Labor & delivery

My doula took notes (bolded), which I thought made a good outline of the entire process.

March 24, 2016

4:00 a.m. water broke
I woke up to use the bathroom during the 2AM hour. I could still smell the herbal scent of the shampoo that the salon had used yesterday when I cut and blow-dried my hair. I was in a dim half-asleep, half-awake state an hour later when I felt a warm trickle between my legs. My first thought was that half-asleep, I’d lost control of my bladder. But then it kept coming and I snapped wide awake. I stumbled down the stairs and went to the bathroom as more trickled down my thighs. I sat on the toilet and more came. I checked the water–it was colorless. I grabbed a towel as I went back up the stairs and laid it down on the bed.
I woke up Carter–“I think my water broke.” It only took a few seconds for him to be wide awake. I asked him for more towels to tuck under me. I called the nurse line at my practice and a nurse called, and said that it did sound like my waters broke. They advised I go to the hospital within two hours since I was positive for Group B Strep.
4:30 called J, recommended resting, eating, etc…
 I called my doula after that; instead, she advised that we go back to bed, eat a big breakfast, and then go to the hospital at 9 in the morning.
I couldn’t sleep, but I could hear Carter snoring. I kept thinking–my life was going to change. Everything was going to change.
7:00 we talked about slowly getting ready to go to AB
I got up a little before 7 and went downstairs to call the doula again. We got up in a leisurely way. We ate breakfast sandwiches and smoothies and fruit, and took Beast out for a walk along Ohlone Greenway. The day was full of sunshine and blue skies.
11:00 at hosptial, admitted to L & D rm #15
We arrived at the hospital. I heard a nurse say to another nurse that my bag of waters had been “grossly ruptured” outside the curtain. I piddled more amniotic fluid on the table while we waited. They put me in a wheelchair and took me to our room, where we settled in; they moved me briefly to another L&D room where a pigeon was nesting on the windowsill outside before taking me back. I called the doula, who advised me to take them up on their offer of inducing labor rather than sitting and waiting to go into labor naturally, since I’d said I wanted a epidural anyway.
The entire time I sat there on the bed on a puppy pad, leaking here and there. I went into the hallway to walk, and made a mess on the floor. Oops. I got my first bag of antibiotics (the first of four).
12:45 first dose of miso, contractions starting after the miso
It was a tiny half pill of misoprostol but I could feel the contractions ramping not long after that. Labor started in earnest. Carter went to Tai San to grab lunch–I got garlic green beans and ate between contractions.
3:30 J came to AB, we walked the halls, etc….ctx had slowed down a bit so we agreed to check in later
The doula did some light acupressure, but the contractions began to taper off. Around 4PM, I got another half pill of misoprostol. The contractions were more intense this time, and showed no signs of slowing down. Carter brought a chicken burrito from Whole Foods and a smoothie; I ate part of it, along with some tasteless veggie soup. It was harder to eat this time between contractions.
9:45 phone check in, Carter going home to sleep, all still quiet
I sent Carter home to get some rest, since it seemed like I’d just be in labor for hours and hours yet. Not that anyone knew, since the doctors didn’t want to do cervical checks on a woman whose waters had broken. Still, I wanted one of us to get some rest, and sleep didn’t seem like a likely prospect for me. I mindlessly watched a nature documentary about Indochina and flopped back and forth in my bed on my amniotic fluid-soaked puppy pads.
11:45 B called J, asked for meds at hospital but it’s taking them a long time, she asks me to come in to give support to her.
The contractions got worse. The nurse has gone AWOL with my pain medication. When I managed to hobble to the bathroom, I saw more and more blood. I call my doula and ask her to come. Frankly, I just wanted someone to chase down the nurse and get me my drugs.
12 a.m., I arrive, labor seems more active, B quiet, focused, inward.  Doing really well breathing.  Lots of bloody show.
I don’t remember much about the pain, but the breathing was in through the nose, out through the mouth. The doula put her hand on my shoulder and reminded me to relax my face and neck and shoulders.
12:15 nurse gives dose of nubbin, in your IV and also a shot in the leg.  
I have no idea what that painkiller was, but it didn’t do a thing for me.
