Friday, February 29, 2008

In Good Company...


Well, if it's not one member of the household barfing it's apparently another. Dylan yacked again big time (twice) last night. I heard it from the bedroom and went a running to see what the damage was. Of course it was all over the carpet and he spewed in front of his sisters (almost all over them...he's a projectiler)...so they went a running too cuz they are big time fraidy cats when it comes to vomit :) Kev got to Dylan first and the next yack happened all over the bathroom and into the sink...which wasn't a good choice since our counter in the kid's bathroom is covered in their "stuff"...so a spray of vomit went everywhere! Ugh. But, I have to say that I was soooooooooooooo thankful it all happened at night cuz there is no way I would have made it through cleaning that mess up w/o puking myself a couple times. Of course the clean-up meant Kev couldn't go to church b-ball again and that now he had a double/triple mess to clean up (Dylan had diarrhead all over earlier...I know TMI). So, things continue to be a joy around our household. Apparently Dylan is still under the weather and I'm guessing he got overzealous eating his pizza last night (his first real meal all week) and thus why he vomited so profusely. It's always something around here and I look forward to the day where we are vomit-free (which with our luck probably won't be til this new baby is a toddler cuz all our kids have reflux issues...don't you love my optimism lately :)). Praying for a better "puke-free" day today. Yesterday was pukeless for me, but I was still hovering over the potty a few times trying....

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Same old stuff...

Well, I keep hoping (actually praying) that I'll have some good news to share about me feeling good at some point in this pregnancy. In fact, I've even refrained from blogging lately cuz I figure that phrase "if you don't have something nice to say don't say anything at all"....well, it's starting to apply to this pregnancy and I know everyone must get tired of hearing my self-pity posts. But, as I've said before. I don't blog lately for the fun of it...mostly just to document this pregnancy so I will never forget the fun it entailed :)

As far as changes go...well, believe it or not...things have gotten worse. My "nausea only" has now turned into full fledged vomiting. Yesterday was a bad, bad, bad day. I'm not sure what brought it all on, but at lunch time I had one of the yummy (plain) chicken/noodle dishes that Kev has been making me (it's been one thing that has agreed with my tummy so he made me a big potfull this week)...anyway...I ate it for lunch and almost immediately started feeling horrible after. By naptime a couple hours later I was feeling worse and didn't even sleep cuz my stomach hurt so badly. By dinner I was almost in tears...the pain was bad, bad, bad. And then all of a sudden it happened...up came my whole lunch (6 hours after the fact). As nasty as that was I felt "good" for about 15 minutes after and since Kev had just made dinner I tried to eat that. Ummm...I knew that was a bad idea right away when it when down the hatch...my stomach hurt again...and up that came a couple hours later, which in all honesty was a relief to me as I was finally able to fall asleep after that vomit cuz I felt comfortable again. So, that was that...Vomit #2/#3 have come and gone. Or more honestly that was probably my first real vomit-fest of this pregnancy...since the first one was only clear liquid. Anyway...3 vomits is usually my magic number. That might sound funny, but with Dylan and Shelby's pregnancies I only vomited 3 times too and then I was done and feeling better a few weeks later. Today has been a vomit-free day (so far), but I'm feeling the tummy pain again so I'm not entirely hopeful. Not to mention I've been terribly, horribly dizzy and shaky today and I had some weird numbness in my neck and then my head/skull hurt for 10 minutes...I'm just a weird case of crazy symptoms lately.

Anyway...my prayer today is that maybe this vomiting stuff is a turning point for me...that maybe I'll be on the upswing soon. Some of you might know that my little (and only) bro gets married in about 2 weeks and although I'm excited for him and Candy I'm am very anxious about me making the trip and how I'm gonna survive outside our house and on fast food. I'm really, really nervous about it all. I'd like to be positive and say things might be better by then, but in reality I'll only be 14 weeks by then and usually my morning sickness hangs on a little past that. So, I'm starting to get nervous about traveling and trying to put on a happy face at a wedding where there will be lots of people I know and inside I'll be feeling like crap. I know the wedding's not at all about me, but since the kids and I are in it I would LOVE to feel better for it. Not to mention Hailey's b-day is a couple days later and then Easter is the next week. I just have to be feeling better soon!!!!! (and, yes, I am considering finally taking something for the nausea...my good friend, Vonna, recommended B6 (it worked for her twin pregnancy :)) and I'm all about trying a vitamin before some other med...so we'll see.....)

So...all that to say that I'm just exhausted. It's bad enough to feel sick for a couple days or a week, but to feel this way almost constantly for 6 weeks...well, I think anyone would be tired of it by now, so I feel I have a right to complain a bit. I have completely admitted defeat this week and we have had to rely more heavily on friends for help. If you know me, you know I hate asking for help, but I've been extremely thankful to our friends (Jill, Dave/Heather...thanks guys! :)) for helping taking Hailey home from church activities. I actually had to say "no" to some night activities (PTO/church) and I almost couldn't make it to Hailey's music program at school this week. Good thing it was only a half hour long or I sadly would have stayed home. I hate how this nausea is running my life lately. I want this part of pregnancy to be over for me! I need a change in pace and I know the kids and Kev do too. Kev has been amazing as ever. He leaves early every morning, gets home early every day, does ALL the dishes, laundry, cooking and cleaning (and yes, I do mean ALL!)...he is up late every night cleaning and I'm not quite sure how he does it, but he does and I am thankful beyond words. Hailey has been an angel too. Not only is she just nurturing to me in general, but she plays with Shelby every day after school when I'm feeling my worst and she has been doing laundry and dishes and making her own breakfast and lunches and has really stepped up at helping out. I think it's good for her, but at the same time I feel guilty that she's had to be like a mini-mom for our family. I love her to death and when I'm better she deserves a special day out with mom so I can thank her for all she's done. Shelby...well, she's been pretty sweet too, but not as quick to help. She has her moments, but she's 3 so I guess I can't expect much. Dylan...he's just been trouble...yesterday I found him in the kitchen with a knife in his hand. Needless to say that freaked me out...I guess we might finally have to install safety latches in the kitchen. Ugh. Not to mention he seems to find every treat and snack he can...he came to me the other day with a poptart in hand that he'd gotten out of the box and out of the sealed bag it came in...then later he came to me with 3 lollipops in hand (some already licked). Ugh. He is a handful, but what can I expect for a 2 year old boy. Not to mention he had the flu this past weekend...or some kind of bug...so he's been extra irritable and not sleeping much....actually none of us have been sleeping...I think there was one night where we were ALL up...and that never happens...usually at least Hailey sleeps...she's been up too with leg/growing pains. We're all out of sorts over here at the Steg household.

Well...that's been the downlow on things. Lots of other stuff going on and I still have tons of pics to share, but it's just too time consuming to post them and I just don't have the energy now. I need to lay down. Hope everyone is having a happy week and Happy Leap Year to ya'll. I realized today that we will have our 3rd leap year baby...Hailey and Shelby were leap year babies too...crazy stuff! I remember worrying with Hailey that she might be born on Leap Day if she came early...that would be a horrible b-day, in my opinion!

And my final thought for today: Has anyone ever noticed how many ads there are on TV for food?! Ok, I know that's a silly thing to post, but since I've been an avid tv-watcher for a month and half now I've noticed (with dismay) how like 75% of the commercials are for food. Now this is downright rough for me being pg as I admit that even ads on TV about food make me want to hurl more than I already want to. And what is up with every fast food place deciding that FISH is the best thing to advertise lately?? Ugh! Of all the crappy foods to show me on the television...come on people! Nasty! I actually have to look away or pull a blanket over my head so I don't see some of those nasty commercials. Yuck! :(

Saturday, February 23, 2008

I spoke too soon :(

Well, nevermind what I said yesterday about feeling better...that came back to bite me in the rear last night and today...I am feeling horrible like I have the last 5 weeks. Have I mentioned this nausea-thing is getting old and I am in need of some change...help! :(

Friday, February 22, 2008

Ice, Ice Baby!

