Monday, January 30, 2012

It was good enough for grandma...

Not much to report today, just wanted to share this pic of me having a 1930's night out last night. Glad I bought this plus sized 30s dress last summer, could almost pass for a maternity dress!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Two months from now...

Two months from today is my due date. Not that he'll arrive right on time on his due date, but it's at least a ballpark. Like most third trimester types, I am obsessed with keeping him in as long as possible. Even though every day that goes by increases his viability and decreases the likelihood of long term disabilities or complications, it's still way early for him to be born.

At the same time I'm terrified of running late and having to be induced, too. It sounds pretty gnarly, being induced. Also I would imagine it would just be maddening after a while - going past your due date, and being so uncomfortable. But sitting here right now I have no idea what my fate is.

I also am better able to picture him now that I've seen the 4 D ultrasound pics - I have his pudgy little face in my mind all the time. He looks like "us", in my opinion - my mother, my sister, me. But of course that can't be the whole story - he's going to look like his dad, too, and I have no idea what his dad looks like, so certain things will just have to be guessed at, especially as he gets older. Still, I saw his little smile in there and that is for sure my family.

I am quite interested in investing in some kind of post-partum belly compressor; I've read lots of reviews online and they all seem to have lots of pluses and minuses. Don't get me wrong, I'm not obsessed with losing weight after the baby; I know it is what it is. But I would like to do anything I can to speed that process along - I've got vintage clothes to squeeze back into at some point!

So here's a picture of my new best friend. Pretty much every night now is a 4-times-a-night wake up to take more Tums, pee, and drink water kind of night. Had a nap on the couch and it was absolutely delicious. Ah, unfettered sleep, I hardly knew ye.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

On a roll

With work, that is. Spent the day (after yoga and meeting with the guy about the thing) testing my registration page over and over, eliminating many annoying bugs. I am now the master of handling "exceptions", as in, you can't get the discounted international rate if you live in the US, can't sign up for the competitor rate and then not sign up for a contest, can't register for both Amateur and Pro divisions, the list is endless. But I think I have it pretty much licked. I know if there are still problems once it goes live on Tues night I can probably fix them myself. I do have quite a logic-based, mechanical mind when I apply myself. So, done, and done. Also did a few hours of video editing/archiving and worked on the website more, as in loading up some photo galleries. I'm on a roll, people. This is what I would call "virtual nesting".

The meeting with the guy about the place went well today...but after discussing it with a couple of people, I think I'm going to pass. Mainly, I just don't see a way to make it actually work. And as a friend pointed out, it doesn't matter if you don't technically lose money; being involved in something that isn't successful is a real drag. I ran a weekly venue about ten years ago and over the course of nine months watched it die a slow death, and it was one of the most miserable experiences of my life. The thought of going through that again makes me cringe. I don't think there's an audience for what we want to do. It's basically us trying to cannibalize the tiny group of people who go out dancing regularly, and already there's too many places to go and not enough people. So, the heck with it. I will probably see him tomorrow and will tell him then that I'm out.

I am going to hustle to get my promo video done this weekend, then launch registration at midnight Tuesday, then things will be real quiet on the work front for a while. Personally I'm quite looking forward to getting back to baby stuff!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Another day in LA

So today I steeled myself for the midwife appointment, not sure what to expect with all this GD stuff.  Honestly, it was such a gorgeous day here in LA it was hard to be unhappy about anything – and I promised myself I would not have a freak out no matter what happened.  This is a new midwife, the third one I’ve seen since I’ve been at Kaiser.  Part of me thinks that’s kind of weird, but part of me doesn’t mind, either – it’s best to get familiar with as many faces there as possible, since who knows who will be on call when I go into labor?  Anyway, the first thing this lady mentioned was my failed 1 hour test, so I busted out my log of blood sugar readings and told her I’d be testing at home from now on and don’t want to do the 3 hour torture test.  She said this was fine, since people who fail the 3 hour end up home testing usually anyway, so might as well start now.  She also gave me some tips on how/when to eat and what the most important readings are.  Still not 100% clear on all of this, but I’m glad to hear I can just sort of keep doing what I’m doing and should be fine.  Everything else looked good – good fluid levels, baby head down, growing/moving at the right rate, etc.  I am so paranoid some f-d up thing is going to happen at the last minute after things going so well for so long, it’s hard to just relax, even though I only have eight weeks to go.  So every time I go in there and everything looks good I just thank my lucky stars.  And I don’t have to go again for two weeks, woo hoo!

