Friday, March 29, 2013

Our Boy

Here are some pictures from our ultrasound the other day. I'm still trying to get used to the idea that we're having a son, but we have proof positive. The ultrasound tech was convinced there was no mistake (Brad is walking around like a peacock). Anyway, I can't wait to cuddle him!

So THOSE are the feet that have been kicking me nonstop!

That is a Booker profile if ever I saw one.

Our sweet boy.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Anticipation

Well, the countdown has begun for the big day! My ultrasound is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon and we’re on pins and needles around here. Not only to make sure the baby is healthy (of course) but also to find out the gender of our little one.

It sounds so cliché but Brad and I will be happy with either a boy or girl so long as it’s healthy (and even if it’s not, frankly).  I think sisters would be sweet but I also thing one of each would be fun.

Our families, I fear, are a different story. As much as they keep saying they’ll be happy with whatever comes along the disproportionate number of granddaughters on both sides of our family leads me to believe they are pulling for a boy. I’ve heard more than once that the Booker name may well die out if we have a girl (all of Brad’s cousins have girls, too). No pressure, though. And when I discussed my concerns with my mother she didn’t exactly deny my suspicions. I believe her exact response was something like, “Yeah, well…” before trailing off. This is particularly disconcerting to me as we are statistically more likely to have a girl given both my age and our family history.
The next big topic around here will be deciding on a name for the baby. Brad and I agreed that we would forgo all arguments for or against specific baby names until after the baby’s gender was determined; that way we’d only be quarrelling over one name and not two. I also have pretty strict guidelines a potential name must meet before being a serious contender in the name game:

1. When you see the name printed the pronunciation should be intuitive for the average person.

2. When you hear the name spoken the spelling should be intuitive for the average person.

3. It must be a name to grow up with (sound equally appropriate for a child as well as an adult).

4. It must be a real name and not a made up one.

5. And finally, it must be uncommon, but not unheard of. 

Brad is a little simpler. When we found out we were having a girl last time he just presented the names of girls he had crushes on in grammar school. I told him firmly that Jessica and Erika were fine names… in 1978.
Harper has been very helpful. She has submitted the following offerings for consideration:

Cracker
Baby Bepper

Peter Piper, and my personal favorite,
Wallaceandgromit  

Noted, Harper. Noted.
Stay tuned for the next exciting installment!  Also, our day at the zoo:

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There is a special animatronic dinosaur exhibit at the zoo this month. I thought Harper would love it but it turned out to be a little overwhelming for her. She spent most of her time there wanting to be held. The gift shop, however, was a big hit. Of course, on our way out of the zoo she was begging to see the "big dinosaurs" again, so I guess she's not scarred for life after all.  
 
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We went to the zoo with friends Scott and his adorable daughter Zoe, who is Harper's buddy. After the animatronic display the girls got to go in the bounce house and dig in the sand box for "dinosaur bones." Harper was too enthralled to listen to instructions. I am a terrible parent for not putting the camera down to follow-through, but they were just so darn cute together. Bad mommy!  
 
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Penguins!
 
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Two tired kiddos at the end of the day. Harper crashed as soon as we got home. Thank you for the zoo day, Scott and Zoe!
     

Friday, March 8, 2013

The Ugly Truth

So, I’m pregnant again. I’m just starting to wrap my head around the idea after getting used to the plan that we were going to become parents again via foster care. It has been both exciting and overwhelming, especially because I am much too old to be pregnant. MUCH too old. I don’t know what we were thinking getting ourselves in to this.
So I’m trying to abate my fears by focusing on the positive. Here’s a list I made for just that purpose:   
What I Love About Being Pregnant
Thick, glossy, luxurious hair. Pantene models have got nothing on me.
Strangers telling me I am glowing.
Naps.
Being encouraged to eat whatever I want, whenever I want.
Feeling the baby kick, especially for the first time.
Actual photo of me taken as I was eating a typical pregnancy-breakfast.

That being said, if we are really being honest here there are a few negative, albeit minor, things about having a bun in the oven. Which led me to my second list:
Things I Hate About Being Pregnant
People giving me The Look; the one that says, “Is she pregnant or just suddenly fat?”
Strangers rubbing my belly.
Friends rubbing my belly.
This is how I feel when I am pregnant.

The acne of a 15 year old boy.
Being perpetually tired. Bone tired.
Dealing with the insurance company. I know, this one is never fun. But try it when you are eight weeks pregnant and hormonal and they can’t get your billing right let alone call you back even though they’ve been promising to do so every day for three weeks.
Panty liners (Come on, we all know why. Don’t make spell it out.)
Super-nose. My husband’s scent was so strong I couldn’t kiss him. Not his BO, not his cologne, just his scent that I have happily lived with every day for nearly four years. I couldn’t pucker up without…
Dry heaving. Twice a day every day for ten weeks. And when the dry heaving stopped...
Food cravings. I ate an entire bag of Doritos in two days (which I never, ever eat). I am not proud of this. Also, I was pretty sure I was going to die if I couldn’t have chile relleno, so I did, and immediately became vigorously ill.
Sideburns. Yes, I am growing sideburns. There. I said it. Move along people.
Me in six weeks time.

Doula shopping. This one was a disappointment because I was really looking forward to interviewing doulas. So far I have turned down a woman who literally couldn’t understand the questions I was asking her, a woman who told me she was screening calls to dodge creditors and a chain smoker. True story. 
Maternity wear. Who designs this stuff? Sadists? And even after spending a small fortune in a maternity boutique where the sales lady swore I don’t look like a whale tented in cotton knits still…
Nothing fits, especially…
The humongous underwear I am reduced (no pun intended) to wearing.
I tried this on at the mall. The fit was a little snug but the vertical stripes were very slimming. 

Heartburn.
Round ligament pain (aren’t they round enough?!?!?!)
Braxton Hicks contractions.

Sciatica.
Sneezing (see panty liners, above).
Elephant legs (which go perfectly with the circus tent!).
Waddling.  
All right, all right, I hate being pregnant. Hate it. Which makes me a terrible person because I have pretty unremarkable pregnancies (knock wood).  My sister-in-law had four children despite having hyperemesis gravidarum, which makes her a virtual superhero, and I whine because I am a little uncomfortable. But there it is.
My stupid superhero sister-in-law and her gorgeous family. Way to make me feel inadequate, Bess. 

I think the thing I hate most is that when I’m pregnant I can’t do whatever I want whenever I want. My body isn’t, you know, mine. I can’t eat delicious, unpasteurized cheeses, or sushi (veggie, but potentially tainted with raw fish germs) or even have eggs over easy for breakfast (my comfort food). I can’t work because I can’t risk getting a dog bite because I can’t be on antibiotics. My whole life is reduced to reading labels and referring clients to other behaviorists. I start to feel like a caged animal and imagine doing things I would NEVER do in real life.
So remember, if all of a sudden I start talking about learning how to free dive or start organizing an underwater spelunking club or take up skydiving, it is only because I am pregnant. It’ll pass*.
*in only 23 more weeks, give or take.
Ooo! Gator wrestling! That sounds fun! Who's in?