I don't know how to tell you all just how crazy this life feels

Archive for July, 2011

37w0d

37 weeks officially. Actually, it was yesterday, but I’m still going by the Sunday date change because I’m too lazy to change my tickers and it’s close enough. 37 weeks means I can go into labour at any time now, and it’s all okay. I am still hoping for another two weeks at least though, to give me time to finish work as planned (much as I’d love to not have to go anymore, especially with feeling sore and tired and useless, when I think of not being able to officially say goodbye to my clients, it makes me very sad) and then have a week off to get some stuff finished.

I installed the car seat into my car last week, which I think was pretty straightforward. I was very concerned about doing it without help from someone who knows what they’re doing because I keep hearing that most people don’t have it installed properly, but it seems pretty easy to me. It doesn’t move, the little leveler on the car seat itself is where it’s supposed to be, so I’m not sure what else would need to be done to make sure it’s right (except making sure the baby is strapped in properly, but that’s a bit hard right now :P). I’m not really sure why other people can’t seem to figure it out and most are installed improperly. Maybe people don’t pull the straps tight enough and it moves a bit too much for regulations? That’s the only thing I can really think of since that seems to be the hardest part.

I went to a breastfeeding class at the hospital last week as well, which wasn’t a lot of new information, but was useful in that they showed us a video that showed real women with real babies and real boobs latching on and how to get a good latch, etc. It was a lot easier to know what to do when you can see it happen, rather than drawings or just talking about it. I also got the numbers of places you can call for help and stuff like that, which is good. It’s too bad it’s not something you can practice ahead of time, and could be affected by other factors. I just hope I get good, realistic support if I need it rather than boob nazis who are totally against formula even when it’s needed. I’d like to give it my all and I’m willing to do a lot… but if it’s not working out, I don’t want someone stressing me out even more.

Went to my parents’ after the class and visited and on Sunday morning my mom and I went out and I bought some nursing bras (some for day time and some for night time), so I’m all set in that regard (at least to start), or will be as soon as I wash them up. It was actually less awful than most bra shopping since they’re designed to be soft and comfortable, plus there are only limited numbers of them so you’re not completely overwhelmed with choice. Once you find your size, you’re good to go, assuming that at least one of them fits well. And then I guess you have to hope that your boobs don’t get so gigantic that they don’t fit anymore, I guess. Or your ribs don’t shrink dramatically (mine have gone up two band sizes over the pregnancy) and you stop fitting them really quickly. At least they’reΒ  not super expensive, so buying new ones in a different size isn’t as gigantic a financial investment as some other bras are.

My ankles have been swollen the last week or so, partly because of the humidity I think. What makes it worse is that I’m on my feet in running shoes most of the day when I’m at work, so I don’t have a lot of time to elevate them. I’ve been making a point to do so (made easier by the fact that I’m really trying to sit back and let my replacement do everything) but I feel really strange sitting with my legs up on another chair while everyone else runs around. We’re lucky to have a lot of volunteers and stuff right now, so there’s not a whole lot I’d be doing anyway, but it feels very strange. I’m definitely not a sit around and let everyone else do everything kind of person, I much prefer to be in there and doing stuff. In any case, I have understanding co-workers and my clients are thrilled that I’m taking it more easy. One of the things I am looking forward to with not being pregnant anymore is being able to do all those things again without being yelled at πŸ˜›

Some of the things I still need/want to do before baby gets here:

– finish packing hospital bag

– set up basinette in bedroom and put pack n play together on main floor

– make/buy/somehow acquire food that is easy to heat up for the days and weeks after baby is born. Is there a company that does stuff like this? I think you could make a killing if you could provide healthy, tasty meals for exactly this purpose.

– Pick up final things from registry that we need, like breast pads, a sound machine (I’m thinking I want to get this and set it up now so I can get used to it, I think it might actually help with some of my sleep issues as well as any the baby might have), etc.

