Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Perfection is...

Dinner for two...well three

Watching the Wonder Years

Talking baby names

Big bowls of ice cream

Back rubs

Belly kisses

Having my hubby home <3

Friday, May 27, 2011

Nerves

Today is the day I've been anxiously awaiting since the end of March: hubby comes home after nine long weeks of training.

Normally, I'm overcome by excitement for the entire week. I usually can't stop thinking about how I can't wait to pick him up at the airport. And while this time I am no less excited than usual, I'm finding myself having a new emotion about him coming home: I'm nervous.

Derek left two weeks after we found out I was pregnant. He left me while my body was essentially the same-looking, and the only changes going on were well within me. I was sick, not sleeping, not cooking, not hungry for anything but saltines and ginger ale, and exhaustingly overly-emotional. I know, he missed all the good parts.

Now it's nine weeks later, and I am 16 weeks pregnant. I am sleeping, cooking, cleaning,  and not so overly-crazed with emotions (ok, well, maybe a little...)....but I'm also developing the appetite of a small elephant, growing a belly the likes of which I never could have imagined, having to pee every five minutes, wearing prego bras and maternity jeans, and rubbing cocoa butter all over in a desperate attempt to slow the stretch marks that seem to be overtaking my tummy with a vengeance (which, I'm officially now referring to as battle scars). To say that I'm a bit nervous to see my husband, and let him see me, is an understatement.

What will he think of me now? Will he love my belly...and my stretch marks? Will he think my maternity clothes are ugly or weird? Will he tease me for how hungry I might be, or what I might be hungry for, or how often I have to pause the DVR to pee? Will the sight of his pregnant wife freak him out all together, or will he love it?

I know I probably sound totally irrational, but I can't help it. Never before has Derek returned from being away, whether it be deployments, training or even me being away at college...to find me looking so physically different, and being so emotionally different. I don't really know what to expect with his reaction to me, and I'm almost fearing this unknown.

This time he's not coming home to me, he's coming home to pregnant me...

Monday, May 23, 2011

Short and Sweet: Changes

I had to laugh today. I was cleaning our bedroom, dusting the nightstand, and I realized that pregnancy has literally changed every aspect of my life...including my nightstand...

The pre-prego nightstand: water bottle, lotion and gossip mags



The prego nightstand: waterbottle, Tums for indigestion, Bnatal nausea lollipop, pre-natal vitamins, Quease-ease oil stick, cocoa butter, thermometer (from when I was feeling off after 10 hours of traveling...just wanted to be safe!) and pregnancy books.

My, how things are changing....

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Hard To Understand

I have heard from more than one man, whether it be my husband, my father, a friend or some dude on TV, that pregnant women are stunningly beautiful. As a pregosaurus rex myself, I'm finding this one hard to understand.

In conversation while I was at home with my parents, I happened to mention how awkward I thought I looked, and my mom reminisced about feeling the same when she was pregnant. It's just weird. Nothing is the same...not the same shape, not in the same place, or just not looking like it used to. To put it bluntly, I've got a growing baby bump, incoming stretch marks that no miracle cream seems to be able to stop, a widened tushy (even though I've yet to gain any weight back from what I lost in the first trimester), and skin that just won't stop breaking out. Honestly, I think that I look like a 4 month pregnant disaster.

And yet somehow, my dad thought my mom looked simply amazing every time she was pregnant....and apparently my husband is liking this whole pregnant look on me as well. I don't get it.

Funnily enough, when I see other pregnant women, I constantly find myself thinking how adorable they look. I think every other woman's belly is cuter and more perfect than mine and none of them seem to have acne like a 16 year old...they all just look cute. How come I can't look like them???

Maybe some day I'll look back and think that I looked cute with a baby bump...some day....but right now, I think I just look like a plain, weird, prego hot mess.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Home

I arrived home on Saturday around 6:30, and walked out of the airport to find my parents and one brother waiting for me. It was truly a feeling like no other. I haven't been home since December, when Derek and I PCSed to our new station...and I don't think I truly realized just how homesick I was until I arrived here.

So far I've spent the past week eating everything I couldn't get in Washington...Italian hoagies, Pica's upside down pizza, seafood and steaks grilled at my Mimom's house and then some. I've been around people who call me "hun" and say "wooder" instead of water. I've watched the 6 o'clock news to see images of the Philadelphia Zoo, updates on my favorite team, the Phillies, and weather that doesn't include ten consecutive days of rain.

Being home is such a wonderful thing, and I can't think of anything better to do when Derek is away. I spent my birthday with my mommy, I've had dinners with my family and gotten to catch up with neighbors and friends whom I've known all my life. I've had the ladies at the nail and hair salons guessing when my baby will actually arrive, aunts guessing what I'm having, and quiet nights of sleep that are only interrupted when I have to get up to pee in the middle of the night. I've had familiar nights of watching Law and Order on the couch with my mom, hugs from my daddy, and laughs that send you to tears compliments of my brother's hilarity. What's better than that? Well, I can tell you that what's better is having parents who are so happy you're home, they offer to change your flight so you get to stay here for an extra week and a half.

This is what it is to be home. And it's truly where my heart is.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Factoids

Fun Friday Facts:

1) On average, the only part of a pregnant woman's body that will remain unchanged by the end of her pregnancy is her ears. During pregnancy, your ears will not grow, shrink, bloat, swell or do any of the other weird things the rest of your body will.

