Thursday, September 27, 2012

6 Week Appointment

I had my first OB appointment this week. Well, kind of. My current OB/GYN recently dropped the OB services, so I'm being forced to leave my comfortable cocoon and start all over again with a new practice. Thankfully, the current place doesn't want to send patients out into the unknown before they confirm that the pregnancy is viable, so I had an appointment with one of their midwives - the one who delivered Charlie. It was a talking appointment, so there wasn't too much excitement going on. We did discuss the OCD issue and talked about how that could be managed without having to go back on medication in the third trimester like I did last time around. The first step in that direction was to schedule me for an ultrasound so that we can make sure there's actually something growing in there. That happens next Tuesday. I'll be 7 weeks exactly, so there should be a heartbeat but not much else. She said that if I waited until 8 weeks then we'd see something that more clearly represents a baby, but I think for my sanity the sooner the better. They gave me a short list of practices that they were referring out to, and I went down the list and visited websites and made some phone calls and found one who offered the MaterniT21 test. It's a relatively new test, but it's non-invasive and the research suggests that it's an effective screening text for the three big trisomy disorders. I think that having the test done will definitely help with the anxiety issues. Most of what cropped up toward the end were the whole "what if they missed something?!" thoughts. I originally went into trying for baby #2 intending to have the CVS test done, but after reading the risks and benefits Charlie talked me out of it. We'll revisit that if any of the screening tests come back questionable. I have my first appointment with the new practice at 10 weeks, and they'll order the test at that point. I still plan to have the NT Scan done, since that will also reveal any structural issues. The more information, the less anxious I'll be. Right? RIGHT?!?! After that's all over and done with, I can go public :)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Sucking Wind

This whole running during pregnancy thing is proving to be a lot more difficult that I thought it would be. When I run in the mornings while it's still dark, I really only feel safe sticking to my own, well-lit neighborhood. The sidewalk network is one continuous loop that totals 2.7 miles. I've been running that loop for what feels like forever. It's boring, but it's relatively safe, so I suck it up.

I live at the bottom of a hill. Not a super long hill, only about .4 miles. I measured it with my Garmin once. When you get to the top, there's a .1 mile flat section, then a long downhill broken up by a cul-de-sac, followed by a long uphill. About .6 miles. A little more up and down, another cul-de-sac, and then a steep downhill that you then have to run right back up. Like I said, I've been running this loop for a long time. And I mean RUNNING it. The hills have been great for increasing strength and endurance.

Now? I can barely make it up the first hill without stopping for a walk break. I'm whipped by the top. And the second, longer hill? Forget it. I've been throwing in the towel halfway up. I keep trying to make it "just one more house!" It's just not happening. I feel like a fish out of water. I never thought it would be this difficult to run 3 miles. I've also been running garmin-less, because I really have no desire to see how slow I'm going ;)

I hope things get better in the next few weeks.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Things I Did (or Didn't Do) This Summer, Part 2

In July, I went to an international conference for a Very Important Company in sunny, beautiful, amazing San Diego. It was my first visit to the West Coast, and once I got there I never wanted to leave. 70 degrees and sunny, all day, every day?? Yes, please!

I enjoyed the scenery


I ate really, really good food - grilled cheese from a food truck, real tacos, bacon hot dog, and plenty more.

I ran the conference 5K in 21:57, which is a PR and good enough for second place!

2012 Esri International User Conference - San Diego, CA
(Me and Sean, my counterpart in DC)

I visited Coronado Beach and dipped my toes in the frigid Pacific Ocean

I went to an awesome conference party at Balboa Park - they rented the whole park out just for us. Private museums and plentiful desserts!

When can I go back?!?!

Boxes of Junk

So after I decided to decide that I wasn't going to continue on as a sociologist, I started cleaning out all of the shelves and boxes of books and articles that I've accumulated over the years. They're not going away, just being relocated to my office.

This is *half* of it. I can't believe I actually read all of that.

I do have a plan. It's not fully defined yet, and I haven't thought it through completely, but I have a plan. Swear.