Last night I busted my tail preparing for my book club.  I don’t know why every time I entertain I think it’s a good idea to not clean for weeks and run all the food down in the refrigerator – I kicked myself as soon as I got up yesterday when I realized I had to scrub the entire house from top to bottom, go grocery shopping, and cook, all in just a few hours.  I also set myself up for potential disaster in making a brand new, complicated recipe – vegetarian moussaka.  It was by far one of the most complicated things I’ve ever made, and took a straight three hours to assemble.  The good news is, it was delicious.  I wish it were simpler; I’d make it more often.  It would be great for me now since it’s 100% vegetables, no pasta or carbs at all, and protein from the hollandaise sauce you pour over it.  But boy is it a pain in the butt!  Maybe if I’m feeling super ambitious towards the end I’ll make one & freeze it for after the baby comes…but I doubt it.

I’ve spent the last couple of days in web design/computer programming hell.  Been testing my registration page and after hours finally worked out all the bugs, and spent all day today after my appointment redesigning my website for the new event year and then transferring the design changes to the registration page.  I think it looks pretty great, personally.  There are still things I don’t like about my web page, but is it better than relying on someone else to do it for me?  Absolutely.  I’ll suffer through a little amateurish design any day to not have to deal with flaky other people.

I’ve been approached out of the blue to start a monthly swing venue.  This guy is not one of my favorite people, but he is a heck of a promoter and seems to be quite successful.  He wants to open a venue that has three different dance styles going in three different rooms at a ballroom space, and I would be in charge of the Lindy stuff.  Which basically just means hiring DJs, and promoting.  It sounds like it could be a really good opportunity – he has a deal set up where we split any profits with the venue owners, so we don’t pay money up front, and they handle all the support staff (so I wouldn’t have to constantly try to get people to work the door for me, which I hate).  We’re going to tour the location tomorrow.  I don’t know what to make of it, really – part of me doesn’t think I’ll be able to get anyone to show up to a DJ’d dance on a Sunday night, especially when there’s a FREE club the very next night with live music that everyone goes to.  Why would people come to this, unless they’re of the crossover variety (people who enjoy different dance styles)?  I could see how that might be appealing to some people.  And I could run workshops for teachers I know, but would have to figure out how they get paid.  Anyway I figure it’s pretty much no risk…I just don’t want to be involved in something that’s going to end up sucking.  Also he wants to start in mid-March, which might be difficult for me, and April will, too, although there’s no saying I have to be present at the venue, I just have to set it up for someone to show up and DJ.  Suffice it to say I’m interested in at least considering it.  If I even make only $100 a month on it, that’ll help pay the baby’s health care premiums!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Almost 31 weeks

I just had an experimental GD breakfast – oatmeal with cinnamon and blueberries and strawberries.  I missed the maple syrup, but it was ok.  I could live with this for two months.  I am curious to see if the carbs alone and/or fruit will push my numbers over the edge in an hour, or if I’ll be fine.  I’m pretty surprised that I had a nice low 80 for my fasting number this morning despite having not eaten particularly well last night (had a bit of a peanut butter and honey frenzy – another reason why peanut butter is normally not allowed in this house).  It’s all a puzzle.  And you know what’s funny?  I may very well go to the ob Thursday and they won’t even mention my 1 hour test results, after I’ve been through all this agide about it.  Oh well.  It’s been interesting anyway (especially now that I learned some tricks on how to make the testing less painful on my fingers, which really work).

