Wednesday, April 30, 2008


I just noticed that my stats say that I have broken 10,000 hits to my blog (since I installed the counter). Yeah me! =) Thanks for reading along with my craziness!

I have some posts bumping around in my head, but I am too tired to write any of them down right now. Hopefully I'll have some more energy tomorrow or Friday...


You know you're "really" pregnant when...

you loose bladder control when you cough.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

It's Started Already

*p-word warning*

I was warned about it. I've seen people do it. In my younger days I may have even done it myself. However, I thought I still had some time before my personal space started to be invaded. I mean, unless you've seen me naked to look at my 2 tiny stretch marks (I mark at the sneeze of a fat cell...) there is no way you would know I was pg! As soon as I came out of the pg closet I might as well have painted a permanent bulls eye on my belly. I'm talking, of course, about The Belly Rub. I have already been felt up by several people. It hasn't happened with strangers or new acquaintances yet, but a couple of my acquaintance-friends (more than a mere acquaintance, but not a close friend) apparently feel free enough to just pat, grab, or rub my abdomen. And the worst part is that since I'm only 16w my pudge is still fairly low in my abdomen so their hands are also kind of low... However, this does give my "girls" a little bit of breathing room (at least for now) from the inevitable "brushes" that are to come.

Why is it that people think that a pregnant woman's body somehow becomes public domain? Most people would never consider touching a non-pregnant person in the middle section without permission. Why don't they think it's necessary to get permission just because I'm growing another person inside me? If you think about it, they are actually invading the personal space of 2 people!

I do realize that there isn't much I can do about this. I knew it was part of pg. I've heard friends complain about it. All I can do is whine on my blog and hope that people will at least ask my permission first before grabbing me.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Chinese Calendar Gender Predictions

**Post all about the p-word and babies**

So, I've been wondering about the gender of this baby I'm trying to grow. In the beginning of the pregnancy, in the milliseconds when I let myself think about it, I felt like this baby was a boy. Lately though (the last few weeks) I've been feeling like the baby is a girl. Hubby wants to find out the sex so I only have a few weeks of wondering before my next doc apt at 19w.

A lot have people around me have been speculating. It's amazing how much people want to talk about pg when they know there's a preggo in the room... Several people have told me to consult the Chinese calendar to predict the sex of my baby. I was curious, especially since my "girl" feelings lately have been pretty strong, so I checked it out. I did the math and converted everything to the lunar calendar like you're supposed to and supposedly it's a ............... BOY. I was actually kind of excited about that. Not that I wouldn't be happy about and love a girl! I know I would. However, For the last few years I have thought it would be kind of fun to be the mom of boys. You know those cool moms who have all boys? I'm sure you know one of them. I'm not very girly, so I think I might be able to pull off being a cool "boy mom."

Does anyone have an opinion about the various methods of gender prediction? I will post a poll to let people make their own predictions...

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Not Spoiled Any More =(

If you don't feel like listening to whining (about life, not the p-word), then feel free to skip this post.

I miss my husband. I am happy that he finally seems to have a job that matches his skills, interests him, and pays decently. However, I miss the days when he was a student and was home a lot. I basically got to see him any time I didn't have to work... I got to see him whenever I wanted. Now, he leaves in the morning before I do and he gets home after I do. In the morning neither one of us are big talkers. We pretty much just stay quiet and go about getting ready for the day. We both also get home pretty late (between 8-9pm) so we don't have much time together in the evenings... especially lately because I have been so tired and going to bed earlier than normal. Then, for 6 weeks in a row (4 down, 2 more to go) I have to work Saturdays. That means my only day off is Friday... and hubby has Saturdays and Sundays off... Add all these things together and you get a couple of people who don't get to spend a lot of time together (unless you count snoring next to eachother, which I don't).

I miss the days of being spoiled and getting to see hubby whenever I wanted.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Naive or Just Plain Mean?

Yesterday Mel posted about this, and updated with this. I debated about whether to enter the conversation or not. I vacillated between not wanting to give any more attention to something so offensive (on SO MANY levels) and my desire to add some of my ideas to the conversation, to give another perspective to consider. I guess, in this case, I am going to err on the side of saying something. I just feel like I need to speak up because to remain silent feels irresponsible.

Firstly, some of what I was thinking about responsible academic supervision and academia in general has already been addressed very eloquently by Mel. I don't feel like I need to say anything more about this... Just read Mel's 2nd post.