Yes, I know that title dates me a bit, but it's a pefect description of our day today :( It's downright nasty outside :( I was actually gonna post earlier this week how fairly mild our winter has been (very little snow) and then wam, bam we get this nasty ice storm...not cool. I was kinda gloating inside lately cuz I see all our poor MI friends and the snowy winter they've endured...and, well, I must say I was happy to be living a little more down south where the weather is milder. Anyway...so all that to say that we have our first "snow day" today...and Miss Hailey is actually happy for once to not be going to school. I think that may have to do with her not feeling well the last month, but at any rate she slept in til 9 today (and also on Wed...there was a 2hr delay that day). So much for me getting out and doing some shopping today...not gonna happen as it looks like one big sheet of ice out there and those who know my FL blood know I don't venture out when weather is cold and nasty :( So, we are staying put today. Daddy ventured into work and it even sounded like he enjoyed himself in the treacherous conditions (he's a Michigander at heart...crazy man)...and he'll be doing some shopping for us later as Hailey has a sleepover b-day party tonight and we have yet to get a gift. So, thanks to daddy, Kev for again stepping up and helping out more than he should have.

So, our little group of 4 are being nice and lazy indoors today. I was gonna post earlier and say how great it was to just veg out and then Dylan decided to vomit all over the floor so I've spent the last half hour cleaning up puke and gagging my brains out over the smell. Go figure he had only drank two cups of milk and had a yogurt so you can imagine what a curdled mess that was. Not cool for a prego nauseous mama to have to clean up...what was that boy thinking?! Anyway...so I'm not sure what's up with that and if it happens again I'm gonna have to call Kev for some back-up. I can't possibly clean up other people's puke when I'm barely keeping my own puke in check. Though I will share with you (and maybe I shouldn't lest I jinx myself)...that I am actually feeling slightly better...not great, mind you, but better. Remember how I said I was feeling so ill on Tuesday for my appt...well, the next two days I actually felt sick in the mornings and less sick at night...so it's like things have flipflopped, but I'm much less gaggy (unless forced to clean up puke)...and I actually have been up and about much more in the evenings :) :) So, I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the sunnier days of less nausea are on the horizon, cuz it would be glorious to be feeling better by springtime! :)

Well, I just wanted to wish you all a happy weekend and a safe one for all of you who live up north and have to drive in this nasty ice stuff. Our weekend is sure to be fuller than normal, but maybe the weather will force us to slow down a bit...sometimes that's a good thing. Until next week...

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

1st OB Appt

Well, the first official OB appt was this morning and all is lookin' good :) (which I expected :))

Nothing too exciting to share really. It was a "lovely" full exam and I will admit that part of it didn't go well for me. I was already feeling very nauseous (which is actually rare in the morning for me)...so by the time I was sitting on that cold table in my lovely pink paper gown thingy...well, I was shivering and then when the doc did my exam I got really hot and almost passed out (of course, I was laying down already, which was good)...but I almost blacked out. Kev noticed cuz he asked if I was ok and said I looked like was gonna cry. The doc must have noticed too cuz he said a few times how tired/sick I looked. Great. So, I made it through that event and hope to not do that again for a year (the pap part). I'm not sure what the heck is wrong with me today...I'm not usually so sick in the AM...which means the afternoon and evening will be especially "stellar", I'm sure :( Anyway...so all that "good stuff" looked a-ok. The only exciting part of the visit was hearing the baby's heartbeat :) It sounded great. I make it a point not to ask for numbers cuz I don't like people (or myself :)) guessing boy or girl from the heartbeat, so I didn't ask :) But, it sounded good just thumping away. And I (or my uterus actually) is measuring right at 10/11 weeks...so we're good there. My weight was down 2 1/2 lbs...which is honestly more than I expected. I even tried to eat more for breakfast this morning...not to mention I had a large milkshake last night (that didn't agree with me...see previous post about lactose issues :))...and I even wore my shoes on the scale...how the heck can I weigh less than I think I ever have? I'm still baffled how I'm losing weight, cuz my tummy is bulging...but I suppose I need to work on eating more as soon as I'm feeling better...we gotten fatten me up, which honestly is never a prob. with my pregnancies...I gain at least 40lbs :)

Anyway...so that was that...Dylan went with us (as he will with most appts) and he did ok considering we waited a bit. Good thing we brought a ball to amuse him :) He seemed fascinated by mommy's pink paper clothing and he especially liked the forceps where mommy's feet went :) He was a trooper! Oh...and I did indeed ask about the nausea...actually that was my only pressing question. And it pretty much sounds like I need to wait it out. He did offer me some meds, but I refused. It's not that I want to be a martyr for the cause but I've already have one child with a birth defect (Shelby's heart)...and I don't want to take any meds that I don't really need just in case (yes, I'm VERY cautious about meds during pregnancy...I've seen the worse scenarios in the NICU so I'd rather endure the nausea than see my child come out with a birth defect possibly due to something I did)...that's not to say that most of the nausea meds probably aren't safe, but I figure if I'm keeping food down I'm not that bad (though Kev might disagree :)). So, as much as I want quick relief from the nausea I am not going to get it. My doc did assure me that usually with each pregnancy the nausea does get worse as does the moodiness and exhaustion. I'm not sure I'm sold on that, but it sounded good :) And he assured me that my nausea should be at it's worse right now (ummm...ya' think?!) So, hopefully by my next appt in 5 weeks I'll be happier and nausea-free. We'll see......for now I guess we all endure (and I do mean "we"...cuz Kev and the kids are suffering too in their own ways :))....Kev did ask about me taking some B6, but the doc said that will probably only give "some" relief and that the nausea will still be there. I'm not sold on more vitamins cuz vits make me gag anyway...so I think I might just sit tight and enjoy my nausea-filled days. We'll see....

I really had no other pressing questions aside from my hemangioma (tumor on my liver), which will need to be monitored via u/s soon and, of course, I made a point to ask about permament birth control :) The doc told us we'd discuss that later cuz it didn't look like I could handle that info now (again, he noticed how sick I looked :)) and he did mention that now (when I was so nauseous) was not a good time to talk about permament things....hmmm...does he think we need 5 kids?! I assured him my mind was made up on that point whether I was puking my brains out or not!!! So, that will be discussed at a later date (don't worry, Mom :))

So, there's the lowdown on the first appt. I know it all sounds thrilling to ya'll :) I'm just glad to be home now and resting a bit. I am just not doing well today. Hope you all are staying warm and having a great week....

Oh...and due date is still Sept. 15...the doc had some questions about my LMP but since I had no idea when my last period was he is just gonna go with my u/s due date. I really don't think that one's correct either and if I'd have to guess I'd actually say Sept. 12/13...but you know due dates...they are never exact anyway, plus I always go over....so for now Sept. 15, it is, I guess :)

Monday, February 18, 2008

1/4 of the way there!

