Thursday, October 29, 2009

Slowing down

Well, I've fought the good fight for 33 weeks, but I think it's over. It's official. I have become an annoying slow person. You know, the person you have to speed by on the sidewalk when you're trying to make the light. The person you pass on the right side of the escalator. The person you need to watch hoist herself up out of the train seat before you can get out at your stop.

I've tried to ignore this inevitable progression. I huff and puff with people down the hall at work, I do all the planks and downward dogs in yoga, I swim with the "real" swimmers in the lanes at the pool. But I don't think I'm fooling anyone.

And, more importantly, it's time to stop fooling myself. I fell up an escalator running for the train last week, and even though I didn't land on anything "important" and only ended up cutting/bruising my foot, it was stupid and unnecessary and a little bit scary. Yesterday morning I slipped a bit getting out of the shower -- again, no harm, no foul, but a good reminder to slow the hell down.

And you know what? It feels right. At 33 weeks, I should take more care to acknowledge what my body is doing, and preparing to do. And of course it's time to seriously adjust my thinking -- it's not just me I'm responsible for anymore.

Now if only I could remind myself of this the next time I'm at a crosswalk with the flashing red hand blinking and only 3 seconds left to cross, I'll be all set!

Monday, October 26, 2009

I guess now we have to have a baby.....

Because otherwise, what would we do with all the stuff?

This weekend, we went from empty nursery to packed baby warehouse in under 24 hours. Yesterday morning, I was getting ready to go to my baby shower (which was beautiful -- thanks Mom even though I really hope you're not reading this) when I got the call from the baby furniture store telling us our furniture was in and ready for delivery. Only a short 12 weeks after placing the order! So, about an hour after getting back from the shower and unloading the loot (which was plentiful and PINK), the delivery guy arrived and assembled everything.

(And about 8 seconds after that, one of our cats had already jumped onto the crib rail and started walking the perimeter, before jumping in and making herself a little fort amongst the bedding packages. Sigh.)

It's all starting to seem a bit more real. Which feels mostly great, but also a little....unsettling. I've had more than one friend tell me that at some point in my pregnancy, I will freak the heck out about having a baby. Could this be the time?

If so, I feel like the most ungrateful schmuck ever.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

In which Barefoot complains about public transportation

[Happy ICLW! For new visitors, here's the brief scoop -- I'm 32 weeks pregnant after 2.5 years of infertility and an IVF cycle. I talk about pregnancy a LOT -- it's kind of all I have going on right now -- so please beware if you're not into that. If you would like to read more about my cycle, you can find all kinds of blather on that in the archives between March and May of 2009.]

I know, it's like shooting fish in a barrel. (BTW, does anyone actually do this? I use this phrase all the time and the thought of actually taking a gun to a barrel of fish is simultaneously amusing and horrifying.) Public transportation, while often preferable to sitting in traffic for hours on end, generally sucks. Especially now that every time someone coughs on the train, you can feel a stiff breeze from all of the heads turning and eyes narrowing. It's easy to complain.

As public transportation goes, I'm pretty lucky. I live in the SF Bay Area and ride BART, which all in all is a pretty comfy ride. Padded seats, not too many bumps, etc. But let's face it: when you've got a watermelon strapped to your front, there is no "fun" in, um, public transportation.

Now that I'm visibly pregnant, people for the most part have been pretty great about the whole giving up the seat thing. Which is nice, because feel like such an a**hole asking that I'll just stand and bear it. Usually after a few minutes, I smack enough people with my belly that someone notices. Or, if I'm really desperate, I'll give the bump a couple of "absentminded" rubs. And honestly, it's less about having to stand (which is not such a big deal yet), and more about having a little extra space so that the chicklette's not getting an accidental elbow to the head.

