[This blog post has been in the works for a few weeks]
That, my friends, is baby Grims #2 at 9 weeks, 3 days’ gestation, a whopping 2.5cm long, crown to rump (head, showing brain ventricles on left, two nubbins suggesting arms in middle, and abdomen on right). You might notice that the ultrasound tech has helpfully named him/her Teddy Graham. We liked the ultrasound tech immensely.
The story so far:
mid- to late June: Baby-making time, so designated because it was the first cycle that followed my goal race for the year.
9 July: Period supposed to arrive. Period does not arrive. I take a pregnancy test early in the a.m. Negative. I savor a beer.
14 July: Period still hasn’t shown. I pick up another 2-pack of pregnancy tests at Target, along with some razors, new underwear for T, and a sweater on clearance. Pee on the stick when we get home: ever so slightly positive. Woohoo!
15 July: I tell my family doc at a previously scheduled appointment and make an appointment with my OB/GYN for…AUGUST 22? Are you kidding? (My doc in South Bend wanted to see me immediately, and I had my first ultrasound just before 6 weeks.) We decide we’ll wait to tell other people. We do not wait to tell other people (though we don’t tell everyone).
16-17 July: I have a couple waves of nausea, but more along the lines of, “I do NOT want to eat that, thank you,” accompanied by “Why do I not have all the fruit in the world in arm’s reach?” This is par for my Nuala-pregnancy course.
Mid- to late July: “Won’t it be cool if I do the sprint triathlon on August 18 while pregnant? I’m going to be so awesome!”
Late July to late August: ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ…
Early August: Mid-section becoming sausage-like. Regularly experiencing vivid fantasies about rich desserts, trying to tamp said fantasies down with whole-milk greek yogurt and dried fruit and nuts. It works sometimes. Other times, I eat more doughnuts and miniature Reese’s cups than I should. I suffer the consequences.
All of August: Good heavens, the bloating. The indigestion. Someone has replaced my innards with knots of cranky flesh. I’m already developing a bit of a pooch, but I’d wager 90% of it is attributable to gas at any given moment.
13 August: I climb up in the attic to retrieve the few maternity clothing items I saved because pants are becoming too uncomfortable to sit down in at the end of the day. I don the leggings and vow to reevaluate my position on leggings as pants, as well as caftans. The leggings are a bit too big, in part because I’m starting out about 8lb thinner than last time, but they won’t be too big for long.
14 August: I run out on a student mid-meeting to empty my bladder because I’m having intolerable squirmy feelings in the vicinity of my uterus akin to the sensation in your calves when you have restless legs at night. I’m supposed to only be about 10 weeks at this point, but the feeling is unmistakeable, and I count it as the first time I felt movement.
22 August, morning: First OB appointment, at the end of which we see pictures of Teddy Graham shimmying around in its wee bag o’ fluid. Once again, I’ve overestimated the baby’s age, this time by a week and a half, so who knows what that intolerable squirmy feeling was? The low point of the appointment is a reminder that because my eggs are SO OLD, the baby stands a greater chance at being afflicted with some terrible genetic malady. We’re given the option of doing early genetic testing (before 12 weeks) at a fetal-maternal specialist or waiting until the second trimester. We choose the second trimester, because (a) for God’s sake, I’m not that old, (b) I’d have to take time off to travel to Nashville or Louisville, and (c) it’s the right choice for us given what we believe we can handle as a family.
22 August, evening: Once we peel Nuala away from her afternoon viewing of WordGirl on the iPad, we show her the pictures and explain what’s going on in there and what we’re likely to bring home from the hospital in late March. She’s a little weirded out by the pictures but totally gets the idea of Mama growing a baby in her belly since she’s been assuming that because her best friend has a little sister, she will have one too. She’s a little disappointed that SHE’S not growing the baby in her belly, but it appears that she’ll make peace with reality on that point. However, she decides the baby must be a girl and is really, really not interested in having a brother. We foresee little or no progress on this peace-making front until and possibly after the baby arrives.
23 August: “Nuala, you have one more bite left of oatmeal…” “No, Mama, you eat it so you can grow your baby.” I adore this kid.
24 August: Nuala climbs into bed with us, sprawls across my body to snuggle, then slides off, saying, “Oh! Mama, I don’t want to smush your baby.” I try to explain that no smushing was going to happen, but she insists. If she keeps this up, I will miss my Nuala snuggles terribly.
25 August: I’d planned to volunteer at the Louisville Ironman with JJ today but have been laid low by a cold that’s settled in my chest. Online, I watch incredible people whom I don’t know swim, bike, and run 140.6 miles on a day that turned out to be 90 degrees. I think I’m not convinced that the iron distance isn’t totally crackpot, but I think about the months, probably years of work it’ll take to get there if I do want to get there. First, I’m frustrated by the two-ish years I’m losing to gestating, birthing, and breastfeeding a baby, and then I think: holy cow, I’m free after that. My body will ever after be my own to punish–I mean enjoy–as I like. Woohoo!
26 August: 10 weeks. Nuala is newly fixated on eggs hatching and although she knows deep down that only birds and reptiles (and these abominations of nature) hatch from eggs, she has decided that cats and dogs also hatch from eggs. This morning, she crawled into my lap, I placed a pillow (or “egg”) on top of her until she was ready to “hatch,” and then I was supposed to woof like a “mommy puppy” would for its “baby puppy.” I’m so confused, but this is perfectly reasonable to her. Whatever.
Told my big boss today since my belly is more conspicuous than I thought when I left the house this morning. Not big, but the difference between my normal frame and what I’ve got going on now is noticeable. Probably ought to pull the trigger on this blog post sooner than later, too.