Sunday, November 30, 2008

New Star Trek Movie! EEEEEEEE!

I know some of you may have seen this trailer already, but I'm putting it up anyways. I CAN'T WAIT for this movie to come out! I think the cast is terrific, but I have no idea who the Kirk actor is. I've seen Zachary Quinto, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, John Cho and Zoe Saldana before, but never even heard of Chris Pine. Apparently, I don't get out often enough any more.

My one beef with this movie is with Paramount. Up until quite recently, I thought that this movie was to be released Christmas 2008, and was all geared up to go and watch opening night. Now I find out it's being released May 8, 2009. I'm going to have a 1-month old baby by then! Boooooo on Paramount! They should have consulted me first!

Chistmas Tree!!

This past Friday, we bought a tree and put it up, and decorated it. It's hard to see but all the ornaments except for the balls and one Christmas angel (that I friend of mine made for me years ago) are all handmade and bought from a Ten Thousand Villages store. This is the first Christmas tree in probably at least 10 years I've put up, and definitely the first since getting married.

I'm quite a Scrooge when it comes to Christmas. As and adult, all I could see were people getting stressed out, people spending way too much on things that other people didn't particularly liked, and a general expectation of people having to buy gifts for others, etc. Generally, this holiday was getting too materialistic and too wasteful for my tastes.

I mean, how many times you were given something, and while you were taught to be gracious and accepting, deep down inside, you didn't like it, it was going to go into a regift pile, put aside to be forgotten, or eventually, just thrown away (and then in my mind, I cringe at the thought of yet another item going into our landfill). I've been through all these things with my gifts, which is why as a general rule I don't give gifts any longer unless it cash or a gift card, or something that's consumable or recyclable.

However, I'd found myself this year reflecting on my stance on Christmas, and thinking to Christmases past when I was a child. Christmas was fun, magical and wonderous. I don't know if it's the preggo hormones in me, but I was becoming somewhat sentimental, and discovered that I wanted to at least recapture that for the kid, and also teach him/her a little of what Christmas is really about. The practical side of me said that since I had pretty much no ornaments, it would be easier for me and more economical if I bought them this year, and re-engage my tree trimming skills now than a year from now when I have figure all this out and keep an eye open for a crawling baby that was going to threaten to tip the tree over.

I also wanted to be more environmentally friendly with the tree, hence we trudged down to our local garden centre and bought a real tree, one that can be recycled. The ornaments that I'd picked from Ten Thousand Villages, I wanted to make certain that they would last us for a while (we also spent wayyyy more than I was intending, oops!, but it's promoting sustainability for others, which is a good thing). It's not very big (it's probaby not quite 6 feet tall), and it partially blocks the view of the TV, but I love my little tree. I'm starting to get excited about Christmas again.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


I'm 20 weeks today! I have to say that other than the nausea (no actual throwing up thank goodness!) and the SI joint pain, which comes and goes, I've had a relatively smooth pregnancy. Everything looks good so far with bebe, and I haven't had too many other pregnancy symptoms (cross fingers). I still get slightly nauseated in the evenings when I'm tired. I still have some food aversions when I eat (which may be psychological at this point because I was so scare before that some foods would kick the nausea into high gear). But no hemorrhoids (cross fingers), no constipation (cross fingers), and any heartburn I experience is very mild, and typically disappears in an hour or so (cross fingers). I still have upper back pain, but a large part of it I think is because I'm still sitting in front of the computer for many hours of the day, and I can't sleep on my back, so my shoulders are also in the same slumped position as if I was sitting in a chair.

The most uncomfortable thing for me right now is that my belly apparently doesn't like to be confined. Even when wearing my mat pants, which are very comfy, it squeezes my belly just enough so that not only is my belly uncomfortable, but it triggers a weird gagging sensation. If it's not constricting clothing, then it's either the baby shifting or growing that will trigger the gag reflex. I gag several times a day, every day now. Hubby's gotten used to it, but he's still waiting for the day when I actually up-chuck. So not fun.

I'm also starting to feel the baby move. I've probably been able to feel it move for some time. I've been told it's been told that it's either a fluttery feeling or it feels like gas bubbles. The fluttering I've been feeling more of. The gas bubbles, harder to tell, not certain if it's the baby or my body passing gas. Ha. Can't wait for the kid to start kicking me in the ribs.

Anyways, I've started up a baby blog, so if you want to view it, email or message me! I'll post a belly pic up there too!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

My new mattress!

This mattress (not the bed frame or the pillows) finally arrived a few weeks ago after waiting almost four weeks for it. Let me tell you that the moment it arrived, my back was in bliss!

I blame the origins of my current SI joint problems on our old, soft, lumpy mattress. I think sleeping on that thing had put my hips out of alignment. And of course, sleeping on a sloping mattress didn't help my sleep at all.