12:30 nurse shift, new nurse, Zoe.  B in bed, lying on her side, trying to rest.
Zoe was the coolest. She had purple hair and a Vonnegut tattoo–so it goes.
1:30 we talk about epidural, nurse calls Dr. T who thinks it’s probably too early but says she’ll come check her cervix.
The doctor was a little patronizing. I asked for the epidural and the doctor said something to the effect of well you may be in this same state this time tomorrow, so…
2:00 Dr T comes in, recommends morphine to sleep because she thinks it’s still too early for epidural.  I tell her I’ve been watching this labor since yesterday and a lot has changed, so she checks and B is 6 cm!!
The doctor finally, reluctantly, laid the responsibility on me for choosing to do a cervical exam. Lo and behold, I’m ready for the epidural.
2:05 nurse gives a dose of fentanyl
I ask for ALL THE DRUGS.
2:10 Dr. S comes in to do the epidural
The anesthesiologist was mellow. He remarked that the mood in my room was so calm, having apparently come from a room where there was a lot more screaming. I never screamed during delivery. I had thought about a few choice swear words in advance that I could use while in labor, but when I tried them in labor it didn’t do a thing for me. Screaming–meh. Groaning–I didn’t really make much noise. Doula said I made some faces and that I “focused inwards.”
2:30 epidural in, B lying down resting
The insertion of the epidural was painless and the effect was immediate. It felt like I had some buzzing in my legs and thighs and feet, but could still move my legs around with some effort.
3:30 begins to feel rectal pressure
I ask Zoe the nurse what I should do if I need to poo, since I couldn’t walk anymore due to the walk. She said bluntly that what I was feeling was probably the baby’s head. She asked if it felt like I had to poo all the time, or if it was only with contractions. It was only the latter. The doula patted my shoulder and told me that it was a good sign.
4:50 B saying she feels like she needs to poop, nurse does cervical check, 10 cm! and baby super low (+2/+3 station).  I called Carter and told him to come back to AB.
5:10 Dr T stopped in, says she’ll be back in a few minutes.  Zoe set up the bed and got the room ready.  
Carter arrived, a little shocked at how far along I was (and appalled that I hadn’t called sooner). This was a blur. I wanted to push so badly. It was hard holding the baby in for Carter and the doctor to arrive. The doctor, again, didn’t seem to believe that I was ready to push. Zoe asked me to do a practice push while we waited. She told me that the push I did was more of a kegels and asked me to try again. The baby moved down slightly with the push–the nurse could easily feel her head!
5:20 Dr T returns, B starts pushing at 5:23
The overhead lights switch on, focusing on my business. Probably the only time in my life when my ladyzone will get spotlighted. Everyone gathered around the bed, two people grasp a leg each. I push about three times per contraction for a total of 10 pushes.
5:32 baby girl!!
Nine minutes later, I could feel the head stretching me–the ring of fire, if the ring of fire was just a sensation of pressure. All I can hear is encouragement from the nurses and my doula. You’re doing so good! The baby slid out in a slippery rush, like she’d come out on a wave of liquid. I glimpse a bawling baby above me and then she’s on my chest, her dark eyes blinking, the cry going out of her a minute later. We look at each other. I smell her–her vernix smells like the amniotic fluid. She’s warm. She has my eyes.
5:40 placenta
I barely notice this coming out. A nurse presents me with the placenta after labor, showing me the ruptured amniotic sac attached to one of its sides. The doctor sews me up–a second degree tear–and leaves the room without so much as a good-bye. The baby is weighed and tested and vaccinated. I try breastfeeding for the first time–her latch is good although I can’t help but wince.
The fading epidural has left me feeling warm and buzzy and sleepy. I clutch the baby on my chest as they massage my abdomen, examine the baby over and over and prepare to move me to the recovery room. Eventually I’m wheeled out of the room and taken to a spacious room with a view of one of the hospital’s inner courtyards.
How fast it all went! It didn’t feel like that at the time, especially in those long, elastic hours before 5AM, but it went so, so fast. I was stunned in the aftermath of it all–grateful that it was over, sure, but also stunned by the little human being in my hands.
I tried to sleep, but of course I can’t stop looking at her.

“You know who DOES have a funny bone in her body? Your Mom every night for a dollar!”

