Tuesday, June 4, 2013

36 weeks

How on earth did we get here? The last six or so weeks have gone by so, so fast, it's completely mind-blowing. We are three weeks - or probably less - from meeting E2, from confronting a different labor and delivery than the only one we've known, from a different hospital experience. It's so much to think about.

How Far Along: 36 weeks today. E2 is giant. He should be the size of a head of romaine lettuce (height-wise), and weigh over 5 pounds. I have an update on his weight, though. Crikey.

Total Weight Gain/Loss: I gained two pounds over last week. Huh.

Maternity Clothes: Yes.

Movement: This kiddo really likes distorting my belly these days, pushing his little butt out and to the right several times a day. He's stretching a lot more, too, which gets uncomfortable.

Sleep: Horrid the last few days. Last night I was in a murderous mood, between the heat (mostly generated by E2, he's slowly killing me from the inside out), Paul's mouth-breathing and bed-hogging, the cat screwing around in E2's pack & play (don't even get me started on that!), and the dog scratching on the door to go out four times in about 20 minutes during the middle of the night - plus the fact that I just can't sleep for crap anymore. I am starting to wonder if all of this is preparing for E2's inevitable arrival and overnight needs. Oy.

Gender: A baby brother for Aliya and Bennett.

Symptoms: More Braxton Hicks (more on that below), uncomfortable movements from baby, sleep issues...but you know what?! I made it through this entire day without Zofran!!!!!

Cravings: None, really.

Belly Button In or Out: 100% out. Crazytown!

Freak-out of the Week: Ha ha ha. Major freak outs this week. Let's see: there was last Thursday's "routine" NST at St. Pete's, which turned into 3 hours of continuous monitoring and a cervical check for me because I was contracting the entire time (diagnosis: slight dehydration and irritable uterus, but only dilated to a loose 1 cm, no more than 50% effaced, and baby's head was not engaged in my pelvis). That really freaked me out, mostly because I couldn't even feel them, except for three. A lot of the contractions were large, too...I remembered seeing my friend EJ's monitor during her induced labor and the nurse saying they wanted to see contractions over 50...and some of mine were 80-90. And I couldn't even feel them. Holy crap. Talk about lack of confidence now in reading my body during labor!

The second freak out was yesterday morning. I had another NST scheduled, this time at Dr. M.'s office. Prior to that, I drove into a specialty lingerie shop - pounding water because I could feel contractions and so didn't want a repeat of Thursday's NST at Dr. M.'s later - and got fitted for a couple of "transitional" maternity bras, super stretchy and comfy but with nursing flaps to get me through until I am fitted for "real" nursing bras two weeks postpartum. I cried on the way there. See, I slept very poorly the night before and had several really vivid, scary dreams. Yes, some of that is normal pre-delivery anxiety, but some of it is baby loss trauma. And it sucks. In one, Dr. M. gave me a personal tour of the Family Birth Center, where we'll deliver, and took me into room LL07, where the twins delivered. He was pointing out the Jacuzzi tub and stuff...yeah yeah yeah, we know what's in that room. I in turn pointed out where I delivered Aliya, where I started vomiting uncontrollably, where Paul struggled to get his pants on after waking up in the middle of Bennett's delivery, where the babies lay on the counter as they rushed me in for the D&C, where they were displayed in their bassinet at the foot of my bed for the rest of my 36-hour stay. This part, I know, came in my dreams because we've been faced with whether or not to request a Jacuzzi tub for labor this time, and there are only two in the hospital, room LL07 and LL08 (across the hall, where another family experienced a loss during my stay, based on the tear posted on their door). I awoke from my dreams feeling both overwhelmed with fear that I would contract again during the NST and end up induced or delivering, but also fears of cord accidents the further along we get. Paul and I are taking turns with this fear, thankfully...I can't imagine if we were both struck with this at the same time.

The appointment at Dr. M.'s, incidentally, was just fine. Baby passed the NST with flying colors, I didn't contract, I have plenty of fluid, and E2 is massive...approximately 7 pounds 11 ounces at this point. Dr. M. still refers to his little paper chart, which indicates E2 is in the 85th percentile, but UW's measurements (and Dr. M.'s own ultrasound machine) indicate he's actually in the 94th percentile. His head is still every bit as big, and is actually swaying the measurements. Lucky me!

Looking Forward To: I would say another good NST on Thursday, but I appear to have jinxed myself last week, so...

Next Appointment: Thursday morning at St. Pete's for another NST, then back to Dr. M.'s Monday for NST and a fluid scan.

Miscellaneous: I was blessed enough yesterday to be surprised at my NST/ultrasound appointment by my dear friend, her hubby and their baby boy (12 weeks old today!), who is E2's BFF. I swear, it's like she read my mind and knew I needed support. Seeing them in the parking lot made my day, and to find out they'd actually stalked me made it all the better. She and the baby kept me company during both my NST and ultrasound, and it was marvelous. Love you, EJ!!!

The belly at 36 weeks. My shirts feel a little short!


  1. Good luck getting thru these last few weeks :) you are doing great. I will be thinking of you!

  2. Hang in there mama! Sending positive energy your way.

  3. Yeah for 36 weeks!!!! E2 weighs the same as I did when I was born, and incidently, the same as J & T combined. I'm thinking of you daily. Love u.

  4. Getting so close...anxiety is totally normal and I am hoping that he keeps on cooperating. Thinking of you!!!

  5. Oh, the anxiety is so overwhelming. I feared a cord accident, a ruptured placenta, and every possible birth complication. And not like "vaguely anxious" but like OMG serious terror. 36 weeks is tough because it's so damn uncomfortable and you just want the baby out, but you know the baby would be better off if he can cook safely for another couple of weeks and yet being pregnant doesn't feel "safe" for baby in our world. Wishing you much luck, and uneventful NSTs.


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