Monthly Archives: October 2008

Marriage = <3 + <3

WritetoMarry

If you live in CA or FL, we hope you’re all ready to vote NO on those awful propositions against same sex marriage. And since pictures are worth a thousand words, we leave you with some images from our wedding ceremony 2.5 years ago. Though it wasn’t legal in secular law, our Rabbi closed the ceremony by saying “In spite of the laws of this state, I now pronounce you married.”

Synogogue

Midnight rose bouquets

Under the chuppah

Rings

Getting pictures taken outside

Guest Table

Our table

First dance

Cake

Sharing a cake kiss

Being goofy

Moving right along

Fairly uneventful OB appointment this afternoon, which is good!  I have gained another 3/4 lb. (I’m betting it was the Chip*tle I had for lunch) and we heard the nice strong heartbeat right away with the doppler.  The biggest excitement is that my Rh blood factor came back as A-.  This was a very big surprise as both my parents and my sister are A+ and we have always assumed that I was as well.  Our donor is A+ so that means I will have to get a rhogam shot at 28 weeks so that if the baby’s blood type is + my body doesn’t attack the baby.  Great news for a needlephobe, let me tell you!

In other news, the OB cleared us to push my next routine appointment out to 5 weeks so that we can take care of the anatomy scan at the same visit.  We’ve scheduled it for December 4.  I’ll be at 20w1d but if Cupcake isn’t cooperating, they will simply do another scan at the follow up visit a month later.  We are not having the quad scan or any of the other genetic screening blood tests that are offered.

In other news, I found the perfect pair of maternity pants on the clearance rack at a schmacy boutique this weekend.  They are black cotton twill, slightly dressy, machine washable, fit under the belly, and have this brilliant elastic in the back of the waistband.  The elastic has a buttonhole every 2 inches or so.  On the inside at the left hip it can be pulled tight or loosened up and then secured by a button sewn to the inside seam.  I expect I’ll be able to wear them throughout my pregnancy.  If they’d had another pair I’d have bought 2!

14th week

So we’re officially in the second trimester, no matter how the sources out there look at it. We would like to never, ever repeat the first trimester…ever. And yes, this means our goal is and has always been one child.

Emotionally-speaking, the first trimester has been filled with as many moments of worry and anxiety as excitement. I don’t envy anyone going through it, especially those early few weeks. And we send our love and support to those out there whom we know are experiencing this right now.

Our next OB appointment is a regular monthly check-up on Monday. We’re guessing weight, urine sample, maybe a measurement and some chatting. Anything else we should be aware of?

We just booked a vacation to South Beach in late December. We’re calling it our “Conception Moon” after a short conversation in which we decided a “Baby Moon” would be after the baby is born, as a Honeymoon happens after the marriage has taken place. The Baby Moon may take place with or without baby in tow when it happens, but that’s a long way off and so now we’re looking forward to our respite from the bitter cold when we escape to the beach this winter.

I see Nutella’s tummy growing slightly more and more. She made a deal with me to call me wherever she is (if I’m not with her) when she feels the baby move. I picture our future child and am sometimes overcome with emotion and a sort of pride I can already feel. I am equally picturing a boy or a girl at this point…trying harder to imagine a boy so that if it’s a girl, it’ll be an even happier surprise. We already have names picked out…we have for a long time…but it’s fun to keep tossing others back and forth, especially when they’re really wacky.

They say you can quit worrying so much in the second trimester, so we’re starting to do that and live more in the joy. Shopping will have to wait a while longer though, even if we do find ourselves eyeing the baby sections of stores. We’ve begun talking more about the “transform second bedroom to nursery” plan, but are going to need to do more research before putting it into action. The room is already a fun, cool, bright green so we’re thinking maybe a frog theme. We’re just not sure when to take the proverbial leap to say ok, let’s buy this…but that time will come soon enough and the excitement is building!

Belly

Behold the first series of belly shots.  Weeks 11-13.  Things are starting to change there.  The belly is very firm.  When pressed from the outside it feels like you are pressing on a very well inflated beach ball.  Bought my first maternity jeans over the weekend.  I’ve decided that for the moment I hate the belly band and anything else that has to be tight over my belly.  I much prefer things that sit below it.  

In other news, I really didn’t appreciate the surprise puke on Monday morning just before I left the house for work.  In about 10 seconds, I went from feeling totally fine to crouching on the kitchen floor with a glass bowl in hand. Otherwise, I’ve been feeling better these days.

Thanks for all of your great comments on our last post!

Say hi, baby!

