September 29, 2008

Another appointment

I went in today for another NST (Non-stress test) and to see Dr. Keith for my 36 week appointment (1 of 2). Everything was OK, my blood pressure was up a little from last week but still not too bad and my weight and proteins were all the same. Baby H was nice and very reactive during the NST which was great since he was sleeping through the last one. I always have this moment, however, when they're hooking me up to the machine, where I get terrified they won't find a heartbeat. Today I was sweating bullets because it took a while for the nurse to get a good signal, but my mind was put at ease as soon as I heard him chug-chugging away! I'm still having a few contractions, mainly when I'm up moving around, but everything seems to be much calmer since I've been resting more.

Before I left, we briefly talked again about delivery and Dr. Keith said that if I don't go into labor on my own, we will induce or schedule a c-section once I reach 38.5-39 weeks! A general time frame would be somewhere around October 15-21. We went ahead and scheduled 5 more visits, with the last one on Oct 17th and she said that should probably be my final prenatal visit! I've got 2 more ultrasounds scheduled, this Thursday and next Friday, to keep evaluating baby's growth and weight to determine which delivery route we'll need to take. There are no apparent problems at this point which might prevent a vaginal delivery, so it's all going to depend on how much this little guy grows in the next 2-3 weeks!!

September 28, 2008

Lucy turns 1!

Our little puppy is a puppy no more! On Saturday we celebrated Lucy's 1st birthday, our little girl is growing up so fast!! For Lucy's birthday, bedrest took the back seat and we made a special trip to PetSmart to celebrate the big day. Lucy loves to take rides and stick her head out the window and she loves going to PetSmart and meeting other dogs and getting tons of attention from the staff and customers. She also loves it when Mommy and Daddy spoil her with lots of new treats and toys!! That evening we even stopped by Sonic on the way to visit Grandma Jo Ann and indulged Lucy with a yummy cheeseburger for dinner. Below are some pictures of Lucy over the past year, with the last one taken just 2 days ago. Of course I couldn't leave out the kitties, Jack and Dakota!





September 27, 2008

Like father, like son






Well it's 6am and I'm up again due to this crazy indigestion that loves to hit me around this time in the morning. However, I was excited when I got up and checked my e-mail to see that Ryan's Aunt Brenda (aka Nana) had flooded my e-mail with some of his baby pictures she had on her computer from the day Ryan was born! I couldn't help but compare them to our 4D ultrasound pictures from a few weeks ago and already the resemblance is amazing!! What do you think?



September 26, 2008

*Baby Star*

My friend, Stefania, and I went to a great seminar hosted by the Greenville Hospital System just for pregnant women a few weeks ago. Among all our free goodies I found a coupon to a website called Baby Star and decided to check it out. I immediately fell in love with their cute designs and great products. I also love the fact that what they sell is 100% cotton and formaldahyde free, so it's safe for baby and the environment! Right now they have an amazing grab bag sale going on where their moderately priced products can be purchased for up to 70% off!! If anyone out there reading is expecting or knows someone who is, take a look at http://www.babystar.com/ and check out their products!! For a listing of their sale items, click on the big green box that says 'Customer Appreciation + Sample Sale!' I especially love their Kimono outfit and have already bought one for baby H!

September 25, 2008

Clemson vs. SC State Game






Last Saturday we went to the Clemson v. SC State game. Ryan traded in our usual tickets and we upgraded to seats in the luxurious West EndZone Suites! Doug, an attorney at Ryan's firm, and his wife, Angela, also joined us for their very first Clemson game experience. The game was a blowout and got boring fast, so me and Angela began watching the SC State band & dance team which was sitting right below us. Little to say, they provided us with tons of amusement and we throughly enjoyed watching them. I think SC State is one of those rare schools where people come to games to watch the band instead of the football team!

Another Appointment Update

Today I had another appointment and will now being having them twice weekly on Mondays and Thursdays. I actually lost 3 lbs. since my Monday appointment which was weird, but Dr. Keith wasn't too concerned. My blood pressure has actually gone down to a normal level which was great news and hopefully means that this bed rest is actually helping! They hooked me up to the monitor again and monitored me and baby H for about 30 minutes. It showed I was having a few small contractions, but nothing like what we saw on Monday. Baby H is still chugging along and his heartbeat was about 150bpm and he was stable and reactive. I also got the results from my 24 hr. urine and Group Strep B test back and everything was fine and normal.