Well, folks I am 10+ weeks now...and by all standards that should make me 25% of the way there (and, yes, I am counting down...I need to do something to get through the days lately!). So, that should mean I will be feeling better in about 4 weeks (keep your fingers crossed for me!). Am I better now?! Nope, not all all...and to be honest I quite possibly am worse :( Now, I'm not gonna go complaining and moaning and groaning, but the gagging has gotten worse and smells seem to bother me more and by the evening time I am usually curled up for good in bed usually with tears falling down my cheeks...not b/c I'm sad, but b/c the gagging gets so bad I physically tear up. The kids and Kev can vouch for how bad it gets...they saw one of my bad gagfests on Sat. The ones that usually happen cuz I went over my 2 hour limit of not eating. Poor Hailey was very worried about me....but then when she saw I was about to vomit she ran for the woods (so to speak)...she's not a vomit person...the sound of wretching makes her gag big time. Anyway...so the times have not gotten any shinier. I spent about 75% of this weekend just sitting in bed watching TV...never have I been so tired of watching TV...I think I've seen every TV movie imagineable not to mention I'm very caught up on politics and usually I'd rather pull my teeth out than to hear about elections and government :) So, I guess I relaxed and I guess that was good...but almost the whole time I was in bed I was so nauseous I thought my head was gonna explode. It's just been hard...I'm still admitting to that. I think my one day of escaping captivity (V-day) did me in. I won't go into the antics of the day, but it was one of our normal, busy days...the ones that I now avoid with a passion cuz I can't handle being in public past 12 noon cuz gagging in public is not my idea of a fun time. But, I wanted to party hard with both the girls at their V-day parties and that meant I was up and going all day long...I wanted to skip Hailey's so badly cuz by the time her party came around it was naptime and I was seriosly holding my head up to keep from falling asleep...but I persevered and I felt good about my day in the "real world" again :) Of course the busy day out and about meant that by the time Kev got home at 4pm I was ready for bed and I do believe I slept from 5-9pm...so much for a romantic v-day :) Anyway...but that day wore me out and I was plum tuckered out til now (or actually I'm still tired). Not much else going on, but the regular stuff. I realize I've been lacking in pictures lately as well as any "fun" info about the kids and I promise that as soon as I'm feeling more chipper I will get back in that routine, but for now I just do what I can to get by, which frankly isn't much. I'm a bump on a log and I'm tired of it. I miss food tasting good and I'm just trying to keep my head up for March to bring some changes for me (right now I'm just hoping to be better by Easter so maybe I can eat some of the choc. I got for V-day and some the choc. to come in a month...I love Easter candy, esp. those Reese eggs!). All this to say that I have found a little bit of magic relief in the form of candy...yes, you read that right...I've been able to eat one kind of candy. My wonderful and most thoughtful Aunt Sue sent the kids a wonderful goody box of V-day stuff and in it she had a package of Jolly Rancher Lollipops (yes, I stole candy from the kids...I admit it!). Well, these quite honestly are some of my favs...I've used them for all three of my labors as a back-up "food" in case I was in labor for LOOONG time (i.e. with Hailey :)). Anyway...I thought I'd try one last week and for goodness sakes it lessened my nausea in the evenings! I was thrilled. I think I actually smiled at 9pm one night and that is unheard of lately! So, I've been eating those things like there's no tomorrow (thanks, Aunt Sue!). When I'm feeling really sick I just pop one of those babies in my mouth...it's wonderful to have some brief relief! Of course, Dylan has figured out my bedtime snack and has taken to sitting in bed with me and "sharing" (eating most of) my lollipops or sitting in bed by himself (like this morning) eating a lollipop that he got all by himself :). Actually one night he was up til 10 and we had a nice conversation about how he "wanted the lollipop" (have I mentioned he can talk in complete sentences...or at least one sentence..."I wanna that!"...it's very endearing and he wins most of the time :)). Anyway...so that is one piece of good news...a slight bit of relief at times. Oh, and I've found a water I can drink...it's a strawberry sparkling water....it's very yummy and I'm drinking it like it's liquid candy. I tried drinking reg. water again this weekend and it's still not agreeable. I also tried some ice cream...that didn't agree much either and makes me wonder if this pregnancy has made me somewhat lactose intolerant, which would be a crying shame considering I love dairy of all kinds :(

Anyway...so that's a brief update on me. I know my posts are very narcissistic lately, but I find it helpful to write down my thoughts and also to have this as a online journal so I might never forget the fun of my final pregnancy :) In baby news our little one has gone from mere embryo to fetus this week...meaning that now all major organs are formed...and hopefully meaning I will be feeling better in the next few weeks as my 1st trimester comes to a welcoming close! In other news my 1st official OB appt is tomorrow morning. It'll be nothing exciting as I have to have a pap done, but hopefully we will get to hear the baby's heartbeat and we'll talk about some nausea relief opportunities for me. I was alarmed this morning to find that I actually have lost some weight...I'm not sure how that happened as I feel like I am monster size lately. So, I guess I need to keep on feeding my face, which I already do all day long :)

All else in the Steg house is a-ok. Well, it's not superb. Hailey has been sick with fever, ear inf. and some mysterious virus/flu for like 3 weeks. I'm not kidding...the poor girl has been out of it for almost a month. She was on antibiotics for 10 days, but I think she's resistant to that cuz she's back to fevers again. Today she is better and at school, but she's worn out and won't eat. She is the healthiest of all of us so it's hard to see her not herself. Kev...he's worn out too, but he got a bit of relief this weekend. His parents took the kids for a day (and a night....thanks Mom and Dad!) and we both slept in on Sunday and did pretty much nothing that day but sit around. Ok...so he did a lot of laundry and cleaned the house...which I thanked him for profusely. He truly is amazing. Shelby and Dylan...they are fine...busy little rascals, but fine....again, I promise there will be more happy family moments on the blog soon.......and maybe if I feel a wild burst of energy this week I will post some newer pics :)) Well, I need to get back to putting my feet up and feeling nauseous....wish me luck :) TTYL!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy V-day Day! :)

(sorry for the old v-day pics...the current ones are still on the camera...so instead you get v-day from 2006 :))

Well, my friends, it's the good ol' day of hearts and love...a day where you shower your honey, friends, kids, and family with candy, jewelry, flowers, cards, or maybe just a big ol' hug and kiss :)

V-day for me this year is just being thankful for all the loved ones I have. As you could guess I won't be diving into pounds of chocolate or even enjoying a nice dinner or dessert (cuz, well, the thought of that just makes me want to hurl)...but in the midst of my moodiness and mental issues I sit here today feeling very loved and in turn loving so many. I know these "brief" days of food aversion and exhaustion will be gone before I know it and next V-day I'll probably be chowing down on sweets like normal with a sweet little 5 month old in my lap. God is good and his love, as always, overwhelms me. I am grateful today for so many people (you know who you are!) :) You all know the struggles I've had the last couple weeks and I've so appreciated your support...believe it or not my last couple days have been brighter (maybe not less-nauseous, but still brighter :)). So, here's to all of you out there that I love--Happy Valentine's Day.....and with that I want to leave you with a quote that touches my heart....

Love is not finding someone you can live with....it's finding someone you can't live without!

Amen to that!!! There is no way I could live my life w/o my valentine of a husband, Kev :) He is a rare gem for me in the midst of this crazy world and I love him to death! Thanks for being my everything, sweetie, and for giving your all to our family every day w/o complaint :) And to my little sweeties too...they are my mini-hearts today and I love them so deeply....

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

I miss me :(

Well, folks...I know my title sounds a little selfish, but so be it...I think it's time to be honest about things...

I miss the old me :(

Now don't go assuming I don't want to be pg right now cuz that's not really what I'm trying to say....I guess what I mean is that I am so very tired and totally burned out on being nauseous 24/7 and it would just be glorious to have ONE day of relief...that's all I ask....so with that in mind I'm gonna post about the things I miss right now.....

