Bedrest

12 Oct

Baby Boy Jones’ swimming pool is starting to become a bit of an issue. A few months ago, I had an ultrasound that showed that my amniotic fluid level was on the low side of normal. The doctor told me to drink water like it was my job and to rest whenever I could. I did, and at the follow-up u/s my fluid was back up to a perfectly normal and safe range. They were happy. I was happy. Asher was happy. Everything was all good.

They wanted to do another late-term u/s just to make sure things were still on the right track. I went this past Wednesday and the fluid level was down – even lower than before. They did a test where they track Mr. Man’s different movements and organ functions. Everything checks off as perfectly fine and healthy. The only thing is that if my fluid level drops any lower they might have to take him early.

Sooo…….

Bed rest for a week is just what the doctor ordered … and not AT ALL what I was expecting. I thought I was in the clear. Apparently not. The strangest thing is that I’ve been feeling better in the last few weeks than I have in my whole third trimester. It just goes to show that you never really know what’s happening in your body during pregnancy. It is like this huge mystery of the universe that no one can understand or predict. Every woman’s experience is completely different. Thank goodness for doctors who are smarter than I am.

I was holding back tears in the room after they told me to take a week off work. Mike (who has insisted on being by my side for every appointment he could possibly make) handed me a tissue and told me that it would be ok. Later I found out that he was so relieved for me.  He’s been worried that I am pushing myself too hard. It was comforting to know that he feels like this is best. I hate feeling like I’m an inconvenience, and my employer is no exception.

As we were leaving, my midwife (who knows me and my style by this point) put both of her hands on my stomach and looked me straight in the eyes. “This baby needs to be your focus right now. Not school, not work…just this little man.” A light bulb went off above my head. That was exactly what I needed to hear. Of course the baby is on my mind 24/7, but I’ve also been focusing a ton on finishing my BSN, working, getting the nursery organized, nesting…and all the other million things that pop up in the course of life.

Although the baby’s not physically here beside me, as in outside of my womb, he is HERE already…growing and needing my focus and attention. I’ve had this mindset of, “I’ve got to accomplish all these things before the baby gets here”. Well, too late, folks! He’s here. He’s just not HERE here yet, if you know what I mean. I need to make his growth, my peace and rest, and his swimming pool level a matter of higher priority. *inhale…exhale* I go back for another u/s in a week. I’ll keep you posted.

Cheers to a week of bed rest! Cheers to refilling his swimming pool. Cheers to you, my small watermelon-sized baby boy. Mama loves you!

3rd Tri

22 Aug

Well here we are…over 2/3 of the way through this pregnancy. I can’t believe it. I’m in my third trimester. I feel like I’m going to blink and our son will be here. I can’t wait.

The nursery is looking super cute. It’s my old office, so we still have to take down my framed diploma and license and remove all my nurse-y type books off the bookshelf. The crib is assembled and ready. We need to get the rocking chair in there, de-office it, hang the decorations and that’s it. Feels really good. Dinosaurs and alligators will hang out with Mr. Man in his nursery.

I am definitely more tired this trimester. I thought I was tired in the first few months. I thought I was tired working night shift. Now I have come to the conclusion: I had no clue what tired really felt like!!! I’m sure new parenthood brings an even more intense tired than this. I’m mentally preparing myself now. I’m so glad that I get a few months off work to learn how to manage mommy-hood tired.

Our last ultrasound confirmed that baby Asher is indeed growing as he should according to the new due date. I thank God for this. Another thing they found, however, is that my amniotic fluid level is low. The doctor’s first question to me was, “Are you on your feet a lot, or are you really busy?”  (Um, HELLO?!?) My response was, “I’m a nurse and I work 12-hour shifts.” Then the ultrasound tech interjected that I also was taking online college classes full-time. He told me to say no more…his wife is a nurse and went through the same thing. He prescribed rest and hydration. I’ve been measuring my water intake, completely cut out caffeine (GASP!!!) and cancelled all the house-projects I had planned for my break between semesters. I take afternoon naps on my days off and try to sit as much as possible while I’m at work (which is nearly impossible…but I’m making a good honest effort). I have another repeat ultrasound next week just to check the fluid level again. I hope I pass! If not, it could potentially require a bed rest situation for a week with another ultrasound after that to see if it helped. Low fluid can equal early labor, so we are trying to avoid that if at all possible.

