I had my 32-week OB appointment this afternoon, also known as Round 2 of this game I’m playing called “Let’s See How Much I Can Freak Out My OB With My Bizarre Gastro-Intestinal System.”
The good news is that my stomach is gradually starting to get better. The drugs definitely seem to be helping in that regard, and I’m starting to get a shred of energy back, which I think is probably the best sign of all. I don’t quite feel up to my old workout regimen yet, but I managed to get myself out of bed, dressed, to the doctor’s office and back without feeling like I was going to collapse – and I even stopped for gas on the way home! And I didn’t fall over! So that’s optimistic.
However, I’ve also lost four more pounds in the past two weeks. This means that I now weigh the exact same amount that I weighed at my very first 8-week pregnancy checkup. I’d be lying if I said that a tiny part of me wasn’t a little bit happy about this news, because at this rate, I’m going to have virtually no pregnancy weight to lose. But the part of me that’s excited about it is the same part of me that finds fashion magazines interesting, so really, we should just ignore her because she’s a very shallow, superficial girl.
My OB said that she’d ideally like to see me gain ten pounds in the next 8 weeks, but she admitted that it’s probably going to be impossible at the rate that I’ve been going. I haven’t done the “1-2 pounds per week” weight gain yet, so there’s no reason to think I’m going to start anytime soon. Although I wasn’t anywhere close to being underweight when I got pregnant, the doctor is a bit concerned that if I give birth and end up weighing far less than my starting weight, I might be too weak to take care of the baby. So that’s no good. I’ve been drinking protein shakes and taking vitamins all along (because that’s just what we post-op gastric bypass folks do), but I’m going to start drinking more shakes (i.e., three a day instead of my usual two) and increasing my vitamin intake, just to be safe.
(And again, that tiny superficial part of me is happy to note that this is the first time in my entire life that a medical professional has ever encouraged me to gain weight rather than lose it. Silly, I know.)
My doctor also measured my belly and said that it’s totally in the normal ranges, so we have no reason to think that Baby Girl is suffering at all during this. However, just to be safe, she wants to do another ultrasound to make sure the baby’s growth is all progressing smoothly and according to schedule. I guess the idea is that if there’s a problem, it’d be easier to fix while she’s still in the womb, rather than after she’s born.
So I’ll be having another ultrasound next Wednesday (the 20th). I imagine that it’ll be kind of weird, since she’ll probably look a lot more like an actual baby now than she did back in September. If there are pictures to post, you know I will.
As for the childbirth class: it was a long day, and I slept horribly the night before, which made it that much worse. But the class itself was fine, I suppose. I’m always irritated by the judgmental undertones toward epidurals and other forms of pain medication, but I think that’s just part of living in the Northwest with all the hippies. The instructors did a pretty good job of staying neutral on the topic – one of the teachers had four kids, only one of them born without drugs. The anti-medication vibe was from the other women in the room. There’s such a huge trend here in favor of natural childbirth – or as they now call it, “unmedicated” birth. Whatever.
And yes, of course I’m well aware of the risks that come with an epidural. But I also don’t understand women who seem to need to prove something to themselves by enduring the highest degree of pain that a human being can possibly experience. I’m secure enough with myself to know that whether or not I use pain medication during childbirth is no reflection whatsoever on what type of mother I’ll be. Besides, it isn’t like the baby is really going to care one way or the other.
As for the birth video, which is when I thought I’d be splashing cold water on Dave’s face and slapping him back into consciousness, he watched the whole thing with rapt interest and afterward said, “that was pretty cool.” Shocked the hell out of me. (His reaction, that is, not the video.) Who knows, maybe he’ll be of some use when I go into labor after all.