First Pregnancy Versus Fourth Pregnancy

This will be fun.

First of all, I’m pregnant?! It seems I forget pretty often because there is little time to think about it! The three little people that are dependent on me don’t seem to understand that I am growing a human and expect me to keep up with them as if nothing has changed. The blessing of this is that it keeps me active and it has definitely made this pregnancy fly by.

Symptoms

Throughout this pregnancy I have been dealing with an Ulcerative Colitis flare. With past pregnancies, pregnancy hormones (or something) put my body into remission at about week nine. Not this time. Typically I would dive straight into my supplemental regime and kick this to the curb, but alas, adequate studies have not been conducted with supplements enough to make me feel comfortable with the “risk”. My symptoms have improved but I am still dealing with it today. That being said, this could attribute to some of my exhaustion, but mostly I would attribute it to the little people honestly. I’d say I’m a pretty tough little lady.

At the beginning of pregnancy, I dealt with mild nausea, but nothing that ever sent me to the toilet. I thank God often that I have had four pregnancies without extreme nausea. I experienced fatigue in the first three months, making sure I was tucked into bed by 8 pm at the latest.

Round ligament “discomfort”. I won’t call it pain because it’s nothing compared to labor, but the uterine growth and round ligament stretching has been way more intense this time around. This one doesn’t make sense to me. Doesn’t my body just know what to do? It’s been stretched many a times already so why is it screaming at me so much this time?! Oh yes….I don’t sit still very often. That could be part of it.

Diet

I’m a dietitian as you are all aware. That being said, I can tell you that my diet has been far from optimal lately. The beginning of the pregnancy was mostly white carb focused: gluten free bread, cream of wheat, crackers, cereal, but I was able to get a whole buncha healthy stuff in there too. When the nausea subsided, it was back to the usual nutrient-rich meals. Then COVID-19 hit. I’m at home with all of the boys. As much as I aim to focus on nutrition for myself and my family, we are in a bit of survival mode as we all are. There are a lot of baked goods going down around here, let’s just leave it at that. =) In all fairness, I know I am still doing a heckuva job trying to feed us all with nutrition as BEST as I possibly can given the circumstances. So there’s that.

Cravings

I’d say my cravings this pregnancy around are more intensified. As I mentioned, the Pop Tart craving wouldn’t leave me alone. There has been a lot of pizza yearned for and consumed this time around. I was really into fruit at the beginning of pregnancy but that has now normalized. I guess it was most intense in the beginning of pregnancy. I feel pretty normal now. Kind of boring compared to my first pregnancy.

Weekly Bump Pics?!

I was religious about taking weekly bump pics for all three of the boys’ pregnancies. This time around, I’ve gotten maybe five, three of which I took as selfies.

19 week pic. I have seriously BUMPED since this picture was taken.

When will it feel real?

In lieu of our current life situation, my mind is heavily focused on remaining positive, keeping my family and loved ones safe, and making the most of our home life situation. There is nothing that really needs to be done to prepare for the arrival of baby except to buy some super teeny tiny diapers. Because we aren’t finding out the gender, I would like to sort through the newborn baby clothes bin to find some gender neutral clothes to hold us over, JUST in case a little girl decides to join the family. If it is a girl, there will be a whole lot of pink flowing in this house, you better believe it. So I guess there’s that too.

My appointments with the midwives have been every five weeks. Everything is looking perfect. I have my anatomy scan next week. My first one was canceled due to the virus. As of now, Dana will be able to join me for that appointment. My following prenatal appointments will be completed over the phone which is going to be so weird and sad because I won’t be able to hear my favorite little heartbeat noise that I so look forward to at those in-clinic appointments.

I’m thinking that maybe the ultrasound will make this pregnancy feel more real?

When I was pregnant with Bode, I remember spending so much time planning for the nursery. The amount of hours I spent looking for a rug and wall decor seems completely unreal at this point. For goodness sake I even sewed him a baby blanket! I remember sitting in the nursery once it was completed, anxiously awaiting the arrival of my sweet boy.

I am equally as excited about baby number four, there is just less time to think about it. I am planning on diving into the childbirth books in the next couple of months so I can begin to mentally prepare for labor and delivery, something that I seem to keep putting off in my mind.

I think I’m going to wrap this post up although I feel like I could go on and on. It’s becoming a bit of a doozy.

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I pray that everyone is staying healthy and safe. Take care, friends.

xoxo

 

 

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Intentions

On most mornings, I like to wake up at 5:00 am so that I can have about an hour to myself before the kids wake up. I either walk on the treadmill, catch up on emails, read a nutrition article, etc. I notice that on those mornings when I take a little time to myself, that it  tends to set the pace for a more positive day.

I’m writing this post at 6:22 am, right after finishing up a walk on the treadmill. Unbelievably the house is still asleep (jk I just heard the boys upstairs).

