Part 2: Complications after birth

The next disruption to my plans ended up being very scary for both my husband and me. It’s something I’ve hesitated to share, because I’m not sure why I would want to, or why anyone would want to know. I certainly am not sharing this to be dramatic or to gain sympathy. But what happened to me in the hours after delivery scared me enough that I will never forget it, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it continues to affect me emotionally for years to come.

I do, however, feel fortunate to have found people who shared a similar experience. It was a relief to know I had friends who could empathize. So that is why I am sharing this part of my birth story, now. My hope is to offer that same empathy to someone else who may have been through a similar trauma.

Bleeding happens after you deliver. Our bodies produce so much more blood while we are pregnant in order to support the baby. Some of that blood is in the uterine lining. Your doctor tells you to expect bleeding for several weeks after delivery, but they also tell you what is too much.

I remember being exhausted after I delivered. My nurses encouraged me to rest. My son was getting excellent care in the NICU. All signs pointed to him being healthy and that the 12 hour stay he had ahead of him would end up being precautionary. As a new mom we don’t get many opportunities to rest. If you need it during those first few hours or days after birth, it’s okay to take advantage of the help the hospital offers.

My plan, of course, was to be super mom. I had even joked with my overnight nurse in the post delivery wing that sleeping would be nice, but the adrenaline rushing through me was not going to allow that to happen that night. I don’t know why I had it, but thinking back, I am so thankful for that adrenaline rush. It was why I was awake and was able to recognize something was wrong.

It was around 1 a.m. or so when it felt like my water had broken. The problem was, I had already had the baby. So I turned on my phone flashlight and looked to see what was going on. It wasn’t water and it wasn’t urine that was streaming out of me… it was massive amounts of blood. Way more than what I was told was normal. I rang the call button for the nurse. She was calm when she examined me, telling me it was a little more than she would like to see. The culprit… a huge blood clot, which she was able to help remove. We hoped it was the only one. Sometimes you don’t pass clots because you have to pee. So she had me get up to use the bathroom. Several more clots passed at that point, and then I laid back down to rest. They told me again, how much blood loss was normal. If this happened again I was to ring my call button.

Forty five minutes later… another huge gush of blood. This time it wasn’t just my call nurse who came in, but also the charge nurse for the floor. At that time I couldn’t wrap my brain around exactly what was happening to me, but I knew it wasn’t good and I started to get scared. My husband was still sleeping on the couch across from me. He had taken his anti anxiety medication before he fell asleep, so he was out for the count. But I was getting emotional enough that I knew I needed his support, and I had the nurses wake him up.

Shortly after that I started shaking uncontrollably. The nurses continued to push on my uterus to work out any more clots and that was extremely painful. Medications had to be administered which caused even more pain… and then I passed out. My husband said the scene was terrifying. At this point there were 6 to 10 nurses in our tiny room working on me. He was holding my hand, listening to my pain, watching me shake, and then I suddenly went limp. All I remember is feeling sick, not being able to hear well, and then suddenly having doctors and nurses in my face telling me I had fainted, was only out for about 16 seconds, and that they were taking me to an O.R. for surgery.

Past that point I don’t remember much. All I could do was tell them what I was acutely feeling and trust that they would get the bleeding to stop.

In the hours after I gave birth, I hemorrhaged. I lost between 900 and 1000 cc’s of blood. It turns out there are a few reasons your body will do that post delivery. I hemorrhaged because I had so many massive clots that had formed in my uterus, that despite the nurses efforts to help push them out, my uterus couldn’t pass them. The surgery was an emergency D & C. Once they cleared the clots and anything else that could have been i there, the bleeding stopped.

I made my husband call my parents before I went in to the O.R. I had no idea what was going to happen in there, but I knew that they would want to know what was going on. Selfishly, I needed them to know. My parents are some pretty fierce prayer warriors, and I needed as much help as I could get.

Just before they put me under I remember hoping to not see my dead grandmother… and telling God that I wasn’t ready to go. It seems dramatic to say that, but that’s where my mind was. I didn’t really know what was happening, and while I trusted my team, there was some belief that my body would fail me.

Hemorrhaging after birth is not extremely common, but it does happen. Thank God we live in a time where modern medicine exists and doctors know what to do to stop the bleeding. When it didn’t exist, the outcome was detrimental.