“You know who DOES have a funny bone in her body? Your Mom every night for a dollar!”  -Tina Fey, Bossypants

The rib improves–I think. It was pretty marginal for the last week, as I winced my way through the day, alarming Carter with my squeaks as I turned over in bed and heaving myself up and out of couches and chairs and car seats. Underwire bras have been banished. Extensive couch time has been prescribed. Multiple naps have been undertaken.

The ribcage still hurts and I do yelp in pain if I happen to cough or sneeze or twist too far in one direction or another, but it’s slowly, slowly, slowly less noticeable. The naps will continue until morale improves.

Meanwhile baby is thumping away. I think I’ve located her butt or her hip, which she likes to push out where my stomach used to be; I can feel the fluttery squirm of her feet a few inches on my right side. Her head is down pressing against my cervix, as it has been for the past few weeks. We saw it on the ultrasound during my last appointment: a big round circle, wedged at the bottom of my uterus. It didn’t move much. There it will stay, I think, until she’s ready for her grand entrance.

A good sign of my recovery is my ability to knock things off my to-do list. Today’s been a good day. I’ve scheduled my haircut, made shopping lists for the friends baby shower this Sat, and dropped a few things off at the donation center. I’ve written about 3k words for Side Venture since Sunday. Who knows, I might even make 10k steps for the first time in a few days!

Yesterday we visited with Lisa and Erik and their sweet newborn for the first time. My goodness, she was so little, but had such a big presence! And made such impressive poops! Seeing her made it real what was going to happen to us very, very soon. Carter came home and set up our pack n’play, moved even more things up to the attic and bought a TV from Costco for future daddy-soothing purposes.

The next list is going to be simplified and completed tasks removed, I think. Tomorrow is 37 weeks and time is speeding by (a consequence of overnapping?).


*General to-do’s*
Buy Toms shoes on eBay (Mon)
Buy Tieks (any day)
Toss old shoes (check for tread and holes)
Sign up for Imperfect Produce box using coupon code
Sort through SIL’s hand-me-downs
Thank you cards for family baby shower
Make lettuce wraps
Bake sweet potatoes
Clear old food from fridge
Jury duty (check Sunday night)
Laundry (Sunday night)
Schedule house cleaning for Thu
Put cleaning powder on rug and vacuum
Schedule haircut
Roomba 2nd bdrm and bathroom
Trim dead leaves off houseplants
Repot the goddamn mint
Frame for art in baby’s room
Badger parents about TDAP shots
Cake for baby shower
Create inventory for chest freezer
Set up bassinet
Pack hospital bag
Get prescription filled
Clean out baby’s dresser, move my junk upstairs
Organize DVDs by genre
Wash baby clothes given as gifts, organize in dresser

*Food planning for postpartum period*
Jiaozi
Ravioli
Garlic meatballs or meaty marinara
Carnitas
[buy] precooked rice, TJ’s frozen meals (orange chicken, Indian entrees), frozen organic fruit (smoothies), raisins
Freeze ripe bananas

Steel cut oatmeal pucks (freeze)
Freeze sliced whole wheat bread
Cookie dough
Banana bread (slice)

*Writing*
Sign box set contract
Proofread standalone novel
Format and publish standalone novel
Outline SFR series (4)
Outline bestseller story sequels (3)
Buy covers
Write 1/3 bestseller story sequel
Pay Q1 2016 taxes

 

“Pain insists upon being attended to.”

“Pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.” -C.S. Lewis

Today’s pain is not so dramatic as what Lewis was alluding to, most likely, but boy is it insisting on my attention like a toddler wielding a hammer.

In the past week and a half or so pelvic pain has been creeping in on me, on that V shape made by the meeting of my hips and upper thighs. It feels like I’ve been doing squats in my sleep, and waking up to feel the effects–a consistent soreness that persists through the day. At first I did think I might have overexerted myself on a long walk, but it’s stuck around, making it clear that this is not something that will be resolved in a day or two. It must be everything loosening up for birth, which is a good thing, but getting my 10,000 steps in is suddenly that much more challenging. I’ve been slipping a bit. I’ve only surpassed 11k once in the past week.