1. I miss eating dinners with my family :( This is a big one lately. I honestly can't remember the last dinner I ate at our kitchen table with my family...I can't stand to be in the kitchen at all much less at the table where all the food is sitting...I gag and my eyes water and sometimes I just sob...I know that sounds dramatic, but it's true...and I've given in to the drama (I do believe I even cried over a plate of pancakes cuz it looked/smelled like poison...not a shining moment)...usually I eat upstairs in bed as far away from the dinner smell as I can...there's no way around it...it sucks :( Even there I gag and tear up since the smell easily wafts up the stairway to find me (and believe me we've gone through a fair share of air deodorizers trying to clear up those nasty smells). I dread dinner time all day...it's by far my worst time...and it breaks my heart each night when Hailey delivers my dinners to me and kisses me and tells me "feel better, mommy" :(

2. I miss my kids :( Yes, I still get to see them as much as always but mostly I'm in a vegetative state on the couch or in our bed...I know it's hard on them...Dylan's been acting out more and he and Shelby have been fighting like cats and dogs. He took the biggest chunk of hair out of her scalp yesterday and I was mortified (as was she)....he has gotten his fair share of paddlings and crib time-outs. But, I can't help feeling guilty. The poor boy gets lost in the shuffle of my constantly running to the toilet...and poor Hailey and Shelby...they hug and lay with me often and say "I hope you feel better and we miss you". It's like I'm far, far away from them even though I'm in the same house :( I feel like a failure as a mom lately...I do the bare minimum to get by and that doesn't leave me feeling good at the end of each day....there is very little quality mommy-child time and I'm lucky if I can drag myself to the car to get them to activities lately...it's not easy...

3. I miss my hubby....without him right now our house would be a wreck...both physically and emotionally. He has really stepped up to the plate. Not only does he work his 40 hours (or more) at his job, but he has now changed his work schedule from 7-3:30 so he can be home when Hailey gets off the bus and he can do laundry and dishes and make dinner and take care of the kids since from 3pm on is my WORST time of the day and I can hardly make it out of bed....yes, it is that bad, I'm not joking :( He stays up late doing laundry and truly....he never complains, but I can tell he is running out of steam....and by the time he lays down next to me in bed at night I am fast asleep (or crying from the nausea)...I know he too is at a loss of how to make this all better for me. But, he tries his best every day....and insists he can "do it all"

4. I miss sweet treats :( I know this might seem simple, but I have always been a sweets girl, especially during V-day week :( And pretty much any sound/sight of any cookie, cake, candy makes me want to hurl buckets the last few weeks. I'm bummed about that. I ate a VERY small cup of ice cream yesterday and gagged the whole time. The only thing I've kept down and that settled ok were some lemon girl scout cookies...but even those didn't taste normal I'm sure. I miss sweets...and I can't even say the "c" word cuz it makes me gag...and normally I love that 'brown stuff".

5. I miss eating normal meals. This is a big one for me too lately as I can actually feel my poor stomach growling half the time, but nothing sounds good or truthfully most everything makes me want to yak :( My diet consist solely of carbs...I am not joking. Last week I could only eat bagels...then for a few days I moved on to plain white rice with some butter...this week I can eat plain chicken and plain potatoes. I know...blah. I attempted some pizza again on Sunday and I have to say that was my worst night of nausea yet...I won't tell you how much I cried that night from the sheer high levels of nausea. I think that was the night I was curled up in the fetal position pleading with God to make this stop. I am so tired of being nauseous. I even prayed for puke to come forth cuz that would mean a few minutes of relief...no such luck. This pregnancy has come with only 1 puke so far....

6. I miss water. I know that sounds absurb...but I still can't drink plain water. I tried this weekend and gagged the whole time. Not worth it. I still am in my ginger ale, gatorade, sprite stage but even that has gotten old. I moved on to flavored water yesterday...YUCK! Not a great alternative, but better than plain water, I guess. What is up with my drinking issues?? I have never had this symptom before...

7. I miss being on my feet...ok, the above posts probably already told you that...I am in bed or on the couch a lot...I'm not used to being that "lazy" and although I know I need the rest, my rest is truly never "restful" since I'm always on the verge of vomiting.

8. I miss being a homemaker. My homemaking abilities (as few as they were before)...have gone out the door and I wonder if they will come back :( I am hardly able to be in the kitchen much less wash dirty dishes lest I gag the whole time. Laundry...well, Kev has taken that on too mostly. Hailey has truly been a lifesaver too...she has been folding laundry like a crazy girl and helping clean and never complaining...she's actually been proud of herself for helping. I'm so thankful for her....and, of course, thankful beyond words for my wonderful hubby....

9. I miss shopping. Ok, so I'm not a shopper at heart, but most of you know simple trips to the grocery store make me gag so I've mostly given that up too....I miss being able to do that simple task. It's just been another thing to add to Kev's plate (though thank you to all of you who have offered to go for us....we still might take you up on that! :))

10. I miss feeling "normal"...I'm not silly enough to think I was normal before nor that I could feel normal during pregnancy...but I miss just waking up and feeling good in the morning...cuz right now I usually roll over and think "Oh, I'd better eat something quick before I puke"...

11. I miss cleaning...I know...that's crazy...but I feel very guilty late at night seeing my hubby picking up the house when he never really used to have to do that and when I know he's wiped out too. Again Hailey has been helping...but I feel helpless as I watch my family doing all my work....

12. I miss smiling....Ok, so I'm realizing that this post is getting to be a downer, but I really felt today that you all needed to hear how I'm really feeling lately...maybe it's the downright nasty cold/icy/snowy weather or the fact that I'm tired of being cooped up in bed in our house or the fact that I feel like a failure as a mom and wife. But, most of my smiles are not genuine lately. People ask how I'm feeling and I figure they really don't want to know so I say "Ok". That's not really the truth. Mostly I feel like crap and I can't get past that anymore....even dreams of this sweet baby growing and thriving within me are not helping.

13. I miss feeling truly thankful every day for this pregnancy. I know that might sound harsh, but truly...I feel like a cloud has come over me lately (and as much as I hate to admit this I know I have muttered a few times, "I don't think I can do this anymore"). As the day goes on and my nausea gets worse I am just so down about life. Sad that I can't care for my kids like I used to...sad that they miss me...sad seeing my husband working so hard and looking so exhausted. Now in my heart of hearts I am very grateful for this baby....but these past few weeks have been really hard and to have my nausea being "kicked up a notch" this weekend...well, it's been very disheartening. Now, don't get me wrong...I am thankful for this baby, but if I could just go to sleep and wake up in a few months and skip this rough first part of pregnancy I would do it...but I guess this is all part of the journey right :) Good and bad I will take it...as I know it is a blessing to be carrying a child....yet I admit not always being positive in the midst of my sickness latey....the cold hard truth is this baby has me beat! :) He/She is giving me a run for my money...and winning!

