Dear Wheelie 35 weeks 3 days

Dear Wheels

I get to meet you in about 5 hours.

I’m developing a condition called pre-eclampsia and after three days of debating whether you’d be better off in or out, and how much longer we can/should push the pregnancy…today my rising bp and onset of secondary symptoms made the decision easy.

I can’t wait to see you…I hope you’re as healthy as you’ve indicated on the ultrasounds…you’re a little undercooked, kiddo.



Posted in Letters to Wheelie

Still Pregnant and why I loved my induction

It’s kissing up on midnight so I can safely say that I’m confident I’ll make 35 weeks.  Now the goal is 36.  One week at a time, right?

Most people I know consider induction the “i” word. (maybe it’s tied with “intervention” but for many the two are inextricably linked).

Having had the random labor pains I’ve been having for a week now, I have to say that I am super grateful for the induction.  I got the cytotec to soften my cervix, a shower, and then onto the pitocin (and soon after the epidural I’d been planning to get for longer than I’d been planning to have kids).  I never spent hours randomly crying out and doubling over in pain.  I’ve since had that joy and I’m kind of wishing I could just repeat my induction experience again–drugs, epidural, some pain but nothing on this scale, baby.

We have hit a point where if I go into labor on my own, even with the bedrest and such..I’ll just have the baby.  But the problem with the sort of labor pains I’ve had is that they don’t mean anything–could have a baby tomorrow, could be 4 weeks and the planned induction.   Which is also frustrating because I’m the planning girl.  I just want to KNOW.

I don’t think Wheelie has engaged fully though because if anything my heartburn has gotten worse in the last week (which could also be a function of the amount of time I’m spending horizontal) even with zantac and other meds.  The highlight of which was last night’s vomit-a-thon in the shower, covering myself in puke and clogging the drain.  Which may in fact be one of the most humiliating experiences of my life to date.

I’m mostly documenting this so that in the event that I’m ever stupid enough to consider pregnancy again, I can be reminded in exquisite detail exactly how NOT FUN pregnancy is.

Posted in Pregnancy


I was released late last night (after I whined a great deal about how I couldn’t sleep in the hospital and hadn’t had a contraction in over 24 hours) and have been catching up on sleep at home in my comfy bed.

It’s still boring, but I much prefer being bored at home, don’t you?

Bed rest countdown 18 days left (not counting today)

Posted in Pregnancy


So, still in hospital, but the labor has been stopped for a long time and I’m off the continuous monitoring and in a regular room.

With luck I get to go home tomorrow morning.  I’m ore than ready.

Posted in Pregnancy

When Wheelie got competitive Dear Wheelie 34 weeks

Dear Wheelie

I realize that you have gotten the proverbial short end of the stick lately.  It’s been all Ellie all the time, and you haven’t gotten weekly letters or even much in the way of blog posts.

I’m sorry.  I suck.  Being the second kid can suck sometimes.

But here’s the thing.  Labor?  Really?

You felt that sending me into labor was the only way to get your fair share of attention?  Because really, honey, there are other ways to make yourself known.  The kicking got my attention.  Did you not notice all the baby clothes sorting and cooing I’ve been doing?  All the new stuff just for you?  How we may have actually picked your name?

So posting has been light here.  Between the hyperesis (puking…great weight loss plan, if only I weren’t supposed to be gaining weight instead of losing it right now), and the trip back to the US, and my generally feeling crappy in the two weeks since we got back, this blog has been really neglected.

Doesn’t mean I don’t care, or am not thinking about you, honey.

At 34 weeks exactly you are growing strong and healthy.  You look to be kissing up on 6 lbs (which kind of freaks me out as your sister was only 6lbs 11 oz at 39 weeks and she hurt like hell on the way out) so I don’t know how big you’ll get before you come out.  All those teeny little newborn clothes may be a waste…but an adorable one wear out of them waste?

You have some serious acrobatic moves going on…or a solid karate kata.  Either way, I *do* notice you.

I’m finally looking pregnant, which is a nice change.  I’ve been craving papadam (spicy indian cracker made of lentils and pepper) fried, and green grapes.  And hawaiian punch.

You’ve been giving us some cause for concern.  At 33 weeks, your fluid levels were an 8, which is the bare minimum acceptable.  I also had trace amounts of protein in my urine, which put us on alert for pre-e.  Plus lots of braxton hicks contractions, for which I got progesterone.

