Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

24 weeks, 6 days


I hope everyone is having a great Christmas!  I know this is a hard time of year.

Someone remarked to me last week how Christmas is a great time to be pregnant - and IMMEDIATELY my thoughts jumped to IF, of course.

I still feel like I don't quite deserve our little Appleseed.  I can think of several IF ladies who deserve their own Christmas miracles more.  But IF isn't about 'deserve'.  Sigh.

Every little kick I feel makes me happy.  But also makes me think of my IF sisters still waiting, every time.

(In good news, our cousin had her baby today!  You may remember she was also having trouble, and had IVF in Taiwan.  What a GREAT Christmas present!  I am really excited for them.)

Thoughts are with you today, ladies!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Booked Hypnobirthing!

24 weeks, 1 day

So I finally booked hypnobirthing!    Hooray!  I was so excited to do this.  Yes, even the booking of it I was excited for.  Now I'm excited for the class.

I've been intending to book hypnobirthing for ages now, and was getting a bit ansy that it wasn't happening.  I emailed/called the lady several times a few weeks ago, but no word back.  I tried again (through a different link) two days ago - bam, she replies right away and I just bought it online now (fancy, right? hhaha).

The classes are the ones I'd been hoping to take - right near Church (therefore close to my house - about 10 min walking), and on Sunday evening - so very convenient.  Classes mid week (prenatal classes) will be a huge hassle to get down in time for, with traffic and whatnot.

And more and more I'm like - what the heck am I thinking?  Home birth?  Can I do this without pain meds?

But yes, it might be possible - but I will CERTAINLY need some mind-body control that I don't have right now.

Hebrews, a good IRL friend of mine, and my midwife all swear by it.  Yay!

And I am NOT fantastic right now at calming my mind when it is racing - I am hoping this class will help me develop a skill to do just that (as well as making birthing easier).

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Different strokes for different folks.

23 weeks, 5 days

I can't believe I am 6 months tomorrow.  I am just so happy.

Really - when I was having my super sad day when DH left, what cheered me up was looking at my baby registry online.  It was just fun to look at.  I just kept scrolling through it all afternoon.

Met up with some a pregger friend for dinner on Sunday.  Really I'm friends with the guy and his gf is pg (they are getting married next year).

I had a really hard time not judging them.  They are making very different choices than I.  That is fine.  Well, I keep saying that, but... I thought my choices out (I think) pretty thoroughly.  And I know we have different life experiences that bring us to these places, but...

But really, it IS fine.  And I'm pretty sure my plans will go out the window when an actual Appleseed has arrived.

This is just something I'm going to have to deal with forever - judging other parents is not cool.

So how to hold back?  Or is it just like jealousy and IF?  They go together, and you have to constantly focus to not let one overwhelm the other?

Or sometimes, I want to be like "have you heard about this other way?" - but that is sort of like telling someone their way sucks, and you are better.  It's all in the wording. 

I read too many books, I do.  And I have too many hippie (sorry, en vogue word is 'crunchy') mama friends.

I am already a terrible nutrition snob.  I will judge you if you drink pop, sure, but that's just the tip of the ice berg.

M'I bad.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Rad Advent Calender!

23 weeks, 1 day

So, you are guessing by now my DH is crafty, right?

And you know he's gone away for Christmas.

So he made his dear wife an advent calendar of course!

Like, cute x 1 million?  YES! See, it has all these little cubbies for presents!!

I'm not so good with eating chocolate every morning all of December, so we've been doing little presents/poems for the last few years.  (I get HANGRY too easily!  Hah!)

This year it is filled with fun things like teeny tiny little books, socks, etc.  So thoughtful!  It was a total surprise Dec 1st morning!  I LOVE it.  Totally fun to open - makes me feel loved even though he is so far away.

Sure, it is not really following actual Advent and all...

Love you, DH!  xxoo

Monday, December 10, 2012

Down in the Dumps

22 weeks, 5 days

First of all, I am thinking - "How can I be so sad today?  See above!  I am 22 weeks, 5 days!  Hooray!".  But sad I am still.

DH leaves tonight for the big Vietnam trip.  :(
I am going to miss him soooo much!

I do not want to go.  The reason I am not going is of course because we have a little Appleseed on board, which I am SO thankful for.  I prefer to have my little Appleseed a million times to taking a trip - even now looking through old Instra.gram photos I clearly separate them in my mind into before (look at me!  I don't know my wait is about to end!)/after Appleseed (look at me!  Secretly pg there!), I still can't believe our blessing to have her around! 

And it's not like I don't want him to go - it will be good family bonding for him, I would hate for him to miss out on such a great trip.  (Although, haha, it would have been good family bonding for me too - I like his sisters, I think travelling with them would be fun)

It's just that I will miss him like crazy.  He's going to be gone a month!  Oy vey.  He's such a wonderful DH.  I am really so very lucky.  But this makes it harder to not have him around!

We had our choir Christmas Cantata last night, and about halfway through I had to jet - I was staring to black out a bit.  Just too much standing, I guess.  Yikes.  But sitting down made me feel fine (well, a bit shaky still, but not blacking-out-ish).  DH was in the audience, so of course he came out and sat with me.  Ha - good thing my midwife was there too!  Not that I needed her, just that she was there to confirm everything was ok.  As did my other midwife buddy.

I felt sort of dizzy though the rest of the night/through the night - like in early pregnancy.  It is contributing to my sad mood, I think.  And the gloomy weather.

My Mom will come for a few days next week, then I'm off to my Dad's for a week, then the fun NYE for a few days, then my Aunt comes for a week....  but this week will be tough.  Not only am I DH-less, but I'm super busy.  Too busy.  I've been way too busy lately - that's how it is around the holidays.