But wouldn't you know it, the few times when I'm super-tired or having lower back pain or general crampiness are the times when no one will give it up. And you know what? It's always some 25-year old clean-cut guy in business gear, sitting in the "reserved for seniors or people with disabilities" seats, tapping away on his BlackBerry. Not that I have anything against corporate preppy guys -- heck, I married one -- but COME ON. Are you really going to avert your eyes and ignore me for a half-hour?!? Are you really going to make me ask? DO YOU REALLY ENJOY HAVING MY BELLY SIX INCHES AWAY FROM YOUR FACE? (And on a related note, Mr. Gap Man, did you really just cut me off to sneak into the LADIES room at the BART station?)

I know I probably just need to sack up and ask for a seat when I need one. Nothing less attractive than a passive-aggressive preggo.

But I don't liiiiiike to. Wah.

[New visitors, aren't you glad you stopped by this whine-a-thon?]

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Home sweet home

After seven weeks, 35 additional commute hours (per person), countless take-out meals, and I-don't-even-want-to-think-about how many dollars, our remodel is done and we're HOME. Hooray.

The big part of the project was the bathroom remodel. We live in a 3/1 ranch, but didn't want to expand too much and price ourselves out of the market when we do eventually (please God) sell the house. So we opted to redo our existing bathroom, making it luxurious enough for the grown-ups AND durable enough for the kid.

Here's the old bathroom. As you can see, we had only a stand-up shower (no bath), a pedestal sink, and some interesting storage.

Here are a couple of pictures of the bathroom post-demo. We opted to move one wall 18 inches into our third bedroom/office, so that we could have a little extra room for the new tub setup and linen closet. You can probably see the nasty dirty termites crawling around -- their discovery set us back another couple grand, but we'd always suspected we had them so it was sort of a relief to deal with it already.

And now for the big reveal! On the right side, you'll see a new vanity, toilet, medicine cabinet and overjohn. We also installed new light fixtures, hardware, paint -- well, everything. Another nice space-saving change was the installation of a sliding pocket door (not pictured) -- now we don't have to make room for a big door swinging into the bathroom.

On the left side, we have a whirlpool tub/shower combo (sorry for the fuzziness in the second picture, and our new built-in linen/laundry closet. I didn't get any good pictures of the tub, but I've already logged some serious time and I will tell you it is HEAVEN. I am a huge bath fan and I can't believe I managed to live in a house for almost 4 years without one.

The other parts of the project were the replacement of hardwood floors in the bedrooms/office/hallway, since we'd had some termite damage and pretty much hated the floors that were in there. Here's one of our cats approving of the change (or maybe disapproving, it's hard to tell sometimes):

We also painted the baby's room, the office and the hallway. I'll save the nursery for some time when we actually have furniture (don't get me started on how long we've been waiting for THAT). The color turned out a wee bit, um, radioactive, so we might make another change. But hey, if one paint color is the worst misstep we had, I'm not complaining.

So there you have it -- the great Barefoot remodel of 2009.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Transverse "lay"

OK, apparently it's actually a transverse "lie," but I swear my OB said "lay" yesterday, which perked my husband's ears right up as it sounded vaguely dirty.

But it's not. A transverse lie is what they call it when your baby feels like lying (laying? I can never get that straight) sideways, rather than head-down. In my case, it's not really a big deal yet because babies don't generally get into launching position until after 32 weeks. But it does explain why my stomach has been looking a little wide and OMG CAN YOU PLEASE GET YOUR FEET OUT FROM BETWEEN MY RIBS, BEBE?!?

Anyway, so I'm thinking lots of head-down thoughts and doing extra puppy poses, which the yoga instructor says is supposed to help such things. At least I think it's the puppy pose -- I've been a cat, cow, pigeon and camel in the last couple of weeks so it gets kind of confusing. But basically it means you get on all fours and put your head down on your crossed arms, which doesn't look like a puppy at all IMHO but does have the added benefit of moving the baby off of your bladder. If only I could work all day in puppy pose, I would be getting a lot more done.

Anyway, back to the doctor. Everything otherwise looks/sounds good (my weight gain seems to be plateauing, which was nice news), and I got a seasonal flu shot. Supposedly the swine flu shot will be arriving at my OB's office "any day now," so I have that to look forward to.

