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Sunday, September 26, 2010

30-32 Week Update with 3D Ultrasound

Just over 2 weeks ago (at 30 weeks pregnant), the entire family went to see baby Myers again via 3D Ultrasound.   We were all very excited to get to see his precious face in more detail, as the last 3D Ultrasound was done back at 18 weeks pregnant when there wasn't much detail to see other than if he was a boy or a girl!

At first, he didn't want to play along with us or the ultrasound technician.  He was hiding his face behind his hands AND his feet, and he refused to move.  I got up to walk around; I ate a handful of Hershey's kisses; I did a few high kicks; I even did a hand stand in the ladies washroom just to try to get him to move for us.  Nope, none of it worked!  It wasn't until his big sister Reagan crawled up on the table with me, placed her head on my belly and started talking to him like she does every morning when we wake up, that he started to move.  He pulled his feet back down, he moved his hands from his face, and he SMILED when he heard her voice!  It was the sweetest thing in the world, and she was one proud big sister when the technician looked at her and said, "Wow!  You are the only one who could get him to move and to smile!" 
Everything about Myers was absolutely perfect except for one small detail... he was breech!  I had a Dr.'s appointment the next day, and my OB confirmed what I had already discovered the day before... this little boy was not in his proper position for a natural delivery.  Being that I was only 30 weeks,  we knew that I still had time to try to get him to flip.  For days, this was ALL I could think about.   I did some research, and I decided to see if I could get him to move on his own.

How to Flip a Breech Baby at Home
First, I spent about 15 minutes in our hot tub to get me and him both nice and relaxed.  I have started keeping the temperature right at 100 degrees (instead of the normal 104 that we usually keep it at) so that I can still enjoy it without having to worry about getting too hot.   After the hot tub, I came inside to continue my experiment.  I had everything set up and ready, and with a little help from my sister I was ready to go.
I had placed our ironing board strategically up against the couch, and I positioned myself so that I was lying inverted on the ironing board with my head and shoulders on the floor, and the rest of me going UP the ironing board.  I had read that acupuncture applied to the pinkie toe will cause uterine movement, so we clipped clothes pins onto both of my pinkie toes.  It wasn't painful, but it wasn't pleasant either.  Next we wrapped a gel ice pack in a cloth and placed it directly at the very top of my uterus.  Babies don't like for their heads to be cold, so this was done to get him to move his head to a warmer, lower place!

I remained in this position with all the extra stuff for about 20 minutes.  The only thing that I didn't do, that I later found out would have also helped in this activity, was to place headphones playing classical music very close to my pubic bone to encourage him to flip to better hear the music.  This trick on its own worked for my neighbor after 3 nights of repetitive music playing.

Myers was definitely squirming all around while I was on the ironing board, but it wasn't until about 5 minutes after I had managed to get back onto the couch like a normal person (without the ironing board) that I felt my entire belly roll.  I was sure that he had to have flipped as there was no other explanation for that feeling.  I also couldn't feel his hard little head up at the top of my uterus any more.  But I wouldn't know for sure until my next Dr.'s appointment two weeks later if he had really made the turn or not.  Little did I know, I was going to find out sooner than expected!

One week ago, on Sunday evening, I was convinced that I was in labor.  It was 4:30 in the afternoon, and I had just woken up from a nap.  I had quite a bit of back pain when I got out of the bed, but I just assumed that maybe I had slept funny.  Like any very pregnant woman who wakes up after a 2 hour spell of sleeping, I had a full bladder and needed to go to the bathroom.  Only I couldn't.  For almost 2 hours I tried to empty what felt like an extremely full bladder, but I could only get a few "tinkles" here and there.   I decided to phone the maternity ward at the hospital to get their opinion, and while I was on the phone with the nurse, the pain began to intensify in my back and wrap around to the front.  It felt identical to a contraction.  The nurse and I both decided that it would be a safe idea for me to go to the hospital to be monitored, just in case.  I very calmly called Ryan upstairs and told him to take me to the hospital while I also told Anna that she and Reagan needed to have a slumber party and that it needed to start immediately!