– Organize nursery so it’s less of a storage area, put larger sized clothes away in bin(s) to be pulled out later, etc. This is the item I’m least looking forward to for some reason.

I think perhaps he has started to drop, since I can now eat larger portions of food than I could before, although I don’t feel the constant pressure down below that a lot of people describe (it’s still very transient) and I still have issues breathing sometimes (it was never a constant thing anyway), plus my belly hasn’t changed shape and he is still definitely all up in my ribs, though maybe he still would be because of the lack of room. Last night once again I definitely felt a foot, and he’s taken to running his feet along my rib cage, which is an interesting feeling. I am definitely crampier down low through my cervix and lower belly, but that’s been mostly when he’s moving and I assume trying to stretch out a bit. I’m not sure if that’s part of it or not.

TMI alert! Some of the signs that labour are approaching are listed as baby dropping, CM becoming more mucousy and heavier, more intense BH, and loose bowels. Not sure about the baby dropping yet (though as I said, I suspect at the very least that it’s underway, if it hasn’t happened fully yet), but my discharge is looking different the last few days, I definitely have the stronger BH (yay), and my bowels have been looser than usual more consistently the past little bit.

The weird part is seeing these changes doesn’t make me all nervous or panicky like it used to. I’m not sure if it’s a psychological thing because I’m now far enough along that it’s supposed to happen, or if it’s a hormonal thing where you are just more prepared because you have to be, or what. In any case, I’m glad because I was so afraid I’d still feel as terrified of it all as I did before, but I’m actually excited. My body is supposed to be doing this and it is! How amazing!

There is still some nervousness, obviously, since it’s an unknown and all, but overall I’m feeling excited and looking forward to finally feeling what it’s like and to finally meeting our little guy. I’m still sad to be leaving the pregnancy part behind… but I’m feeling more ready for that too, both physically but also emotionally ready to have experienced the whole thing and to move on. I’m still enjoying it and I know there will be things that I will miss, but having completed the whole thing (hopefully successfully with a healthy baby at the end!) I feel so happy and grateful to have been able to do that, even if I only ever get to do it this once.

I wish everyone, especially those who are experiencing IF, would get to experience this. Sometimes I wonder if I should be reading the online forum anymore because there are so many sad stories and I start to feel guilty that I’ve been so lucky (although how sad is it that I’m considered one of the really lucky ones?) and I feel like I shouldn’t be there anymore because of that. But at the same time, reading their stories reminds me of where I came from (not that it takes much) and when someone is successful, I’m so much happier for them because I know exactly how they’re feeling and how amazing it all is. And to be able to support those who are finding that actually achieving pregnancy isn’t the end of it all like we might have thought, that it’s actually just the beginning and then the game changes and becomes different. And it’s still full of people who truly understand the miracle of it all a lot more than anywhere else I’ve found.

35w5d

Holy crap. Day before yesterday was July 20th. I am due August 20th. Someone told me that the third trimester went by really slowly, but I find it’s just flying by and I can’t believe it’s already two thirds gone by.

This week I have been quite sore and tired. My groin has been hurting a fair bit, though it’s mostly when I first get up and then it loosens up a bit. My back hurts when I lean over too much, and it’s often up higher on my back, not just my lower, which is sort of weird. I’m really used to low back soreness since I have it even without being pregnant, but the upper is different. I have lots of cervix pressure and stabs of pain, which I’m guessing are mostly him headbutting me or moving in that area. I have some stabbing pains higher up than my cervix that I assume is also him moving. I often feel him pushing up top and down low at the same time, which is new over the past week or so, now that he’s big enough. I used to occasionally get it but it was more kicks at that point, not the steady pressure that I get now when he’s stretching out. My mom said I used to stretch out a lot too, so I guess this is payback for that πŸ˜‰

More of his movements are painful or uncomfortable, mostly when he’s right in my ribs or if he’s sticking sharp parts into me. On Tuesday I think it was he had his toes or heels or something pressed into me constantly, which got sore after a while, and then to make things worse he’d then push up in the same spot with the same sharp and pointy thing. That was fun.

