thankful

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thankful

I can't believe I'm posting over here! I have a fairly lengthy TTC journal, which I have bittersweet feelings about leaving. But we have a new beginning and here I am!

My name is Ruth (31) and DH is Al (almost 29). We've been married for the best five years of my life. You could say we were college sweethearts, but we were really just friends. Biggrin We met when he was a freshman and I was a senior and he just felt like my little brother for a long time. I stuck around after graduation and we continued our friendship. We got a lot closer during his senior year and finally realized (although several of our friends figured it out before we did) that our feelings went deeper than friendship. Long story short, we were married about a year after he graduated and I feel like I am absolutely the most fortunate woman in the world. I have no idea how I got this lucky, but I'm just grateful and try not to question it.

We really enjoyed our time pre-children and I was even reluctant to want to start a family and "ruin" our relationship. Al was ready before me, believe it or not. So we decided to give it a shot the day I graduated with my masters. I knew my mother and sister both had terrible, terrible m/s and I wanted to finish school first. I've always had extremely regular cycles and we both come from a very fertile bunch - 5 unplanned pregnancies between my parents and Al's parents. I was shocked when we got a BFN. Then another. Then another one. Convinced that something was wrong, I finally booked an appointment with an RE and went through the gamut of tests. A few mild issues came up with me (slight blockage in my right tube and one slightly elevated hormone) but nothing that would really explain the infertility. So I did a cycle of clomid and we did an IUI. BFP! I was so excited. Alas, the pregnancy was ectopic and it was a nightmare. We had a forced 3 month break and tried one natural cycle. Then we did clomid and the IUI again. BFP! This time I'm pretty sure we have a keeper. BiggrinBiggrinBiggrin HCG levels were great and our first u/s at 6 weeks showed a singleton (thank God!) in the RIGHT place, with a beating heart. I cried.

I was 7 weeks yesterday. The m/s hit pretty hard right around 6 weeks. I only vomited once, but that was actually right before AF was due and I think it was probably my body adjusting to being pregnant. I'm exhausted. It's comparable to mono. It's Saturday and I've taken two naps and haven't done one productive thing today. Shocking, if you know my personality and usual energy level. My house is a disaster and I MUST do laundry today or we'll be wearing formals to work next week. Lol

I have blood sugar issues (low blood sugar) and this pregnancy thing is making things more difficult to deal with. I need to eat about every 1/2 hour or I feel like I haven't eaten in weeks. But I have to be careful what I eat and how much or I'll feel sick. Despite the almost constant nausea, starvation feelings and much more frequent eating, I've lost three pounds. Sad I'm sure I'll put it back on and then some, though. Wink

I'm trying REALLY hard not to complain. I have so many friends who struggle with infertility and we also waited a really long time for this. I know that this is a gift - a miracle, no less - and that this nausea, starvation and exhastion will pass (soon, I hope!). I'm trying to enjoy this pregnancy and be grateful for this gift from God.

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here's our first u/s pic, taken at 6 weeks. Heartbeat was 105 bpm. I go back in just over a week for another u/s - yay!

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We decided to skip church this morning and go to the evening service instead. We're both really involved in our church (we both sing in the choir and lead a children's choir of K-1st grade) and things will be very busy for a long time after Labor Day... so right now it feels good to play hooky. Smile

We have had the most unbearable heat this summer. June and some of July was actually pleasant, but August has been one of the hottest on record. And we were already WAY below average for the year with rain. It seems like the entire country is suffering with flooding and we can't get a sprinkle. Anyway, we got some kind of front last night and it got down to 60 degrees!! When I saw that it was 71 on our outside thermometer this morning, we decided that we just had to take a walk. I can't tell you how good it felt to go outside and feel the fresh air and cool breeze on my face. It was like how you feel after recovering from a long illness. I just feel so much better today. Amazing how a little thing like a cooler temperature can change your whole outlook. Biggrin

Here are some belly pics. 6 weeks/7 weeks. I think I see a tiny difference, but it could also be the camera angle. It looks like my butt grew more than my tummy. Lol

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Back to work today. Sad I guess I should mention that Al and I are both musicians who teach for a living. We teach in the same district but in different schools. I was moved up to high school this year, so we have the same schedule. Yay! I love these hours, too, although my m/s has issues with them so far - 7am-2pm. I try to get up around 4:45am so I have an extra half hour to moan and groan and try to not feel sick. It's been working pretty well so far. Usually by the time I get to school, I'm okay.

So I teach 5 sections of piano and 1 section of intro to voice. I'm SO like a fish out of water teaching voice. I've sung for years and had a little voice training when I was in college, but a good singer I am not. Even though I teach that little children's choir at church, it's VERY different working with little kids compared to high school students. It's okay, though. Lord willing, this is my last year teaching full-time. I've been teaching private piano lessons for more than 10 years now, and will be able to continue that after the baby comes. It actually seems almost too good to be true... Al teaches during the day while I watch the baby, then gets home and watches the baby while I teach a few nights a week. As long as we make sure we get some together time, we'll both be able to earn somewhat of an income without needing daycare. Not that there's anything necessarily wrong with daycare (people have to do what they have to do), but we just don't make enough $$ to justify the expense of constant sitters.

Anyway, I have a bittersweet relationship with teaching this year. I absolutely loathe getting up so early and feeling so sick, and I don't want to come to school (our bed is SO inviting) but once I get here I'm usually okay. Our school is huge so the students have 6 minutes between classes. Since all teachers have hall duty between classes, I try to take some crackers or something to munch on between classes to keep food in my system. I just hope I never have to puke while I'm teaching. No one knows I'm pregnant yet, either...

Well, my lunch just ended so back to work!

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7 weeks, 4 days

I had the WEIRDEST dream ever last night. I've heard that women will sometimes have different kinds of dreams when pregnant, but I was just astonished at how real and odd it was.

