bump update, part the next

How far along? Thirty-four weeks

Vital stats? +23.2 lbs, down nearly 2 lb from last week. This puts me at no gain over four full weeks, which is both surprising and perhaps a touch concerning now. I eat. I eat a LOT. I have been having smaller dinners because my stomach is smaller and more prone to heartburn in the evenings, so I will embrace Zantac and a third snack and see if that helps.

Sleep? Still messy, still almost entirely Spud’s fault. We were away at a cottage over the weekend, and Spud was in our room. Which meant Spud was in our bed both nights, but, hilariously, because Pea and I swapped sides of the bed, the second night Spud was determined to sleep on Pea’s neck instead of mine, and I got a great night’s rest. I didn’t know he’d just sleep-migrate to and clamber on the person on the right, but it’s useful information! Previously all co-sleeping has been a disaster for me and me alone, so it’s nice to know we can swap*.

People keep asking me if I’m having trouble sleeping, and I AM, but it’s not Sprout’s fault at all!

How am I feeling physically? Fine, sometimes quite crampy through the lower belly, and I can no longer comfortably cross my legs. I think it squishes Sprout. Certainly it feels awful. I’m still slower than normal, and getting even more ponderous, but my energy has been stable and I’m still walking and carrying things and not dealing with any injuries or issues.

How am I feeling emotionally? Pretty good. The first two mamas in my bookface mom group had their babies this weekend (both induced ~2 weeks early for medical reasons), which makes it much more real that I really could have a baby quite soon. Pea is away this week, so I’m a bit stressed about managing the house and daycare and such. My mother is coming two evenings to help, and it’s not that long a trip – he’s back on Thursday evening – so it should be fine. We have a bunch of small errandy things that have built up which are now firmly on my plate during a tricky week, but I’ll just see what I can get done.

 Best moment? We had a nice weekend at a cottage with friends, though the weather was steady rain for our one full day there. We got out for short walks and treks down to the lake, donated pints of blood at a time to mosquitos, played boardgames, ate lots of tasty food, and had a chance to actually talk to each other as adults in the brief moments between all the kids finally falling asleep and the adults also turning in. I had fun, and managed to find it relaxing despite broken sleep and the generalized chaos of six kids trapped in a cabin in the rain.

We took Spud out for his first canoe ride, which he pronounced “fun” and “wibbly wobbly”.

What I miss? Beer! The cottage was a perfect spot for a cold beer overlooking the lake. I should have brought a few of my non-alcoholic ones along, but we were already bringing 47 tons of stuff with us. #TravellingWithToddlers

What I’m looking forward to? Dinner with a friend at her new house this Thursday. My last yoga session (classes are not running into the summer, too bad!). Some quieter quality time with Spud while Pea is away, as it’s been a busy few weeks and we haven’t had as much time for books and art and crafts and cuddles.

What have I done this week for the pregnancy? Nothing much! Sigh. I still intend to spend this week while Pea is away doing some prep and laundry and organizing in the evenings.

Milestones? I have, as of last night, an outie belly button. It is small, and can be compressed with mat pants’ elastic waistbands, but it is clear physical proof that we are past where I ever was with Spud’s gestation. Also proof that, despite absence of weight gained, Sprout continues to sprout.

 

* co-sleeping only happens when Spud is sick or scared or refusing to settle, maybe once every two months. We’ve had four such nights in two weeks, with travel, a cold, and the upheaval of daycare mixed together. We think he was scared of the dark at the cottage, as our nightlight attempts kept automatically turning off after we fell asleep.

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Depends how you look at it

Me: I am quite burnt out.
Pea: silent agreement, looks tired
Me: Thank you for parenting so hard today. We’ve gotten it mixed up where the person doing pick-up and drop-off* is also on bath – it makes for a lot of parenting. I know, I did it yesterday.
Pea: Yes, but it is ok. We both parent pretty hard.
Me: Well, you could say that I am doing half of the parenting all of the time, and we split the rest.
Pea: looks surprised
Me: looks meaningfully at my belly, laughing
Pea: rolls eyes
Me: it is hard work!
Pea: Oh yes! It is! But is it parenting?
Me: it is when I eat healthy…

 

In other news, I really need to institute naps in my work days somehow. My stamina is now not sufficient for my really busy days, and I’ve got a creeping deficit of fatigue happening. One of my yoga buddies (who is due next week, so ~6 weeks ahead of me) was describing how she is sometimes up to two naps a day now (she’s off work as of last week), and it sounded glorious. My colleague who had twins in January had offered me her office key, for the “napping couch”, which sounded ridiculous at the time, but which is very tempting now.

 

* Daycare is currently tricky, because there will be great transit for Pea to pop between daycare and work starting later this month, but currently there is no way for him to do any daycare drop offs or pickups unless he’s working from home or pays for an uber**. Daycare is on Innovation U campus, so in the absence of transit, it makes sense for me to do both drop off and pick up. Pea does drop off and pickup on Tuesday/Thursdays with our nanny. As a result, we are discombobulated, I never see our nanny, and no one is perfectly happy with the arrangement. Least of all Spud, who, after a stellar first two days, has spent the last two days at daycare crying. Monday was awful, but Wednesday was better – he was willing to classify it as an “ok” day on a scale of bad – ok – good, and was covered in sidewalk chalk and playing when I walked in. On Monday I walked in and he was crying at a table even before he saw me, which is not precisely the experience I’m hoping he’ll have at daycare. He was very very tired and also sick on Monday, so it’s possible a good day was never going to be in the cards, but I still feel awful about it.