Up until now I haven’t really been able to identify many body parts aside from his bum (which was confirmed by the ultrasound) and I could tell when it was his feet kicking me, but that was mostly because it wasn’t his bum and what else would it be right there? Yesterday I very distinctly felt a heel in my ribs. Don’t ask me how I know because I’m not even sure, but it was most definitely his heel.

Sitting is more difficult because it feels like he’s more often than not right under my ribs, which means I can’t bend forward even more than before, which is not much. BH are more intense, though there are still some that I don’t feel much. I get these menstrual-like cramps down low sometimes that come and go, probably something to do with ligaments stretching or baby moving or something.

We did our maternity pictures on Tuesday with the photographer from our wedding. She was a lot of fun, as she was at the wedding. She had a baby boy in January; he’s super cute. We went down to a lakefront part at the end of her street and walked around a bunch and did a bunch of different pictures. I can’t wait to see them — if even half of them are as good as our wedding pictures, we won’t be disappointed. The biggest problem with getting them is that from straight-on, it’s not very obvious that I’m pregnant. From the side, totally obvious. But my belly is so straight out and round and compact that it doesn’t look like much if you’re not looking at me from an angle. I guess it’s not really helped that I haven’t put on weight anywhere else, although then maybe I’d just end up looking fat. If I don’t already πŸ˜‰

She seemed impressed that I was able to walk around the whole park without resting (well, except for all the pictures) and I was able to get down to the ground and up again with minimal assistance. Meanwhile I feel like I’m the least agile and flexible person in the world and she’s calling me YogaMom. Apparently during the last part of her pregnancy she couldn’t even walk down the street, let alone all over a park, so I guess it’s mostly relative. I notice my lack of flexibility and agility because I’m so used to having it. I get comments at work about my walking fast or “running”, but I thought they were just slowpokes because I feel soooooo sloooooow, but maybe I am still pretty quick comparatively. It also does depend a bit on how my groin is feeling at the time though πŸ˜‰

Saw my MW on Wednesday and did that GBS testing (swabbing vagina, perineum, and rectum for certain bacteria). I was afraid of having to do it since I can’t exactly see down there anymore and thought I’d have to be exact where I put the swab, but she assured me that the more things I touch, the better since they really want to know if you carry this bacteria so they can give you the antibiotics accordingly. My fundus is measuring a week behind still, but since the u/s came back okay, I’m not too concerned. It’s still going up at a steady pace and it wasn’t a problem with the other MWs so maybe she’s just a weird measurer or something. I’ve seen her for the last three or four appointments, so if it’s a thing with her measuring, I wouldn’t necessarily know unless I saw someone else who got a higher number.

Also on Wednesday, we got together with the friend who’s given us all the clothes and she gave us her old infant car seat that her son just outgrew. We have one from other friends as well, but were also offered this one, so we figured we might put one in each car and then just coordinate which seat to take depending on the car or buy a second base if we ended up liking one better, whatever. When we got home, we compared them… and it turns out they’re the same seat, just different colours! Which means we have two bases now. And we can either use one or the other, or else switch back and forth, or when he gets a bit bigger and maybe we don’t want to take the seats out of the car anymore, we can just have one in each car and not have to constantly move things around. Score!

The hospital told us that if we go to the Fire Department, they’ll help us install or at least inspect our installation and give us a sticker of approval and then they won’t bug us when we want to go home. I phoned the local FD and they don’t do that anymore. At my MW appointment, a girl was there with her 13 day old baby (oh my god! So small!) and she was giving me some random advice, and then when we were both leaving she saw I didn’t have a car seat in my car yet, she said I should do it soon and that the Police Department in Scarborough (she cited a division number) would do it. So I phoned them, and they don’t do it anymore either. When did this change? Like last month? I wonder if she attended a clinic or something. There are some in our area, but we’ve missed the ones for July and the ones in August aren’t for another few weeks, which I feel is too late to leave it to, though we could sign up and go whether we’ve had the baby yet or not. I know installing it isn’t hard, but when you hear that so many people do it wrong, I just want to know that someone who knows what they’re doing have looked at it.