And I know not everyone has found their DH yet, I am so lucky to have him at all.

But still... miss you already, DH!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

What a WONDERFUL IF Blogger community!

22 weeks, 3 days

Soon after I announced I was preggo, the lovely and talented JBTC soon emailed me and offered to lend me her fetal doppler.  This was shortly after she had experienced her own loss.

How amazing, right?  What a lovely community of IF bloggers we're all in - I was immensely touched by her gesture.  The fetal doppler package has now arrived - every day DH and I enjoy listening to our little Appleseed's whump-whump-whump.  It is so lovely and reassuring!

Don't worry, JBTC - we didn't have ultrasound gel around, but it seems to work fine with Aloe Gel (hey, also good for the skin!), so we're golden.

Much to my surprise, JBTC also included two adorable outfits for the Appleseed!  DH LOVES them - particularly the purple one with the cupcake!  Hah!  Cute!  AND, she also included a little Snuggle Blanket toy for the Appleseed - again, super cute!


I am crossing my fingers and hoping for everyone still waiting - I'm sure this fetal doppler will be off to a good home soon!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Baby Funeral

21 weeks, 6 days

So tonight DH and I attended a baby funeral.  Needless to say, it was quite emotional. 

DH's boss had twins 5 1/2 months ago, and one of them passed away last week.  He was born with a birth defect (heart), but I'm not sure of the exact details.  He underwent many surgeries - he was in a fantastic hospital, but in the end he succumbed.

Gosh, it was just so sad.  My jaw is still tight from trying to keep all the crying in.  That poor family!  And the Mom... it was heartbreaking.  Yes, the other twin is healthy, but it really hit me tonight just how sad it really is.  I couldn't go up and look at him in his little coffin.  I know that is wimpy... but the little baby was Asian, we're going to have an Asian-ish baby... it is just too close to home.

They played a slide show of pics of the baby with the family, and I just kept thinking - "I hope I never see Appleseed with tubes in her face" over and over.

My own bosslady's twins are also not healthy - well, one is, but the other one needs a big surgery.  Again, I'm unclear as to the details.  I do not believe it is life threatening at this point - thank goodness!

Remember when I thought it would be cute to have HOM?  Yeah, I take that back.  I'm so happy with my little singleton.

Rest in peace little baby.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

4th midwife visit!

21 weeks, 3 days

Hello hello!  Sorry I've been a little AWOL - it is hard to cram writing a novel into November - I just barely finished (had to take yesterday off work!).

I've been having some bleeding gums - boooo.  I did a little oil pulling yesterday - and it looks like I need to make flossing more of a priority.  But it's ok of course, whatever is best for the Appleseed!

Here is the update from my midwife appt on Monday!  As you can see, I'm running out of questions - can you think of any I should ask?

Me: Can i check my own cervix dilation? [Like, so I know when to call them at the start of labour, and I'm thinking - as IF ladies you check that thing all the time]
Marvelous Midwife: Sure, but have to be careful not to break membranes.  This takes sometimes a few years to teach midwifery students.

So it is kind of a bad idea.  Ok, at least I know!

MeBabies sometimes born not breathing - what its different between you and hospital?
MMNot much.  They can intibate babies born with merconium in their fliud if needed. 

But if I have merconium in my fluids we'll go to the hospital for sure so that's fine.  There is a list of things that if they go slightly wrong (like, say, group B strep), we'll go to the hospital fo' shizzle.

Me: What about lying on my back?  Can I do it?
MM:  MYTH!  You can totally do it!  That recommendation is based on bad science!  You would pass out from lack of blood before the baby would not get any.  And you wouldn't pass out - you'd turn.  Just not ok during labour.

I LOVE this.  I like sleeping on my back for like 5-10 min in the morning as I'm waking up.  And as I'm starting to get bigger, I was worrying I might be getting close to cutting the baby's blood supply off, so I was feel guilty.  HAH!  No more guilt!  I can lie on my back all I want - except during labour.  Fine.  Hoorah!  AND, it seemed like terrible design - like lying on your back is some secret you have to know, otherwise your baby will end up delayed?  Doesn't make sense.

Me: When should i go off for mat leave?   
MM:  Standard is 37 weeks.

This seems a bit early to me.  For the ladies out there that are lucky enough to have had babies already - when did you go off?  If I go off at 37 weeks and don't have the Appleseed until 40 weeks, that seems like a waste of mat leave?  She said she'd write me a note if I'm not feeling up to working right at the end.

Monday, November 19, 2012

The sexy ultrasound edition.

19 weeks, 5 days!

Today was the sexy ultrasound!!!  By that I mean - she could determine the Appleseed's sex!

I was rather nervous and excited all morning.  I was sort of freaking about drinking 1.5 litres of water and then not peeing.  Like, I use the ladies room every hour or two...how on earth was I going to be able to do this!?!?

And I was a bit worried about birth defects.  We skipped the down's syndrome blood test (on purpose, but...), so I was hoping we'd see a healthy little Appleseed in there.

Everything looked good, all the bits and pieces in the right order.  Phew!  I made sure to ask to confirm Appleseed had a four chambered heart, after reading this informative website.

And now what you've been waiting for........


Wow.  Our little Appleseed-ette!  I almost cried in the ultrasound office!  Suddenly it is so much more real - I'm having a little girl!  Yikes!  Wowzas!  So exciting!!!!

I've been accidentally slipping in a 'she' here and there, and then correcting myself - but I was right!  I had a dream last night Appleseed was a boy - but I was wrong!  Hah.

Appleseed is measuring just 2 days shy of average for 19 wks 5 days - maybe really I ought to be due on April 13th instead of April 10th, I am thinking.  If I am lucky enough to make it that far, I won't stress about being overdue until maybe a week or so after that, then.  The 23rd.  :)

BUT, Appleseed's legs are measuring a bit later - aka, she is 'tall'!  Wow!  Well, a tiny bit tall.  Cool, right?

