Monday, June 27, 2011

Here are my confessions.

I love pregnancy. It is a joy and a blessing. It is everything that I thought it would be and more. But, I am human. And under 30. I went close to 26 weeks or 6 full months not missing anything, well not missing anything much. The last couple weeks have been a different story. I miss things.

Here's the short list:
  • Sam Summer at sunset. Or at baseball games. Or anywhere, really.
  • Margaritas with Mexican food.
  • Tubing down Western Mass rivers.
  • Waterparks.
  • Amusement Parks.
  • Flying. California.
  • Shaving my lady parts in less than a blind, awkward 20 minutes.
  • My thighs not sticking together when I run. Or walk.
  • Looking hot in bathing suit. Looking hot in anything.
  • Goat cheese in any form, especially on grilled pizza.
  • Sangria. Sangria. And Pinot Grigrio.
  • Competing in triathlons/half marathons.
  • Getting sexy in a less than awkward manner.
  • Hot vinyassa flow yoga.
  • All of Kate's Powerhouse classes.
  • Lifting heavy things.
  • Never asking for help.
  • Being completely spontaneous.
  • Highlighting my hair.
  • Going more than 30 minutes between bathroom breaks.
  • Oysters. Preferably with pinot grigio.
  • Tuna, swordfish, salmon.
To be fair, the reward is WELL worth the sacrifice. I love my changing body, even if it's not sexy. I love every kick, every movement, I literally grin every time he moves. I love the fact that I am literally GROWING life inside of me. I love sharing these moments with Jesse and seeing the unconditional love in his eyes for me and his unborn child. I LOVE picking out and looking for baby stuff. I love the thought of playing with baby Weeks, loving baby Weeks, hell, I love the thought of changing his diapers (don't tell Jesse that part). I wouldn't take any of this back, even for a second, I'm even planning on when we're going to have baby #2. But, someday, when I look back on this blog, I want to know that I am not a perfect pregnant angel. I have a different perspective than those who haven't had a loss, but I too have flaws, I too have misgivings. But I love my baby more than anything in this world already. I just can't wait to meet him.

No news=Good news

I keep growing week by week, both physically and mentally. I've come to terms that baby Weeks is really going to make it and in the meantime is growing like a weed. Seeing my feet now only happens when I break out my yoga moves, twist at an odd angle, and crook my neck to look down; and don't even get me started on the last time I've seen my "lady parts" - that is a post for another day.

All the while I get more and more excited for his arrival. Over the weekend Jesse was away camping with his brothers, which left me to myself and my cleaning. I was a maniac. I swear you can now eat off of any surface in my home, and I mean any. The outside looks just as good - I trimmed all of the hedges, hoed the garden, cleaned the gutters, washed my car and hung the laundry outside. I also fit in time to put together baby Weeks's changing table. This project made his arrival so much more real. There were hundreds of pieces and directions that might as well have been written in Chinese, but I was determined and head-strong. Hours later, every piece was in place and the table was standing strong and ready for many a diaper.

The other big happening was a big doctor's appointment Friday - I had reached the all important 28 weeks - officially 3rd trimester! This means the beginning of the end of my pregnancy as well as a barrage of tests. The biggest is the GD (gestational diabetes - more info here I walk in and the nurse hands me a 10 oz bottle of orange colored liquid and tells me I have 5-minutes to finish the whole thing. I flashed back to my Keystone Light chugging days and told myself I could do it. Plugging my nose the entire time, I downed the most overly sweet, disgusting beverage of all time in under a minute on an empty stomach (you have to take the test after fasting for at least 4 hours, I had eaten since dinner the night before).

Unfortunately, this was only the beginning. I went in quickly for my regular exam, then was ushered upstairs to get my blood drawn. Starving and shaky, my blood was extracted and I was sent downstairs for one final torture. It was time for the update of my Rhogam shot, so I dropped my drawers and got a shot in the bum.