And…after much joking and veiled warnings from Carter about flipflops during pregnancy, I took my first spill today on my way to the grocery store. (I was, in fact, wearing sneakers.) My left ankle rolled (probably due to my loosened ligaments) and the world went suddenly sideways, and I found myself on the ground, stunned.

I hauled myself up and made my way to the grocery store and wandered up and down the aisles, still rather out of it, and ended up only buying gummy bears and ground coffee instead of the 6 items on my list. It hurts to breathe deeply and sitting up and standing up sends shooting pains through my right side. I did a bit of googling and it turns out it doesn’t matter if it’s bruised, cracked, or broken–the treatment for all three is the same: rest. They can’t x-ray the area or splint a rib, after all.

4-6 weeks of rest. And I’m due in…4 weeks. How’m I going to push with a bum rib? Hopefully it’s a light bruise if anything and it will resolve by then.

The worst of it is: I’ve only finished one item on my list of 10 to-do’s. I can’t stand at the stove and cook, can’t lift things up and down in the baby’s room. All I can do is lie on the couch. This is what depresses me the most.

But, maybe it’s a mixed blessing. Maybe I’ll get some writing done, since more active to-do’s are simply off the menu at the moment.

“It is impossible to go through life without trust: That is to be imprisoned in the worst cell of all, oneself.”

“It is impossible to go through life without trust: That is to be imprisoned in the worst cell of all, oneself.” – J.M. Barrie

Not quite running on fumes–maybe running on low? A quarter tank? It’s been a busy weekend. Friday I finished outlining my SFR–finally–and we went out for groceries on top of a doctor’s appointment and a pediatrician meet n’greet. We shared a salad and chicken sandwich at Gregoire’s while the rain poured outside, and then the rest of the day was spent tapping away at my outline.

I had written in my diary that it was going to be done whether I liked it or not, and lo and behold, I did write it. I’m happy with 4/5 of it. The final story will need some finessing, but it’s good enough that I can get going with writing, if I want. Frankly I’m excited to write it. It’ll be a nice change from what I’ve been working on before.

Saturday was spent at the hospital 10-4 at a baby care class. The class was full of beleaguered pregnant ladies and their partners; I could hear the rustle of snacks being broken out a mere hour after it began, and in the corner of the room one woman who was due to deliver soon napped on her chair. I think the men may have gotten more out of it than the women. When we came home I took a nap despite it being five o’clock; it was only twenty minutes but it gave me the fuel to get through the rest of the day. Carter and I washed our way through 4 loads of hand-me-downs and baby shower clothes, and spent the evening folding and watching TV.

Today was comparatively more relaxed. We slept in until 10:30AM (well, 9:30 pre-daylight savings) and when I got up I made panettone french toast for breakfast along with an egg-and-bacon quesadilla, and then we went to Point Isabel for an hour of watching Beast romp through mud and rain and sea water from the shore. Needless to say he was quite tired when it was all through. We went to Target which was curiously crowded for some returns and an early stock-up on paper towels, detergent, trash bags and frozen organic fruit. All the while it rained.

At home we swore off naps in an effort to go bed on time, and ate the leftover halves of our Thai noodles from the night before. He cleaned out his dresser upstairs, and I finished up my thank you notes and did a few other chores. I cooked a roast chicken with potatoes and brussels sprouts. Carter skipped dessert but I ate a small bowl of balsamic roasted strawberries and vanilla ice cream.

Funny: I notice that I write a lot about food and especially what I cooked, but my achievements are few and far between these days. Cooking is an accomplishment.

The rain has been refreshing and needed but I won’t lie–I’m looking forward to a week of relative sunniness ahead. I hope it will give me a jolt of energy. I am so tired.

 


*General to-do’s*
Buy Toms shoes on eBay (Mon)
Buy Tieks (any day)
Toss old shoes (check for tread and holes)
Sign up for Imperfect Produce box using coupon code
Sort through SIL’s hand-me-downs
Thank you cards for family baby shower
Make lettuce wraps
Bake sweet potatoes
Clear old food from fridge
Jury duty (check Sunday night)
Laundry (Sunday night)
Schedule house cleaning for Thu
Put cleaning powder on rug and vacuum
Schedule haircut
Roomba 2nd bdrm and bathroom
Trim dead leaves off houseplants
Repot the goddamn mint
Frame for art in baby’s room
Badger parents about TDAP shots
Cake for baby shower
Create inventory for chest freezer
Set up bassinet
Pack hospital bag
Get prescription filled
Clean out baby’s dresser, move my junk upstairs
Organize DVDs by genre
Wash baby clothes given as gifts, organize in dresser