We had our appointment for the nuchal translucency scan this morning…and well into the afternoon. When we got there, Nutella spent the first 20 minutes filling out forms. Then we waited an hour to be seen by a genetic counselor. The counselor was very nice and personable…she sat with the both of us for about 15 minutes discussing the nuchal scan, Nutella and the donor’s backgrounds, and information about chromosomal abnormalities, which we are not at very high risk for. At age 32, the risk of having a baby with Downs is 1 in 637. By the end of our scan, we were told it was reduced to 1 in 900 because of how things measured. She did say that also having the blood test would greatly increase the probability of catching anything, but we decided that unless the nuchal scan results were borderline, we would skip it. It’s only a finger prick, but we still thought it would be unnecessary if everything looked ok. She was actually surprised we were having any testing done at all, considering Nutella’s age and background. We thought this scan was recommended for most pregnant women though, being so non-invasive.

So after the chat, we again waited another half hour, at which point Nutella was getting hungry and as we know, it is never a good idea to deprive pregnant women of food. Finally, an ultrasound tech took us into the room for the ultrasound…our first abdominal one. Cupcake is beautiful. S/he was moving around a lot at first…showing us both arms, both legs, opening and closing a fist, and even opening and closing his/her mouth. We were delighted. The nuchal fold measured 2.1mm (they say under 3.0mm is good). The heartbeat was measuring 153bpm. The crown-rump length was 7.1cm. We even measured ahead by 2 days (13 weeks 3 days).

A doctor came into the room shortly after to have a look. He was a very pleasant guy and made some chit chat before doing the ultrasound. He was also pleased with what he saw, and offered us a look using the new 4D technology. We didn’t expect that at all and were very excited. Our baby looks like a baby using that technology, and a cute little alien without it.

Without any further ado, let us present Cupcake:

Cupcake's Profile

Hi, everyone!
Cupcake Waving

And the 4D scan picture
Cupcake 4D

1st Trimester Report Card for Pregnancy Symptoms

I thought this idea was so cute when Vee and Jay did it.  Depending on who you ask, my 2nd trimester starts tomorrow or next week, so I figure I’m ok to post this now.  As with normal U.S. grading standards, an A score is the best and an F score is the worst. In this case, an F probably sent me into fits of crying at some point.

Exhaustion: D
Nausea/Vomiting: F
Heartburn: F
Backache: C
Constipation: C
Weight Gain: A (5 lbs!)
Food Aversions: B (only eggs, green veggies, sometimes chicken)
Food Cravings: A (only chinese noodles)
Heightened Sense of Smell: B
Emotions: A

Notes:  Nutella did exceptionally well with the emotional aspects of the 1st trimester.  She was moderately tired but managed to complete most of her daily activities in a normal manner.  Exceptions were meal preparation and household cleaning.  Liberal indulgence in naps and early bedtimes assisted with this.  Physically, Nutella struggled with excessive heartburn and nausea, culminating in forced hospital medical care.  We would like to see improvement in this area.

As the supporting partner, Strawberry excelled this trimester.  She was emotionally and physically supportive and even picked up the dropped tasks that Nutella neglected, even when they went beyond her  comfort zone.  For this she receives top marks.  Extra credit was earned by her generous belly worship and brave spider slaying and cricket capture/release activities.  Keep up the good work!

We’re Coming Out

In honor of National Coming Out day tomorrow, Nutella and I are going to take a little “coming out/being out” survey I found…

Strawberry:
Are you open with your sexuality? I usually tell people once we’ve gotten to know each other a little better. I don’t normally share much of my life with strangers and I definitely don’t tell everyone I meet, but I don’t take pains to hide it either. I mean, I have a wedding picture of my wife and I out on my desk at work, and a rainbow flag on my car.
Who was the 1st person you told that you’re a lesbian?I first told my sister that I might be bisexual when I was 15 (not wanting to give up hope on ending up with a man). She told me it was just a phase. The first friend I told that I was gay was one of my best friends in high school. I hinted at it to her over a 4-hour long phone conversation late at night until she finally guessed. She thought it was the coolest thing. lol
Overall, how difficult was it to come out? My fears were much worse than the reality, so I had a pretty hard time of it. There were a couple years in high school where it really consumed me. But once all was said and done, it turned out not to be so bad.
Do you own anything with the Gay Rainbow on it? I have the sticker on my car, and we have a little rainbow flag somewhere in the house.
Do you consider yourself Butch, Androgynous, or Femme?I look femme but feel more andro. Still, I’m pretty girly overall.
What type of females are you most attracted to?I’m attracted to other feminine women, although I have been attracted to the occasional hot butch in the past. lol.
What famous lesbian is your favorite? This is cliche, but Ellen, because I was coming out at the same time she was on her show and that helped me an awful lot.
What is your favorite lesbian movie? Girl Play.
Do you have any Pride tattoos? Actually, both Nutella and I have the same rainbow star tattoo, but in different places (mine’s on my left shoulder).
How do you feel about Gays/Lesbians having children? Uh, very good? lol. I think it’s a bigger and more thoughtful decision for us since we can’t have “accidents” and I think studies have shown our children to be more well-adjusted and open-minded overall.
If it were legal, would you marry another woman? We didn’t care about the legality of it and are already married. But when it becomes legal in our state, we’ll sign the papers.
Have you ever attended a Gay Pride Festival? Lots!
Do you have more Gay/Lesbian/Bi friends than you do Straight friends? Actually, right now I think I do. The scales tipped a couple years ago.
Have you ever personally dealt with homophobia? I deal with the effects of it everyday, but other than random assholes spewing hate at some events I’ve been to, I haven’t personally dealt with it in my face much.
Did anyone stop having contact with you after you came out of the closet? Luckily, no.
Do you believe you were born a lesbian? Absolutely.
Are you proud? Very!

