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If you already suffer from heartburn and/or acid reflux, I beg you NOT to get pregnant. I’ve always sort of thought people who complained about heartburn needed to chew their food a little more and maybe try a salad every once in a while. Never again will I judge them. I plan to buy the industrial sized bottle of Tums at BJ’s this weekend. It should last me until Thursday, when I can ask my doctor if I have other options. She’ll probably tell me to chew my food and try a salad every once in a while.


I am 31 weeks today, 9 weeks to go. One more week and I can call myself “8 months pregnant”, which will hopefully earn me extra sympathy and chocolate from friends and strangers. I’m not any huger than previously reported but it hardly matters at this point. Nothing is ever going back to the way it was pre-baby. I found a stretch mark on my knee (I didn’t know that was possible) and I have cellulite on my arms.

Everyone wants great thinks for their children. They want them to be president, or cure cancer, or end world hunger, or win an Olympic gold medal for the decathlon. My current dream is my son becomes a celebrity dermatologist who invents a miracle smoothing and fading cream and gives me a lifetime supply for free.

My hospital has a Baby Lojack system. No, really. All babies get an ankle bracelet with an electronic chip in it. If someone tries to take the baby out of the birthing center, all the door automatically lock down and an alarm goes off. I’m happy to know no one will be wandering off with my newborn, but being trapped in that one wing of the hospital for several days might drive me to “test” their system.

In addition to the ankle bracelet, the baby nursery is locked at all times, you aren’t allowed to carry a baby around outside your room unless it’s in the hospital bassinet, and everyone – baby, mom and dad – get matching serial numbers on a wristband. The nurses check the numbers on a regular basis to make sure you’ve got YOUR baby.

My birthing instructor assured us that this hospital has never had any “accidents” with missing or stolen babies. I was tempted to ask how one “accidentally” steals a baby but didn’t want to be a smart ass to anyone who could potentially be involved with my future pain relief.

One of the reasons I still read the iVillage message boards is for the unintentional laughs. In a discussion on ways to help and overdue baby make an appearance, all the usually suggestions were made: spicy food, caster oil, nipple stimulation, and having sex. The last one seems to be at least kind of scientific, since semen contains prostaglandins, a hormone that can help thin the cervix and start labor. But one pregnant woman said “Oh I heard about prostaglandins! My husband says they even work orally.”

A quick Google search assures me that this is a) not true and b) this dude better pray no one tells his wife he was lying.

E and I got a certificate of graduation at class tonight. I guess this means I’m now allowed to give birth, although I’m pretty sure they couldn’t have stopped me anyways. I was generally pleased with the class, but didn’t learn much that wasn’t already in What to Expect. I think making people take classes BEFORE they get pregnant would be a better idea. It could be a combination preparedness/maybe-you-should-think-about-this-a-little-more/teen birth control class. I’d start by showing them my nipples.

I had a very vivid and incredibly weird dream last night where, through some sort of X-Men-like mutant electrical field anomaly, I was suddenly carrying twins. But the second baby wasn’t mine. And since I was a little less than thrilled with being repeatedly kicked in the cervix by someone else’s responsibility, the overlords of Babytown threw me into pregnant woman prison “for my own good”. I think it may have been run by the evil president from 24. My days consisted of sleeping on a pile of hay and being told what a bad mother I was for drinking soda, eating cheese puffs, watching Rock Of Love Bus, not knowing all the words to “Hush little baby”, painting the nursery while pregnant, not using cloth diapers, yelling at my dog for staring at me, enjoying really tasteless jokes, and failing to scrapbook every moment of my pregnancy and upcoming baby’s life.

My subconcious obviously needs a vacation.

I think I’m having Braxton-Hicks contractions. I mean, not right at this moment, but several times today I’ve had this really uncomfortable crampy feeling. Since I’ve been a good pregnant woman and paid lots of attention at birthing class I know better than to speed dial my doctor, but I can’t say I’m thrilled with this development. Being 30 weeks pregnant is pretty much uncomfortable enough by itself, no random extra pains required.

Oh, actually I am having one right now.

I know better than to think this is Real Pain. I am sure in the not so distant future I will look back on these tiny practice contractions and think “Man I miss those. Can we go back to those? I’ll take all the Braxton-Hicks you’ve got! It’s like they were made of sunshine! Tiny leprechauns were dancing under rainbows in my uterus!” But right now it feels like those leprechauns are really drunk and wearing steel toed boots while they rehearse for the touring cast of Stomp! Coming soon to a reproductive system near you!

The baby book suggest I use this time to practice my breathing techniques so I’m prepared for real labor. I’m going to use this time to practice getting my husband to fetch me things so he’s prepared for real labor.

Reasons I love my mom:
1. She is willing to spend two hours talking to me on the phone about nothing so we can avoid doing things like cleaning out the closet or doing laundry.
2. I told her I was looking for that bookcase for the nursery and within 20 minutes she had gone to her Target and bought me one. Plus, she works there so I got 10% off!
3. She is willing to come take care of me and help with the baby for as long as I want – but has agreed to go away immediately if things aren’t working out so well.
4. My mother is NOT afraid to say the word vagina. I was telling her one of the things I learned in birthing class was sometimes fetal monitoring has to be done internally and she explained that they did that when she gave birth to my brother. They stick a wire in a plastic tube in through your vagina and it pokes a little hole in the baby’s head. She assured me it was no big deal. So not only am I less concerned about it, I can make fun of my brother for having a hole in his head!
5. While talking about what movies we’d both like to see this weekend, I told her I wanted to see “Taken” because it was by the same people who did “The Transporter”. Her response was “Oh I love Jason Statham. He always has really nice guns”.
6. She is totally willing to follow my parenting rules without judging. She supports my desire to breastfeed but doesn’t think formula will kill my baby. She will happily help change whatever kind of diapers I want. If I decided my baby should wear orange on alternating Tuesdays she would wonder if I was crazy…but would do it anyways.

And finally, because of this:
“Back when I was pregnant, Lamaze classes were popular. My instructor made us all feel really bad about wanting any kind of pain relief so I was too scared to ask for it. That was a bad idea – I really could have used something. Demerol at the very least. Please, Suzanne, get the epidural.”

We have recently come to the realization that we actually CANNOT afford to have a baby with only one income – at least not if we continue to live the way we’ve become accustomed. So it looks like we’re cutting back.

The first casualty is HBO – which I figure is probably better anyways. I think the only boobs my baby really needs to see are the ones that provide his food. Next to go will be E’s GPS service. I figure the only places he really needs to find for the next year or so are a) our house and b) the hospital. Which is less than a mile from our house. If he needs a fancy satellite guidance system to find either of those I have bigger problems than money – like how bad is his alcohol poisoning or who else has been beating him in the head?

Luckily, thanks to the ridiculously high rate at which the government taxed E’s bonus last year we’re getting a nice refund. It should be enough to keep us in diapers and tiny socks for the next year or so, when I can work on finding another source of income.* I think it will even cover a replacement for my leaking washing machine and maybe one of those fancy gliders for the nursery. At the very least it means I can look forward to spending time with my baby in a house complete with both heat and electricity.

*Actually, in the next year or so we’ll probably be moving, although I can’t think about that right now or I’ll have a panic attack. But hopefully it’s to somewhere with a slightly less ridiculous cost of living.

img_1698The only angle from which I still look semi-human.

30 weeks pregnant. Comparing 30 weeks to 20 weeks scares the crap out of me – if I can triple in size in 10 weeks, what’s going to happen in the NEXT 10???


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January 2009
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