I have been doing my daily “kick counts” with the help of a handy downloaded IPhone app.  I find I tend to get ten movements in about five minutes.  I think this is a terrific tool – a way to see early if your baby’s in distress and get help before it’s too late (the Doppler won’t help with this, since by the time the heartbeat’s gone, it’s gone). 

It’s a cold, rainy day here in LA, and I found myself looking out the window a couple of minutes ago and wondering what the weather would be like when my son is born.  Then I thought, “um, probably a lot like this, since it’s only two months from now.”  It was the first time it really hit me – it’s not that far off.  So not far off that it will still be cold and rainy, and everything will pretty much be the same, by the time he gets here.  I am excited to get my parenting classes and hospital tour on, since I still have a lot of questions.  I think just having some basic things sorted out – where to park when I go to the hospital, what the rooms look like, how to diaper, when to feed – will make me feel a lot better. 

I am looking for a very basic baby book – mainly answering the question of “when to get professional help” when your kid is sick, and what to look for, being as I’m entirely ignorant of these things because of my background – and am having a hard time finding one that doesn’t seem to be all agenda-y and weird.  I read the reviews on Amazon and it’s always the same thing – the crunchy, babywearing, co-sleeping, natural birth types vs. the old school CIO people.   

And then everyone always back pedals and says whatever you’ve heard about their method is too extreme and it’s really like this, etc etc etc.  It’s all very confusing and overwhelming, so it doesn’t surprise me that many of the mothers I’ve talked to about books and/or read about online have decided to chuck all instructions and go by their instincts.  I may become one of these.  However I do need a good medical book because I have no instincts in that area (having never had any medication, pain relief, or doctor visits as a kid).  Baby 411 seems somewhat promising.  We shall see.

I think I’ve made a decision about my kitchen facelift.  I don’t feel comfortable putting myself in debt to do this, yet my kitchen does need some serious help since I haven’t touched it since 2001.  I think what I’m going to do is forego the new sink and countertop and instead just freshen up the paint (ie, pay someone to freshen up the paint).  I thought I could just buy new laminate panels to cover the old countertop, but apparently it doesn’t really work like that; I would have to cut a brand new countertop, and I don’t even know how much that would cost.  Plus a decent sink would be several hundred $$.  So, the heck with it.  I think a good compromise would be fresh new paint on the walls, ceiling and cabinets inside out, and that should hold me for a good long time.  It will also take less time and be less intrusive.  So I’ll call up my painter guy and see if he can get this done before my sister gets here for my shower.  Hopefully it will only run a few hundred $$.  Honestly right now I don’t even have that level of money, but I feel better going into debt that amount than a couple thousand.  I am absolutely determined to get my Business Line of Credit paid down completely within a month or so after the baby arrives so I then have money for sitters.  I only owe $4000 on it and I know I can do it!

Is it better to have loved and lost...?

Today I went to see the widow of the old time jitterbug who passed away a couple of weeks ago. She was of course still very distraught. At one point during our visit a neighbor came by and the widow confided in the neighbor that she wishes she could die herself. I wasn't shocked by this; I think it's normal. They were married 62 years; her entire adult life revolved around this man. And they never had kids because he was 20 years older and had had a family and a vasectomy already. But seeing the tremendous pain this woman is in at the loss of her husband, it definitely made me wonder - is it better to have loved and lost than never loved at all?

She said she wished us kids could have what she and her husband had for so many years. The three of us that were single looked at each other and said, "mmmyeah, that's not likely." I know in some cases people - especially women - flourish when their long-term spouse passes away. I don't really see that happening for this lady, though. They were so enmeshed, such a unit. She lived entirely for him. Is this a bad thing? I don't think so, but it does make you wonder what happens when the man is gone in this scenario. She could go on another 20+ years. Is she now robbed of all happiness, all pleasure, because he's gone? Will she be able to forge a new life without him?