Nutella:
Are you open with your sexuality? Very.  Whenever I start what I anticipate to be a long term relationship, be it personal or professional, I always try to slip in a reference to it fairly early on in the game.  I am a firm believer in the “personal is political, and the political is personal” way of life.  Once that door is open, I am very very up-front about both my personal life and about gay specific issues in general, if asked.
Who was the 1st person you told that you’re a lesbian?  Some random other actress in a play that I was in when I was 17.  She was trying to set me up on a date with her brother.
Overall, how difficult was it to come out?  Not nearly as difficult for me as for many others. The hardest was my best friend in High School. I was wary about how she’d react, since she was pretty mean to the only other out lesbian in our school.  With my parents, I never anticipated any negative reaction, so it was more an issue of timing.  It’s not exactly an easy conversation to start.
Do you own anything with the Gay Rainbow on it?  Sticker on my car, earrings, hair clips, ribbons, feather fan.  I like rainbows.
Do you consider yourself Butch, Androgynous, or Femme?  Femme.  I’m pretty girly and into dresses, lingerie, shoes, sparkly jewlery, and occasionally make-up and hair.  But I am also totally confortable hiking in the woods, building stuff, and changing a tire.
What type of females are you most attracted to?  Redheads.  Seriously,  I don’t have a physical “type.”
What famous lesbian is your favorite?  Is it bad that I can’t really think of anyone?  There’s a very well known professional actress locally that I am totally in awe of.  I’m such a fan girl for her.
What is your favorite lesbian movie? They all suck.  Ok, not ALL of them, but I don’t really LOVE any of the ones that I’ve seen.  If I had to pick I think I’d say Nina’s Heavenly Delights.
Do you have any Pride tattoos? Strawberry and I have matching rainbow disco stars.  Mine is on my outer right calf.
How do you feel about Gays/Lesbians having children?  Really great.
If it were legal, would you marry another woman? No, I’d still marry Strawberry.  Oh wait, you mean would I marry a woman?  Then I guess the answer is yes.  I’d make us legal.
Have you ever attended a Gay Pride Festival? Too many to count.
Do you have more Gay/Lesbian/Bi friends than you do Straight friends? Yes, though most of them are also neighbors.  I love where we live.
Have you ever personally dealt with homophobia? I went to college to study musical theatre.  95% of the male students and faculty were gay.  I was one of 3 lesbians, faculty and students, in the entire school.  I did NOT play the politics of the school the way that the powers in charge wanted them played.  I asked questions and I fought hard for myself.  I was asked not to return after my sophomore year.  I do not know if my sexuality had anything to do with their decision to want to get rid of me, but the whole experience has always felt as though it had many things wrong with it and that would not surprise me.
Did anyone stop having contact with you after you came out of the closet? No.
Do you believe you were born a lesbian? I believe that I was born with the genetic material that would cause me to be homosexual upon sexual maturity.
Are you proud?  You bet!

Overheard in the ER

On the other side of the curtain is an elderly couple.  The man is unable to pee so they are going to give him a catheter.  Their Dr. is visibly pregnant.  After she leaves to get the catheter this conversation takes place:

Woman: I’m glad I don’t have to do THAT anymore!

Man: What?

Woman: Pregnancy.  I don’t envy anyone who’s going through that.

We seriously could not stop giggling silently at this exchange.  They had arrived after my intake interview so they had no way of knowing that there was a sick pregnant lady just on the other side of the curtain.

Thank you for all of your good wishes about yesterday’s ordeal. Today I am feeling somewhat better.  No more nausea thanks to the Zofran.  On a very limited diet which is boring, but I’m sticking to it.  Managed to make it into work for a few hours and got to see my out of town boss, which was very good.  I also told my team about my pregnancy and got congratulations all around.

Drip, drip, drip….

Let me start by saying that we have no reason to believe that there is anything wrong with Cupcake. However, we have no real way of knowing until our next scan on 10/16.

