Wednesday, August 27, 2008

happiness is...

finding all of the "kittle kittle cahs" lined up on your kitchen floor.

Monday, August 25, 2008

maybe i need more chocolate

My patience is seriously lacking these days. I hate to admit it, but I find it terribly hard to deal with a toddler while pregnant. Some days things are fabulous- Gabe is easy and sweet and compliant, and then other days, like today, I want to lock myself in the bathroom and scream.

We walked to the park that is over a mile away because it's his favorite, which was probably a HUGE mistake because I almost melted from the heat and humidity. On the way, we stopped at one of my favorite coffee shops. They have multiple little bead maze toys at the coffee shop, so I unstrapped Gabe to let him play while I ordered. Big mistake. Within 30 seconds, he was running around the cafe like a madman and ignoring the bead mazes completely. In the meantime, 3 other children who were around the same age sat around quietly with their mothers/caregivers and played nicely at the tables. I sat at the table to get him to calm down and in his haste to get away, he knocked over my full iced coffee onto me and all over the floor and then took off across the coffee shop again.

It took all my mental fortitude to keep it together as I'm chasing him around and then getting down on my hands and knees and wiping up the coffee. It didn't help that the workers at the coffee shop were totally unsympathetic and pretty unfriendly to me when I told them about the coffee spillage.

We left shortly thereafter and headed over to the playground, where we played nicely for 20 minutes before slipping off of a rocker and getting a bloody lip. Back to the house we went, kicking myself for not thinking through this heat and humidity thing. We arrived and I got distracted answering an email for a minute or so, until I heard water running in the kitchen. Gabe had dragged a chair over to the kitchen sink, turned on the water, taken the sprayer and SPRAYED THE WHOLE KITCHEN DOWN. We're talking some serious flooding. And I felt that I couldn't even get that mad, because I'm the one that wasn't supervising him in the first place! It was so much water, I had to run to the basement and grab all our beach towels to mop up the mess, and I'm still finding piles of hidden water everywhere. Inside drawers, under the sink, under the stove.

It's moments like these that make it so hard for me to hold it together. Before being pregnant, I would laugh it off in most circumstances, but these days, I either get furiously angry or break down in tears. I've never wanted to spank Gabe before, but these days I find myself wanting to give him a smack on the hand or a swat on the behind. I find myself yelling more too, and this just isn't the environment I want him to be in. I certainly think there is a time and place for me to raise my voice, but lately it is happening more and more often.

I hate myself for being this tired, this impatient, this frustrated, but it isn't something I'm doing intentionally. I'm doing my best to hold it together, and there are just days when it feels almost impossible.

Tell me this is a typical pregnancy thing. Tell me it's going to get better once this baby comes. Or at least will I learn to cope with the frustration?


In other happier news, today marks 6 years from the date Josh and I walked down the aisle together. I'd do it again in an instant. He is my best friend, my confidante, my sanity keeper, and everything else in between. On the one hand, we cannot possibly have been married for 6 years already, and on the other hand, it feels like we've always been together.

I am so unbelievably, impossibly, shockingly lucky to call him my husband. I don't know what I did to deserve him.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

in the slow lane

The placenta hasn't moved.

Our ultrasound was yesterday, and I'm undeniably upset. The good news is that it is no longer a complete previa, but the placenta is still covering part of the cervix and I've been put on pelvic rest until the next ultrasound (September 23rd). A high risk doctor did the actual ultrasound, and he was pretty positive about our chances for movement before delivery, so I'm trying to stay positive too. I'm avoiding all thoughts of what might happen if it hasn't moved by September 23rd, because those are the kinds of thoughts that might push me over the edge of anxiety (bed rest, bleeding, surgery).

We did get a chuckle out of the appointment, though, when I probed further about the definition of pelvic rest.

OB: No sex.
HL: But what exactly does that mean?
OB: No intercourse.
HL: So no orgasms?
OB: Oh no, orgasms are fine.
HL: Ohhhh, thank God. That's fine then.

(Big laugh from the room)

High Risk OB: I guess he'll just have to work a little harder, then.

(More laughter)

OB: All we're saying is please don't put objects in your vagina. Everything else is fine.
HL: Oh great, that's not a big deal at all. (visible relief)

(Josh tries to sink into the floor from mortification)

We had a full ultrasound look at the baby, who is still appearing adorable and healthy and perfect. We got some 3-D pictures of the little cutie smooshing itself up against my placenta with one little hand against its nose and the other hand caressing the umbilical cord. It was so strange to watch it play with the umbilical cord and see it wrapped all around the baby. It makes me a little nervous, but the high risk OB said that the cord is unbelievably slippery, which is why cord accidents are so rare.

We still didn't find out the sex, although I was burning holes into the screen trying to catch a peek of private parts. I can't say anything for sure, although I never glimpsed a penis even though we had several viewings. I'm soooo tempted to find out, but I know that if I actually do find out I'll be disappointed that I didn't hold out until the delivery. Especially if this placenta situation doesn't resolve itself, I think the not knowing will help me through the third trimester. I have a whole other post ruminating on the topic, so I'll save this for another day.