I received the best news today, however - no news. They said if I didn't hear from their office by 5pm today, my results were normal and I don't have GD! Woohoo! Now it's time to keep moving forward and looking forward to every milestone in the final 12 weeks!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Cirlces of Life

As I quickly near my third trimester and all of the worries that plagued me over the last twenty-six weeks begin to fade, my excitement over this pregnancy heightens. Yet, with every rise, there is bound to be a fall.
Last Friday, I lost my grandfather. Although he had been battling the affects of a life-altering stroke for over a decade, I was certain that he would live to see his first great-grandchild born. Over the last few months, his face lit up every time I walked into the room, beaming with pride as my stomach grew and grew. I knew in my heart that meeting my special little guy may just give him the will to keep pushing on.
God, however, had other plans. Jesse and I had a long, fantastic visit with him on Memorial Day, on that I hoped to replicate the day before he passed. Instead of his usual jovial self, he was shell of the man I grew up loving so dearly, and it was that night I knew the end was in sight.
The last few days has been an absolute blur of commuting back and forth to my parent's home, accepting well-wishers, and doing my best to help my mom through these troubled times.
I can't lie - there was a moment or two when I kicked myself thinking that if I hadn't lost my first pregnancy last summer he would have been able to be a great-grandfather, but those thoughts quickly passed. Sometimes it's hard to see the forest through the trees - or in this case, the joy through the loss, but I think this tragedy has somehow already pulled my family closer together, something I know baby Weeks will be more than grateful for. It's kinda like my grandfather's everlasting gift - that of love.
I was lucky enough to be able to give the eulogy at his funeral, I've included the text below as to never forget those moments I hold so dear:

Robert Fredenberg was larger than life. Despite all biases granddaughters must have of their grandfathers, I can firmly state that this is plainly true. My papa lived his eighty years with such fervor, grace and determination that nothing, not even death can hold him back.

My earliest memories of him take place in River Vale, New Jersey where my papa and grandmother made their home. The journey we took down there always seemed like a vacation to another world. Crossing the Tapan Zee Bridge and looking out in the distance to see the skyscrapers of NYC, my mind filled with wonder even before my mom and dad pulled into their driveway. Once there, we summered by swimming in their in-ground pool, seeing the sights of nearby New York and feeling the unconditional love only grandparents could give.

Once we were older, my papa made the decision to move north to CT so that he could be a fuller part of the lives of my brothers and I. We continued to relish visits to their house, visits that became more frequent as I adventured out after getting my driver’s license. One thing was for sure with every visit I made to my papa’s house – love was all around. My grandfather was a man who loved life and those in it with his whole heart. This all-encompassing love was an umbrella for all that he did. Whether it was his endless generosity, voracious appetite, or taste for fine wine – all that he did was out of love.

One would think this story would begin to change after my papa began his battle with stroke in early 2000, but rather, his battle made everything about him stronger. His shear will to continue living in love was evident to me from the earliest days of his recovery. Still mending in the hospital on the day of my junior prom, my grandmother delivered a note from him, that simply stated, “Megan – have fun – love papa”. In those early days, almost everything had been stripped away from him: his ability to walk, to talk, to write. Those five simple words represented his power to survive, to go on.

After my grandmother passed almost eight years ago, my papa’s spirit was tested even more strongly than with his stroke. He loved my grandmother so completely, so devotedly, that life without her seemed impossible. Yet, once again, he persevered. My mother became his beacon of light, spending day and night with him, surrounding him with love, and showing him how much he had to live for. In the last eight years, he’s been able to see so many things – the college graduations of me and my brothers, mine and my brother Gary’s weddings, the engagement of my brother Brian (who without my grandfather’s constant prodding may have never popped the question), countless holidays, birthdays, summers, springs, and falls. Just days before he passed, I spent the afternoon with my papa on his hospital bed. During our entire visit, his hand was firmly planted on my growing stomach, as if reassuring my unborn son that he loves him. I look forward to the day where I can look into my son’s eyes and tell him how special his great-grandfather was.

Throughout these past eight years he never lost his sense of humor or ability to be larger than life. Although Aphasia, the disorder that stole away he ability to easily communicate, slowed down his speech, it never slowed down his wit. My grandfather ceaselessly flirted with waitresses and every pretty woman whose path he crossed, knew when to tell my brothers and father to get a hair cut, made sure my mother and I were always looking our best and always was able to order another glass of red wine.

As I try to find the right words to say good bye to this incredible man – I look down at this note he wrote me so many years ago and want to say the same words to him “Papa – have fun up there, Love, Megan”.

What a belly!

25.5 weeks!
I had another great doctor appointment today, good heartbeat and fundal height still on target (actually measuring a week ahead right now). I'm working hard to eat healthier and work out more to help curve weight gain, but it seems impossible right now. My only concern has been some pretty intense hip pain at night - the doctor assured me this is totally normal, and that it is due to hormonal changes so not much is going to help. I also booked my big 28 week appointment where I'll do the 1-hour gestational diabetes test, get another RHogam shot in my tush (for those who don't know I have a RH negative blood type, more info on being RH negative here, and get a bunch of blood drawn. Fun, right? For now - my gigantic belly!