I think I said it or something similar before, but I feel like I might be on the brink of the “okay, baby can come any time now” feeling. I keep forgetting that my belly is so big and I keep hitting things with it, which hurts because it’s always the very end and my belly button is sensitive and sore. When I lay down I feel like a beached whale (I’m officially there!) and having to move around is quite difficult. During our pictures, any time we had to get down on the ground, I made my husband get down first and then she would move him around to get the best light and then I would get down so I didn’t have to shift around as much. It was hard enough not squishing my poor belly without having to also move around πŸ˜› I’m starting to think more about how nice it’ll be to be getting back to normal – to sleeping on my back, to being able to roll over without moaning and groaning, to getting up and down more easily, to being more flexible, to having room for food and poop!

I think once I hit 37 weeks that feeling will solidify too because then at least he’ll be full term and it won’t be a bad thing to go into labour. I’d like him to hang on until I’ve had some time off preferably though.

I definitely feel very differently about the idea of having a baby than I did even a few weeks ago. There’s definitely a lot more excitement, even about actual labour (although with some nervousness and worry), and I can’t wait to see what he looks like and find out who he takes after and all that. It’s like I’m getting ready to be ready to leave this phase and move onto the next one with less sadness about that than I would have had not too long ago. There will be lots of stuff I will miss, but I feel more ready for the next thing now.

How crazy hot is it today? My car was reading 41 at one point. It was 26 when I left the house before 7:30 and was 31 by 8:00. I’m not sure if we officially beat the heat record of hottest ever in TO, but we did beat the warmest low temperature of the day, with 26 at 6am or something like that. Thank goodness for having a/c at home, in my car, and at work. My husband’s car’s a/c broke a few months ago and we haven’t gotten it fixed because it’s so expensive and because it hasn’t been that hot. He had plans to go shopping with a friend to pick up stuff for their camping this weekend and I told him to wait until I got home and then he could take my car. I just think it’s dangerous to drive for any length of time without a/c, especially when you’re hot like my husband is to begin with.

I’ve actually been okay in the heat — as a cold person, I think my body temperature might be hovering around normal person territory, which means I’m hot when it’s hot, but I’m not overly hot the rest of the time (unless I’m having hot flashes, though those have been minimal, knock on wood) so unlike a lot of pregnant women, I’m not starting off boiling hot. I’m also okay with the a/c being lower and actually find a lot of places too cold still. Yay for being a cold person!

34w5d

Had my ultrasound yesterday, which went well. She says everything looks great and no worries.

Highlights:
– He’s head down. Yay!
– He weighs between 4.5 and 5 pounds.
– His overall size is average (exactly 50th percentile), but his head is “a bit big” and his legs are a bit short, which is exactly my husband’s body type πŸ˜› (Actually, she said his torso is also short, which isn’t like my husband, but it’s funnier to say it without that πŸ˜› I imagine he’ll grow into it, and I’m not too concerned about the “big” head since those measurements are notoriously wrong and she didn’t gasp or anything and subtly hint I might want a c section).
– He’s still a boy.

So all is good. My guess for the reason why my MW was wrong is because he tends to move around a lot when he gets touched, so since she was always the second one, maybe after being poked and prodded by the student, he moved in such a way (curled into a ball maybe?) that made it more difficult to tell. That’s what I choose to believe, rather than think she doesn’t know what she’s doing, especially since she’s the one I like the most πŸ˜›Β  (though really, as long as she knows all the birth stuff, I don’t care if she can’t tell a head from a bum).

We just returned from Walmart where we got a bunch of the last stuff we need in order to be ready to go.

