Monday, September 15, 2008

30-week plus update

The 17-year old Honda Civic didn't make it. Repairs over the next several months would have cost more than the Bluebook value, so the car is being donated. You can read the full obit/eulogy for this fine automobile here. I even got emotional when we left the car, and I have professed not to be attached to it or even like it all that much.

Seth's parents are kindly loaning us their Toyota station wagon for a few months (they're headed back to London for a bit, so they won't need it) until we have the time, money and wherewithal to buy another car. We wish we could get by with just one vehicle, but what with me planning to stay home for six months, and with anticipated daycare dropoff/pickup schedules, I just don't think we can do it. Despite the wonderful walkability of our neighborhood, it will be winter when the baby's born and I might stab someone in the eye with the nearest pacifier if I can't get in the car and get the heck out of the house with the baby some days. If we got into our dream daycare location at the Library of Congress, the pickup/dropoff thing would be MUCH easier, since it's walking distance from our house, and on the way to work. Don't even get me started on the lack of daycare facilities in the federal building that we work in, and the total disservice that is to the employees. Or the sparse options for daycare in our immediate neighborhood, despite the evident baby boom. Forget the chicken in every pot - there's a kid (or two) in every Bugaboo around Capitol Hill these days. But our car issues are immediately mostly solved. If I can get the A/C fixed in mine soon, that will also be helpful, since September in DC has decided to be muggy thus far, and I swear that my internal body temperature has risen five degrees today just to spite me and my lack of vehicle A/C. I'm just feeling distinctly.....swampy today. We are waaaay past "glowing" here, let me tell you, and into the "hot mess" category.

In other 30+ week news, after much (probably unnecessary) freaking out, I DO NOT have gestational diabetes. I did the initial glucose screening test a day after getting back from vacation, and an hour after wiping out on the sidewalk on my way to the doctor's office and scraping up knees and palms. Seth and I were walking to his car (R.I.P.) so that he could drive me to the appointment, and I stumbled slightly on some uneven sidewalk, and just....couldn't....quite...recover. Total wipeout. Cell phone and bottle of glucose solution that I was supposed to drink in two minutes went flying. Seth couldn't catch me, so he ran after the bottle of glucose solution as it rolled down the sidewalk, and retrieved my cell phone. He then heaved me to my feet, and tried to ascertain whether I was injured. I whimpered that I had to be OK, because I had to drink the stupid glucose solution right now and had to get in the car to get to my goddamn doctor's appointment. I got in the car, knee and palms bleeding, chugged the glucose, noted the time so I could tell the nurses when to draw my blood (precisely one hour after finishing the drink), and away we went to the doctor's office. Once at the office, I scrubbed up my wounds in the bathroom, noted the total lack of large band-aids to be had in an OB-GYN office, and got my blood drawn. My doctor was quite alarmed at my scrapes, and made sure I didn't fall on my belly, have broken wrists, or anything else. I couldn't explain to her that I just do this kind of thing on an annual-ish basis, and that being pregnant had little to do with it, except that my usual recovery reflexes were inhibited. We then went to get Two Amys pizza to nurse my wounds and my poor sugar-overloaded system.

Fast-forward a couple of days. The doctor's office calls to tell me I've failed the one-hour screening test, and have to come back in for the three-hour glucose tolerance test. What I didn't know then was that SO MANY things can make you "fail" the initial screening test - stress, having eaten something a couple of hours before, the time of day you take the test, etc., and that a very high percentage of women who "fail" the first test are totally fine on the second. So, I was completely hysterical for about three days, since they called me about this on a Friday, and I couldn't take the next test until Tuesday. I Googled everything in the universe, slept badly, cried, and waited for Tuesday. I also weighed myself about 20 times, because I'd felt sort of chastised at my doctor's office for my weight gain. Their scale showed that I had gained 27 pounds since becoming pregnant. The nurse mentioned that the scale was "off" and subtracted a couple of pounds. My OB raised her eyebrows, and I was told to watch my weight gain for the remaining weeks, because it would just be harder on the baby and harder on me if I gained too much weight. But when I weighed myself at home, I was 5-ish pounds less than what the doctor's scale had said. Rapid weight gain can also be a signal for gestational diabetes, so pile on some more hysteria about giant babies born with low blood sugar. Of course, the 3-hour test last Tuesday showed that all my blood sugar numbers were totally normal from all four fricking times they draw your blood during those tests. Vampires. And every time I've weighed myself in the last two weeks, I have still weighed less than I (allegedly) did at the OB's office that day.

But all of that is over. And I have finally done what I should have done (and wanted to do) months ago: I switched from my OB practice to a midwife practice. I have also therefore switched from planning to give birth in a hospital with a 40% c-section rate to now planning to give birth in a birth center with a 7% c-section rate. Those numbers sound quite a lot better to me on the slice me-dice me scale. All along, I really knew I wanted to be in a midwife practice, and that I wanted a non-medicalized birth, and every opportunity for a natural birth, if at all possible. The more I read, the more I confirmed this for myself. I'm not afraid of the pain or effort of labor. I am, on the other hand, very afraid of hospitals and unnecessary medical procedures. I have many, many reasons for this decision, and lots of stats, facts and stories to back it all up. If you're interested in this highly politicized and emotional hotbed of discussion about birth options, you can start here, here, and here for some source material.

Moving on to another birth story - our house! Our basement is really close to being finished. Our contractor thinks it will be done by October 1! Mmmm, waaaasher and dryyyyer. Laaaauuundry. Saaatellite TV......He's also aiming for a November 10 completion date for the kitchen, but we're not holding our breath on that one. If it's not completely done, we will survive. Hopefully without too many total hysterical breakdowns as it gets down to the wire on my due date. (Note to baby - this will be the one time in your life where I really insist that it will be just fine for you to show up late. Say a week? That would be greeeaaat.)

Seriously, can you believe this is the same room as this? In the photo above, there will again be a window in the bay - they just drywalled over the opening, and will put in the new window when it's ready.
This is looking towards the back of the house - the door to the back yard is on the left. The hallway on the right leads to our massive new closets, laundry area and full bathroom.
Do you like any of these paint colors? Me neither. Too light, too light, and too....peachy. But those were the only colors in the Benjamin Moore sample sizes that I thought might work. I sprung for a quart in another, darker shade today. Let's hope that's it.

However will we give this glamorous life up once our fancy kitchen is done? Yes, those are our dishes being done in the bathtub. It's so thrilling every night that we could just pass out from the excitement.

1 comment:

Lorie said...

I'm so glad Fran sent me your blog link. You're such a good writer! and this is a great way for long distance relatives like me to keep up with what's happening with you guys. We can certainly relate to what you're going through. In fact, we not only lived in our house while remodeling, but we did most of the work ourselves while working f-t. Tara was born (preemie) during all that, and the remodel went on for...well, I don't know if we can say it's over yet ;-). Talk to you soon, I hope.
Aunt Lorie