The second issue I wanted to address as to do with the purpose of art. Mel already made some wonderful statements about an artist's responsibility to consider the intent of a piece and the prediction of possible reactions to the piece by others (again, see Mel's second entry on the subject). However, I feel the need to add some comments:

"The goal in creating the art exhibition, Shvarts said, was to spark conversation and debate on the relationship between art and the human body."

I can't help but wonder about the elephant in the room. This project, in my opinion, did not make a statement about the human body. The most obvious statement made by this piece has to do with the meaning of life. I don't mean just the meaning of a new human life, but also the meaning/purpose of motherhood and reproduction as well. I find the piece insulting and disrespectful on so many levels. First and foremost, in my humble opinion, Shvarts completely dismisses the value of a human life in it's very beginning and most vulnerable state. (I know that many people outright disagree with me on this point, or at least feel ambivalent about this. However, I am Catholic and this is my blog and I feel very strongly about this.) Not only does Shvarts completely dismiss even the possibility that life begins at the moment of conception, but her actions blatantly ridicule that life and those who value that life.

On the flip side, I also think that her piece shows a complete disregard for the genuine anguish that people who have experienced miscarriage and infertility have experienced. Shvarts has trivialized the experience of miscarriage. And, she has also trivialized the anguish that many women who choose to have an abortion have gone through. Her piece has not even taken into consideration the very real and lasting emotions that go along with the REAL EXPERIENCE of miscarriage and abortion. I realize that she is young and naive and has probably never experienced these things first hand. (Although, I do think there is a slim possibility that she has experienced either m/c or abortion and this piece is an attempt to minimize the importance of the experience in her life. However, that seems to warrant another different discussion.) I do think, though, that even if a person has never experienced a particular type of suffering, a responsible artist would, at the very least, attempt to do some research and try to empathize with those who have experienced that suffering. If that can't happen, then I would hope that basic common sense and common courtesy would tell her that her project idea was disrespectful and irresponsible and that she should come up with another way to bring about discussion on "the relationship between art and the human body." Off the top of my head I can think of several different ways to spur that discussion... A discussion that she has completely failed at spurring, I might add.

I do take comfort in the fact that both pro-life and pro-choice groups have been upset by this project and have made statements against it. I'm encouraged to know that it is possible for pro-lifers and pro-choicers can come together (at least for certain topics). Maybe there is hope for our nation to come together in some way on life issues.

OK. I think that is all the energy I care to devote to this topic.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

"Us" vs "Them"??

Have you ever had an experience where you start to realize that some people you work with have the attitude of "Us" vs "Them" rather than "We" work as a team? I don't really want to go into details, but I think I may have had a wake-up call yesterday. I am a supervisor and I always thought that my team and I got along pretty well and that we worked as a team. Yesterday I found out that one of my team members has not been communicating with me about something about our working environment. She did, however, talk with my boss about it... I found out when my boss (the pastor) came to talk with me. I don't think she started the conversation with my boss, but she still should have talked to me about it a long time ago rather than just stewing in hard feelings!

I find this kind of situation very frustrating! I can't make people talk to me. However, when we are supposed to be working as a team we need good communication! This team member has very strong opinions (that don't always match mine) so I have struggled for a while with figuring out if she's stewing about a difference of opinion I already know about or if it's something else. I never thought, though, that she would go over my head without talking to me! Uuggh.

How would you handle a situation like this? I have told my team so many times that if they have a concern they should talk to me about it. When they do come talk to me I try to be a good listener and address any issues that are problematic for them. Most of the time we are able to resolve any issues in a way that everyone is satisfied. What else can I do? Are there any other supervisors out there? How do you encourage your staff to communicate with you about things, even if they disagree with what you are doing/thinking (or what they think you are doing/thinking)?

Currently I have monthly staff meetings and I try to check in with the staff individually in a casual way. We have an annual review system in place, but I haven't been meeting formally with my staff individually outside of those annual reviews. Maybe I need to start meeting with each person regularly in a more formal setting?? I haven't done this because 3 out of the 5 members of my team really dislike coming in for their annual review. I thought the formality of the meetings was what made them stressed about their annuals. However, maybe a more formal setting will help bring up more issues?? I don't know. Any suggestions you have would be welcome!