As I mentioned before, I'm not really singer but play piano. In my dream, I got a call for a gig to do a musical. So far, pretty normal. The director told me I didn't have to come to any of the rehearsals except for a dress the morning of opening night (this part of the dream is out of the ordinary because there would never be a dress on the morning of a show). So I get to the dress, thinking I'm going to be playing piano down in the pit, and the director informs me that I have the lead! :shock: :shock: We were doing The Wiz and I had to learn all my lines and solos and stage directions that morning. I kept looking around for Candid Camera or something. Lol It was terrifying and so real!

So when I told my DH about it this morning, he thought it was probably my apprehension about teaching voice this year. I bet he's right. I feel SO uncomfortable teaching voice when I don't really know how to sing correctly myself.

Anyway, the m/s is okay today. I waited too long to eat before breakfast, but once I forced it down I was okay. Same with lunch. It sucks to have such a rigid schedule. I try to eat snacks between classes, but it doesn't always work out...

So even though we've seen the heartbeat and I have all kinds of pregnancy symptoms, I can't help but worry sometimes. Did the baby stop growing? Is it okay? Is it still alive? Are these feelings normal? I hope so. Smile

My second u/s is one week from today. Fingers crossed that everything is okay!!

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7 weeks, 6 days

I have felt SO good for the past two days. I was worried about it yesterday, but today I'm just really thankful and happy! I'm still exhausted, have no energy, and have the sore boobs, but I'm not nauseated. Yahoo I figured it might come back today because I had a few nauseated moments last night, but so far so good.

Tomorrow's Friday! BiggrinBiggrinBiggrinBiggrin I can't wait to sleep this weekend. I wish I could quit work right now. If I didn't have to work full-time, maybe I'd find the time/energy to clean my house. Wink Alas, we need the $$ and especially the benefits. The good news is that it's a 3-day weekend! Biggrin Life is good.

5 days until my next u/s. Smile

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8 weeks

Wow, I can't believe I'd made it all the way to 8 weeks! Biggrin I'm just so happy and thankful that we're going to have a baby. One thing I learned through my struggles with infertility is that even though it appears that getting pregnant is easy, it's NOT (at least for me) and I now truly regard this as a special gift that not all women will experience. I know I keep getting back to the thankful part of things, but it's absolutely how I feel.

So I was doing okay this morning. I was in the process of scooping oatmeal into bowls for us to eat and all of a sudden I got hit with a wave of nausea like a freight train. It was all I could do to keep from throwing up, but I knew that 1) there was nothing to come up but bile, and 2) I really just needed to eat. It's so funny, because when I feel sick like that, I don't want to eat but I know it's the solution.

Thankfully, I'm better now and working on lunch. Smile

TGIF! Yahoo

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8 weeks, 1 day

Here's my 8 week shot. Since the m/s made me lose weight, I am just now getting back to my starting weight. Thus, I see absolutely no difference from two weeks ago. Biggrin It'll be interesting to see if I really pop out or not. I'm small-framed so I'm hoping I'm not going to look TOO huge. Smile

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Oh man, today has been such a roller coaster. I started out great and was even working in the yard with Al. Then I guess I waited too long to eat or ate something that didn't agree with me - or who knows? - but I felt SO crappy and really haven't felt better for the rest of the day. I took two naps, tried eating different foods, nothing has worked. It's just going to be one of those days, I guess.

I'm about to go to bed. Sleep seems to be my only break from this ickiness sometimes. I feel so sorry for the women who can't sleep. It must be terrible. So far, I've had just one sleepless night but that's because I was starting school and had lesson plans on my mind. Smile

Just a few minutes ago, I did something unusual (for me). Al always asks me to play the piano when he's not feeling good, so I wondered if it might help me feel better. I knew I couldn't play anything that really required mental effort, so I just played a few verses from different hymns and then the slow movement of a Haydn Sonata I played last year. I played the hymns by ear and the Haydn is memorized so I sat in total darkness and relaxed and enjoyed the music. I swear, it's the best I've felt all day. And I realized I almost never really let myself enjoy playing piano because I'm concentrating so hard. I need to do this more often, especially when I know the baby can hear. I wonder what kind of effect music will have on him/her?

Ok, off to bed....

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8 weeks, 2 days

I am a bottomless pit today. I wonder if I can even remember everything I've eaten; it's certainly more than I've ever consumed in a single day before (and the day isn't over yet!). I really hope I'm not going to get humongous, but if I don't eat I feel sick. I'm trying to be healthy, but sometimes I just feel like I need to eat whatever sounds good. Looking over what I've eaten today, I don't think it's been too bad.

  • bowl of oatmeal (we eat this every morning and it used to hold me over until lunch)
  • strawberries
  • banana with peanut butter
  • fruit bar (like a fruit roll-up but without the extra sugar)
  • foot-long turkey sub (heated to steaming and divided into two little meals)
  • baked chips
  • baby carrots dipped in ranch
  • protein bar
  • some trail mix
  • a lean cuisine pizza

And I'm about to hunt down some more food. :roll:

The other thing that is amazing to me is how quickly I can start crying. It's insane. Especially over nothing. For example, Al had also gotten a footlong sub and when he went to eat the second half (my sub was long gone) I asked him what he was thinking about dinner and he said that this would probably do it for him for the night. The thought of no dinner - a ridiculous thought, anyway, because since when am I only allowed to eat when he's eating? Lol - made me immediately start crying. This was at least the second time I've lost it today over absolutely nothing. Fortunately, Al has a good sense of humor about it and helps me see how hormonal I am...

Thankfully, only a few minor nausea spells today. Smile Is it overly optimistic to think the worst is over? Smile

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8 weeks, 4 days

I got back a little while ago from my second u/s. Everything is great! Yahoo We got to see - and hear!!! - the heartbeat (which was just pounding away at 184 bpm). We saw little legs and arm buds and our little beanie wiggle around a bit, too. Just amazing.

So I still have a huge cyst on my right ovary (6 cm! :shock:) but it's starting to go down a bit, thankfully. I've officially been released to a regular OB. Yay!!! Now I just have to get on the ball and find one... Smile

It (temporarily) makes the m/s seem worth it. But I have trouble with delayed gratification and the m/s is just wearing me down. I'm just trying to focus on the fact that these icky feelings will go away and it'll all be worth it.