There was this cool moment when the tech (who turned out to be from my home town) wasn't moving the ultrasound wand and we were just looking at Appleseed - she looked so chill in there.  She had one legged crossed over the other, and she was sucking her fingers - just hanging out, having a nice afternoon!  Love it!

Oh, and I just realised I have not yet updated the final decision:  I am not going to Vietnam.  I don't really think Appleseed would have been in any danger, but this just seemed...easiest.

Monday, November 12, 2012

The Appleseed Mix

18 weeks, 5 days

Sorry I've been away from blogland so much lately.  November is really tough - I feel as if when I'm typing I should be writing my darn novel [have you heard about NaNoWriMo?  It is super fun.].  (see sidebar - so far I'm doing ok for wordcount, but it is a constant struggle!)

So here is a short story:  My bosslady was telling me they picked four classical songs to play over and over while her twins were still growing in her tummy.  She said they particularly like 'Flight of the bumble bee', and as they got older they would kick in time to the music when they played it.  They even skyped with her Dad (who is back in the old country) who could see the kicks to the music.

After they were born, she said if they played the song, the babies would go crazy, kind of dancing in their crib to the music.

I think that is all super cute.  So DH and I have made an Appleseed mix, to likewise encourage the enjoyment of music by the Appleseed.  We have five songs, not four, but the idea is the same.  She said it has to be a short playlist and all classical - which again I stretch a tiny bit.  She also said the other three songs they had no clear reaction to, so it really was their preference.  Cool, right?

Without further ado, the Appleseed Mix!

Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite 

I've always loved the Nutcracker Suite - it is nice now as Christmas is sort of on the way.  Will I still be able to stomach it in March? 

Ravel's Bolero

This has a strong melody that just keeps repeating - perhaps good for young brains? 

Bach's Tocatta in Fugue in D  

Have I mentioned my Dad is an organist?  This is my favourite song to hear.  Yes, I'm not too original, this is like the most famous organ piece.  Listen past the first few bars (the "scary organ music") and it is actually quite pretty.  Ok, Ok, I only had the MP3 of some weird violin version, but maybe I'll get an organ version soon!

 Grieg's In the Hall of the Mountain King 

I've thought this was a really great piece of music since I was a kid. Maybe therefore Appleseed with think so too?  I always thought it was Mountain LION King though.  Hrmmm.   Anyway, same deal with a simple melody that repeats.

Mason William's Classical Gas

This is where I stretch the classical music thing a little.  Classical Gas is not the same as classical music.  But am I the only hippie here, or is this song just sort of groovy?  It really gets you tappin' your foot along.

Monday, October 29, 2012

3rd Midwife appt

16 weeks, 5 days

Sorry I haven't been posting much lately.  Nothing much was going on until today's appt.  I've just been thinking about how lucky I am to have this little Appleseed, all day long!

Oh, other than this strange burst of energy I had this weekend!  THAT was awesome.  I was like, "I must organise the shoes.  The shoes must be organised." and I spent the next several hours doing just that.  Amazing.  I'm the type (for at least the last few months, but even in general) to think I should do something about those shoes...but then not actually do anything for a few years.

So without further ado, the Q&A from my appointment today.

Me:  Can I have hot showers?  And I'm talking really hot showers here?  I like it when my scalp kinda burns.
Marvelous Midwife:  Yes.  Just don't soak in a hot tub for a long time.

Good!  That's what I thought, I just wanted to hear it from her so I don't feel guilty.  I love hot winter showers.  She said I can soak my feet in the hot tub at NYE (should I be somewhere that has one).

Me: Will you do a vitamin K injection after bith?
MM:  Yes.  Not required but highly recommended. The antibiotic ointment in the eyes is mandatory by law.

Good.  I'm down with that.  I'm not really fussed over the eye ointment, even though I think it will be unnecessary.

Me:  If I have an emergy C-section, is 2-layered suturing standard?
MM:  Totally.

Good!  I had read some scary stuff, but she says single layer suturing was only a fad for about 5 years and no one does that anymore.

Me:  If we go to the hospital, am I allowed to eat/drink?
MM:  Yes - unless you're being prepped for a C-section.

Good.  Makes sense.  I'm a huge eater (and protein with every snack).  I can't see doing the whole labour thing without at least some eating in the beginning part.  I can't see making it without food.

Me:  Will you oil my perineum with olive oil during labour?
MM:  Yes!  And hot compresses!  It feels good for you.  Baby comes out a bit oily.

Good.  I had read it can reduce tearing.  I dig it.  Aim is for pain before baby comes, not after. 

I then asked a bunch of questions about shoulder dystocia (thinking of poor baby Hebrews).  She assured me she has had at least 50 babies delivered whose shoulders got stuck, and they got them all out without any permanent damage to the babies.

She did mention she broke a baby's collar bone the other day getting it out.  Um.  Scary.  She said it is ok and the baby heals easily.  But still.  Scary.  But at that point they have to get out, no two ways about it.  Too late for C-section or anything.

My blood pressure is excellent (which I already sort knew, because I check it at the drug store for fun whenever we go), no protein in my urine, my glucose level (by pee stick) is fine.  Appleseed's ticker is clocking in at 150 bpm - excellent! :)

Our big ultrasound (aka, the sexy one) will be in ~2-3 weeks.  :)  The MM swears this ultrasound tech is super wonderful, which I like.  I've had my fair share of ultrasounds, and I know in general the techs say noting and leave you lying there trying to poke them for info, which they tend to give grudgingly and confusingly.