We bought diapers. And wipes. You have no idea how amazing that concept is to me. We. Us. Need diapers.

Hahahaha. That sentence didn’t sound the way I wanted it to πŸ˜›

Even though we’re doing cloth, we still need disposables for the first few days, plus to use as backups. Hopefully he won’t outgrow the small size before we use them – it’s hard to judge and guess how many you’ll go through and all that, especially while trying to figure things out at first.

What I did not like buying was the pads for me in preparation for all the bleeding afterwards. I picked up a pack of adult diapers since I’ve heard that you bleed a lot at first and a lot of people say to take old underwear that you don’t mind bleeding all over and stuff, but I’ve also heard it suggested that you just buy the underwear kind and then there’s no worries about ruining all your undies. Sounds good to me. And then regular pads should be okay, though depending on how that is I might use my cloth pads since they’re so much more comfy, especially long term, but we’ll see how heavy it is and all. There’s also something psychological about it — kind of like how I never used my cloth pads when I was miscarrying, even when they could have easily handled it, it just seemed wrong somehow.

It’s been so long since I bought any kind of disposable menstrual product, things have really changed. I know they used to change the packaging constantly when I did use them regularly, but when you go years between purchases (I’ve quite literally bought maybe two packages in the last 8 or 9 years), it seems like it’s all different except for some of the brand names. Very confusing.

You know, it’s not that I dread my actual period so much, it’s never been that much of a problem for me as for lots of other people (minimal cramping for the most part, not terribly heavy flow where I’m ruining all my clothes or anything like that), particularly with the cloth pads being so comfortable, it’s just that it’s been the bringer of bad news for so many years that I have trouble wrapping my head around the fact that it might actually not be that way for at least a while. I realize that the first one isn’t really a period and then if you’re breastfeeding it can keep it away for a while longer, but for so long any sign of blood has been such a bad thing, I can’t imagine feeling neutral about it or not caring. It might be kind of nice to have a regular cycle without that hoping for it not to come for a while.

You guys. We bought DIAPERS. For a BABY. OUR baby. Who is coming soon. Wow.

34w1d

My weekly “you’re x weeks” from yesterday email said that I have a month left. WHATWHATWHAT?! It’s from the UK so either they count differently, or else they figure that most people deliver at or before 38 weeks? I’m not sure which.

The day before yesterday I was feeling really uncomfortable. Shortly after I got up I was having some pains in my lower belly, not unlike period cramps but not quite either. They came and went a few times and I was starting to wonder if I was actually going into labour, but then they stopped. To be fair, every new pain like that makes me wonder if I’m going into labour so it probably doesn’t say a whole lot about what I was feeling. I get gas cramps or feel like I have to poop and I idly wonder since that’s how a lot of people describe their first labour pains πŸ˜›

After that I was just feeling not very good and then when I was sitting down writing thank you cards for the shower, I started feeling lightheaded so I had to stop. It would go away when I would stand up or lay down somewhere else, but then would return soon after I sat down again. At the rate I’m going, they’ll never get done because I keep feeling uncomfortable πŸ˜› (Actually, I sat down again yesterday morning to work on them and I think I’ve finished them now, though I was starting to feel bad again towards the end).

I ended up laying down for a little over an hour and took a nap and stuff and felt a lot better, so not sure what was up with that. My guess is baby was just in a bad position and making me really uncomfortable and then he moved so I felt better, plus the sleeping helped since I was really tired.

We did some stuff for my husband’s birthday, including going out for drinks with some friends and then to dinner with different friends (drinks friends had dinner plans already), so I was glad to be feeling better since I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to join them. I have enough trouble getting comfy in restaurants at the best of times, let alone when I’m having a lot of issues with that. I was getting uncomfortable at points, but the good part about being pregnant is that no one bugs you if you want to stand around in weird positions πŸ˜› (I find bending forward and leaning on tables or chairs can help ease my backache, probably both because it gets it in a different position and shifts baby around a bit).