Now here I am, one who has assumed and accepted the risks of having a baby on my own. Any number if heartbreaking situations could arise from this - from as extreme as his dying to as routine as he and I just never bonding and his not wanting to be in my life once he's grown. But I walked into this fully knowing the risks, just as everyone who takes the vow "'till death do us part" knows that the best case scenario is that you won't ever break up but one of you will die, leaving the other heartbroken. At least children are more likely to outlive you. But there are no guarantees.

Don't know what all this means really; I just see this intensely mourning older woman who's lived a completely opposite life from mine, and I just want to say something to make it all better, to make her not sad anymore. But she needs to be sad and we need to just be there and hold her hand and listen. I can do that.

Saturday, January 21, 2012


Since I am such a fan of lists, I thought now would be a good time for a little almost-eight months’ assessment of pregnancy thus far.  There have been high points and low points.  Unfortunately I think in the next two months I will be able to add a lot more low points.  But for now, here they are for weeks 1-30:

Best (in no particular order):

Hearing/seeing/feeling the baby.  For sure this is the coolest aspect of pregnancy.  I can’t say it makes things “more real” since they are “unreal” to begin with, but listening to the heartbeat/feeling the movements/staring at ultrasound pictures (especially the super 4D pics) have provided me hours of entertainment and joy.

Friendships changing in a positive way.  You never know when some life change will happen to draw people to you that were distant before, or bring a special connection that never existed before.  It’s been fascinating to see the people who have come out of the woodwork to wish me well or express an interest in being an ongoing part of the baby’s life.  As noted on this blog before, I always assume nobody gives a crap about anybody but themselves, but this whole experience has proven me wrong on this account many times.

Cute belly!  I personally love watching my body change and enjoy dressing for my new belly.  Although I’ve stressed about the weight because my health care practitioners have made me stress about it, I don’t look at myself and think “fat” or wish I “had my old body back” or any of that.  I mean, I’m old, dammit.  My body would pretty much be on a downward spiral from now on anyway.  Who really cares about stretch marks and minor weight gain…?  Ain’t nobody looking at my naked body any time soon!  If I decide I want to be super skinny and fit after the baby’s here I know I can do that, with much effort.  It’s just a choice I can either make or not make.  For now I’m just enjoying watching nature do what it’s supposed to do.

Solving that problem of “what if I never have a kid?”  Although as noted becoming a single mother by choice by far does not solve all your problems, it does solve one problem – the problem of not having a kid.  Even at the best of times in the past this question always haunted me – how to “pull this off” in time, especially with the dating pool available to me pretty much akin to the cast of “Lockup: Raw”.  So even though I’m sure single parenthood will be fraught with all sort of issues and concerns, at least this is one I never have to think about again.

Change.  Part of me kind of hates change, and part of me loves it, too.  Change is so necessary from even a brain function point of view – it’s important to always be learning new things and be made to do things in new ways so you don’t just shut down and go on auto pilot.  I love that now my life will be constant change, because the kid will always be changing, and I will be challenged to learn about new things and have new experiences (whereas when you’re alone you tend to just do the same things over and over because it’s comfortable).

Worst (in no particular order):

Nausea.  I think that’s all I need to say about that.

Fears.  Having things to be legitimately afraid of because they are now in the realm of things that may happen to you – miscarriage, abnormalities with the baby, complications, illnesses, etc – sucks, especially when you’re anxious to begin with.  It sure is an exciting new challenge to learn how to keep your anxiety under control, though, I’ll give it that.

Constant medical stuff.  I hate having to go to the hospital this often and be poked and prodded so much.  I feel like I frickin’ live there, and I’m having a normal pregnancy without issues.  It will be great when we can both just go in for yearly checkups and that’s it.