Today (34 weeks) my fluid had gone back to 9 (improvement…not as much as I’d like, but I’ll take it) and no proteins.  Except, well….I was in real honest to god labor.  So that got us a one way ticket to labor and delivery to try and stop the labor and to give me the steroid shot.  It’s been almost 7 hours, and we’ve got another 41 to go….it’s like a really long boring plane ride, except every time I need to pee, I need to get unhooked from machines and beg the nice nurses not to make me use the bed pan.  And while on most flights I’d kill to lay down, right now I’m just bored.  Thank god for  the internet, even if I did spend too much time researching “premature, 34 weeks” today.

Seriously, kid…I’ll give you all the attention you want.  Just stay the fuck inside my uterus for 3 more weeks.

Posted in Letters to Wheelie, Medical, Pregnancy

Dear Wheelie–26 weeks

Dear Wheelie

I know that the stereotype is that the second child often has less individualized attention, etc than the first child, but I do feel bad that it’s been 11 weeks since I wrote you a letter.

First things first…you are still, several ultrasounds later, a girl.  I will confess to being surprised to have a wrong hunch (and who knows why since I thought your sister was a boy, too and was wrong, too), and that I needed a few days to adjust to the idea of having another girl.  However, at various points in the pregnancy prior to learning your sex, I had strongly wanted a second girl (as I’m a girl I feel more equipped to deal with girls, and already having a girl also makes me feel a little less lost on this whole parenting thing).  To be completely candid…my wanting a boy had a lot more to do with wanting to buy a completely new wardrobe for the baby, whereas you’ll end up in a lot of hand me downs (sorry, I shopped like a maniac for your sister, and your dad is grumpy at the number of things E has that she wore 1-2 times only–on the other hand, when we move back to the US, you’ll need entirely new clothes to deal with seasons your sister never did, so eventually it will all even out, I promise).

We did a number of additional test on you to make sure you were healthy.  No need to go into the name of each of them, but you passed every single assessment with flying colors.  You look completely healthy, you’re growing exactly on the curve for your gestational age (with diabetics, too big is the worry, and of course too small is also always a concern).  As of a few days ago, you were estimated to weigh about 1 kilo or 2lbs 2oz.  You have moved into a head down position (which explains the sudden onset of hearburn and the changed placement of your kicks), and the placenta is in a good position.

In other words, we are ready to get down to business in about 12 weeks.  Currently your birthday is going to be Nov 4th or Nov 8th.  Your sister is November 3rd…I’m sorry.  I’ll do my best to avoid you two sharing a birthday, but I can’t make a ton of promises.  I’m at risk for a few scary-ish conditions that may mean an earlier b-day, but let’s keep our fingers crossed to get to Nov 4/8th.

I am eager for this pregnancy to be over (but not so eager that I want you arriving early, little girl!).  It has been in many ways, a much rougher pregnancy that your elder sister’s was.  By this point in her pregnancy, my medication regimen was working and I mostly felt fine (at least until the third trimester exhaustion and hip pain kicked in).  With yours, the nausea and vomiting have been significantly worse, and have required more medical intervention.  All I care about though, is that you’ve remained healthy, which you have.

The very ironic punch line to all this vomiting and nausea is that unlike with Elanor’s pregnancy, yours has been awesome with regards to my diabetes.  I haven’t needed insulin in months.  Everyone is kind of baffled by this, but since my numbers all look good, we’re all just kind of going with it.

I first began to feel you kick around 18 weeks…a small bit of movement here or there.  I was about 20 weeks when I could predictably feel you on a daily basis.  Your dad first felt you kick at 23 weeks and your sister at 24.  You’ve been a very active baby–you object to my laptop’s imposition on my lap, you object to your sister sitting on me, eating makes me nauseous and makes you dance.  You are often very active around 2/3 am, which I hope is an early sign that you have inherited the family predilection towards being a night owl.

Your ya-ya and I moved the crib into your Dad and my room a few days ago.  I haven’t put the mobile together, and we need to wash the sheets (and I need a metric ton of batteries) but we are just about ready for you.  I also got the old bucket seat (hopefully we’ll be able to bring the new one home), the car seat, the swing, the bouncy seat and the pack n play out and ready to go (minus the 8 zillion batteries).  I have a ton of clothes for you in the US (as well as some hand me downs from your sister) that I’ll bring back home, and then we should be ready for you with a few weeks to spare.