** Basically, Spud owns the car. Whoever takes him to daycare leaves the car in the lot behind daycare, and whoever will pick him up has the second key and drives home. On nanny days, the car stays at home with Spud so they can go swimming and off to fun places. It’s Spud’s car, and we are Spud’s drivers.

bump update, part the next

How far along? Thirty-three weeks

Vital stats? +25 lbs, up 5 lb from last week, but up 2 lb from my previous high two weeks ago, which is on target. I was super dehydrated last weigh-in, and have rebalanced and reset, plus eaten many tasty things.

Sleep? Messy, this week. Spud had a few rough nights, and was up early other ones. I’m also now peeing once a night, around 3 am, but generally able to get back to sleep. I’m really tired, but am hopeful for a few longer nights this week.

How am I feeling physically? Slow still, and with lower stamina than I expect. The article that delineated that pregnancy causes your metabolism to run at about the same level as an ultramarathoner (near the limit of what you can calorically sustain without destroying your muscle tissue) was reassuring, because I am wiped out a lot of the time after very little effort. I’m still ok to work, but I had some longer haul days lately, and it’s harder and harder to muster the gumption required.

How am I feeling emotionally? Pretty good. Had a lovely weekend in the Big Apple. Have a lovely weekend at a cottage coming up. Have made some significant progress at work, and a call for a grant I was worried our current provincial government would nix came out, so I’m reassured at the moment. I’m worried about Spud, who had two great days at daycare and then one truly terrible one yesterday (but was very very tired, and possibly sick, and had also had a very big weekend, and I maybe didn’t set expectations for whether I would be at daycare well enough – possibly a blip. But I don’t really want him to be crying for hours at a time while at daycare, that’s not the goal AT ALL. Sad Spud = Sad Mama)

 Best moment? A glorious day in a park in Relaxed Borough, including picnic snack and picnic lunch, two playgrounds for Spud, a lovely stroll, a farmer’s market, and lots of chats with my sister. Spud was delighted with the playgrounds (and so much more assertive! Daycare has made a distinct impact already), and had a lovely day as well. The weather was perfect, and we were outside for over 6 hours that day in the end.

What I miss? Not peeing in the middle of the night. It is disruptive, and was a sudden-onset on Saturday, but consistent since then.

What I’m looking forward to? The cottage this weekend! My book club this evening (though I have not read the book entirely..). Tea with a good friend on Thursday.

What have I done this week for the pregnancy? Nothing much! Sigh. I forgot that last week I did all the research and made a decision about a stroller and car seat, but we still have to buy them. I won’t have a chance this week to do anything, but intend to spend next week while Pea is away doing some prep and laundry and organizing in the evenings.

Milestones? We are now six weeks from induction. Which is crazy soon, but also I’m crazy big, so it remains unnerving as to what will happen in the next stretch. I’m MUCH larger than I ever was with Spud, so this is new territory.

IMG_1724

The belly. 33+1.

bump update, part the next

How far along? Thirty-two  weeks

Vital stats? +21.3 lbs, down 1.7 lb from last week. Which seems off, but I also had some gastro issues this weekend so I may just be dehydrated?

Sleep? Better, finally, after two+ weeks of Spud having sleep struggles, he’s back to normal, and thus so are we. I need to pee right before falling asleep to make it to the morning, but otherwise I’ve been sleeping pretty well. I got a bit of a sleep-in on Sunday, so am also feeling refreshed.

How am I feeling physically? Fine, a bit slower than normal, and sometimes quite achy through my lower belly. My back was much stronger this week, so that also seems to have resolved. I dealt with a liquid gut all weekend, so had some urgent trips to the bathroom and a general feeling of unwell, but that also seems to have mostly resolved. I skipped my iron supplement a few days last week, so think the digestive upset may have been from reintroducing it.

How am I feeling emotionally? Better this morning than most of last week. Last week I was tired and stressed. I spent four of five weeknights out shopping (which I hate), to get either groceries or things for Spud’s inaugural daycare day, as he needed indoor shoes and a better hat and a blanket and a printed family photo and and and… I was also stressed because of a visitor on the weekend whom I find trying in the best of times and exhausting when in my home. The visit went better than expected, and Spud had lots of fun, and everyone survived without much drama, so I’m feeling better.
Pea leaves Wednesday afternoon for the Big Apple, and Spud and I will follow on Friday. Solo parenting while prepping for a trip is not ideal, but we have a metric ton of food in the fridge to eat and it’s an easy and short trip, so it should be fine.

 Best moment? Watching Spud go up and down and up and down and up and .. well, you get it.. on our big park’s giant spiral slide. He’s technically too young for it, but it’s more safely walled off than the other slides and he LOVES it.

