Friday, May 30, 2008

Back home

(I started writing this on Thursday, a full day later I still hadn't finished it. Apologies)

The last 48 hours have been a blur of pain and insanity. I'm so tired that I may never walk further than 3 feet ever again.

Remember how I said that I was getting transfused? Well, my hemoglobin dropped a lot, because as that placenta pulled away, I lost a lot of blood.

Half the blood volume in my body to be precise.

Hemoglobin started out at 95 prior to labour, then went to 80 immediately after the c-section. The next day it had dropped to 54. The resident came in and explained that I would need a transfusion of at least one unit maybe two to avoid permanent heart damage. Really they were concerned about more than just heart damage, but they were trying to be low key to avoid freaking me out even more than before.

And that is why I have even more pain and swelling than the average c-section.

When my blood was at it's lowest level on Tuesday I really began to lose my mind. That was also the day that the residents started to shit on me and ignore me because they could; because the staff Docs were gone....

And again the nurses rode to my rescue, tracking down the Doc on call and figuring out who should be covering for my case and getting them on the phone and begging them to come to my room and make a treatment plan. And they did....

After an US to make sure I didn't have any bleeding into my belly or retained placenta or excess fluid, I got another unit of blood and a good night's sleep. (Thank you baby for not keeping me up)

And I stopped crying. I also called my GP and told her the entire story and after she got over the shock she helped me out too.

Today before I left, I met with the lactation consultant and got a nipple shield and some polysporin for my cracked bleeding nipples. I breastfed both my older kids for well over a year through thrush and mastitis and all sorts of hell and I am absolutely determined that I am going to breastfeed this baby as well even though we got off to a rough start. This is my thing and my thing only btw, like my attitude about pg loss and IF. If someone else wants to use formula, whatever, I'm fine with your choices, but when I really really want to do something I get a bit stubborn about it, so don't take it personally and please be supportive. Thanks.

So to those of you who had emergenciy c-sections or bled out during delivery or just have low hemoglobin---any suggestions? Ideas?
Assvice welcome? Heeeelp?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

My adorable little guy and how he got here

I have some more photos, mostly from my phone, although several are from are our real high tech camera---the one we never got to use, because we got quite a surprise. Once again, no birth film, even like this, geez I wish I had one.

Speaking of which, I know some of the details I wrote were kind of sketchy, and I'm actually trying very hard to remember more, but my biggest issue right now is that I don't remember certain things because I was in such extreme pain, (non-labour pain- so far some people are speculating that that pain was my placenta was tearing, and that pain is nightmarish) or when I was passed out cold, no bp etc.....and that little blank spot is getting me a bit freaked out to be honest.

Anyway, in my usual fashion, I am trying to speak to as many people as possible who were there who can give me their version, and maybe that will jog my memory more. I need to remember it more clearly. Fill in the blanks.

For now, I just wanted you all to know that so far as I can tell my birth plan was followed. My C-section was completely absolutely medically necessary and I didn't even need to whip out the rusty butter knife to do my own. They were very kind and gentle to me at all times, even when I was being wheeled down the corrider at top speed. Mr.Cotta was put in charge of the baby as soon as he had his scrubs on, even though he admitted he was so shocked that it took some time for him to put his pants on.

There was some early interventions that they wanted to do, but my nurse, Livia, who was an absolute angel, told them no, it wasn't medically indicated, and stopped them! And later when some goofy medical student was eyeing my chart and wanted to ask the complicated lady some questions while contracting...she stopped him from coming into my room. And near the end, when my epidural had failed and my pain was so unstoppable I begged everyone to kill me, she held my face in her hands, and spoke to me slowly and clearly and told me that they were trying to find out what was causing the pain.....and that alone, knowing that someone gave a damn enough to try to save me, that alone made me want to live.

These are the bits I remember tonight as I sit here, getting transfused, weak as a kitten and swollen and beaten up.

Baby is sleeping, he finally agreed to latch on and drink some breastmilk so he could be discharged from the NICU. (Funny contrast to the U.S. here-babies there are required to be able to bottlefeed to be discharged from a NICU, here, no one cares as long as they eat one way or another, and if the momma wants to breastfeed, then they go to town to make sure she can. At least at this NICU....weird huh?)

Time for me to sleep, maybe snuggle with this baby....take care my sweets.

okay that didn't work

Just tried to post a photo of our new baby, and it didn't show up but a whole lot of other hyperlinked junk did.

Grrr...Rogers is evil.....

Anyway, I will try again when my brain starts to work.

He was 7 pounds, 13 ounces at birth, ands we're naming him after Mr. Cotta's dad. I have to think of a blog name for him and edit this post later, any suggestions? In other news, he broke out of the NICU last night at 5 pm, too healthy or something they said. He proceeded to demonstrate his lung power and bowel prowess, still trying to figure out the whole boob in mouth I am now in pain and tired. I'm trying to nap while my husband has him. Yawn...

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Baby is here

My placenta suddenly abrupted right when the pain broke through the epidural.

They replaced the epidural catheter in my back and my pain did not decrease very much. They gave me fentanyl and it made me very dopey and then I passed out? Then the baby's heartrate dropped rather suddenly and would not go back up. They did a quick ultrasound right there in the OR and realized my placenta was toast and I was bleeding to death.

So I just had an emergency c-section that was done in under 5 minutes flat.