We don’t have a name for you, yet.  I had a name I really loved that your dad didn’t like much, and he has a name that I’m not wild about as a first name.  We both keep looking at the list and wonder if maybe we shouldn’t just let the three year old name you.  You wouldn’t mind growing up with a name like Elmo, right?  What could possibly go wrong?  Don’t worry, I promise you that you won’t end up with the name of a Disney Princess, no matter how much your sister loves Ariel.

The OB tried to get a 3D picture of your face a few days ago, but you kept putting your hands up in front of it, as if to say “Mooooom!  Get out of my roooooom!  Leave me ALONE!”

I’m so excited to meet you, sweetie.  You are already a special and unique child, and your Daddy and I (and your big sister) are all so excited to meet you.

In fact, when I got some IV fluid therapy a few weeks ago, your sister and ya-ya came to get me, and Ellie walked in and asked where you were.  She was less than thrilled to hear you were still growing in my uterus.

Keep doing what you’re doing–growing strong and healthy.

I love you so much, munchkin.




Posted in Letters to Wheelie

Where I’ve been

Sorry it’s been so long since I’ve posted here.  It’s been all I could manage to keep Expat Bostonians up and running.  I also can only write so many posts about vomiting, and that’s pretty much been my life since April/May.  And I have this other kid who wants attention.

What’s been up?

1-My breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Hyperemsis Gravida.  It’s fun.  I’ve also almost completely exhausted all my medical options, and am facing hospitalization if things get worse…or at the very least regular IV therapy.  I’ve yet to gain an ounce with this damn pregnancy, and it is a total mind-fuck to realize I’ve spent literally thousands of dollars trying to not lose weight/minimize my weight loss when not pregnant it would be good for me to drop 50+ lbs.  I am, for the record, something like 8-10 pounds lighter than I was 25 1/2 weeks ago.  I am not happy about this.

2-Wheels is closing in on a name.  Or, at least, we are down to 11 potential names.  No clue.  We have no consensus, no favored name, nothing.  But by process of elimination I think we’ll get there, and babygirl will not actually end up being what we put on her passport.

3-Ellie is getting her neuropsychological development in September.  This is the final hurdle to her leaving the regular care of the pediatric stroke team.  Big cheers all around.

4-Ellie continues to blossom at school.  Most recently she was able to correctly count pick 3 items out of group of 6 when asked to do so with no support from her teachers.  I’m ridiculously proud of this.

5-Wheelie is growing just fine and thriving, despite my inability to take in any sort of nutrition.

6-My diabetes is totally controlled without medication at the moment. That I can’t keep food down is more than a contributing factor.  Would much rather be giving myself regular injections and keeping food down and gaining.  Although, a major highlight of my pregnant/adult life was the moment my endocrinologist looked at me and called me “underweight.”

7-We are heading home for a short trip between my 28th and 32nd week of pregnancy.  Once I hit 32 weeks I’m not allowed to leave Singapore.  There is much Target and BRU in my future.

8-I am SO MUCH more laid back with this pregnancy.  Part of it is that I just don’t have the energy to be neurotic, and part of it is that I know that all the books in the world will not actually tell me what to do with Wheelie once she’s here.  Her personality will drive our parenting style.  Elanor’s reactions will help steer the boat of sibling relationships.  I’ll breastfeed, or I won’t.  It will be okay.  Wheelie will be okay.  It’s a huge change from the last time.

9-Perhaps I should call this 8B.  While I’m more laid back about the pregnancy, I’m also just so worn out.  This pregnancy has been so much worse than Elanor’s in terms of the nausea, motion sickness and vomiting.  My spirits are often quite low.  I am far more stressed out about how the pregnancy is affecting E’s life.  She gets far less time with me, I almost never leave the house, and what time we do have is generally spent in bed watching Disney cartoon because it’s all I have the energy for.  I will be SO happy when Wheelie is born.  I absolutely hate pregnancy.

10–here’s a picture of me, the older daughter, and the bump.

Posted in Breastfeeding, Depression, Education, Elanor, General stuff, Medical, Non-Procreational Life, Parenting Theories, Pictures, Pregnancy, Siblings