Sunday, March 11, 2012

Soothe Me, Smoothie

The drama of my stomach continues.

I realize I've only merely mentioned said drama by making meek statements like "my love/hate relationship with food continues..." and the like. But for the sake of the fact that "stomach issues" are not always appropriate to talk about on a blog, I leave it at that. Just know that since they day I knew I was pregnant, me and my stomach have been at odds. I'm also pretty sure the baby hates my stomach and chooses to maneuver it into many different places in my abdomen daily (even though the poor thing can barely move with enough gusto to make me notice it's presence, I'm fairly certain it plays tic-tac-toe with my internal organs daily.) With such drama, eating is a challenge, to say the least. And to make things even more fun? My body still manages to find a way to pack on pounds in non-baby-related places even when I'm barely eating enough to keep Paris Hilton alive.

So it goes.

And so goes the continued troubles with figuring out if I'm hungry, nauseous, sick, ate something wrong, ate too fast, etc. It's causing me to miss work or be unbearably uncomfortable at work on days when nothing suits. Poor Michael is having the hardest time figuring out what do to help me. I can't (read: don't) cook because raw things often still turn my stomach in a heartbeat (and it's just too much trouble.) When something does finally sound good, I try to eat and immediately get full or "unsettled." It's getting to the point that I truly am concerned about my nutrition (even though by looking at me, it appears I'm eating just fine. FRUSTRATING.) Nonetheless, I've got to find something that helps.

Breakfast has been the worst. I used to be a sweets-lover when it came to breakfast: chocolate donuts, waffles, cinnamon rolls, etc. but that quickly changed and I knew I needed protein. So I got some frozen breakfast sandwiches and that worked for a few weeks and then after one particularly rough day with nausea, that phase was OVER and I can't even stand the sight of frozen breakfast sandwiches. Since then, it's been hit or miss. Now that things are continuing to get worse, I'm lost.

So I was catching up on Big Mama's blog the other day and she had posted a smoothie recipe. I do like smoothies. (Milkshakes.) Knowing that I could use the fruit and the protein, I thought I would give it a shot. I had also read somewhere that both yogurt and spinach are good for ailing stomachs, so hopefully this is a good start.

After finally dragging me out of the house this afternoon (with the promise of a milkshake, no less) Michael and I made it to the grocery to pick up the ingredients and I did a test run. Here's Big Mama's recipe.

1/2 cup greek yogurt 

1/2 cup orange juice
a good handful of baby spinach leaves (I realize this isn’t precise, but I just grab a bunch and throw them in)
1 tablespoon of ground flax seed 
1 cup of a mix of frozen berries, bananas, peaches

I used regular yogurt because I'm afraid the greek would make me gag, even though we did buy it to maybe use later. I didn't use the spinach leaves yet - I wan to make sure I like the smoothie in general. And I certainly did not use ground flax seed because I don't know what that is or where to find it at the grocery. Not using any certain measurements, I threw everything together and hoped for the best. 

It wasn't too bad. The orange juice made it a little sour for my taste, but it wasn't horrible. I think with a few more berries, (or a teaspoon of sugar) it would be even better. I just hope I can make time in the morning to do this and that it helps get me and my stomach off to the right start. Say a prayer. 

Friday, March 9, 2012

16 Weeks

This post was supposed to go up on Sunday, March 3, and due to a headache I am convinced was trying to kill me, it's not being posted until today. I'm now 17 weeks. Sigh. 

I've seen this on other blogs and I thought it was a good idea, if anything for my own record-keeping. I haven't decided if I will do a weekly or monthly post or just follow my doctor appointments, so stay tuned. Also, most posts of this nature come with a cute belly picture and that's just not going to happen here.

We will also not be doing family belly semi-nude photos either, just for the record. My photographic mother will certainly document the pregnancy while I am fully clothed, but that will be it. 

So here are the current stats:

How far along: 16 weeks!

Size of baby: I don't know - those fruit/vegetable comparisons say the size of an avocado, however big that is. Measurements supposedly are 4.5 inches and 3.5 ounces. Still a tiny little thing. 

Total weight gain/loss: Yeah, this is the last time this category will appear on this list. I honestly don't know how much I've gained - my starting weight was wrong at the doctor, I hadn't been keeping track beforehand, and I really don't want to know. I get on the scale backwards at the doctor. I stress about enough as it is, plus food and I have had a love/hate relationship for the last four months, so I'm just doing the best I can. 

