Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Vacation Day

I have this week off of school, but since yesterday was a holiday, today felt like my first day of vacation.  I celebrated with brunch with Kate at Bongo Room, which was so much fun.  In addition to not doing housework or laundry during the first trimester, I did no socializing of any kind.  Seeing Kate and catching up was wonderful.  So was breakfast.  I love enjoying eating again!  
This afternoon, I decided to check out our brand new Whole Foods.  
The one closest to home on North Avenue (the one with rats) closed and just across the street opened the third largest Whole Foods in the world, behind only Austin, the flagship store, and London.  The new Chicago store is over 75,000 feet- that's enormous!  It includes 4 or 5 restaurants and more prepared food and salad bars than in one of those all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet restaurants.  (Dad, just check out the coffee bar photo below!)  Just as important in the city, it has free parking.  In addition to my food purchases, I picked up two tomato plants and some herbs to plant in my patio garden.  I'll have to do the planting later this week though, since it started to rain by the time I got them home.  Overall, I have mixed feelings on the new giant Whole Foods.  I'm excited for a larger selection, but I'm nervous that because it's big and shiny and new, everyone and their 12 brothers will be there every weekend.  I might have to keep stopping at the Whole Foods in north Chicago on my commute home to find a better combination of selection and crowd control.  For a Tuesday afternoon, though, it was a fantastic trip.

Monday, May 25, 2009

15 Weeks

Today is 15 weeks!  Depending on  which source you believe, the baby is now either the size of an apple, a navel orange, or a large pear.  Any way you look at it, it's getting bigger!  The big developmental milestones this week are that the baby can now see and react to light, and is now using its respiratory tract to "breathe"  amniotic fluid.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

A turn for the better

This past week has been a great one!  I've been busy eating and cleaning, two things I hadn't done in three months.  Thanks to the eating (and just time passing), my belly is growing bigger.  From my point of view, looking down, it looks enormous already!  I'll post a 15 week picture soon for everyone.  Right now, it's a bit hard to take the picture in the same place as I usually do since my house is full of guests.  We have five of Tyler's business school buddies staying with us this weekend, in from both coasts.  It's been fun to have them here- they are great guys and great friends- but it has temporarily transformed our place into a frat house (there goes my time cleaning...).   Fortunately, I have this week off of school to catch up with more housework and errands and all the relaxing I haven't actually enjoyed recently.  I am really, really appreciating feeling better, and the timing is perfect- the weather here is finally beautiful.  We celebrated with a trip to North Avenue Beach.  Here's my hot baby daddy!

Monday, May 18, 2009

2nd Trimester!

Today is my first day of my second trimester!  I've made it through the first 14 weeks and have 182 days to go.  In this picture I took today at 14 weeks, I'm wearing one of the few pairs of non-elastic-waisted pants that still fit, and that's only because they ride below my belly.  Right now, I'm very thankful for low-waisted pants and flowing peasant tops, my current work uniform.  Once I get home, it's straight to sweats!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Don't judge me for this...

Accomplished this weekend: the first laundry I've done in 3 months; the first cleaning I've done in 3 months; my first hair appointment in 4 months.  I'm not back to 100% yet, but life without constant nausea is wonderful.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Hot off the press...

A picture of me this morning, at 13 weeks 3 days.  It's definitely a belly!!!  I'm still getting used to it...

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

More of what you really want...

A photo journal of my pregnancy so far...
Starting with the pregnancy test!  That plus sign means it's positive.
And another, just to be certain... This one says "Pregnant" very clearly, no room for error.
Tyler at my first doctor's appointment, an ultrasound at just 4 1/2 weeks.  He is the best at keeping the mood light, especially when I'm nervous.
At that appointment, the doctor couldn't see enough to confirm uterine implantation (and not another ectopic pregnancy), so I had another ultrasound at 6 weeks.  I snapped this photo with my iPhone to send it to Tyler right away.  That little dot in the middle of the black space is the baby- about the size of a black bean.
Over my spring break, I visited Grammy and Papa in Tennessee.
For my birthday, Tyler took me to dinner at Spring.  We stopped on our walk home to meet Matt Miazga at Crocodile.
The next day, Mark and Sara treated us to the Cubs-Cardinals game.  We, of course, cheered for the Cards since Tyler and Sara are Cards fans and any rival of the Cubs deserves cheering from a Sox fan.  Here I am on my 27th birthday.
The next weekend, we visited long-time friends Cory and Suzanne and their son Breck in Oregon and went snowshoeing in the mountains.
The next weekend, we went with Mark and Sara to the Kentucky Derby, their Christmas gifts to us.
Last weekend was Mother's Day.  We went to Bloomington on Saturday and Mark's apartment for Brunch on Sunday, wishing both our moms a Happy Day.  
This weekend, we are staying home.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Folic Acid for everyone!

From the LA Times:

Folic acid may help prevent premature birth, study finds

Taking folate supplements for a year before conception cuts the chance of pre-term birth by at least 50%, according to research. Experts suggest all women of child-bearing age take multi-vitamins.
Here's the rest of the article.  The good news?  I've been taking folic acid in addition to my multivitamin for over a year!  