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8 weeks, 6 days

I am so hungry today. I brought a sandwich, graham crackers, carrots, and a protein bar with me today. So far I just have the protein bar (which I'm saving for after school) and just a few graham crackers left. Sad I'm starting to panic a bit about the food situation. I guess I can eat the protein bar and then drive through somewhere right after school.

In other news (is there other news besides food? :lol:), my m/s isn't as bad today. Yahoo And I have some energy, too! Yahoo

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9 weeks, 1 day

We shared the big news with our church choir Thursday night. Al made the announcement and said something along the lines of taking choir recruitment seriously and that we were going to be adding a new choir member in April. Smile It was great! Everyone was so happy for us (especially the ones that know about our m/c).

I realized when we left the rehearsal that there is joy in this whole act of procreation after all. It took us so long to get pregnant, then the loss, then waiting longer, etc. I didn't realize it until I felt the happiness everyone in our choir had for us, but I've had such deep sadness about this whole process and now I'm finally able to feel the joy that a new life is supposed to bring. It was like a tremendous weight lifted.

Of course, it's a bittersweet joy because I just found out that Sarah (uropachild) just lost her baby again late in her pregnancy. I'm so sad for her. Who can understand the workings of God? I hope someday she knows and understands why she has had so much pain and sorrow...

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9 weeks, 2 days

I met my new OB on Friday. She's nice and I like her staff, too. They're really upbeat and high energy, which I am not right now. Lol But hopefully I'll be able to keep up with them in a few weeks. Biggrin

SO ready for the m/s to go away. I really shouldn't complain, but it really takes its toll when you're in a constant state of feeling crappy...

Anyway, here's a 9 week belly shot:

I really don't notice much difference at all. I talked to my mom earlier this weekend and she said she always carried really small - she never wore maternity clothes until her 6th month! :shock: I have a feeling I may not be so lucky... we're both smaller framed, but she's definitely smaller and has more self-control with eating than I do. Smile

I'm really thankful we told the people at church. Al had to play prelude and on the anthem for all three services today, and I was feeling SO awful that I had to leave during the sermon at the first service... I'm glad people know that there are good reasons for 1) me not singing in the choir and 2) leaving in the middle of the service and not returning. We did teach our baby choir during the third service and thankfully I was feeling a bit better by then. Then we came home and slept the entire afternoon! :yawn:

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9 weeks, 3 days

I started throwing up last night and again this morning and again this afternoon... yuck. Last night was the worst. We had a tomato penne pasta and the cream sauce burned my stomach and esophagus on its way back up (sorry TMI). I was miserable with that burning feeling most of the night and when I vomited again this morning, I decided to stay home from work.

I'm finally feeling better for the first time today (at 6pm). I'm really starting to feel overwhelmed, though. I have a big performance in just over a month and I've only looked through the music once - and I didn't even read through the whole thing. It's one of Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsodies (some of you might remember Bugs Bunny playing it in a cartoon Lol and even though we're playing the four-hand arrangement, it's no small feat to play. And I'm playing the Primo part because the other person playing just had surgery on her hand. We're a mess, but her surgery definitely wins over my m/s.

I also have a lot to do with school - I need to write a syllabus and two weeks worth of lesson plans, and it should have been done today. I also need to record grades on a gradebook I still need to make up. Yikes.

This would all be quite manageable if I had energy and didn't feel so sick. But I look at all this on my plate and really fight panic. Al is always telling me my #1 priority right now is to grow a baby and everything else comes second. When I start to freak out, he just asks, 'what's your top priority right now?' It actually helps. Smile He's just the best.

Well, I'm definitely going to take advantage of this gift of good feelings and go practice!!

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10 weeks!

I can't believe I made it to 10 weeks! After Monday, the rest of the week has been much better as far as m/s goes. I'm so thankful there have only been a few queasy moments and it's usually because I need to eat.

Speaking of food, I'm so sick of it! I feel like I'm always hungry, always thinking about and in search of my next meal. Food has generally taken a backseat to the rest of my life, so I hate this high priority it's taking all of a sudden. I mean, I've always tried to be healthy but I've just never had to eat this much before just to not feel constantly hungry!

Anyway, I was sad to hear a few days ago that Kelly lost one of her triplets. :cry: And it scares me a little that I might lose this one and not know it. I'm trying so hard not to worry, not to think about it, that I'll be so relieved when we hear the heartbeat again in a few weeks. But now I know that this relief is only temporary. And the fact is that something can go wrong at any time, as we've been learning so painfully here on the boards lately. Sad I just have to trust that God ordains things exactly how they should be and if we aren't meant to have a baby from this pregnancy, it will be for a reason and it will eventually be okay.

Onto happier news: it's Friday! Yahoo

We're going to do some serious cleaning of our house this weekend. Between the m/s, lack of energy, and performances pressing on us, our house is in terrible shape and parts of it even smell bad to me. Yuck! I can't wait to be home full time and have the house the way I want it. Smile

One of my colleagues was telling me as we were walking to our cars last night that we're at the end of the first four weeks of school, and that we only have to do this 8 more times. Thinking of it from that perspective, reaching 10 weeks of pregnancy means that I only have to do 'this' 3 more times. Biggrin No problem, when you look at it that way. Smile

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Tater Tots: 1, Ruth: 0

I swear, I'm going to stop posting when I feel better, because I always seem to go back to m/s when I do. Sad

I know, I know, fast food is evil. I swear I normally stay away from it anyway, but I was STARVING and Sonic was right there and I didn't want to drive the extra mile to a healthier option. Big mistake. The pregnancy gods have been smiling upon me since Tuesday, but no longer.

The worst part is that I left school knowing it was going to come up, but desperately (and foolishly) hoping I'd make it the 30-minute drive home. Right. So 4 blocks later I pulled off onto a side street, but of course there was no bathroom, no friendly, cool toilet. Just a grocery bag. Ugh.

So the moral of the story: tater tots are bad. They're bad for you and they're bad in reverse. And my stomach is still unhappy with me, eight hours later. Learn, my friends, learn from my errors.