The blood loss left me borderline for needing a transfusion. My iron and blood stores are pretty depleted, leaving me with zero wiggle room when it comes to self care. Appropriate sleep and an iron rich diet are critical for me to be able to function. For the first couple of weeks I was home I didn’t understand that, and my body shut down forcing me back to the hospital for nearly passing out.

If I can’t take care of myself, then there are options. But for now, I’m much more vigilant. It is a slow journey. I can tell if I’ve pushed myself too hard. My doctors say it will take 6 to 9 months to replace what I lost, IF I take care of myself. In the meantime, I’ll continue to feel better every day. And I look forward to the new normal that comes with a family of 5.

Part 1 of my birth story: disrupted plans

I can’t believe that almost 4 weeks ago I had a baby. He’ll turn one month old before we reach his due date. It’s a miracle he is doing so well!

I had high hopes of making it to full term. In my mind, I had decided that he was going to come over Easter. That would have put me at 37 weeks. But it wasn’t meant to be.

April 5th was a fun day. Early that morning I had gotten up feeling contractions and a little more “off” than usual. But these things had been happening. So I just drank a ton of water and went about my day. I went in to work, shot a promo with Daily Blast Live for a mommy makeover, and had a lot of fun on the noon show in studio for the Rockies Home Opener. The station threw a big barbecue in the backyard complete with cracker jacks, peanuts, hot dogs and burgers… this mama was HAPPY.

There were no significant contractions coming, so I really wasn’t worried about anything… until late that afternoon. I was sitting at my desk having a conversation with a coworker when I briefly stood up. That was the moment I realized the back of my dress was soaking wet. I looked down at my desk chair and realized it, too, was soaking wet. In that moment I thought, “Crap, I think my water has broken, and I’m at work.”

It wasn’t the same gush of water like my previous 2 pregnancies, but it was obviously enough to be concerning. Lucky for me I was wearing the kind of dress where you couldn’t tell it was soaking wet. So, I finished my conversation and went to the backyard to call my doctor. Her thoughts were the same as mine. Sounds like my water broke and it was time to get to the hospital. After all, I still had that dang cerclage in!

I went to tell my news director that I needed to go. She walked me back to my desk and helped me close up my work station. In my mind I was going to drive myself there. My contractions weren’t bad! But we were quickly approaching rush hour and I needed to get to the other side of town. So, instead, we played it safe and decided Cory Reppenhagen, my friend, coworker and fellow meteorologist would drive me.

It had been my plan to arrive at the hospital inconspicuously. I didn’t really want people knowing I was there, especially if the baby was coming early. I wanted the chance to deal with it emotionally before blasting the news to the public. Hahahahaha… plans!

📸: Cory Reppenhagen

When asked to describe the 9NEWS storm chasing vehicle… WeatherTitan… inconspicuous is not a word one would use. It’s a ginormous truck with 9NEWS tattooed all over it. Yet, this was my transportation to the hospital. The same truck we go storm chasing in, got me to the entrance of labor and delivery. When we arrived Cory and I were laughing pretty hard at the irony. EVERYONE was staring. In fact, it was so awesomely obvious that it was a 9NEWS vehicle that security thought we were there for the 9Health Fair happening there the next day. Imagine her surprise when I continued to check myself in! So much for plans. At the end of the day, it got me there safely, and I am very thankful to Cory for that!

My husband arrived about 15 minutes later, and nurses quickly confirmed that my water had, in fact, broken.

We also could tell that my cervix had thinned and I was already 2 cm dilated, despite the stitch. Fortunately contractions, still, were not that bad so my doctor was able to, relatively easily, remove my cerclage without medication. I wouldn’t say that process was totally painless, but I’ve experienced worse.

After the stitch was out I immediately dilated to 5 cm, and then my OB/GYN broke the rest of my water. Unlike my other two babies, this time my water broke up high… that’s why there was no rush of fluids. Then, I was told that if I wanted the epidural, to get it now, because if we waited it might be too late. So I got that epidural, and we waited. It’s possible the epidural slowed the process down a bit… but a few hours later, after about 3 pushes, the baby was born.

My husband was phenomenal during the whole process. He was the one who got to announce to the room the gender of the baby. And the joyful shouts of “It’s a boy!” after his first exclamation were so cool to hear.

