Monday, August 21, 2006

A Collection of Fears Disguised as Complaints

17 weeks tomorrow. I'm not sure how that happened.

I'm still sick with "morning" sickness, albeit not quite as often as I was, it's still there. The nausea? Unrelenting. It seems that the only thing that makes me feel better is still french fries or french bread pizzas. Oh, or chocolate milk shakes. I don't know that I am feeding Cricket as well as I should be, but I'm taking the prenatals, except for when I forget. I'm going to boil some eggs tonight so I can try to get at least one egg a day. That way I know Cricket will be getting protein. I guess I need to go the store to buy some eggs first. Oy.

I guess I'm the exception to the rule that "usually morning sickness ends after the first trimester." I talked to my mom about this and she admitted that when she was pregnant with me, she was sick pretty much into her 8th month. Great. I can't imagine how I'm going to bend over like that if I'm still being sick at that point. When on vacation, I had to throw up into my handy-dandy bag in the backseat of a car while my parents were in the front seat and my partner sat next to me. I encouraged everyone to keep talking about whatever banality it was that we were discussing, but somehow, no one could and the sound of my retching seemed to echo off the beige seats. Finally I said, "Okay, I'm done! Now what about the property owners pool?" Nothing kills a conversation like a little barfing in the backseat.

But considering that that and my fatigue (which experts also said would end after the first trimester) are my only signs, I suppose I'm alright with it. I can't help but feeling like I'm not pregnant a lot. I'm still wearing (most) of my usual clothes with just a slight thickening around the waist. I'm dying to feel the kid move. A few times I've wondered-- is that it? But then realized it was a pretty constant beat and, geez, it must be my pulse. I'm still slightly uncomfortable talking to people about how I feel. "How far along are you," someone will ask. I reply in weeks and the querier will translate to months: "Oh God! Four months! How do you feel?" It's just not polite to respond, "Like shit! Thanks for asking!"

I beat myself up at night when I realize I'm on my back or stomach. Yes, still stomach sleeping. I asked Partner if she thought I was killing Cricket. She said no, but how can I feel so much guilt? All my dreams about Cricket have indicated she's a girl, but when I'm awake, he's a boy. And pretty much every single person who has held our ultrasound pictures has said to us, "I think it's a boy." We aren't going to find out. That's been the mantra. I wonder if finding out would make it more real? Because it's real, but not. Does that even make sense? Is there a baby in me? A wee boy or girl? Ultrasound pictures would indicate that was true, but the pictures are up there, and my stomach is down here. Just kick me already, kid, and let's get the show on the road.

A couple nights ago I had a dream that everyone was posting on their blogs about the baby things that were "must-haves." I think this has come from the fact that I was googling some baby products and realized I have no clue whatsoever and I am terrified about making the wrong choices. What if I choose a crappy stroller? What if I don't get the "right" developmental toys? I woke up in a panic about this. I'm not quite as panicked right now, but I still have no clue. And at what point do we start buying stuff?

A month or so ago we were at our lesbian fellowship dinner with people from church, and frog was commenting on the stuff she had already gotten for the future tadpole. She's written about this on her blog too and I had to tell her that scared the shit of out of me. Must be my superstitious Irish self. Or my cultural Jew. (Kenahora!) I told her I couldn't do it. Buy stuff. But then I thought today, "How did we get to 17 weeks?" and I thought maybe I should start thinking about getting some stuff. If I turn my head to the right, I can see the few things we have bought from the Osh Kosh outlet store in South Carolina. Seven things maybe? Ten? Two sleepers, overalls, some onsies, a pair of booties all ranging in size from birth to one year. I was dazed when we came out of the store. Then on the plane from Charleston to Atlanta, I had a small anxiety attack we attributed to flying and my vivid imagination. Looking back, I wonder if it was more about buying baby clothes than fear of hurtling through the air.

I start school again next week and taking three Really Hard Classes. And we'll break ground on the new house soon. So I'll be taking three RHCs, building a new house, trying to sell this house (and potentially moving into transition housing) , and stressing about when to start preparing for the baby. I feel like I've been asleep at the wheel, people.

We were talking about going to Manhattan in November. Doesn't that sound just great? I love the city. And then we went to the antique market yesterday. After walking around for about an hour and half, I said to Partner I didn't think we could go to NYC after all. I mean, I felt like I could go home and sleep for hours after only a few hours at the Washtenaw Farm Council grounds. How could I be in the city? I'd surely die.

And I know this all sounds very kvetchy, but when I think about it, this is all about feeling scared and unprepared. Am I still throwing up because there's something wrong with the baby? Am I so fatigued because I am just not exercising or is there something more insidious at stake? Everyone one of the items in this catalogue can be culled down to that binary: is it just X, or is something going wrong? For the most part I feel good and confident about most parts of our life even though this post doesn't show any of that. It's just that I am 17 weeks tomorrow. And holy shit, you know?


Blogger Gandksmom said...