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This is my 10 week belly shot. I'm down 2 pounds again. Sad I think it was all the vomiting for the past two days... Hopefully everything is okay with the baby.

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10 weeks, 5 days

I am so tired today. Since I wake up at 5am, I try really hard to get to bed during the 9pm hour at night. I was in bed last night at 9 o'clock sharp, and yet I'm just exhausted today. I seem to fluctuate between nausea and exhaustion. I have to admit I'll take the exhaustion, even though it's hard to drag myself around.

It's been a roller coaster of a week so far. I had to leave during second period on Monday because I had a sudden wave of severe nausea. Of course, I got home and had a few dry heaves, ate and then was basically fine. :roll: So I'm trying to just fight through the nausea and keep working. I don't want to call in sick or leave early all the time. The mornings this week have really been the worst, though. I've tried everything... eating some crackers before I get out of bed, eating other foods, etc. They all lead to really icky feelings and I've vomited every morning this week so far. But if this means baby is getting big and strong, then it's all worth it.

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10 weeks, 6 days

Wow, what a rough morning. I ate a few saltines before I got out of bed, then went downstairs and started the oatmeal. I was SO thirsty, so I drank some water even though I knew my stomach wouldn't like it. Anyway, got in the shower and was SO happy that I didn't have any dry heaves for the first time this week!! Biggrin Oatmeal was done so I woke Al up and shared the good (no dry heaves) news with him.

Well, it all changed in a blink of an eye. I put the toppings on the oatmeal and suddenly didn't feel so good. We sat down to eat and Al got up to pour his coffee while I just sat there looking at the oatmeal. Then I started heaving and just barely made it to the toilet. No dry heaves, all the saltines and water came up. Sad But then I felt better so I sat back down to the oatmeal. Had a few bites of it and started feeling bad again. I should preface this next part by saying that we've had oatmeal every morning - without exception - since I got pregnant. We've had it just about every day for at least two years, probably longer. I've always been able to keep it down. Until today. Sad As soon as I threw up, I started crying because it just felt like such a defeat. I know that's silly, but blame my hormones. Lol

Here's the best part: my knight in shining armor heard me crying and came rushing into the bathroom while I was still over the toilet. He just rubbed my back and said it would all be okay, this was normal, etc.

I grew up hearing stories from my father about how my mother 'ruined' his breakfasts because she cooked for him and the smell would make her vomit. He always said it ruined his appetite hearing her puke. Well, whose fault is it that she was in that position? Grrr. :evil:

I don't know if it's a generational thing or if my dad was just a jerk (maybe a little both), but I'm thankful I have Al. Biggrin

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11 weeks!

I'm probably going to say this every week... but I can't believe I made it to 11 weeks! Biggrin

I'm really starting to feel better, thank goodness. I have vomited every morning this week, but once I get past the morning I feel good the rest of the day (knock on wood). I decided to skip the oatmeal this morning, but the cereal I ate came up instead. Oh well. At least I feel better now.

I popped out two days ago. The difference is amazing. I'll put the belly shot we took last night in the next post. I haven't weighed myself since Tuesday, probably, so I need to do that tonight...

We have PD day at school, and I'm playing hooky a little by coming back late after lunch. Wink I feel a little anti-social and would rather take a nap or veg at my computer... but TGIF!!!

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Here's the *nearly* 11 week belly shot:

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11 weeks, 6 days

Oops, almost the whole week went by without a post! Let's see... Monday was the very first day in nearly two weeks that I made it the whole day without puking! Yahoo I did vomit a little Tuesday and again yesterday morning, but I feel so, so, SO much better! If I'm still feeling better tomorrow, I might tentatively say the worst is over!!

The good news about feeling better is that I'm enjoying my job more. I'm still behind, and will probably stay that way, but that's life. The kids are learning and that's the most important thing.

I don't think I've gained any weight yet, it's fluctuated some but I think I'm right back to my pre-pg weight right now. I'm starting to catch little glimpses of my belly even in clothes, which scares me a little because I haven't told work yet. Thankfully, I doubt anyone has noticed except for me. Since I have a small frame, anyone who noticed my belly would probably think I've just been eating too much. Lol It's a good thing I'm at a new school, because I think my co-workers last year would notice for sure...

I think that's about it. Doctor's appointment Tuesday, in five days!!! I'm trying not to think about it, but of course I'm nervous they won't be able to find the heartbeat. But positive thoughts only around here! Biggrin

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12 weeks, 2 days

Here I am, on the final march of the first trimester. Yesterday was really tough on the m/s front. 'nuff said. I'm working on getting ready for church this morning, but at this point will be doing well just to get to our little baby choir. Darn it. I can't remember the last time I sang in the adult choir. Sad

So I consider the computer the halfway point between bed and doing something productive. I feel (usually) well enough to be out of bed, but not well enough to move around. Therefore, pg.org. Biggrin

So my mother offered yesterday to come out here for a few weeks to help out. I'm just so far behind in housework and everything. We eat out almost constantly because we don't have the time/energy to cook/shop. If I knew that our house was going to be cleaned and I wouldn't have to worry about our next meal, it would be bliss. At the same time, I'm worried I won't have any time/energy to spend with her. If I'm not working, I'm almost always sleeping or throwing up. Al is just as busy - his plate is almost overloaded this semester...

I guess this needs more thought...

Doctor's appointment in two days! Fingers crossed.

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Here are the 10, 11, 12 week belly shots for comparison. I'm thinking the 11 week shot was probably bloat. The 12 week shows more filling out (no wonder fewer of my clothes are fitting now!).

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one more pic, for fun (we just got a scanner yesterday). Biggrin Here's my eight week u/s pic. I don't know when I'll get another u/s, but hopefully there'll be a big difference!