I am also trying to think of someone in RL I know who is a good supervisor who can give me advice. It's hard, though, because most of the supervisory examples I can think of have their own glaring weaknesses. I know nobody is perfect, but I would like to be thought of as a good supervisor... Should I come up with some kind of eval that my staff can fill out on me? We talk about their evals every year and work on their strengths and weaknesses... My boss does my eval, but he doesn't really see me in action very often. Maybe I need to get more personal feedback from my staff?? I think a supervisor eval would be unprecedented at my church...

OK. I think I am just rambling at this point. If you have any suggestions for me, please share! In the meantime I might try to go back to sleep for a while. I only got 4 hours before a "bathroom break" got extended by my overactive brain... Thanks in advance for your help!

Saturday, April 12, 2008


Short Update: I'm still exhausted from work and lack of sleep. OB apt yesterday went well. Without a doubt I am definitely in the 2nd trimester! No sono, but hb=156, which is still strong. Refused the pap smear (I've never had one come back abnormal, I'm not sleeping around, and I didn't feel like getting my cervix scraped!) and the nurse humored me. Worked my 3rd Saturday in a row (normally my day off), only 3 more to go before I get a break! Hubby's job is still going well (which is good since he's only worked 2 days!).

Hung out with some friends yesterday and they hooked me up with some maternity clothes. A BIG thank you to them! My stomach is definitely starting to expand and I can't zip up some of my pants anymore. It's nice to have some clothing options again. I highly recommend the belly band! You still get to wear your favorite "skinny" clothes and it provides a little support for your heavy tummy.

OK. I think that is enough incomplete sentences for 1 post... I'll try to write a better post after I am able to catch some ZZZZs.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Cardiologist Update

I know I am behind on updating about my results from the cardiologist. I have been very busy (which, I suppose, is normal) and very tired (unfortunately, this has also become normal). I decided to give you the short story now, and maybe elaborate later.

Short Story: All of the tests showed that my heart is normal and working well with one small exception. I do have one valve that leaks a little. The doc said that is pretty common during pg. He told me I shouldn't need to worry unless I start to get a lot of palpitation episodes that lower my blood pressure to the point of feeling dizzy or passing out. So, that's pretty good news. And, apparently, the nodules were on long enough, and close enough to the correct position, to be able to detect my heart well enough to satisfy the doctor.

I have my 14w check up tomorrow, so I should have some more updates after that.

Hubby started his new job today and had a great first day. It was nice to see him happy and even excited about his job! Praise God!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Trusting My Body

** P-word mentioned** This post is about coming to terms with my identity and IF and pg and dealing with my losses.

I think I realized one of the reasons I have had a hard time accepting this pg... Why is still feel anxious at the thought of telling my co-workers and people from church. I don't trust that my body is capable of nurturing a pg. After everything we went through with IF, I learned to distrust my body and it's "motherly" qualities. Now, even though everything is pointing to the fact that my body seems to be successfully carrying this pg, my identity is still "that IF girl." I'm not really sure what to do about that. I do think that, if I am able to let go of my other 2 losses (not forget! just not hold them so closely to my heart), that might help me.

Currently, I think I am holding on to those losses, but ignoring (burying?) my feelings of loss. A couple weeks ago my parents suggested I talk to the baby. I finally did the other day. I told the baby to just concentrate on holding on and growing and that the only reason to stop growing was if God asked him/her to go to heaven. If that were the case, at least he/she would have a brother and sister there to hang out with (we named our babies Lucy and Christopher because a priest told us we should name them and then give them over to God... we did the first part, but have yet to do the second...). At this point I started crying. It would have been sobbing, but I was driving and I didn't want to crash. Obviously I need to work on the letting go part...

Besides letting go of my losses, I'm not sure what I can do to trust my body more. I kind of feel like this pg is a fluke. And, frankly, I'm not sure I should start to trust my body. I don't want to get side-swiped again. I don't know if my realization will change anything about my experience other than to help me understand a little better. However, understanding is good.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Friday Flickr Foto Fun

A couple people have done this today and I thought it was cute. You can join too, if you want. Just pick your pictures from Flickr. =)

My name is...

My relationship status is...

My favorite color is...

My celebrity crush is...

My favorite princess is...
My favorite adult beverage is...

My dream vacation is...

When I grow up I want to be...

Have a great weekend!

What is 27 x 6?

