Friday, March 25, 2005

Perinatologist Fun

I just got back from my 32 week perinatologist appointment. They did a sonogram to check the placenta and the baby's growth. Everything looks perfectly normal! Every time I have an appointment I leave relieved, because there's always that chance that they will find something wrong. I've been so lucky that I've had no complications. He's measuring in the 40th percentile for growth; not too small, not too big, but juuuust right at 4 lbs 4 oz. This time we didn't get any pictures because the little guy was asleep and face down. His feet were crossed and he looked so cozy in there. At least one of us can sleep comfortably!

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Heavy Belly = Hurting Back

OK, time for some more pictures! Here's the latest of my growing front, at 32 weeks.

After seeing myself here I can tell why I'm having lower back problems! I really need to work on my posture. My poor back's not used to having to support all that weight.

And here are a few of the nursery. I still have a few finishing touches to work on but it's pretty much done. The theme is "Welcome to the jungle"! Eric wants to rig it so when you open the door the Guns n' Roses song plays, which I'm sure would be oh so soothing to a newborn. Actually, now that I think about it, to our child it just might be.

Friday, March 18, 2005

The Mother Myth

I'm sure every woman who plans to have children wonders what kind of mother she will be. Whether her kids come to her through an accidental pregnancy, planned pregnancy (in our case REALLY planned and expensive pregnancy), adoption, surrogacy, fostering, or any other way, there's no guarantee that she's not going to totally screw them up permanently by committing some horrible parental mistakes. My parents were wonderful and loving and did the very best they could, but guess what? I still have issues that stem from the way I was raised and from things that happened to me in my childhood. Nothing terrible or abusive, just stuff that can lead to issues. It seems that no matter how hard you try, you're bound to mess your children up in some way, usually the exact opposite way of how your parents messed you up.

I don't think I'm alone in this fear. I think it's impossible not to worry about it considering the expectations we're all up against. Mothers are supposed to be perfect, loving, nurturing, always have the right thing to say and have enough time and energy for each child no matter how busy her own life may be. This is why so many women hate Mothers Day. In the 1930's David O. McKay had this to say about his mother: "I cannot think of a womanly virtue that my mother did not possess...To her children, and all others who knew her well, she was beautiful and dignified. Though high-spirited she was even-tempered and self-possessed. Her dark brown eyes immediately expressed any rising emotion which, however, she always held under perfect control...In tenderness, watchful care, loving patience, loyalty to home and to right, she seemed to me in boyhood, and she seems to me now after these years, to have been supreme." (Improvement Era, May 1932, 391)

When this quote was read aloud in Relief Society, the remarks that were made were all along the lines of, "How wonderful that he had such a great mother and that he had so much respect for her." My reaction? It scares the crap out of me. Honestly: "high-spirited" AND "even-tempered"? "loving patience"? "always under perfect control"? From his description you can't imagine that she ever yelled at her kids, told her husband he was a jerk, or burned a frozen pizza because she was too engrossed in an episode of LOST (which, BTW, has replaced 24 as my favorite show on TV.)

I think we need to create a new image of motherhood, one that allows us to be human, to have some serious flaws, and even to occasionally make mistakes. Because really, wouldn't having a perfect mother screw you up even more?

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

U2 and 24

Someone sent me this article today. What U2 Is Looking For It's about the philosophical underpinnings of U2 and their journey from pessimistic Christianity to existential despair to relational redemption. Pretty interesting stuff. It just goes to show that there's a lot more depth in the world of pop music than it normally gets credit for. (Britney Spears kind of ruins it for everyone else.)

I've been so excited to read that The Anti-Drama Queen and Drama-Rama Sara are both into 24 now! I had always thought they would enjoy it, because I do, and they are at least as smart as I am. In my opinion, this is one of the best shows on TV, ever. Eric and I haven't missed a week since the beginning of season 3. I can't wait for my girls to live closer to me so we can have 24 parties and obsess together! Apparently they have both developed quite a penchant for Jack Bauer and his whispery growl. I'm more of a Tony admirer myself, but I'm sure we can overcome our differences.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Big and Loving It!

That's the title of the chapter about the 7th month of pregnancy in one of my books. Incidentally, this particular book was written by a man, so I don't know how the hell he knows what it feels like to be seven months pregnant, but whatever.

Personally, I love being pregnant, but I don't love being big. In fact, I really, really, really don't love it. In the last few weeks I've developed sciatica from the baby putting pressure on my sciatic nerve, which sucks big time. I can't walk two steps without getting shooting pains down my lower back, hips and the backs of my legs. Plus my belly is just plain heavy. I never imagined it would feel this cumbersome. I keep looking at pictures of myself a year ago (or better yet, five years ago!) and wistfully remembering wearing size 6 jeans and sleeping on my stomach. The other day I was grocery shopping, wearing sweatpants and no makeup and dragging myself around the store like a dying animal when a woman with a young child approached me. "You look great!" she said. "Really, you look fabulous!" I could have kissed her. I'm sure she saw me and thought, "Wow, that girl looks like she's about to pop right here in the cereal aisle, I should give her some encouragement." And you know what? I'll take it.

But I have to repeat: I really do love being pregnant! It has its discomforts for sure, but nothing is better than feeling my baby kick me and do somersaults and get hiccups. It's absolutely the coolest thing I've ever experienced. So if I have to have the fatness and the sciatica and the fatigue, that's totally fine with me.

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