WTG making it to 17 weeks. I bet you feel that baby any day now. I didn't feel my oldest until 20 weeks and my youngest was about 14 weeks! I bet you have been feeling something and not knowing it. Try laying on your back on the couch and concentrate. You'll feel it guaranteed. Have they said anything about your placenta being up front at all? That will definately reduce your feeling movement!

3:12 PM  
Blogger Hoping said...

congrats on being 17 weeks! hope you feel the baby move very soon.

3:42 PM  
Anonymous Lynnette said...

Sorry you're still feeling crappy...But I totally understand about the shopping. I won't allow myself to shop yet, either. I don't know how you can stand the suspense...I've got 5 1/2 weeks until we (hopefully) find out, and its KILLING me. You're a braver soul than I. Take care of yourself!

3:45 PM  
Anonymous pixi said...

That's such a perfect title.

The movement will make it all the more real, and you'll be feeling it soon, for sure. I was really really feeling it somewhere in the early 20's. Before then it was the intangible flutters and squirms. Then all of a sudden it became unmistakable.

You're moving right along, though, sister. It'll get better--the scariness--I promise. It'll even be fun at some point. Of course you'll still have those freakout moments and those "Holy Shit!" moments, but I would say the late 2nd - early 3rd trimester is the best part.

4:01 PM  
Blogger frog said...

Feel free to come over and dig through the bins at the lilypad--I'm STILL hitting the thrift stores and garage sales, and you're welcome to borrow anything that we have.

So, see? You're not unprepared, it's just that lots of your stuff is at our house. :)

4:06 PM  
Blogger Pixie said...

I didn't officially feel Baby G really KICK until I was 20 weeks along- although at 17 weeks I felt the tiniest little bloop, bloop. bloop in my belly... The kicking was at 20 weeks. And I was like you-Come on already baby, show me the money! lol
Way to go!
Here in Atlanta, me and Tomcat are really excited to read about your continuing amazing progress...

There's a book that's like the Consumer Report thing- but only for baby stuff- its called Baby Bargains and its wonderful. It'll help you to find the best stuff for the best deals....
You'll do the right things...You already are- I believe that GUILT come with the parental territory- yikes!
Well, Happy 17 weeks Baby Cricket!

4:23 PM  
Blogger art-sweet said...

chirp, chirp!

I hope you come to NYC! I can't wait to meet you, and I'd definitely come down to the big city for that!

4:33 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

This sounds so much like me, except instead of throwing up I had the sinus headache that would. not. end. (and significant nausea, but the headache was the hardest part) My fatigue never truly went away, but it did get a whole lot better, though not until sometime after 20 weeks. I also did not feel the baby move at all until after 20 weeks (Cait, who is reading over my shoulder, says, "Pregnancy didn't start to get even vaguely fun until you were somewhere in the 20s"). So you may have to endure another month or so of all this, but it will get better.

And I think you should go to New York in November. You may have to move a little slower than you used to, but I think you'll actually be feeling pretty damn good around then and you would have fun. Kind of a last pre-baby hurrah, you know? Plus, NYC's not THAT far from here, maybe we could come up there. (Ha! With a 7 month old?! Perhaps not. But maybe!)

Glad you've made it to 17 weeks - practically halfway! Whee!

6:06 PM  
Blogger Brooke said...

Newborns don't need much. Also, baby showers. Seriously, I think we only bought a few outfits (failed cycle presents) ourselves. We got so. much. stuff. at our two showers, and they weren't even that big. Plus all the presents when the babe came home.

And congrats on 17 weeks! It helps (me) that you are (exactly!) one year behind us. So..lets see...Em felt Sanna move...checking blog archives...September 1st.

6:28 PM  
Blogger fisher queen said...

Holy shit indeed. I am huge and still wonder if it's real. I have all those fears too- sigh.

Some help for what to get: there is a book called 'Baby Bargains' by Denise and Alan Fields, well it's a tome really, but it tells you in depth about everything you need and don't need, best manufacturers, websites, etc. It's a good thing to read when you're still too scared to buy anything, but feel you should be doing something.

8:38 AM  
Blogger Emilin said...

I thought Baby Bargains was still a little too consumer-happy for me.

I slept on my back pretty much until I went into labor, and my midwife told me that as long as I was comfortable and the kid wasn't freaking out, we wouldn't worry.

11:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm twelve weeks, and I have the same feeling, wondering if I really *am* pregnant. Fortunately my nausea has been negligable, but since it's really the only symptom I have, I kind-of welcome it. I have dreams that I tell everyone I was just kidding, and I just wanted to eat whatever I wanted and be the center of attention. Then I wake up to pee for the seventh time in the night and I realize maybe this Really Is Happening.
Still not even thinking of buying stuff, and I get offended if people send me baby things, like they're going to give me bad luck. I guess it will "kick" in when the bellybean starts jumping around in there.


12:25 PM  
Blogger quixoticmama said...


