Ok, for those of you who do not know me personally, my name is Lynnette, I'm 28 years old and live in Cheyenne, Wyoming. I have been with my current other half for more than 20 mos and our 2 year anniversary since our first date is July 15th, 2009. He is definitely what keeps me sane during the tough days and is the best thing that has ever happened to me. Some of you may find him a bit out of the ordinary in his wants/desires and/or beliefs. I am fine with this, since what is normal to one of us may seem very weird or strange to another. But without variety, we'd all be pretty bored right? My intention is not to say anyone's opinion or way of life is wrong, just to share my world a little bit with you. We all have our own perspective of what should or shouldn't be, but that's why we respect one another's differences and appreciate others for what or who they are, not who we think they should be.
Also, if I seem a little on the blunt or straight forward side, it's because that's how I am in life, I don't believe in sugar coating everything. Especially when I'm not dealing with a small child, I'm dealing with adults. So if it seems cold hearted, no worries, you're not the first to think so. I'm not being cold hearted, I just don't care much for beating around the bush, and I hate liars anyways, so I make it a policy not to lie to anyone about anything, unless it's a new outfit you just love or that surprise party I'm planning and don't want you to know about it.
Anyway, one of my sisters (you know who you are), thought I should start a blog to discuss things going on in my mind, various events happening in my life, or even some of the projects I have managed to occasionally complete here at home when I manage to work on them. Or even critique a few movies or books that I watch or read. Not a bad idea, really. But I seldom feel as though I have much to share with someone I have never met. I only recently decided I would try to blog about my pregnancy. I have been doing a lot of research on do's/don'ts during pregnancy and things we will need for the baby when it gets here. Seems simple right? Wrong. There is enough information out these days, some good references, some not so good, that you could fill up a library on just pregnancy and tips/ideas about what works when it comes to raising a child. Right down to child-proofing your house, and your life. It never occurs to you how much is really out there until you are faced with parenthood and start looking through it all in an attempt to be "prepared" for the inevitable. All I can say is, talk to friends, family, and your GYN/OB for tips and advice. They are very much your best resources for ideas on how to raise or discipline your little one. Even tricks for getting them to bed at night or ways to get them to the next big step in life. You'll find though as welll that opinions are like assholes, everyone has one. So be careful who you ask. You may or may not like the answer.
And now we know why I started getting stuff from Similac months before I even knew I was going to become pregnant. Apparently someone else knew first. It was a running gag until now, right down to the survey about the children I didn't have yet.... HHHMMM.... why couldn't they just tell me this was going to happen so I could've started working on the mom to be stuff? It would have been nice to have a little bit of extra time to get a few things done and planned out.
Ok, enough rambling, down to the nitty gritty :
We are going to back track a couple of months here so I can fill you in on the changes that started before we knew it. Shawn and I had a bad fight Valentine's Day weekend over the house, housework, me not being able to find work, my truck not working, etc. Normal stuff when things feel tight and a lot of people are experiencing tight budgets or a lack of a job no thanks to this economy we're in. I had no idea why at the time, but I was so upset all I could do was cry for hours over us fighting. Normally, this is not like me, I only cry on overly happy occasions (like my neices and my nephew's births) or when my father passed away a few years back. Occasionally if I feel frustrated enough over a situation, I have found crying a good way to relieve that stress. But over the fight we had? Not normally me. Now, before you ask, we did make up within a few days, we each just needed some time to say our piece and chill out. We normally do not have big fights, so this was a surprising first for us. I thought we'd been doing pretty good on the communication and the compromise until that point. Another couple we know had a fight that weekend or just a bad weekend so our first thoughts were of planetary alignment screwing up what should have been a nice, romantic weekend. And without another thought, we put it all behind us. When we look back now, my hormones had really started kicking in, we just didn't know it then.
During the week: My lower back started to feel sore no matter how I sat down on the couch. I started to blame our comfy couch since the padding was going flat was many, many hours of everyday use and the bars underneath that is part of the recliners on each end. Again, no idea at the time this was a head's up from my body of my being pregnant. How many of us hear about from friends and family about the soreness in the lower back during pregnancy? I didn't know about it.