Judgment/unsolicited advice.  According to the gals on the WTE March 2012 board, I’ve had it pretty easy in this department so far, maybe because I’m the kind of person that just doesn’t invite intrusions in general (I still have that “get the f away from me” New York thing going on).  But I have to admit when the fifth person e-mails you to tell you everything that’s wrong about your baby registry, even though they took time out of their day to try to be helpful, it does get kind of annoying.  Plus I’m also a little fed up with all the weird agendas and political stuff that swirls around pregnancy/childbirth/baby care.  Some of it I buy and some of it I flat out don’t.  Still it seems like there’s never a time in your life when you’re more intruded upon than when you’re a parent (or about to be a parent) and I have to say I don’t like it one bit.  Even as I say this I know once the baby’s here it’s only going to get worse.  Sigh.

I think that about sums it up.  Thus far, I have not had major hormonal issues (I mean, sure, I’ve had some emotional/irrational moments, but I had those before, so I can hardly blame them entirely on the pregnancy), no major physical issues (although we’ll see what happens with this whole GD thing), I feel good and positive, I don’t long for things to “get back to…” anything (although the day I can hang out in my hot tub again is going to be awesome), I don’t regret my decision, I don’t wish I were doing this with a partner (although ask me that in a few months…I’m sure there will come a time when I will wish like the dickens someone were here to take the baby so I can get a freakin’ break for five minutes).  I don’t have “pregnancy brain” – I am perfectly capable of focusing on business or anything else I have to do (although looking at vintage crochet baby outfits on Etsy for hours would sure be a lot more fun than renewing a business tax license).  I don’t know if all of these things will change in the next two months.  They very well might.  But my hope is despite probably getting a lot more uncomfortable/incapacitated towards the end that at least I still have my mind.  That’s not too much to ask, is it?

Friday, January 20, 2012

G-D dieting

So even though nobody has officially told me I have gestational diabetes, I have decided to just act as though I do and change my habits a bit. I looked up some GD menus online and I think I can live with it - more protein for breakfast, check; less carbs & sugars in general, check. May help stave off massive weight gain, too, which is definitely a good thing. So I went shopping today and bought more fruits and vegetables, salad fixings, peanut butter, cottage cheese and yogurt.

I'll tell you one thing, though - I'm going to a birthday party tomorrow and I'm having pizza and cake and nobody can stop me. Also I am having cake at my shower.

I'm trying to take all of this in stride but I'll be blatantly honest - I'm a little pissed off. I'm surrounded by women who treat (ed) their pregnancies like an eating free-for-all, put on a ton if weight, and never had to deal with this. Here I am with my freakin' brown rice and vegetables and plain yogurt and I'm the one who develops diabetes (supposedly). I hate exercise, I hate dieting, I hate depriving myself. I'm so good 90% of the time - no fast food, no processed food, no soda, no candy. And yet the gals on my March 2012 board go on all day about how they've eaten nothing but McDonald's for months. And I'm the one who has to restrict my diet even more, be even more careful, make more time to get out and move my body when all I want to do is relax.

So for me this is not the Gestational Diabetes diet, it's the God Damned diet. If the condition goes away after giving birth, the first thing I'm going to do is stick two Twix bars up my nose.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

My fingers hurt

So just a quick update on those blood glucose numbers. After that scary 222 number, the next hour dropped to the 160s, and the hour after that into the 90s. Then I had my standard lunch of black bean tacos and was delighted to see my one hour post lunch number was only 115. An hour later it was in the 120s. What this all means, I won't know until I speak to a professional. Is it normal that my blood sugar would spike so much after a sugary breakfast but then be good the rest of the day? Does that one bad number alone mean I need to worry, as in, I didn't react well to something sugary? Or does my reaction to normal food the rest of the day mean I'm ok? Do I just need to steer clear of high sugar/carb meals for the next ten weeks? What does it all mean???

I may or may not do another all day testing extravaganza tomorrow, having eggs for breakfast instead, just to see if I react any differently. Or I may give my poor bruised finger tips a break. I'll see how I feel in the morning. I kind of want to get it over with but kind of want my fingers to heal first too.

