28 Weeks Bumpdate

You guys, I feel so pregnant!

I'm officially in the third trimester and feeling the fatigue.  

The good: Just 12 more weeks until my due date!  My hair has never looked better. I feel like I'm getting really tuned in and connected to Nora's movements and schedule.  I love feeling her move.  

The less good:  My nose has started to expand at a scarily rapid rate.  It's getting wider everyday!  My back still hurts, but I've figured out some stretches that help.  I found some new stretch marks this week and I got a pimple, so the skin isn't doing so hot in the third trimester.  Probably the most annoying thing that has happened is that my pelvis feels like it's being ripped apart.  In a panic, I called my doctor and was assured that this is a totally NORMAL thing and that it just means my body is getting ready for labor.  The amount of NORMAL things that women go through to make babies is astounding.  Insomnia.  Peeing.  

Weight gain: 3 pounds total

Cravings: sugar!  I try not to give into this, but sometimes an apple with peanut butter does the trick.  

I truly do feel blessed to be pregnant with my second daughter, but it doesn't mean that pregnancy is easy!  I'm so excited to be in the home stretch now.  Not too much longer until I can hold Nora Kathryn in my arms.  

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First Trimester Must-Haves

Let me be honest, I don't have easy pregnancies.  They're high risk and usually pretty miserable.  I love being a mom, but being pregnant is not something I enjoy or look forward to.  Having had miscarriages as well, the first trimester is usually a time of a lot of anxiety for me.  That being said, these things I've collected here to show you guys are guaranteed to make your first trimester of pregnancy easier.

 

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1. Comfortable shoes.  If you're like me, your feet start to ache pretty quickly in the first trimester, as all those ligaments start to loosen up.  I need some serious arch support, but I don't want to spend too much on shoes that I really only wear when I'm pregnant.  These from Target do the job nicely and don't break the bank.  

2. Raw Prenatal Vitamins. Do prenatal vitamins make you sick?  Try one that is made from real food instead of synthetics.  It's much gentler on your stomach and more digestible.  

3. A good skincare routine. Holy hormones, batman, my skin does not respond well to pregnancy.  I can go into my pregnancy skincare routine in a different post, but to start with, this facial brush is a good one.  I can't afford the holy grail of skin brushes, the Clarisonic, at this point, but this is a nice alternative and I can vouch for it's quality.  

4. A meal replacement solution.  Morning sickness. All day sickness.  Most people will tell you to eat whatever you can keep down, but I also think it's important to keep getting nutrients that help you and the baby thrive.  These are my absolute favorite meal replacement bars.  They're crunchy and creamy, like a candy bar with a wafer inside, and they don't have that protein bar aftertaste that I can't stand.  Plus, you can get a variety pack like this for a reasonable amount of money and feel good about what you're eating.  

5. Peppermint Gum.  Peppermint naturally helps alleviate nausea, and this brand is a more natural alternative to the typical gums with artificial sweeteners like aspartame.  

6. Shea Body Butter from The Body Shop.  This is the creamiest body butter I've ever had.  I am plagued with skin that is extremely prone to stretch marks, but believe it or not, I haven't developed any new ones this pregnancy, and I attribute that to this lotion.  Also, the smell is mild and pleasant.  If you sign up for email coupons through The Body Shop website, you can usually pick this up for around $12.  

7. Diclegis.  With my first pregnancy, I threw up at least once a day for the first 20 weeks.  With this pregnancy, my doctor gave me a sample of diclegis and it worked wonders for me. I've still had a few times where it wasn't enough, but I had a much easier time this go-around, all thanks to this miracle medication.  If you're like me, you should ask your doctor about this stuff.  

8. A Fetal Doppler.  A lot of people will tell you this will bring more anxiety than good, but for my personality, this brings me a lot of peace of mind.  I've had this one for 3 years now and it works really well.  I use aloe vera gel instead of the ultrasound gel.  

9. A good pregnancy app. I like this one because it compares your babies size to unique animals instead of vegetables, and it updates daily instead of weekly.  There are tons of other neat things it has, and it's completely free.  