  The last few days have not been fun. I had a pretty good Saturday with very little in the way of nausea or heartburn. My energy was almost back to pre-pregnancy levels. We went to a wedding for friends and a birthday party for another friend so I was thrilled to be feeling the best I’d felt in weeks.
  Then came Sunday. I woke up feeling pretty exhausted and sick. My day was spent mostly on the couch fighting the urge to puke. At 7pm it was time for my 2nd daily dose of the Zantac. It was a struggle to get the 1st pill down, and a minute later I was hugging the toilet and losing the contents of my stomach. I didn’t try to take the 2nd one. By 9pm, I was passed out in bed.
  At 7am on Monday, I tried to take a Zantac again. An even more violent reaction than the night before. I gave up on going to work, managed to eat a few bites of yogurt, and went back to bed. Throughout the day, I tried to stay hydrated and fed with a saltine every hour or so. Mostly sleeping, I fought the nausea off until 5pm. And then it got worse. I couldn’t keep ANYTHING down. Not a single bite of dry toast, not a single sip of water or Pedialyte. This kept on through the night. After 3am, I gave up trying to keep myself hydrated.
  We had called the after-hours answering service for my OB at 7pm and again at 11pm, but no one ever called us back. At 7:30, with me feeling completely worn out and exhausted and unable to keep anything down, we called again. This time, someone finally called us back. They were very emphatic. Go to the emergency room for IV fluids.
  I called out of work again (missing my out-of-town boss and a very big meeting and telling him over the phone that I’m pregnant. Not at all how I had planned to tell him). Strawberry called out of work. We loaded me into the car, puke bucket in hand and drove to the ER.
  Ok, so I have to now put in a good word about the ER. We arrived at 9am and were through the doors to a room by 9:30. Not at all the horror stories of 4 hour waits in the waiting room with screaming children.
  We were placed in a semi-private curtained room with no one on the other side of the curtain. A nurse took my stats. A 4th year med student asked me a bunch of questions and confirmed what we had expected- that they were going to give me an IV drip of saline to re-hydrate me and also an IV dose of Zofran for the nausea. Oh yeah, and take a bunch of blood to run tests to rule out any more serious causes of my illness. Here’s the part where I remind you I hate needles. I was a big baby. I sobbed and sniffled as they took blood and left a line in for the IV. I was unable to look at or use that arm for the rest of the stay.
A doctor came in and did a brief exam before confirming the course of treatment. Before starting the IV, they asked for a urine sample. As dehydrated as I was and with one arm unusable, that was a challenge, but I managed.
  Then came the IV. A huge bag of saline left to drip over the course of an hour and an in-line injection of the Zofran. The nausea subsided fairly quickly. And we were left to wait.
  After the hour, the Dr. and his student returned. Asked how I was feeling, seemed pleased with my improved appearence and said that all my blood work had come back fine. Assured me that I’d get a perscription for Zofran to fill at my pharmacy. Gave me a cup of ice water and a cup of apple juice to sip at will, then departed. The nurse returned. My saline bag was still 3/4 full, and dripping too slowly. No wonder I didn’t feel great yet! She had to re-tape my IV to get the fluid flowing properly. We knew this meant another hour wait. Before she left, she hooked my other arm up to an automatic blood pressure cuff, set at 30 minute intervals so that she could “keep an eye on me”. As you can well imagine, this left me pretty much imobile since I now had 1 arm in the cuff and the other on a drip. And the saline was COLD. My fingers were numb. I started to shiver. Strawberry wrapped me tightly in the sheet and a blanket she asked for. I was still freezing.
  An hour later, the drip was done and Strawberry went to get the nurse. She came in, removed the drip, and checked my blood pressure again. She wasn’t pleased with how low it was. I kept insisting how cold I was, but she’d have none of it. Said she needed to speak with the Dr. Another 30 minutes go by. At this point, I’m hydrated and no longer feeling the nausea. But I hadn’t eaten since a saltine cracker at 2pm the previous day. I’m HUNGRY. We wait. The machine takes my blood pressure twice more. It’s improving. The Dr. returns with my prescription and departs. Never says anything about my BP. We wait another 30 minutes.
  FINALLY, a different nurse comes in to remove my IV and give me my discharge papers. Instructions for what to eat over the next 2 days. I gratefully get dressed and we head out. We were there from 9am until 2.
After a quick stop at the pharmacy to fill my prescription, and stock up on clear fluid items for the 1st 24 hrs, we made it home and crashed hard. I would like to NEVER, EVER, EVER do that again, please?

Tossed to the side

I guess I always knew this time would come. I mean, there seems to always be one partner in the relationship who is going to look outwards…maybe even stray. I couldn’t keep playing dumb and think I would be able to fulfill all her needs. I must accept it, take a deep breath and be strong…

Breathe in, breathe out…here goes….