Friday, April 23, 2010

The REAL Due Date

For some, this post may be TMI. So consider yourself forewarned. Here we are at April 23rd. My due date according to the midwives who are my care providers, and according to my LMP, was Monday April 19th.

Last weekend, as some may have heard, we had a false alarm. I had a lot of pain and discomfort but the contractions were random and difficult to time. After 2 hours of sleep on Friday night, we went to the hospital Saturday evening just to be checked. I was curious if any progress had been made through all this and I really wanted to make sure the baby was ok since my contractions seemed to be coming but not really going. It was like I'd feel the tightness and tension of a contraction but it would last 5-6 minutes before relaxing again. That didn't seem right to me. Either way, we were sent home.

Monday came and went. Tuesday I had a little bit of a moment. I had been noticing some wetness that I was positive was not urine. I had read that sometimes when your water breaks it's a large amount at one time or it can be a slow trickle. So wondering if this was a slow trickle, I called the doctor's office. They said I needed to be seen right away to determine if it was amniotic fluid. I rushed in, it was nothing. They said it was probably just increased discharge as my body prepares. No big deal. No sign of anything. Go back to waiting.

Meanwhile, I'm trying not to think about it at all. I wouldn't say I'm really stressed, but I've got a lot of people checking on me and calling to see how things are going, and asking what's new on Facebook. I wish I had better news for them. So sometimes I indulge and start reading online. In doing so the other day, I came across something that said if your due date is calculated strictly on your LMP, then it may not be accurate. I, for one, do not have 28-day cycles. Mine tend to be a few days longer. Therefore, the date of conception would be later in the cycle, and then the due date would end up being a few days later as well. Now, we're talking a matter of 5-7 days or so, not weeks, but still. So, I found a due-date calculator online ( that takes your cycle-length into consideration. With those calculations, my due date is between April 23-25. Soooooo, we may not really be late after all. However, don't tell my midwives that, because at our appointment on Monday we're supposed to be talking about scheduling an induction, and I really don't want to wait two more weeks!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

4/20 4:20 420

One amazing day, when we discovered that we were expecting a baby, we also learned that our baby was due to arrive on April 19, 2010. Wow, it sounded so far away! And as any mother would, I began to worry. My first concern? Ooooh, that is really close to 4/20. Ugh.

If you're my mom, 4/20 has no meaning. But if you're the rest of the world...
  • April 20 ("4/20" in U.S. date notation) has evolved into a counterculture holiday, where people gather to celebrate and consume cannabis.[1][2] In some locations this celebration coincides with Earth Week.[6][7][8] At events in the United States, it is common to hear about Abraham Lincoln, one of many American politicians known for past use of cannabis, who wrote that one of his "favorite things" was "smoking a pipe of sweet hemp".[9] Some events may have a political nature to them, advocating for the decriminalization of non-medical cannabis in the United States. (Wikipedia)
  • According to Steven Hager, editor of High Times, the term 420 originated at San Rafael High School, in 1971, among a group of about a dozen pot-smoking wiseacres who called themselves the Waldos, who are now pushing 50. The term was shorthand for the time of day the group would meet, at the campus statue of Louis Pasteur, to smoke pot. Intent on developing their own discreet language, they made 420 code for a time to get high, and its use spread among members of an entire generation. While our teens feel that they know something we don't, you can let them in on the fact that it was your generation that came up with the numbers. A quote from one of the Waldos in the High Times article states, "We did discover we could talk about getting high in front of our parents without them knowing by using the phrase 420." Fortunately, your teenagers will not have that same option. (
  • International Smokers Holiday, celebrated on the fourth month twentieth day on the fourth hour and twentieth minute p.m. (also a minor daily tradition to smoke at 4:20 p.m. tradition started by a group of students in california that used to meet at a certain place at this time after class daily. (normally marijauna), 4:20 was a code word so teachers and administration would not catch on to their activities. (Urban Dictionary)
...Just to share a few. So this is the only day I DID NOT want our baby to be born. Fortunately, there are no further signs of labor so far today, though the day is young. And yes, I said "further." It's true. I've been having contractions and even some pain. But nothing has been consistent enough to be called labor just yet. Yesterday was only the due date, so if we give or take a few days we're still well within a reasonable time frame without being considered "late."