He's in the NICU overnight and I'm in recovery.

We almost died---both of us, but we didn't. We are alive because we happened to be at the hospital getting induced.

This is terrible and awful but really right now I feel like I have horseshoes up my ass.

I have a live baby. He didn't die. And neither did I.

More later.

Relief and redemption

Resting now frozen and happy.

Alley is right, pain relief drugs rock! Got my epidural and it wasn't easy because the contractions were 1.5 minutes apart. But I made it!

Something weird is happening though, all my contractions this time are sharper as opposed to dull. Anyway they are going to check me again soon and likely break my water.

I may post a picture later, not sure how to mobile blog it. But if I can I will!

The redemption part? I'm walking around earlier trying to make things progress and I shuffle past the special room, the room where Matthew died. I always say a little prayer when I go past it....well this time I see a woman I know from my OBs office and she and I chat a minute. She is staying there because her BP is high and they are trying to keep her baby in a little longer.

So wild seeing a woman who likely will get a live baby in a place I associate with a dying child. While I am working on getting a live baby as we speak.


There are blessings all around us if we just take the time to look.

1:47 pm labour update

Quickly before another motherf-cking contraction hits....they are 2 minutes apart

Am torn between epidural now and possibly stalling labour and epi later when more steady labour hits.

The resident examined me and I am now 2 cm dilated only 30 per cent effaced and still longish but at least we know the damn contractions are doing something. If I was going through all this pain for no progress I'd murder someone, seriously.

So I wait a little longer then maybe get my IV, with fluid and antibiotics then the epidural.

Also sucky friend called my number and implied I was about to do something dangerous if I had a dose or morphine in the interim like she gives a shit more than I do about this baby. Am no longer answering the fucking cellphone if I see her number.


Lil more action

I seem to be getting some more contractions thanks to my AWESOME OB who gave me a double dose of gel and overruled the resident who wanted to just give me a little and send me home again.

So I'm sitting here in between painful productive ones letting you know to always always ask for the attending, and you know, cry and beg for stuff.

And look piteous, so they don't make you drive home over the ::_-;!:(*: city of toronto speedbumps and potholes while in labour.

Back home

Got the gel in and as I predicted it didn't do much. So now we are sleeping here instead of staying in the hard hospital beds. And hopefully I can get breakfast before we go back in about 6 ish hours.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Last hurrah

Bikini wax? Check

Manicure/pedicure? Check

Bought the kid's camp supplies ahead of time? Check

Made sure kid's homework is done? Check

Lawn mowed? Flowers planted and watered? Check

Legs shaved/ body freshly showered? Check

Kids sent for sleepover? Check

Attended friend's surprise party? Check

Called charge nurse to confirm time change to come in? (Now 11:30 pm) Check

Ready to have actual live baby?

Fuck no

D-day almost

Tonight I go in for my gel to soften up and open up my cervix, and hopefully it will do the job while I sleep peacefully at home, and then tomorrow morning I go in, get my water broken, and then get an epidural, and maybe a pit drip and have a baby.

Easy, right?

Simple, right?

Millions of women do this all the time, and nothing bad happens, and odds are with me as well. So can someone explain why I woke up hysterical with fear and am wondering if it's too late to back out?

Is it? Maybe we could just turn back time?

I'm afraid I'll just get another dead baby. I'm afraid of getting a live baby. I'm afraid of catheters, I'm afraid of doctors and nurses, I'm afraid of germs, I'm afraid of EVERYTHING. I am on the verge of hysteria, and I just don't know what to do.

I'm ready to kill my husband if he looks at me the wrong way, and I'm ready to kill the boys if they look at me funny. They made some joke about swinging the baby around by it's ankle when it comes out and for second I took them seriously, and gave them SUCH a death glare they shut up instantly. (All three of them are being very very kind to me, they deserve better, I'm just too fucked up to be better right now.)

I'm a big ball of hormonal stressed out vulnerability, and I hope everyone I meet in the next 48 hours understands.

Friday, May 23, 2008


I'm trying to learn some compromise today. Like my contractions for instance---they come, they go, they peter out, they ramp up, they really never do a damn thing except annoy me. They strike me as compromise baby labour.

I have begun to snore excessively in the last month, so badly that I could wake the dead. My darling husband had tried to suffer through and get some sleep, sleep he badly needs, but he finally broke down and told me that I sound like a ripsaw working through cement. so we are sharing the bed a bit. He goes to bed early, gets a few hours of shut eye while I watch my fave late night tv, then I come up and disturb him for a while with my buzz saw nose, until he comes down and sleeps on the couch or surfs, or whatever.

Normally, I don't snore. Mr.Cotta, on the other hand has severe sleep apnea and for years snored badly then occasionally stopped breathing altogether for minutes at a time. I tried to get used to it, but couldn't, so I sent him off to a sleep clinic and he came back with a lovely CPAP machine that pretty much saved our marriage and definitely made his blood pressure go down, and his quality of life go up. I wish I had one now---but they don't give them to pregnant women, even temporarily for the last trimester. Silly thing, considering how much extra oxygen we'd get. Oh well....

More compromise; I went for a manicure and pedicure today after my shrink appointment where we discussed my birth plan. The mani/pedi was necessary in light of the fact that I cannot reach my own feet. And they look bad. I thought it would be nice for the nurses and docs who will be near my feet this weekend if said feet weren't too ugly looking. As of this afternoon, I have lovely pink polish on my rather ungainly feet. They may be larger than normal, but they are pretty.