14. I miss NOT gagging all the time. I have mastered the fine art of gagging lately....it's not an art I had hoped to master, but somehow in the last two weeks I have it down cold. I have turned my gags into coughs...so most people probably just think I've been sick for 2 weeks...nope...those are my highly disguised gag-fests. Sometimes I'm too gaggy to make the cough work...but normally it's a great cover-up and it keeps the rest of my family from running to the toilet or gagging themselves (Hailey is another gaggy one so I have to be careful to never let her see me gag/vomit). Who knew I'd be the queen of gags this year?! :)

Ok...so all that to say...I'm sorry to be so blunt, but I am not having a good time lately and as much as I'd love to say how great it is to be pregnant I have to say that has just never been the case for me in 1st trimesters. And Kev and I agreed last night....this has been my hardest pregnancy yet, which is equally rough considering I have 3 other kids to care for. I really have never been this sick nor have I ever felt like such an invalid. Now maybe it's cuz I'm older or that this is my 4th pregnancy or that I have more kids to take care of now, or that we're a busier family now, or that I might possibly be very hormonal :) etc...but I really don't think my nausea has ever been this bad. Now my other pregnancies came with a lot more vomiting, but this has by far been the worst "all day sickness" I've had. I am on the verge of getting meds, but have held back due the fear of the meds making me more exhausted than I already am. We shall see how the week goes and if by my appt next Tues. I am still having a rough time I'm gonna need help. So, with all that I must admit that I am mourning a bit...mourning the loss of the idea of the perfect pregnancy. I know that might sounds silly cuz no one has the perfect pregnancy, but like I've said before and people keep reminding me...after time we all sorta forget how bumpy our pregnancies of the past have been...and maybe that was the case with me cuz I always thought (before this pregnancy) that it'd be great to be pg again (crazy, I know). But, maybe this is God's way of ending my "baby carrying" with a bang...maybe he wants me to REALLY remember this one and never want to do it again (which I DON'T!) Thus, why I write this all down...cuz I don't want to forget how hard this was...and I want this baby to know how much I love him/her to go through all this.

Phew...so there ya' go. I am definitely NOT myself and I'm having a rough time...mentally/physically/emotionally/spiritually....I know "this too shall pass", but it'll probably be a good month or two before that happens and I'm just worried about how that's gonna effect my family. If you think of us say a prayer that God will just give us peace and help us not to grow weary (or more weary than we are) and that maybe my nausea can come to a close sooner than later. Love ya'll and hope you are warm and healthy this week....and smilier than me :) Thanks for bearing with me in my sad, sappy, selfish saga of feeling sorry for myself :) I truly did try to hold off on this post hoping things would get better.....but I felt the truth needed to be told....and to be honest I feel slightly better having written this all down now (and slightly guilty having admitted defeat too :))...

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Happy Blog-aversary (or should it be Blog-b-day?!) :)

Well, believe it or not today marks the date that one year ago my dear, sweet little blog was first born :) And, my how that year has gone by so swiftly and look at how my baby blog has grown into this lengthy manuscript of the oh-so-interesting life of our family of Stegs :) Well, what can I say as I sit here 365 days later. It's been a crazy blog ride, hasn't it my on-line friends?! :) I think the birth of my blog was a wonderful thing for me (and for some of my family and friends) and I really do have to give myself a pat on the back for really keeping up on it (211 posts in one year is pretty good for a busy/tired mama of 3 with one of the way :))...but I've enjoyed every minute of it. I'm not sure if I ever had any expectations for my first year of blog-dom, so I guess I can honestly say I've not let myself down in any way and I really have very low expectations for the coming year since it will actually involve a new chapter in the life of this blog (or might even involve blog-death and rebirth since we all know my current blog name won't quite be fitting come Sept :)). But, all that said I'm glad I decided to birth a blog and I thank all of you faithful readers who have been with me all the way...it's been a roller coaster ride of crazy mom stories and who woulda thunk I'd be actually sharing news of a new Steg baby on this blog...that was definitely not in my blog-plans over the last year! So, here's to "The Steg Family Chronicles" and it's 1st Birthday! Whohoo! :)

Happy Birthday, Dad/Pops! :)

A lil' trip down memory lane for good ol' Dad/Poppi :) Above is him and my mom and Hailey at my grandparents grave in WI
Here he is with my sweet grandma (his mom) and Dylan in MI (summer 2006) for my grandpa's (his dad) memorial up north
And here is Pops is in all his glory this December in FL with his 3 grandkids :) I do believe he had just shared a yummy chocolately dessert with his grandson who is still wearing some it! :)
Poppi and his grandson getting cozy :)

Pops teaching his boy how to play b-ball :)
My dad with his in-laws...he loved them like his own parents and they loved him so much in return...
Pops with his slumbering boy at Dismal World this year :)
Pops with Shelba at the cabin in NC this past summer
An old pic of Pops in 2002 with Hailey...
An even older pic in 2001 with Nina and Poppi and Hailey
Proud father-son moment at my bro's air force pilot graduation in Del Rio, TX
Dad with his two brothers and his dad (and nephew) hanging out over Big Creek in NC
Pops with his first grandson
October pumpkin activities with Nina and Pops
Pops with his kids in 2006 (above) and then below is us shortly after Shelby was born in 2004

Well, today is a day to honor my dear "old" dad! :) Yep, he is indeed aging another year today...lucky him! :) I've always thought it was funny that my parents were born only two days apart and then, of course, a bit humorous that my mom beat my dad out by 2 days as the older (maybe wiser? j/k :)) of the bunch :) But, in all seriousness I love my dad...he truly is the best. He has got to be one of the hardest working guys I know and he'd do anything to make sure his family is safe and provided for....not only our immediate family, but our whole Gritz clan. He is a provider in every sense of the world and now that my grandpa (his dad) is gone he truly is the head of our large household and he has stepped up to the plate with great courage and strength. I have always admired my dad for so many things...for the sacrifices he made to give me everything I needed and wanted and for the love he has always unconditionally showed...for sending me to 13 years of Christian school in FL...and then 5 more of private/Christian college in MI...for putting on the best and most beautiful wedding for me 9 1/2 years ago...for walking me down the aisle and giving me away to my wonderful hubby...through all the births of my kids (and kid-to-be I'm sure too :))...he has been there through it all and has been one of my greatest fans and protectors and I know if I ever need anything he will do whatever he can to make that happen. He truly works so very, very hard, but yet I think he knows what's most important in life these days and how short life can be...so he makes a point to take time to spend with family, with friends and most importantly (I think) with his grandkids who simply adore the ground he walks on. I always knew my dad would make a great grandpa (Poppi), but he has far exceeded my expectations as #1 Pops :) He has always taken the time with them to do the big and little things...long walks to talk about nature, trips to the airport to watch planes, lots of fun vacations all over to MI, NC, Disney, etc...he makes a point to make the most of this time with his "kids" :) I love him for that and he truly is a teddy bear at heart when it comes to his grandkids.

So, here's to you, dad--an ol' softy at heart...on your 58th b-day. Maybe this year be better than any other as you watch your son get married in a month, as you welcome another grandchild from your daughter and as you work hard and try to enjoy life at the same time. We love you so much and appreciate all you give to our family and the love you show. I hope your day on the windy golf course in FL was a good one. You deserve to have an enjoyable b-day and I'm sure mom will do her best to make sure you are fed well and celebrated. Looking forward to seeing you soon in GA! Love and Hugs from your family of (almost) 6 here in IN :) Happy Birthday, daddy/Poppi!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Happy Birthday, Mom! :)

Well, here's a picture tribute to my mom--the birthday girl--the best mom, Nina, wife, daughter, friend, etc around! Above is my mom with her parents in Jan. 2006...I think this was the last time they had an outing together...

Sweet Shelba and Nina...hanging out and hamming it up...they got really close this last visit to IN in December
Nina-time at it's best :)
Nina with her two youngest rascals...ready to go to dance class...
Nutcracker, of course! Still a highlight...