Yesterday my husband was off for his last trip before the baby is born, which makes me glad. I’m starting to worry about going into labour unexpectedly, so having him within Get-Here-NOW distance is reassuring. I’m not really used to feeling that – I mean, I’m never thrilled when he goes away but most of the time it is what it is. Now I feel like I have to think about a backup plan, if I go into labour while he’s away, what do I do? Well, besides call my midwife right away since I’m still before 37 weeks πŸ˜›

I wondering if the baby flipped around again since the night before last I was feeling like I had a bellyful of kittens all wiggling around like crazy and then I had the lightheaded issues yesterday, which my chiropractor and I have been wondering if it’s his head pressing on a blood vessel, and then I didn’t have it for a while and my MW started saying he was head up and blah blah, so maybe it’s him in head down position that does it? I’m totally speculating here just for fun.

I think I’ve hit the 3rd trimester fatigue finally, I’m feeling a lot more sleepy these days. Not as bad as the first trimester, but not as energetic as I have been. I guess better than getting that burst of energy that signals prelabour πŸ˜› If/when I get that, it’ll be pretty obvious!

Today I’ve had a lot more cervix pressure and feeling like it’s irritated (similar to that prickly feeling when you have a UTI) which is a lot worse when I walk, which I do a lot at work. Luckily it’s my replacement’s time to take over programs with me just as support, so I was able to sit down a lot and just be in the sidelines for a good portion of the day, which helped a lot. That in combination with the feeling yucky on the weekend makes me wonder if I’m about to hit the “okay, I’m ready for this to be over” pretty soon. I guess I’ve been lucky it’s taken so long and I’ve been relatively discomfort and pain-free most of the time. My right hip has been really bothering me last night and today, no matter what I was doing. When I was driving to and from work it was bothering me then too, making me wonder if I was have sciatica pain or if it was just my hip continuing to hurt.

My belly was just literally rocking back and forth very forcefully. Very odd. Wish I’d been able to capture it on video.

I don’t think I wrote about my last appointment. I saw the student again, and she still says he’s head down and the MW still says he’s head up. There is also a discrepancy between my fundal height, though that is partially because the student was measuring the baby and not the top of the uterus. In any case, they are sending me for an ultrasound, which I scheduled for this week Thursday, though I’m not sure what it’ll tell them since apparently they can still flip around and move around. I’m not sure if he’s head down, if that means he won’t be flipping back up, or what. But it seems like if he can go one way, he could go the other if he really wanted to. In any case, I am not upset about having to go since I haven’t seen him since 18 weeks and would love to take another peek, especially if it’s a short one. I’m hoping they’ll be able to give me an idea of what size he is, although I’ve heard that’s notoriously unreliable. So I guess the highlight is to hopefully see him (or parts of him since he’s too big to see on one screen now) again.

We did a tour of the L&D ward at the hospital last week as well, which was good to do. Now we know where it is and what to expect to find there. The rooms are large and I can have up to two guests (husband/birth partner isn’t included in that count, he’s assumed to be there) so that means that if I want to call my mom to come help out, I can. We’re leaving that decision to the time of, but it’s good to know that it’s a possibility.

I’m starting to feel the urge to pack my hospital bag and get the last minute stuff (disposable diapers for the first few days, pads for myself, etc) together just in case. I’m still hoping to go another 6 weeks, but realistically it could be sooner (though preferably not for another 3 at least, to make it to 37 weeks!) and with the stuff I’m feeling, I feel like things are gearing up. Not imminently, but getting there.

Wow, 6 weeks. That’s, like, not very much. I forget if I’ve written this before (I scrolled back and didn’t see it but I was just skimming) but I’m starting to feel like I wish it was just here already (“it” being labour and all that stuff, the action part of things) so that I could just deal with it and not have all this anticipation. I can’t decide if I’m more excited or nervous about the whole thing. Or if I’m still in shock. Ha, just wait for the shock after he’s born.