Oink! Have a great weekend, everyone.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Thinking of many, many of you today (which is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day). Wishing peace to anyone who has suffered a loss or losses.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Mr. Stinky Breath

The Mr. has become the most recent casualty of my super sniffer. About a week ago, I woke up in the middle of the night (as is my wont, or rather, my bladder's), inhaled deeply, and gagged.

The offender? My husband's breath.

I figured maybe it was the Taco Bell we had for dinner that night, tilted his head to the other side, and fell back asleep.

Every night since then, it's struck again. And it's not just in the middle of the night -- sometimes I catch a whiff when we're watching TV, or he's giving me a hug, or certainly during more, um, private times. I ask him to brush his teeth, and it doesn't help. And I know he's got good dental hygiene -- gets his teeth cleaned regularly, brushes and flosses and all that good stuff.

Certainly other things continue to offend my nose to a heightened degree (hello, public transportation and work refrigerator), but this particular case is ever so slightly more inconvenient. I mean, how are we supposed to take care of business during these last weeks of relative peace and quiet? It's not like the belly hurdle isn't already making things a bit challenging in that department.

Which shall likely be a topic for a whole 'nother post.....

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A series of boring updates

First of all, thanks to everyone who encouraged me to write the love letter to the Mr. I really enjoyed writing it and giving it to him on our anniversary on Sunday. He was thrilled and so moved, and read it 5 times.

Of course, then we ended up bickering about our remodel and baby to-do list all through our dinner, but at least we had a couple of good moments first!

In other news, I am starting to feel like a major wuss because I am starting to get uncomfortable. I mean, come on, it's only 31 weeks, right? But between the shortness of breath, the random stretchy pains, the expanding ribcage, the growing boobs (seriously? MORE???) and the fact that I needed the Mr. to help me try on shoes at the shoe store over the weekend, I'm starting to feel like a big pile of suck. And I know there's so much more to come.....

BUT, the fabulous news is that our remodel is DONE. All that's left to do is have the cleaners come for a deep clean, move a bunch of furniture back where it belongs, and move back in this weekend. I'll post some pics once we've gotten everything looking all pretty.

Now all that's left is to wait for the baby furniture.....

Friday, October 9, 2009

The New "Normal"

This morning I woke up, refreshed and ready at 6:15, and commented to my husband:

"Wow! What a great night's sleep. I only got up to pee 3 times!"

At which point he snorted, rolled his eyes, turned over, and went back to sleep.

Obviously, infertility, treatments and pregnancy have changed me in countless important and fundamental ways. But this morning's episode got me thinking about the countless, semi-trivial ways in which I've changed over the last 3 or so years (beyond the constant need to pee and the ability to fall asleep immediately afterwards -- and OK, sometimes during).

To wit:
  • I'd never gotten blood drawn before my first infertility workup, and was so grossed out/scared that I had to shut my eyes and do deep breathing. Now I avidly watch and discuss things like the color of my blood and needle technique with the lab tech.
  • Pelvic exams and other occasions where medical professionals insert things in my hoo-ha are no longer a big deal.
  • I've come to appreciate work as a distraction from disappointment.
  • I've come to realize that I can indeed live without red wine for extended periods of time.
  • I've learned how to ask for help lifting my suitcase into the overhead bin (sort of -- this is a work in progress).
  • I've always been sensitive about my weight, and people commenting on it. Now I find comments about the growing size of my belly reassuring, and actually enjoy when people touch my belly.
  • On a related note, I used to perish the thought of walking around in my bathing suit. Now being in the water feels SO GOOD, I let it all hang out and don't even really think about it (except when my giant boobs occasionally pop my suit open).
  • I crave sweets.
  • I have hair growing in odd places.
  • When my husband tells me I look beautiful, I don't fight it -- I just smile and appreciate the compliment.
  • Have I mentioned the size of my boobs?
What about you? Anyone care to share in what crazy ways this whole roller coaster ride has changed you?

