Friday, August 26, 2011

When I See You Smile

Yesterday was our final ultrasound and my IM was there to see her sweet baby on the screen. Her face was priceless. I hope she does not mind me blogging about her reaction, but I think it's so critical to explaining why surrogacy was for me.

I try to keep her updated through weekly emails with her baby's progress, through pictures, phone calls, emails, texts, anything I can think of to tell her how her baby is growing. Sometimes I get to talk to IF too, but this is all so new to him that I think it feels a bit "make-believe" as it did for my husband with our first. When IF got to feel her move and as he's seen things brought into the house, I think it's being more and more real for him. None of those updates can compare to watching your child on a screen. I think that was such a powerful moment for my IM. She already adores this little girl so much, but I think seeing her sweet puckered lips and her full cheeks on that screen makes it easier for her to imagine bringing her home.

We also ran around the hospital a bit and got her familiar with where I will be delivering and where to go when the big day comes. She will be the petite blonde flying through the halls followed by a tall, dark-headed man yelling, "E, wait!!"

Every ultrasound with this pregnancy has been amazing and special for me, but yesterday, my eyes were locked on my IM's face while hers were focused on that screen, absorbing every detail. We got an estimate that the baby weighs around 4 lbs., 4 oz. right now. She's got full cheeks and likes to suck her thumbs. Her hands stayed around her face almost the entire ultrasound. She also likes to breathe. The tech said not all babies do that at this point and some only do it for spurts, but Baby L is a breather! I hope that means her lungs are getting lots of practice (remember, I am not the one having to wake up to those squeals at night!) E sat there and cried happy tears and thanked me, repeatedly, for my role in this. I thanked her for the privilege and we both had a good moment of it hitting us that we have really done it. We're almost to the end and then their journey can begin.

Here's my latest belly shot. Really starting to fill out these shirts here lately! Oh, the update from my OB appointment: I am measuring at 32 weeks, which is great. (Little tidbit for those that aren't "in the know" but your belly should measure, in cms, according to your week. So, if you're 31 weeks, your belly should measure about 31 cms.) I've lost a pound, which is okay b/c it's due to the changes in my eating habits. We're not trying to put me on a restrictive diet or anything, just changing what's going in and making bites count. :)

Friday, August 12, 2011

Sweet Caroline

Just call me Caroline because I'm a little too sweet for my own good. My glucose test came back with borderline numbers so I've got to take it easy on the carbs, the sugars and up the protein. I also need to start exercising. This would not be such sucky news except that I've been on exercise restriction this whole pregnancy and now, I'm 6 months pregnant and it's super hot in August and I cancelled my gym membership that I wasn't going to be able to use in the forseeable future. Alas, I will not be discouraged. I've got some pregnancy yoga videos and I can walk on the treadmill at home. My family will just have to leave me alone for an hour or so...hey, that might not be so bad! I am also anemic so I'll be adding Iron, twice a day, to my regimen of prenatals and Calcium (my mom has Osteoporosis so I have to take precautions since sweet little babies suck out all your nutrients!) That might be why I've been tired lately. I just chalked it up to working FT, running after 3 little ones and being pregnant in the summer. Who knew there was an excuse to my laziness! :)

Anyway, if you're a long-time lurker, first time commenter, get to it. How sweet it is to be loved by you. (I just had to throw that in!)

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Sugar, Oh Honey, Honey

Hey everyone, it's me again! Back so soon? It's just that kind of a week. I haven't gotten results back from my glucose test but usually, no news is good news. I did have an OB check-up on Tuesday and everything's going well. I'm measuring right at 29 weeks like I should be so that's great. We did, finally, go over the results of the ultrasound I had back in June after the wreck. At that ultrasound, my placenta was low-lying. I've talked to a bunch of women that have had this and it almost always corrects itself as the uterus grows and the placenta moves away from the cervix. (Feel like you're in Biology class again?) If it doesn't, then we'll need to do a c-section as the placenta can cause a lot of bleeding if it's torn. No bueno. So, we are doing another ultrasound to check its position and be sure it's moved. The bonus is, E and maybe J, will get to come in for that ultrasound!! YAY! They have not been able to be at any of them and that bummed me out a little. I videoed some of them and put them on speaker with the others, but it's not the same as being live! I'm thrilled that they'll get this opportunity and optimistic about the placenta issue so no worries there.

So, that's my update for the week! I'll post a belly shot as soon as I get some make-up on and my hair tamed. This heat has been brutal and I feel like I'm always sweating. Ick!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Oh what a beautiful morning...

On Wednesday, we will be 29 weeks pregnant. The time really has flown by and I almost don't notice it until I realize it's time for another belly shot. My family and I are going to visit my IPs this weekend. I'm so excited about this trip because they will get to feel Baby L move!!! I sent IM a video of my stomach, but it's kind of hard to see, so I can't wait for her and IF to be able to see their daughter's movements and to be able to feel her dance around in her little home away from home.

I'm also excited to see how baby L responds to their voices. We've been doing the Belly Buds for a few weeks now and I love to tell E&J how their baby responds. I think E's voice is soothing to her and she tends to kick and move in a more fluid motion when listening to the books her mom's recorded for her. When J's recording comes on, she gets a little livelier and her jabs are a little more excited. Maybe she already knows it's "fun daddy" time?? Either way, I hope to help reinforce that bond between her parents and her with the sounds of their voices. I have to remind my husband and children that it's "quiet time" when I'm playing the recordings to her so she can just focus on E&J's voices. Secretly, I like this time too b/c it allows me to read or just rest for about an hour without interruption! I ALMOST miss the PIO injections b/c I got an hour to myself on the heating pad after injecting...never thought I would say that.

So, we'll hit the road on Saturday morning and spend the day with my IPs. Sunday, we'll head back sometime around noon. My old co-worker's wife just had a baby so I want to snuggle up on him before we head home. He was 9 lbs., 13 oz. Ouch. The "biggest" baby I've ever had was 7lbs., 15 oz. and although she was my easiest delivery (they all were pretty easy), I can't imagine pushing another 2 lbs. out of there. So, baby L, if you're taking notes, grow nice and big and strong, but I wouldn't mind if you were kind of petite like your mama. ;)

Tomorrow, I have my 3 hour glucose tolerance test. I had some slightly elevated levels with my first daughter and had gestational diabetes. I learned a lot from that pregnancy and haven't had any issues with GD since then, but darn if I don't always fail the 1 hour test. So, I asked my OB if I could just skip right to the 3 hr test and she said that made sense. For those that are unfamiliar, this is a routine test where you drink something like flat orange soda or coke. You chug it within 10 mins., try not to throw it up and then you wait as your body freaks out about the amount of sugar you just scarfed down on an empty belly. Oh yes, you have to fast my dears. They draw your blood at the beginning and then three more times on the hour. I'm loading up on water today b/c it sucks if you're slightly dehyrated and they have to go hunting for veins. I usually pass the time reading a book or something. At the end of the test, I head over and scarf as much protein as I can and go on about my merry way. My IM might be joining me for this appointment if she can get away. She's been busy with the new house and getting some classes out of the way that she needs to take. (I don't think there will be as much time for that after the baby. I think she knows this all too well!) So, I've also made plans to eat lunch with a friend in case IM can't make it.

That's really all that's going on here. It's hot. Like, super hot and humid and I sweat just getting into the car hot. I've gained 20 lbs. and I wasn't Olive Oil to begin with so I feel like I'm in a fat suit, in summer. So, if you see me walking around and I'm huffing and puffing, don't pay me much mind, I'm just gestating a human. :)