my responsibilities in the wedding (which was absolutely beautiful and one of the most casual weddings I've attended) but because I've been afraid of how I would do on an airplane on the tail end of the first trimester. I had heard the horror stories of how motion sickness is exacerabated by pregnancy and had felt my fair share of it every time I've taken the bus to work. Now, instead of a short jaunt by car or bus - which I could quickly get off and get some fresh air and solid ground under my feet- I would be soaring above the clouds for over 2 hours in cramped quarters. Needless to say, I was a bit nervous.

To my delight (and Chris's relief), I did just fine. I think I managed better on the plane than I do in the car when Chris is driving. We had a wonderful time and my growing baby belly got quite alot of attention. We received many congratulations from old college friends and our close friends, Kuda and Darcy even gave us a perfect baby gift... a Texas A&M Pacifier. Gig em' Baby!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Fears of Motherhood

I have to be totally honest. I am terrified of being a mother. Don't get me wrong, I'm also feeling the joy, anticipation and excitement of pregnancy but it's all edged with fear. A nagging fear that I don't know what I'm doing and may be a terrible mother. I know it sounds ridiculous, but it's true. I've always had this naive belief that women have this inate ability to calm and soothe babies, or that we all have a natural born ability to make babies happy.  However, I've also always believed that I just don't have that ability.  God, just left me with an, "I O U" sticker when it came to that gene. You laugh, but it's true. 

If there is a baby in the room, Chris will immediately want to pick it up, hold it and play with it. And, the baby usually responds to him with coos, and giggles, and gurgles and smiles. I, on the other hand, am shrinking into the shadows, praying that nobody asks me to hold the baby. I've even gone so far as to make up ridiculous excuses to save myself the impending embarrasment of holding the baby, which inevitably cries only proving my inadequacy at being a good mother. Insane, I know, ... but I can't help it.  At parties, where a friend might bring their baby I would dread holding the baby but not because I didn't like holding them. That part I loved. I loved cuddling them.  No, what I dreaded was my own fears that the baby would start crying and I couldn't soothe it and in my head the parents are staring at me wondering what's wrong with me and how can she not know what to do to calm a baby. I would try to hold it like the mother, try playing with it like Chris, but nothing seemed to work. I was hopeless. 

I've had one good experience with one really laid-back baby named Morgan. This little guy didn't care what I did, he was so relaxed and enthralled with me. And, for the first time, I felt somewhat calm. I held him for hours and he rarely fussed. Just cooed, and drooled and smiled at me with huge blue eyes.  So, maybe I'm not completely hopeless.

Baby Dreams

It may be a bad idea to talk about a dream that, in reality, may have a completely different ending but I just had to share this.

I dreamt that I was delivering in the delivery center nearby. After the last push, the doctor took the baby and handed it to the nurse who quickly took it away to be cleaned and dressed. Everyone was busy running around or cleaning up. No one was saying anything to me. Chris stood by smiling, trying to comfort me while I frantically began to wonder is it a boy? A girl? Is there something wrong? After what seemed like hours, the nurse came back in with this tiny bundle in her arms and said, "here's your baby."

It wasn't till I was holding this tiny thing (more like a ragdoll than a baby) that I noticed the tiny pink cap and tiny pink blanket.

How ironic it would be if I had a boy instead.

Monday, March 30, 2009

The Artistic Belly

This is our attempt at more artistic photo of my belly. It's not a side shot, which may show a more defined difference in my shape. But, you can see how beautiful the shots will look as we take them month after month in a sequential manner for a more elegant view of how the baby grows. I've been told that it is the size of a lime, measuring only 2 inches in length. Because I'm slender what you're seeing as a baby belly is the uterus becoming more pronounced since I don't have much room to hide it. The baby is already squirming and busy kicking furiously, though I can't feel a thing. Chris agreed that after seeing the ultrasound of the baby busy doing backflips and karate kicks, that it definitely has his genes. As one of our friends jokingly put it about our future parenthood... our kid will definitely be a poster child for Ridalin.

Just an FYI for those who don't know: the baby's due date is October 9th.
At 12 weeks, you can barely discern the tiny baby bump. Our friends would argue that one day I was pregnant and the next day I wasn't, depending on the clothes I wore. I can definitely tell the difference, as my once flat, well-defined stomach is now rounded smooth and slightly protrudes. Not to mention the fact that none of my pants fit anymore. 

A coworker of mine told me about a wonderful maternity item no woman can live without...the belly band. Sure enough, this simple elastic, nylonly-thingy covers over my pants and under my work shirts allowing me to continue wearing my old pants (unbuttoned) for a few more weeks till I'm big enough to fit into maternity pants. To my co-workers it just looks like I'm going for the popular 'layered' look.  What a fabulous gadget!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

12 Weeks and going strong

For those of you who may not know, Chris and I had found out we were pregnant back in November of 2008.  Our excitement was short-lived as we lost the baby at 7 weeks. We were devastated and the months following that event were emotionally trying to say the least. So, when this past February I discovered I was pregnant again we were overjoyed. Our excitement this time around has been tempered due to the previous loss.  So, we waited to tell our extended family till we were at least 9 weeks and had seen two ultrasounds.  The joy of hearing our baby's heartbeat was indescribable - like music to a mother's ears. Chris grinned from ear-to-ear and I began to cry from both relief and happiness. 

At 12 weeks, our obstetrician could hear the heartbeat even stronger at 160 beats/min. With complete dead-pan humor, he added, "hmm. 160 beats. Congratulations, it's a girl." To which, both Chris and I gaped and asked, "Really?" He just smiled and chuckled, "No, it's just an old wives' tale. I just like doing that." Well, I guess we'll see if there's any truth to that.