I just can't believe we've made it so far!  I feel so lucky.  But lucky isn't the right word.  It's more than that.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Choline important for IF and PG

16weeks, 4 days

So I was tooling around the WAP site, reading about home-made formula, when I stumbled upon the importance of choline in the diet for pregnancy.

What was this?  I've never heard of choline!

So I did some reading  online, and it turns out choline is super important for brain development of the fetus.  Very interesting.

But the articles ALSO mentioned it can be linked to Infertility as well!  PARTICULARLY FOR THOSE WHO DON'T EAT EGGS.  [jb?]

So.  I plan to rush out and get some soon.  Pretty much the only way to get enough choline is to eat liver.  And I just can't.  I hates it. 

Monday, October 15, 2012


14 weeks, 5 days

Well, I officially announced at work!  And because I'm a huge cheeseball, this is how I did it:

From: *
Sent: Monday, October 15, 2012 7:16 AM
To: *
Subject: I figured I'd bring in some Cinnamon Buns....

…since I’ve got a bun in the oven!

They are by the printer, help yourself!


Hahha - it was funny!  I have been planning this for like 2 years.  :)  DH and I had big plans with the cinnamon buns last week, but I was too sick to go to work, so we had to freeze them until today.  It was kind of fun, immediately a bunch of people converged on my desk.  I found out another lady (who shares the same last name - this is totally common for Chinese people, but coming from my unique Germanic last name, to me it is quite fun) is also pg (with her 3rd!).

In other work gossip, our layoff rumours have hit the big time - wall street journal is reporting it (not just tech blogs), and it is picked up on Reuters.  This isn't of itself news, but rumours that the RIF is going to hit our site hardest IS news.  That would be bad.  It will be in 3-10 days - I'll keep you posted!

And here I am finally not hating work so much!  I am guessing finding a job in my field in this City while pg is not going to be easy.  It sounds like fun to be off for my pregnancy, but...$$$ will get tight, I am guessing.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Sock Monkey! (He's crafty!)

14 weeks, 1 day

DH just finished the most cutest adorable SOCK MONKEY ever!  A little while ago this was just a pair of socks I had!

This will be Appleseed's first toy!  Amazing, right?  I am not crafty - but I am so glad my DH is!  :)

In other news, I have a raging head cold, I've been out for a few days.  Poot.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

13 weeks 4 days

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

We've had most of our thanksgivings already!  Last night was Thanksgiving at my Uncle's (mmmm...good turkey, and the best pumpkin pie I've had in years!)  , so we got to tell the family - we'd been waiting for this big announcement.  The floodgates are now open, so to speak.  (As my cousin put it - "I'm going to tell everyone I know, ok?")

That was fun.  My cousin and his wife have officially started to TTC, she has super bad endo, so I was kind of worried the news wouldn't be so exciting for her... but it turns out she was sick and didn't make it.  Which isn't good of course, but allows her to process the information on her own, which I always preferred.  They are building a super cute house that will be ready in a few weeks, and they've been majorly stressed about that, I hope things settle down for them after they've moved. 

Haha, when ever we come back to my home City, I always try to convince DH we should move here.  We had another debate about it yesterday, and he was having none of it!  See, the things is houses are SO MUCH CHEAPER here I wouldn't have to go back to work if we lived here...but still DH would have to get a job, and jobs are sort of hard to get here, thus the cheap houses.  But it would be fun.

And going to church at my old church was soooo fun!  It has a totally different vibe than my big-City church.  A lot of the people have known me since I was like 4, and another bunch since I was like 15.  That's nice.

Oh, we told our good friends on Friday night, that was super fun.  She has two adorable kids, and I'm looking for lots of advice from her.  They already have begun to press baby things on us - scary!  But they are moving soon, no point moving baby things to their new house (their youngest is 2.5 years).  We specifically are too scared to buy any baby stuff yet, this will be the first....yikes.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Due date moved!

All about pg:

12 weeks, 1 5 days
My due date is now April 10th (was April 15th).  4 days closer to meeting Appleseed!  Haha - I know it doesn't work like that, but I feel as if there is some bonus.  :)

Today's checkup with our Marvelous Midwife was super fun.  Some highlights:

  • I asked if "contractions" can be called "rushes".  She was cool with that.  I'm reading the Ina May book, and she uses the term birthing rushes instead of contractions.  Never having done this, a 'contraction' sounds scary and painful to me, but a 'birthing rush' sounds like something maybe I can do.  So rushes it is.  :)
  • We asked how we tell our family doc about this, what is the process?  She said we should call and tell them I have a midwife, and that I will be in for my 8 wk well baby appt, but she'll handle the baby's care up to 6 wks.  She said sometimes they will ask me to bring the baby in at 3 days, and I should decline.  Easy peasy - no way I'm bringing a 3 day old infant into a sick house!  (unless of course there is some drama, but then we'd call the midwife who would come to our house)
  • I told her I'm planning on 'doing the month'/lying in - aka, Appleseed and I stay home for the first month.  Only problem is the 2 week baby checkup is scheduled to be in the clinic.  Right away she was like, "No prob, I'll just come to your house."  Yay!  I was worried I would be imposing and asking a favour, but she was totally ok with it, and seemed to think it was a really good idea to do.
  • I told her we are hoping to do a hypnobirthing class.  She had an immediate strong reaction - she was a huge fan.  She said she hasn't seen any other method that is as effective.  Great!  And I found a class that is ~10 min walk from our house (right by Church, actually), so that will be super convenient.
  • Also I asked about the prenatal classes they run at the centre - we can sign up for the Feb or March classes.  We're just going to check our schedule.
  • I was somewhat concerned that last ultra sound (18 weeks) would be too early to see if I had placenta previa - but she assured me it is not.  Placenta could move, but wouldn't go down after then if it was ok.
  • We asked about cord blood banking.  She wasn't a huge fan.  She mentioned the blood really only lasts about year or so, and she has another client who works in the industry who didn't even save her own cord blood (who had her baby like 2 weeks ago).  She encouraged us to do more research.
Then we heard the Appleseed's heartbeat!  160!  Loves!  :)   That was fun.  She checked my blood pressure and whatnot - which happens to be excellent.  Great!

