Monday, May 24, 2010

Notes From Week 32

I think I’m getting back fat.

When I not only told this to Chris but also pointed out the area under question, he said to me....


I know, I know. I’m pregnant. I’m supposed to get back fat, puffy legs and hemorrhoids. I get it. But every once in awhile can’t I just be the girl who is genuinely not too thrilled about getting back fat even if it’s all for the good of the baby?

Seems like as I approach the last 8 weeks of pregnancy, the only things getting bigger on me are the belly and the legs. The boobs – completely at a standstill. And to be honest, I’m a little disappointed. Here I was thinking I’d be well into a D-cup by now and….sadly, not the case. The only thing that might soon need a girdle would be my thighs. And what is the biological purpose of bigger pregnant thighs? Is Max going to nurse off my thighs? Will I need to pump them too?

As you can tell, week 32 of pregnancy is off to a good start. I’m feeling good – except for feeling like a marshmellow – but still wouldn’t mind if Max decided to come a few days early. A few weeks early. All right, kid, how important are these last 8 weeks. Isn’t this something we could cover outside of the womb? Aren’t you tired of being underwater already?

Max’s movements have completely changed in the past 2 weeks. It goes from feeling like flutters to feeling like pops to feeling like a drum beating to feeling something scraping against your insides. I feel activity throughout the day, every 3 hours or so, and it’s a lot of movement. When I asked Chris what he thought Max might be doing in there, he said probably rearranging the furniture. He just seems really restless and wiggly (can’t imagine where he got that from). I feel his little heels rubbing against my belly. They feel so small but they are strong! Sometimes he moves so much that my entire stomach moves with him.

As you approach the end of pregnancy, you get mixed reactions from everyone else. Some people stare at you like you’re a sideshow. Like they’ve never seen a pregnant woman before. Others can’t help but give you free advice about…..insert anything. At the gym, I get a lot of don’t work too hard or you’ll give birth right here from the old men. Is that all it takes? Then watch me work harder. The good news is that I’ve finally reached that point in pregnancy where people no longer ask me how I’m feeling. FINALLY! I guess they just assume at this point that I feel big and uncomfortable.

(which I am)

But of course they have something else to say. So now they are asking me:

I bet you’re ready to be done.

It’s not even a question. More of a statement they make after looking at my big belly. Really it’s just a reminder that I’m almost done but not really done. Thank you for reminding me. There are still over 8 weeks to go, trust me I’ve done the math and know that it’s still a long time.

The real problem is that I have 8 weeks to go and it is ALREADY 90 DEGREES IN CHICAGO. I thought I might be able to sneak through most of this without experiencing full-on summer while pregnant. I’ve survived a lot of hot things – Ragbrai, Kona – but I have a feeling summer pregnancy will be even hotter.

At temperatures above 90 degrees, the pregnant woman becomes uncomfortable in her habitat. Not only did I have instant cankles today but it’s grown to full blow thankles. The epidemic is spreading from my ankles to my thighs until all I can see is one entire stump of swollen thick leg.

Which, in case you were wondering, is very sexy.

I got myself out of the car today and actually had to peel my thankles off the leather seats. I might need to start applying Body Glide to the back of my legs if I wear shorts into the car again.

For the first time I ever I walked on to the pool deck today and declared it too hot. I actually got into the water without any fussing, without saying “it’s cold cold cold” or without jumping up and down while flapping my arms (because that warms you up…right). Instead I started swimming right away, it felt so refreshing but within 50 yards I was hot.

I’ve recharged my spirit about swimming this week because I decided the other day that I am now “in training”. I want to do the Big Shoulders 2.5K swim on Labor Day weekend. I got all fired up to start swimming consistently and with purpose again. But as I got into my swim today I realized the event will be about 4 weeks after giving birth so would I really be able to fit into my wetsuit again? I almost abandoned the idea altogether but realized this is how you give up on your goals and settle for being less than yourself. I might as well try. If I have to use a shoe horn to stuff my post-pregnant remnants into the wetsuit then so be it. I’ve got to try.

After swimming, I got out of the pool and bent over to pick up my pool toys. Chris was standing right behind me when he said your butt is dropping.

Just when you think you’ve heard it all. I figured this was yet another side effect of pregnancy – like, the baby dropped or your boobs sagged. But I didn’t think I’d hear it from my husband. I stood back up, gave him that WHAT DID YOU JUST SAY look when he said:

If you want some feedback, your butt is dropping when you swim.

Here I was thinking he was telling me that my ass was becoming one continent of back fat and blubber now migrating toward the floor when it turns out I’m actually getting a swim lesson. I’m sinking. Which doesn’t surprise me – I have a small human in my belly. I can barely kick enough to keep my own body afloat let alone his too. I'm not sure who these women are that feel more buoyant in the water when pregnant. Do they carry the baby in their ass?

Chris told me not to take too long to get ready after swimming. As I stood in the shower, I laughed. Everything takes me long these days. Pulling a workout shirt over my head takes me a long time. Putting on my shoes takes a long time. Making one more pitstop in the bathroom before I leave takes a long time. And….oh my god. MY EYES! MY EYES! …..

All of a sudden I’m moving really fast. Quickest pregnancy transition ever. I walk out of the locker room to find Chris.

I was just very VERY traumatized.


I saw the water aerobics teacher naked.

We both shudder.

