Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Oxidative stress

has clearly gone up in the last few months. My hair melanocyte precursor cells are dying an a ridiculous rate.

The amount of gray in my hair has increased nearly 10-fold in the past two months.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Birth Story Part 7a- The trip to the hospital

Sorry Short. I decided its better to be consistent that put a lot up at once (its an anti-procrastination strategy).

Continued from here
Hub ran up the stairs to where I was, and I clung to his neck until the contraction passed. Then we rushed to get into the car. I leaned back in the car seat and closed my eyes, trying to be perfectly motionless, and stay perfectly relaxed. Hub recalled that I had another serious contraction in the car but I don’t remember that. We crested a hill at the beginning of our route to the hospital, and there was a long downhill, filled about every block with lights. I looked down that hill and saw several red lights, and though, “crap” to myself.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Birth Story Part 6- Laboring at Home

Continued from last post (which is contined from 4 previous posts. Please start at the beginning).

Hub and I need to make a brief stop at babysitting family #1’s house to drop off a car seat, and I called the midwife on call during this time. I say, “I am having regular contractions and they are mild to moderately painful, with one that was very painful.” She asks about bloody show, timing, etc. She says, well, you can come in or stay and labor at home for a while. Since we had no idea how far apart the contractions were, and felt we had hours I told her, we’ll labor at home. I had an ulterior motive: I wanted to use this website I’d found (its an app too). So we got home around 11-11:15 am. We set up the computer in our living room, got out the Swiss ball and a pillow*. I labored at first by walking up and down the living room and kitchen. At the beginning I was shaking my hands in response to the pain as if to dry them. At this point the pain was moving from being localized right behind my pubic bone to radiating outward to the outside of my lower hips. The contractions were 6-8 minutes apart and about 1.5 minutes long. They came on rather quickly and took a long time to subside. Their peak was about 10 seconds long. We figured this wasn’t in the 2-3 minutes apart range which would signal time to go to the hospital.

I changed my strategy rather quickly to draping my upper body over the Swiss ball with my knees on the carpet. Hub would crouch down in front of me and hold my hands a count for me. After a contraction, I would slide off the ball and lie completely loose on the carpet with my head on a pillow and let my mind drift. The next contraction would come and since we are planning on not having any more children, I really tried to attend to every detail of the pain… since I will never get to experience this again. In the quiet I could feel a flame of heat starting low in my pelvis and spread up and outward. As it spread, I got up from the floor, started breathing in a controlled manner and hub would jump up and join me. Don’t tell him this, but at the beginning he was doing opposite of what I was breathing. I would be breathing in and he would come over and say "out-2-3-4". After a while he caught on.

We did this for about 1.5-2 hours, so that’s maybe 20 contractions. Pretty soon the contractions were getting intense enough that I couldn’t “hang on” to my breathing, and my body would pant and moan from the pain. These contractions did not come one after the other but after the third one really painful one, we called the midwife on call again. This time Hub spoke with her, still 6-8 minutes apart. The midwife repeated that we could labor at home or come in, our choice. At this point I looked over at my husband. He was sweating and a little pale. I said, “We’ll come in, just in case”. We took the time to print the screen of the website and headed out the door. Hub lead and I followed. He had run ahead and opened the car door and as I was walking down the steps, I was slammed again by a contraction that was COMPLETELY out of control. I grabbed the handrail with white knuckles and my deep groan turned to a light scream. At that moment, I though “Uh-oh, this is pretty serious”.

* this pillow is covered by a pillowcase that was signed by all the attendees at my shower. They signed in fabric marker, so it can be washed. It is by far my favorite shower gift. They say things like: "Breathe", "This too shall pass", "You are a flower blooming (an imaging technique) and "better you than me :) "

Huge Major Course Prep Fail

Got a call today from the dept'l secretary asking me where the dissection material for Cool Subject I class is, because they need it today and can't find it. I usually teach this class, but we farmed out the lecture to one adjunct and the lab to another adjunct for my maternity. I told the lab adjunct this summer that I would prep as much possible for her. More here and here. I'm pretty sure I told her I would order the dissection material for her. After a long call to the company they say that they do have a quote from this summer but NO record of an order. CRAP!!!!

So I say, can I just order now?? He says sure. I say here's my credit card number, blahdy blah, and expiration date, 9/10. **CRAP!!!!**

Now I have to go into work first thing in the AM, get a new credit card (hopefully on my desk) and then hurriedly place the order for the material and then pray they'll arrive before next week's lab.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Birth Story Part 5- Major Contractions

We left off with me crying in the hallway to my friend that we had to go NOW! I did not want anymore attention, and since it was a busy big church and I was in a major thoroughfare I slipped into a different quieter hall to cry. I could hear behind me the frantic activity of my husband and friend trying to work out the logistics of what bags to put in which cars, since Boy would be going with the friends and the overnight bag was going with us. It seemed something out of Keystone cops.

The hallway I was hiding in began to fill with people, so I slipped around the corner to the bathroom and sat on the toilet. I really had the feeling of pressure on my pelvic floor like I had to go, and had a brief thought of taking care that I didn’t deliver the baby in the handicapped stall. Then relatively quickly, the contraction ended.

I felt much better, no tears, and emerged from the bathroom. There was a steady stream of women coming toward the bathroom, the majority of whom, it seemed, wanted to ask me the same question: When’s this baby coming? I evaluated each questioner to how close she was to me. To my dearest friends I leaned in and whispered, “Its happening RIGHT NOW”, and to those I didn’t know as well I replied “I have a feeling it will be soon”

When my husband found me, he was visibly upset. One moment I say that we have to go NOW, and then I disappear. When he finally did find me I was smiling and chatting and socializing. GRRR.

Monday, November 1, 2010

And now for a word from our sponsor...

Very brief interruption of birth story blogging to report on a BIG working Mom event. Today I went to have a meeting with the director of Boy's day care to talk about potty training and she dropped a bombshell on me...

They are closing at the end of the month.

So I must find child care, STAT, AND I'm competing for the limited day care slots in this "so-called" city with 25 other families.

I dropped off Boy and immediately went to the child care center down the street. It's close, its cheap, and they have a few openings. It is ALSO a fundamentalist religious institution. To me this is tolerable, but undesirable. Moreover, its extremely structured - they schedule the kids days in 15 minute slots- which is completely intolerable in Hub's eyes, and pretty undesirable in mine. The rest of the day cares either won't take infants or are a 20-30 minute drive away.

Should I let them turn my kid into a little robot... or should I spend hours of my already precious time driving my kids to some place with a patch of grass behind a strip mall that I can't get to quickly in an emergency? Or should I put my kids in two different day cares: one that lets my barely 2 year old be 2, and use the close one for the infant?