Then onto Vietnam...
We told her our new concerns.  She basically said she (of course) can't make the decision for us.  She did say if it was her, she'd go.

Here's some new info leaning me to 'no' though -
I will be travelling when I'm ~21 weeks to ~27 weeks.  If I go into super early labour, a baby born in Toronto could survive (albeit with potentially major birth defects).  A baby born in Vietnam will not.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Adoption Seminar, Days 3 and 4

12 weeks

Well, we are officially done PRIDE training!!   In the end, I really liked it, I think it was a great experience.  I would have wished there was a little more emphasis on local non-infant adoptions, but there was quite a lot.  And it has left us with a HUGE resource book.

And lots of adoption buddies.  They are planning on meeting up at the next A.R.E (adoption resource exchange - sort of like an adoption fair) that is in October.  We won't be going, because our plans have shifted out due to Appleseed, but that is really cool that they are going, I'm slightly jealous.  DH might go just to check it out.  There is a keen couple that is planning on putting together a mailing list of everyone, and people are talking about a 5 year reunion, with our kids!  :)  (Not sure it will happen, but a really nice idea.)

I think it is just like having IF ladies - super important.  I can't tell you how much that first meeting of the IF group was to me.  Some of you will remember I cried the whole time, but I really needed to see other women in my situation, which I still felt a lot of shame about at that time.

I did learn something shocking yesterday - for adoption, you only get 8 months maternity leave (called parental leave).  What what?  I thought it was the same as for birth (12 months).  Apparently the rules changed a few years ago, and are being challenged at the supreme court.  We shall see.  Seems highly unfair to me.

While still feeling unsure about fostering (need to do way more research - there are administrative complications as well), DH is quite convinced he wants to adopt a child (not that he wasn't before, but this has really cemented it).  Probably after Appleseed, and then God-willing we'll either have another child by birth, or by adoption.

The Rubber Band Connection

This post is all about pg - you may want to skip it.


Oh My Gosh.  Here I am.  12 weeks!  Yowzas!  Hooray!  Midwife appt tomorrow!

The Appleseed is the size of a lime this week.  I am sort of shocked - that is huge!  Go Appleseed, go!

I've been having trouble closing my pants all week, so Monday I tried the 'rubber band method' of holding one's pants together.

 (this is just a pic from the Interweb, this is not me.)

I loooove the rubber band method.  I looove my pants not cutting into my belly - so comfy!  My boss offered me her belly band, and that will be great if she brings it in, but the rubber band has given me much comfort this week.  I can't quite decide if I'm 'showing'.  Certainly in the evenings my tummy seems large...but in the mornings, not always so much.  More like - after a big Christmas dinner.

I've bought a few loose tops at a discount store to hide the fact that my pants aren't done up.  I am not planning to announce at work for a week+ yet, so I need to keep this up for a while yet.  Not that I'll be able to show the rubber band after, but at least I won't have to pretend I've just had a few too many french fries lately!

I'm also not interested in spending a ton of money on maternity clothes, so I'm hoping once we announce to more friends people will offer me their old clothes.  :)  My boss offered me some clothes of her sister in law (or someone?), that is nice, but I'm not sure it is going to happen, we'll see.

My boss has been really nice lately.  We have whispered conversations about pg now and then.

I'm still getting morning sickness.  I've had no vomitus drama, but I've been feeling dizzy/nauseous...oh, well, still quite often.  Most of Thursday I felt sick, and all through choir practise.  Yikes!  The good news is that Thursday morning at work I had been thinking(/worrying) "I feel a bit too normal, I wonder if Appleseed is ok?", then WHAM, I felt pretty sick all day.  :)  Is ok, I'll take it.  I know you can feel sick if your baby is actually not ok, but the trend is a good sign at least, I've got to think.  (ps - Ginger tea?  Seems to have no effect on me)

I think Appleseed would like me to eat more (?), but it is hard - I have just a regular appetite.  So far it seems like I've gained about 2 pounds - totally ok.  I had to get up last night and eat at 4am, I just wasn't sleeping and felt a bit empty - despite going to bed full.  And I'm still thirsty like a maniac, so most of that is fluid, I'm sure.  I have stepped up my drinking quite a bit - I scheme now to pump in extra glasses of water in the day.

I haven't really had any cravings yet, other than a dream about choco-crispies (chocolate rice crispies  - I don't even know if you can get them in Canada, and really, we're not extruded grain type of people, I would never buy it).  I guess I've had tons of aversions - I'm really picky about beef now, and I almost ralphed the last time I smelled sardines (which normally I chow down on at least once a week).

My fatigue is way better, for about the last few weeks.  I feel human again.  :)

I don't really have super smell, and don't urinate more than normal.

I was having crazy breathlessness earlier, but that is mostly gone away.  Like I'd walk around the house, then lie down on the couch pretty out of breath.  Weird.  But gone now.

I have had a headache or two, which is normal, I don't usually ever have headaches.

My boobs don't hurt so much anymore.  They were quite sore at first, but have dulled to generally sore-ish, no big deal.   They are basically huge, but I've adjusted.  (Ok, ok, not at all 'huge'.  Huge for me.)

I did have one crazy crying jag last week, but thankfully that seems to be an isolated incident.  Poor DH.  I cried for like half an hour, for no reason.  Which of course I could barely tell him, because I was crying so hard.