I still sometimes wonder if I’m actually pregnant. I wake up in the morning and wonder if it’s all been a dream. I see myself in a mirror or a window and I can’t believe that I look like that. Me! With a baby belly! Who is that person? I wonder if I’ll have a baby in my arms and have the same reaction.

I signed up for breastfeeding classes at the hospital for a few weekends from now. It’s an hour class taught by lactation consultants so you know what to expect and hopefully get some contact info for them for after if/when you need help. I’m looking forward to it since it’s been a concern of mine after all the stories I’ve heard and how pretty much everyone except one person I know has given up. I don’t mind not doing it if I’ve given it my best shot and it’s not working for some reason, but I don’t want it to be because I didn’t have the proper supports to continue with it. It’s just something I consider very important and always have, ever since I can remember and even before it became the popular thing to do. I just hope I’m not setting myself up for failure by feeling so strongly about it, or setting myself up for feeling bad about myself.

Baby is squirming around and making me very uncomfortable, plus I think I have to pee (which doesn’t help with the pressure down low) so I’m off to head to bed and read for a bit before I sleep. It’s early but I’ve been so tired and some of it may be lack of sleep over the weekend. And laying down with Snoogle solves all my problems, so that seems like a good solution. I don’t know what I would do without Snoogle. I think the company should pay me a lot of money to endorse them.

32w6d

I was talking to a friend today, one who is pregnant for her second and was one of the ones who got pregnant right after I miscarried the first time. (It’s very strange to look at her son and think that we should have a kid who is just a little bit older than him). Anyway, she’s about two weeks ahead of me. I’ve been picking her brain a lot during this pregnancy, as someone who has similar philosophies and parenting styles as I do.

Today I was asking her about the difference between being pregnant with #1 and #2, and whether this one is more real than the first one. She said something that really resonated with me, in that she said that during the first pregnancy, she was very bonded with the pregnancy itself and less so with the baby, so that when he was born, he was totally new and she missed being pregnant and all. She said that this time, she’s more bonded with the baby rather than the pregnancy, so she feels differently about the result of the pregnancy.

I’ve been wondering if I would feel more excited about meeting our baby if it were a girl, since that’s what I wanted in the first place and would still very much like to have one day. It’s not that I’m not excited to meet him… but I just can’t really seem to wrap my head around the idea that we’ll actually have a baby out of this. The pregnancy itself has been such a major focus, with first it taking us so long to achieve, and then wanting to enjoy every second of it because I so very much wanted to experience all this and am so grateful to be able to, plus not being sure if there will ever be another one. (oh, for that time machine!).

After talking to her, I wonder if that’s just a natural result of not having been through this before and not being able to fully picture in any meaningful way how this squirming belly is someday going to translate into a baby. I mean, obviously intellectually we know that it (hopefully) will, but to actually wrap your head around that very abstract-at-this-point idea is a bit difficult. It could be partly because of our past issues, but my mom commented that expecting me was very different from expecting my brother because they actually believed the end result, having seen one through all the way already. They could much more easily translate the internal stuff into a real baby that they could picture.

I am excited to meet our baby, but I feel disconnected a bit from the physical reality. I’m a bit concerned that that will translate into not feeling connected when he’s born like you sometimes hear people taking time to bond with their baby. I always pictured that I would immediately recognize him and be bonded with him the second he was born after all we’ve been through to get him, but I’m not sure if it will be that way. Sometimes I picture taking one look at him and feeling like, “oh, there you are, finally!” and sometimes I picture looking at him and seeing… a baby. Not necessarily feeling that he’s *my* baby right away. Either way, I expect the rest will follow.

I guess just like all the rest of the stuff that’s unimaginable to me, I can’t fully appreciate the love you feel for your children. I love the idea of the baby in my belly, but it’s pretty hard to fully love something you can’t really imagine in the same way you can once it’s fully real.