In the interest of saving my sanity (and personal space) I have been working on having the two toddlers nap in the same room for the last few weeks. It had been going pretty well. They usually play for a half an hour or so, read each other books, and when I creepily tell them (through the monitor I am spying on them with) to turn off the lights and go to bed they listen. I do wonder what they think is happening when all the sudden my voice comes out of nowhere and I apparently can see everything they are doing.
Today something different happened. I put the kids down and they both yelled they needed to “go potty” 5 minutes later. Since we are encouraging potty training I went upstairs and brought them to the potty. One adult size poop (thankfully in the toilet!) from one child and pee from the other one and then they were back to bed… And immediately into the toys when I shut the door. I went downstairs with my monitor for some toddler TV, but then Catriona woke up and needed my attention. During that brief 5 minute period when I was taking care of Catriona the terrible twosome opened up a dresser drawer and found a forgotten tube of diaper cream from when they were babies. I got Catriona settled and then tuned back into toddler watching. Liam was sitting on the bed talking to The Bean. He appeared to be rubbing his belly which I though was a little odd, but the video was too grainy to see exactly what he was doing so I zoomed in. That’s when I saw it… There was a tube in his hand. I ran up the stairs with agility I did not know I still had and found Liam covered from head to toe in diaper cream. The nice thick white stuff with lots of zinc in it that barely comes off a babies bottom when you wash it. It was in his hair, on his arms, nicely coating his stomach and (Thank God) not anywhere near his mouth or eyes. The Bean had one little dollop on her dress, but otherwise was clean.
I grabbed Liam and the tube and rushed downstairs. My husband, who was lounging on the couch having recently returned home from the store, took one look at him and helped me get him stripped and in the tub. He washed the diaper cream off of Liams body with soap and a wash cloth while I stripped The Bean and took a baby wipe to clean off the minuscule (in comparison) spot on her arm. Liam started screaming. There is nothing the child hates in the world more than getting his hair washed and daddy was trying to really scrub out the diaper cream. We tried every shampoo, conditioner, and Internet remedy I could quickly find that we had supplies for in the house (which mostly centered around vinegar and lemon juice as we did not have any Dawn soap). Nothing worked. We just ended up making dread locks with his hair from all the scrubbing. So my husband hopped into his sandals and drove down to the nearest store to pick up a razor to cut his hair with. Once he returned we gave Liam his first buzz cut. He loves it. I want to cry for the loss of his hair. He now has less hair than what he was born with.
We have reached 36 weeks in this pregnancy and are slowly trudging our way towards 37! Catriona has spent the last few weeks stubbornly not growing (she ended up dropping 4 weeks of growth total prior to this weeks doctors appointment). So this week we did an ultrasound to check on her growth and the amniotic fluid levels. Thankfully everything came out well. She is estimated to be around 6 pounds 11 ounces at this point (which is amazing considering how small my bump is compared to when I was pregnant with Liam!) and while my amniotic fluid levels are on the lower end of normal they should be fine for the remainder of the pregnancy. Her head is down, the contractions are becoming more frequent, and we are playing a waiting game to meet her.
I continue to have (what has become) my normal migraines, tachycardia, and passing out. For the last week my symptoms have been somewhat relieved, I even had 3 good days in a row where I was able to be up and about without any chest or head pain, but for an added treat these last few days I have been enjoying some third trimester sickness (which is amazingly just like the first trimester was). I have a cardiology consult tomorrow and am hopeful to find some answers to what can be done for this chronic chest pressure, shoulder pain, and episodes of tachycardia. That said, I am very aware that any medication that could be given to relieve those symptoms for me has to wait until after Catriona’s arrival, so I am learning to live with it and take it easy when things really start to act up.
On Monday my sister-in-law came over to the house to take some maternity picture for us since we are currently unable to travel to the photographer that we used to do the maternity shoot we did when pregnant with Liam (Linden Photography in Central NH). I spent some time this morning playing around on Photoshop and touching up the lighting on the pictures. I am pretty happy with the results, and so thankful to Aunty Moonshine for taking them for us. Though this has been a difficult pregnancy we are planning on it being my last pregnancy and I want to be able to look back on this time and remember how it has helped us grow as a family later on. I wish I had enough Photoshop talent to reduce the (well-earned) shadows and bags under my eyes… you would think someone who spends as much time in bed as I have been lately wouldn’t have any but I can’t seem to sleep for more than two hours at a time thanks to our little girls efforts to escape the womb.
We continue to be grateful for everyone’s prayers and well wishes. The support of our family and friends has truly have been an amazing help in us pulling through this pregnancy!
Well, it has been a rough couple of weeks for me. As it turns out, I am REALLY bad about taking it easy without constantly giving myself reminders. My husband has become a professional at telling me not to do things I am not supposed to do, and reminding me to stop and take breaks. I have become crabby, which is not a usual thing for me and I don’t like it. The kids, well, they have really taken to the encouraged independence. Liam and The Bean now put themselves to bed at nap and bedtime. I am trying to not miss the snuggles I use to steal when carrying them upstairs too much.
For Catriona things are going well, or at least as good as we can hope for! We had a very positive checkup at 23 weeks where she measured exactly on target (which is amazing for a little girl who is most likely going to be tiny!) and her heart rate was a lovely 145. Her kick counts have been perfect. The only concerning thing that has come up recently have been frequent Braxton Hicks contractions. Thankfully they are not following any pattern at this point and have only been over the 6 an hour allowed at this stage of pregnancy a handful of times. At the 23 week appointment they found an infection so I am hopeful that after a week of antibiotics things will calm down in the contraction department. Our next ultrasound is at 27 weeks and I am still hoping for a miracle! At this point, however, I am simply thankful to have made it this far.
At 23-24 weeks babies begin making a substance called surfactant. This is used by the body to help stabilize the alveoli in the lungs (The alveoli help oxygen get from the air to the bloodstream, but in order to do this they need to be nice and plump like a grape, surfactants help keep them from collapsing when you exhale). With the production of surfactant comes the chance for survival with pre-term births, so if something were to happen tonight Catriona would have a fighting chance, especially with the awesome hospitals in this area. 24 weeks was a big milestone for us. I celebrated with a braided chicken pot pie bread with Ben and Jerry’s ice cream for dessert 🙂
On a personal note, because I am carrying so low this time (thanks to the less than stable environment my body created for Catriona) life is becoming uncomfortable. There are definitely times where it already feels like the last (everlasting) month of pregnancy. clothing is also becoming uncomfortable. Maternity pants with the cloth panel fall off of me because my belly isn’t quite large enough for them, but the ones with the low band are too tight for me to wear and do essential things like breathe, or not walk like a penguin. My go to pants of choice for this pregnancy are becoming yoga pants. I could sing a song for how much I love them lately. I see a lot of dresses coming up in my future as well. The plus side? My maternity scrubs are the most comfortable articles of clothing ever (even if one pocket does oddly fall right on the center of my expanding stomach).