23

I’ve always had a special place in my heart for the number 23. I was born on the 23rd. I wore the number a few times during school for various sports teams (when I wasn’t just trying to get a uniform that wasn’t completely trashed by the students who’d worn it for the past decade). My due date is November 23, 2014. And this just happens to be Week 23 of this crazy pregnant ride.

Speaking of crazy, the dreams are really crazy and weird these days, but some of them are really cool. The running dreams are the craziest. Last night: I was running in a group with assorted Oiselle women, including the one and only Lauren Fleshman giving me advice about setting goal paces and, well, just flat out going for them. (I have no idea if I’ll ever get the opportunity to meet Lauren, but I must say she’s pretty persuasive, even in my dreamworld.) We start running and I keep thinking to myself, I’m going out way too fast; there is no way I’m keeping this up. The course was an out and back through what seemed like a shopping mall/convention center/hotel, and as we passed the halfway point and started running toward the finish, my legs were still flying. The race ended in a hotel room (I know, I said they were weird) and not only did I cut six minutes off my best 5K time to date (somewhere in the 28 minute range), I was congratulated by Sally Bergesen with a high-five. Yeah. It was the kind of dream you wish would go on and on and then your two year old comes crashing in the bedroom at 6:00AM.

There have been multiple running dreams: one running at night, one running so fast my legs were floating above the ground. There was a good softball dream where I snagged an unbelievable line drive. I haven’t played ball for over a year (maybe even closer to two), so that was a surprise. My running dreams are usually the ones when you can’t seem to get your legs moving and they feel completely disconnected from your body. To have dreams when I’m running fast – well, it’s a nice change. Especially considering my running reality is the exact opposite of fast.

Wednesday had been my last run outing, so maybe it was a little of that plus the  baby tucking itself into a semi-comfortable place (for once) in my ever growing expanse, but the first tenth of a mile actually felt, dare I say it…

Nice.

And then about a block later, I was horribly out of breath and had to dial it back a notch.

The bladder pressure wasn’t bad, my legs felt pretty good, and while stretching it out to three miles was tempting, I decided to not push my luck and settle for two. It was the right choice.

Flashing back to when my clothes fit better. May 8, 2014:

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This morning, July 28, 2014:20140728-093627-34587564.jpg

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I made sure I took the most awkward photo possible for this last one, post-morning two miler. I know I’m a real fashion plate with that compression socks/capri combo.

I’ve seen a lot of women who’ve recently given birth who are right back into their fitness routine three post-birth (some even after a caesarian!) and I’m just dumbfounded. I’ve kept up with the running, hoping that it will help me after the baby is born (and also during delivery) but the idea of coming back that quickly?  With my first, I sat around for almost a year before I attempted to get back into shape (dumb) and with my second, it was three weeks before I even attempted a walk of any considerable length (1.28 miles) and my first run? About four and a half weeks after baby was born:

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Maybe I am unfairly comparing myself to athletes of a completely different caliber than me, or maybe I will surprise myself and find that the running, as intermittent as it’s been lately, plus the walking, will make things a little bit easier in December. Fingers crossed for the latter.

I admit that I have running on the brain lately; seeing a bunch of ladies kicking ass at the Eugene Marathon this weekend, and seeing my team/var/run mates killing long runs in stupid hot heat made me even more run sick.  But the thing I’m worried most about these days are my blood glucose levels, which have been considerably higher over the past few weeks. I go and take that (gestational diabetes) test again in less than a month (anytime after Aug 17 and the 26 wk mark) and though I’m not a betting woman, I’d bet on me completely bombing it, just based on the numbers I’m seeing in the morning. I’m riding the high end of the acceptable range, which was never the case with my last pregnancy. I was always well within the limits set by my doctor, and I was doing less exercise than I am now. I was also heavier (by about eight pounds),  but also two years younger. This advanced maternal age shit sucks.

So I’m preemptively denying myself my morning bowl of steel cut oats (and it kills me) and trying to take it easy in the carb department, which is tough because I can’t even tell you how badly I really want a [insert random baked good here] right now. My desire to not deliver an enormous baby with a predisposition to a lifetime of health/diabetes issues must trump my desire for pastries. (Reminder to Self: This is not about me.)

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Truth be told, since sweatpants (or no pants) are the only clothing items that feel comfortable with these additional 25 lbs, I could probably benefit from laying off the apple fritters.

I will, however, accept any care packages of baked goods after this kid is born. Email me for my mailing address.

Hormone Week (22)

While waiting in the photo department of Walmart, a missing child alert sounded over the loudspeaker. Within seconds, I saw the aisles full of store employees. Workers stopped stocking shelves and immediately started searching the aisles. Extra hands in the deli department were dispatched. About ten minutes later, the alert ended and the two-year-old was found.*

And now you know the reason for my first emotional breakdown of the day. It is getting bad when I can’t even make it through a ten-minute trip to Wally World without losing it.

The hormones are a bitch today. Some days are better than others, and today is not one of those days.