I spoke to a service about hiring a nanny and we are interviewing someone tomorrow. Cue liberal white middle class guilt. Cue me not sure what to ask when we interview her....this is a good idea, but damn I'm inexperienced.

Mr.Cotta and I may have finally agreed on a name, it only took nine months. And more compromise than the Palestine-Israeli peace talks, and no I'm actually not kidding. He wants to name the baby after his Dad, and I'm like, meh.....for a dozen different reasons. He is the only one who likes the name. His family will go apeshit. It's old-fashioned. I think he has difficult associations with the name because of his complicated relationship with his Dad. Anyway, in the end, he has worn me down. I had a name I was set on for a girl, but I had no names set aside for boys---that will teach me, I assumed infertility would win, and I never planned a name, cause after all, there was never going to be a baby, right? (Hint to all of you: plan this out ahead of time....just in case the stick turns pink.)

And the shrink appointment? You'd be so proud of me---I wrote up my birth plan sans snark and we reviewed it and when she and her little assistant said insulting things, I didn't even roll my eyes or tell her to stuff it, nothing. I found a polite way to compromise; I told her she was wrong, politely and proved it. And she backed down. I reeeaaaallly wanted to walk out, especially after the time she implied that when I choked on my own vomit that I hadn't choked on real vomit, but instead had a panic attack and perhaps we could use some psychological technique to make sure I could breathe. I and silently vowed that I was going to find a new therapist, then calmly explained that the ambulance attendants had detected liquid in my bronchial tubes and lungs and had cleared maybe we could move on. She kept trying to insist that there must be some way that I could calmly relax and breathe, and I kept explaining that it was mechanical, a function of a large baby and a short mother; that humans can't breathe liquid....which is when she backed down.

I swear I have so many bad doctor stories, I could fill an entire blog....oh yeah, I already DID. hahahahahahahhahahahahahha


Today is happy compromise day. Friday and Saturday are get more stuff done day, on my big long list. I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Money money money

I'm having contractions, or else Dinkypie is digging his fingers into my cervix in a wild escape attempt, so I decided to think about money instead.

Recently, I have avoided thinking about it at all, and until about a year ago I was pretty manic about checking the online banking, etc. Then I relaxed a bit and only checked a couple of times a day. In the last few weeks---that avoidance has become utter oblivion. And today I thought, what the hell, let's get back to earth; pay a few bills.

Mostly because I've been thinking about how we teach our kids about money and bills and budgeting---and what impact does this have on our economic choices as adults?

Mr.Cotta grew up with a lot of money, and at one point, they no longer had it. So he has known highs and lows and hates being in debt and without the ability to spend freely. He also though, is not really into the middle ground of budgeting and spending calmly. He doesn't want to know how much things cost. Even though he knows he has too. Poor guy.

I grew up with nothing and my parents never taught me anything about finances or how to handle money except for overheard conversations about losing the house, and how we had no money for food that week, but my mother had run up yet another $300 phone bill calling her relatives up north, or how my dad had done something else stupid and run up a credit card bill he could not pay. I never had an allowance and never had any spending money, so if I ever did get money, I didn't know what to do with it and blew threw it in seconds. My parents stole the money my grandmother had put into a college saving account for me, and when I got into university, there was no money, and the student loan program disqualified me because of their bad credit rating. I had to wait until I had lived on my own for three years to qualify for any loans at all. I worked as a waitress and a bartender to support myself in the meantime, but since I had no idea how to save or budget, I racked up my new credit cards and bought too many dumb things I simply did not need.

Paying that off and learning how to plan out my spending during university saved my ass, and let me eat. I hate debt as much as my husband, but I also know that sometimes you need to use it for certain things, like mortgages, or buying cars, or home repairs, etc...and yes, sometimes for buying necessary items when you are cash short. I've admittedly become unreasonably obsessed with RESPs for my kids due to my own history. I'd rather die than ever tap into them for my own uses or household bills. (Yes, some people get so broke they have to take money from the kid's college accounts, to pay for food and rent, but we've always been a loooonnnng way from that. My parents never needed the money for anything necessary, they just felt like being shitheads.)

So I've tried to teach my own kids about money, telling them how much things cost, talking about paying bills, and giving them an allowance so they could practice saving, spending, and giving money to charity. At one point we debated tying it to chores and only giving them money on special occasions or from the tooth fairy and we started out that way. But it became too difficult for Kaz to earn enough money to do anything. And the whole point of the exercise was lost, because he never had any money to manage. We changed it so that chores are simply an obligation of belonging to the family that they have to do no matter what. No choice, although we do change chores around during exams, etc. because we want Kaz to focus on homework then.

So now, we give them one dollar per year of age per week, 11 dollars per week for Kaz, and 8 dollars per week for Mac. They both have savings accounts and they deposit money, they give money at church and they have money for candy at the store....for my part, I (mostly) only give them presents on Christmas and birthdays, and if they want something in the interim, or something too expensive for Mommy and Daddy to justify, they pay for it themselves. Kaz is a miser, I think he has the first dollar we ever gave him and Mac is totally spendthrift.....can't stop himself from buying stuff. So we've had to make Kaz spend money on stuff, and forbid Mac from doing it. It's pretty funny actually. It's amazing what they decide isn't necessary to buy when it's their own money coming out of their very own wallets.

