June 11, 2009

Week 18 - Sonogram Today

Today, later this afternoon, we'll get a sonogram that will hopefully reveal the health and sex of our baby. When I was pregnant with Lucian during this part of the pregnancy, he was not willing to let us know he was a little boy for the 18 week sonogram. So, although I'm extremely excited to try to find out what the baby is, I won't be shocked if it decides to be shy. I'll just be agitated and hope we get another sonogram so we can find out later. I have little patience when it comes to this. I'm just too curious. It's not that I hate surprises — I like surprises if anyone can manage to pull them off — but I'm very, very nosey by nature so it usually doesn't work out.


One of the things I know they are going to be watching for is the baby's size. Lucian was a very large baby. If this baby is growing large quickly, it's going to lessen my chances for attempting a VBAC because my OB doesn't think my pelvic size can pass a large baby. Lucian got stuck and she thinks that may have been the cause. Part of the problem was complicated with Gestational Diabetes. I'm not sure when I have to take another glucose test, but I bet it's coming up soon. I'm not looking forward to it. I'm skeptical that I might have it because some of the symptoms include constant thirst and frequent urination — which I have been experiencing more lately.

It's hard to tell what is pregnancy-related and what is medicine related. I started taking Zoloft about 5 weeks ago to get a jump start on the postpartum depression I experienced last time. My OB suggested I start taking the meds now rather than wait until after delivery. I've always had issues with anxiety and depression so I figured I mind as well try to do something about it now so my kids don't suffer like I did with my own mom. It seems to be helping, but it's so hard to tell.

I went through a rough week a couple of weeks ago when one of my best friends lost her baby pre-term at 20 weeks. It really affected me negatively. I get very emotionally connected to my good friends and when they suffer a loss, I internalize it also. I just really, really hurt for her. It scares me because I just never knew anyone personally who had lost a baby that late in gestation. I know how common miscarriages are in the first trimester, and I kind of accept that, but the second, that really shocked me. It just makes me worry about my own pregnancy a little more than I might have, but I'm trying to relax a little more, especially now that my friend seems to be healing with her loss.

My mom is still not talking to me and that's still very upsetting. I did send her a Mother's day e-card and she acknowledged it to my sister, but she said nothing to me. Basically, I only ever get family updates from my sister now and she tries to be forthcoming and honest even if she knows it will upset me, which I appreciate. I've tried talking to my grandmother about it and she tries to sympathize, but she doesn't really want to get involved because she has her own set of problems with my mom, her daughter.

The female relationships in my family's history are horrible. It goes back as far as my great-great-grandmother. My grandmother's mother died when she was just nine so she was raised by her grandmother and they did not get along at all. My aunt, my grandmother's oldest daughter, left home when she was 16 and they didn't speak for many years. It wasn't until later in life that my aunt and grandmother finally became close again – best friends even. Then she sadly passed away at the young age of 62. My mom and my grandmom barely get along now. They tolerate each other at best. My mom says nasty things about my grandmom and it really makes me mad. I'm really close with my grandmom and I was also close to my aunt. It's mostly my mom that seems to stir the pot, but she'll never admit to that. It's ALWAYS someone else's fault.

Anyhow, had to get that off my chest because it kind of explains why I'm very nervous about finding out if we're having a little girl. I would love to have a daughter, but I'll always be apprehensive about my ability to have a good relationship with her because of my family history. I want to break the negative cycle and I think it's possible because I live out west now, away from the constant negative examples. My mother-in-law and my sister-in-law have a great relationship and I'm hoping it's one I can emulate. I have hope and several friends now have made some encouraging comments and that just helps me even more.

I don't know, I think maybe the Zoloft is helping. I'm hoping it will help with my confidence in helping to raise a little girl if that's the case. I'm not constantly being reduced to a puddle of tears at the oddest of times. I also feel a little more motivated now in the morning to get out of bed and get on with the day. For the past 3 nights, I've actually managed to fall asleep before midnight! Of course, then I wake up at 4 am to pee and then I'm up and can't fall back to sleep. But, things seem to be improving sleep-wise and I surely hope it continues!! I also feel a little less anxiety about leaving the house to do activities with Lucian at public places. I've taken him out on my own a little more and I've been feeling more motivated and confident to take him out in general and get out of the house. Now that he's approaching three, his whole world seems to be opening up to more opportunities and I'm feeling I want to embrace it more and more.