Remember - don't count on your prenatals. They're insurance, that's all :)

Also - try to get a minimum of TWO eggs per day. That will help you get enough protein, AND DHA.


1:10 PM  
Anonymous Beth said...

I'm at 18 weeks (yesterday) - still nauseated, still fatigued, still not feeling movement, still not really feeling pregnant. Utterly freaked out that tomorrow's u/s will have terrible news.

Also, I can't bring myself to buy baby stuff. The hand-me-down crib & changing table are tucked away in the garage.

I have no useful advice, but at least you're not alone.

1:12 PM  
Blogger Clementine said...

Congratulations on 17 weeks! And I have to agree with some of your earlier commenters--newborns don't need tons of stuff, but that book Baby Bargains is helpful in helping sort through the things you decide you do want.

1:32 PM  
Blogger hd said...

First, congrats...17 weeks is a lot of weeks! I agree, though, that it does fly. I told someone today that I am 20 weeks, but I'll actually be 22 tomorrow. Already I'm losing track!

As for the Baby Bargains Book, I agree with Emilin, it IS consumer-happy, but it gave me an idea about certain products I know nothing about. Someone gave it to me, so I figured I'd take advantage of it. I flipped through it when I was unsure about this or that, but I also asked my FWKs (Friends With Kids) about a lot of things.

Finally, I felt random flutters at 16 weeks, but the day after my 18 week U/S the real fun began. My doc told me that the position of the placenta can affect how much movement you feel, but in the next few weeks Cricket will be big enough to kick through the placenta so I'm sure it's just around the corner.

Hang in there!

5:08 PM  
Blogger lagiulia said...

I'm so so sorry you're still sick. I was sick to the end, throwing up while the babes were being pulled out of me. Egad. Rest assured, I did get two babies in the end, and they're now 10 months and crawling around in front of me as I type this. I also had fatigue right through the pregnancy. Never had that second wind... whatever. Every pregnancy is unique. You will soon feel the baby move, and you will soon see your belly grow more, sick and tired or not. It will come. Hang in there. And don't feel bad about complaining. Pregancy can be tough both physically and emotionally, and you need to vent, you know?

1:05 PM  
Blogger Holly said...

oh my goodness, you sound just like Lois (15 weeks).
The nutritional thing is out the window. While she is not throwing up several times a day anymore, the food thing is not great and one of the staples in our lives is currently chicken parm grinders.
Lois also has no belly, just a broader waistline. Our friend who is a week behind us looks pregnant.
Lois also won't buy anything yet.
The good thing is that we have several friends with newborns and basically are telling us there are certain things you will "need" and many things you don't.
we can't wait to feel kicking because even though we are into the second trimester (and other than the morning sickness) it's like she doesn't feel pregnant all the time. it's hard to explain.
her mother recently told her that she had morning sickness for 9 months, so that was a fabulous pick-me-up for Lois.
best of luck to you and i hope you feel better soon!

9:36 AM  
Anonymous Erin said...

I started feeling movement really early, at 14 1/2 weeks, which was both a relief since I had so few symptoms and terrifying when the Braxton-Hicks started up the next week. I think I was wearing maternity shirts at about 16-17 weeks but didn't start wearing the pants until 21. Before then, I just wore below-waist jeans, but I needed the longer shirts to cover the thickening belly. I "popped" at about 21 weeks.

At my very first OB appt, 7w5d, J asked if I was "floundering" the baby by sleeping on my stomach. The doctor looked at him like "Are you serious?" I've always been told it's best not to sleep on your back but your stomach is fine. Pretty soon that won't be too comfortable, but it's fine until then.

2:57 PM  
Blogger A said...

I've always slept on my stomach durung pregnancy. I think you're fine. And feh, Cricket wont know a crappy stroller from a bugaboo.

7:33 PM  
Blogger Estelle said...

Ah, AJ puked for months. She then delievered an eleven and a half pound kid, so puking can't be all that bad. Cricket's fine.
Just don't buy a travel system, and you're good. Travel systems mean good stroller and shitty carseat, or good carseat and shitty stroller. I'll hook you up in the carseat department ;) you're on your own for the rest.

11:29 AM  
Blogger Mel Wells said...

Ahhh, this is so me. I'm 16 weeks 2 days today and I'm still throwing up, still have to take a nap everyday - sometimes my naps last 3 hours and I still need 8-9 hours sleep at night. I'm so lucky that I work for myself. I would hate to still be puking in the bathroom of an employer. Still sleeping on my back, my right side, my stomach, anyway I can. I can feel at little hardening of my abodomen but I'm not showing. No need for maternity clothes. I live out of the country and am planning on traveling back to NC in October for a babyshower so I had to start making baby registries weeks ago. I nearly died. What was all this stuff? What did I need? I went on a massive email campaign with my best friends (all mothers already) to help me out. If I didn't have them I'd be freaking out.
You are not alone.

9:23 PM  

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