So that's what we do. And our neurosis around it.

What money habits did you grow up with? And what have you taught your kids? (if you have any) If you have no children yet, then what do you intend on doing?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

still here--still closed tight as a drum

Sweeties, would you understand if I said that it is terribly ironic that my damn cervix is still closed up and long, and last pregnancy this far along, with Mac, I was going through PTL at 32 weeks, and 2 cm dilated and thinned and completely ready to go by 37-38 weeks?

All I know is that the next Doctor who tells me that progesterone suppositories don't keep cervixes closed is getting a big fat punch in the face. I know, it's not always perfect, hell, no drug therapy is. Even tylenol doesn't relieve every headache, and even the hottest best chemo doesn't clear every cancer.

But this stuff is pretty damned effective and if you'd like to look up my cooter, I have some gold standard proof....just sayin'.

So now what the hell do I do? Mr.Cotta is reluctant to do too much natural induction because he's afraid I'll get heartburn again and he'll have to call the ambulance again. Meanwhile, I'm like dude, there is no link between the two events. He's not that prolific, for god's sake!

I wonder if sex toys will do the job...I'm lying down a lot at this point anyway, and most of the TV season finales have finished showing....

My blood pressure is fine, just like last weeks' level, and my hands are less swelled up than they were, so my OB is not worried about my feet. I had my usual tiny trace amount of protein in my urine, and otherwise looked good.

Oh and did I mention that the baby is over 8 pounds, give or take a pound? And that if I get induced on Sunday, the baby will have grown even more? (Technically we go in for a gel on Saturday night, and show up the next day for water breaking, etc.)

And did I mention that epidurals have to be turned down a touch, sometimes a lot, so that the mom can push effectively, and that I am really really scared by the size of this baby?

And that my other big fear is that now that we are so close to success----something bad will happen and this baby will be taken away from me, and I don't think I've ever ever been this stressed in anticipation of success or disaster in my whole freaking life?

Yeah, this all is killing me....

Monday, May 19, 2008

coming up for air

I'm not in labour and haven't been getting any more contractions, but I do feel pretty lousy.

See, about a week ago, I stopped taking my fragmin shots (low molecular weight heparin) and ever since then, I have felt really crappy, tired, nauseated and achy. Probably contributed toward the choking/heartburn issue....

Then yesterday, I started to swell up, feet, hands, and face. My head is pounding, but so far my eyes are okay, no visual disturbances. And since I stole some peestrips from my Doc's office a few times ago, I know I have no ketones yet. But I'm very very glad the baby is still moving and I see my doc in the morning.

For now, I'm just lying quietly and trying to keep everything elevated. If need be I'll go to triage, but I suspect that I will simply feel lousy from now until the baby is born, or until I'm allowed to take fragmin again.

As for why I stopped taking it? Apparently the medical myth that women can't take heparin and have an epidural endures to this day. There is no medical evidence that I can find that it is dangerous---just a theory about blood getting into the epidural space. But of course that presumes that heparin is overly thinning the blood, as opposed to people like me, who are achieving normal bloodflow and clotting levels. Anyway, as far as I have googled and pub med'ed, I can't find any randomized controlled trials, or really anything. not even a credible case report from a first world country. Which is odd since you'd think that with so many people taking baby aspirin and heparin and possibly needing c-sections or early deliveries, they'd study it, but they haven't.

So women like me have to risk blood clots, retained placenta, high blood pressure, preeclampsia, and risks to our babies, and for what? Some theoretical bullshit thing?

Have to stay calm, forget about stupid stuff....right, zeeeeeeeennnnnnnn.

On to some other subjects------

My husband bought me many many snacks when he went shopping the other day, like cookies and cakes etc. So although I am mostly eating healthy, I also have lots of yummy things to eat. Jos Louis, Oreos, fruit, and many other things. Plus we're having Indian food tonight. Weeeee.

Oh, almost forgot, a special link that I have sent many of you before by email, and that I have blogged about, is down. Early Path Placenta Pathology services has closed and Dr.Carolyn Salafia appears to now work for the New York Methodist Hospital Pathology department. The notice says that she still does consults for patients, and can now accept insurance, (there is a contact number for more info) but I have no idea what she charges for the service or how it will work. I'm pretty unhappy that she took down the website mostly because it was a very very good resource for patients trying to understand reports, and learn more about their placentas. I wish I had taken screen shots, but of course, I hadn't....oh well. If I learn more I'll let you know.

Another business I liked that has disappeared? Small Planet Diaper recycling. You see, prior to cloth diapers becoming pinless, and the green bin starting up in Toronto, the only thing you could do with disposable diapers was either chuck them in the garbage or hire Small Planet to come pick them up and recycle them. Oh yeah, technically, there was a point where you could drive the diapers to a municipal recycling depot and they would properly recycle the plastic, etc....when Kaz was a tiny baby and had colic round the clock, Mr.Cotta would take the weekly bag of diapers on a drive with the baby, and recycle away. We jokingly called it the "Shit Run", and I secretly called it "Momma's Two Hour break". It was the only time in the week when I had some quiet peace and calm. Bonus: I could feel kind of environmentally okay.