** P-word post warning **

Answer = 162

That is my baby's heartbeat. How do I know this? My doppler arrived about 20 minutes ago! It took me about 10 minutes to open everything up, read all the instructions, and get myself situated. Then, of course, it was time to listen to my baby!!! According to the instructions, the key is to apply a "liberal" amount of the gel and then to move the wand slowly so as not to miss the baby's heartbeat. I have to admit, it was a very exciting moment! I have been having all kinds of paranoid fears that something is wrong with the baby, that I had a missed m/c or some other horrible turn of events. It was very reassuring to hear that heartbeat! It took me a couple minutes to find it because I didn't have the wand pointed in the right way at first. My fat roll got in the way and I had to position the wand under the roll, but above my pelvic bone. But, once I figured out where to position the wand, I was golden.

I have to admit, I'm feeling pretty excited right now. I'm on a natural high! =) I'm also feeling a lot calmer about my situation. According to 16 of the 22 people who took my poll, I am in my 2nd trimester. 4 more of you think I will be in the 2nd trimester tomorrow. It feels good to hit this milestone (especially when I am able to hear that beautiful heartbeat).

I guess it's time to start making some concrete decisions and plans for the baby to come. My mom has been researching diapering options already. Once hubby starts his job I think we need to start making changes to the room that will become the baby's room. We have to clear everything out and figure out a way to fit it into the office or get rid of it. I am looking forward to tackling the last of the clutter in our house. We haven't completely unpacked from moving in June! It's time to get rid of those boxes and that clutter. I'm feeling very motivated to accomplish things at this moment. I just wish I wasn't so dang tired! I think I'm going to have to go take a nap before I can start going through things and cleaning for the weekend.

162! Yeah!

Learning About My Heart

This post is not about feelings. I just wanted to share what I've learned while trying to find out why I'm having palpitations.

1. When you're getting an echo-cardiagram and you "jokingly" say to the nurse, "Do you want to see a baby?" she will not take you up on your offer... even if you bring it up twice...

2. My ob's office is not the only doc's office to hire inept support staff.

3. You should be worried when you are getting blood drawn and tell the nurse that you have hard-to-find veins so it works better to use a butterfly and she looks in all the drawers and says she's not sure they have a butterfly needle... (Does she know what a butterfly needle is?)

4. If you are adamant with the aforementioned nurse she will eventually go find a more experienced nurse who will come in and open the drawer the aforementioned nurse "searched" and pull out a butterfly needle asap. The experienced nurse will also take pity on you and take your blood herself, but still have trouble finding a vein.

5. If the doc's office is older with 70s decor, then the machines in the office are probably not state of the art.

6. If you know you have to be monitored for 24 hours to see if the doc can "catch" one of your episodes, make sure to take a shower that morning because you aren't getting wet for 24 hours.

7. When they prepare your chest to attach the nodules that detect your heart rhythms, they will "sterilize" your skin with a piece of velcro dipped in alcohol.

8. The aforementioned nodules ITCH LIKE CRAZY for the entire 24 hours.

9. The machine that is attached to the nodules via a series of wires and is supposed do "clip" to your belt will not stay in place.

10. When the aforementioned machine that "attaches to your belt" slips off, it sometimes will fall hard enough to detach one of the aforementioned nodules from your chest. And, when you try to reattach the nodule it does not stick as well.

11. Murphy has a great sense of humor. If your palpitations seem to be stress related, and you're worried about money, your husband will be offered a wonderful job 30 minutes after the nodules have been attached and the machine has been turned on.

12. The aforementioned machine is very annoying when you are trying to sleep because it "clips" very poorly to pajama bottoms.

13. If you have big bbies and can't sleep on your back due to being pg, your big bbies will dislodge the aforementioned nodules, which you will have to reattach during your bathroom breaks.

14. The aforementioned itching is the gift that keeps on giving, even after you are finally able to permanently detach the aforementioned nodules.

15. The aforementioned nodules also leave another gift:

Needless to say, I am glad that this particular test is over... I just hope that I won't have to repeat it because the nodules kept coming off... I see the doc again next Tuesday for results. However, I am very happy about hubby's new job. Because of all our money worries, hubby decided to try and get back into computers. At his first phone interview for a computer job they liked him so much they offered him the job without an in-person interview. Go hubby!! =) I am especially happy because hubby's self-esteem took a pretty big hit the last time he did a major job search and had difficulty. He was really worried that he wouldn't ever be offered a computer job because his skills are a little rusty (he's been out of the field for a couple years). Hopefully this job will be good for his self-esteem as well as our checkbook. It is nice to feel like we don't have to worry about how we are going to pay for this baby...