Friday, February 20th, 2009
The morning sickness started. I woke, took my usual morning pee (TMFI I'm sure for some of you), made my coffee and sat down to have my cigarette. (I've since quit smoking FYI). In less than 30-60 minutes I was running for the bathroom to unload that cup of coffee I just had. Every once in a while, more like a blue moon, when I am getting ready to start, this is not so unusual. I throw up once, I feel fine afterwards. Period starts. Normal. Not this time.
Saturday, February 21st, 2009
Again, coffee, cigarette, toilet, nuff said. I still felt nausiated afterwards and later that evening, my other half decides we should have a pizza night. Sounded good to me since none of us felt like cooking that day. We ordered two large pizzas, one of them a six cheese pizza from papa john's that is very, very good. I highly reccomend it if you haven't tried it. I don't remember what the other one was right now. But although I love their six cheese pizza, I could not stomach even the smell of it. The parmesan cheese was overwelming to me. I kept the box closed as much as possible.
Sunday, February 22nd, 2009
Again, almost threw up. Avoided doing so this time. Thankfully, but unfortunately, the nautia stayed with me throughout the day. We began to wonder about my being pregnant. Ironically, our roommate, Chris, commented, "No offense, but if you're pregnant, I'm moving out." I couldn't help but laugh about it.
Monday night/Tuesday morning,
I couldn't sleep over the thoughts racing through my head about whether or not I might be pregnant and all the ways it would change our lives forever. So I crawled out of bed, and took the EPT test with me to the bathroom. And I waited the longest 3 minutes of a women's life. It was positive. I felt numb a little bit at first. This is a lot to take in when the most you've had to think about concerning your own actions is yourself, maybe a roommate or a boyfriend at the time. And of course, my spoiled cat named Jennie (she's about ten years old now). Granted, I have 2 neices and a nephew that I have helped out with off and on over the years, but have never had any children of my own. We almost thought I wasn't meant to have kids, and I learned to be fine with that. Now my whole world and my perspective of the world is changing in an instant and my brain is struggling to keep up. I did start to feel excited as it sunk in, and then, for the same reasons I couldn't sleep, I found going back to bed to be impossible. So I waited....
Tuesday morning, about 5:00 am, Shawn's alarm goes off. I anxiously waited for him to get his coffee and come out to the livingroom, let him take a few sips, and then, resolve to tell him. I always figured one of two things would be his reaction: a) he'd freak out at first, then get excited, or b) be really excited about it all from the start. The answer: c) neither of the above. I handed him the pregnancy test, told him he was going to be a father, and he asked if I was sure. I handed him the directions to the test (which are very easy to follow) and he said after a few quiet minutes of reading, that he's gonna have to start smoking outside, and I'm going to have to quit smoking. He was very calm during all of this. Not quite what I thought would happen, but not a bad reaction either. He did request that I go down to Planned Parenthood or a health clinic and have a doctor do the test just to be certain. I told him no problem, I would see about doing it as soon as I could. Of course, home pregnancy tests are usually about 99.98% accurate, so I doubted the doctor would tell me different. I still don't know why some advertisements suggest that a home pregnancy test would be hard to read. They seem fairly simple to me.