22 weeks: Usual discomforts, but I feel pretty good. Latest development: leaving the bed requires rolling; there is no sitting up anymore. Bending down to tie running shoes is also a little bit of an exercise. The running continues, but it’s slowing down and feeling like more of a challenge. At this point, I’m getting out there for the baby; the slow pace is a bit of an ego killer. (Kid: this is a jumpstart to your health that your older siblings didn’t have, so I expect great things from you.)

I keep telling myself that this will be worth something in Dec/Jan when I (plan to) get back to running.

 

*Upon leaving the store I noticed a state trooper parked next to the building. I hope this is simply standard procedure and not because the alert was called off because some creep was caught trying to abduct a kid.

The ugly ones, too

Two successful 3 milers back to back on Tuesday and Wednesday, then on Thursday, this:

Screen Shot 2014-07-19 at 5.48.06 PMNothing was feeling right, from my bladder to my legs to the slight dizzy feeling I had right before turning around. I don’t need to be a pregnant running hero. I threw in the towel and took the dogs for a walk around the block.

Friday wasn’t much better, though I did feel like I needed a little redemption after my two block effort the day before. I made it for two miles, though they were slow – an average pace around 12:30/mile.

The funny thing is, I did a LOT of walking during that second mile, yet overall, my time wasn’t much slower than the first mile I “ran.” It makes me think that it might be time to employ the run/walk strategy. I also developed a pretty awful shin splint in my right leg, something that usually doesn’t happen.

Yesterday included a walk to/from lunch with Nancy and then a walk in downtown Hancock at night with Scott and the kids. By the end of the day, I was wiped, so I made today a rest day, even though I hate to waste weekend running time.

Tomorrow marks 22 weeks. I wasn’t sure I’d be able to still run at this point, and it’s getting a little dicey (I feel pretty good some days and lousy others), but I’m going to keep moving as long as I can, or keep waddling, as the case may be.

 

All the feels – 17 weeks

I’ve complained mentioned the general discomfort I’ve felt throughout this pregnancy so far, but this week I really felt pregnant.

I don’t know if I just finally passed this weird milestone or something, but now I can definitely feel my uterus/the baby when I press on my lower abdomen. It’s kind of a weird thing, but comforting in a way, like hey! Yeah, you really are still there.

I haven’t felt much movement, so I’m doubting whether I actually felt anything the 15th week. I’m telling myself this so that I don’t obsessively worry about it before my next checkup, which is almost two weeks away.

Workouts of Week 16 were:
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Double digits! Barely, but there. It’s been about a month since I’ve had a double digit running week, something I’m hoping to keep up at least until the halfway mark.

All the feelings, all the time

It doesn’t really seem like a normal week if I don’t have at least 3-4 random emotional outbursts, and this past week was no exception, especially with Father’s Day being yesterday and it being a few years since I’ve been able to spend it with my dad.

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Working on building our house in Livonia

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Swinging and stylin’, 1980

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At the cottage, 1981

What better way to spend part of the day than to go through old photos and cry all over photo albums?

I hold a small amount of disdain for these types of Hallmark made-up holidays, created largely to increase spending, but I have softened a little bit. Dad sent me a photo of a shirt I sent him for FD from a (semi-) local brewery, and it was nice to see him enjoying it and FaceTime chat with him later.

Dad decked out in his swag from Blackrocks Brewery, Marquette, MI

Having kids makes it hard to live 600 miles away from my parents, and the guilt of having my kids far away from their grandparents is a constant in my life. It’s not going to get any easier when there’s a third one here.

Sixteen weeks and I feel fine

I reached the 16 week mark on Sunday, and hot damn, I feel like a new woman.

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I suppose that the week of June 2-8 might technically be the fifteenth week, but in any case, I got out three times for nine miles. Woohoo.

This morning I limited myself to a two-miler. It’s not like I’m racking up serious mileage, but it’s more than I’m used to lately. First mile: 10:33 and second: 9:50. That was kind of a killer.

I had no idea what my pace was and purposely didn’t stare at the garmin. The terrain is relatively flat with only slight inclines throughout, so it’s not like it’s a killer course, but running “fast” felt good. I am very aware of my changed gait, though. Everything feels clunky and slightly unnatural. I just keep telling myself that the longer I can keep this up, the easier it will be to get back into the routine after the baby is born.

Also, I just really like running. I must to drag my ass out at 6AM in spandex when I could be in bed.

What else?

I have been occasionally mentioning the baby to Sophie. I don’t remember if she was completely in tune with what was going on when Aaron was born. She was barely three years old. She enjoyed visiting me at the hospital and seeing the baby, and OMG she does love babies; there is a baby at daycare who gets plenty of her attention. But when I mention it to her, she seems to kind of blow it off like it’s no big deal.

Today she made a comment about someone having a baby in their tummy (not sure where she heard this) and I told her that I had one in mine, too. “Really, Mom?” she asked, followed by “That’s weird, Mom. Does the baby eat the food?” I then told her the baby was technically below my tummy, which made her pause for a moment.

“Mom, I should tell Dad that you have a baby in your tummy.”

“Yes, honey, but I’m pretty sure he already knows that.”

Meanwhile, Aaron did his strange made up sign language requesting another cookie.

Which is fine. I was perfectly happy to not have to field the question of how the baby got there. I’m sure that’s coming, and soon.