My turn next.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day! 
As I was wishing a friend a happy Mother's Day,  I slowly came to a string of realizations: next year, I'll be a mom on Mother's Day; for the rest of my Mother's Days, I'll be a mom; I'll be a mother for the rest of my life.  
When I told Tyler about my moment of clarity (not that it's all that genius), he asked if I was freaking out about things that I hadn't done yet or want to do before motherhood. For me, it's not that at all- I feel I have some great experiences under my belt and I am in no way concerned that motherhood will keep me from anything I want to do in the future.  The reason the thought struck me so deeply is that once I give birth, my life will never, ever be the same.  "Mom" is a title I'll have for the rest of my life.  The only other life event I've experienced that is somewhat similar is marriage, when I took on the title of "Mrs. Nevius" for the rest of my life.  Just as when I was engaged, I am terrifically excited to accept my new title- sure, a little nervous about some of the details, but ready to grab Tyler's hand and jump in with both feet.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Thursday night rambling

Tyler's home!  Last night, I received the sweetest email from the partner Tyler works for.  He went into detail about how important it is for Tyler to be at my appointments and how Tyler shouldn't miss any part of becoming a dad.  He asked me to schedule the rest of my appointments on Mondays or Fridays so Tyler can come.  The email was unexpected, and all the more appreciated. We're really fortunate that Tyler works for someone who is so understanding of the situation- he and his wife just had their second son in early March.  
Tyler and I went around the corner to a new Mexican restaurant that opened Monday.  Tyler kept pushing the chips and guacamole towards me and encouraging me to eat more.  We found out yesterday that I actually lost weight during my first trimester.  It's nothing unusual or worrisome- many women with morning sickness have the same issue.  Amazing how flu-like symptoms for 3 months will do that to a person...  One upside is that it proves that my little belly is all "baby" and not a collection of carb calories from the first trimester.  The other upside is that now Tyler is trying to encourage me to gain weight- a first!  
Even though I feel leaps and bounds better than mid-first-trimester, I still have some food issues.  I'm not constantly nauseous any longer, but I have some crazy food aversions- often to every food in sight.  I've been gagging on some of my favorite foods when I try to eat them anyway, so my solution for now is just to go with whatever doesn't make me gag.  Sunday morning at breakfast, it was onion rings.  The other night, it was Indian samosas (pastries stuffed with
 curried potatoes and vegetables) and pickles, a meal I knew was so weird I should probably document my behavior for later chuckles, even though this pic really just makes me hungry (note the prenatal vitamins!).  My breakfasts have been hardest to figure out since I'm gagging on granola in any form and smoothies, two staples.  So, recently, it's been a banana (frozen, dipped in chocolate, served on a stick- still, a banana!) and frozen blueberries (eaten with my fingers during my commute, leaving me with purple fingers for the remainder of the day). 
Traye asked me last night if I am getting any weird food cravings yet.  I told him about the samosas and pickles, which he classified as weird.  Really, I'm not sure they're cravings.  I think it's just a small collection of food items that have slipped through the aversion cracks, which, by the way, are constantly changing.  I think I'm going to go get some of that mango sherbet out of the freezer before I go to bed...

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Thump Thump

At my midwife appointment today, I had a chance to hear the baby's heartbeat!  It was such a sweet experience.  Hearing the heartbeat was such a strong reassurance for me, too, that everything is still growing the way it is supposed to be.  Experiences like that help me argue against the thoughts of "Is this really happening?" that I still have so often.   
My midwife, Jennifer, is really wonderful (http://awomansplacechicago.com/index.html).  She makes me feel completely comfortable and is totally patient with all my new-mom concerns.  An appointment with Jennifer is a complete 180 from my previous appointments with ob/gyns in Chicago- she actually schedules herself for at least a half hour with every patient, and today's appointment was a full hour so we would have time to talk about the new pregnancy and, as she put it, spend some important time bonding (I have never once heard an ob/gyn say that!).  At the end of every visit, she hugs me goodbye in a way that feels sincere and natural.  Perhaps most importantly, at today's visit, I received the number for the "Bat phone," as Jennifer called it- her personal cell phone number, available to me 24 hours a day.  As grateful as I am for it, I hope I don't need to use it until November!
Jennifer said everything looks great!  I have my next appointment June 2 at 16 weeks.  The appointment after that one will be a big one- my 20 week ultrasound, when we'll find out whether our little kiddo is a boy or a girl.  Now that we've decided to find out, I can't wait.  It feels a bit like cheating to me still, but I'm sure I'll get over that by week 20!  After that, I'll have to find a new reason to not buy baby clothes...  I just realized that by week 20, I should be able to feel the baby kicking already.  I'm really looking forward to regular signs the baby is doing well- alive and kicking.  It has to feel real then, right?

Monday, May 4, 2009

Is this for real?

Here begins the chronicling of a lifelong journey- motherhood, beginning with the pregnancy of my first child.  I don't know yet what this blog will come to be, but I expect it to change as much as I do with time.  It will be a place to mark milestones and celebrate many firsts.  
Today's milestone: I told my entire team at work that I'm pregnant today.  The teaching assistants already knew-- not only is it harder to hide things from people who see you all day, every day, but they needed to know why I might be suddenly sprinting to the bathroom mid-teaching.  It was important that I tell the rest of the team (including occupational and speech therapists) so we can switch out whenever necessary, hopefully avoiding any punches, kicks, or headbutts to the stomach.  The team I work with is great, and everyone is really excited for me and very understanding.
I posted a photo of my little belly at 11 weeks (1 week ago).  It looks like I just had a big meal, but it was taken before breakfast- so it's all baby!  Or, more accurately, the stuff that goes with a baby, but I won't get into those details.  At 11 weeks, the baby is only the size of a large strawberry.  Now that I'm at 12 weeks (today is 12 weeks, 1 day, to be exact), the baby is the size of a lime.  
The lime comparison was a real milestone for us since the previous weeks' comparisons were all pretty weak- we had a couple weeks in a row of kumquat and fig, neither of which Tyler recognized as being real fruits.  But a lime?  That's a real fruit.  I still find myself trying to convince myself that this is actually happening, that I'm really pregnant, that there's really a little baby growing in my stomach.  
Tomorrow will be another first: hearing the baby's heartbeat at my appointment.  I'm thinking that will make everything feel pretty real, even if only for a few minutes.


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