Later that morning, after Shawn goes to work, I ask our neighbor Tony (we've known him for years) if he would drive me down since my truck is not yet running. He agrees as soon as he is off of work, he would take me. Anyway, I looked up on the internet for places that offered free or discounted pregnancy tests via the doctor so I would know where I needed to go before we left. It wasn't until we arrived at planned parenthood that we learned they are closed on Tuesdays. I thought such services would be open at least five days a week. I was wrong. So we went to the City Health Clinic just down the street. The nurse gave me a pregnancy test, I had to pee on this one too, and then as we were waiting for the results, Shawn called. Of course, I answered and we both got the news at the same time. I believe he said "oh sh**" and then went a little quiet after that. The nurse asked me a few questions, such as whether or not I wanted to keep my baby, and of course, I told her I am keeping my baby (no, this is not a weird madonna flashback to her music). She commented that 70% of all women who come in there do not want their babies. I was shocked. I mean, a few here and there not wanting or feeling ready to take on parenthood, but 70%? That's a huge number. Why so many here? I can't help but wonder. Anyway, paperwork aside, she explained some options to me about having access to a group of nurses who help you prepare for parenthood, help you with questions and concerns you have, etc. And even classes offered, health care options, the works. She even went over with me if I had insurance, and if we qualified for a state funded insurance program. Thankfully, we did qualify on that one. Having kids is expensive, so every little bit helps. She even gave me my first bottle of prenatal vitamins.
When I got home, I started looking for OB/GYNs in town to see what options I had for doctors. Granted, Cheyenne is a small town compared to what I'm used to, they still have several options for expecting parents on the list of doctors they can choose from. I found an ad for the Cheyenne Women's Clinic on 20th and decided to make my appointment with them. They have multiple doctors and even midwives (aka nurses) available at the clinic and if you feel uncomfortable with one doctor there, all you do is let them know and you can choose to see a different one there at the clinic instead. Easy right? I don't know yet. But I'm not one to feel uncomfortable with a doctor regardless of them being male or female. My trust in them is based on how I am treated as an individual, how they handle my questions, how professional they are, etc. Two of the best doctors I ever had were male years ago. If I could have, I would've had them move to Cheyenne with me. But that part wasn't up to me, and neither of them specialize in women's specific health care so I would not be able to make a maternity appointment with them anyhow.
I called to see about making an appointment with them and I was scheduled for March 20th, the approximate date of my being about 8 weeks along in my pregnancy. They asked me a few questions for my basic information, and viola! I was scheduled.
That night, we called Shawn's parents to tell the news. I wish to this day I had someone with a camera in the house to film his mom's reaction. Bear in mind, they have several pets, many dogs in the house, so the sound was overwhelming to hear. But we all put them on speakerphone so we could hear her reaction. All she could say at the top of her lungs is "We're gonna be grandparents!!!" over and over again. She got so excited all the dogs in the house started barking and getting excited too. It was the best reaction I'd ever heard. Too bad I don't have video though. His dad had to ask a soon to be infamous question that many other asked themselves "Well, how'd that happen?" HHMMMmm..
We told my mom and my sisters the next night at my mom's house and they were very excited. My nephew (he's only 6) is trying to grasp still the idea that his aunt has a baby in her tummy and he is getting a new cousin. Of course, he doesn't want to wait until October to meet him or her. He wants to meet the new baby now. How cute is that?
On March 28th, we called my other sister Heidi and told her the good news. She is very excited but disappointed she can't be here for my pregnancy like she wanted to do. Her two daughters, my nieces are also very excited.
Within the coming week, we found ourselves running around inquiring about food stamps, WIC, and anything else that might be helpful to us in providing good medical care and nutrition to this baby from the get go. The amount of paperwork is nuts, and these agencies we learned, are nosey about your income, what you drive, and what you spend your money on when you get it and even how or where you get your income. Food Stamps here does not care about what bills you have to pay, or the deductions that come out before you can even cash that paycheck. They only care about your gross income. Doesn't leave much for the cost of living, does it?
Anyway, we found out with food stamps and the medical coverage, as far as they are concerned, we make too much based on our gross income. And despite the fact that I have been searching for work for some time now, even before becoming pregnant, is not helping us. No one hires a pregnant women despite the fact that it's a violation of federal law to discriminate against someone who is pregnant. They get around this by simply not calling you for an interview. No one says it, and nothing in writing, means no lawsuits, no violations. But deep down you can't help but wonder if your pregnancy is their reason for not calling you in the first place. So me working right now to help us get some extra cash for this baby is seemingly not an option.
We have managed to qualify for some WIC benefits for the time being, we'll see long they last.