The heartburn, restless (and never enough) sleep, frequent bathroom trips, emotions, headaches, and discomfort of tri-3 are not very fun. But it is so exciting to be getting closer. We want you to stay in there as long a possible, but can’t wait for the right time for you to join us, little 3-pound chuck roast baby!

To Baby Boy Jones

12 Jul

I have wanted to write to you a hundred times in the past few months, little thang. So much has happened in our lives and in your growth that I’ve wanted to process, but it has been so very busy. Today particularly I needed to take some time for myself and for you. I have like 8 school projects that are due this week, but you are more important than all that. I took on a very heavy semester load so that I could finish my bachelors of nursing degree before you arrive. My last day of class is actually your due date, so do me a favor and join us after that. ok? ok! These next few months, while you’re finishing growing, will be very busy for me. I’m working like crazy to finish school so that when you arrive all my attention can be on you, us, and our new little family. I’m doing all of this for you.

We discovered that you are a boy. It was such a happy day when we found out. At first I was nervous…I’ve never really been around little boys that much. You have two awesome aunties who grew up with me, and we didn’t have a brother to teach us about little boys. You have a really fun cousin who is also a girl, so you will be the first little son/nephew/grandson of my family. The more I think about you and the awesome guy you will be, the more and more excited I am about being your mom. It feels like a big responsibility to raise a man. The world needs good men. That’s a lot of pressure. I’m certain that we will do just fine, but I feel a big responsibility to be the best parent I can be. Your dad is a fabulous example…so you have that going for you! He’s not perfect, but he’s kind, strong, courteous, and willing to learn. That makes him an awesome man.

When we had the ultrasound, they told me you were small. They decided to push back your due date by two full weeks. This (of course) freaked me out. They also said I hadn’t gained enough weight. I had been trying to still eat really healthy food and not overeat. But, because of all that, I decided to start eating more. This has been a struggle. People say “you’re eating for two”, but that’s a total lie! Women only need something like 300 extra calories a day to grow a human. That’s about a glass of whole milk. I’ve been trying to balance eating more with eating the right things and not becoming a beached whale. I like you as a cute little basketball baby bump. I don’t want to turn into a hippopotamus just because you’re in my uterus. Ya know? I go back for another ultrasound next month just to make sure that you’re still on track. I’ve finally started to put on a few pounds…so I think you’re doing alright in there.

Anyway, we started picking out all your stuff (registering). It’s been a lot of fun to think about your room in our house, and the environment we want you to rest and grow in. I know you’re not going to care about any of that in reality, but we are enjoying the process. A few people have already given us clothes for you. You’re going to be a very well-dressed little man. So many people already love you a ton!

I will always remember the first moment I felt you move inside me. There are no words to describe it. Your dad was out with the guys and I was at home lying in bed. I felt you move. I was frozen. I held my breath. You moved again. I never wanted to get up, ever, so that I could keep feeling you move. I thought to myself, “Is this really it? Is that really him?” It was unmistakable. You were in there, alive and well, and kicking me! It was one of the best moments of my life. I don’t say that lightly. Up until then, I had to wait for the doctor’s appointments to hear your heart beat and confirm that you were actually there. Now, since then, I have had confirmation every single day that you’re swimming around in there and doing just fine. It does my heart good.

We chose your name. It means “happy, fortunate, and blessed”. I think it suits you well. Your middle name will be Michael, because your dad is deserving of a legacy.

We love you so much and can’t wait to meet you, Asher Michael Jones – our little spaghetti squash sized baby.

Baby Daddy

30 Apr

Mike is blowing me away with this having-a-kid thing. I think he might be more excited than I am. For the first five years of our marriage, his response to the baby conversation was, “two more years”. Every year…it was, “two more years”. Then late last year he was just suddenly ready and ok with it. Something shifted and he felt it was the right time. We started trying to conceive…and boom! Second month of “timing it” and I was pregnant.