My bro's pilot graduation in 2003...proud mama :)

Us in Dec. picking out our Christmas tree at the farm with Nina :)
Dylan's 1st day on earth and Nina holding her first grandson :)
Mom and Dad in the mountains of NC this past summer :) Awww...aren't they the cutest couple?! :)
The birthday Nina and Pops in 2006...Hailey made them Easy Bake oven cakes :) And below is Nina with Hailey back in 2001...this was the earliest dig. pic I had of good ol' Nina/Mom :) And look at cutie-patootie chubby-cheeked Hailey?! :)

Well, today is a day to shower my mom with b-day thoughts and lots of hugs (from afar) cuz it's her big 40th :) Ok...so you got me there...she didn't give birth when she was 9, but I dare say she doesn't look anywhere near her age and there is no way she's gonna be 60 in a couple years...that just can't be?! :)

For those of you who don't know my mom she's this amazing, wonderful, energetic, and outgoing people-person. She's truly one of my most favorite people in the world...she always has been. Not only is she hands down the best mom in the world, but I've been blessed to have her as one of my best friends for a very long time. She is one of my greatest supporters and I can't imagine life w/o her. She brings sunshine to so many dreary days just with a simple phonecall or an email and she has got to be one of the most uplifting and caring people I know...she goes out of her way to be friends to so many and wherever she goes happiness seems to follow. Not to mention she has to be one of the strongest ladies I know. She has been through a lot in last 2 years...the lost of her own parents and other close loved ones, health issues, lots of ups and downs but she's persevered like no other and I admire her so very much. She's a mom that everyone would want, one who I try to be like every day...and she's the best Nina (grandma) to her 3 (almost 4) grandkids...she sits with the kids and plays with them, builds tents with them, takes long walks with them, laughs with them and chats with them and makes the most of her short, but valuable times with them. I can tell by the twinkle my kids get in their eyes when Nina's name is mentioned that they adore her as much as I do and that is blessing to witness.

So, here's to you, mom...for being one of my greatest blessings and friends...for always giving me wise advice and sticking by me through the good and bad (goodness knows I was not the easiest teenager to put up with :)). Thanks for all you've done for me in my 31 years of life and the support you've given me all along the way and now the support you give Kev and your grandchildren too. I hope dad treats you like a queen today and knows how lucky he is to have you in his life. And I hope you have a happy, wonderful and sunshiney 58th birthday. Wish we could be there to shower you with our love! You mean the world to us and we love you! :) Here's to another year of aging gracefully and to many more....

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Introducing...


...Baby Stegs #4 :)

Or as our kids call him/her "little rice" (compliments of Sis Shelba who is going from the first thing I told her weeks ago "that our baby was about the size of a piece of rice" :))...or "some kind of little animal" (as big, wise Sis Hailey told me after peering at the pic....later we agreed our baby looks like a bear of some type...maybe a polar bear?? :))...and as Big Bro Dylan likes to exclaim and did during the u/s experience, "babeeeee!" :) And, daddy, well he just says our wee one looks like a "blob" :)


So, here's evidence of the fruit of our labor :) Yes, indeedy there is a little baby growing away in there....and Yes, I did say "baby":) (not twins....big phew!) :) We were so excited to have our first ultrasound this morning. Although I had very little doubt our baby was thriving it's still nice to be reassured that you indeed have a healthy baby inside you...ones who's little heart it fluttering away and who looks nice and cozy in there while his mama is a nice shade of green on the outside :) But, truly, we are so thankful our babe is looking good and growing great. Especially after my haunting nightmare the other night where we went for our u/s and the baby was dead...yes, that was a horrible dream :( Not to mention my friend, Vonna, was our ultrasonographer and she had to break the news to me :( (and, no, Vonna is not an ultrasonographer at all, but I guess I think she's wise enough to be :)). Anyway...so you can understand my relief over seeing our little "bear" tucked nicely in my uterus just resting peacefully, but with a happy, beating heart :) All looked good. Of course the u/s came with it's issues. The picture machine wasn't working/or got jammed in the middle of my ultrasound so the tech had to take a bit of time to fix that...and then pretty much had to repeat my whole sonogram cuz all my pics were ruined/jammed in the machine. But, that's ok...it was just more time we got to see our sweet baby....ok, that's not entirely honest...I had made the mistake of drinking a whole glass of gatorade before the u/s and then I found out it was gonna be a transvaginal one (yuck!) so I was crawling out of my skin a few times as the tech was pushing on my bladder and measuring my ovaries...and then had to repeat the procedure :(

The bad news about the ultrasound info was that we indeed found out we are about a week off in our dates. New due date is Sept. 15 (5 days later than we thought)...I'm not surprised that I was a bit off on dates or that I ovulated late, and the later Sept. date doesn't really worry me...it's just the fact that this probably means I have another week of nausea to put up with (and right now that seems like eternity to me :(). So, it just might be October when we finally deliver knowing how I go overdue :) Ok...j/k...there ain't no way this baby will be cooking in me til Oct! :) Anyway...so that was pretty much the news...I'm officially 8 weeks, 2 days (where I thought I was gonna be 9 weeks tomorrow). Baby looked great (measuring around 1.8cm from head to rump) and heart looked and sounded perfect. Of course you can't really see much at an early u/s, but what we saw was good enough for me and I was happy to come home with a sweet little video and photos to smile at while I run to the toilet to puke each day :)

So, all looked a-ok...now we just wait two more weeks til my first appt which will be exhilarating I'm sure complete with pap smear :) And I imagine our next u/s will be around Shelby's 4th b-day (first week in May). And, no, we haven't decided on the gender question (finding out the sex :))....my gutt says "no" (I like to wait til delivery)...but I might go the "envelope" route and have the tech put the answer in there....we shall see...I know, mom, it's torturous for you not to know...but then again you admitted you don't even remember knowing Shelby was a girl....so why not wait with this one too!? :) Hang in there everyone...7 mos will fly by! :)

I am blessed!

Ok, so I realize lately that most of my posts have been downright depressing and nauseating :) So, instead of doing another downer post today I wanted to focus on some of my greatest blessings the last couple weeks....

Simply stated: I have the BEST friends and family around....

Now, don't get me wrong...I've known this for a long time...and I'm often humbled by how kind and wonderful people can be in the midst of good and bad times...but I really have to say that a few friends and family members have really stepped it up lately and gone above and beyond their normal friendly/familial duties and I don't want another day to go by w/o me recognizing them. Now I won't go naming you all by name cuz there truly are so many of you, but I do want to mention a few who have touched my heart (and my stomach) when I've needed it most....

First of all, my bestest bud and kindred spirit, Heather (and I guess I can't leave her hubby Dave out) :) They are our two of our best "couple" friends in town and I have to say they are some of the most thoughtful people I know. Well, this weekend we (and by we I mean Kev) watched their sweet son, Ethan (who is one of Shelby's best buds)...well, anyway....I was laid up in bed all weekend due to high amounts of nausea....but when I awoke I found a big ol' care package of goodies for me sitting in the kitchen....all the stuff I "crave" (and by crave I mean the few things that don't make we want to hurl :))....gatorade, ginger ale and bagels. Well, gosh....that touched my heart to the core, dear friends....you are too good to me and I have pretty much devoured all of it....you fed me and this new baby for the last few days and we can't thank you enough. You are the bestest and dearest of friends and we love you guys so much. Not to mention we really had a great time at your house on Super Bowl night...and surprisingly those wings and brownie stayed in my stomach....amazing! :) Oh and I love my new wall hanging of the kids and my b-day barf bags (ha, ha!) :) You guys are the best and I'm so thankful we are friends.....

Second, I had another good Bloomy pal and backyard neighbor who knew I was craving fruit last week and delivered a yummy little mixture of it right to my door....and even brought V-day cookies along for the kids and Kev (who gobbled them right up...actually the cookie was Dylan's b-day dessert...he wanted that over the cake mommy made him :)). Not only that, but my neighbor friend has been bringing us treats for weeks--ice cream, frosty's...we have gotten really spoiled. We've been watching her sweet son, Ben, for an hour here or there, but truly...we'd do it for free...he's a joy :) But, I wanted to give a shout-out to Angie for being a great pal...all the goodies have been much appreciated....