Overall, Dr. Keith was very pleased with this visit and it really eased my mind as well. However, I am still ordered to stay on modified bedrest and will probably remain so until Baby H arrives just in case something I was doing has been causing my problems.

Since Ryan was with me at this visit, we briefly talked about the delivery and what to expect. I asked Dr. Keith at what point would she suggest a c-section and she said that they normally don't suggest that route unless the baby is over 9 lbs. or there are other complications, but with me being so petite she might lower that number in my case. However, she said as long as he's not too big and there are no other problems, she would possibly let me try to have him vaginally and then if things weren't working out we would be prepared for an emergency cesarean.

Of course Ryan has been dying to get a better idea of when baby H will get here and asked some questions about what kind of time frame we should expect. Like she told me last week, Dr. Keith hopes I will go into labor on my own as soon as possible and does think it's a likely scenario. However, should I make it to 39 weeks, we would immediately talk about inducing or a possible c-section depending on baby's predicted weight. The good news is, while they aren't going to move my due date up, she said they will almost certainly deliver me before 40 weeks. I'm just glad to know that at the maximum, I'll get to see his sweet little face in less than 4 weeks!!!

Finally, I have another NST (fetal monitoring) scheduled for Monday at 3pm and another ultrasound next Thursday. I can't wait for Thursday to see how much this little guy has grown!

September 24, 2008

Breastmilk ice cream?!?

Now, although I am not a vegetarian, I am against cruelty to animals and, for the most part, respect PETA and their efforts. However, I think they're taking this a little too far!

Click this link to read about PETA's suggestion that Ben & Jerry's begin using human breast milk to make their ice cream. Would you eat ice cream made from breast milk???
http://blog.peta.org/archives/2008/09/breast_is_best.php

Stuck in an elevator!

Ryan just called from the office and told me that he went downstairs to grab a quick lunch and on his way back up to the 16th floor, the elevator got stuck in between the floors! He was stuck on the elevator with 2 other attorneys from his firm and 2 woman for over an hour. When I asked him what they all talked about for that hour while they were stuck, he said "We talked about how we all wanted off the damn elevator!" :)

Quick clarification on the bedrest...

I just wanted to quickly clarify that my doctor has only ordered I be on modified bedrest as I stated in my last appointment update. Modified bedrest simply means that I can't be up exercising, vacuuming or doing other strenuous house chores, out shopping, gardening, rearranging furniture, or doing any really unnecessary moving about. It's basically just a precautionary measure, and the point is simply to keep the swelling down by limiting time on my feet and to keep me calm and relaxed so my blood pressure doesn't get to an unhealthy level.

Several very kind people have gotten worried and have offered to come bring food or help clean my house and keep me company, and while I really do appreciate all the kind suggestions, I'm still pretty self-sufficient. Of course, visitors are always welcome to stop by or call since I've had limited social interaction here lately. :)

Overall, it's not too bad, just makes the days go by a little slower and makes some of my nesting instincts take the back seat for awhile. At least I've been given the go ahead to do a little more on the weekends while Ryan is here with me and I have a feeling I'm really going to be looking forward to these next few weekends!!!!!

Pregnancy perk

Well it's about 5am and I've been wide awake for over an hour now due to that lovely pregnancy "perk" they call acid indigestion. This is something I've never experienced until just a few days ago and is apparently common in pregnancy due to slowed digestion and hormones. For those of you out there who commonly suffer from this condition, boy do I feel sorry for you! What a totally yucky and uncomfortable feeling. Of course, lying down makes it even worse, so it looks like I'm going to have an early start to my exciting day!!

September 23, 2008

Jennifer & Ryan, Our journey in pictures














We met: 5/3/04
Went on our 1st date: 5/11/04
Fell in love: 8/22/04
Got engaged: 7/3/06
Said "I do": 8/11/07
Found out we were expecting: 2/13/08
Had our baby boy: ??/??/08

The blahs...