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12 weeks, 4 days

Whew. Please tell me the worst is over. I threw up all day Sunday, starting around 2pm. Woke up in the middle of the night on Sunday night, laying on my stomach and completely drenched in sweat. I was so worried about our little one! Then I woke up Monday morning, went downstairs, vomited (very normal), and went back upstairs to get my gatorade. Coming down the stairs again, I slipped and fell a few stairs. Thankfully, they're carpeted and I landed on my tailbone (not too hard, either) so I didn't worry that much. It was just insult to injury, because I was already dehydrated and feeling so miserable. Poor Al. He gathered me up and took me to the couch and calmed me down.

After such a hard weekend, I didn't want to go to school but I had a performance that I could not miss (some board members were there). Anyway, during my lunch break I called my OB and asked about the sweating in the middle of the night. The nurse said not to worry about it, that the baby was well-protected. Then I mentioned the falling down the stairs and she told me to go to the ER to get an u/s and make sure everything was okay.

So I finally told work (under unusual circumstances) that I was pregnant. The head of the music dept was SO happy for me, and she had really bad m/s, too, so she's sympathetic. She offered to cover my afternoon classes for me, so off I went to the ER.

It was great to get some IV fluid, although my stomach really wanted to reject it - it just didn't know what to do with it since I didn't swallow it! I hate my stomach right now. The u/s went really well, and the technician was nice enough to give me a picture. I can't believe how active our little one is! Heart rate was 164, I think. The technician guessed girl, but said several times that it's really just too early to tell.

So I decided to take today off, and I'm so glad I did. I know I should be saving up my days for when the baby comes, but it's been such a hard stretch that I just needed some time to regroup. I was able to do our budget and I'm cleaning some, too! Yay!

Anyway, here's a pic of our surprise 12 week u/s:

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13 weeks!

I can't believe I made it to 13 weeks! BiggrinBiggrinBiggrin

Ever since I got those fluids at the ER on Monday, I have felt better. I haven't vomited since Monday morning, and only one or two slightly queasy moments all week. Yahoo I'm afraid to pronounce the m/s gone for good, but it's been a great week.

I won an auction on Ebay for 59 pieces of maternity clothes. Lots of shirts, pants, dresses, etc. I got it for $62, so everything was basically a dollar apiece. It arrived yesterday, but I didn't make it past about 20 items of clothing because the detergent this woman uses didn't sit well with me. So I'm going to wash everything before I examine it more closely. I just might be set for the whole pregnancy, except for a few small things. I hope so, anyway. It'd be great to spend our $$ on baby stuff rather than mat. clothes.

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13 weeks, 2 days

The m/s is back. SadSadSad I was SO hoping it would be gone for good. I just feel terrible. Aside from thankfully feeling well enough to judge a competition yesterday, this weekend has been a complete waste. Sigh. All fingers crossed that it departs again quickly!

We took a 13 week belly shot this morning (I know, two days late, what can you do? :lol:) and I'll try to post it later... Al has just been the greatest. He puts up with and supports me through a lot of tears, vomiting and gnashing of teeth. What a guy!

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14 weeks, 2 days

Oops, I missed a big post two days ago.... when I made it to the 2nd trimester!!!! Yahoo :woohoo: Yahoo :woohoo:

I'm a little excited. Lol

Aside from a few waves of nausea, I think it's been an entire week since I vomited. I really hope I can say that the worst is absolutely over and I couldn't be more thrilled!

There are just two issues right now: food and clothes. Food first. We tried to eat out Friday night, Saturday morning and Saturday afternoon. All three experiences were disasters in one form or other. The details are too boring, but the jist is that eating a meal in a restaurant doesn't make a lot of sense for me right now. I can go from feeling absolutely starved to more full than after Thanksgiving dinner in about 3 minutes. It's crazy. So we've decided I need to get back to cooking for our sanity (and budget!). I'm going to recruit my mom to help me plan meals from a distance. She's dying to help in some way and she LOVES stuff like this. I think it's going to work out really well.

I'm in that terrible in-between stage with clothes. Almost none of my regular clothes fit anymore. If I can rubber band them or alter them in some way to make it work, they're just not comfortable. And they make interesting little bulges around my belly that make me look like I have an alien in there or something. Smile Normally, I wouldn't care, but so many people keep inspecting my belly - it's never gotten this much attention before! Lol Maternity clothes - most of them - just hang off me. I'm trying to do maternity pants with regular tops and that seems to be working pretty well. My BIL gets married in less than a week and I have NO clue what to wear to the wedding. I have a nice black dress that would have worked, but Al is the best man and my BIL chose a terrible brown suit for the groomsmen to wear. We can't put a black dress on me and a brown suit on Al - we wouldn't be able to be next to each other all night. Lol Oh well, at least I have a few days to find something...

So happy to be feeling better! I (almost) feel like a new woman! Biggrin

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14 weeks, 4 days

We finally took my 14 week belly shot tonight, now that I'm actually closer to 15 weeks. Biggrin Oh well. Better late than never.

Man, my butt is ginormous!! Much bigger than my belly. It took some doing to get the right picture because Al can't make my butt smaller. Lol So here is the result of attempt #5 (I'm sucking it all in as much as possible):

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14 weeks, 6 days

15 weeks tomorrow! Yahoo

My students are taking midterms right now and I'm just disgusted with all the cheating going on. I had a student hand me her test, then she did the playing portion and I glanced through her test while she played. She had forgotten to write the honor code statement on her test so I handed it back to her and somehow she found the correct answers and changed her test! All while she was supposed to be writing about honor and not cheating. :roll:

Another student wrote answers on his desk. The funny part is that I moved him to a different desk right before I handed the test to him. Lol But what a mess now... do I nail him on 'intent to cheat?'

Wiser people than me should be teachers. I'm so ready to move on to the next phase and away from these crazy people.

Feeling pretty good on the pregnancy front. Eating enough food continues to be a big challenge. I feel like I barely eat enough to be satisfied and then I'm hungry pretty soon again. I normally eat within about 10 minutes of waking up, but was in a hurry to pack this morning so I decided to wait a little longer. BIG mistake. I got a little tickle in my throat, so I coughed but immediately start dry heaving. It was scary because I've never had that happen before! Learned my lesson, that's for sure.