Third, well, I already mentioned her yesterday on her b-day...my sis, Holly. I am still smiling away today every time I go downstairs and see my "pale of flowers" :) I love them....in the midst of her b-day and missing her own hubby who has been gone for weeks....she takes pity on me and cares so much to try to brighten my day with a smile and send flowers and some "vomit humor" from so many miles away. She is a true friend and if I had to chose a sister she'd definitely have been it over the years...she is tried and true and I love her to death and consider her family even if we aren't blood (though I know we've shed blood fighting, I'm sure :)). Sis...your thoughtful heart is a great gift to me :)

Fourth, is our aunt and uncle and cousins here in Bloomy...they have to truly be some of the kindest people I know also....they call often and offer their help and bring us food and never hesitate to help us in any way they can. They are the kind of people that make you want to be better yourselves. Over the years they have become more than family...they are friends...and we cherish them being so close in heart and mileage and for all their love and support...

Fifth and, of course, tops on my list, my hubby :) He is number one in my books for sure. I can't even tell you all that this fav. man in my life has done in the course of the last few days...but he has worked his rear off making sure our home isn't falling apart. He even raced home yesterday after only a couple hours of work after I "fell apart" emotionally after a lost-key fiasco (and, yes, sis, we found them after about 5 hours in between the mail that I had looked at many times...Kev is taking the blame :)). Kev is God's greatest gift to me and I truly don't know how he finds the energy and smiles to do all he does...but he does it. I can say a million things about how wonderful he is...but simply said...he is my lifeline and I love him to death. Thanks, sweetie for doing all you did (and will do) and for being such an amazing provider (and lately stay-at-home dad and #1 launderer) for our family.

And last but not least....this is to all of you out there....it's truly not the "things" that matter to me, but the thoughts and prayers, emails, cards and phonecalls and all those very helpful and encouraging blog comments (yes, Ann and others...I do love your advice :))....so many of you have gone above and beyond and I can feel your love in the midst of my pregnancy depression (that's what I've called this first trimester....where all I want to do is sleep so I don't have to think about puking) :) There are so many of you out there....and I am truly, truly blessed beyond measure by all of you....so many of you have called or emailed asking to help in any way (grocery store trips, meals, babysitting)...it's all just humbling to know that people are so kind and caring. Today I send you all a blog-hug (whatever that is :))...and I just want you to know how much I cherish you. I'd probably be curled up in the fetal position today if it wasn't for you...you brighten my days with your thoughts and prayers. Thank you to you all...you have been little angels of sunshine on these "bumpy" days :) Bless you for all you do!!

And with a heart full of thanks and the knowledge of all my blessings I just want to say I'm gonna try harder to look at the sunshine in each day. I know I am blessed beyond measure to be carrying this sweet baby and I need not get caught up in the nausea and forget about the light at the end of the tunnel. God is good and this baby is evidence of that. So, here's to happier/more positive days ahead. Days of not feeling so sorry for my nauseous self :) And days where I can maybe be a better mom and wife...cuz as Hailey put it this weekend, "I want mom back" :) (and I couldn't agree more...I want to feel better too, sweetheart! :))

Monday, February 4, 2008

Happy B-day, "Sis"! :)

Well, this picture trip down memory lane is for my "sis" :) Sadly enough these were ALL the digital pics I had of her (and, yes, I know none of them are great)...sadly enough we haven't seen each other since 2004? Yikes...that's so sad...but hopefully we'll meet up this next New Year! Ok...so above maybe you can tell we're at Chuck E Cheese in FL...I think we were celebrating DJ's (her son's) birthday (7-2004)...Shelby is the baby there (fyi) :)
And, gosh, I know this doesn't show my sis...but it shows her darling son...and look how little Hailey was! This is at good ol' Chuck E's too :)
And this pic...well, it's on the island she lives...her hubby-to-be next to her...with my mom and her mom...this is right before they got married (we were in their wedding...yikes...that was 2002) :)...and below is Hol with Hailey at her (Hailey's, not Hol's :)) FL 3rd b-day party :) (2003)

Well, in the midst of the worst day I've had in a long time I wanted to crawl over to the computer and give a great big hug and shout-out to my fav. "sis" in the world. Ok, so you all know I don't have a sister, but I've always wanted one and one of my best childhood friends became my adopted sort of sis long, long ago when we basically lived together on a boat with her parents in the Bahamas for a couple summers back when we were young and carefree. I honestly can't remember a time when I didn't have the support of my wonderful sis...she's always been there through thick and thin and she's seen the best and definitely the worst of my crazy personality. In fact, I think we are a lot alike in the way we deal with things so I think that's why we've stayed friends for so many decades and through the many, many miles (and ocean) that separate us :) (yes, she now lives in the Bahamas :)). I love my "sis" so much and I appreciate her for so many reasons...mostly cuz I know if I need some advice or a shoulder to cry on (over the phone :))...she is there without hesitation....she has one of the biggest hearts I know. Case in point: Today, it's her 31st b-day and I should be showering her with gifts and cards and instead I get a knock on my door and this beautiful flower arrangement delivered with the funniest note saying something like "I hope these don't make you nauseous, but if they do a pail is included"....yes, the flowers were in a pail just for vomit purposes if needed :) That's my good humored sis...she knows when I am having a horrible day even if I haven't talked to her in months...and she doesn't think twice about trying to make things brighter and happier for me...even on her own b-day when she's missing her sea-faring hubby and her kids are possible driving her crazy :) :) So, here's to you, Hol, one of my best friends....one who has seen my best and worst, one who may have even bit me once or twice as we fought on the boat (oops, was that supposed to be a secret? :)), one who sat on the boat with me and drank water and dramamine to keep from barfing on the high seas, one who had the BEST house ever with the MOST toys I had ever seen a young girl have (yes, sis, you had the best/most Barbies!), one who I still remember exchanging Christmas gifts with as a child (I think I actually had a dream about Rainbow Brite last night :)), to the girl who used to drive me nuts with the way she ate her choc. pop tart (yes, I can still picture it and I swear you ate it that way just to get under my skin! :))...to the one who loved Cabbage Patch Kids as much as me (and who had a twin one that I think we both still have)....to the one who cried at my wedding and then I returned the favor and cried at hers, to the birth of my kids and the births of hers, to the good and bad times of being a mom and wife...and the list goes on and on...:) We've had a long run of it, sis....happy times, sad times, weddings, pregnancies, births....it really is crazy when you think about it. And I guess I just wanted to say "thanks" today....you have been one of my truest and most supportive friends and I am grateful each day and want to say it on this, your birthday. Hope you have a great 31st, Old Lady :) And don't worry...as old and gray as you get, I'll always be one month older and grayer (and wiser) :) That's what big "sisters" are for, right?! Hope your kids treated you better after we got off the phone and hope that hubby of yours gets home this week! Love ya lots and thanks for making me smile on a tough day!

Friday, February 1, 2008

The reality of this pg woman...

....this baby-growing stuff is down-right hard! :)

Ok, so that's just making light of my situation (and it's not like this is a new revelation to me either...duh!)...but I can honestly say that this week has been more than hard...it's been overwhelming and difficult...and that's not only for me...it's for Kev and the kids too, which, of course adds tons of guilt onto my already full plate of emotions and hormones....