It's only been about 24 hours since I was ordered to bedrest and I'm already sick of it!! It's given me a major case of "the blah's" today. Since I'm not supposed to do many things around the house, of course it makes me want to do them even more now that I can't! Just yesterday I had no desire to sweep and mop the floors, but today I can't stop staring at them and getting annoyed with how filthy they are getting....even though I just cleaned them a few days ago. I also have this extreme urge to do laundry (something I usually hate with a passion). I'm sure Ryan would do many of these things if I asked him, but he's so busy and works so hard all day that I feel terrible asking him to do house chores when he finally gets home and has a chance to relax.

Lucy doesn't seem to understand the whole bedrest thing either. I still get up and let her outside a few times a day, but I just haven't been able to play with her the way I usually would. I did sit on the deck and throw the ball in the yard for her this morning to consume some of her energy...but that didn't tire her out for long! I wish everyday I had 1/4 of the energy she has!!

I do have some good news to share and was happy to hear that Jo Ann's surgery went well and was really quick! Ryan finally called me at 11am to tell me that they were on their way back and everything had gone fine. However, she will have to use a walker for the next 6 weeks or so since she had the surgery on her feet but although very annoying, I'm sure it will have been a small price to pay to be up and walking around better than ever once the recovery period is over!

September 22, 2008

In case anyone wants to change their guess...

Prayer Request

My mother-in-law, Jo Ann, is having surgery tomorrow and I was supposed to take her to the hospital in the morning so I could make sure she was alright and be there when she got out. Unfortunately, I was put on bed rest today and my overprotective husband won't let me drive to Laurens to sit in the hospital tomorrow and wait for her to get out. Please pray that her surgery goes well, is quick and that the doctors are able to fix the problems she's having. I know I will be sitting by the phone at home waiting to hear the news that she's fine and ready to come home. Baby H will also be relieved to hear that Grandma Jo Ann is out of surgery and doing fine!!

Appointment update & news!!

I went to see Dr. Keith today and things got a little interesting! The first thing the Dr. commented on was that she noticed significant swelling in my ankles, hands and face which she hasn't really seen before. She also mentioned that I had some protein in my urine and my blood pressure was still elevated. She said that this is classic pregnancy induced hypertension and is somewhat common in first time pregnancies, especially in those with family histories of the problem (my mom had this as well).

Since the doctor was a little concerned about me and baby and the onset of the hypertension, she took me to a room where they hooked me to a fetal monitor for about 30 minutes to get a good look at baby's hearbeat and make sure he was stable and doing OK. Baby H had a strong and steady heartbeat at around 148 bpm, but much to our surprise, the fetal monitor, which was also monitoring me, showed that I was actually having several contractions and wasn't realizing it. I had been feeling my belly tighten up a bit, but thought it was just baby H rolling around in there.

Earlier in the visit Dr. Keith measured my belly and I was on the big side, measuring at 37 weeks. With the onset of hypertension and my contractions, Dr. Keith began to get worried that this baby may come a bit earlier than we have anticipated! She immediately scheduled me for an ultrasound so that she could get a better estimate of just how big baby H is and to make sure he isn't getting too big for me to be able to push out should he come sooner than later.

I had my ultrasound at around noon today and baby measured around 36/37 weeks and they estimate his weight to be about 6 pounds! Dr. Keith said he is in the 70% percentile but still not too big to be a concern to me just yet. Whew!! Unfortunately, he is so big and his head is so low that we were unable to get a good picture of him, but I did see his big round belly and little beating heart.

After my ultrasound I had a sit down with my doctor and she explained that not only does it look like baby H will be will bere before my due date, but she hopes that he will be here as soon as possible seeing as how I'm starting to have some complications. She said that should I go into labor anytime after today, they would not try to stop me and let things progress as normal. Right now I've got the OK for a vaginal delivery, but I've got visits scheduled twice a week from here on out to keep a close eye on the little guy and myself. Should he get too big or my condition worsen, we may talk about an early induction or a possible c-section.

Finally, Dr. Keith said that with the onset of the hypertension, she is ordering me to be on modified bedrest from here on out. No shopping, exercise, heavy lifting, laundry, cleaning or moving about too much. She said that I've got the OK to do a little more on the weekends, but only under supervision and just a little bit at a time. Luckily it's only modified bed rest so I don't have to be confined to my bed all day long, I can still move around as necessary but it will be limited.