My mid-and lower back pain have pretty much disappeared, thank goodness! My SI joint problems still persist unfortunately, because now I'm about 5 months along in my pregnancy, and I think the baby's sitting on a nerve or something. Sigh.

For those of you who don't recognize the bed, it's a Tempurpedic Rhapsody. It's somewhat more firmer than the Classic bed. It didn't take me very long to get used to it. Hubby took a bit longer, and even though he feels that his sleep isn't any different, we both have noticed that we don't feel the other move any more, and even hubby has noticed that he sleeps a little deeper now.

My only beef right now is that I'm a back sleeper, and I shouldn't be lying on my back for too long. I've been told that the weight of the baby may cut off some of the circulation to my lower body. But I've still found that I wake up on my back, and hubby's found me lying asleep on my back more than once. Old habits die hard! It's too bad I can't enjoy my bed properly for a few month more. Sigh.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Pregnancy and Exercise

When I told some people that I fully intend on continuing my regular exercise routine while pregnant (with the blessing of my caregiver of course), they gave me a look of disbelief. I haven't stopped exercising since I had gotten pregnant, and since I didn't even find out that I was pregnant until I was pretty much in my eighth week, I had been exercising for at least half my first trimester.

I'm still doing step class and cardio machines. I'm still doing strength training with machine and free weights. My trainer even has me working out on a Bosu to help me with my balance. I still do core exercises, sit ups, and even Pilate's.

However, the intensity has been brought down quite a bit. For instance, I used to do step class with one riser level under the step. This has been removed because I want to keep my heart rate down. I've also lowered the intensity while I do step. Many of the moves I do in Pilate's have been modified, or eliminated entirely. I'm not trying to increase my strength with the weight training so much so as to just keep what I have now, especially since I've been told I'd need that strength to push the baby out and when I have to lug around a 10lb kid for half the day. And as some have pointed out, the continual exercise is to help me maintain my health and not let it deteriorate. It's not the time for me right now to lose the weight, just to stay healthy.

This article also outlines some benefits and exercising mummy has for the baby. Research has shown that for the babies of moderately exercising mothers:
  • Infants are less cranky and less likely to have colic.
  • Infants have less body fat at birth. Some early research suggests that the benefits of lower body fat may translate into a reduction in the incidence of heart disease and diabetes in adulthood.
  • Children have greater neurodevelopment scores in oral language and motor areas when tested at age five.
Believe it or not, I found exercising helped stave off the nausea, even if was only for an hour or so. I still feel like a lump of lard if I don't regularly exercise. And besides the health benefits to myself and for the baby, I still covet and strive for the bikini body. Hopefully by this time next year....

Sunday, November 09, 2008

My thoughts on being pregnant... so far

For the record, I hate being pregnant.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm happy about having the kid, it's the whole pregnancy thing that I hate. While I know logically that being pregnant is part of the journey of having the kid, in my mind, they are two completely separate events. I wish babies are like sea monkeys: add some water to the eggs and within a few days, out pops a baby. None of this 9 months of incubation in my belly stuff.

Right now, I'm at 18 weeks 3 days (about 4.5 months), firmly entrenched in the beginning part of my second trimester, and I'm probably the least miserable to date. I normally don't like being uncomfortable, even slightly uncomfortable. Being pregnant has made me very uncomfortable. Not only uncomfortable, but incredibly frustrated.

I've always had my own bodily limitations that I've had to learn how to deal with over time. My entire life has revolved around making myself feel more comfortable so I can do things and function normally. But it's my body, and I've accepted that this is how I am, and have learned to work around its limitations. But as someone has put it, my body is not my own any more. For 9 months, it's the baby's. This is the root of my frustration: I can't treat my body as my own any more, and the uncomfortableness is something that I have to more or less put up with.

For instance, I've dealt with back pain for about 3-4 years now. Typically, after I go see my massage therapist (twice a month) or my chiropractor (at least once a month, sometimes more if I have a problem), I need to take a hot bath afterwords to soak away the soreness. This is the only guaranteed way I can feel better, and that includes getting a good night's sleep. I can't take hot baths right now, it's bad for the baby (and may cause a miscarriage, even in the 2nd and 3rd trimesters). So I have to put up with being sore, cranky, and not getting very restful sleep, which again, isn't good for the baby. It's even worse for me as my nausea still kicks in during the evenings if I'm tired enough.

My first taste of misery is what most people call "morning sickness", which is a total misnomer as my sickness reared it's ugly head late in the afternoon or early evening. Because of this, and from other women experiences, I've relabeled it to "pregnancy sickness". Fortunately for me, because my pregnancy sickness hit me late in the day, I was able to still be semi-functional at work, which made this really easy to hide from pretty much everyone at work. It also allowed me to eat enough during the day so that I wouldn't lose too much weight.