I think the kids were fairly excited for their little brother… the hospital setting scared my 6 year old a bit, especially when she saw mommy attached to all kinds of things. But eventually she relaxed and realized I was okay. Waiting for the baby to arrive was the hardest part for them. If I had to hear “when can we go home?” one more time… 😆. It was a good thing the baby came close to their bed time!

Jeffrey Thomas arrived at 8:30 pm. He weighed 5 lbs 12 ounces… the biggest of all my babies. Since he came early, he was required to spend the next 12 hours in the NICU. It wasn’t my favorite option, but his health was most important and I knew I could visit him whenever I wanted. That was my plan, to start nursing immediately and visit him every few hours overnight in the NICU. But that’s the funny thing about me and birth plans… they never seem to go the way I want.

My butt ripped a hole in my maternity jeans… and a few other updates!

It was a sad day a couple of weeks ago. I was pulling on a pair of maternity jeans when I felt it, a long rip around the top of my butt. I knew they were tight, but my goodness! Oh the joys of the last trimester of pregnancy.

It’s hard to explain unless you’ve been through it. But even maternity clothes don’t fit quite right during that last trimester. My narrow body frame is desperately trying to accommodate my rapidly growing belly, but if I go up a size, I’ll just be swamped in extra fabric. And then there’s finding clothes that work for my job as a television meteorologist. Long story short, some people haven’t been happy with my appearance and have emailed and posted some inappropriate things.

I allowed some of those things to get to me, dealt with my emotions and then made a public post to address the general dislike of a growing baby belly. It went viral. It is not typical for me to respond so publicly, but I had had enough. I’ve gotten these types of comments for all 3 of my pregnancies. And I thought it was important for people to know that I wouldn’t have been able to respond the way I did had it not been for work I’ve done on my own mental health. I struggled with mental health issues just before I had my son and for years afterward. My doctor told me the therapist she thought I should go to, and that was life changing for me. I made my math-based social media post purely for me.

It helped me stand up for myself and take back my power. The next day, I explained the process I went through to make that post in hopes that it would inspire others (including my own children one day) to do the same.

You can find the links to the stories here.

The overwhelming support I have received since writing the post, appearing on the Today Show and even having it published on Yahoo and through iheart radio stations has been amazing. I’m so happy to see that good far outweighs the bad and I hope others who are struggling have the opportunity to see that, too.

In other news, (I think) I have one more month of pregnancy to go!! My son was delivered at 35 weeks, and I just reached that milestone the other day.

Technically I could give birth at any time. My left uterus, which has never been pregnant before, has been acting like a champ. This is counter-intuitive to what we thought when we found out I was pregnant on that side. That uterus started out just a bit smaller than the other one. However, unlike with the right uterus, the baby’s growth has not significantly slowed down for this pregnancy and it continues to measure a week ahead of schedule.

I’m only slightly frightened by what that means for delivery. My last two babies weighed 5 lbs. 10 oz. I know my mother’s stories of having a 9 lbs baby (me). To all the women who have had larger babies, I salute you and your amazing bodies. I’ve had it easy. This time, maybe not.

I failed, then passed the gestational diabetes test. 🤢

My family spent a fantastic vacation in Hawaii.

Discovered how thankful I am that we keep my dad’s snow pants at our house.

And then proceeded to work a blizzard, all while managing to stay pregnant during a rare Colorado bomb cyclone! #winning

More recently, my body HAS been giving me signs that it may go into labor sooner rather than later. Enough signals that I called my doctor and they brought me in to see how I was doing. I was having contractions, but they weren’t that strong and were coming every 12 minutes.

They also had me take a test to see if I would go into labor in the next two weeks. It’s called an FFN, or  fetal fibronectin test. It’s definitive if it comes back negative, you will not go into labor. Not so definitive if it comes back positive. Mine came back positive. So I’ve also been getting a couple of steroid shots to help my baby’s lung development along. So far, (knock on wood) so good. But I would really prefer not to have NICU in my labor and delivery room. And I would also prefer not to go into labor before my cerclage comes out. That happens in just a couple of weeks. Then, for real, it is game on.

Even though the baby has developed A TON, I still struggle with emotional stress from this pregnancy. Just the other night I had a nightmare that I delivered my child and then never saw it… for days. No one would tell me if it was alive or not. So while I don’t want this baby to come into the world just yet, I will be relieved when my healthy child is finally here.

My husband and I have most things organized and moved around so that we are ready for the baby! We’ve moved my son into his new room and have set up the nursery once again. Plus, I fully intend on working until I have to check-in to the hospital for delivery. We are so blessed and so excited to meet this new addition!