My focus right now is not to stress out about it. I've gotten a lot of suggestions about ways to start labor, progress labor, you name it. Honestly though I feel like the more I try the less likely it is to happen. My approach is to go about business as usual and let my body and the baby do the deciding. My leave began yesterday, and though I probably could have continued going to work (especially since I have a sub already teaching my classes), after a rollercoaster weekend of pain and contractions, I felt like it was not in anyone's best interest to make a scene at work when things actually did go into action. So I am at home for the long haul, taking care of some last minute things around here and otherwise trying to relax. I've had a lot of visitors (you know, moms, sisters) since Friday, and today Miss Carsen and I are on our own... to my knowledge. We have a few things on a to-do list that we might get to, or we might not. Life will go on either way. I'm just trying to remain peaceful and calm and trusting that she'll be here when the time is right (like, maybe tomorrow since that's the day I picked in the pool...)

Friday, April 16, 2010

No Baby Yet...

I know you're checking like every five minutes to see if there is any baby news (ha!), but today there is not. We're about at the same point I was when I posted on Wednesday. Still feeling the Braxton-Hicks, still feeling some cramping from time to time but nothing regular, and nothing painful. We're just waiting it out.

I finished my last day of teaching today and my sub/intern is ready to take the reigns on Monday, all of my internship hours are accounted for, Josh made it through a massive conference yesterday and today, my sister got through her work day today and is now off until Wednesday, Jennie and Jenna both got their big tests over with this week.... could it be about time for a baby? I think so! Here's to hoping this little girl has some mercy on us and makes her appearance already :]

Meanwhile, this is what 39 weeks pregnant looks like on me:

We're about as ready as we can be...

We just need a little Carsen to put in all those things!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Say What?! Wednesday

Guess what? It's Wednesday and I'm writing Say What?! for the week! You know how this is possible? Because my grad work is D-O-N-E, DONE! I do have some papers to grade, but who cares about those.. :]

So this is a good story. It makes me so happy that I have only two days left of work.

This week I got an email from a student through our online grading system. Boy, are those things a blessing and a curse! Information is great, but sometimes its way too much. Kids having online access to their grades is nice because you can hold them accountable for knowing what their grade is. At the same time, it means they can nag and harass you about every little thing they see or don't see on there. A great example is an email I got this week. One young man had a D average as of my last update. There have been a number of other assignments turned in since that point, I've just been a wee bit swamped trying to get my grad work done while still planning lessons and working all day and completing an additional 20 hours per week of internship. So this child takes it upon himself to email me about the fact that I haven't posted the new assignments yet. Here's what he had to say:

Dear ms beck please start grading and if you already have graded then u need to post our assignments on engrade my grade has stayed the same on engrade since the interms came out and when ever we ask you you say look on engrade well I'm looking and it's not up to date I don't mean to be rude but my mom still thinks I have a D and I can't prove to her if I do or don't because you won't update so please either update or tell is our grades when we ask thank you.
Nice, right? So Mrs. Beck, if you graded papers faster then I wouldn't have a D. Riiiiiiight. My response included the advice not to earn a D in the first place if he didn't want his mom to see that he had a D.

So today while I was -- whatta ya know -- grading papers, I was going through an assignment for which students were asked to evaluate President Truman's two options for ending the war with Japan and then share their opinions on which was the better choice. One kid began by talking about what a tough choice "Harriet Truman" had to make.