I broke down and called the gal who's hosting my shower to ask if moving it to Saturday would be ok for her, and she said sure. So I put the word out that this is what I'd like to do. I feel MUCH better about this. As she pointed out, having a celebration of bringing a new life into the world immediately followed by a sad memorial is just too jarring in one day. I'm just so glad that she, and everyone else, were willing to be flexible. Takes a lot of pressure off me, for sure.

Spent several hours tonight wrestling with the completely non-intuitive, confusing program to design my online registration page. It's almost there now - I even ran a test and much to my delight it appears to actually work. I just have to find the guy who designed the program on G chat and pick his brain about a few small details and hopefully it'll be ready to go live in two weeks. Then I edit my promo and the big jobs are behind me and I can again focus on getting ready for the baby. Whew!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


I had another Tums-free night and got a decent night’s sleep (apart from more event-related nightmares) so I decided to resume testing today.  My fasting number was 98 – three points higher than they’d like.  Then I had a some grapenuts with a little maple syrup and a banana and my prenatal and took my blood an hour later.  Much to my horror the number was a whopping 222!!!  Holy crap!  This definitely puts me in the diabetic range, not even pre-diabetic.  Wow.  I will test again in about a half hour, and again an hour after that.  But right now it’s not looking good at all.

Tomorrow (if no Tums during the night) I’ll do a little experiment and eat a very low-carb, low-sugar diet and see how different my numbers are.  If it’s just a question of eggs for breakfast instead of cereal to get my numbers down, then so be it.  But I have to say I’m pretty scared by that 222 number.  That’s, like, really bad.  It’s so irritating because I read all these web sites and have zero symptoms or risk factors.  I mean, if you’re diabetic, wouldn’t you know it?  I don’t feel weak, I don’t feel foggy headed, I’m not tired (unless I don’t sleep), I feel totally normal in every way.  As of today (just shy of 30 weeks, tomorrow) I’m only at 22 pounds weight gain.  But I guess none of this crap matters.  It’s just how your body reacts to hormones and sugars.  I had a rotten experience with morning sickness which a lot of people don’t have, and this had nothing to do with anything except my body’s way of handling things.  So, good times. 

After thinking about the whole shower vs. memorial service thing, at the moment I am more motivated to move it to the day before than try to make the two events work on the same day.  It sucks because already there’s a whole slew of people who can’t make it the day before, but it’s mostly guys who I’m sure would rather not be there anyway (I felt obligated to invite spouses).  The very idea of everyone coming to my shower late, then sitting there tapping their toes and checking their watches and then slipping out early so they can make the long drive down to the memorial just totally bums me out.  It’s going to ruin the whole day for me, honestly.  And I hate to sound like one of these whiny, entitled shower-having people, but really, this is the one shower I’ll ever get, and this memorial being on the same day is going to ruin the whole thing.  I’ll be on edge, and everyone will short change my shower to spend the bulk of the time at the memorial, which really is far more important.  This particular man’s memorial is just about the one single thing that could cause this kind of conflict, because everyone that attends my shower will want to go to the memorial and would not miss it for anything.  My shower, on the other hand, can be missed, or at least glossed over.  Sigh.  Trying to keep some perspective at the moment that it’s just a frickin’ baby shower, for cry-eye.  But it is bumming me out big time.  So hopefully we’ll come up with a workable solution. 

In other news I got just about all of my business tax stuff done, which feels fantastic.  Oh, don’t get me wrong, I do have to still do my own taxes which is a week-long extravaganza, but at least I filed my three business license renewals, my quarterly sales tax (for $9, don’t know why I even bother for how little I sell these days), sent out about 30 1099s, filed three 1096 forms, and did the taxes for the band so I can get my K-1 form for my own taxes.  Having this all done is a huge weight off of me.  And God bless the person who out of nowhere ordered $250 worth of my old DVDs last night.  This, plus my friend still selling my vintage clothes on her Etsy store and paying me for my 1930’s club set, will make it so that I just might be able to make my mortgage for February.  Sometimes it’s the little things.