Breaking Point

We all have one, right? A breaking point?  Maybe you let something small bug you for too long. Maybe you’ve just been doing everything you can to get through your day, but all of a sudden too many days have piled up and just getting through isn’t good enough any more. Sometimes you know the breaking point it coming. Sometimes it sneaks up on you.

Mine snuck up on me yesterday. I hit 29 weeks of pregnancy. The baby still looks great. It’s measuring a week ahead of schedule and they estimate it weighs around 3 lbs. 3 oz. My high risk doctors don’t seem to be concerned. I’ve only gained around 14 pounds, which is less than they’d like, but from their perspective, everything else is going really well. And everyday, I like to pretend that’s exactly how I feel… gleeful, chirpy, tickled pink… the happiest girl on the planet. It’s an act I can successfully pull off, until I reach my breaking point. After all, I have enough distractions: work, kids, life to name a few. Who has time to even think about themselves and how they are coping when the rest of the world needs to be taken care of? Then yesterday happened.

I failed my initial gestational diabetes test, and I had an emotional break down. And if I’m really being honest, I’m still reeling from it today. For the last 12 hours or so, I’ve been trying to figure out why this triggered me. Maybe it’s because I barely failed? The threshold measurement at my doctor’s office is 135… I got a 139. Maybe it’s because I know what’s coming next? I failed the first test with my son, too… then nearly passed out at the doctor’s office for the longer version and proceeded to feel like crap for the rest of the day. Maybe it’s because I’ve just had enough? My entire pregnancy I am poked at, prodded and examined. I hate needles, but needles are necessary when you’re high risk. Why NOT add something else to worry about to the list… gestational diabetes!? I kept coming up with reason after reason, until finally I realized it’s not just one thing. It’s all of them.

When I sit down and allow myself think and feel, I realize how worried I’ve been about this baby for the last seven months, and how I’ve shoved all those feelings aside. I have two children, 4 and 6 who need a lot of attention. The 6-year-old is in kindergarten, has homework, dance and swimming classes, friends’ parties and girl scouts. Have I mentioned it’s cookie season? The 4-year-old needed to be signed up for spring soccer, registered for kindergarten next year, and also has swim lessons. They each have emotional needs at the beginning and end of each day. While I know I’m raising compassionate little beings, most days it feels like the compassion ends with mommy.

My husband is desperately trying to keep up with and tolerate what I can’t or don’t do around the house. But I feel his frustration. Eating cereal at the end of the day is never ideal. And sometimes you just need a brain break!

I’ve written a list of things that need to get done before the baby arrives. Lord only knows if we’ll finish it. I only have a certain amount of energy every day. Once that’s over I know I can’t do anything else. I try to plan wisely, but in the back of my mind I know there’s still a lot of items on that list.

In the middle of it all I got sick. Judging by my fever, cough, body aches and fatigue… it could have been the flu. I had to miss days of work that I didn’t want to. Those lists of mine didn’t get touched for a couple of weeks and kids still came to me with needs.

Then there’s the life that is growing inside of me. Everyday I’m focused on making it to the next day or the next week. I’m constantly worried about whether I can feel the baby move. Most of the time the baby is active, but movements are different now as the baby gets bigger. They are slower and less ninja-like. I wonder if I’m feeling a contraction or if the baby stretching. And when it IS a contraction… I’m constantly worried that my water is going to break. Just a few days ago I had a dream that my water WAS breaking. When I woke up, I was in the middle of some pretty intense Braxton Hicks contractions. They stopped after I went to the bathroom and drank some water, but I was freaked out for the rest of the night. My joints hurt worse this time around than they ever did with my other two children. Sciatic pain is out of control on some days. I’m STILL throwing up in the morning.  The baby is sitting low so my lower abdominal muscles hurt and so does my back.

My hormones are raging. I’m tired.

I’m still high risk. Doctors still measure the baby regularly to make sure everything is ok. But this thought is always looming: When’s the other shoe gonna drop?

And then… I failed my gestational diabetes test. Barely. That was the straw that broke the camel’s back. It’s just one more thing. And when, on God’s great earth, am I supposed to emotionally deal with it?