Ahhhhh, children :]

So, want to hear an update???
Well, we went to see the midwife again yesterday and she said I was still 1-2 cm dilated, so there was no real change from last week. I found this a tiny bit discouraging since I was of course hoping for some more progress. I do feel like I'm progressing in other ways though. I've felt more Braxton-Hicks contractions in the past few days, and have felt a little crampy. Not really sure what that means, but I hope it means she's getting ready for the big day. My next appointment is on Tuesday of next week and I'm crossing my fingers that we don't make it that long!
In the work arena I've got my substitute back in my classroom ready to take over at any moment. I'm only teaching through Friday even if I decide to go back in next week so I don't have to use my leave if we don't have a baby by then. I'm pretty much ready to hand things over. I've got about all of the outstanding papers graded, and I even showed her the grading system today. I made sure to warn her of all the joy she'll get from the children and parents having constant access to your gradebook. I also managed to erase an entire class and all of their grades while doing this. It was a lovely adventure. I was unable to recover everything, but did manage to find everyone's current averages with the blessing of the "back" button. Best part about it though? I'm too close to the end to care :]

Well I think I'll take advantage of the fact that all of my homework is done and go to bed early! I was going to grade some more papers, but I've just made the decision instead to celebrate my last night of class and treat myself to some extra "sleep" (or whatever it can be called these days). Just keep your fingers crossed that the next post is announcing Carsen's arrival!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Update & Pictures

Well, I've only spent all day uploading and editing these pictures.... aka avoiding the work I need to do. The blog update has been long overdue, and I just decided that I was going to take some time today to take care of it. It might not be very wordy, but there are pictures to look at, so hopefully it will suffice.

What's new?
I'm on spring break this week with one more week after this to work before my due date. I've decided that if Carsen doesn't arrive by the due date then I'll continue working until she does. The only reason I decided to do that is because my substitute (also our intern) will be with me in my classroom starting on Monday when we return from spring break. So by the following Monday (the 19th) she should be ready to take over anyway. So if she's teaching by then, I can just be there in the background making sure the transition goes smoothly. However, with that said I have my doubts about making it TO the due date, much less past. More on that in a minute.

In other news, I've completed my internship hours (not really, but I decided that I will be writing in whatever is necessary for them to total 400). I've also finished 2 of 3 assignments I've had to do over this break. The only one left is my portfolio which I'm hoping doesn't take too long. The majority of it should be really easy. It will be a big sigh of relief to have my school work done completely. I've purchased my cap & gown for graduation and only need to get my mentor's signature on a few things and I'm good to go. Oh happy day! At some point in my life I will look back on this spring and wonder how I ever made it happen. And then I can be proud of myself because I did :]

Carsen's room is coming along swimmingly! There are still a lot of gift bags and boxes in there, but most of her clothes are washed, her bed is made, her diaper genie is ready for the first little diaper, and the rest is just details. I've been trying to just unpackage everything possible so I'm not fighting with it all when I need it STAT. So toys and bath supplies are ready for use, blankets are washed and in the closet, the diaper bag is ready for use except for a change of clothes (who knows how big she'll be and I figure I'll pick out her spare clothes when we're going somewhere so they can be weather appropriate). We also have her bassinet in our room and ready for business. The carseat is installed, the stroller and swing are ready for use, the pack 'n play is being shipped and should be here soon. Overall I'm feeling pretty accomplished and like our major bases are covered.

Let's see some pictures...

This is 34 weeks, I think. I still look small and cute :]

This is 37 weeks, and a shirt that my sister kindly lent to me since all my stuff was winter and it was going up to 90 degrees! It just happens to make me look very pregnant -- which I am.

I took these today - 38 weeks!!

We had our 38-week check up yesterday and the midwife was surprised at our progress! She said I was already dilated 1-2 cm, 80% effaced and "very ripe" and she could feel the baby's head. I was surprised myself. She said that she would bet her bottom dollar (her words) that we'd be meeting our little Carsen before her due date!

I found this to be very exciting news :] My husband has been totally on edge ever since I shared that with him. If I lean, touch my belly, exclaim anything, make any kind of grunt or non-word sound his eyes get big and he freezes as if he's going to need to catch a baby in a second. It's very cute :] I'm thinking we'll make it through this weekend but maybe not to the next one. We shall see!

And quickly before I go... how about a little Say What?! This is a cute one.
My students were creating an illustrated timeline and one of the events was the dropping of the atomic bombs in WW2. So the student stands up to show his group's illustration and describe the event for us, but he forgot the names of the cities. So I helped him out and whispered, "Nagasaki" and he says, "Oh yea, yea Nagasaki and Konichiwa!"

Happy spring! :] Next post could include baby pictures.....!!!