I have a rainy day ahead of me, with three boys five and under, quarantined to our house. I am setting the intention right now that I will make the best of this day and this time. I will remind myself to be patient. I will take mommy time outs when necessary. I will remember to smile with my family. I will try not to be too hard on myself.

I need to limit my exposure to negativity. We ALL need to limit our exposure to negativity. I want to stay informed but I don’t want to feel suffocated with the current situation like I have been feeling lately.

I miss normalcy as we all do.

I pray that everyone is being safe, being smart, and staying positive. We believe what we tell ourselves which is why I continue to post about positivity even if I may be struggling with it some days.

Make the most of this day and this time. I will if you will. Set an intention.

xoxo

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A Beautiful Surprise!

Not long after I wrote the last post announcing my pregnancy, we had a big surprise!

Benjamin Thomas was born on September 24th, 2016 at 11:41 am. He decided 36 weeks was a long enough wait and he just had to come meet us! His birth weight was 6#1oz and he 19 1/4 inches long.

He is a sweet and healthy rock star and has been from the start.

Labor and delivery was just like with Bode’s in a sense: quick. I woke up with back pain from what I thought was just a bad sleep position but then started noticing contractions fairly frequently. I was thinking these were Braxton Hicks contractions and began to time them out; about 10 minutes apart. I called the midwife and gave her the low-down. My options were to go into the hospital and have baby monitored for a couple of hours to see what was going on, or to first try to sit down and relax with a cup of water to see if the contractions and back pain would subside. Since I hadn’t had anything to eat that morning and had been on my feet since I woke up, I wanted to try to relax with a big cup of water first, and see if I was just dehydrated. As some time passed, the back pain was progressively getting worse and the brunt of it was coinciding with the contractions. Dana and I decided that it was time to go in to the hospital.

Backing it up a bit…

My plan was to deliver at a small birth center with two beautiful suites, and my hope was to try for a water birth again. Because I was potentially going in to labor at 36 weeks, which is considered premature, I was not going to be able to deliver at the birth center. The good news was, my midwives could still deliver the baby at two local hospitals. I chose one of the two (one that we hadn’t toured) and that was that. It wasn’t what I had planned but such is life.

Again with our “plan,” the plan was to pack for the birth center/hospital that particular weekend. As a couple who likes to be prepared, this whole surprise threw us off our rockers a bit!

Okay back to the story…

We tossed a suitcase together. We hustled and rounded up my neighbor and then my parents to take care of Bode so we could head to the hospital. The drive there wasn’t so bad. I made a couple of phone calls and had a snack since I hadn’t eaten breakfast.

When we got to the hospital, we spent a good 10-15 minutes just trying to figure out where to park and where their labor and delivery floor was. By the time we got there and got into triage, I was having contractions 3-4 minutes apart and I was 3-4 centimeters dilated. At that point, the nurse told me I wasn’t going anywhere. The flood gates opened and my emotions drowned me. I was ready, I wasn’t ready, is Bode going to be okay?, am I going to be a good mom to two kids?, am I mentally prepared?. It didn’t matter if I was ready or not, because this baby had an entrance to make! I pulled myself together and started getting into my “place” so that I could mentally prepare myself to get this baby into our arms.

After the midwife arrived, I walked myself to the labor and delivery room. Just as with Bode, Benjamin was in the “sunny-side-up” position which equals terrible back labor. And just like his brother, he turned himself just enough before making his way down the birth canal. To speed things up a bit with the story, I transitioned very quickly and had that baby about an hour and a half after arriving into that room. People were serious when they said the second time pushing baby out tends to be easier! The pushing part lasted all of about five minutes. Not complaining about that.

When baby was placed on my belly, I looked down and saw a head of thick dark hair! Dana got his mini me! All of his screenings came back perfect. We got to go home 48 hours later.

I am so blessed to have two beautiful and healthy boys. Bode is adjusting and we are beginning to notice some behavioral changes with him. I know this is all normal and we are all learning how to be a family of four.

That is the birth story in a nutshell! Life is so good.

And just for fun, a couple of my last pregnancy pics:

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Time to Ring in the New Year and Time for a Quick Update!

Oh, heyyyyy! Yes we are still alive and kickin’ over here! Last time I checked in was just after my 30th birthday so over a month ago. Monthly posts are what is happening these days I guess. You know what else? I don’t hardly take any photos (besides of Bode of course!). But ya know, It is what it is!

So, since my last post here this is what has happened…

1.I thoroughly enjoyed my favorite meal day of the year, Thanksgiving, and so did Mr. Bode! I was much too excited to eat therefore no food photo was taken. Before we ate, we ran in our favorite 5k.