The other day I joked to some of my coworkers that we should start a new segment called “Bitch with Ditch”. You know… offer people a chance to vent with me, then we’ll end it with a 2 minute meditation session so we can all just let go of that anger. Maybe I need to take my own advice. Find some quiet time. Settle down and sit with my feelings… then when I’m done, let them go. Because the reality is, most of these things are out of my control.

If I need to find support, I’ll get it. I know first hand that depression is a real thing. I struggled while I was pregnant with my son and then after. For now, I think it’s time to focus, just a little bit, on me.

Partial contractions, stuffy nose and a very active baby!

22 weeks! About a week and a half and baby reaches viability!

I’m definitely bigger now than I was with my first. In fact this pregnancy has been very different from the others. Aren’t they all?!

When I was pregnant with my 6-year-old, it was the first pregnancy I had where I carried a baby past the first trimester. My daughter was in my right uterus, the bigger one. As it stretched, I don’t really remember it contracting in weird places throughout the second trimester… but to be honest, I was pretty overwhelmed by the entire thing. EVERYTHING was new. It could have happened, but I was so concerned about a bat colony that had made its way into our house, a hemorrhoid that needed surgery and my emergency cerclage that I easily could have missed it.

Those partial contractions, however, are happening with this pregnancy. I compare it to that “first” one because this baby is in my left uterus. That uterus has never been pregnant before, it’s never been stretched by a growing human. But this time I’m a veteran. The bat colony no longer exists, I’ve figured out how to keep the hemorrhoid situation under control, and this is my third go around with a cerclage. Perhaps now I’ve allowed myself to notice different things.

My high risk doctor says it’s TOTALLY NORMAL. And, to be honest, these contractions have been happening for a few weeks now. What I mean by “partial” is that it’s a small part of my uterus that gets tight. I promise you’re freaking out right now more than me.  Sometimes it’s on the left, sometimes it’s on the right, sometimes it’s high, sometimes it’s low. It does not hurt, but it’s a little uncomfortable and does cause me to pause for a moment, especially if it’s low. I manage it by rubbing my belly, giving it a little massage, and in a few seconds it goes away. My doctor says that it’s just that organ trying to “warm up” for the real thing. Most days I don’t notice much, but some days it happens a lot. Today was one of those days.

Unfortunately, today it took my breath away a bit and a couple of my coworkers and viewers noticed it on the air. I apologize! It doesn’t help that this pregnancy has also caused my nose to be constantly stuffy. Plus, this baby is measuring a full week ahead of schedule, so it’s growing quickly and taking up more space. All of those things are making it more difficult for me to manage my breath at times. I, sincerely, appreciate everyone’s patience.

For now, the cerclage is holding wonderfully. Baby looks healthy every time we peek at him or her. And the baby is kicking like CRAZY! I love it. 🙂 My four-year-old son likes to listen to the baby. He’ll put his ear on my belly while the baby kicks. He might get a swift kick to the face, but says he can hear it. LOL

My belly is getting high enough that acid reflux is a big issue this time around. Medicine is helping, but if I’m not careful it will make me sick… which by the way, is still happening every morning. YAAAAAAAAYYYYY.

Coming up next week, I get to see the baby again! My high risk doctors are doing growth scans once a month. They want to make sure that when growth does slow down, the baby is still getting enough nutrients. They believe that growth slows more significantly because the umbilical cord and placenta are not as efficient as they were earlier in the pregnancy when the baby wasn’t taking up so much space.  Both my daughter and son were fast growers at first, measuring well ahead of schedule, then quickly falling behind during the third trimester. While both were small, they were both very healthy so that’s good!

This baby looks to be following in big brother and sister’s steps. He or she is measuring a full week ahead of schedule! We’ll see how that growth has continued next week.

 

Week 19: pickles, string cheese and the baby’s kicks

Okay, it’s not the greatest picture! But this is what happens when there’s nothing but blue lights above your desk at work!

The week 19 bump is out in its full glory. I’ve gotten all the comments ranging from “Your bump doesn’t look like it’s growing too much.” to “When are you due again??” implying that the bump is huge. It is sometimes hard in the moment to process and emotionally deal with what people say to you, especially when you are pregnant. But I’ve learned a lot about myself in the last 5 years. My life has been a little bit of a roller coaster, and I’ve learned where I get my value. I’m okay with my body and how the baby is developing. My doctors are okay with those things too and they see me every 2 weeks. So people can have their opinions and that’s all that they are. Opinions that live in their space, not mine.

