Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Pregnancy update: halfway there!

Today I'm 20 weeks along, which means I'm halfway through the pregnancy. Which is nuts.

I haven't blogged much in general lately and haven't really discussed much about the pregnancy, so I thought I'd give you a thorough rundown.

- First, the big thing:  it's a girl! We are over the moon about her. Knowing she's a girl makes it totally different to talk about her and to think of her as a person. And Andy has felt her moving three times now, which is fantastic.

And now a more mundane list of what's been going on:
- My skin is always dry, especially on my back. I've been using hippie pregnancy skin toning oil shit (see this post) but am constantly itchy. It's driving me nuts.
- I get up at least once a night to pee. Often it's twice. Sometimes if I wake up for no reason (pregnancy-related insomnia), I can trick myself into going back to sleep by getting up to pee even if that's not why I originally woke up.
- She is getting big enough that my guts are getting squished. My stomach is getting squeezed and I can't fit as much into it, but that doesn't stop me from trying. And then I get heartburn and/or indigestion.
- So far I HATE the maternity pants with the wide elastic waistband. I don't know what it is about my shape that makes the waistband fold in half and then dig in all day. I like the full panel, even though I spend all day hitching them up. Can't wait till it's a little warmer and I can wear dresses without freezing.
 - I have horrible baby brain and forget words for common things (pocket: "um, the place on your pants where you put things"; playpen: "the... box... in the living room... where we put the baby?"). I also forget whole interactions and do things like offer Andy some of my water immediately after I offered him some of my water and he accepted, had some, and handed it back.
- I'm still really tired all the time. I went to bed with my contacts in last week. That hasn't happened since college, and hasn't happened sober probably ever. I even got up twice to pee in the night and didn't notice that I could see stuff. I discovered the error when I couldn't find my glasses on my nightstand the next morning.
- I'm always at least a little thirsty. I'm tired of drinking water all the time. I also have developed a taste for citrus sodas - 7-Up and Squirt in particular.
- I'm in that awkward stage where everyone who knows me well insists that I look pregnant, not just weirdly fat, but I still feel weird and flabby. I'm wearing mostly maternity stuff now, to avoid stretching out my old stuff, and find myself doing that horrible pregnant-celeb "hand always on the belly in public" thing to make it more obvious to strangers that yes, it's a baby, not just holiday leftovers.
- I almost passed out twice during the most recent ultrasound. This isn't unexpected: when you're pregnant and lie on your back, your enlarged uterus presses against the major blood vessels that carry blood to and from the lower body. I had forgotten that, since I'm a side sleeper, but man, it felt awful. I had to roll on my side until I felt better, while the tech tried to continue the ultrasound by awkwardly reaching over and around me.
- I suddenly really like whole milk. I can drink a big glass of milk happily, which hasn't happened since I was a kid. We usually get 1% for us and whole for the baby, but I've usually been drinking hers.
- I haven't really gained any weight. I'm still in the same five-pound window I've been in for about a year, despite eating pretty much whatever strikes me as sounding good (which, granted, is usually not terrible junk food). I asked my doctor about not having gained much, and he said, very cheerfully, "Oh, don't worry, you will!" so I'm not too fussed about it. Also, I really don't like that I actually feel good about not having gained weight, as if it's some sort of accomplishment instead of some weird genetic stroke of luck (my mom only gained 12 pounds with her first pregnancy).
- Andy has been a fucking hero for the last several months. He's attentive and kind and thoughtful, even more than usual. He picks up little things to make me happy whenever he's at the store. He's pretty much totally taken over dinner preparation. The first time I could feel the baby moving from the outside, I happened to be reading in bed, so I texted him to come quick so he could feel it too, and he literally ran from the other side of the house. He comes to bed early when I get tired so I can snuggle him, even when he's not tired. I am so sincerely grateful for him.

So that's what's been taking up a significant portion of my brain lately. Anything you cats want to know that I haven't mentioned?

Friday, January 25, 2013

Internet famous.

Hey, here's a cool thing: I did an interview with the lovely Cassie over at [Witty Title Here] about my experiences as a foster parent.

I tried to keep my answers short, but dang, that was tough! Cassie asked really awesome, thought-provoking questions and I really liked working with her. You should go ahead and bookmark her blog, because it's really brimming with delightful things. Oh, and to my regular readers (all three of you): In the interview, I referred to our foster daughter by her first initial, M, and am going to go ahead and start doing that here. I think that'll help differentiate her from the new kid I'm growing and feels a little more personal than "the baby," which I've been using for over a year.

If you found your way here because of the interview, welcome! Sometimes I cuss a lot. I used to write about really hard-hitting topics like my opinions on custard donuts and why camping is stupid, but now I mostly write about foster parenting and being pregnant, because I don't have the energy to even think about other things. I really like getting comments and I post less often than I wish I did. The end.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Products in my life right now

I am currently loving these things:

I got this sweater in grey from Target, a size up from my usual, and have worn it at least one weekend day every weekend since I got it. I can't find a picture in grey, just this weird periwinkle, because Target's website is truly awful.

I can't find it anywhere online except for at this site, which I can't vouch for in any way, but I got the baby girl this shirt on sale at H&M and love, love, love it. I sent her to a visit wearing it, which made me feel sassy, and she wore it to general acclaim at the party we had this weekend to celebrate having had her for a year. I think all little kids should have a shirt that says this.

I'm borrowing this ridiculous-looking body pillow from my sister-in-law. The pillow is stupid expensive and looks crazy, but all of the internets insist it's the best pregnancy body pillow. I am a pretty intense snuggler at night, and I have been known to chase Andy from my side of the bed all the way to the edge of the mattress on his side in pursuit of a snuggle (whether he wants to snuggle or not), but my belly is already expanding in a way that makes us not fit together the usual way (I'm the big spoon, despite being over a foot shorter, because I hate having someone breathe on my neck). I have been told that this pillow will allow me to prop up the belly as it grows and have something between my knees to help keep my hips aligned.

I've had this super-hippie skin toning oil for a while and have been using it like crazy on my incredible pregnancy-induced dry skin. It contains coconut oil, sweet almond oil, cocoa butter, and Vitamin E. That's all. My skin is still really dry (like by midmorning I'm itching myself on my chair at work like a bear against a tree) and when I put this on it feels like my skin is actually drinking it.

This has been a very exciting post.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Very brief fostering update

The worker told us yesterday that the big thing that might prevent the dad from getting custody of our girl has been declared unfounded. As in, it's been dismissed, basically.

And he's moving into his new three-bedroom place next week. He has been saying since June that he wanted to get into his new place and settled before he filed for custody.

And the worker told me today that the dad doesn't actually have to file for custody to be granted it; the county's goal is "return this child to a biological parent" and his filing would just make his intentions clearer. The judge can still decide the kid's going to her dad even if he doesn't file.

There are things the dad still needs to do to prove that he can adequately parent the kids he does have and maintain a home safe for a very young, very active toddler, but this is a huge change in circumstances. The worker was sure the big thing was solid (and, in fact, it almost certainly did happen and was a huge thing, but the same hospital that misdiagnosed our girl THREE TIMES said that the marks they saw weren't consistent with the report on how they got there). Aside from this and his constant missing of and lateness to visits and doctor's appointments and stuff, there's nothing, really, to indicate he can't provide a minimal level of care. We are now looking at the very real possibility that the girl we've had for a year on Saturday will be leaving us.


Nothing is for sure, and she's  not leaving until the judge says she is, and all that, but you bet I cried when I was rocking her before bed last night. This is my daughter and my very heart is facing losing a big part of itself.