Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Lately...tears and fears

This week I have had 2 people reach out and ask if I have had a baby since "all's quiet on the western front." And by western front, I mean the ever increasing hole my pa-took is burning into the mattress.

Ute-still occupied! 32 weeks and counting.

One would think that the time spent in bed would reward me with lots of time to use pent up "strategery" and compose brilliant posts and updates. Interestingly, I am on my work computer more, and tend to only want to engage with the virtual world on an "as needed" basis. So outside of streaming Top Chef the day after it airs (shhh! don't tell me if my favorite Kish wins, m'kay?), I tend not to have my personal computer open for business.

Hmmm...strike that. My friend Amy just sent me a link to watch all seasons of Dowton Abbey.

Plus, bedrest is lonely.

I don't have impromptu live conversations with people during a normally functioning day (ie, outside of my bedroom). Life tends to be me snapping at whoever dares to enter my room because, well, I am kind of in a stalemate with my "good mommy/wife/daughter/friend" persona.

So I operate in a "Sybilian" world (made up) and have lots of conversations in my head with myself. And because we all want to look through the double paned glass when we walk by the Cuckoo's Nest, here is what has crossed my mind lately that has either made me cry, worry, or both. It's like those weekly roundup posts more composed, bathed, and put together bloggers do. I call it, "Lately: tears and fears." (Subtitle, stuff I found while lobotomizing Ali's brain)
  • "Shugah"
    • I failed my 1 hour oral glucose tolerance test, boo! Tears.
    • I passed the 3 hour, yay!
    • Note to preggers: demand your glucose drink be chilled like a good bottle of Cristal. And actually say that to them--"I only pop properly chilled bottles...can you put that on ice?"
    • Bee tee dubs: the 1 hr drink has 50 mg glucose. The 3 hour drink in the same size bottle? 100mg. You *may* need Doogie Howser to walk you back to an exam room to lie down during the last hour because you are threatening to vaso vagal on the waiting room couch or puke.
  • Weight Woes
    • I still have guilt about my current diet (thanks Halloween, T-day, Christmas, New Years, F's birthday, my birthday, Eric's birthday and V-day), and fear that the 1 hr failure was because I'm growing the State Puff Marshmallow baby. Although, according to the courtesy 3D ultrasound I had on Friday, I am going to deliver a baby who looks exactly like Eric. Maury, no paternity test needed. It's so uncanny, my mother gasped at the mugshot/profile--"It's Eric! Without glasses!"In the unlikely event it is a girl, we may need to fit the baby with a mask. I love me some Eric...he just doesn't make a pretty girl.
  • Baby Fears
    • I feel like whenever I agonize over something, another more talented and well known blogger does me the courtesy to write about it. And to that I say: "word!" Kate at This Place is Now a Home, just blogged about current fears while she is pregnant (whoo hoo! she's pregnant!). The past 2 weeks, I started the spectrum of fears:
        • Benign Fear: What if I can't lose this baby weight chocolate and bedrest have awarded me?
        • Reasonable Fear: What if this extra weight gain translates into a 10lb baby that tears me from here to Uranus?
        • Unreasonable Fear: What if this said 10lb baby can't control his/her blood sugar, and I have to supplement with formula and can never breastfeed? And so by the transitive property of the third trimester fears, GAINING WEIGHT = INABILITY TO BREASTFEED. And the only way to assuage my mathematical with dark chocolate Dove candy. Clearly.
        • Unfair Fear: What if this baby really is ugly like that Seinfeld episode? Not sure I really want a baby coming out and looking exactly like a 32-year-old history teacher. Especially if there is facial hair involved.
        • Ashamed Fear: What if I made the biggest mistake of my life by having a 3rd child? I do need to comment that part of this comes from feeling overwhelmed with this actually happening in the next few weeks. Part of it feels like Miles's and Felix's lives will suffer.  And heck, my marriage. And part of me feels a sense of defense and anger towards what I consider some unintentional hurtful comments from people that have ranged in topic and issue. One of which was that perhaps my pregnancy difficulties, both past and present, are a signs from God (that apparently I ignored after Miles and Felix) that I shouldn't have more children and our family is "done." Apparently I missed that heavenly memo after my first pregnancy and just ignored it the 2nd time? Also, I know I only have 2 hands and will now be outnumbered, but please don't set me up for failure and already tell me how hard it is and how you would never have 3 children. Smooches. Love ya. Thanks for the support.
  • Toddler Fears
    • Felix was (thankyousweetjeebus) potty trained at 2, but at a little over 3 now, still saturates his pants during naps and overnight. Luckily, he's pretty good at taking off his "urine peplum" each morning, and it isn't that much of an inconvenience, but I am just not sure what to do about nighttime wetting.
        • Benign Fear: What if he is still wearing an overnight diaper over the next year?
        • Reasonable Fear: What if he isn't nap trained by preK when it is expected? 
        • Unreasonable Fear: What if he isn't nighttime trained by elementary school, and doesn't get invited over for sleepovers because he is known as a "bed wetter?" so by the transitive property of potty training: BED WETTER = NO FRIENDS.
        • Unfair/Selfish Fear: What if I still have to spend money on diapers for Felix for another couple of years, which could be spent on other things like Dove dark chocolate?
        • Ashamed Fear: What if this is all a result of the emotional torture we went through potty training Miles? While I know this isn't true, I can't help but think there was some damage done by osmosis.
  • PreK Fears
    • With the wise counsel of Miles's preK teachers and going with our gut, we have decided to have Miles repeat preK prior to going to Kindergarten. merelymothers recently had a post on the stress of electing a preschool/preK for your child. To which I say again, "word!" I'm overwhelmed with the current process. Miles is young, small, and needs more time to develop socially before we throw him to the wolves. So we are looking at young 5's type of programs, but trying to make one that works with my professional schedule (Eric has zero flexibility given he is a teacher) and at a cost that won't put us into foreclosure has been a battle.
        • Benign Fear: Miles is so picky, what if he doesn't eat the provided lunch at whatever school we choose?
        • Reasonable Fear: What if I can't make the schedule work with mine and I lose health benefits because I can't work 35 hours a week?
        • Unreasonable Fear: What if this random year at a random school doesn't allow Miles to make friends, and he turns into a loner, which then makes him more likely to commit heinous crimes when he is older? And so by the transitive property of 4-year-old nervosity: YEAR AT RANDOM SCHOOL = FUTURE CRIMINAL. Okay, I know this sounds extreme, but I seriously worry about this...the accused of the crimes I am gently referencing over the past years have all had a common denominator: males who tend to be loners. So, yeah, I worry.
        • Bottom line/Ashamed Fear: What if we are making the biggest mistake of his life by repeating this year? This child has been exposed to a lot of transition and change in his life. And for a kid who is an innate rule follower and pretty much afraid of, well, everything, it kills me to think I am doing him "wrong"...God give him the strength to be resilient. (right after you send me that 3rd memo telling me that I shouldn't have more children after this one. I might listen if you throw in a free vasectomy.)
In closing, I want to both acknowledge how blessed I am to be on good medications and bedrest, as it all seems to be working, but also acknowledge that bedrest is overwhelming. I've been asked if "being waited on hand and foot is a luxury" and to that I say, absolutely not. I've spent weeks, now, watching life continue and my family operate without much participation on my end. So my recommendation for anyone supporting people on bedrest is just to be mindful of the emotional fortitude it requires. Please be gentle with us bed riders; we are a hormonal bunch.