A couple of times a day he bends down to talk to my abdomen. “Hey, sweetie. This is your daddy. Be good and have fun in there. Be nice to your mommy today. I love you”. Cue the waterworks. I can hardly take it. He’s admittedly an eternal optimist, so whenever I get all anxious about the million things that we need to figure out before he/she arrives, Mike stays calm and reminds me that it’s all going to work out and that we’ll figure out what to do. He reminds me that all that matters is that little thang inside my belly that is growing and moving and learning how to suck his/her thumb.

Childcare, work schedules (mine is all over the place), prepping the nursery, eating right, exercise, house projects, baby showers, traveling for baby to meet out-of-state family, paternity leave options, maternity clothes, the expenses, saving, paying off debt, investing…these are all things that swirl around in my brain 24/7 that would drive me absolutely insane if I let them. Mike stays as solid as a rock. He reminds me that I’m not in this alone, that this is a partnership, that God is with us, that we have wonderful friends and family who will help us, and that people have babies all the time and FIGURE IT OUT!

I am so grateful for you, Mike Jones, father of my child, my best friend, my partner in life. Baby Jones, you are the luckiest kid in the world to have such a loving, hard-working, selfless, kind, strong daddy. You have no idea what an awesome role model you have to follow. You probably won’t appreciate it until you’re much, much older. But someday, I hope you recognize how lucky you are.

We both love you so much, little apple-sized baby.

new and exciting

13 Apr

So I have a very exciting new topic to discuss. The fabulous Mike Jones and I are going to procreate. Yes, you heard me, procreate. We are just SO FREAKING EXCITED!!!

Baby Jones will be here sometimes in late October/early November. I don’t really believe in due dates because statistically only 5% of women actually deliver a baby on their assigned due date. You don’t have to be a statistician to know that 5% is a really bad odd. So I don’t attach to a certain date. Baby Jones will be here whenever he/she decides to get here sometime in that general timeframe. I’m cool with that.

our little lime-sized blob

Supposedly that little whitish blob beneath the blackish blob is our child. Cute, eh? They lady doing the ultrasound was like, “oh and that’s its little arm.” and then I was like, “oh my gosh, its arm!” (couldn’t really see it). All I really cared about was the tiny fluttering we saw in its chest that was the heartbeat. I kept having these fears about them not being able to hear the heartbeat.

Pregnancy has also effectively reduced my palette to that of a 5-year-old’s. I want milk, juice, oranges and macaroni and cheese. Oh and beans earlier on, but that craving has subsided…probably since I started taking folic acid and iron in a pill form. Usually I’m a big protein girl and eat meat with almost every meal. Now I really don’t want it. I also previously ate salad almost every day. I can’t stand the thought of a salad! A couple of my normal grocery shopping staples are rotisserie chicken and a box of spring mix from Costco. Now just the thought of those foods makes me feel a little sick to my stomach. So weird.

I guess those things are just symptoms of the fact that E-VER-Y-THING in our lives is about to change. But from what I understand parenthood is pretty rockin, so I’m up for the challenge. We have lots to figure out in the next 6 months or so; I feel pretty overwhelmed when I think about the ever-expanding list of preparation that needs to happen. But I know people have babies all the time…and survive.

We feel so very blessed and couldn’t be happier. We thank God for you, little lime-sized-baby!

Gratitude

23 Nov

 

My dashing husband of 5 years who is my best friend. I want to live with him forever

My mom who is a wonderful example of character, unconditional love and resilience. Scott who adores her

My sisters who make my life rich in ways only sistas can

My dad who loves me from across the country. Marcella who treats us as her own

My sweet niece Julia who holds my heart in her messy almost-2-year-old hands

My extended family that feels like home when we’re together

My friends who have invited me into their lives with open arms and are understanding through thick and thin

My job. To be learning how to care for the sick

Health

A freezer and cupboards full of food when many in the world eat day-to-day

God being a rock under my feet wherever I step

My house that holds lots of people

Singing that opens my heart

Opportunities I didn’t create for myself

Reflecting on the past few years – and feeling accomplished

Plenty…so that I can be generous

Weird nurse dream #2

27 Sep

I was hanging out downtown and everywhere I went there were contact precautions signs or airborne precautions signs. So in these random public places I would have to put on gloves and a gown or a mask before I could go in.  When I started to wake up my half-asleep groggy brain thought that half of my bed was under contact precautions…just half of it. So I could roll over to one side and keep sleeping, but I couldn’t touch the other side.