Monday, February 22, 2010

Maternity updates, of a sort

I kind of suck at this whole pregnancy journaling thing. It's pretty easy to see why. Daily updates from weeks 5-26 would have been "pregnancy sucks. I barfed x times today. I can't get out of bed. Oh yeah, and pregnancy sucks." 21weeks x 7days a week = repeat that update 147 times. Then normal life (plus a few added pregnancy-related foibles) happens from 26 weeks until about, hmmmm, now.

Tomorrow I make 32 weeks. For the uninitiated, this means...nothing, really. A "normal" pregnancy lasts about 40 weeks. Or not. It's even more confusing than you think, seriously. The system dates from before anybody really understood the science of conception. Sure, various cultures have had various levels of understanding about how women get pregnant and how long pregnancies should last and how on earth you tell where a woman was beyond "OMG you're huge/not huge/ready to pop/about-halfway-maybe." We're currently operating on something called Naegele's Rule, thanks to a (I'm assuming) well intentioned obstetrician who in the 1700s determined that women deliver, on average, 280 days after the beginning of their last menstrual period.

When I was 1 week pregnant, the baby was not yet conceived.

This system has been in place for so long that it would just confuse everyone even more to start dating from conception.

There's also good evidence that while the 280 day average may have held in Naegele's time, with many grand-multips (moms of 5+) in the calculation, 288 may be more accurate today, particularly for primips (first time moms).

Not that I'm going to nitpick my due date. I almost chose it because I like it. Not quite, but almost. My cycles were wonky. Conception happened sometime "between this birth on this day and that birth about a week later." I've had all my babies slightly before their due dates anyway, so any safe guess will do.

Anyway, bringing the train of thought back in line...

Now is when things start to get interesting for me again. Not in a bad way, or in a good way, really...just MORE.

Today at the YMCA at LEAST 10 people asked me when I was due, prefaced with some variation of "it must be soon." I got my first "is it TWINS?" comment. And two people, one of whom I've never met before, think I'm having a boy.

I have indeed had a growth spurt this past week. I've gained about 4lb and I *feel it.* I'd like to say that the BABY had a growth spurt, but I'd be lying. *I* had a growth spurt, and baby may have incidentally put on a little weight while it was already doing that growing-ridiculously-fast thing that fetuses do. But probably all the weight went to my face and my ass and baby gained it's prim and proper 1/4 lb this week.

Speaking of the Y (just to keep the non-organized unflow of this post going), today was the first day of a new session (=kid swim lessons and classes of various sorts). Our membership cost went up (DAMNIT) but still costs less than anything else I could be doing; even buying a membership at a dedicated gym just for me would cost more, and this way the kids' swimming/ballet/PE/whateverelse lessons are included in the price. Today I put all three in homeschool PE at the same time and spent 45 minutes on the eliptical machine. There is no way that is happening anywhere else. I didn't even have to get up at ungodly-early to do it before Fran had to leave for his own gym-then-work time. TRAPPED.

I came home to find a package (yay!) of the maternity clothes I bought, just a shirt and a sweater. @($*&@#(*$&rs sent the wrong stuff! Like I have weeks to send it back and get new stuff? I told myself I was splurging on a sweater (all of $19) because the maternity sweater that lasted all pregnancy last time was exposing a strip of belly (ugh!) and I still have almost 2 months of cool weather before I have a baby. And then I'll still need bigger-than-usual clothes for a while. Needless to say, I am not a happy customer at the moment. I wanted just one shirt and one sweater that fit, damnit. Just one. Not too much to ask, I would think. The normal clothes I am still wearing (yes, seriously, I'm not wearing pregnancy clothes - I hated them so much I gave them away and I'm GLAD, I wouldn't want to be wearing them anyway) are stretched out enough now that you can see a little through the knit at the belly. You can't see anything important; just when the light catches it right it's like "OH, you can kind of see skin color through that shirt!"

Speaking of belly skin, I thought there was no more uncharted territory on my belly after 3 kids had left stretch marks behind. Apparently there was, a little higher on the right side, where I have a nice little peninsula of stretchmark now thanks to baby trying to push its head into territory I'm pretty sure my liver actually needs to be occupying even now. I think it's ever-so-obnoxious that this baby still hasn't picked a position. Not that it's a big deal for baby still to be flipping around at 32 weeks. It's just uncomfortable, especially since this kid is apparently destined to be a drama queen/king and doesn't just flip, but flips in a BIG OBNOXIOUS STRETCHED-OUT LIMBS-EVERYWHERE kind of way. And sometimes tries to hang out in places where really (seriously kid, why?) the amount of available space is not suitable. I understand that it's roomy in there after 3 other kids have stretched things out a bit, but still, back-up-limbs-down doesn't work at this point; I'm just not that huge. And the ligaments that are desperately trying to keep my uterus from falling off my body *really hurt* when those weird positions and position-changes happen.

This baby is still unnamed. Suggestions welcome.