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Babymoon, take 2

It's Fleet Week here in San Francisco, and the Blue Angels are doing practice runs overhead, which must mean it's almost anniversary time! Six years ago this week I was an hour late to my own wedding because of traffic streaming out of the Presidio after the Blue Angels air show. Which resulted in my poor now-husband having to give a speech to the assembled guests letting them know that I was NOT leaving him at the altar, but just stuck in gridlock in the back of a limo. Thank goodness for cell phones!

To mark this momentous occasion, we have planned a second babymoon this weekend, to try and make up for the fact that our previous attempt didn't exactly have the glow of romance to it. So I used hotel points to book us a room downtown, where we will blissfully (hopefully) be tourists in our own city for a weekend. We have dinner reservations, and big plans to walk around aimlessly and maybe ride a cable car or two.

Given that we just spent a buttload of money remodeling and buying baby stuff, there will be no gifts exchanged this year. But, I'm thinking of totally cheesing out and writing a love letter to the Mr. He has always been more than I could have hoped for, but in this past year particularly. I feel like I don't tell him enough what an amazing partner he is, and so I think I'm going to take a crack at putting it in writing before my brain turns to baby mush.

Has anyone else ever done this? Any advice?

Monday, October 5, 2009

Baby Basics

We took our first prenatal class -- Baby Basics -- over the weekend. It was definitely basic, which was a good thing for this only child with very limited baby experience. Although I have to imagine that changing a dry diaper on a doll is going to be wee bit less complicated than changing a squirming baby with poop running down her leg with a cat on the changing table and the phone ringing on 2 hours of sleep. But I suppose those would be hard conditions to simulate.

Now, I'm always the eager beaver in class-type situations -- lots of questions, and notes, and probably annoying the crap out of everyone else -- but I couldn't help noticing that a lot of the couples in the room looked very unhappy. Or at least seriously disinterested. The classes aren't mandatory, so I don't really get it. But it made me kind of sad for them. I guess you never really know what people are going through. And honestly, maybe they were all just in food coma or something since the class was right after lunch.

But it did remind me, once again, that while infertility sucks the big one, it's certainly removed any ambivalence I thought I had about becoming a parent. I guess I'll have to wait and see if poop sucks worse than Lupron, but I'm pretty sure I'll be happy to go with the poop.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Why you should not read Twilight while pregnant

WARNING: Spoilers ahead for anyone reading or contemplating reading the Twilight series.

OK, I confess. I've now read the Twilight series not once, not twice, but THREE TIMES. Inside of a year. My excuse: I've found the complete escape into fantasy to be super-comforting during this crazy year of infertility diagnoses, Clomid, IVF and pregnancy.

For anyone else who's read the books, I'm sure we can all think of some very obvious reasons why reading the series -- particularly the final book -- might not be a wise choice for either an infertile OR a pregnant woman (or for someone like me, who's been both infertile and pregnant at different times while reading it). Whether it's Bella getting pregnant on her first cycle, a pregnancy that involves severe morning sickness, an unenthusiastic father, severe illness, blood-drinking and broken bones, or a childbirth that culminates in a c-section via vampire teeth, exsanguination, and death -- well, it's quite a buffet of horrors.

But, even knowing that, I've read the books THREE TIMES. What a loser.

It should have come as no surprise that at some point I'd have a very graphic dream with some Twilight-y goodness mixed in. When it finally happened last night, while I was mildly disappointed that it did not take the form of a sex dream about Edward, I was

also pleasantly surprised that it did not involved me getting my spine crushed by the chicklette.

But it was disturbing nonetheless. I dreamt that I brought my daughter home from the hospital, where she immediately began speaking (a la Renesmee). Not just speaking, but telling me all of the things I was doing wrong.

Mommy, you're not fastening the car seat right.

Mommy, I don't like this car seat.

Mommy, you're not holding my head right.

Mommy, your breast milk tastes yucky.*

The takeaway? As much as I'd like to escape into the world of Twilight from time to time, I'm super-glad that I won't have to worry about this kind of backtalking for at least a couple of years.

*And by the way, where did my subconscious come up with THAT?