So, yes, the hard times have come (actually I think they came weeks ago...but they are still lingering so that has helped my frustration grow). Now, don't get me wrong...I am thankful every day that I am able to carry a child again and that God has blessed us with this miracle...but the cold hard reality of it all is that I don't necessarily enjoy being pg...especially during the nausea-filled days of the first trimester. I can't help that I feel this way and I don't want to sugar coat it for anyone who may think being pg is all sunshine and smiles with this beautiful glow about you (though I'm sure some lucky gals get that experience...and that's just not fair!). I glow green these days and my smiles are less than genuine and all I really want to do at the beginning of each day is roll over and go back to sleep. Ho hum! I know I'm such a downer and that's really not my intention...I just want to be honest that it's incredibly difficulty carrying a life inside you and on top of that taking care of the lives you've already birthed (or married). And I can't help but look back on my days of being pg with Hailey and thinking...gosh it was nice back then when I could sleep whenever I wanted cuz I had no one else to care for but myself (and Kev...who in my pregnant opinion can take of himself!). Ok...so I know I'm on a pg rampage...so be it. Blame it on the hormones....but I just wanted to put it out there that as messy as my house is and as full of dishes as my sink is and as grumpy as I may seem...I am working really hard here in this belly of mine to bring this little person to full growth and potential. And my little motto of "head in toilet=healthy baby"...well, that's gone done the crapper as I'm just so worn out this week.

Alright...so enough said...you know I'm having a hard time. Of course add onto that that I had "puke #1" this morning and it was so sudden that I couldn't even get my head to the toilet and I had to do it in the kitchen sink (luckily for once there were no dishes in it! :)) So, there ya' go...my first puke is out of the way...it's been a long time coming and to be honest I felt pretty good for about a half hour after! It's the first time I've been completely nausea-free for 2 weeks! YAY! And to be honest the puke was my fault anyway. I slept for an extra hour today and didn't eat at my normal early hour (due to our first snow/ice school delay...yay!)...so by the time I went down to eat I was past my empty stomach limit and up came all the clear liquid I'd drank or the spit I'd swallowed over the last 8 hours (TMI, I know). It wasn't an impressive puke, but I'm counting it as #1. The rest of the day has gone downhill...I am back to an all-time high level of nausea and I feel like I'm constantly eating so I don't puke, which means I feel like a big ol' bloated fool all the time. I'm still struggling with my drinking issues too (wow, that makes me sound like a drunk!)...I found some packets of koolaid in the cupboard so I've been downing those...but as soon as I can make it to the store I'm gonna get me some good old ginger ale or flavored water. Add onto that that I've just been completely and utterly exhausted this week....well, you know...it's been rough. My all-time low day was Tuesday. I tried to take a 20 minute nap before Hailey got off the bus (cuz I thought "a little nap is better than none"...bad idea)...well, turns out I must have turned off my alarm and was awakened by Hailey banging on the door to come in. Not a shining mommy moment and I'm glad I even heard her at all! After that I could not even get my rear off the couch. I have never been so exhausted in all my life. I actually had to call Kev to come home from work and get Hailey to take her to dance cuz I didn't think I was awake enough to safely drive. Low, low moment :( I hate admitting when I can't do things and having to ask for help...it does not make for a fulfilling day for me :(

I think my greatest issue this week has been gas/bloating. I'm not even sure if it really is gas/bloating...but I should literally take a picture so all you readers can see the pain I'm in. At the beginning of each day my tummy is normal...you can't even tell I'm pg, which is what I think is normal for 8+ weeks. Well, at the end of each night I can honestly say I look and feel like a 6 month pg woman. My stomach is so bloated. I knew it was bad...but on Dylan's b-day Kev actually stopped and said "is that gas?" (looking at my belly and pointing)...umm, yes, thanks, honey! :( Another shining moment for me :( I don't mind looking big and pg when I really shouldn't be yet...but the bad thing about this is the terrible pain. I was in so much pain a few nights this week that I had to lay down before the kids were even in bed...and then I tossed and turned all night long cuz the pressure was so awful. I've been trying to watch what I eat to avoid the pain...but it's a vicious cycle cuz only very few things sound good to me right now. I'm just at a loss about all this. I know each of my pregnancies have been hard in their own way...but this is ridiculous as far as the bloating and nausea go...I don't remember it being this bad.

All right...so I feel better now that I got that off my chest :) One thing I can say is that Kev has been wonderful through it all. He's been home from work early most times or goes in late and puts up with my mid-day phonecalls/complaints and all my hormonal outbursts. He comes home and makes dinner (cuz I can't even stand to be in the kitchen lately due to smells and thoughts of food....doing the dishes yesterday made me gag and wretch :))...so, bless Kev for all he is doing...for putting all the kids to bed every night so I can put my feet up and for never complaining about any of it. He has risen to the occasion of being this pg-lady's husband :) And I feel guilty every night for how wonderful he treats me in spite of my frazzled pg state :) I promise when I'm feeling better I'll be a good mom/wife again. And the kids...well, they have really been angels in the midst of my outburts. Yes, they have been fighting more than normal, but I really can't blame them...things around here are just not normal. I am often bed/couch ridden and unable to be in the kitchen much to make them proper meals...we are just doing what it takes to get by right now. Hailey has been great....she hugs me so tight all the time and when I'm in bed she'll lay down with me and tell me she hopes I feel better. Shelby...she has been as sweet as peaches :) I just love her to death lately (not that I didn't before!)....she has really stepped it up in the "sweetness" dept. She often says to me "are you feeling ok"..."is our baby making you sick"...or "I hope you feel better soon, mama". She has been very mellow which has been a great help to me. Even Dylan...well, he's been my sweet little man as always...he climbs into bed with me and brings me books to read him and he'll give me big old kisses and lay his head on mine when I look sad and sick. It's just a comfort to know my kids somewhat understand that mommy is not functioning at even 50% these days :( Again I feel guilty that they have to be the ones comforting me, but I think I need to learn to take sympathy when I can get it! :) All that to say that I really don't deserve my sweet family...they are too good to me...they let me rest almost all the time and even when I'm mean and nasty and won't share my food and drink (which is every day)...they just nod and say "ok"...(and what is up with everyone wanting mommy's craving food!? I don't get that....the kids drink my koolaid and gatorade like it's liquid candy and Hailey has been begging for bagels ever since I bought them...do they NOT know those are the only foods that I can stomach now! ugh!) :) :) Ok...I love you, my 3 sweet kids...and I'm sorry I'm not in a sharing mood lately...again, mommy is not a good example these days!

So, in spite of all the downer days of this week I am still so very thankful for the position I am in. I try to get past this first trimester slump and to pump myself up every day by looking at sweet ulrasound pics of babies at 8 weeks. And I'm getting so excited to see our little one on screen next Tuesday. I know being sick like this is normal for me and that's not really why I'm having a hard week...it's just been a mixture of things (a lot of crazy hormones) and mostly the fact that I don't feel like a good mom/wife lately and since that's my "job" I guess I feel like I'm a failure at it right now :( But, I know things will turn around and brighter days will come. Tomorrow I look forward to a "day off". Kev is taking the girls to Hailey's normal "Saturday events" and my boy and I are just gonna take the day and veg out! I can't wait to be lazy (not that I've haven't been lazy all week!)...but it'll be nice to have permission to be lazy for once. This weekend will be fairly busy for us, but I think it'll go ok. Tonight Kev and Hailey have their big Father-Daughter Girl Scout dance...so at least that's something that'll be fun (for Hailey at least :)).

And maybe to brighten the mood of this pg hormonal blog I'll try to post some b-day pics of Dylan on his big #2. He had a great day on Wednesday and I'll tell you all about it later. Thanks to all of you who posted b-day wishes and who sent cards, phonecalls, gifts and love. He (and I) really appreciated it! In the midst of my nausea-filled week that was one bright moment...to see my baby so happy on his b-day :)