*Food planning for postpartum period*
Jiaozi
Ravioli
Garlic meatballs or meaty marinara
Carnitas
[buy] precooked rice, TJ’s frozen meals (orange chicken, Indian entrees), frozen organic fruit (smoothies), raisins
Freeze ripe bananas
Steel cut oatmeal pucks (freeze)
Freeze sliced whole wheat bread
Cookie dough
Banana bread (slice)

*Writing*
Sign box set contract
Proofread standalone novel
Format and publish standalone novel
Outline SFR series (4)
Outline bestseller story sequels (3)
Finish outlining space opera book 2
Outline space opera book 3
Write 1/3 bestseller story sequel

“The human animal differs from the lesser primates in his passion for lists.”

“The human animal differs from the lesser primates in his passion for lists.” – H. Allen Smith

Exhausting weekend, but a good one, and voila, it is already Tuesday!

Friday we attended a comfort class run by our doulas, then stuffed our faces with chicken sandwiches at Gregoire’s before running errands at Home Depot, Sports Authority (birth ball!), and the grocery store. I was so bushed by the end of it that I took a 1.5 hour nap in the afternoon, which is long even for me these days. We spent the evening baking our gender reveal cupcakes for the baby shower, frosting and sprinkling the little pink treats.

Saturday we got up and promptly took Beast out to the dog park, running him hard in the rain, drugging him with Dramamine and then getting on the road for Merced. The rain was spotty, and by the time we rolled in front of Carter’s parents’ house the sky was looking ominous but still holding. The shower happened; I’m a bit foggy on the details, as it was a blur of my in-laws’ family and friends, opening presents with our rambunctious little niece, and chowing down on salad and angel food cake. All very ladylike. We stayed for dinner and a tantrum; we got on the road and by the time we were approaching Oakland the sky unleashed the heaviest rains I remember seeing on a highway. All the cars slowed down to 40 MPH and we inched our way home around 10PM.

Sunday was a day of absolute sloth. How do I know? I have no to-do list from that day. Nothing attempted and nothing accomplished. Dear friend J came over for lunch at Gather in downtown Berkeley; she’s normally a vegetarian but was delighted to find sustainable/local meats on the menu and got herself a bacon cheeseburger. I think half the joy was watching her gobble it down. I had a more restrained egg and forbidden rice dish with kimchi, and we split a truly divine French toast. After the meal we walked around campus and talked about her impending adventures: a summer in Oxford/London, her career, boys, and Asian pastries. J lived in Singapore before she came back to the bay area for the Goog and part time law school; she speaks fluent Russian and French (grew up in Kyrgyzstan) and is a truly cosmopolitan brainiac. I’m almost envious of her adventures to come, if I weren’t, well, otherwise occupied! I bought Carter a pastry from 85C and a boba tea for myself, and the rest of the day disappeared in total indolence.

This week I am feeling relieved that the shower is over and eager to finish out the items on my lists. I’m not as lazy as I was last week–I think. More! Lists!


*Small things I’m excited to do once this baby is outta here*
Sleep on my back
Sleep on my stomach
No more pregnancy rhinitis/congestion
Fit into my shoes again
Wear my wedding rings again
Take Sudafed if I want
Run/exercise with a smidge more intensity
No more random pains in the stomach
No more itchy belly skin
Lean over and touch my toes, do crunches
Roll over in bed without puffery
Feel hungry like a normal person does instead of intense, poisonous rage

*General to-do’s*
Buy Toms shoes on eBay (Mon)
Buy Tieks (any day)
Toss old shoes (check for tread and holes)
Sign up for Imperfect Produce box using coupon code
Sort through SIL’s hand-me-downs
Thank you cards for family baby shower
Make lettuce wraps
Bake sweet potatoes
Clear old food from fridge
Jury duty (check Sunday night)
Laundry (Sunday night)
Schedule house cleaning for Thu
Put cleaning powder on rug and vacuum
Schedule haircut
Roomba 2nd bdrm and bathroom
Trim dead leaves off houseplants
Repot the goddamn mint
Frame for art in baby’s room
Badger parents about TDAP shots
Cake for baby shower
Create inventory for chest freezer
Set up bassinet
Pack hospital bag
Get prescription filled
Clean out baby’s dresser, move my junk upstairs
Organize DVDs by genre
Wash baby clothes given as gifts, organize in dresser