So far, I don't think I've gained any weight. It's hard to tell on my scale at home. According to my scale, I've lost a pound or two. I usually weigh myself in the mornings and my OB appointments are usually in the afternoon once I've eaten AND have a full bladder, so we'll see what happens later today. I'm trying not to be overly concerned about it because I'm really only supposed to gain 15 pounds anyhow. So, if I've made it almost half way in the pregnancy and not gained any weight, that's good I guess.

Truth be told, I am terrified of gaining weight. Reason being, the nerve compression in my leg. The more weight that sits on that nerve, the more painful it gets to the point of excruciating. The only solution for the pain is to lose weight. (I've also read about possible surgery and I may consider that later.) That's not really an option for me right now. I've been disappointed in myself for a long time now because I did not keep the weight off from Lucian's pregnancy. I had lost all the baby weight and then some by the time he was six months old, but it was mostly due to stress and being sick all the time because my immune system was compromised by the C-section. In hindsight, I should never have attempted to go back to work in an elementary school of all places. (Huge petri dish for a work environment, despite how much I loved my job.) When I decided to quit my job and work from home, and he started weaning, it all poured back on plus ten more pounds.

I was trying really hard to lose weight before we got pregnant but my problems with insomnia really made that difficult. Also, the joint and muscle pain with fatigue I experience has limited my ability to exercise. Since almost all my immediate family members have arthritis, I assume I must have some form of it. I've had repetitive stress injury symptoms from the time I was in my early twenties. I should have seen a doctor for all of this before getting pregnant, but I had lots of reservations about seeing a doctor. First being, my insurance plan sucked big time. I'm now getting medical assistance so that is no longer an issue, thank God!

It's no secret that the health care system sucks in this country. It's a never ending cycle. I was paying for insurance – the amount we could barely afford — but the policy really only would have helped me in the case of something really drastic, so I've never even picked out a primary care physician since I've lived here. My OBGYN was really the only provider I've ever needed since living here. I even purchased a maternity rider - thinking I was being the responsible American by paying extra for my insurance so that in the event I'd need another C-section, which I know my chances are high, that I would be covered. Well, turns out I got swindled by an insurance salesman who just told me what I wanted to hear when I thought I was asking all the right questions and doing all the proper research before signing on the dotted line. The maternity rider – that I had paid out several thousand dollars for over the course of almost 2 years – was only worth two thousand dollars and would ONLY cover a NORMAL VAGINAL delivery with NO COMPLICATIONS. Yeah, um, that's not me - I'm complicated. So, I had to scramble for a solution to get medical coverage over fear that the mounting medical bills would send us into bankruptcy.

What complicated things with our prior insurance was the fact that Lucian needs eye surgery. So we're potentially facing TWO surgeries before the end of this year. My C-section with Lucian cost around $40,000 dollars. Yes, that's forty THOUSAND dollars and that was when I had good insurance through my employer. We only paid $350.00 out of pocket to have Lucian at the hospital. So, you can imagine the stress I was under thinking how much it was going to cost us between a C-section and eye surgery with the private insurance that carried a hefty deductible plus 20 percent co-insurance!!

Luckily I was able to get Lucian onto KidsCare for a really low premium each month that doesn't carry a deductible and no co-insurance. It's been a major relief that are health insurance is more manageable and now I don't think I'll be so resistant to see a doctor for reasons other than prenatal care.

I did express my concerns about arthritis to my OB and she said the only thing they can test for and possible try to manage is rheumatoid arthritis. So, I may be getting a blood test for that today. Everything else will pretty much have to wait till after the baby is born and possibly after it weans from breast feeding.

One of my fears about seeing a doctor for my problems was that they might try and put me on a treatment plan with drugs that might compromise my fertility. Approaching "advanced maternal age" is not the time you want to be messing with drugs that could cause infertility when you want to have another baby before it's too late. So, I basically put my health on hold until after we're done having babies which, if this baby is a girl, will likely be soon. If it's a boy, we MIGHT try again for a girl. I just don't know how I'll feel. I love being the mom to a boy. It's great and I'm comfortable with the idea of a house full of boys. I'll just have to wait and see how I feel and if I can get over the feeling of wondering what life would have been like having a daughter.

Nate always teases me that they (the Davis family) come in packages of three. His family history is such that there have consistently been families with children in sets of three and most of them two boys and a girl. So, even if this is a boy we're having now, I wouldn't rule out having another just to see if we continue that trend. We'll just have to wait and see how I recover from the delivery and cross that bridge when we get to it.

More and more, I'm trying to learn to live day by day and not get so wrapped up in planning and worrying so much about the future and things I can not control. It's not easy and I'm not good at it, but I'm trying.