A blog about babies: the babies I lost, the babies I never had, the baby who made me a Mama.

Friday, August 26, 2011

The Brooklyn Beat; or, Odds and Ends

Since lovely Irene is sweeping through town tomorrow, I should probably post something so everyone knows I made it back from California just in time for an earthquake and a hurricane. I'd been holding out for a longer post with lots of news, but I've been too overwhelmed with preparing for my qualifying exam (in two weeks exactly) to write anything substantial. So, in sum:

-- Napa with Lawyer Guy was incredible: gorgeous scenery, great food, relaxing hotel. I even got a prenatal massage, and lying on my tummy (propped up with special belly-craddling pillows) was utter bliss.

-- I did have one massive freak-out our last night and day in Napa when Smudgie decided to play coy with me and not move. Naughty baby. Scared the hell out of me. Now he/she is back to tap dancing.

-- My sister's wedding was utterly beautiful (I may post some shots of the reception site so you can see how gorgeous it was--outside on a bluff overlooking green, vine-covered hills). I had tons of fun dancing and didn't even mind not being able to drink. (Okay, true confession: I had half a glass of wine and felt like falling asleep. Then the waitress topped off my glass without checking with me first, I got nervous about losing track of my consumption, and stopped drinking altogether).

-- Plane ride with LG is much better than without. Plane ride with LG + wumping Smudgie is best of all.

--Smudgie looked great at the 33-week appointment. He/she is about 4.5 lbs and right around 30% for size, which my docs think is fine. The MFM estimated I'll deliver a 6.5-7 lb baby, which sounds pretty normal to me and I'm totally cool with that. I'm feeling really good, with lots of energy despite not sleeping well and very few aches and pains.

-- I scheduled all of my remaining Ob appointments, growth scans, and biophysical profiles for the remainder of the pregnancy. That was pretty intense, though it's good to have it all on the calendar.

-- I thought my old, small apartment building was in the early stages of collapsing during the earthquake last Tuesday. The thought of a natural disaster never occurred to me. I grabbed Bella and hightailed it to the street.

-- My studying just keeps getting derailed by natural disasters. I spent all day tracking Irene's progress, debating whether to decamp to my mother-in-law's in the suburbs (for now we're staying put), and stocking up on water and non-perishables. Doesn't leave much time for studying Walter Scott. I'm so going to fail.

-- Studying has also been derailed by the beginnings of setting up our nursery. We put down the rug and set up the glider, crib, and dresser this week. I managed to not hyperventilate and it's already my favorite room in the apartment, though I still get overwhelmed and nervous when I think about it too much (then I just shut the door and go back to real life). I really hope it's not destroyed by torrents of rain or a roof collapse tomorrow night.

-- I have nursery shots and a belly pic, but don't have the time or mental space to add them.

-- My shower is next Sunday out on the Jersey shore. I hope the hurricane damage is cleaned up by then (can you tell that this freaking hurricane derailing my last few weeks of pregnancy is really pissing me off? Because obviously it's all about me).

--- Hurricane also led to the cancellation of our birth education class at our hospital tomorrow. We've been rescheduled for two weeks later. 36 weeks isn't too late to learn about this stuff, right?

-- I'm 34 weeks today. Six weeks to go. Wow.

-- I reaaaaally need all four weeks between my exam (the day I turn 36 weeks) and my due date in order to prep. I have done NOTHING--nothing's washed, nothing's finished, we've bought barely anything. I desperately need to focus on school that last week after my shower, so I can't even start to take stock of what we still need until after 36 weeks. I'm probably the only woman alive who wouldn't mind being overdue. But just a little.

-- I am grateful grateful grateful every day for this sweet, squirmy baby inside me. I love him or her so much.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

San Diego Sunshine; or, California Recap...So Far

My Californian peregrinations continue with a 6-day stay at my BFF Doctor Lady's home down south. I'm once again wireless-enabled and checking in with my beloved blogs and tweeps whenever I can, but I'm also in a serious time-crunch with reading and paper writing prior to my exam in early September, so blogging and twitter are of necessity on the back burner.

The conference was incredible. It was also incredibly exhausting. It's an annual conference that brings together academics, funded graduate student participants (so my conference fees, room & board, and meals were all paid for by my institution), high-school teachers, college students, and members of the public with an interest in the figure whose work is discussed. Over the 9 days I was there, I attended 21 lectures, 12 of them 1-hr long keynote lectures. I participated in a writing workshop every morning at 8:30 and had a seminar with fellow grad students every afternoon. I attended a party with grad students and faculty every night that started at 9 and went to the famed ? of "crazy" birthday party invitations (I usually lasted until about 11:30). I spoke about my "project" more times that I can count and met some incredible fellow-students working in my field whom I hope I can encounter at future conferences and gatherings.

It was academically enriching, professionally fulfilling, and lots and lots of fun. I'm so glad I didn't let my fears keep me from going. But I also ran myself a bit ragged. I'm not good at saying no to things. About half-way through the week, I woke one morning to see a sudden shower of metallic spots filling my vision. I thought lightning bugs had infested my room until they disappeared after 20-30 seconds or so. After some frightened googling and a self-diagnosis of pre-eclampsia, I called my doctors' emergency number that evening after hours and was told it was most likely morning low-blood pressure and to keep an eye on things but not worry too much. I think my body was sending me a definite signal that it was time to slow down.

I'm resting a lot down at Doctor Lady's: reading on the couch while she and her husband are at the hospital for work and her adorable little boy (who has a total crush on me) is at day care; cooking easy dinners for them all each night to earn my keep; trying to sleep in and nap as I feel like it. It's wonderful to see her for an extended amount of time. But I am also so very happy that on Friday morning, Lawyer Guy and I will be reuniting at the San Francisco airport and heading up to Napa for some much-needed alone time before the wedding.

Wish me luck on the flight--my last solo journey before LG is with me again. They've been hard, but I think I'm coping okay. Smudgie kicks up a storm and I focus on those precious movements and that seems to get me through.