*Food planning for postpartum period*
Jiaozi
Ravioli
Garlic meatballs or meaty marinara
Carnitas
[buy] precooked rice, TJ’s frozen meals (orange chicken, Indian entrees), frozen organic fruit (smoothies), raisins
Steel cut oatmeal pucks (freeze)
Freeze sliced whole wheat bread
Cookie dough
Banana bread (slice)

*Writing*
Sign box set contract
Proofread standalone novel
Format and publish standalone novel
Outline SFR series (4)
Outline bestseller story sequels (3)
Finish outlining space opera book 2
Outline space opera book 3
Write 1/3 bestseller story sequel

“The blue colour is everlastingly appointed by the Deity to be a source of delight…”

“The blue colour is everlastingly appointed by the Deity to be a source of delight; and whether seen perpetually over your head, or crystallised once in a thousand years into a single and incomparable stone, your acknowledgment of its beauty is equally natural, simple, and instantaneous.” – John Ruskin, quoted in a very interesting article about ultramarine

Today was a good and beautiful day, and the sky was as blue as beauty, and the passionflowers were blooming in my backyard, and sunlight illuminated everything.

Today was especially lovely as it was cooler than yesterday. I spent yesterday at the  courthouse near Lake Merritt, waiting to be excused from jury duty for a murder trial. The courthouse was clearly a WPA building, art deco and covered in wood and marble within. There was nothing else nearby, a few closed museums and the lake not too far off. I went to a Cambodian restaurant for lunch and ate overpriced egg rolls and fried rice, then waddled back in the afternoon to see if my hardship excusal had been granted (“I will be 38 weeks pregnant when this trial begins…”).

The court staff and the judge were amiable and understanding that no one wanted to be there; they called two groups of 80 and excused most of us. I was almost moved to tears when standing in the hot, windowless vestibule of the courtroom a very nice man offered me his seat. I hadn’t realized how tired I was that afternoon. I took the BART home and walked back to the house very, very slowly. I lay down on the daybed in the baby’s room but don’t remember if I slept.

I can’t decide if I am genuinely less energetic than before or if the lack of distractions–like I had at work–is simply making me focus on my bodily discomforts more. The day before I left on leave an attorney commented that pregnancy hasn’t slowed you down at all. I cheerily responded that I felt great!

Well; three days later and I feel unwieldy and tired so much of the day. Maybe at work I had no choice but to keep moving, keep working, stop thinking so much about my body. I tried to get more exercise today–11.5k steps–and it did help some, I think. I wasn’t tempted to nap this afternoon. But my feet still ached, and I was short of breath, and my right hip felt like it was aching and over-rotated (like I had pushed my turnout too hard).

Still, the day was not without its minor achievements. I proofread my last novel and caught a few errors; I have my cover ready to go and will likely publish it this weekend. This poor book will alas be an orphan; I have no desire whatsoever to write a sequel and this will be for a different pen name. If it recovers the cost of the cover ($40?) I will be happy. I also began learning basic formatting for creating paperbacks, and this book will be my guinea pig. Tomorrow: dentist, more formatting, possibly some outlining.

I made berry smoothies and fried eggs for breakfast, lettuce cups and roasted Japanese sweet potatoes for lunch, and avocado quesadillas for dinner. I only had one slice of the strawberry cake we made this Sunday. I split a rich chocolate cookie with Carter for evening dessert. Very. Small. Victories.

Baby is turning over and over within me. She just finished her nightly session of hiccups. Little one, how is that I know you are going to be big trouble?