Well, this was certainly a lot to take in and learn in one visit, but while I'm feeling a bit nervous and anxious with all the new information, I'm starting to get pretty excited that baby H may be here before we know it!!! I think Ryan is a little freaked out however, and I don't blame him. He went from thinking we had a solid month or so before baby arrived to being told that things could happen at anytime and would likely be sooner than later. Luckily, I think my motherly instincts kicked in a little and last week I went ahead and washed all of baby's newborn clothes, blankets, towels, washcloths, sheets and other necessities and set up his corner in our bedroom with the pack 'n play and changing table that Grandma & Grandpa Banks bought him. He's even got a stockpile of diapers and wipes ready and waiting. Now we just need to unpack the carseat that Grandma & Grandpa Banks also gave us and get it installed and ready for the trip home from the hospital!!!

September 16, 2008

Rainy Tuesday...

My appointment was cancelled today because my doctor's child is sick, which suits me just fine since the weather is pretty nasty outside and I'd rather stay in and relax anyway. So, I decided instead to update the blog a little after seeing how great my friend Kristy's looks! What do you think of my new layout?

September 10, 2008

Appointment Update - 9/9

Yesterday I had another doctor's appointment, I pretty much go every Tuesday now in the early afternoon. Baby's heartbeat was 140 bpm and I'm measuring 33.5 weeks...right on target! Luckily my blood pressure has gone down a little, but is still not back to normal. Unfortunately I gained 3 lbs. since my last visit though which caused my doctor some concern since my weight gain has been really steady up until now. Sudden weight gain is also another symptom of Preeclampsia and is usually caused by all the extra fluid due to swelling. So, next Tuesday I'll be having more blood work done to check again for any signs something could be wrong. We're still keeping our fingers crossed that everything is fine and I'm really watching what I eat this week to make sure that's not what's causing the sudden jump in weight!!

In other news, I've been having a few painful contractions but nothing steady. They're called Braxton-Hicks contractions and are basically just your body's way of preparing for childbirth. I've been having them for several weeks now but they have just recently been coming about every day and have been much more painful than the earlier ones. I've also been having a lot of pressure on my pubic bone which has been causing a lot of discomfort and making it hard to stand and walk around a lot. When I told Dr. Keith this she was a little alarmed that I'm having so much pressure this early and attributes it to my petite size. She said that she is getting a bit worried that I may not be able to vaginally deliver this little guy much to my dismay. Eventhough he is measuring right on schedule, my small size could cause some complications and we'll probably end up having another ultrasound in a few weeks to see just how big he's gotten and access the situation then. Of course I'm still hoping for a vaginal delivery, but will do whatever is best for me and baby Harris. It's much better to have a planned c-section than an emergency one after you've been pushing for 2 hours with no progress and have exhausted yourself to no end. My dear friend Keri knows that feeling all too well!!

Clemson Games

I've been bad about updates lately, so I'm going to try and catch up with a few things today! Two weekends ago Ryan and I made the trip to Atlanta to watch the Clemson vs. Alabama game. The actual game was quite disappointing, but we still had a nice time in Atlanta for the weekend regardless of all the gloating Bama fans. To ease the pain a bit we spent Sunday afternoon in Commerce doing some outlet shopping. Ryan got a nice work wardrobe from his new favorite store Brooks Brothers and I racked up on baby stuff at the Carter's outlet. Here are some pictures from the game and a picture of us before the game while we were still smiling! :) BTW, I'm 32 weeks pregnant here and getting bigger by the minute if you can't tell!






Last weekend was the Clemson vs. Citadel game and our first home game of the season. We got there around 12:30 and tailgated for awhile. Luckily Ryan brought a fan and I parked my tail in a chair with the fan pointed my way and there I sat for the first part of the afternoon!:) The actual game was fun but very very hot! Ryan was so worried about me that he got up about every half hour to get me water and made sure I drank it all. He also got us some Dippin Dots which were delicious and a treat I probably hadn't had in years! The game was good and a lot more fun since we were winning the whole time. We also really enjoyed our new season tickets right on the lower 40 yard line! Here are a few pictures from that game. It was Military Appreciation Day.

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