Switching to a more pleasant topic, I had my baby shower on Sunday. It was a lovely event that my mom put together for about 50 family and friends. Let it be known that I wore a dress and even had on heels - for all of 10 seconds before I said out loud to myself fuck these shoes and put on flip flops. Normally I find high heels to be in the category of stupid things women do to themselves for no reason at all but decided when you are carrying 25+ extra pounds it becomes incredibly stupid – and painful. I spent the rest of the day walking around my mom’s house barefoot and pregnant. Literally.

Your baby shower is kind of like getting married except instead of being told you look beautiful, you’re either told that you look great (lie) or you look huge (truth). By the end of the day, I felt huge, I was exhausted and definitely had eaten too much cake.

I actually woke up in the middle of the night still tasting cake and had the urge to barf. I decided just to pee instead.

When we got home from the shower, I told Chris to leave everything in the car partly because if it’s in the car I don’t have to deal with it but he insisted on being the world’s most helpful husband and brought all of the stuff upstairs. I had to close the door to Max's bedroom because I couldn’t handle looking at all of it. I have no idea what most of it is for or when to use it or how much more stuff I actually need. I’m not panicking yet but I am sending out antsy emails to friends asking them how many EXACTLY how many bottles do I need. I need to know. And what about pacifiers. What about nipples. What else. WHAT ELSE!?!? All I know is that I have now gotten about 100 (adorable, all adorable) blankets which I am thinking I will hide in a very cold corner of the house and cover myself up with until July 28th.

Chris has been experiencing some type of nesting that involves freakish productivity and cooperation. There is nothing lately that I ask him to do that he won’t do. Plus he insists on doing everything. He raced on Saturday and then on Sunday willingly submitted himself to becoming my mother’s baby shower slave for the day. Not only that but his mother was there giving orders too. He took it, all of it, with a beer and a smile. Mind you, this role involved standing outside, shirtless, in 90 degree heat, frying homemade eggrolls in a Fry Daddy, being bossed around by my mom in her teacher voice, washing about 100 dishes all while being surrounded by women (not really a fantasy when you are related to 50 percent of them).

This morning, stranger things were afoot. He was up at 5 am assembling the stroller. It is now stored in the basement bike rack along with the high chair. Yes, things are changing at the Waterstraat house. Let it be known that something has taken the place of a bike. I never thought I would see the day.

It is now around 9 pm and right on cue – Max is awake and kicking. He actually has the hiccups. When the pops in your belly pulse at the same rate – you got hiccups in there. I made Chris come over and feel it happening. I’m sure at this point he thinks – woman, I’ve felt your stomach 293902340 times, enough already. I don’t know why but each time I feel him move it fascinates me more. Maybe because I know that it’s a feeling you could never replicate or maybe even something I’ll never feel again after this is all over.

5 minutes have gone by and he’s still hiccupping. I’m still fascinated. I decide to keep my hand on my belly for awhile and just enjoy it. Only 8 more weeks of this.

Best enjoy it while I can.


Wes said...

I need to speak with Chris. He has a knack for saying the bestest things at just the right time... :-)

blondeez said...

If you floated well to begin with and then gained ~40 lbs while pregnant, like I did, your butt would get cold from floating above the water line! But I guarantee struggling to keep your butt from sinking is better than being in the category of ladies who gained an obscene amount of weight despite eating better than before pregnancy.

As for your race plans, I say go for it with the caveat that if you have stitches they may be only barely healed by 4 weeks. I was hoping to do a sprint tri at 6 weeks post-partum and now that my baby is 5 weeks old I realize that was foolish. But by 8 or 10 weeks I think I'll be up to completing a sprint, and I was not in nearly as good shape as you are so you will probably recover faster.

Good luck with the heat! The last few weeks will feel like an eternity during each day but then you'll wonder where the month went.

meredith said...

i have yet to feel hiccups...mae mae loves kicking between 8-10pm.

Catching up with Jessica said...

I can never get enough of your blog...ever. I dread my third trimester as I live in Austin TX where I think it reaches 120 deg F and I''m not due til Oct! Agh!

Jenna said...

Jessica and ELF - Heat and Preganancy. Ug. I lived in Texas and was due in October and that heat made me swell up to wankles (waist, thigh, ankles). I would go from AC house to AC car to AC mall. Frick I hated how hard it became to lift my big, heavy body around doing the simpliest things. The heat made my blood feel like toothpaste being squeezed through tiny veins - my body was always screaming for more O2. Do what you can to stay comfortable. I will add that when I got really puffy - a 20 minute swim could move all that crap from my cankles and I could see ankles again. Not sure why that worked but it was so nice to ease that puffy feeling that I took to swimming several times a day in the condo pool just to move it all around and get some relief. I love the sotries of Chris being so agreeable - he knows that he is getting the long stick in this deal.... he will also learn how truly amazing you are when he sees you bring that baby into the world!! Good luck!

Katie said...

Ok, I know you're getting tons of advice but I can't help this one: if you can, get a video of your belly when Max is moving around and you can see it from the outside (are you at that point yet?) We got like a 20 sec video clip of this once at about 37ish weeks and I thought, "I see baby move all the time! This is a waste of time." But now I have actually watched it several times because I've forgotten how amazing that was to see!

Also, it is so sweet that Chris is nesting. He's going to be a great daddy! I think watching my husband become a dad was really cool.