Things to do, mostly unorganized:

*General to-do’s*
Buy Toms shoes on eBay (Mon)
Buy Tieks (any day)
Toss old shoes (check for tread and holes)
Sign up for Imperfect Produce box using coupon code
Sort through SIL’s hand-me-downs
Make lettuce wraps
Bake sweet potatoes
Clear old food from fridge
Jury duty (check Sunday night)
Laundry (Sunday night)
Schedule house cleaning for Thu
Put cleaning powder on rug and vacuum
Schedule haircut
Roomba 2nd bdrm and bathroom
Trim dead leaves off houseplants
Repot the goddamn mint
Frame for art in baby’s room
Badger parents about TDAP shots
Cake for baby shower
Create inventory for chest freezer
Set up bassinet
Pack hospital bag
Get prescription filled
Clean out baby’s dresser, move my junk upstairs
Organize DVDs by genre
Wash baby clothes given as gifts, organize in dresser

*Food planning for postpartum period*
Jiaozi
Ravioli
Garlic meatballs or meaty marinara
Carnitas
[buy] precooked rice, TJ’s frozen meals (orange chicken, Indian entrees), frozen organic fruit (smoothies), raisins
Steel cut oatmeal pucks (freeze)
Freeze sliced whole wheat bread
Cookie dough
Banana bread (slice)

*Writing*
Sign box set contract
Proofread standalone novel
Format and publish standalone novel
Outline SFR series (4)
Outline bestseller story sequels (3)
Finish outlining space opera book 2
Outline space opera book 3
Write 1/3 bestseller story sequel

 

“Do your thing and don’t care if they like it.”

Screen Shot 2016-02-25 at 8.54.30 PM
dog, thin mints, remotes, charging fitbit, earbuds, cell phone, yellow shopping list, bullet journal, my laptop (with my disheveled shadow on the screen)

“Do your thing and don’t care if they like it.” -Tina Fey, Bossypants

Today is my last day “at” work (I’m working from home, which means I’m slouched down on the sofa). I scribbled that quick drawing a few days ago, realizing rather quickly that I’d been over-ambitious trying to draw so much (and color to boot) in ten or twenty minutes. Anyway where I’m sitting now is not much different, except with the addition of Carter’s cough drops and a pair of scissors.

This is the beginning of maternity leave. I have six and a half weeks before my due date. I feel like a high school senior who’s been let out before everyone else, waiting to graduate. Relieved, excited, fearful, unsure.

Baby has been riding low in my belly, knocking the wind out of me occasionally as I’ve been walking. Today I took a stroll during lunch to the post office, and had to stop and double over twice–not in pain, but more in discomfort as she rolled inside me. She hiccups everyday, often in the evenings or in the middle of the night; I can feel the rhythmic flicker a few inches under my belly button. So she’s head-down, which is good.

I woke up this morning abuzz with excitement, wondering what I was going to accomplish today, tingling at the thought of deleting my work inbox and then ignoring it for the next 6 months. I got up, showered, took the dog out, ate breakfast and then sat down at the laptop to delete around 500 emails; finished a few evaluations and last tasks for work, and to write the first round of thank-you emails for baby gifts we’ve received. I walked to the post office, picked up a sandwich from the deli, and came back to delete a few more emails, run the roomba around the house, and drew up a shopping list.

I have to cook for myself now–no more corporate handouts!–so the shopping bill ran over a hundred dollars this week. Two different kinds of sweet potatoes, two different kinds of pears, pink lady apples, blueberries and blackberries, bananas, milk, turkey, shrimp, eggs, cilantro, lettuce, bean sprouts, mushrooms, onions, shallots, green onions, tortillas, whey protein, limes, avocados, and four fudgey brownies. I like that list. It sounds good enough to eat.

Shrimp tacos tonight; tomorrow, fruit smoothies for breakfast, fried eggs; leftover shrimp tacos for lunch; dinner, maybe some turkey lettuce cups and sweet potato coins. If I have the energy I’ll poach some pears in the slow cooker with cinnamon. As for the week ahead, I have some tea eggs and frozen wontons; it looks like I’ll need a few more entrées. And I have two fudgey brownies left, at the end of today!

So many things flitter through my mind as things I need to do but they are so many that I find it hard to put a finger on the most important ones. Tomorrow I’ll do a David Allen Getting-Things-Done style review. I’ve been neglecting journaling as I’ve neared my leave date, but now I can commit to it–at least until little girl decides to make her grand entrance. Good night, & see you in the morning.