My high risk doctors want to see me every two weeks to monitor my cervix length and the stitch. The stitch doesn’t hurt as much as it did the first couple of weeks after I got it done. THANK GOD. As of two weeks ago, my cervix looked great, too! I still have my moments. I still get tired and every once in a while a part of my uterus will get uncomfortable, almost like a small part of it is contracting, but I’m told that is ALL normal. It was also nice to hear “There’s no such thing as crying wolf. We’d rather you call every time, us check it out and it be nothing, than you not call and it be something.” So I’m taking it one day at a time.

Something cool happened this week, too. I’ve been feeling the baby kick since about week 16. This week the baby kicked hard enough that my daughter was able to feel it. She was laying next to me watching tv when the kicks came on. They felt stronger than usual, so I put my hand where I thought they were and, sure enough, I felt them! So without alerting her I just took her hand and placed it on my belly. She jumped off the bed as soon as she felt the kicks and ran to the other room to tell her brother and her daddy. It was exciting for both of us. She was only 21 months old when her brother was born, so this is a brand new experience for her. She’s been asking when she’ll be able to feel the baby kick for a while. Unfortunately the kicks stopped when her brother came to check it out… but he’ll experience it soon enough!

I am also excited to say that my appetite has gotten a little better! Anti nausea drugs and Tums are mostly to thank for that! My favorite foods at the moment are pickles and string cheese. I’m not a big pickle fan in “real life” either, so devouring an entire jar of pickles in one sitting is a new one for me. They’re delicious and don’t make me sick. #winning.

On a final note, I cannot believe I’m almost half way through this pregnancy. Parents of 3 keep telling me that having 3 is “a lot”. A lot of challenges, but also a lot of fun. I’m sure it will mean a lot of changes for our family. I’m trying to predict how the kids will handle it. I’m worried about how the kids will handle it, so I’m doing my best to get ready. No matter what, this little bean will add so much more love to all of us in 2019.

 

An acute awareness of time

Last week, as a preventative measure, my doctors stitched my cervix shut. The surgery was quick, successful and we are hopeful this pregnancy will hold longer than the last. My son was born at 35 weeks.

For my last two pregnancies, my cerclage was put in at 19 and 22 weeks respectively. They were each considered an emergency cerclage. The surgeons did not have much cervix to work with, and it was late enough in my pregnancy that they also needed to give me an extra drug to keep my uterus from contracting.

The hope is that by having the stitch done earlier, doctors would have more cervix to tie shut and the pregnancy last longer. I guess only time will tell! I’m still not moving around all that quickly, but I am off all my pain meds and am starting to feel the baby kick!

I’ve been back at work since Monday and am steadily feeling better every day. I get exhausted pretty quickly as my body continues to heal, but I’m hopeful that will continue to improve!

Honestly, it needs to. About a week before the surgery I had finally had enough of the disorganization of my daughter’s room and decided to start clearing it out. Mainly, of clothes.

So here I present you with clothes I found in my daughter’s room. She’s six. These sizes range from 18 months to 4T. Clearly, a #mommyfail.

We don’t want to get rid of the clothes (which is also driving me nuts) because we have decided NOT to find out the sex of the baby. This baby will be a surprise on the day he or she arrives! I’m kind of excited about that. It was my husband’s idea. We found out for both our daughter and our son. Since we have one of each we figured, why not wait! We are clearly over-prepared with clothing. I haven’t cleaned my son’s room out in a looooooooong time either. And my daughter has the rest of her stash in bins in the basement. I just have to get over my urge to purge until the baby arrives.

When I told my younger brother about this he said, “Uh oh. Are you sure you’re not nesting already? I’m not sure that’s a good thing.” I thought about it… and my answer is still no. It’s more an acute awareness of time. I’ve been on this train a couple of times before. I know my energy level.(It’s not great) I can get one project done a day. We just finished a house remodel. We’re unpacking from that, have my daughter’s room to organize, my son’s room has to move down the hall and get decorated and furnished, the baby’s room needs to be redecorated and rebuilt, and we all still have to live our normal lives! I’m 16 weeks along in my pregnancy. I realize that’s not that far. But I’m pretty sure I won’t make it to 40, and there are only so many weekends left before this baby gets here.

I’m hopeful we can finish it all, but I can’t guarantee that will happen. We’ll be okay if it doesn’t, we’ve managed before.