Friday, September 28, 2012

A reflection back to our 2nd anniversary

11 weeks, 5 days

Oh, what a difference a year makes.  Our 2nd anniversary?  Pretty awful.  Since our anniversary coincides with our TTC-aversary, 2 years really hit me hard.  I went trolling through the blog posts to see if I had posted about it.  Yup.  It's even worse than I remember.

I didn't even want to go out for our anniversary last year, and finally DH convinced me to go to a local restaurant we both liked.  I was sad the whole time.  Even though I tried to fill my head with things like "aren't I lucky to have my DH", all I could think of was two years TTC.

Now here I am on the flip side, still surprised to be here.  It still seems unreal to me.  Even when I think about becoming great with child, I don't 100% feel like that is actually going to happen to me.

All I can think about lately is how lucky and blessed I am.  I am still so happy to have my DH (and I love being married), but the addition of the Appleseed has somehow slanted the entire picture.  Now I am happy I have a fancy job (instead of hating it), so glad for our cozy house (see, I said 'cozy' and not 'dump of a'), etc.

I wish we all could be here, whether through adoption or birth.  It makes me so sad to think of our IF warriors still trying, or of the recent losses.  So I'm trying not to appear as if I'm gloating ... but I am so happy and thankful every day, and not taking anything for granted.

I think if we were still TTC this would be a wildly different anniversary from last year anyway - with the adoption seminar half done, things would be looking up.  Adoption is a bit scary at first because there is so much process, and you don't know all the rules.  But the seminar really does help, and everyone there is excited for adoption.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Happy 3rd Anniversary, DH!

11 weeks, 3 days

I am so lucky and happy to be married to my darling husband!  Happy 3rd anniversary honey!  xxoo!
I stole this from JB - I think it is a cute thing to fill out.  :)  Thanks, JB!

1. Where/how did you meet: We met at a friend's house shortly after I moved back to Canada.  My high school friend (one of only a few I'm still in touch with) and his dragon-boating buddy are married, and had a dinner party with both of us over.

2. How long have you known each other: Since November 2006.

3. How long after you met did you start dating: Quite a while - the four of us (DH, me, high school friend and dragon boating buddy) we on a curling team together that winter, and we only started dating after curling season was done - we had a season to get to know each other and start to flirt.

4. How long did you date before you were engaged:  ~2 years

5. How long was your engagement: 9 months

6. How long have you been married: 3 years
7. What is your anniversary:  09-26-09

8. How many people came to your wedding reception:220!
9. What kind of cake did you serve: Cupcakes made by Feather and entourage.  YUM!  (We even had some Vegan ones!)

10. Where was your wedding:  Knox United in Scarborough, Ontario.  Cute church, close to our venue, carpet matched the bridesmaids dresses (I kid you not), but in retrospect if we had already starting going to our church it would have been a lot more special to be married there by my own minister.

11. What did you serve for your meal: 10 course traditional Chinese wedding buffet.  The first course, as is traditionally done in Cantonese circles, was suckling pig with glowing eyeballs, which the waiters paraded out with the lights down low.  It made quite an impression on my relatives!  :)

12. How many people were there in your bridal party: 8.  4 ladies, 4 gents.  My ladies were my #1 cousin, Feather, and two ladies from University I was (/am) so close with.  DH had 4 friends.

13. Are you still friends with them all: I'm still friends/related to all my ladies.  Two of DH's groomsmen we are no longer friends with.  :(
14. Did you or your spouse cry during the ceremony: Oh yeah, I was a total mess.  My Dad drove us to the Church, and we got in the car he started playing "Going to the Chapel" because he remembered I have always wanted to hear that song as I was going to the chapel to get married - well, the water works started and didn't stop for quite a while.  I had to re-do my makeup at Church, and hang out a bit in the basement while I pulled it together.  I was just so happy and over excited!

15. Most special moment of your wedding day: My cousin and a good friend sang "Lo, How a Rose" during the service a capella, I loved it and was quite touched (and obvi cried).
16. Any funny moments: Lots!  In particular, they made me play this game where I had to guess DH's bum from a lineup of boys (I was blindfolded).  Games are common in Chinese receptions.  Well, it was hilarious.  I had to say why a particular bum was incorrect, and I tried to get creative with my responses!  Haha - was my face red when I realized how many of the bums of my guy friends I have now felt up!
17. Any big disasters: Nothing too huge - my makeup didn't look quite how  I wanted it to look, it did rain a bit (which is ok, that is good luck), my hair didn't turn out quite how I wanted, DH's best man was a bit rude, but no huge disasters.
18. Where did you go on your honeymoon: Resort in Mexico.
19. How long where you gone: 7 days
20. If you were to do your wedding over, what would you change: I would have done my own makeup, I would have been more clear about how I wanted my dress, I would have made the bridesmaids dresses easier, I would have been more clear about my hair, I would have had a different photographer....little tweaks, nothing major.

21. What side of the bed do you sleep on: the left
22. What size is your bed: Queen
23. Greatest strength as a couple: We share a lot of the same family goals.

24. Greatest challenge as a couple: IF... and that I kinda want to live on a commune.

25. Who literally pays the bills: me!

26. What is your song: We don't really have one.  If pressed, I'd have to say the theme song to True Blood.  Every time we watch it I sing it to DH, but I change "I want to do bad things with you" to "I want to do good things with you"
27. What did you dance your first dance to:  We did not have a first dance.  It was our wedding and both of us aren't huge dancers, so we just didn't do that.
28. Describe your wedding dress:  I had 3 dresses.  My white dress I had custom made.  I was inspired by Porche de Rossi's dress when she married Ellen, I wanted something similar, but with a slightly different top.  It had a HUGE tuile (?) skirt and had over the shoulder...oh, here is a pic (me and one of my bridesmaids), I am not describing it well.  Recently a colleague's wife remarked that she really loved my wedding dress (and she is fancy and has gone to many fancy weddings), so that really brightened my day (yes, 3 years later!).

