Thursday, August 23, 2012

Becoming a Family of Three

It all started in mid-January; I woke up with some nausea and fatigue, flu bug, right? Wrong. After a visit to the doctor we confirmed that we would be welcoming little baby Walsh on September 18th and that I was approximately six weeks pregnant.

I was so excited to be pregnant and even more excited to spend the next 34 weeks growing and glowing. Well, to my surprise I woke up at six weeks one day with what one may call “All Day Pregnancy Sickness”, no glowing and definitely no growing. It didn’t matter how many funny looking pressure point sweat bands I wore around my wrist, how much ginger I consumed or how fast I could ingest saltine crackers…I was sick and would spend the next 13 weeks sick. Dinners, grocery store trips, family visits and workdays were all cut short due to my sickness. And of all things, the sound of squeaky windshield wipers would exacerbate the sickness making any and all car rides (especially on rainy days) complete torture. As the sickness worsened, my skin started to resemble that of a 15 year old going through puberty and I still wonder if my skin will ever recover from the scars that have been left behind. My only hope was to count down the days until the second trimester (approximately 14 weeks) because rumor had it that the second trimester would become our second honeymoon, if you know what I mean. So…week 14 passed, week 16 passed and week 17. With no signs of relief I started to wonder if this sickness was going to be my new worst enemy for the remaining 23 weeks and I started to doubt if the sickness would subside even after baby Walsh’s arrival.

The start of week 19 not only brought on a new day and a new week, I can confidently say it was now an entirely new and different pregnancy. My skin started to clear up, my belly started to grow round, the baby’s feet started to flutter and most importantly I wasn’t sick. Now I wasn’t quite glowing, but I was on my way. Week 20, we traveled to the Caribbean on a cruise and as you can imagine I had anxiety about motion sickness (which wouldn’t be to anyone’s surprise), but believe it or not I managed the entire cruise without getting sick. Our week 20 Ultra Sound confirmed that baby Walsh was growing exactly as expected, which was such a relief. Baby Walsh also went snorkeling in the Cozumel Sea, now that is a milestone for 20 weeks gestation. With the rough part behind me, it was time to trek forward on this pregnancy journey and try to put all of doubt and hesitations aside and start glowing.

I am writing this today at 36 weeks pregnant and I think I can officially say under my abnormally thick locks of hair, behind my acne scarred skin and watermelon sized belly I can see the pregnancy glow. I am happy to report that I am staying active with daily walks, squats and eating a reasonably healthy diet. I crave salads for breakfast, lunch and dinner and admit my deep love for chocolate ice cream is still with me. I absolutely love watching baby Walsh’s little limbs rub across my belly and feel so connected with our little one. My belly grows by the day now and Matt keeps me on my oil and lotion routine for stretch mark prevention. We have attended 10 weeks of Bradley Birthing classes, watched videos about childbirth from the 1940’s to the present and still remain hopeful that we can have a natural childbirth. Pregnancy has also left my mind a little scrambled. We have found the sugar bowl in the freezer, the car keys dangling in the fridge atop a chilled six pack of beer and I managed to walk right by our garbage tote and proceeded to run over it with Matt’s truck. Yes, I am living proof that pregnancy brain does exist.

We have four weeks to go and the baby is measuring between 6-6.5 pounds with a heart rate of 152. I have gained 27 pounds to date and hope to keep to my goal weight gain of 30. Let the countdown begin!

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