Monday, September 17, 2012

A So Sad Food Aversion

Food aversions. Good times. Last time around it was eggs - the very smell of Charlie cooking eggs was enough to send me running to the bathroom. They were normal eggs, but they smelled soooooooo bad. I was kind of interested to see if I would have the same experience this time around. Well, I do - but with a food that's much closer to my heart. I don't know how I'm going to make it through.

I'm half Italian. Never mind the fact that I'm blond-haired and blue-eyed and have a very French sounding name - I'm mostly Italian. I eat a lot of Italian food - pastas, gnocchis, sauces, pancetta - and cheese. Oh god, the cheese! I love Asiago and Pecorino and I've been known to eat grated Parmigiano-Reggiano by the spoonful. But my favorite has always been Mozzarella. More specifically, GOOD Mozzarella, the kind that you can only find in NYC and Jersey. The kind that comes in a braid or a ball sitting in its own personal salt bath. Whole Foods has an acceptable alternative - they sell shooter marble-sized balls of mozz in the aforementioned brine. Charlie is a very Mediterranean preschooler and often takes a container of cheese along with a container of cherry tomatoes for lunch. He refers to it as "Ball Cheese," however many times the husband tries to get him to call it something else.


Last weekend I bought a container on our weekly shopping trip, as I always do. When we came home it was lunchtime, so I opened it up to snack on a few. It smelled so bad! I tried to get the husband to smell it, but he refused. I'm never sure if I can trust my sniffer, so I took a little bite and promptly spit it back out. I cursed WF for selling me rotten, nasty cheese. I mean really, the expiration date was still a week away! I marched back down there to return it a few days later. Came home, opened the container, and was met with the same horrible smell. Took a nibble - same horrible taste. Husband and son both say it smells and tastes just fine to them. AYFKM? Of all the things to have an aversion to, I get stuck with Mozzarella? Really? REALLY? And right before my trip to Jersey, too. *pouts*

Friday, September 14, 2012

Things I Did (or Didn't Do) This Summer, Part 1

This summer was supposed to be the summer of PhD prelim preparation. I dutifully printed out the reams of articles (4 pages to a sheet, to save the trees) and shoved them into binders to take with me everywhere I went. I dug out my highlighter and note flag collection and made sure that I had a set in my purse so that I could study wherever and whenever I had the chance. I packed them for our trip to Colorado, fully intending to take advantage of the long travel days. And I tried to. I started to. I read five articles on the plane to Denver. And somewhere over Kansas, I realized that I just didn't care. The reading material was suddenly dry and uninteresting. I realized that I had lost all of my passion for Sociology, and that working toward my PhD was a chore instead of a goal. I dreaded reading for the prelim, and the idea of spending another two years working toward a dissertation felt like torture. Instead of it being something that I wanted, the payoff just seemed kind of... meh.

There are so many more things that I want to do with my time! I don't want to sacrifice time with my family and friends because I'm doing a literature search to  ground my research in theory. I don't want to stop running in the mornings and exercising with the husband in the evenings because I need to spend every spare minute outside of work summarizing articles. I want to be able to read for pleasure, spend a few hours running, visit my out of town family, and go on vacations without feeling tied down to the PhD process.

In retrospect, I should have never left the department before I had finished. I look at my classmates and they all make it look so easy - but, then again, they don't have full-time jobs demanding their attention, either. If school was my full-time job, then yes, I'd finish. But it's not, and there are only so many hours in the week, and I don't want to regret the way I'm spending them. I don't want to spend that kind of time on something that doesn't really hold my interest. There are other paths that I'm considering, other things to study that interest me much more that Sociological Theory, but for now, I'm content with where I am. I'm continuing to develop as a person and as a professional, and I don't need those three letters to define me.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Holy Bloat, Batman!

I forgot all about the early bloating. I swear, by the time I get home from work I look 4 months pregnant. I definitely won't be wearing my black dress anytime soon, at least not until the pregnancy is deemed healthy and we spread the news. I'm sure it would just cause speculation.

But really, how do I go from this:                              to this:

in a matter of weeks?