So we're off to Cincinnati for Al's brother's wedding this weekend. We leave after school today - three day weekend for us!! Yay! Biggrin

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15 weeks, 6 days

Ooops. 16 weeks tomorrow!

I can't believe I let a whole week go by without an update. Bad mommy!

Let's see... BIL David's wedding was Saturday. I'll post a pic from that later. The m/s made a nasty comeback a few days ago, but mostly in the mornings. Yesterday I finally made this breakfast shake (my mom sent me the recipe a while ago) and it was SO good! It also made me feel good! No pukey, thank goodness! As long as I eat regularly, I'm okay now.

I called my OB today to mention some mild cramping I've been having. The nurse said it was probably just my uterus stretching (I agree) but then called back 10 minutes later and told me to get an u/s today! :shock: I was really surprised and a little disappointed because we have parent/teacher conferences today and I didn't want to get into any hot water with the administration.

Long story short, my pessimism certainly came back to haunt me because the u/s technician refused to tell me or show me anything. Big time bummer. Before she moved the monitor so she could see better (and further out of my sight) I did catch the heart beating. Later, she said, 'hold still, little one.' Biggrin So I'm hoping everything is okay. I should find out tomorrow (I hope).

Well, I'm skipping choir tonight and will be heading for bed shortly. I'm so tired, I just can't think straight. Very, very long day. Maybe I'll make another shake before bed. Wink

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16 weeks, 1 day

New belly shot for your viewing pleasure. I think it looks like I have a beer belly. Lol

And the u/s shot from Thursday. Since the tech didn't tell me anything, I'm just guessing the baby's head is on the right and he/she has his/her back towards us...

Forgot to mention that the u/s report showed my placenta is still partially covering the cervix. I read in my What to Expect... book and it says that there's still a good chance it could move up out of the way. Otherwise, it could mean bedrest and a c-section. Sad Need to start praying that placenta gets the heck off my cervix!

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Here's a shot from BIL's wedding, taken at 15 weeks. Aside from BIL tripping down some stairs 1 hour before the rehearsal and needing several stitches in his big toe, the wedding passed off without a hitch and they're happily married now. Smile

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16 weeks, 3 days

Grrr. I just typed this whole post and it didn't post and now it's gone. :evil:

Well, in a nutshell... I'm a little worried. Menstrual-like cramps are getting worse, not completely mild anymore. I do have a check-up today so hopefully she'll be able to reassure me that everything is all right.

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16 weeks, 4 days

I had a great check-up yesterday! Biggrin I just love my OB - she's the best. Just the right mixture of compassion, empathy and humor.

So the nurse let us hear the heartbeat on the doppler for a long time (she was also able to pick it up right away, which was exciting). We started hearing these static or interference noises, which she explained was the baby moving. She said next time we come, I'll feel the movement along with those crackles. She said we had a really active one, and Al joked that our kid has ADHD already. Smile

The cramping got worse yesterday afternoon again, so she did a pelvic exam and my cervix is fully closed. Yay! So between the u/s and the exam, she decided these cramps are just my uterus growing and my body adjusting to being pregnant.

The other good news is that even though my placenta is low, it's not 'previa' (not sure what the difference is exactly) and the important part is that she's not concerned about it at all. Looks like no bedrest for me! Yahoo

The other good news (I told you this was a great visit!) is that we finally got more info about the brain tumor that Al's sister was born with. Apparently there's no genetic component to it, so there's nothing to worry about there (thank God).

I'll be getting a call today letting me know when our big u/s is. We requested the Monday or Tuesday before Thanksgiving. I really hope we get to find out the sex before Thanksgiving (and Al's birthday, which is the day before Thanksgiving this year). Just three weeks away!!!!

Well, that's about all the good news I think I can handle for one day. Biggrin

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16 weeks, 5 days

Wow, this pregnancy is really clipping along at quite a pace, especially now that I'm not sick anymore!

My dad is in town on business this week and he's staying with us. The first words out of his mouth when he saw me was, 'so how's the fat lady doing?' :violent2:

First of all, I'm not fat, I'm PREGNANT. And I've only gained around 5 pounds and I wasn't fat before. Grrr. I know he didn't mean to be offensive, but he made me so mad.

Anyway, whatever. He put a bunch of baby stuff on the table this morning that my mom got for me. On each item, she wrote how far along I was in the pregnancy when she bought it (9 weeks, etc.). My mom is SO thoughtful, it really made my day.

We have a bit of a dilemma with the big u/s coming up. We were really hoping to do it before Thanksgiving so we could tell Al's family in person. But Al doesn't want to take any time off work so we can both save our PTO hours for when the baby comes. And we genetic screening decisions to make, too. It's overwhelming.

I'll update more later - I can't think about it all right now.

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16 weeks, 6 days

17 weeks tomorrow! :woohoo:

Last night was rough. Al went to bed early, not feeling well. When I joined him (about 30 minutes later :lol:) he was completely on my side of the bed. Our KING-sized bed. He wouldn't move for anything and I can't sleep on his side. Then I had to get up to pee THREE times!!! :shock: Craziness! On one of my bathroom trips, I had to wrestle my body pillow back from Al when I came back to bed.

THEN, Al rolled over and totally knee-ed me in the stomach around 4:30am. :evil: If he had done it any harder, I would have made him take me to the ER. I know he's a really deep sleeper and this isn't the first time he's done pseudo-violent things to me. Somehow, I usually magically wake up in time to divert an elbow to the face, etc. Not lately, though. A month or two ago, he nailed me in the mouth. It's a good thing he's so nice when he's awake. :roll:

After some discussion, we decided against the genetic testing. Even if the u/s shows something, what exactly would we do to 'prepare' ahead of time, anyway? We have some friends with Down's kids, and I don't really see what difference it would make to talk to them before the birth or after. I'm low-risk for all that, anyway, so we're just going for the regular u/s. Three weeks from yesterday!!!! Yahoo

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17 weeks

Yahoo 17 weeks today! Yahoo

So thankful today. One of my students came up to me in the hall before class and pulled my clothes back tight so she could see my belly. Then she said, 'there's a baby with a heartbeat growing in there!' Biggrin I thought I'd feel invaded with people touching my belly, but it's kind of sweet (right now). It'll probably get old. Smile

TGIF!!! I love that Fridays are Fridays, and that I start a new week on Fridays! It's going to be a great weekend, too. My dad left this morning, and other than Al judging a competition tomorrow morning and me playing prelude Sunday morning, we have no plans. Hopefully we can get some stuff done around the house and just relax. It's been a hectic week.