I also wore a cham-sam, which is a traditional Chinese modern wedding dress.  I had that custom made too, instead of a huge slit up the side (common), I had it flow out a bit to cover my big hips.  The only thing I didn't like about it is that the seamstress made it with a default little tummy for me, but I didn't have one!  During our tea ceremony I had on a quai, which is a traditional dress for the tea ceremony.  I borrowed DH's sister's.  It is quite pretty.  Um... I still haven't given it back yet!

29. What kind of flowers did you have at your wedding: White roses.

30. Are your wedding bands engraved? Yes. The date (can't forget!) and our last name "Taai taai" which is wife in Cantonese.  :)  Like if our last name was Chen, my ring says CHEN TAAI TAAI 09-26-09. 

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Adoption Seminar, Day 2

10 wks, 6 days

Day 2 was good as well.  I am feeling more comfortable, getting to know some other couples there.

I thought of something I should have mentioned yesterday - infertility.  It wasn't a huge deal.  I was worried we'd have to go into our back stories about 'why' we were looking at adoption.  Nope.  It was mentioned as a reason people adopt, but not focused on.  I really liked that.   When I first found out we had to do PRIDE training, I had horrible visions of boo-hoo-fests about infertility - that just isn't the focus.

We did today talk about loss, and acknowledge some of the loss associated with adoption - including what we would lose not giving birth to this child.

DH and I are more excited.  I'm starting to get this sense of "Yes, there are issues associated with adopting slightly older children through CAS.  Here are some tools to deal with them."  - instead of sort of being thrown to the wolves.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Adoption Seminar, Day 1

10 wks, 5 days

Well, today was the first day of the adoption seminar (PRIDE training).

It was actually kind of fun.  The woman who is running our seminar is really good.  And it INCLUDES FOOD (it should for that price, right?)!  (JB, you might want to let them know about GF early - it seems that isn't hard for them to accommodate)

It was super interesting - I really like how they seem to be about honesty, and not about requiring perfect families.  It's also nice to get to know other people wanting to adopt - and actually, there were several people there that already had one or two kids, but wanted to grow their families through adoption.  And there were some people there who weren't sure, and so were taking the training as a way to better educate themselves, which is totally fair.

There was a lot of info about fostering, which is good, that's on our possibility list.  We talked to her a bit during the breaks about it - she says if we're fostering, it is more likely CAS would do our homestudy (aka, free).  We also mentioned we're expecting (privately), and what sort of ages would be good for our child and the foster child, and she suggested another baby would probably be ok, but CAS would decide if they felt we could handle it (totally paraphrasing here).

The training was CAS focused (again, that is children's aid society - aka, the kids that get removed from their birth families due to 'issues'), but she also added private (aka, infants - VERY few in Ontario every year) and international info into the presentation. 

The laws in the last few years have been reformed to make it easier to adopt local children, and they are seeing increasing adoption, which I think is great - instead of letting a kid get so old in the system they become 'un-adoptable'.

We also talked a bit about attachment issues when kids are moved from foster home to foster home.  Then she showed us the world's saddest video.  I don't know - I actually couldn't watch it, it was too sad.  It was from the child's point of view, and it was about how they kept getting moved from family to family.  SO SAD.  I was doing my best not to cry - you know when your jaw gets all tight because you're keeping it in?  Yikes.  I had to spend most of that time looking at the carpet.  I just kept thinking, "this is so sad.  Those poor kids.  It's not fair", and that would get me going.

We did a bit about how to get a child to attach to you, I really liked that.  It seems it would make sense even for birth children.

It also kicked of some good discussions DH and I had tonight, which was good - sometimes life gets in the way and we don't just sit down and spend hours talking about things.  We went through some what-if scenarios, really got us thinking about things.

DH's family is not really into the adoption idea - fostering might be a way to open them up to it.  And maybe foster-to-adopt if that works out would be great.

Or we'll see.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Adoption Training Cometh!

10 weeks, 3 days

It seems like ages ago we signed up for adoption training (PRIDE).  But here we are - Friday is our first day.  We decided it would be super crazy to back out of adoption training - there is no guarantee Appleseed is going to stick.

And PRIDE training lasts forever - as in we'll never need to renew it.  So maybe we will adopt in the future, then this would be money well spent.  In case you are curious, it costs $1400+tax, and includes free coffee.

I'm not sure what to expect - I will keep you posted.  We're going into this without much background study.  I haven't read any adoption books or anything, so really all my education will come from these sessions.

We've already had some homework to read - case studies of three different children in different circumstances.

I also don't want to come off as the jerk preggo in the room.  I would certainly have been resentful of a preggo.  I would have seen it as competing for the same babies, when the preggo doesn't 'need' one.

We are also open to fostering a child in the future.  This training might also help with that.  One of my Uncles was fostered for many years, then my Grandma adopted him.  (To be frank, I think they needed the money, and that's why the put off adoption - 10 mouths are a lot to feed!)

Monday, September 17, 2012

Vietnam Controversy

10 weeks, 1 day

So DH's family is all in town.  It is Grandma's 91st birthday this week, all the kids (10 of them!) are here for a week.  It is lovely (well, not that they speak to me in English, but they're all having a good time).  Oldest Uncle and wife have flown in from Hong Kong, and Second-oldest Uncle and wife have come in from Taiwan.  2nd Uncle is the father of DH's cousin who is expecting and due a few months before us, so it is all nice and happy.

