Last Friday morning (Jul 16th) was our 30 week midwife appointment. For a simple appointment, with no other 'procedures' scheduled, it took a long time. I spent just over 90 minutes in the office...but we got a lot accomplished.
In short, all is well with the Bean. I have gained 21 pounds since my first appointment at 9 weeks (about 28 pounds over pre-pregnancy weight according to my bathroom scale). My blood pressure is still really low, which is fantastic news for someone with chronic hypertension! Beana's heart rate was in the high 130s, and several times during counting, Jellybean had very noticeable heart rate accelerations. Again, a very good thing. Belly measurement was right on target. We reviewed the report from the last Maternal Fetal Medicine appointment (since I saw MFM after midwifing last time, instead of before), and she confirmed that Bean is measuring in the 61st percentile. Again...very reassuring, since we were starting on the downward slope to IUGR at this point with Gracie.
So, as things stand now, I am scheduled to see MFM again on July 29th, as well as the new midwife. We have added a non-stress test to the string of appointments for that day. After that, I will go twice a week for non-stress tests; one of those appointments each week will also include an ultrasound and a midwife check. These appointments are scheduled out through August 20th, with the anticipation that I will see MFM again on August 26th, unless they decide otherwise next week.
After the appointment, we hit the road for Beana's first trip to NYC. We visited with friends from college and did some 'touristy' things in the city...we did a Yankee game, the Rockefeller Center observation deck, the Brooklyn Bridge, Little Italy, the Bodies Exhibit (This exhibit is set up in various cities across the country...if you have the chance to catch it anywhere, I highly recommend it! I will put a disclaimer here for all BLM and BLD...there is a section of the display that is nothing but pregnancy related. Jeff and I both had to use the bathroom about half way through, and we had to go through the rest of the exhibit still in front of us to get there. We turned a corner and stopped dead in our tracks, as we found ourselves face to face with a non-living baby on display in front of us. Not something we were expecting to see. When we finally got back to that room on our way through the remainder of the exhibit, we were both able to go through all of it without too much problem...but I know that it is not something that every BLM or BLD would want to walk into unexpectedly. Despite this unexpected part of the exhibit, I recommend the exhibit as a whole!). When I was pregnant with Gracie, Jeff and I somehow managed to not have our picture taken together, so we never really had a 'family' photo; we also managed to not do one together after she was born. So I made sure that we got a 'family' photo of the two of us with Beana while we were being touristy.
So now down to the nitty gritty. I know that some of you reading here have already been through the rainbow baby process, and that several of you are walking this road with me right now. But I have to say that this is one of the most difficult things that I have ever done. It goes without saying that going through L&D to give birth to a dead baby is hard, and it goes without saying that burying your child is hard, but not everyone expects this process to be as difficult as it is. Some days aren't bad...they are normal days. I have thoughts about Gracie, but I don't link them to this pregnancy. Some days are a little rougher, and dead baby thoughts creep in amongst the pregnancy thoughts every chance they get.
Some days I feel like I cannot get it together... I am eating well, but my diet was impeccable with Gracie, and I wanted it to be the same this time around. I feel like this baby is sucking the life right out of me; I am sleeping more soundly at night than I did with Gracie (Gracie practiced for her Stomp audition at night; Beana thankfully does her practicing during the day), yet I am still exhausted. Some nights I skip dinner and go to bed as soon as I get home...skipping dinner is not helping physically or mentally. I am behind on my Hypnobabies home study - I wanted to be all the way through it by now so I could be working on the self-hypnosis. I am going to need all the practice I can get for the self-hypnosis, as relaxation and anything even remotely related is not something that comes easily for me. There are things that we did not have ready for Gracie, as we thought we had a few more weeks. I am getting to the point that I feel like I should have that stuff ready to go now, but I keep procrastinating. My list keeps getting longer and longer...car seat and stroller (which we have had for almost 15 months, yet the box is still unopened) rewashing blankets and other non-clothing items that are on the shelves under the changing table, purchasing some cloth diapering stuff, purchasing some of the other 'essential' baby gear that we have not gotten yet, packing a hospital bag...you get the point. Part of the problem is just old fashioned procrastination. I think a bigger part of the problem is not wanting to jinx myself, and I honestly think another large part of the problem is that my brain does not fully comprehend that pregnancy is supposed to end with actually bringing a baby home.
But, all of this aside, we are moving forward one day at a time. We are trying to live in the good right now and hoping that it is enough to balance everything out from one day to the next...and we are very much looking forward to the day in the not-so-distant-future that we bring our daughter home to love and raise...