I hope I start feeling the baby move soon. I had a dream last night that the baby was going crazy in my belly, and when I woke up I wasn't completely sure I had been dreaming or not. I think I was, though, because I'm really just imagining what it feels like - I have no clue.

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17 weeks, 2 days

It's been a nice (but too short!) weekend. Prelude went fine this morning, except for after the first service. I was nervous and as soon as I finished playing, I started to feel nauseas and crampy and breathless. Thankfully, Al was there and we sat for several minutes in the lobby area while he helped me relax. I think pregnancy and nerves don't go well together. Smile The next two services were much better, since I knew what to expect and was able to force myself to relax while I was playing.

I'm still cramping a lot, but I think I know possibly one of the 'triggers' now. Between ballet and piano, I've always held my stomach in to keep my core strong. I catch myself doing that ALL the time, especially as my belly is starting to really expand. It's such a habit, though, that I am constantly having to tell myself to let it go. I've had to do it three times just typing this paragraph! :shock: My guess is that even though my stomach muscles are strong, my uterus probably doesn't like the pressure??

Feeling lazy today. Even though the extra hour of sleep is nice, I really hate daylight savings. It's been dark since before 5pm. Sad That makes me think it's time for bed and I just don't feel like doing any work at all. Al's puttering around in the kitchen, though, so I think I'll join him and scrounge up something for dinner. And relax my stomach. Lol

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17 weeks, 3 days

M/s made a nasty reappearance this morning. I really haven't felt all that wonderful since last night, then my magic breakfast shake came back up this morning. SadSadSad I cried like a baby, I was so disappointed. Now I don't know what to eat in the mornings. I may try the shake one more time, we'll see. It may have just been a fluke.

In other news, I might possibly maybe felt the baby move this morning. I ended up taking the day off from school and Al went in late because I was such a mess. We were laying on our bed and I felt these twitches on the right side of my abdomen. I was afraid to even breathe! I'm not sure that was it, but later, I felt several little flutters more centralized. Actually pretty near where the nurse put the doppler last week at my appt. I'm not convinced that was it, but I wanted to record it for prosperity's sake. Lol Just in case. I can't wait for Al to be able to feel them!

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17 week belly shot and also 11 week shot for comparison. Can you tell which one is which? :confused: (answer below)

the first is the 17 week picture. I'm guessing (hoping) that the 11 week picture is mostly bloat. One more thing to worry about. :roll:

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18 weeks

Holy cow! 18 weeks!! :eek:

Aside from noticing that I had actually lost a pound yesterday morning, this week has been fairly uneventful in the land of pregnancy. I called my OB (God help her!) and the nurse said it's perfectly fine to fluctuate and that what really matters is that the baby is growing. Apparently they'll start measuring the baby at 20 weeks (my next appointment).

We're having our house exterminated today, so we're staying in a hotel tonight. Yay! I love hotels! This one has an indoor pool and hot tub (which I will only sit in for a few minutes). We're really looking forward to it. Al can't wait to watch cable. Lol

Our big u/s is coming up soon! I'm so excited!!

Still not showing too much, although if my clothes are a little tight people can tell. If I wear a loose shirt, though, no one can tell. It's weird. I feel like I have one of the smallest bellies on my board, but I don't care as long as our baby is okay. There are some advantages to carrying small, too. It's nice to bend over and I can still sit in virtually any position I want (although I can see that sitting with a leg pulled up to my chest is going to be a lost cause pretty soon :lol:).

So now that I'm not sick anymore, I'm determined to find the energy to walk on our treadmill for at least 10-15 minutes a day before I get all achy and really not want to. It's just hard because I work all day, teach lessons at night, and I'm just exhausted. We had a 2 hour choir rehearsal last night and it got out 30 minutes after I usually go to bed! And this was after going pretty hard all day. I was completely wiped out. No way can I exercise in that condition - makes no sense. So I'm hoping for a break in my schedule sometime, somehow. I'll keep working at it...

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18 weeks, 1 day

This is the life!! I'm laying on the most comfortable hotel bed ever with no fewer than four soft pillows behind me and the laptop in my lap and the TV on. I have a cup of decaf next to me and two muffins just waiting for when I get hungry again. BiggrinBiggrinBiggrin

Al had a rehearsal at 8am but is on his way back now. We're going to attempt to DTD for the second time this pregnancy Lol and then go for a swim. What a perfect day! It's amazing how little it takes sometimes.

The best part is we have Monday off school for Veterans Day!! Yahoo The teachers were all smiles as we were leaving yesterday. Biggrin Funny, I don't remember my teachers being so excited about breaks, etc., when I was growing up. Although I will say that my classes never had remotely the level of behavior problems that we deal with every day. That's exhausting.

I keep feeling what might be little movements, but I guess it'll just be a while before I know for sure.

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18 weeks, 4 days

I have a heavy heart today. My sister called me last night to tell me that she's divorcing her husband of 17 years. This has been coming for a while, but it still seems like a pretty drastic step to me. Unfortunately, I haven't lived in the same city as my sister since before she even got married, so it's hard to think that her DH is as bad as she makes him out to be. She's also 10 years older than I am, too, so there's always been a big gap between us. Anyway, she has claimed that he is verbally abusive and he made some kind of threat to her on Saturday so she's decided she's had enough. I want to believe her, but my heart tells me that they're both in the wrong and that they can work this out. I'm just not a quickie divorce kind of person. It's one thing if there's unfaithfulness or abuse, but I just don't think this is the case for them.

