Wednesday, January 10, 2007

40 Weeks

This morning, after dropping Ellie off at school and enjoying my weekly visit with my OB, I took my writing sample to School #1 - application complete. A few minutes later, on the way to pick Ellie up from school, I put my writing sample into the mail for school #2 - application complete. Applications for schools #3 and #4 are due a few weeks from now, so . . . pressure's lessened! I can take a couple of days off. Perhaps to labor and deliver, for instance.

Today was my due date, which is of some importance because my doctor is reluctant to let me go too far beyond it. Fortunately, our talk of an induction next week quickly became talk of a non-stress test and ultrasound for size instead. He acknowledges the concerns with both tests, but feels they do offer some value.

And . . . there's some concern about this baby's size.

See, apparently most women measure about a centimeter a week for fundal height during pregnancy (from the pubic bone to the top of the uterus) until about week 33 or 34. Around then, it starts tapering off.

Not only have I been measuring ahead of dates, the growth rate has not slowed significantly. My freakishly large belly has continued to grow so that I'm currently measuring 42 weeks. I do have a family history of measuring large and having normal sized babies. But there's still some concern here. So. Maybe a big baby, maybe just a really really big belly.

I had some professional pregnancy photos taken recently, and they are amazing. I mean, this belly . . .

At church last week, a woman sitting down the pew from me suggested that I take my belly up for the Chat with the Children, because surely it was big enough. Hah! No, really, it was funny. Another woman congratulated me for having the nerve to wear plaid (a skin-tight jumper, because even my too-big-everywhere-else maternity clothes strain over this belly). For the first time ever, my belly button is actually an outie. It's impressive, amazing, and commented on everywhere I go, all day, every day.

So I asked my doctor which home-grown induction methods actually work. He suggested only one that is at all proven. So. Paul's brushing his teeth. This belly and I better go intercept him before he falls asleep.

Tomorrow we'll try Mexican food, Splenda, and probably more of the doctor's orders, if things don't get moving on their own. Pleasant dreams!

Sunday, January 7, 2007

No News is Good News

Ellie was due on Wednesday, and I went into labor the preceding Friday evening. New Baby is also due on Wednesday, so it wasn't a big surprise when I started having unmistakable signs of labor late Friday night. After an hour or two, I woke Paul up.

I wasn't ready! I told him. It really hurts! I told him. I need to go into the office for just and hour, and nail down the recommendations for my grad school applications, and . . .

Drink some water, he told me. Then he walked around the bed, picked up my glass of water, added a straw, and held it to my lips until I'd done so.

After we'd talked for a little while (who to call in the middle of the night to watch Ellie? How inconvenient that my mom was unusually far away that night, up in Michigan with my also-pregnant sister) the labor, surprisingly stopped.

And I slept. And all was well.

On Saturday, I had my pregnancy massage (ahhhhhh!) and went into the office for an hour. I accomplished everything I needed to accomplish, then headed home and worked hard on grad school applications. I've completed the online application for 3 of my 4 schools (one school's online application is down this weekend but it's not due until February 1, so I'm not concerned yet). I just need to read over my personal statement, write a teaching statement for one school, and polish my writing sample. Then it's all ready to go.

Which means that . . . I'm about ready to go!

Except, perhaps . . . I do have a project at work that I should do more on. And I need to send out a postcard notifying my neighbors of the upcoming annual trustees meeting. And I am behind on thank you notes and . . .

Well. I don't think it's ever possible to be done, or ready, do you?

Friday, January 5, 2007

2006 In Review

This is the first sentence of the first post of the month thing.

January: First thing: housecleaning!
February: I used to go see Ani Difranco twice a year, in Chicago and in St. Louis.
March: OK, I have a queue of draft post ideas as long as my arm, but they're going to have to continue to wait.
April: I have been off my game for a while.
May: I made a low-carb chicken pot pie for dinner tonight.
June: I sometimes take my childhood for granted.
July: One of my favorite things about Ellie right now is her generosity.
August: I went to the mall today with my mom and Ellie.
September: We'll consider this one prep work for our upcoming Disney trip.
October: Paul has started feeding Ellie All Bran in the morning, which I think is hilarious.
November: This morning, thanks to wonderful friends keeping her up late for us last night, Ellie slept in a little.
December: Yesterday, I passed a new pregnancy milestone.

Clearly, I need to work on my first lines. I think it would have been more interesting to look at the titles of the first posts for each month. They told more of a story.

In other news, I am 40 weeks pregnant, Wahoo! My due date is a few days from now, and I don't think I'll go too far over it. (My official due date is Wednesday, though the perinatal specialist gave me a due date of this Sunday.) Ellie too was due on a Wednesday, and I went into labor on Friday night for a Saturday morning delivery. We'll see what happens this weekend!

I took the GRE this morning. I didn't love the experience, especially since my intended 3 weeks of study in early November became two intense nights of study in early January. And there was a mix-up about the testing center that involved me arriving at the "wrong" place then having to drive across town and start more than an hour later than planned.

It will be interesting to see how my essays score; I feel like they went pretty well. I enjoy writing, as always, and have missed it of late (hello, blog!) The Verbal section was fun, though a bit rushed at the end, and I scored well on it (700 out of 800, 97th percentile). The "Quantitative" section, however, was a bomb. I mean, a real bomb.

With little time to study and no practice test, I gauged the time all wrong, only answering 18 out of 28 questions (and not even having time to fill in all Cs at the end - I just left 10 questions blank!). I remembered enough elementary math to bang through many of the problems . . . given enough time, which I clearly didn't have. For example, I needed to find the length of a line. I could make it into a right triangle, and I knew the length of one side and the measure of one angle of the triangle. It was a 30-60-90 triangle, and not enough information to use the Pythagorean Theorem. I remember just enough to know that there's a formula for the length of the sides of a 30-60-90 triangle, but not the actual formula. I mean, seriously! This is relevant how?!! I'm all about a test of quantitative reasoning, but remembering formulas from Jr. High School is just not where it's at, folks.

So. The GRE is done. I'm due soon. And now I'm about to approach a few people, hat in hand, to ask for last-minute recommendations for last-minute applications. Perhaps I'll learn something useful to assist me in the reapplication process next year.