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w October 31, 2006

Two Worries Down

Ultrasound totally uneventful, baby right on target for age, maybe even a *little* petite, though nothing out of the realm of normal (and like Gene and I are the biggest people in the world), and even better news, head is down. I won't get gross or graphic, but let's just say that makes the likelihood of a C-section much less so, if at all. Again, not to get graphic, but she is *definitely* a girl...I'm going to have to steal a line from Dooce here and confirm I saw her, ah, cheeseburger. So I can go ahead and wash the pink stuff, and Gene can bemoan the serious levels of estrogen that are going to be running around this house in about thirteen years. She was clearly trying to take a nap while being poked at, but we got a cute (albeit smooshed) view of her face with arms tucked up above her head, which is ironically just like the Bean sleeps.

As much as I wish I didn't have to deal with all the blood pressure fooferol, I definitely feel like I can handle that now that I know the other worries can be shelved.

In other news, the Bean, my best friend and I went to our local Mountain Mike's Pizza to partake of their "Hallowe'en All You Can Eat" for a mere $5.95 (and the Bean ate for free as she was in costume)...I'm not sure I want to have pizza again for a very, very, very long time.

by Heather Hoffman at 5:18 PM

w October 30, 2006

And The Fun Never Stops

Had to go in to the doctor today because my blood pressure has been hovering at a slightly uncomfortable level (though not enough for her to order me on bedrest)---it did the same thing last Monday, and of course, as soon as I schlepped over to the hospital to get hooked up to monitors, it plummeted to perfectly acceptable NON-pregnant levels, probably because it's so freaking boring in those rooms you basically slip into a coma.

At any rate, blood pressure is making my doctor minorly edgy, and now I am on this schedule of going into the clinic twice a week to get that checked, the fetal heartbeat checked, blood drawn---oh, and I have to do a urine collection over 24 hours to check for protein and all those other nasties. Nice. OH, and I am measuring a bit large this week, so have to go over to Stanford for an ultrasound tomorrow. OH, and we're not sure the baby has turned head down yet, so if she hasn't by next week, we start talking about how to turn her or maybe C-section.

The most frustrating thing is that I feel...ab...so...lute...ly...fine. Tired, yes, but what woman in late pregnancy isn't? To my doctor's credit, she did say that she is not completely stressing out just yet, but would prefer to "stare me down" for a few weeks so that we don't miss anything, and in all likelihood, all is fine. That being said, we are more than likely looking at another induction once I cross the magic 37 week threshold, so if Erin is reading this, you may get your wish and have a birthday niece...still, that's only two, two and a half weeks away, so I'm rather glad I got all the baby clothes and blankets washed yesterday.

by Heather Hoffman at 1:47 PM

w October 29, 2006

High School Revisited

Well, not really, but I had an interesting revelation the other night. Anyone who knows me reasonably well knows that my favorite author is Robertson Davies; in the past few weeks, I've been re-reading all my collection, probably as a bit of a security blanket in this period of late pregnancy fidgets. I have to admit here, though, that my favorite trilogy is NOT the Deptford, but rather the much campier Salterton (in my defense, my favorite book is The Cunning Man, which I think "ranks" with the Deptford Trilogy, or so at least I've read). The first book of the Deptford is Fifth Business, much ballyhooed as Davies' finest work, etc.; it is also the book I was forced to dissect in Grade 13 English. While I understand *why* this was on the curriculum, I'm here to affirm that there is no faster way to make a teenager loathe a book than to make him or her pick it apart and write essays on it and have to tease out the "right" interpretation. In all fairness, my teacher was actually really good, and she certainly wasn't a fascist about how we approached a book, but it was just TOO much to ever make me like the book as pleasure reading.

However! I have worked my way through most of my treasured Davies collection, leaving Fifth Business and its siblings until near the end, almost dreading it, really, but determined to give it another try. Imagine my shock when I fetched up at chapter 5 or 6 the other night and realized how much enjoyment I had garnered from the last umpteen pages. How did this happen? I guess the point of this post is to encourage anyone to go back and re-read some of the books that were foisted on you in high school, and see what you think with a decade plus remove. You might be pleasantly surprised.

The Salterton Trilogy is still my favorite though. And I need to get back my Samuel Marchbanks Omnibus from a friend before my "confinement".

by Heather Hoffman at 9:20 PM

w October 25, 2006

Boozy Post #2

Can you tell I'm getting close to the end of my pregnancy? Yes, it is that time, the time to start fantasizing about what lovely drinks I will be able to (very occasionally) have in a matter of weeks. Gene and I recently discovered what is probably the perfect Heather cocktail (and no, I didn't try it, I just read the ingredients, relax): the Negroni.

Gin. Campari. Sweet vermouth. Lemon twist.