2. A couple of days after Thanksgiving, Bode got to hang out with grandma and grandpa for a week while Dana and I went on a Caribbean cruise. The cruise sailed from Miami to Panama and stopped at Cayman Islands, Ocho Rios, Jamaica, and Puerto Limon, Costa Rica. In Cayman Islands we swam with the stingrays and got to hold a big female stingray! In Jamaica we climbed up a bunch of waterfalls and laid by the beach, and in Costa Rica we took a pontoon tour and got to see sloths, monkeys, crocodiles, and other beautiful wild life.

The cruise itself was exquisite. Everything was included so we ate and drank like kings and queens. It was my mission to eat bacon everyday, and mission was completed.

crystal cruise

Formal night/Captain’s dinner…

crystal cruise

The “elves” decorated the boat while we were there! So pretty!

crystal cruise crystal cruise

As fun as the cruise was, I was sooooo excited to get home and snuggle my baby. That is the longest I had ever been away from him!

3. After the cruise we were busy into the holiday season and lots of fun holiday parties! We all got hit with the stomach bug pretty bad, and after that we all got colds. In fact, my whole entire year was this way. Bode gets sick, mom gets sick. Welcome to parenthood, right? Thanks daycare! 😉

4. Christmas was celebrated in Colorado with Dana’s family and then back here in Minnesota with mine. I still can’t believe Christmas is over! We had so much fun with our family and friends.

5. Now here we are about to kick off the New Year! Where on earth did 2015 go? It surely was a great year but as always, I’m excited to see what 2016 has in store for us. I wish you all the best of health and much happiness as we ring in the New Year!

Check in with you all who knows when! 😉

xoxo

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Birthdays and Other Updates!

Oh, hi!

Monthly posts seem to be a theme here. So, it’s time to check in again!

Bode Turned 1!

Since we caught up last, Mr. Bode celebrated his first birthday! We celebrated with lots of friends and family.

The party was themed Little Pumpkin/Fall so I had a lot of fun with decorations and the menu! The spread included:

  • Jack-o-lantern carrots, broccoli, and dip
  • Sliced apples with yogurt caramel dip
  • Crackers and cheese
  • Chicken wild rice soup
  • Dinner rolls
  • Homemade cupcakes: pumpkin, chocolate, and vanilla!

fall birthday party fall birthday party fall birthday party fall birthday party

Bode demolished his cupcake. He is my boy after all.

He was seriously spoiled by all of the family and friends that came to his party to celebrate, all of the gifts he received, and all of the sweet messages from family and friends! He is loving all of his new toys and I am loving dressing him in all of his new clothes!

Since we last checked in, I turned the BIG 30.

30

I was also incredibly spoiled with gifts and cards and messages! We went to the Minnesota Zoo over the weekend and to Chanhassen Dinner Theater to see Sister Act. So much fun!

chanhassen sister act

On Monday, my actual birthday, I got my free coffee at Caribou, Bode and I hung out with grandma and grandpa, and Dana and I had a date night dinner at Red Cow. I got the french onion burger and devoured it!

Let’s see…what else is new?

Today is day 4 of being done with breastfeeding.  I wasn’t entirely ready to be done but when he started accidentally biting and my health started acting up, I decided it needed to be time to be done. The whole weaning process took about two months for me. I decided to take it very very slow because I am very susceptible to plug milk ducts. It is strange being done with breastfeeding and definitely liberating. I feel like I have more time now! He did such a great job with the weaning process.

He is a fabulous eater with a large appetite. For breakfast today he ate some dry cereal while I got his oatmeal prepared, a bowl of oatmeal made with whole milk, blueberries, cinnamon, and peanut butter, a whole banana, and a little bit of whole milk from a cup. This kid can eat more than me! K, not quite, but close. He has 7 teeth now.

He is now in full walking mode which he thinks is a blast and so do we. Everyone told me that life gets MUCH crazier once he starts walking but honestly, as long as the house is baby-proofed, I actually prefer the walking. I don’t have to carry him as much because he will walk to me!

He just had his one year check up and he was 20 lbs 10 ounces and 29 3/4 inches.

I suppose that is it for now! Always nice checking in with you all! I am getting SUPER excited for Thanksgiving! How on earth it is next week already I have no idea.

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I Wish Someone Would Have Warned Me…

I am feeling incredibly warm and fuzzy (and emotional) after reading a post written by Jen Hatmaker titled, “I Wish Someone Would Have Warned Me About All These Big Feelings.”

Link: http://community.today.com/parentingteam/post/i-wish-someone-wouldve-warned-me-about-these-big-feelings

She puts into words how it feels to be a mom and describes the way we feel about our kids.

The love that we have for our children is a love that we could never imagine in our wildest dreams. It’s a kind of love that almost scares you because it is so BIG and it is the best thing in the world. You can’t ever imagine the thought of loving your child more than you already do and then you wake up the next day, and see that sweet smile, and you realize that you love them even MORE than you did yesterday. How is that possible? The heart is capable of so much love. How can one little human have so much power over a person?

I don’t need to add much more because her article speaks for itself. Please read it!

I love my little Bode with all of my heart and soul.

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