Part of me is really going to miss my sweet abs ;)

If I remember correctly, the initial bloat went away around 7 weeks into pregnancy. Of course, then it all came roaring back in the form of a baby, but at least by that point it was safe to tell people and I didn't have to worry about trying to hide the squishiness.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Keep on Running Till the World Ends

Back in the day when I was super active on a Health and Fitness message board, there was a poll about running playlists. Someone mentioned the Dancing Till the World Ends song by Britney Spears, but said that when they sang along in their head they would always sing "Running Till the World Ends" instead. I went and downloaded that song and found it to be incredibly catchy - bonus that it has a great beat for speedwork.

I have no plan to stop running (or kettlebell training, but that's a different post!) during pregnancy. In fact, my (potentially unreachable) goal is to stay in good enough shape that I'll be able to participate in some way in the 2013 15th Annual Flying Pig next May, when I'll be about 37 weeks along.

The general rule of thumb when it comes to exercise is to not start anything new. Luckily for me, I've been running regularly for a while now. In fact, I ran the day before I got my BFP and two days after. I also ran yesterday morning and will go out again tomorrow morning. Have to take advantage of this amazing fall weather while I can! I'm not running long right now, mostly due to the fact that it's really dark when I run before work and I'm wary of straying outside of my well-lit neighborhood. When I have my first OB appointment in a few weeks, I'll definitely ask what they think is the upper limit for mileage. It would be fun to run/walk a half marathon - I see pregnant women out on the courses all the time. Then there's the girl who "ran" the Chicago Marathon at 39 weeks - that's hardcore. I would LOVE to be in that good of shape at the end of this pregnancy.

To be honest, I'm more concerned with running while breastfeeding. Nursing boobs are no effing joke.


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

On Pregnancy and Exercise

One of the most annoying things on the interwebs was the girls who used their TTC status as an excuse to sit around and eat bonbons. Oh noes! I'm hoping that a little sperm will swim my way, and to make sure that it actually happens, I'm going to plant my ass on the couch and stop all healthy activities! 90210 reruns and cookie dough for everyone! (not that I've never spent an evening that way, or anything...) The research just doesn't support that way of thinking. Most doctors will (should!) encourage you to adopt a healthy lifestyle before you try to get pregnant, for good reason. There are many benefits to maintaining a good

Why am I Here? And Not There?

One of the things that I regret most about my "real" blog is that I made it not-so-anonymous. At the beginning, the intent was to keep my widespread family members up-to-date on pregnancy happenings without having to spend hours and hours on the phone updating them one-by-one about appointments and how I'm feeling. I have a very big family and they like to talk. A lot. That was all fine and good, but then I realized that I actually LIKED blogging, and that I had a whole lot of stuff that I wanted to share with the world (whether or not anyone really cared to hear about it is another issue, altogether). But it was too late, and so I continue on my not-really-anonymous blog. In all reality, most of my family members have forgotten that it exists, and I'm 100% ok with that. However, in the off chance that they happen to pop in (as they have been known to do), I'm starting this temporary blog over here so that I can talk about the latest excitement going on in my life - I'm pregnant! Again!

Well will you look at that...

Being the paranoid, anxiety-ridden, OCD mess that I am, I'm not interested in announcing my knocked-up-ed-ness to the whole world at this point. I love my family dearly, but I'm too paranoid and worried about all of the what-ifs to want to spread the news far and wide just yet. So this is where I will leave my thoughts, all of the things that I wish I had written down when I was pregnant with my first but didn't, because I didn't want anyone to know. And when (if) I pass that magical time known as the first trimester and the screening tests show that all is (likely) well, then this blog will come to an end, and I will move everything back over where it belongs, on my real Blog Home. So join me, now, and then follow me back, later.

Morning Running

The best thing about running alone early in the morning is that it feels like the whole world is still asleep. The fall weather is finally coming to Cincinnati and the moon is staying out later - this morning when I went outside it was still dark and I could see hundreds and hundreds of stars. Orion was clear as day, and so were the tiny pinprick dots of light that made up one of the dippers - it's not dipper season, but the sky was so clear and dark that I could see it, in miniature, directly above my head. It was hard to keep my eyes on the road instead of in the sky, because it was like I was inside my very own personal planetarium. The worst thing about running alone? That 50 yard wooded stretch between houses at the bottom of the hill which I'm pretty sure will be ground zero for the zombie apocalypse. I have a love-hate relationship with living on the edge of nowhere.


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