Monday, June 27, 2011

Summer Plans

I have decided to turn over a new leaf tomorrow and start getting up to shower before Rob leaves for work, instead of staying in bed until after he leaves, often with a child or two who has joined me. There has been quite a bit of laziness around here since preschool ended and our schedule opened up into its lovely summer spaciousness. Not showering before Rob leaves results in me turning on TV for the girls while I shower and just a really slow, unproductive start to our day in general; watching TV so frequently in the morning just isn't ideal. And it's not like I'm getting a lot of really restful, restorative sleep during that time anyway.

Ugh, pregnancy-induced sleep troubles... I'm definitely getting to that point, 30 weeks pregnant now, down to two months and a few days until my due date. I am in general getting to "that point", actually-- swelling, heartburn, restless legs, BEING VERY LARGE. I have had my first moments of thinking, "Wow, I am really looking forward to not being pregnant anymore." It's so interesting what one's mind and body does through this whole process. In my first trimester this time around, I had anxiety and actual fear about doing the labor/birth thing again. This was new for me; I don't ever remember feeling literal dread and fear about labor and birth before. I went back and read my birth stories with Grace and Violet and I felt apprehension and dismay about having to do that again. The intervening months have changed my perspective, though, and now I would be perfectly happy to push an 8 or 9 pound baby out of my-- well, you know-- in exchange for not being pregnant anymore. And it won't be very long before I will be all AAAAACK GET HIM OUT OF ME CAN'T BE PREGNANT ANYMORE and would be open to the idea of actually cutting into my abdomen to get him out, if it came to that. So take that as you will; the characteristics of pregnancy are such that eventually options that once struck fear in my heart now seem like not-half-bad ideas. Biology, man-- it's like magic.

I do still have some anxieties, of course-- two main ones. 1) With Grace, my water broke and then nothing happened. I know in my mind that this is very unlikely to happen again (one's body tends to get things going much more easily/quickly after the first time around) but I still sort of dread it. The OB practice I was with at the time would give you 24 hours to go into labor after rupturing membranes and at that point (when I was still having no real contractions and was not dilated at all), we started on a full-on pitocin induction and constant monitoring and all that, and almost ended up with a C-section. It was... not very pleasant and I really don't want to do that again. (With Violet, my membranes didn't rupture until I was fully dilated and about to push, in case you're curious.) 2) I reallyreallyreallyreally hate having an IV and the thing most likely to make me get one would be if I turn out to be positive for Group B strep. For the uninitiated, this is a strain of bacteria that can live in the birth canal (among other places) and cause a serious infection in the baby. If you have it (they test for it around 36 weeks) they give you IVs of antibiotics during labor so that the baby gets the drug and won't get infected during birth. I am not cavalier/dismissive/fearless enough to refuse the antibiotics if I am positive for GBS, but oh, how intensely I hope I am not because being able to labor untethered and comfortable is SO much better. In fact, I dislike having an IV so much that I am probably going to indulge in some magical thinking and try some old-wives-tale type preventative things before my GBS test. How's that for logical analytical decision-making?

So I have big plans for getting up and showering earlier every day, and also I have plans to be more intentional with Grace and some reading and handwriting this summer. We haven't been very consistent with that and she is actually showing excitement and interest about it, so I am going to try to invest some more time in that. When I think back to that testing she did for the magnet programs, I am sort of puzzled that she could score so highly when she wasn't really reading at the time. She does better now with sounding out words, but at the time she wasn't able to smoosh sounds together to read a word. I guess that the tests weren't really testing skills like that but "ability", whatever that means? I don't know.

The past two weeks got swallowed up with swimming lessons and although I still find this somewhat inexplicable, I was unable to do much of anything else besides get us to the pool with all our gear and sunscreen and packed lunches, and then back home again with baths and laundry and the post-swimming routine. Violet's skin turns out to be pretty sensitive to the chlorine so the bath and laundry and all that was necessary, even if it did suck away the last bit of my energy every day. Being at the pool was soooooo lovely, though. It really helped with my swelling and I felt much more comfortable on those days; we shall have to dedicate many days this summer to the pool, even though that session of lessons is over. I might do more lessons for Grace; she did really well and can actually swim now. She can't yet take a breath without stopping (so here is what she does: swim swim stop stand breathe swim swim etc.) but she can actually propel herself forward in the water and looooooves it. Violet, on the other hand, spent the entirety of the swimming lessons yelling in protest. She is not afraid of the water and she is perfectly capable of doing everything the teacher wanted her to do, but she DID NOT WANT TO. She didn't want to be part of the cute group of toddlers playing games and getting their heads wet and blowing bubbles and whatnot; she wanted to go do what SHE wanted to do, which now includes going off the diving board. "I need to stand up there," she points. "I need to jump." I think she will do better with swim lessons next year at 3 and 1/2 when we can explain to her that if she wants to swim in the deep end and go off the diving board, then she needs to do what her teacher tells her to. There is not so much reasoning to be done with her at 2 and 1/2. It's comical how different she is at this age from Grace. Grace has always had such an instinct for participating and joining and doing what a teacher says, while Violet is independent and her own person and yes, sometimes, recalcitrant. It does make me wonder if keeping Violet home from preschool for another year of maturity and learning discipline at home might end up being a really good idea after all.


Eva said...

Wow, I can imagine that it must get very tiring the third time around. I'm sure you'll do great with the birth, and don't feel guilty for making choices that will alleviate things for you, that's what modern medicine is for.

Wow, the thought of ONE day of pool with two girls and a huge belly makes me dizzy, let alone many. I am amazed that you are considering doing it the whole summer. Clap clap.

amydove said...

So I realize that this is a total downer, but one of my friends just posted it to facebook and I keep thinking about it and how important it is for everyone to read. If you are going to spend all summer at the pool it is a good thing to keep in mind.
"Drowning Doesn’t Look Like Drowning"