The pain kept getting worse, and by the time we made the short 5 minute drive to the hospital, I could hardly stand up on my own.  The nurses had me hooked up to the monitors within only a few minutes, and thankfully, I was not in labor.  That was good news, along with the confirmation that Myers had indeed flipped and was no longer in the breech position!  But it was clear that I was in a great deal of pain, and that something was wrong.  After about half an hour had passed, I began to vomit from the pain.  Being that I was not in labor, there was really nothing that the maternity ward could do for me, so we decided to go home for me to tough it out through the night.  The maternity Dr.'s and nurses all agreed that it was one of two things:  1.  A really bad stomach bug or 2.  Kidney stones.   Based on all of the "plumbing" issues that I was having in the bathroom, we were all leaning towards diagnosis number 2.

Ryan and I made it back home shortly before 8pm, just in time to tell Reagan good night.  I tried to go back to bed myself, but had no such luck!  I was up all night in pain, throwing up, and trying unsuccessfully to go pee.  Finally, around 4:00 in the morning when the pain was at it's absolute worst, I was able to go the bathroom!  It hurt like hell and felt oh so good all at the same time.  And then, that was it.  The pain was gone, the nausea was gone... it was all over immediately after I had finally been able to empty my bladder!

The next day, my Dr. confirmed what we all suspected the night before, that she was 99% sure that I had passed a kidney stone during the night.  I still had some minor "plumbing" issues for a couple of days, but I am MUCH better now!

Which brings us to today... the first day of week 32!  By my due date, I have 8 weeks to go, but we all have a feeling that Myers will be a lot like Reagan and come early.  If that is the case, then I have only 6 more weeks to go!  I'm torn because I am one of those women who absolutely LOVE being pregnant.  I love feeling all of his movements and knowing that I am giving him life inside of me.  But on the other hand, I am ready to be done!  This pregnancy has been far more painful, and not just because of the kidney stone.  This little boy has a habit of causing Mommy to be uncomfortable almost ALL OF THE TIME.  He stretches and pushes in ways that Reagan never did, almost to the point of where I think I might pop if he pushes any further.  And the scary thing is that his weight still needs to double what it currently is before he is considered full grown!

I am obviously getting bigger... I had forgotten what it was like for my size 36H boobs to actually look small because my belly is so big!  And it is only going to get bigger!
I guess in the grand scheme of things, even the full 8 weeks until my due date is really not that far away.  It won't be long now until I can hold this little boy in my arms!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The New Chaotic Routine

Last week was "back to school" week for us, but we are no longer functioning on an as easy of a schedule as last year. Reagan is attending the same preschool as last year, but the 4-year old program runs three days a week instead of the two day a week 3-year old schedule. We were all set and ready for her to go Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings, until her gymnastics coach caused a bit of chaos for us.

Reagan has been placed on the competitive gymnastics team this year, and she is the youngest on the team! We are very proud and super excited to begin this journey with her, but it came with conflict... her new training schedule was almost identical to her preschool schedule. At first, we weren't sure what to do because as much as I wanted her in this gymnastics program, her preschool lessons were, and are, my first priority and I didn't want her to have to switch schools. Thankfully, we were able to move from the morning preschool program to the afternoon preschool program, which enables her to be able to do her gymnastics training in the morning.

This is all new, uncharted waters for me. I'm used to sports, competitive or recreational, being more of an "after" school program. From what I have been told, if we continue with her gymnastics training, then Reagan will be missing at least one afternoon of school per week each year once she is in full day school.... which starts next year. For now, we are just taking it one year at a time, and we will see what happens from there!

She was so excited to start her new training at gymnastics, and I was excited to go with her that first day to see what all she would be doing. It surely brought back some memories for me! I was impressed with what all the coaches had her doing at this young age, and I'm anxious to see what new skills she will learn this year.
IMMEDIATELY following her 2 hours at the gym, we went straight to her school. We did a quick change of clothes in the parking lot at the gym, she ate a sandwich on the drive across town, and then ran inside to line up for her first day of 4 year preschool! All this was done with less than 5 minutes to spare! Of course, I did make sure that we had enough time to snap a quick first day of school picture...
It's going to be a crazy year, especially once newborn Myers is added to the mix, but it is what she wants to do!

PS... After only the second day of her new training at gymnastics, Reagan was sporting her first "rip" on her hands. I must say that I was extremely proud when I went to pick her up on day two and she showed me her hand. Rips are an expected part of gymnastics... they happen as a result of using the uneven bars. The friction between the bars and your hands produces a build up of skin, and eventually, this buildup will "rip" off. It's painful, but as a gymnast, she will have to get used to it. She handled her first like a pro... no tears, and I think she was pretty proud of it herself!