February 5, 2001
Pregnancy Miscellany

Today's Pic
No swelling of the face, so I'm all right.
One year ago (or thereabouts): It's cancer.

23 weeksExplain this to me: my ankles swell up after only an hour or two of being at the library. It's highly uncomfortable; I can actually feel the water sloshing around as I walk. I come home from work, put my feet up, and within a couple of hours I'm back to normal.

This weekend I was constantly on the move and on my feet. We cleaned the apartment from top to bottom, took a friend on a lengthy tour of Eric's plant, and played pinball for an hour or so. My ankles didn't even show a hint of swelling.

Today I'm back on the job, and BOOM! I'm carrying around balloons over my feet. What is up with this? Boss-Lady conjectured that the atmosphere inside the library could be affecting me oddly, but I have no idea how much weight to lend that theory. I actually drink more water, not less, when I'm at work, so that can't be it, either. Can stress make you retain water? Can severe dryness?

23 weeksThe first day it happened, I called Mary Ann in a panic, fearing the worst. She calmed me down, told me to put up my feet (already did that), drink tons of water (I had a glass in my hand as we spoke), and see about getting some sort of aquatic exercise, since I'd probably have to deal with this swelling for the rest of the pregnancy. I checked into it, but one apparently has to be at least semi-wealthy to have an opportunity to swim in the winter around here. I've stepped up my walking regime to compensate; Eric and I are walking in the mornings at least four times a week now.

This doesn't bode well for me being able to keep working right up until the end of my pregnancy. I'm only twenty-three weeks now. I'm not worried about the swelling per se, though; apparently, the swelling is only really indicative of a problem when it moves up into one's hands and face.

And anyway, Mom told me that the same thing happened during her pregnancies. The similarities astound. I'm still keeping fingers crossed that they'll extend to cover the labor itself, since she had a painless one with me.


I am getting so sick of this area and all it doesn't have to offer: no diaper services, only one evening La Leche League group, and now no non-hospital Lamaze childbirth prep classes. Barbara and Joy expressed concern that Eric and I take some sort of class, even if we had to throw out a good portion of what we heard; I gather that the years of reading we've done up to this point will only go so far in getting us through the actual birth process, and a live, group experience will be extremely beneficial in helping us deal with the rest.

Here's the thing: I'm not in the market for a time-waster. I was in no mood at all to pay good, hard-earned money to have some nurse scoff at us for deciding to birth at home, all the while extolling the virtues of continuous and internal fetal monitoring. I've got better things to do with my time.

I decided, instead, to expand my horizons. Just over the state border, about forty-five minutes away in Ann Arbor, I found exactly what I was seeking: a group of Bradley teachers, two Birthworks teachers, and the Holistic Midwifery Institute, which offers independent classes of a very crunchy leaning. After much debate and querying of several of my birthing resources, we decided in favor of the Birthworks classes, which will begin in March.

I think the main point for Birthworks in Eric's eyes was the fact that they'll be held on Saturday mornings for ten weeks. "Ten Saturdays in Ann Arbor!" he grinned when I told him. "We can eat at Mongolian Barbecue, Zingerman's, the Cottage Inn..."

"And take some childbirth classes."
"Honey, let's keep our priorities straight, okay?"

Seriously, I'd love nothing more than to move to Ann Arbor, say, tomorrow. Every person to whom I spoke during my search was cooler than the last. Hey, they even have diaper service up there!


We're still on the search for housing. We found a relatively nice townhouse this weekend, but after much discussion, we've decided that the cost savings wouldn't be worth the risk. It had only two bedrooms, and we were considering setting up the office in the basement; Eric, in the end, was too worried about flooding to actually go through with it. Even though it had never flooded in the memory of the property owner, the drain was a bit rusty - too great a warning signal to be ignored.

Eric and I had a long discussion yesterday afternoon. I told him that my only concern at this point was the relative unchildproofability of our current apartment. He's agreed to really work on improving the tech situation while we continue to search, which we'll be doing at a much-reduced rate of speed. We want to find the right house, not the most expediently obtained. If we have to wait until after the baby comes, then that's what we'll do.

I told Eric today that I was tired of searching. I really am; I'm feeling a strong urge to not upset my life right now. I want to begin preparing for the baby, and staging a big move would only disrupt that at the moment. I want to move, but I don't want to focus on it so much. If we are to move, it will only be through a more concerted search effort on his part. He agreed, and I felt much better.

In the meantime, we have two major projects facing us: first, clean out the garage, and second, move the junk out of the baby's room and into the newly vacated garage space. Only then will we be able to begin the preparation of the baby's home, which I'm aching to create. I believe Eric's going to have to recruit help for the job, though, since some of that junk is quite weighty.


Bad nightmares this weekend, involving premature births and screaming, inconsolable babies. All the while, though, throughout all the dreams, I was never able to determine any of the infants' sexes. They were dressed in green and yellow and had gender-neutral features. I guess I'm really not to know what we're having!

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