I'm the only one in my family who thinks David is a good guy. But I was also the only one in my family who *knew* my dad was having an affair, and I was right. It's hard to hear everyone slamming David all the time, and they've been doing it for years. My parents told my sister that the only mistake she's made in this marriage was marrying David in the first place. I can't believe they would say that! No one is perfect and Debbie has made plenty of mistakes. Besides, they're going to be eating their words if she gets back together with him. I value my parents' wisdom, but I really think they're wrong here. They've never liked David and they are blind to Debbie's faults. The reality is that David and Debbie are actually good for each other, but they just get under each other's skin. I really think some counseling would do them some good.

Al and I went to Ruth's Chris last night to celebrate his birthday (one of the best meals I've ever had, too!!) and we talked about our marriage some, too. I can't believe we've been married for 5 1/2 years and still get along so well. Our marriage feels really natural and easy almost all the time. Al joked that God knew how stubborn we both are so He made us really similar so we wouldn't spend our entire lives fighting. Biggrin He's probably right.

Not much news on the baby front. Still feeling 'things' down there but not convinced they're kicks yet. The sweater I'm wearing today really makes me look pregnant. Most of my students have commented that I'm finally poking out. Biggrin

A week from tomorrow we find out the sex!!!!! Yahoo

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18 weeks, 5 days

Oops, I just realized we forgot to take an 18 week belly shot. I guess we'll just have to wait for 19 weeks at this point, since it's just two days away. Oh well. We've been really good about taking pictures so far.

A butterfly flew across my belly last night! BiggrinBiggrinBiggrin I've never felt anything like it in my life so I'm calling it my first official kick. Or whatever. I was trying to imagine what the baby might be doing to make me feel like that, but I'm stumped.

Darn, the bell just rang. Oh well, that was the big news for the day anyway. Hopefully there'll be more movement to report tomorrow. Biggrin

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19 weeks

19 weeks! Yahoo

We go in for the big u/s in 5 days and I'm so excited! I've been feeling more movements, still light but definitely not my intestines. Smile I'm pretty sure the baby kicked Al twice this morning as I was snuggled next to him before we got up. Biggrin It was way too light for him to feel, though.

I feel funky and a little 'off' tonight. Whenever I feel weird, I have a mild panic wondering if this is going to be the new 'normal' for me. I really hope not. These past few weeks have felt almost like pre-pg normal and I'm not anxious to feel bad again.

I will say I feel like I'm done growing. Lol We just took my belly shot for the week and I'm HUGE!! :shock: We walked to a local restaurant for dinner tonight and I could actually feel the weight of my belly for the first time ever and I'm not thrilled about where this is all leading. I must have been crazy to wish that I was showing!!! If I don't get any bigger, I'll be really happy. Biggrin And I'm not even to the halfway point yet. :roll: That's okay, it'll all be worth it and I hope this just means our little one is healthy and safe and growing.

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19 weeks, 4 days

The big u/s is tomorrow!! Yahoo I really hope our baby cooperates and shows us what he or she is!

Today is also the last day of the week for students!! So nice to end the week on a Tuesday! BiggrinBiggrinBiggrin We have a PD day tomorrow and then the u/s and then the drive to Cinci for Thanksgiving. Busy day.

Last weekend was packed and I'm still really tired from it. More about all that later...

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19 weeks, 6 days

Happy Thanksgiving!!

I managed to sleep almost the entire 6 hour drive here last night, so Al is still sleeping and so is his mom. We didn't get in until almost 3am but then stayed up another hour or so talking. I'm so programmed to get up at 5am, however, that I was up and wide awake at 8am. :roll: So I'm just chilling on the computer until everyone else wakes up.

Our u/s yesterday was just amazing, on so many levels. We are having a healthy little girl!! Linda Noelle will be her name and we'll call her Noelle. She's just too cute! We saw all four chambers of the heart, stomach, liver, kidneys, brain. The tech measured her arms and legs and head. They estimate that she weighs 11 oz. It was so amazing! There were three really memorable moments: 1) the well-aimed kick at the wall of the uterus (which I felt!), 2) the shot of her hand moving up to her mouth, and 3) our little acrobat bent in double with her legs over her face. Lol All three of us laughed at that position (see pic below).

I think what might be better than that, though, is that Al is now totally in love with our little girl. He was just amazed at the detail of the u/s and he said after it was over that it was his first 'dad' moment. And now he's being really fussy about me and Noelle [did you take your prenatal yet? Noelle wants a snack :lol:, be extra careful on those stairs, you need to have a blueberry shake every day so Noelle will be really smart]. It's really cute. He's going to be such a wonderful dad! I can't wait! He also said that going to the u/s and seeing our baby was the best birthday present ever. My heart melted so many times yesterday. Thank goodness my 'crying' hormones are finally getting under control or I would have been a blubbering idiot all day. Smile

Well, I've been up for over an hour and Noelle and I are getting pretty darn hungry! No one should be hungry (for long) on Thanksgiving!!

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20 weeks!!

20 weeks today! Yahoo I can't believe I'm halfway there. Biggrin

Yesterday ended up being not so great, unfortunately. It all had to do with food. As I had mentioned, I was up before everybody so I had to wait a long time for breakfast. I was hoping Al and I could slip out and get something, but my MIL offered to make us pancakes. That was great, but I swear I had at least 10 of them and I was STILL hungry! I also ate some bagel crisp things.

Anyway, we went downstairs to watch TV and hang out for a while, and both Al and MIL fell asleep AGAIN! I played on the computer some more and tried to sleep, too, with no luck. The trouble was that we had breakfast around 10-ish and didn't get served any food at dinner until 6pm! I can't go for 8 hours without food ever, but especially not now!!! I felt horrible before we even got to the restaurant and it was just too late by the time food arrived. My MIL doesn't have much food around the house (she eats out, mostly) but looking back, I should have just gone somewhere by myself to get something in the afternoon. Oh well. But today is NOT going to be a repeat! I was a mess for the rest of the night last night.

The bright side is that it's SNOWING!!! The first fall of the season. BiggrinBiggrin

Off to wake up Al and get something to EAT!

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