Not so fortunate was the feelings and experience of pregnancy sickness. You know when you have the flu, all you can focus on is how absolutely miserable you feel and that you want to throw up and die all the time? That feeling? Yes, that's what it was like for me from about weeks 7-8 to about week 15-16. There is a slight difference though, I ended up feeling absolutely nauseated and hungry at the same time, which was a bizarre feeling for me, and not one that I wish on any one, yet I know a lot of women can relate. During that time, all I was doing was going to work, maybe going to the gym, trying to eat dinner (and failing miserably), then just going to bed. I was so frustrated because I couldn't get anything done in the evening, and I'm a doer, I don't like not getting things done, I feel like a useless doorknob when that happens. And what I need to do still needs to get done, and I get frustrated.

Another victim of my pregnancy sickness was my poor hubby. I'm married to a really great guy who can pull his weight around the house, and who does pretty much all of the cooking right now. It was super hard for him to try to plan on what to cook for dinner since I was pretty much revolted by any form of animal flesh: beef, pork, fish, chicken, etc. There were days when I wouldn't know if I could eat something or not until it was set down before me. While I realised that it was the smell that was putting me off, I thankfully didn't toss my cookies. However, I would get this weird mental block, and I just "knew" that I couldn't eat it. Period. Didn't even have to try. Or the one time hubby made fish for dinner, and I couldn't even physically walk into kitchen, it revolted me so much. Hubby had to eat the whole dinner by himself. I still can't look at pictures of food or watch the Food Network, that's how much turned off from food I am. While the intensity of my nausea has finally subsided, my aversion to certain food stuff have not. I still have great difficulty eating some things like chicken and lamb, and it's so tough on hubby to try to be even more creative with the daily meals. Poor guy.

Then there's the gagging. I'm finding that when the belly is going through even a slight growth spurt, if there is even a little bit of pressure on my belly (aka pregnancy pants), I don't feel like I can breathe properly and causes a short bout of gagging, which, if you ask hubby, sound like I'm going to throw up. Now I'm not blaming the pregnancy pants, they're actually very comfy, and they are actually not that tight on my body; in fact the band around the belly is still a bit loose. It's just that my body does like any sort of pressure or slight feeling of being constricted by clothing: my belly wants to hang free. I'm finding that I'm gagging a lot and have to pull the band on the pants to have it stop and so that I can breathe semi-properly again. Trust me, neither sensation is comfortable.

Now I know I'm luckier than most who have been in my shoes: I haven't actually once thrown up, I was still able to eat some of the time, and I haven't had any real back pain yet (except for my SI joint, but I still think it's the result of a lumpy mattress and not my pregnancy). So all in all, my pregnancy's been better than most.

But that doesn't mean that I have to like being pregnant, nor enjoy not having much control over my own body any longer. I don't like the changes that my body is going through, and that I would have a different body that I would have to get used to all over again after this pregnancy thing is done and over with. I don't want to buy more clothing because my hips and butt has gotten bigger and my boobs have gone up a cup size. I want to have the bikini body still, and there is the constant resentment that I may never achieve that ideal. I am frustrated that I have to pretty much put my regular exercise routine on hold and alter what I do so it's best for the baby. And I live in constant fear of getting stretch marks. Knowing that it's a genetic thing and pretty much the luck of the draw hasn't stopped me from slathering my belly with rich moisturizer cream.

I don't enjoy being tired all the time. Whomever said that your energy returns during the second trimester lies. My energy hasn't returned to pre-pregnancy levels. I'm just not nauseated as much anymore so that I have enough energy to stay awake longer. I find that I still need to go to bed at an earlier time than normal. I constantly have to watch for signs that I'm not overtaxing myself, because I will pay for it later on, usually in the form of overtiredness, which leads to another bout of evening nausea, which leads to me having to go to bed early, and getting frustrated that I got nothing done again.

So yeah, I hate being pregnant.

(Sorry that this is such a negative rant, but I've been holding in these feelings for about 4 months now, and I had to get them out. Disagree with me if you want, but these are my feelings, and don't bother trying to change my mind, people have already tried. I'm determined to be miserable.)

Saturday, November 08, 2008

The Great Purge

The Great Purge is something that we do every year. Typically, we look through every single item (and I do mean every single item), that is in our house and garage and make a decision to either keep it, donate it, recycle it, or throw it out.

The Great Purge is normally done once a year, but we haven't done one in about 3-4 years because all my previous free time was devoted to Evil Homework. If you think that The Great Purge is a mere afternoon's worth of work, you are sadly mistaken. The Great Purge take typically four full afternoons. This time around Saturdays in November have been devoted to The Great Purge.