So last night we went over there before dinner, and suddenly there was a lot of talk where I could here my name over and over.  Finally I was like "DH, what are they talking about?!?!"

He said they don't think I should go to Vietnam.  Youngest Uncle + Oldest/2nd Oldest were all up in arms about it.  They think it is too risky.  They pointed out things like - sure, you can eat only cooked food, but what if the bowl they serve it in is dirty?  (Chinese regularly 'clean' their chopsticks in a restaurant with hot water).

As 2nd Uncle is a doctor (albeit a psychiatrist), everyone (DH and I included) takes his opinion more seriously, than, say, youngest Uncle going off about something.  They're worried that I'll get traveller's diarrhea for days, and this could harm Appleseed.  And that the hospitals there aren't good (which I'm not sure is true...?). 

They kept saying "3rd world", but I was sort of thinking of Vietnam as 2nd world.  Haha - I just googled it, Vietnam is 2nd world!

So I've already talked it over with my midwife and she's cool if I go, but now DH and I are having second thoughts.  There is also the cost issue - good chance I won't get my $2200 flight back - OUCH.  And it will be sad to be without DH for 3+ weeks - I am a crazy sleeper, that is for another post, but trust me, it will be unlikely to be smooth sailing.  And I'll miss all this family bonding.

So, I ask you, my lovely first-world ladies - do you think I should go?  Would you go in my shoes?  Is there anyone reading that isn't from US/Canada that would like to drop an opinion?  (anonymous comments welcome) (All of my shoes, including being stranded DH-less, losing money, not getting to go to see DH's friends in HK and buy a purse from the ladies market, not getting to see Ankur Wat, etc.)

Thanks Ladies for your vote!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Telling the Boss

10 weeks!  (wow)

I was super nervous to tell my boss.  But on Thursday morning, as soon as I was in (and had eaten some crackers and cheese), I said, "Hey, can I talk to you for a minute?  In a meeting room?"

When we go there, my voice got all emotional and wavery, but I blurted out - "I have some good news!  I'm pregnant!"  (I'm still not used to saying that out loud!)

She was really happy for me.  I explained why I had been randomly 'sick' over the last couple of weeks.  Here is where I was nervous for - I was worried she was going to be all like, "I had twins so my morning sickness was twice as worse as yours, I would just throw up and shake it off and keep going, you should too."

BUT, instead she said, "Oh, I didn't have any morning sickness.  Poor you."  Phew!

And THEN we had some IF bonding.  She said she had IVF (which I knew already through my IF-sense), and I said yes, this had taken us a long time too.  Turns out it took both of us three years.  She had endo as well, so I told her I had it too, and that seems to be what fixed my IF issues.  Sounds like she had worse endo though (although things like the endo diet don't cross her radar).  In fact, sounds like she had really awful lady parts, she was SUPER lucky IVF worked for her on the first try.  Which she knows.

And there you have it.  I am glad I mentioned it - if I have to work from home next week, she'll know I'm not sick like with the flu or a cold, that I'm just out for a few hours.  I have been confusing coworkers, who are like, "Are you feeling better now?", because they assume I've had a cold.  Or when they're like "Are you contagious?", and I'm like, "Uh....no" (that would be great if I was!  I know who I'd hang out with!)

I can't believe I'm 10 weeks today.  You would think I'd be used to it by now, but it still surreal.  Even though it is early, we're slowly spreading the news.  It is super fun.  At the wedding we were at last night we didn't tell anyone, because DH feels we don't want to step on the toes of their happy day, which makes sense.  So I was just not drinking at all because I was the DD.  :)

Friday, September 7, 2012

First midwife visit!

8 weeks, 5 days

I still can't believe this is happening to me!

So my midwife (it is a collective) works out of an old Victorian house!  Hahha - what a bunch of hippies - I love it.  Very relaxed.  It is about a 6 min drive away - can't complain.  ;)

We talked about a lot of things, but these were some highlights:

-She first asked me why I chose a midwife.  I said I prefer the close relationship, and knowing she wasn't rushing me because she had a golf game coming up.  I prefer the initial post-natal visits right at my house.  And after having read outcomes for mom and baby are better with a midwife than an OB, I would be a little nervous going with an OB (assuming a normal pregnancy continues).  She was down with all that.
-She thinks I should move to a preggo vitamin.  She does not hold with the 'Preg Vit' that is commonly available from your doc, because she is concerned the levels of folic acid are actually too high.  Also I don't like them because they contain talc and colouring, so that's cool with me.
-She said my slight cramping, abdominal pains, crazy thirst, funny breathing - all fine
-She felt my lmyph node (which is swollen, and has been painful since like CD18), and said it was ok but we'd watch it
-She said if I go to the hospital, as long as there is no transfer of care, there would be no nurses in and out.  This greatly calms me - nurses can make you or break you, I don't like the element of chance to it.
-I would just have appts with her until...some later date (28 weeks? In my head that is just "far away"), then I will alternate with my backup midwife, so I get to know her as well.
-She said I can go on the family trip to Vietnam!  (I will be 23 weeks)  She is just concerned with the length of flight (in terms of blood clots), and being careful about drinking only bottled water and trying to eat only cooked food.
-She said I can go on the choir trip to New York!  (I will be 32 weeks)  She said that is a fine time to travel - and heck, I'll have my midwife with me! (and a backup)

Overall it was great.  She was very non-judgmental about all my choices - even though most of my choices right now are "I'm not sure yet" - she said there is no hurry.  In terms of choosing whether or not to have a home birth, she said I don't need to decide until I'm 8cm dilated!  I like that.

Right now I am leaning towards not having genetic testing, which is the next major decision - she supports that fully, and understands.  She also said if I change my mind that's fine.

Appleseed grows

Lilypie Maternity tickers