Ella's Seizure and an Update

A few months ago, our one year old had a seizure.  It was so out of the blue and unexpected, neither my husband or I knew what to think or feel.  The night it happened, we took her immediately to the children's emergency room near us.  There, her seizure was verified and we were set up with a pediatric neurologist to follow up with.  A few nights later, she had another episode.  In the weeks following, we have undergone several tests, including a routine EEG, a MRI under anesthesia, and most recently, a 24-hour EEG, inpatient.  The good news is, everything has come back normal.  Her brain is beautiful, and we aren't really sure what caused her seizures.  Part of me almost wishes we could find a problem to fix, but the majority of me is hoping that this is just a blip in her life, and all this can be in the past.  However, her neurologist says it's very rare for a child to have a one-off seizure, so I'm honestly not sure what to think.  Both Matthew and I are pretty set that medication isn't right for Ella, at this point.  We still have one follow-up appointment with her neurologist, but at this point, we have left no diagnostic stone unturned and we feel confident that she doesn't have an underlying brain issues.  Because of her traumatic birth, subsequent right sided muscle tightness, and gross-motor delay, we have both always wondered if she had lasting damage from lack of oxygen during her labor and delivery.  Thankfully, this doesn't appear to be the case.  We love her so much and she's such a special girl, our hope is that she can continue to thrive and progress with no more seizures! 

 Ella with her head wrapped during her 24-hour EEG 

Ella with her head wrapped during her 24-hour EEG 

I'm Pregnant!

Here we go again!  By the title, you can see, we are expecting baby TA number 2!  I'm really excited and I'm VERY happy to be 3 days away from the second trimester.  I had a very difficult pregnancy with Ella and while still difficult, this pregnancy is going a little better, thank God.  I thought I would do a quick recap of the first trimester and let you all know whats been going on! 

We very much wanted another baby.  I found out I was pregnant at twelve days past ovulation, or 3 weeks and 5 days pregnant.  It was a stressful week because Matthew got the flu!  I remember sitting with him in the doctor's office, looking at my toddler, knowing I was barely pregnant, and thinking about all the terrible ways this could pan out.  God touched my heart in that moment and I felt a peace come over me.  It would be ok.  We set Matthew up in the basement guest room, I went to the store and got two medications for him, we doused everything in Seventh Generation anti-bac and viral spray, and we got through it!  Matthew got better very quickly, in about 5 days total, and neither Ella nor I had as much as a sniffle.  

Then the next hurdle came:  I requested my progesterone to be checked with my HCG level around 4 weeks and it came back extremely low.  The level was actually considered non-viable, and I was counseled that miscarriage was nearly unavoidable.  I began aggressive progesterone suppositories two times a day.  Once again, fear took over and I felt strongly that God was using this pregnancy for something-I just didn't know (and still don't) what.   

At this point, I was beginning to get the severe nausea that I had experienced with Ella and my doctor gave me a medication called Diclegis.  Talk about a miracle!  Up to this point, I've only thrown up a handful of times, whereas with Ella, I threw up multiple times a day for the first twenty weeks.  

At eight weeks, we had an early dating ultrasound and saw the heartbeat: a strong 168!  Both Matthew and I were emotional seeing our little miracle on the screen.  

I'm thirteen weeks and four days at the time of writing this, and I stopped the progesterone four days ago.  So far, so good, and I'm still trusting God through it all.  I want to keep going with updates weekly at this point.  

Thanks for reading this far, and as always, I apreciate any prayers you want to send our way! 

Ella's 18 Month Update

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I can't believe my little girl is already a year and a half years old!  She's so perfect and precious to me.  Verbally, she is excelling.  She can say over fifty words confidently and will try to mimic any word we say.  I feel like everyday she learns something new!  Two of my favorite things that she says are flower and butterfly, because her little voice sounds so sweet.  She has started to string together some sentences, like "bad dog no" and "more milk please".  She asks for her favorite movie, Trolls, a lot.  Speaking of movies, this past month marks the first time she saw a movie!  We wanted to wait until she was 18 months old, as per the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendations for screen time.  We showed her the Little Mermaid, and she was very interested!.  She loves to make people laugh and has an amazing memory.  We recently switched her into a booster seat at the table and put her high chair into storage.  She still is a great eater, but is picky depending on her mood.  Her favorite food is cheese.  Ella does well in the church nursery on Sundays and loves to play near other children.  She still loves books and "reading" them to herself.  Her favorite toys are her babies and she carts them around with her.  She knows some colors, can count to three, and knows the first part of the alphabet.  I'm so proud of my litte girl!  She began physical therapy here in Denver last week with a nice and experienced lady named Barb.  We are hopeful that she will walk soon.  We just loved her therapy team in Las Cruces and were sad to leave them.  Barb has already said that she wants her evaluated for orthotics due to the way Ella pronates her feet inward.  It's hard to watch her struggle, but I've never known a toddler with such perserverance.  I'm exceedingly proud of her and I love being her mommy!

An Introduction

This is me.  Muffin maker.  Husband kisser.  Baby wrangler.  Dog snuggler.  I'm Katie and I live in Denver with my family: Matthew the husband, Ella the baby, and Mugatu and Lela, the dogs.  I couldn't be happier, and I want to use this space to document my musings on all things motherhood, wifehood, and just womanhood.  Thanks for stopping by my slice of the internet!

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