Dropping Spud off for his first day of daycare. I hung out for a bit, and then told him I was going to go to work, and that I would be back after lunch and nap and outside play to get him. He gave me a hug, and then, when I went in for a second hug because I was feeling emotional, he brushed me off because I was in the way of the bucket of trains. So I left, and then had a little cry on the sidewalk on the way to work. I hope he won’t be scared. I hope he’ll be ok. I know he’s in good hands, but it’s a lot to have a little person adjust to. This drop off went spectacularly – I strongly anticipate Wednesday will be a bit tougher now he knows what will actually unfold for the day.

What I miss? Wine. There’s not a lot you can do when you have a houseguest you are not fond of, but wine is sometimes a good option. Plus Pea and our guest were drinking with dinner each night, and it was a bit annoying to be left out.

What I’m looking forward to? The Big Apple this weekend! So fun, I’m excited. Spud loves planes, so I’m hopeful I’ll be ok with him in the airport despite a poorly timed flight for him getting a nap.

What have I done this week for the pregnancy? Literally nothing besides not drink wine copiously as an unhealthy stress coping mechanism. I did go to yoga and for several longer walks, so I’m trying to be a bit more fitness-oriented in this final stretch.

Milestones? Nothing much this week – I’m going to say Spud starting daycare because it both swamped my week from a time and organization perspective and because Spud in daycare is how Sprout gets some quality time with me and Pea. Even though technically Spud is in daycare so that I can also get some work done, in practice it is also going to mean Sprout gets a bit of one-on-one love as well.

Bedtimes

Pea put Spud in his crib at 8:05 pm last night.

There was silence for 45 minutes.

At 8:50:

Spud (sleepily): Head and shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes, knees and toes. Head and shoulders, knees and toes. Eyes, ears, mouth and nose.

Spud (very very sleepily and quietly): Hurray!

And silence until 7:15 am.

Brain boggling fashion

We took Spud for a haircut on Monday night, which is always a bit of an ordeal. He likes the haircut salon, which has fun vehicles instead of chairs to sit in while you are being sheared, a slide, and buckets of toys. He does not like haircuts, even with the extra-special treat of a video to watch during the event itself*. To celebrate a successful cut, we always go out to dinner at the delicious ramen restaurant next door. It helps mitigate the 25 minutes of crying we’ve endured. I tip well.

Spud’s cut was finishing up when a man and his similarly-aged son walked in for their appointment. They waited while I paid, and Spud went down the slide a few times and dug around in the bucket of trucks and dinosaurs.

“Look, that little girl is having lots of fun! Do you want to go down the slide? Look, there she goes again, she’s having a great time!” I overheard the father say to his uncertain-looking child.

“Look, the little girl is playing with the bulldozer! You like bulldozers! Do you want to go see?”, he continued.

Spud was wearing: red boys trainers, striped socks, grey leggings with strawberries all over them, and a grey shirt with a glow-in-the-dark planet on it. He had just received the quintessential little boy shag haircut – not a buzz cut, but certainly not a remotely feminine shape.

We think this dad couldn’t see past the strawberry leggings, which are indeed from the girls section of Old Navy. They are Spud’s favorite pants, with his pink polkadot pants in close contention.

Spud sometimes dresses MUCH more feminine, depending on what he picks out in the morning. I shop across aisles to find interesting and enjoyable patterns that I know Spud will like, so he’s got a range of things from boys and girls departments. I would have rated this outfit as 75-80% classic boy.

I don’t mind Spud being misclassified, and certainly Spud has no idea that genders are a thing at this stage, so he doesn’t mind. I do think it’s interesting that, for this one person at this one time, a single item of “girls” clothing outweighed any other signals – I read it as “girls can wear boyish things, but a boy would never wear a girl thing” kind of perspective.

Obviously I have no idea what his actual drivers for his spoken observations were. Mostly it was funny, and I’m sure it will happen again, as Spud’s favorite colour has been pink for a few months now.

 

* Spud doesn’t get any screen time, aside from ~5 min every few days to “look at pictures of Spud!” on my phone, which we’ve been using to explain to him what he was like as a very tiny baby, and all the different stages he went through (learning to crawl, early words, etc.). I am quite sure our determination to avoid screens will erode with Sprout’s arrival and a need to sometimes quietly all hang out together, but we’ll still limit it pretty intensely. All research points to reduced/limited screens being a better case scenario for developing brains.

so mouthy

Me: “Keep your head down and do good work, don’t cause trouble pre-tenure.”

 

I was today years old when I discovered Innovation U post-docs are routinely hired on one-year contracts for lots of good reasons, but because of that they only gain access to family, dental, and mental health coverage on the first day of their third year of work.

 

Also me: “I am going to war.”

 

 

 

It is helpful that Innovation U’s brand shiny new strategic plan includes two of their five new pillars being focused on mental health. Leaving an entire population vulnerable is not going to look good, and I’m very happy to quietly highlight this to all the right people from a “look what you could easily change to show your plan is working!” perspective.

It takes a lot to move the bureaucracy of an institution such as this, but, similar to steering a giant freighter, sometimes it’s just a small nudge of the right lever that is needed to effect larger change.