February 28th, 2009
I started calling friends and family to tell them all the good news. The universal questions were when was I due and if Shawn and I were planning on getting married. My response to these: last week of October and not at this time. Shawn is indecisive about marriage itself. Sometimes we catch him saying things that indicates someday he will propose, but if you ask him directly how he feels and it's no way, no how he wants to be married. I believe a good part of this reasoning is the modern day divorce rate (well over 50%) and the fact that many of his friends, including his sister had great relationships until they got married. Then they found themselves ill prepared for their new roles and expectations of one another. Their marriages didn't last 6 months to a year after that. I believe he fears this happening to him, and all things considered, I don't blame him for it. Not one bit. Of course, he already told Chris, his best friend of more than 20 years, that he was going to be the best man and he would drag him to the wedding from the hospital if he had to in order to make sure he attended. So the jury is still out on this subject. Time will tell if it's in the cards for us or not. I'm not going anywhere and I have no intention of walking out on the best thing that has happened to me even if he ultimately decides he doesn't want to do the wedding thing. Besides, it's just a piece of paper, right? What matters is how we feel about each other, and the fact that we are always there for each other. Marriage is not a requirement for love.
In the weeks that followed until our doctor's appointment, I spent many hours online refreshing my mind about what it is to be pregnant (until now, I could only watch my sisters and their experiences of pregnancy) as it is different for everyone each time and this is my first baby so this is uncharted territory for me as well. I started looking through all the do's and don'ts while you are pregnant, birthing options (I know I have some time, but it couldn't hurt, right?), pain medication options, stuff for the baby nursery (it's a given in my family that my first baby shower and nursery theme would be Precious Moments, if you knew me that is), etc. Anything I could think of that was baby related I went looking online for information on it. At first, it's overwhelming, then you start to sort through it as though you are back in school trying to write that report for a science or histor class, or maybe the occasional english composition assignment. I even signed up at www.planningfamily.com for email updates that I recieve weekly telling me about how my baby is developing. It's a learning experience and a wonder all at the same time. I highly reccomend it. They even have forums where you can get questions answered, and share your experiences with others just like yourself who may be having their first or their fifth kid.
We also received paperwork ahead of time to fill out for the doctor and Shawn initially also wanted to keep the sex of the baby a surprise until it was born. I can't wait to find out and his mom wants to know too before she starts crocheting. He changed his mind within a matter of days when he realized all of the rest of us wanted to know before hand. He said he would let it go, this time. Hmmm..... (this coming from the guy who has repeatedly insisted that he is getting fixed after the baby is born, I wonder....)
March 20th, 2009
Our first official doctor's appointment, or so we thought. This visit consisted of me drinking a lot of water in an attempt to go pee in a cup, before I could be seen by the doctor. Once I got that out of the way, we got a room to go wait in. We didn't have to wait long, only a few minutes. They asked us about our medical histories, any allergies I have to any medications, the usual stuff. We were diappointed we couldn't do the sonogram yet. And even though Shawn doesn't like to admit to being excited about anything, if you knew him you could see the excitement before this visit about hearing his baby's heartbeat and seeing the sonogram. Naturally we were both very disappointed to find out we had to wait another month. Shawn even said as much after the appointment. Apparently, their equipment, as they explained it, was not sensitive enough to see the baby at only eight weeks.
Anyway, I've had an insane appetite (they say I should only need an extra 200-300 calories per day during the first trimester) that has just thrown the charts on how much to eat out the window along side typical weight gain. It's been interesting. I'm already out-eating the guys I know. Everyone is telling me either I'm having a boy or I'm having twins. If we are having twins, I have some butts to go kick. Starting with one of my brother in laws. He commented years ago "Watch, when you have kids, you're going to have twins!" I promised him a good beating if it came true. All in good fun of course. Our next doctor's appointment is April 17th, also on a Friday, that way Shawn can be there for all of the appointments we go to. It's his one day off during the week, so we are trying to make sure he doesn't have to request any time off from work. I'll be posting pictures as we get them ourselves along side any updates. Hopefully next week I will have some sonogram pictures to share.