Now, if we use disposables, my only option is the Toronto Green Bin, which doesn't recycle diapers, but just sends the plastic parts to the garbage dump, and then lets the rest rot, until it seems dried out and ugly enough to spread on the side of the highways all over Ontario. They used to give it to farmers for free, but those smart fellows realized it was toxic and don't want it now it ends up on the highway edges.

And honestly, I'm not sure I can deal with cloth. I know, some of you do just fine, and make it sound super easy, blah blah.....but I'm really more of a disposable gal. I just wish Small Planet could still recycle them properly. That new deck you just installed? That was made from recycled plastic from old diapers. That oil spill that got mopped up super quick? That was cleaned up with the help of the reused absorbent beads in the core. That newspaper you are reading? Made of recycled paper from old diapers.

All picked up at my door, and clean new ones delivered, all courtesy of this lovely little company that has been driven out of business by the single stupidest city government ever. Sigh....oh well. Someday, I'll be in charge of something, and I swear, stuff like this will never happen.

I'll let you know what happens tomorrow at the Docs.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Nesting and contracting

I seem to have developed a desperate need to get things done in the last few days, not necessarily baby things, but random things.

Like I went out to get the car fixed, especially the seatbelt in the middle 2nd row, kind of an important thing to be working. I went to the drycleaner and the grocery store, and Home Depot and the gardening centre, and like twelve other places. And then I picked up the kids, and came home and started to plant stuff and water stuff and sort papers and tidy tidy tidy.

And I made Kaz put together the stroller, because if you had an 11 year old junior engineer in your house wouldn't you assign him the complicated construction of metal and plastic and stuff? And when he stops so he can get a snack and watch Naruto, would you ease up on the kid or would you pout and start to sulk and ask why no one cares IF THE BABY HAS NO STROLLER?????

And then when you can't get the baby's car seat off the base, with the supposedly easy one button release wouldn't you burst into tears and tell your husband that you can't have a baby because you are too stupid to operate the car seat, so you will just have to forget about the whole thing and not have a baby after all?

God, something is going on with me.....when I started nesting with Kaz, I had a weird compulsion to cover every shelf in my house with shelf paper. I also had to make sure every single bill was paid, and all of my ironing was done.

I'm sure you know this, but in the 11 years since, I have not given a shit about shelf paper AT ALL. I haven't cared about ironing ever since and I care about bills only when necessary.

And now I keep contracting. They are painful, so it's not Braxton Hicks, but it only seems to happen when I move. If I sit on my butt and surf, I'm okay, but if I walk further than 10 steps or up and down stairs, it's contraction time baby. Unevenly spaced and uneven in length, and not much back action, so I'm not going anywhere tonight, but ohhh they are here.

Plus this is my first day without antibiotics and my bladder is killing me again, so that sample in a peecup I gave today at the hospital better show something curable. Won't know for a few days until the culture comes back so I'm just crossing my legs until then.

Take care my peeps, I'm getting some more contractions and this typing thing is hard to do whilst breathing slowly.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

I finally figured out what it is

Considering that I've walked into a number of stores now, and I had barely bought a thing beyond a pack of diapers and an outfit from the Gap, you'd think I would know what the problem was.

And I've finally figured it out. See, everyone I meet in these stores has a pretty weird thing happening that I just don't understand. I can't relate to them. I am repelled by them.

They think that the whole point of having the baby is the accessories.

The decor.

The possessions they can acquire.

They, and the companies that cater to them have forgotten that the BABY is the endgame, the goal, the dream.

Now, I'm not saying that we infertiles and deadbaby mamas can't play a bit in that sandbox, cause our living kids will eventually need stuff anyway. Hell, we should get to taste a bit of honey after all the shit we've been through. But I do like to think that we have some perspective.

And every single damn store I walk into---no perspective. From Babies r' Us and WalMart to fancy wealthy momma stores, there are like twelve dozen colors and designs for each and every item, and no sales person so far particularly gives a damn about safety ratings or accommodating my need to get things delivered the day of or after the baby is born alive. Even in neighbourhoods where you'd think it would be different, it all seems to be about ordering 12 weeks ahead, and "Would you like that in midnight, tango, or ice?"

So I plowed through it by being honest with the clerks and making fun of the woman who showed up 4 months pregnant trailing various relatives and trying on slings and discussing color schemes. Cause you know, I'm charitable that way.

I finally succumbed to the consumerism in a limited way and ordered a crib, a dresser, and a hutch for the dresser. I'm going to order a matching shelving unit for books after I get everything in 6-8 weeks since I figure it may not all fit in that room. I ordered a basic neutral dresser and hutch because at some point I can make the kid keep it and just order a bed to replace the crib. I already own a slide rocker and footstool. And for now the baby is going to sleep in a bassinet that Lisa graciously loaned me and the clothes we have can go into an old dresser we kept.

I'm setting up a change station upstairs in the baby's room and one downstairs in the living room. So I bought 2 change pads and covers and some wipes and cream. And today, a diaper genie. For the disposable diapers I bought. (Here it comes---ducking)

And today a few other things, like a carseat, (Perego) and stroller (Bugaboo Chameleon). And a Tummy Tub with the little matching stand.