Because we haven't done a proper purge in a few years, we have a lot of things to get rid of. I'm surprised at the amount of stuff we're getting rid of, especially if you've been to our house before, it ain't that big. Plus the fact that we need to make more room for the bebe, we are being less sentimental and more discriminatory when we make our decisions to keep or purge. Hubby's also managed to find a few things that he thought he'd lost or had thrown out.

So far so go, we're more than halfway through our house, although the piles of stuff is making it difficult to shuffle things around. Next week will be the kitchen, downstairs bathroom and the storage area. But the most difficult part (and this tends to be the most difficult part every time we do this) will actually be our two-drawer filing cabinet. There has been a constant debate in this household as to how much paper records to keep. Hubby wants to keep more, I want to keep less. Nonetheless, this particular part of The Great Purge, can cause marital discord if we don't set ground rules up first. And you'd never thought people would fight over a bunch of pieces of paper.

Anyways, wish us luck. I'm really hoping (crossing fingers) that we'd be done by next weekend, but history has shown that this is rarely the case.

(As a Public Service Announcement, I've found out that Future Shop actually take old CDs in for recycling. This is awesome news because when we went through our pile of media CDs (non-music, computer software CDs), we found about 50 or so that we had to throw out. Anything that we can recycle is better than throwing it in the land fill.)

Sunday, November 02, 2008

The REAL reason why I've gone AWOL

Well, I'm hell bent and determined to start blogging again. But first to catch you guys up on what's been happening in my life for the past few months.

  • Wrote up my report for Evil Homework. This was to be the final piece of my schooling for my bachelor's degree.
  • Handed in report May 1
Second Half May
  • Went on our Southern England-Rome trip. Yes, I still have post up reviews and pictures of the trip. It will happen. Promise.
  • Found out I failed my big project (aka the report, Evil Homework and three years of my life down the drain).
  • Talked with my advisor about my options. Was told that I had to do a rewrite.
Rest of June, July, and most of August
  • Great efforts undertaken to re-write my report.
  • Handed in report near the end of August. I also had a bit of a minor shock when I handed it in, but will not get into the details as everything ended up working out in the end. But still not happy with how it was handled.
Sometime mid-July
  • I got knocked up. Yes, here is the real reason why I took a hiatus from blogging. More to come...
  • I'd actually missed my period near the beginning of August, but I tend to be notoriously late, so didn't think much of it. I was under a certain amount of stress and despondency because of Evil Homework, so thought that was the cause of my period being late.
  • Mid-August, started noticing signs of pregnancy eg I didn't want to eat foods I had no trouble eating before, was tired, feeling sick, my boobs were getting bigger, I peed a lot, etc. I decided not to pee on a stick yet because I knew if I did test positive, I would have immediately stopped focusing on said report, which would not bode well.
  • Late August: I was just finishing my report. Hubby was a trooper and helped me with the final edits, which was awesome, because I by that time was so nauseous and tired that I'd pretty much stopped focusing on it. Finally handed in report.
  • August 27th: Finally peed on a stick. It came out positive right away. The box said I would have to wait up to 2 mins to get a result. I think because I was now about 8 weeks along that my hormone levels were pretty high. And thus, my test show positive the moment it hit the right spot on the test.
  • End of Aug beginning of Sept: Went to Calgary.
  • Finally saw the doctor after coming back from Calgary
  • Sept 6: Went for a dating ultrasound. Radiologist said that I was 9 weeks, 2 days by then. Also went to a wedding that day, and it was a huge challenge to hide the fact that I was pregnant. Nausea was hitting me big time by the time the main course came around.
  • Mid-Sept: received noticed that I'd passed Evil Homework and finally have all my credits for graduation. Yay!
Rest of September - October
  • Other than work and started reading up on baby stuff, mostly slept and felt nauseous. Went to the gym when I could.
  • Nausea mostly disappeared later in October.
So there you have it. What I've been doing for the last 6 months or so. I decided long before we had even started trying that I wanted to go the midwife route. So far, the experience has been okay, but nothing stellar, but that will be a separate blog post. I'm also looking into cloth diapers and yes, I've been exercising pretty much my entire pregnancy. Also will be separate blog posts going forward.

So far, other than the nausea and the tiredness, it hasn't been a very exciting pregnancy, which I suppose is a good thing. I did injure my right SI joint, and while I know this is sometime common in pregnancies, I don't think the main reason why it was injured was because I was pregnant. It has something to do with a soft, lumpy mattress. Again, another future blog post.

I will be starting up a separate blog for the bebe, so all pictures, including ultrasound and belly pics, will be posted there. I had finally scanned my dating ultrasound picture a while ago, but was too ill and too tired to do more than that.

Going forward, my blog will probably be a lot of ranting, random thoughts and information about being pregnant, having a baby, and being a parent. I'm still hoping that my thoughts will be a little more than just that, but I can only focus on so many things right now.