2) Today is Military Spouse Appreciation Day. If you know an Army, USMC, USAF or Navy wife, please take the time to appreciate her. We may not have signed those contracts to serve, but we certainly serve in the silent ranks!

3) I get to go home to Pennsylvania for ten whole days of family lovin' and birthday goodness. Yay for me :)

Enjoy your weekend all!!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Using the Senses: Listen and Feel

I think we often take for granted the senses we are given, and our ability to experience life with them. Today I gained a new appreciation for two of them: the ability to hear and feel. For the first time, I heard my baby and for the first time, I felt my baby.

The only simple word to describe it all is amazing. The sound of this tiny little person's heartbeat brought tears to my eyes, and the feeling of his or her movements tickling my tummy sends shockwaves of joy throughput my body. I am taking full advantage of allowing myself to sit, relax and enjoy those little tickles...and I've been reliving the awesome sound of that tiny, rapid heartbeat all day. These are the experiences that are beginning to make this process so worth it. That little heartbeat and those little tickles are making the nausea, food aversions and crazed nights of insomnia a distant memory, and creating a new feeling of anxiousness as we await this little one's arrival.

This whole mommy thing is becoming a pretty awesome experience.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Making Insomnia Work

While since hitting the second trimester my insomnia has faded significantly, I'm still finding that if I am not completely pooped out at bed time, I'm going to have one heck of a time trying to fall asleep.

My solution? To utterly exhaust myself at night.

I have discovered that during pregnancy, if I put all of my energy into doing things like scrubbing my kitchen (which, is evidently my favorite household chore lately) or folding massive amounts of laundry and then thoroughly dusting my entire apartment, I can literally send my body and mind into having a massive need to crap out and sleep. Kinda cool, right? I think it is. Seriously, if the normal person does stuff like that at night it sends their minds into overdrive...it's like exercising before bed...a big mistake. Those endorphins get flowing and keep you wide awake. Not for me! While I still get those feel good endorphins, my prego superpowers take over and exhaust me, instead of wake me. It's pretty great I think.

So now, on nights when I know I'll be wide awake, I make that insomnia work for me. My house is clean, my laundry is done, the computer, printer and shredder are officially out of my living room...and I am sleeping (somewhat) through the night. I am making the best out of potentially sleepless nights and it's paying off for me.

I'm giving myself a pat on the back for this one. Don't judge me.

Monday, May 2, 2011

A Baby-Wearin' Mama

It's about 10:40 PM here in Washington, and while normally I'm a-snoozin' away by now...tonight, not so much. And naturally, as things go with insomnia, the wheels in my mind are turning and I'm thinking all about the kind of mommy I want to be...

Tonight's decision: I want to be a baby-wearin' mama.

When we found out that our little punkin would be arriving before Christmas this year, it was an easy, early decision that we'd be flying home to Pennsylvania for the holidays. While many people are all about staying home for the holidays when a baby arrives, for us, the decision was made based on this: with a baby that little, and two of us traveling, it would be much easier than with a squirmy toddler. And besides the fact that this will be the first time many of our family will get to meet the baby, we also plan on having him or her baptized while we're home with family, friends and people we feel are important to be involved in our children's lives.

So anyway...the whole flying home for Christmas thing sparked a question of how we wanted to travel with the baby. Did we want to pay for a seat on the plane and bring a carrier on the flight with us? Did we simply want to hold the baby the entire time? My ultimate solution and the one I feel will not only be best, but a nice bonding experience for the three of us is to wear the baby. Yep, wear it.

Something I've always wanted to have when we started our family is a nice baby sling or carrier, like those Baby Bjorn ones. I always felt like there is something so calming to a baby and so soothing and comfy about wearing them in a sling. Think about it, when babies are in the womb, one of the first sounds they are able to hear is the sound of their mother's heartbeat. And when babies are born sick or premature, one of the best treatments many feel is for the infant to be held skin-to-skin. While no one will be naked on our flight, I'm feeling as though the effect will be the same. With the baby's head resting on my or my husband's chest, listening to our heartbeats, and warmly snuggled right up against us, what better way to go?

And this whole baby-wearing thing isn't just going to apply to flying home for holidays either. It's something I'm finding myself anxious to do more and more as this pregnancy goes on. I am so looking forward to cleaning, shopping and even resting with my baby snuggled up on me, knowing that it's the most special place for that infant to be.

Now the hunt for an awesome sling begins...

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Chug, Chug, Chug!

When normal people hear the words "chug, chug, chug!" it's usually pertaining to some type of alcoholic beverage. My prior-to-prego drink of choice: a freezing cold Corona with a hefty slice of lime in it. Nothing says summer to me more.

Now, when I think of chugging, it's pertaining to water. And lots of it.

Never in my life have I found myself so thirsty. Ironically enough, for as thirsty as I am, I ended up in the ER with dehydration a little over a week ago...however I'm chalking that up to being a fluke because all I do is drink water these days. The doc informed me that, potentially being prone to dehydration, I need to consume about a gallon of water a day. To the average person, this could potentially seem like a lot...to me, it's nothing these days. I'm finding that I'm drinking at least 4-32 ounce Nalgene bottles full of water each day, in addition to the multiple glasses of milk I crave each morning. I drink water like it's never going to exist again. And as a result, of course, I have to pee every 20 minutes.

Ahh the randomness of pregnancy. It just seems to get more interesting every day...