To everyone who has stepped up and stepped in to provide childcare, meals, "pick me up" gifts, calls, texts, I cannot thank you enough...but please don't take offense if my acknowledgements and thank you notes are delayed.

The truth is, while intellectually I am capable of shouting to the world that all of these years of tears, fears, and complicated pregnancies are worth it, right now it may take me a little more time to believe it.

Week 33, here I come.


  1. awww! i'll bet anything that's a boy. looks like a boy. but i'm sure if it IS a girl, she'll be adorable. (covering my ass there.)

  2. Oh Ali. These are all such real and relatable fears. You are not alone! (And now I have some new ones to add to my list).

    Also? I have no experience beyond age 2 1/2 re: potty training, but I was listening to a webinar on it the other night and the very wise instructor said that some kids (boys especially) are simply physically incapable of staying dry while sleeping until age 5. 5! FIVE. You've got plenty of time. So, I know it's easier said than done, but do your best to take that one off your list. You've got bigger fish to fry.

    Hats off to you for sticking it out (not that you have much choice, but really, you are an incredibly strong woman to withstand what you are without going completely crazy). It will all be worth it once this little guy/gal arrives (I don't know Eric, but the eyes look a lot like Felix!) and your life can resume to normal.

    Err, nothing like normal at all. New normal.

  3. Who the hell is asking you about being pampered on bedrest?! I think of you every day. I applaud your honesty in this post - I'm sure lots of us can relate to your tears and fears but not so many of us share them.

    Please watch downton so we can discuss, although I would maybe save Season 3 until after Baby 3.0 is born :) Love you!

  4. I love you so much. I'm so proud of you, and I know bed rest is no cakewalk. You are handling it like a champ! I think about you every single day as well and I'm so excited to meet the little one when he/she arrives. You are an amazing sister and Mommy! I wished I lived closer so I could give you foot rubs and watch Downton with you. (it's addictive)

  5. Oh my, you just verbalized so many of my fears and my baby is six weeks old!! I constantly fear that I won't be able to nurse her as long as my son, that something will just happen to end my supply or her latch or.... And I'm so afraid she's not getting the attention he got because I'm splitting my time, and I'm afraid that my son feels bad all the time because he's being told "no" a lot when he's not gentle with her..the list goes on and on... I just wrote about it here.
    As always, thanks for the shout out. I think of you all the time and am so happy you have come this far! You are almost there! Good wishes and hugs!!
    - Sarah