In the meantime, we're shooting the baby more positive vibes and asking him or her to try pushing the placenta a little. We only need a 2 cm clearance away from the cervix, which seems so small. So doable. If only my uterus will move that sucker out of the way. I'm also going to be calling some acupuncturists and see if anyone makes any positive claims about being able to move placentas. Let's hope so!

Monday, August 11, 2008

toddlers are germy

Okay, okay, you all have convinced me to do it. I found myself obsessing over whether to do the toddler program or not, and after reading all of your posts, and confirming with the program's instructor that we could cancel if it didn't go well at all, I decided to do it. Since making the decision, I have felt a HUGE measure of relief. That tells me that my choice is probably the right one.

I'm still nervous about being away from him for a whopping 8 hours a week, but I'm also excited to see how he does with the program, and excited to have some time alone to do all the things I barely have time for these days. You'll laugh, but I'm so happy to have time to clean my house and do my laundry and keep things picked up and organized. All of those things have to get done at some point, but I constantly feel overwhelmed by the minimal amount of time I have to work on them. Imagining what it will be like to have 8 hours of uninterrupted time to do everything, plus nap times after that, feels luxurious. Plus, the thought of being able to take the dogs to the vet, or me to the OB, without packing 89 toys and snacks to keep Gabe entertained is awesome.

Now I'm just hoping he likes it.

The opportunity to do a different program only one day a week popped up over the weekend also, and I was tempted. I thought it would resolve my nervousness over Gabe being away for too many hours, but talking to my parents and Josh and my in-laws convinced me to stick with the two day a week program. It'll be more stable for Gabe, and everyone else insisted that I'd regret it terribly when I realized that one day a week was nothing.

So we're signed up and ready to go and I'm excited. Gabe won't actually be starting until September 22nd, because we're going to California to visit my parents for the first two weeks of the program. We're just working to survive between now and then, because Gabe is sick AGAIN. I broke down and took him to the pediatrician this afternoon because I simply cannot tolerate any more whining and crying and being up at night. What was the result? Another bout of Coxsackie (otherwise known as Hand, Foot and Mouth). For those of you keeping track, this is his 4th time with Coxsackie, the second actual Coxsackie infection in a month, the third overall illness in a month. I'm exhausted. Our sleep is a disaster, Gabe is falling apart, and both Josh and I are moping around the house with sore throats and congestion. We need some serious immune boosting around here!

At least the weather is rainy and gloomy too, so we're not missing out on too much!

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

how early is too early?

I'm facing a truly heart-wrenching dilemma.

A neighbor emailed me yesterday to let me know that the toddler program her kids have all been enrolled in has an opening for an under 2 year old. The opening would be for Mondays and Wednesdays, from 9am to 1pm. Gabe would be one of six children, 2 others around his same age and 3 over the age of 2. The cost is pretty reasonable and would run from September to June.

The program is somewhat structured, with playtimes, snacktimes, reading and music time, lunchtime, and even weekly baking! We stopped by the woman's house today to see her space and have her meet Gabe, and she seemed friendly and sweet. She has three grown children and has been doing this for several years. My neighbor had nothing but good things to say about her program, and said that her kids all loved it. I also have a call in to another mother who is sending her fourth child there this fall, an eighteen month old.

At first glance, I jumped at the opportunity. A toddler program would mean 8 hours of free time for me. 8 hours to run errands, go to doctor's appointments, clean the house, do laundry, exercise, take a nap! Come December, 8 hours would mean time alone with the baby! 8 hours would mean socialization for Gabe, structure, stimulation, learning to listen to someone else's discipline, lots of fun. 8 hours would also mean time away from my sweet boy. It means that someone else will have influence on him besides me. It means that he could pick up "bad" toddler behaviors that I've been studiously avoiding thus far. It means that I have to let him go, just that little bit.

I've realized over the past couple of months, though, that I need to find a way to get a break sometimes too. Josh works a lot. He leaves around 6:30 every morning and doesn't get home most nights until 7:30 or 8pm. He often is able to play with Gabe for half an hour, and then holes himself up in his office until 10pm or later every night. He has been exceedingly stressed lately, and it is exhausting for me to be alone with Gabe all day, cook dinner alone, clean up alone, do laundry alone, do all of the upkeep for the house, plus all of the errands, and then deal with an occasionally cranky husband (and child, of course).

I'm unbelievably grateful to Josh for how hard he works, so I don't want this to sound like I'm complaining about him. I'm not. He's awesome. He bends over backwards to help during the weekends, but still, it's hard. I need a break sometimes too, and since we've never even hired a babysitter before (mostly my fault due to nervousness on my part and not wanting to spend the money unnecessarily), the vast majority of the work falls on me.

So bottom line, I need to either get a babysitter or do a toddler program. I can't keep doing it all with minimal help, especially not with 002 on the way. Letting go is always hard, and although he is so big these days, he still seems like such a baby to me. I don't want him away from me for so many hours every week, but I acknowledge that he'll likely be fine and welcome the change of scenery. It's a hard decision to make, though. Any thoughts? Did anyone do a toddler program at 20 months? Is it too much? Am I being ridiculous?