Maternity clothes: I'm not officially in maternity clothes, other than a couple of dresses. I just wear larger-size stretchy pants with longer tops. I have a couple of pairs of regular jeans that I'm still pretty comfortable in. Under garments have been my biggest nemesis. I don't see that changing any time soon.

Gender: We don't know for sure - EVERYONE seems to be convinced it's a girl. Which probably means its a boy. We will hopefully know for sure at our ultrasound on Friday, March 30!

Movement: I've only felt a couple of sensations that I suspect are the baby - an interesting "swimming fish" feeling that I've never felt before, so I assume that's probably my new resident. I know it's an active little thing though - in both ultrasounds and in listening to the heartbeat the other day, Baby has always put on a show for us, waving in the ultrasound and kicking and flipping for the Doppler. Keep it up, Baby!

Sleep: Oh, what an issue. Starting at about week 6, I haven't been able to make it a full night without waking up in the middle of the night starving. So the pattern we've been in since then has been that I fall asleep on the sofa around 8:30-9, wake up around 12-1 to eat something small, then head to bed until 6. It works pretty well, but sometimes it's a lot later when we wake up and we're getting in the bed at 3am. Poor Michael. Other than such an odd schedule, I sleep ok unless anxiety is getting the best of me. Then it's hopeless.

What I miss: ADVIL!!!!!!!!!!! I'm so lucky that I have a laid-back doctor who gave us a very liberal list of medicines that are "OK," but one of the absolutes has been no Advil. I have almost died (not really) from sinus headaches, crying and wishing for my blessed Advil Liqui-gels that so quickly came to my aid when I would have an unbearable headache. Luckily that's few and far between, so I'll stop my whining. But oh how wonderful the day will be when I can take those beautiful little teal pills.

Cravings: For much of the first 14 weeks I had to just eat things that didn't repulse me or have a strong odor, it was hard to determine what really was an actual craving. I've had a particular affinity for my Aunt Lou's homemade salsa (which is sadly all gone now) and pretty much anything tomato-based. (I read that tomato cravings are a sign that your body needs Vitamin C.) Who knows. Now I usually just fixate on anything I see on TV, particularly drink-wise. For instance, there was someone drinking a Coke from a glass bottle the other day on a show I was watching and instantly I wanted a drink from a glass bottle. I've also been craving fruity sodas like Fresca or Nehi, which I never particularly liked before. My love-hate relationship with food continues when I'm having my usual bouts with stomach issues, and that gets really frustrating.

Symptoms: Most symptoms like the constant nausea and headaches have abated for now, thank goodness. I've had low back pain consistently since the beginning, and now it's more centralized to one spot on my right side, but it comes and goes. I still get tired really easily, especially any time there was something adrenaline-related like the storm predictions the other day - I was BEAT after all of that waiting and anxiety. I will still cry at things rather easily, but for the most part my moods seem a little more stable than before. Michael might disagree.

Best moments: It may seem petty and vain, but since I can't really feel the baby move yet and since I still feel like I'm emerging from a cave I've been hiding in for several months, this made my day: I had several cute, young trainees in a recent training session last week who told me I had "the cutest pregnant clothes." I'm not fashionable at all, ya'll, so when anyone compliments me on what I'm wearing, it's well-received, especially now that I'm in that "Is she really pregnant?" phase. I had worn a couple of dresses with leggings and boots during the training, so evidently I had done something at least partially right and it worked. It made me feel a little less like a cow, so that was great!

In other pregnancy news: I went to my fourth doctor's appointment on Thursday. My mom went with me. Call me a wimp or whatever, but with the exception of the pregnancy confirmation appointment, I haven't gone to my OB appointments alone. Michael has been going, but he wasn't able to get away from work for this appointment, so mom willingly obliged. I don't go alone for several reasons, but mainly for the fact that if the doctor says anything that is remotely worrisome to me, I need another set of ears to help me disseminate the information. I don't know if I'll keep this up throughout the whole thing, but for now, going to the doctor is a family affair. Thursday was wonderful because Baby cooperated nicely and the doctor found the heartbeat with little to no problem. Mom voice-recorded it and since it was just one of those regular appointments, we were in and out relatively quickly. Mom was just thrilled at her first experience with grand baby #3, and that was special for me too.

Now if I can just withstand the countdown until the 30th...what's your vote - boy or girl?

The End

My incessant need for closure has led me to post a final farewell to this blog. Blogging was a whole new concept for me when I logged on l...