This was a hard thing emotionally, but I'm sort of over the hump on it. Now, if I could just figure out these crazy people who have panic attacks over not being able to get the matching designer colors for their crib sets and wall murals and make sure that, of course, it's all 100% environmentally friendly, organic and fair trade as well as trendy.


I'm never fitting in here, am I?

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

More drama

First off my Mother's Day was good right up until the end when my birth mother emailed Mr.Cotta to deliver some guilt, "I hope Aurelia had a good Mother's day." And also some awful pictures of my SIL whom I despise, and her two daughters.

You'll note that I do not refer to them as my nieces, frankly, considering their mother's history, who the hell knows who the father really is....and my SIL is the last person on earth I'd ever want to see after her casual cruelty to me so there you go. I've told my birth mother this, and told her that I would like to have a relationship with her, but not my half-brother or his family considering their pattern of endlessly hitting us up for money. The only conversations I've ever had with them involves them derisively crapping on my home, my possessions, my parenting skills....and of course, then the request for cash.

My birth mother never ever does this, (she has her issues, but I can deal with them) but she does insist that they have to be included. It's all or nothing, which leaves me and her, with nothing. Drives me nuts.

Also left me sleepless. Sigh....happy fucking mothers day, eh?


As for yesterday, I saw my OB and we settled on a definite induction date of May 25th. (38 weeks) If my cervix is closed, I get a gel the night before, and if my cervix is open we just break my water that day and have the baby. Dinkypie is currently measuring at 7.1 pounds. Not so dinky anymore I guess. More like Megababy. My dopplers look okay and my placenta could go longer, but at this point, even if the measurements are off by a pound, in two weeks he'll still be at least 8 pounds, maybe 9. If I went to 40 weeks, he might be 10 or 11 pounds and that scares me. I am pretty tiny.

So we're starting to trying to "naturally" induce and get my cervix to open a bit, with ahem, SEX. Which pretty much requires an act of engineering, or an act of God, or maybe a Cirque du Soleil membership. And we started last night, weeeeeeeee.

All in the name of duty, my dears, snicker.

Ironic considering how hard it was to keep my cervix closed before with Mac that now it's staying firmly shut. Prometrium anyone?

However last night, afterwards, I lay down flat (first stupid mistake) and tried to sleep. Next thing I know, I sat up bolt upright because I vomited, and aspirated the vomit, and choked.

And I couldn't breathe. AT ALL.

I panicked and started to wildly hit my husband in the chest, he jumped out of bed, hit the lights and tried to help. To no avail. I am terrified of dying at this point, turning blue and keep trying to cough the aspirated vomit out, but it kept getting worse. Mr.Cotta called 911, and helped me to the bathroom. I am intermittingly getting tiny bits of air, like getting oxygen through an eyedropper and desperately straining to get more. I keep trying to cough but can't.

And suddenly I'm surrounded by very very tall muscular firefighters and an EMS guy and two EMS women with an ambulance (I'm glad the women were there, since I wasn't wearing much at this point). They help me breathe, check out my vitals, figure out that the vomit hasn't entered my lungs, and is just in my bronchial tubes, and help me cough it out. The firefighters leave and the EMS people stay to monitor me, and we all decide not to go to the hospital since I won't get any sleep there and the crisis is past. Plus, I can call back if needed. Plus, MegaBaby was rocking and rolling and kicking perfectly.

Have I mentioned how much I love the people who work for City of Toronto Emergency Services Ambulance and Fire? Yep, just in case you weren't sure, I do. I love them a lot. They need a raise I think. A GREAT BIG ONE. And maybe a kiss. ANOTHER GREAT BIG ONE. I swear if I ever have the power to do it, they will know how grateful I am. Idiot politicians never do appreciate these guys.

I slept upright last night, with my husband watching on alert most of the time, and I'm pretty tired so I'm going to have a nap now. And take some more heartburn meds.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

I don't want to be there, so I'm somewhere else

I don't want to be sad on Mother's Day or grieving. I don't want to think about my lost children or my lost mothers.

I just want to think about my living kids, about this new baby, and about good and wonderful things.

I swear----every thought that passes through my brain involves baby, baby, baby, baby, baby. I am utterly single-minded and beyond focused. There is something about an approaching labour that turns me into a narcissist. Although I guess the argument could be made that labour and delivery is really about a mom and a baby, so it's not about me alone.

I know I have things to worry about with the rest of the family----but they'll live. And I know I should feel guilty about my sister-in-law having to spend money changing flights, but I don't care. (She promised to take care of my older kids while I'm in labour, then forgot and booked a vacation on the exact weekend I needed her. I admit it--I got upset and guilted her. She's coming back earlier now.)

I might have been able to find someone else, but I didn't want to.

I have to be selfish and curl up into a little ball and not think about what anyone else needs right now. They can't matter, they can't be a priority. I've got some sort of weird primal need to make this baby the one, the only, the sole priority.

I'm going to go play with my new iPod now. Load some music, think about living babies.....

Friday, May 09, 2008

And we have a verdict!

It's either a bruised or a cracked rib. Definitely okay on the placenta and definitely okay on the kidneys....only one little wee problem.

My ribs hurt like a motherf---er. Pass the codeine, and see you in the morning.

This kid must have the strongest feet and legs of any in utero entity ever. Definitely a runner, or a linebacker material. I just wish he'd learn to be gentle with his poor osteoporosis-prone mother.