Two, please!

by Heather Hoffman at 10:33 AM

w October 23, 2006


It's probably heresy to even think this, let alone write it down, but I have to tell you, this weather is kicking my ass. I *know* it's not that hot out, but y'all have to believe me, it feels probably 15 degrees warmer to me than to non-pregnant people. About the only thing that got me through the summer we had was chanting "just wait until October, just wait until October"...and lo, here we are at nearly the end of October, and it's still upwards of 75 degrees and fullllll of sunshine. I recognize that this is what makes California so appealing to the wider majority of the world, but you know, I would be loving Toronto right about now.

Forty two degrees as a high. Rain and snow showers. Gorgeous. I could just go stand outside without a coat and feel just about right.

Just wait until November. Just wait until November.

by Heather Hoffman at 1:58 PM

w October 14, 2006

Comforting Thought

As I was doing my daily loop of home-school-errands-home-school, I had this interesting realization: Bean and Peabo are going to be nearly five years apart, and thus each will have "alone time" with Mom during that oft-touted all important first five years. While I admit this is not entirely the scenario I imagined for myself at this point in my life, I do feel fortunate that I can stay at home with both of them separately. I also don't feel as badly for having them farther apart than Gene and I might have originally planned. As a friend pointed out yesterday, I basically will have two first-borns...and that is maybe not a bad thing. And eventually, I will get out of the house and be able to talk about things other than diapers and kids' tv shows and are pasta stars tastier than pasta circles. Won't I be fun then!

by Heather Hoffman at 10:42 AM

w October 09, 2006

Am I A Statistic?

The day of truth came about five minutes ago when I realized I could no longer wear my wedding ring with any degree of comfort; I also didn't want to get to the point where it would have to be cut off my finger. I had given up on the engagement ring months ago, but alas, today I am now an unwed teenage mother.

It's a joke.

My great-grandmother's engagement ring, circa 1912 (I think) fits perfectly, even loosely, however, so I am going to wear that to at least look married for the next eight weeks. It's quite lovely---two very small sapphires in "starburst" cutouts flanking a similarly situated small diamond in a wide gold band. And it slides on and off my ring finger with no swearing, pinching, or weeping. Oddly enough, for all the hypertensive issues I had with the Bean, I don't recall having to take my rings off. Go figure. At any rate, this is not an uncommon problem, and it's shortlived.

Speaking of the Bean, she has decided to be intractable recently, and has resolutely refused to repeat (how alliterative!) her walking feat of last Thursday. That being said, when I manipulate her legs during our exercises, I can feel the solidity and the surety of step...okay, I really didn't mean to get that frivolous with alliteration a second time. Maybe the ring really did cut off blood flow...at any rate, we know she can do it, she knows she can do it, and her strength just keeps improving. I'm almost thinking she got startled by her success last week, and is processing all the ramifications. No one is going to let her off the hook from now on out, and we'll get a second performance, I feel sure. It's funny though...I've had to be so patient for so long, you'd think it would be easy to continue in that vein a little longer. Not so! I freely admit I was hoping we'd go from unsteady supported walking to tear-assing around the house in a week, but I do realize this is all a process. A very, very long process, but we have seen nothing but upward trajectory, regardless of how agonizingly long it has taken. So. Keep sending strong peripatetic vibes towards Emerald Hills...

by Heather Hoffman at 5:49 PM

w October 05, 2006

Red Letter Day

I went to pick up the Bean at therapy today, and heard that she had a great day, etc, etc. Was standing there holding her two hands in front, just sort of expecting her to enjoy standing.


She stepped forward. And then again. And then kept walking. I was still holding her hands, and her balance leaves a bit to be desired, but SHE WAS WALKING. We walked all around the classroom, the pride radiating from her smiling face. It was...I can't even begin to explain what it felt like. What it FEELS like. I guess, though, it feels as if I've had a ten ton boulder stuck inside my chest for nearly five years, and it was suddenly yanked out in one fell swoop...and I almost don't know what to do with it. I sat in our bedroom on the floor and just wept for about twenty minutes, those huge, gulping, exhausting sobs that leave you utterly scraped out.

I know I said this with the seven steps, but it remains the truth...I don't care if we have to maintain this supported walking for a while, however long that while is. The new plateau is huge enough, it's nearly enough. But to be honest, if it only took a week to get from that first deliberate single step to deciding those legs could move in sequence for an extended period of time...who knows where we'll be this time next year? Next summer? Next MONTH? She's utterly worn out right now; I just looked in on her and she's sleeping like a cherub. I gave her ice cream after lunch and am going to make chocolate chip cookies this afternoon. I almost feel like I should throw a block party, or rent out the Ritz.

Nearly five years. But we have crossed the Rubicon.

by Heather Hoffman at 2:08 PM