I'm in Labour + Delivery triage, and I just thought I'd try out this mobile posting thing.

Basically that searing pain hurt so badly that my OB sent me in here. It's likely the baby kicked my ribs so hard that I have either cracked or bruised one.

We can't confirm that because I can't get an x-ray and an ultrasound wouldn't be definitive. But, gee whiz the resident agreed to give my tylenol! I am such a lucky girl!!! is so hard not to roll my eyes sometimes....God grant me the strength....

Updated---the staff doc just ordered an US to double check my placenta and make sure that it isn't a placental tear causing the pain. (Which was my secret fear all along however unlikely.) Have I mentioned how much I love seeing real Docs instead of residents?

Pray for a broken rib people!

Feet in my mouth

Feeling really down here....I really really screwed up in the last day or so, between being excessively late for various appointments, to commenting and emailing things that are the exact wrong thing to say to various people. My house looks like a disaster according to my husband, and he cannot understand why I can't keep it perfect. Meanwhile, things have disappeared all over the house? Half of Mac's clothes are missing? Both kid's are missing their asthma meds? Can't find them anywhere....

I am off my ADD meds, mostly because of my BP, and I am a total fuck-up as a result. Which has left me in tears and beating myself up.

Plus, Mr.Cotta's family is fighting over P. and what he wants to do now. P. is in a stage of anger and resentment at my husband and the rest of the family are choosing up sides, conveniently forgetting the thousands of dollars we spent on his care and support, and conveniently forgetting how close he came to death and that the only thing the Belgium government was going to do was put him in a hospital then jail. He has enormous legal problems if he goes back there, and can't afford lawyers, never mind supporting himself, so the joke is, how does he even afford a plane ticket? Oh geez, maybe the money we loaned him for his apartment? Sigh....He won't be allowed to see his ex-wife and kids due to the multiple restraining orders against what the hell is the point of going back?

He's conquered the depression, but he's still an asshole I guess, and instead of trying to put his life back together, get a job, get healthy, and make peace with his ex---he thinks email threats and legal fights are the way to go. And it's killing my husband because he knows that the only people who ever win in family law and divorce court are the lawyers. Literally, it is better to burn your money than spend it on a divorce lawyer because at least you'd be warm if you burned it.

So half the family is blaming my husband, when all he did was decline to unplug the life support machine and try to give the guy a chance. The other half just keeps tut-tutting and telling him they told him so---very helpful---not.

Does anyone think we needed this right now at a time when we are about to deliver a baby? Hopefully a live baby? Nice way to support us, eh?

Plus his business partner was just diagnosed with MALT Lymphoma, and we have no idea how that will work out. I'm just praying the guy is okay. He's pretty shocked right now and can't figure out what to do. The doctors have offered up various treatment plans, etc...but he can't decide which one is best.

As for me, I have a serious pain in my side, just around my left lung that will not leave even if the baby shifts. It's not gas, not intestinal, just very sharp pain. And that UTI? Is killing me because it is Group B Strep and I think it went up to my kidneys by the time I got the right antibiotics. I'm in so much pain I can barely see straight.

So as you can see--life sucks right now. I'm going to get a shower and see if that helps. Then maybe call my doctor.

Thank you for listening to my miserable I don't need any cheese with that. But a pat on the back would be okay?

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

yep, we're alive

I've had a very very long week, mostly punctuated by the pain of a UTI, and a fundraiser I worked on, essentially my last hurrah.

Since Monday night, I've been trying to catch up on my sleep, tossing and turning all night and napping during the day, complete with drooling on my couch pillows (soooo classy) and feeling like a fog has descended upon my head.

Good thing: we raised a lot of money and everyone praised my hard work to the skies.

Bad thing: some stranger was a stinker and stole an entire bag of tools (hammers, screwdriver set, etc....) that I had brought from home, along with all of our supplies for next year's fundraiser. Not expensive to replace, maybe a couple of hundred bucks, but still, I'm feeling grumpy about it. I don't feel like shopping to replace it all right now, and I'm also the kind of person who hates it if someone steals even a stick of gum from me. Petty, I know I need to let this go. I would gladly give someone whatever they need, they just need to ask....but fuck I hate thieves.

Anyway, feeling grumpy now, so here we are 35 weeks + and according to various friends who have been pregnant and would know---the baby has dropped, and I look very different. It's supposed to be a relief, and make it easy to breathe, but it doesn't feel like it. I am panting loudly at dinner and sound ridiculous, plus I snore at night insanely. ( I think I look like a golden retriever at dinner every so elegant.) The pressure on my bladder is getting worse, what with the giant baby head pushing on it and the UTI and the crazy pants they have for pregnant women these days. (What insane person thought that a tight elastic band running directly across the pregnant bladder or a tight band of fabric in the same place then attached to a giant elastic tummy covering was so fucking brilliant?) Has no one ever heard of loose and roomy? Sigh....meanwhile I look oddly flatter and lower and keep waking up in terror that the baby has shrunk. I know it hasn't but still--so odd.

At this weeks OB appointment, my urine was normal, but my hands and feet are swollen, and my BP was 120/62, not great on the upper part, I'm hoping that treating the UTI and getting some more naps will help.

One of my many male in-laws is trying to be supportive but feels very awkward about my pregnancy and keeps telling me stories about his pregnant mare and comparing me to yes, you guessed it, a horse. He is normally very erudite, very intelligent, very articulate, and very kind. He is Mr.Cotta's closest relative. He is also driving me insane. Why are men so awkward about pregnancy?

I've had so many odd comments from guys, and a couple of male friends who just act the guy who pointed and asked if my stomach size was an aberration, or the guy who said that this fundraiser must be a great way to distract myself from sitting around and staring at pictures of little footprints. *eyeroll*

I give up on this shit, I really do. Grieving mothers don't just sit around mooning all day at mementoes of our babies. Sometimes I look at them, but pretty rarely. Mostly on special anniversaries, otherwise it all stays put away. But, I guess to him, we must be the freaks of the world. Personally, I think he's the freak, for saying something so idiotic in a casual conversation, but maybe I'm just being too sensitive?

The women have been nice, especially a couple who kept telling me that I don't even look pregnant from behind, and that I only look pregnant in the front. Several gushed, very good for my ego. I knew it was crap, because I can look in a mirror and I know what back fat is....but who cares, I'm happy to accept the compliments, right?

I just find it bizarre that the only men who have said nice things to me in months, have been a security guard who told me I look lovely, and several gay men who told me I was glowing with joy, and like a walking ad for pregnancy. Made me blush! Eh, I should add Mac to this list as well, because he has been so cute and so nice to me. He keeps telling me I look beautiful and hugging and kissing my stomach. His older brother---ahem, could use some lessons in this area.

Anyway, next task is to finish buying/ordering stuff for the baby's room. At this point almost nothing will arrive before the baby is born, but I should at least order it all, and get the carseat and a few other things. I really do have to get myself in gear on this, never mind all the items needing repair all around the house. Of course, it's hard to repair all of that when I have no tools....

Thursday, May 01, 2008

What do you do?

I had something important to write and now, I don't know what the hell it was. Pregnancy brain? I'm just going to ramble and see what happens maybe.

I'm taking more medication for heartburn by combining the losec and some zantac, as well as switching the time of day I take my calcium. The losec is time release and I wondered if the calcium was binding to the rest of the losec and therefore, leaving me sick as a dog since I'm not getting the full dose? Anyway, I got some more sleep last night so eventually I may not feel like crap. Thing is, I have a whole bunch of symptoms that could be pregnancy-related or could be something else. And I have no idea how to tell the difference. Neither do my doctors.

Alternatively, I have caught some awful stomach intestinal bug that will never ever leave me and I will feel like hell forever. Here's hoping I'm wrong, eh? It's just that an irritable uterus could be caused by some irritable intestines snuggled up beside them, and meantime, what does this mean for the baby? I don't know---he's kicking away right now, just fine, but the whole thing makes me nervous.

It could also be nothing, just my imagination.



I missed meeting Pam and V. last night, and I feel terrible, I was just so tired I knew I'd fall on my face. And today LAS emailed and she was going to be in Toronto, but she ended up cancelling for work, so at this point, I'm not really getting out of the house. Even though I do have lots to do.


Oh to the people who commented on my last post, thanks, I know stories like that bother adoptive parents especially, but also anyone who has an interest in raising children, so I apologize. I kept thinking that maybe I was just bothered by it because I'm adopted, but if the rest of you think it was unacceptable---then maybe I can just say who cares about the diaper genie, you know? We had both gone through IF at the same time together, and so we were close at one time, and then after she started saying squidgey things about the kid, I felt like it was good for me to stay around her and the kid just in case, maybe influence the mom not to talk about the money thing....but after awhile I don't think she wanted me around either.

You see, I'm the adoptee who found her birth mother, and doesn't speak to her adoptive parents, and she knew there were really legit reasons----but she still never wanted me to repeat that story in front her daughter and give her ideas. Bizarre twist, this was also the case with some relatives of my birth mother. My birth mother's sister had adopted her kids, and said straight out that I was never ever allowed to meet them or her or go to any family event because she "didn't want my presence to give them any ideas."

Snort----yep, we adoptees who have found our birth parents are recruiting for our secret conspiracy group. For every adoptee we lure to the Dark Side, we get a free toaster. And damn, what I won't do for small appliances.

Or maybe I'm a disease, like I'm catching?

Somehow, I just don't think I'm quite that viral.

Yeah, I know here I am telling more bad stories, and making everyone feel like shit, but I do find it odd that out here in the blogosphere, so many adoptive parents are so well behaved and use all the right phrases, but in the real world, I hear a lot of stuff that would make you guys choke. After all, in the real world, there is no sign on my forehead saying "adoptee". No one knows if I don't tell them, and no one is careful about what they say. I hear uncomfortable stuff from other moms, non-adoptive moms too, but we all know what that's like. Like say, someone accidentally mentions that they spanked their kid, but you think spanking is horrible, so you choke on your coffee and excuse yourself. Well, I do the same when I hear an odd story from an adoptive parent who makes me feel uncomfortable and I'm not quite sure what to say. Mostly I choke and excuse myself, but sometimes I'll tell them I'm adopted and see what they say.
Mostly at that point they proceed to inform me that I must be so grateful that my adoptive parents took me in and then they make some crappy negative assumption about my birth parents---and then I roll my eyes and give up and walk away.

So what do you do when you hear odd stories from other parents, either adoptive or non-adoptive parents? Ignore them? Confront the person? Something in between?